The last few months have been a really strange time for me. Being away from my family and dearly loved ones, living in the heart of Brisbane, I found myself feeling especially isolated and lost for things to occupy my time. If I were a young single guy with an expendable income, I might find myself frequenting the many pubs / social venues around the city. I’m not that guy though, so I found myself not wanting to sit around my apartment, but also not wanting to actually go anywhere. With a majority of my friends living interstate and missing the weekends being spent sharing a drink, playing a board game or belting out some God awful sounds during a drunken bout of Singstar, I was essentially bored out of my skull for company and entertainment.
For Father’s Day this year, my wonderful kids had picked me up a copy of Guild Wars 2. While I thoroughly enjoyed my experience in the virtual world, it was still a largely solo adventure. Recently things have changed. Not too long ago I received an invite from a Guild that had a large Australian player base. Decimatin. Through these guys I have found a group of what seem like minded individuals. While it would be extremely easy to sit back and groan or laugh and make fun of “Those kinds of people”, I would say this to you. Sometimes life is pretty shitty. Plain and Simple. You do your 9 to 5 day, you mindlessly complete the mundane activities that you are required to undertake and then if you’re lucky, you spend a few hours staring at a TV screen mentally unwinding from the day, ready to face the next. What the guys in Decimatin have provided me is a community, whether it be real life or virtual, that I can jump online with, make a few jokes, have a few laughs and basically forget that things might be less than perfect for a few hours.
I guess that this post could basically be seen as a “Thank You” to the guys from the guild. It’s been great fun so far. While everyone within the guild that I have interacted with have been fantastic, I guess I have formed a bit of a core group with a few people. Dom. One of the most unique individuals I have ever come across in an online community. To hear someone speak as passionately or sincerely as this guy is simply astounding! I don’t care what it’s about! If everyone showed as much enthusiasm for anything in life as much as Dom, then we might be on the right path for a worldwide virtual hug! Of course I have to give shout outs to what has really become “The Fractal raiders” Mon, Avaree, Snip, Siomai Dom – amazing teamwork, dedication and a real feel of “team”.
There is a really weird feeling of ‘friendship’ or ‘comradery’ when you are doing something as meaningless as playing a computer game, but you’re working together to achieve something and you know that when that Mossman pops out of the swamp and smashes you to the ground that somebody will call out “You OK there Tarryn?” (My characters name) or rush over to help you up. Even something as totally stupid as an in game jumping puzzle becomes so much more fun when you’re all having a laugh as you fall from geysers or when you know that you have two friends that aren’t going to leave you behind as they patiently wait for you to guide you the rest of the way.
To have guild members like Gil who will graciously give their time to spend an hour swimming around with you hunting nasty Barracudas and Drakes so you can get a handful of scales, and then mail you a whole stack more after the event, is something you don’t usually encounter in an online community, much less in the “real world” (Could have something to do with the fact that we don’t usually have aggressive river Drakes in the real world, but I digress).
As nerdy as it may make me, as much as sometimes I feel like an extra from an episode of Felicia Day’s “The Guild”, as much as there will no doubt be people that think my time and energy is wasted on “Silly computer games”, I would like to say “Thank you Decimatin”, you guys have made me feel part of your community and bought a smile to my face on many occasions, even when we find ourselves being overrun by Dredge or screaming in panic as that Agony Condition ticks away on our health bar!
Tarryn “I could outrun a Centaur” Underhill