Here I sit, on vacation in Florida, a laptop perched precariously on my lap making use of someone’s open wireless router (thank you, unsuspecting internet provider!), and I feel as though something is missing. Just six months ago I was visiting my sister’s family and for almost the entire trip EverQuest II was on my mind. I couldn’t stop thinking of all the raids I was missing, the gear I wasn’t getting, and all the quests that I wasn’t progressing. This vacation has been different. Aside from starting up this post, I haven’t thought of EQ2 at all; I haven’t been missing it. I suppose it’s time to face facts and come out and admit that I’ve got “the burnout”.
I’m craving something different. In the week or two leading up to this Florida vacation I had loaded up Oblivion again, started a new character, and started the game over from scratch. I instantly fell in love with it, and Oblivion soon had taken over the majority of my play time on the computer. By no means do I consider it the greatest game of all time, but it sure was a refreshing break from EQ2. It was nice to feel involved in a story again, doing quests that further drew me into the world and made me feel important. I think that’s the main thing that’s been missing from EQ2 for me lately. Quite frankly I’m getting bored of the solo quest lines in Rise of Kunark. I’m currently working on the quests in Fens with my wife, but they’re all essentially the same: run to the area with all the NPCs with feathers over their heads. Talk to them all, getting all the quests. Bring up the first listed quest in the journal. Run off and kill/harvest x number of mob/node y. Lather, rinse, and repeat for the remaining quests in the area. Run back to the NPCs and turn in the quests while receiving the next quest. Repeat. From what I can tell, this is pretty much what I’ll be doing until my toon reaches level 75ish and can start hitting up some of the instances. That scenario just doesn’t appeal to me right now.
So, what to do? For the immediate future, I’m going to continue enjoying my vacation, not thinking of EQ2. When I get back home, I’m sure I’ll keep enjoying Oblivion while gaming alone, and working on those solo quests when my wife feels like playing EQ2. I’ve also started reading up on Vanguard a little more, and my pull towards that game is as strong as ever. Personally, I very much enjoyed my time with the Vanguard beta, and fully intend on playing it some day. That day may be drawing near, but I don’t know if I’m quite ready to commit to that just yet. Ultimately, I’m just glad I won’t be thinking about a computer game while walking down the beach tomorrow.