A Trip Down Memory Lane

 Do you remember your first few hours in an MMO? I do, and it still makes me chuckle.

Let me set the scene for you:

 Several years ago, pre-child (I now have a wonderful 5 year-old son), my roommate and I were sitting around the apartment playing Magic: the Gathering and watching something on the TV when my girlfriend at the time bursts through the door carrying a package.

“Check this out, you’ll totally love it!”

She had never played it, or any Final Fantasy game (she preferred fighting games), but she knew me well.

Final Fantasy XI for the PS2.

 We pop in the CD, configure the internet connection – a task in and of itself for PS2 gaming – and wait. And wait, and wait, and wait some more for it to finish downloading patches.

“What the hell is taking so long?” we ask each other; completely oblivious to the world of MMO gaming.

 Once we finally get online, we make the fateful decision to play a TaruTaru. I say “we”, but in reality, it was her choice – she thought they were cute and she did buy it, after all.

 We wandered aimlessly around town for a several minutes; mind you, there wasn’t much of a newbie introduction in the early stages of FFXI, nothing at all like what exists today. And by MMO standards, that updated newbie-helping experience is still very minimal. So we explored on our own.

 We ended up in the Windurst library. Doing the usual RPG thing, we were searching around for anything we could click on – you know they hide treasures in the most random things in Final Fantasy games, after all. That’s when it happened. We read a book in the library. And the game said we got cursed.

What did we do next?

 In a complete fit of utter panic, we logged out, deleted the character and re-rolled.

 Yes, we killed a character over some silly flavor text.

  We went on to become a pretty good group of players, we each bought the game and had a pretty good time for a couple years together. We made several new friends in the linkshell we shared. And while ultimately, we all moved on and moved apart, we’ll always have Vana’diel.

 That’s what it’s all about, right? The friendships that are forged and the experiences we share. Because when the server finally shuts down, the pixels don’t mean a thing.


~ by Drew on January 25, 2010.

One Response to “A Trip Down Memory Lane”

  1. You always remember your first.

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