Adventure. Can there be anything better than that? Well, yeah probably. A couple of things spring to mind already but let’s leave my fantasies aside for a moment. But what does adventure mean to me? Here I am in Westfall, a place that I knew well. So perhaps you wonder how this could be adventurous? Well, firstly I did not play in Vanilla and already I am discovering things that do not work as expected, like sap for instance. Sap in vanilla throws you out of stealth, which will make 5-mans interesting when I get to them. Plus it is a PvP server, so that is adventurous. But the big thing is a feeling. How to express this is hard.

In the past, whenever an expansion was released, I was the ‘go slow and smell the roses’ player while everyone raced ahead to the level cap. And therein lay the problem, because in the back of my mind I knew that they were racing, and I was getting left behind, and thus it spoilt my play style somewhat. I couldn’t enjoy it as much.

But here, now, in Westfall with my rogue, there is no reason to hurry. The server is not getting any upgrades … ever. So I can explore. I can take the time to read quests. A quest in the past that required me to gather bits of various animals to hand in so some weird farmer’s wife could cook it up was a pain in the bottom if it was taken at all. Now, it’s a total pleasure. I cruise along, taking in the wonderful Westfall scenery as it was before the unsightly Cataclysm. And then I see a boar. Hey, I need some of those. So I sneak up on the boar and we duke it out and then I get his snout. Or I don’t, as it must have got mashed up in the fight.

This is called smelling the roses. And it is wonderful. I haven’t enjoyed a game like this since … well, to be honest since I first rolled a toon on a WoW server back in 2007. I’m doing my best not to use any resources on the internet, although sometimes I have a peek after the fact. And there is an added bonus because whereas before it was all new and exciting now it is also a lot like coming home. The Defias are around and doing dastardly things and I am now up to the point where I need to pin down that pesky messenger.

Playing on this server it really strikes me how much the Cataclysm expansion was a poor idea. It wiped out player’s memories and connections with the game world but it didn’t really work to replace what was lost with something as memorable. Truth be told I haven’t played the MoP expansion so perhaps on this I am wrong. I checked out my old account on battlenet yesterday and it is still there. My characters are on a list but I can’t open them as I get a message saying they have been inactive for too long. Does this mean that they are gone or will they be there again if I reactivate the account? Perhaps one of you readers could help me on that. It would be a shame if I lost my original rogue, but then again my new one is so much fun. And the thought of going back to railroad style scripted events like the awful Indiana Jones rubbish in Cataclysm makes me shudder. Here in Westfall I have adventuring minus the hand holdiing and with a strong community. It doesn’t seem to be much of a comparison when you think about it.