Since I was a kid, I was totally into computer games. I’m totally dating myself here, but I remember playing games on cassette tape. No joke. Cassettes. Really.

But other than a not-so-brief stint playing Neopets (shut it), I was a single-player sort of girl. I played a lot of build-shit-buy-shit-sell-shit games. I played The Sims – in fact, if I ever did the math of how much I spent on Sims expansions, I’d likely have an aneurysm. And I played the hell out of the Elder Scrolls series: Daggerfall, Morrowind, and Oblivion.

It’s not that I hadn’t noticed games like Everquest and other MMOs, but … I just wasn’t interested. First of all, I was like the last person in the entire universe on dial-up internet. Secondly, why did I need to play with other people? I mean, my high school boyfriend and I would co-play RPGs sitting in front of the computer, taking turns at the keyboard and discussing the paths we wanted to take, but that was as cooperative as I wanted to get. I just didn’t see the allure.

Then three things happened:

First, I finally got a DSL internet connection.

Secondly, I went through the worst breakup of my life.  Like deep in the pit of despair. My life was over. I am thoroughly embarrassed by the levels of emo that I fell to during this time.

Third, my dear friend Sou, understanding the healing power of excessive distraction, booted up her copy of World of Warcraft to show me just how pretty it was. Then she sent me home with the CD and said “Just try it.”

That was in April of 2008.  Almost two years later, I’m still playing.  It’s been a rocky relationship at times – I say I’m going to walk away, but I keep coming back. Because although the game itself is, let’s face it, pretty damn good, the thing that keeps me playing is the people. I’ve made some amazing friends, and my boyfriend and I probably wouldn’t have gotten together if we hadn’t both been playing.

But it’s the people that make me crazy too.