Recovery of an MMO Junkie made me look back on my own online life…and it means I need to get some things off my chest. I admit it was quite tough to put into words (mentally speaking) so feel free to avoid this post…
I had some friends quite a while back who liked anime. They were talking about an MMO called TERA a few times, and so I thought I’d join them as their support.
However, I never talked to these friends about TERA.
The game took a few days to download, even after getting Steam, and I became part of the Sorcerer class with this idea in mind. I don’t remember the exact rationale behind my choice, but I think it was that the Sorcerer elves looked better aesthetically…so I ended up picking an elven bishonen character, even though I’m not that fond of elves myself.
I gave my character one of my gender-ambiguous names, as I do – my name here isn’t “MagicConan14” for nothing – and was hoping to surprise my friends by casually bringing up the subject one day, once I was stronger in-game.
However, that day never came…before I knew it, TERA was out of fashion with my friends. I never heard them speak about it again.
I had worked hard to build a character, only to be betrayed by my own quietness. By my own indecision.
By the way, what happened to my Sorcerer, you asked?
I deleted TERA from my computer and deleted my Steam account. You see, there’s a point in TERA where they force you to go on group quests, and without my online raison d etre, there was no need for my character anymore.
This lies in stark contrast to my life with anime. Having grown up in a place where anime was an acceptable hobby (but not a world of collectibles), I could say I was fortunate to be the way I was. Whether I wanted to discover more about Detective Conan in the days where only sketchy Chinese bootleg DVDs existed or yell at someone for watching Black Clover when I needed to concentrate, I’ve been surrounded by people who “get” the odd niche known as anime, to the point where it seems almost strange that I know so many anime fans both in the digital and real worlds. (The anime club I joined this year probably brought the number of real world people up significantly, though.)
I’ve only ever had to hide the fact I’m accumulating merchandise behind people’s backs, which is undoubtedly a much easier thing to do than outright restricting your hobby to the internet. It’s a series of promises, that’s all.
…I wonder what would have happened, had my friends known I was there on TERA to support them when they were still talking about it? Would that have forged the way to a stronger relationship, like it does for Sakurai, Moriko and the others of @Home Party?