Done at 48, Quits at 50

Many people quit at max level and walk away. I have seen much discussion about a lack of end game content, unwillingness to start the treadmill over, lack of direction without the treadmill, and a few others, but there is one explanation I have heard rarely if ever: people get sick of the treadmill well before 50, but tough it out to “finish the game” before they quit.

Before housecleaning, I would look at our CoH SG and see level 47-49 characters who just walked away one day. “How can you get that close,” I wondered, “and just let it go?” Then I remembered, wait, I did exactly the same thing in Dark Age of Camelot. I quit a few levels shy of the level cap, and I would not have gotten that far if my class were not in demand AFK/borrowed dual box (Earth Theurgist with bladeturn chant). It is easy to get sick of the level grind, and many people have quit in their minds but just want to “beat it,” to say that they did (to themselves, mostly).

For a variant perspective, consider studies in the timing of death. People really do hold on for that birthday, new year, grandson’s graduation, or change in inheritance laws (check Ig Nobel prizes for that last one; it actually is solid research). Yea, the soul-crushing agony of the level grind unto death.

: Zubon

6 thoughts on “Done at 48, Quits at 50”

  1. This is one area I will be officering some suggestions about on my site – the End Game. It so far has been about the only place in these games I stay away from like the plague, I just do see any fun or real enjoyment for the type of gamer I am. I will play to within 10 to 5 levels of maximum and then either find a new game to play, if any are released that look semi enjoyable. Few times, do I create a true playing alternate character and play in the same game with them.

    You know I do not think you need to remove the raid centric thinking, as those who play your games for power, loot, and money alone will find their fill in these areas of the game. Not everyone in your game is of the ilk and there should be a whole lot more to do at the ‘end game’ than if currently offered.

    I do think it is how these games perceive fun in the very core levels of the design however. I don’t know many that I talk to that play MMO’s that find endless and mindless button mashing fun or enjoyable at the levels and length we do this activity in these games. It does not matter if you’re a crafter or an adventurer, the 2D UI in those beautiful 3D worlds are your lifesaver and those buttons as they refresh beckon for your click. Almost every game is designed to encourage constant button mashing as you get through the encounter faster and with more health left over after the battle. There is not real sense of tactics or strategy in the combat model. A typical fight in the RPG side of the genre is usually 6 players huddled around a single mob beating on it while other mobs if pulled are mesmerized and waiting their turn to be whacked.

    When you move these same types of tactics to the end game encounters, the players find nothing new or exciting. The fights just normally last longer as these ‘boss’ mobs have tens of thousands of hit points more than their fellow mobs.

  2. I stuck it out in WOW to level 60, grinded faction until exalted with one group, got my epic trinket as a reward, then my epic mount, and now I’m done. What has me scratching my head about the whole deal is that I wanted both of those items not for the status symbol they represent, but for utility; I wanted to USE them. Now that I have them I’m officially burnt out. I don’t like raiding, BG’s are pointless thanks to some unemployed middleaged guy farming 100k honor and thus setting the standard for everyone else, so my life in WOW has become log on, check the mail, log off.

  3. I’ve gotten one character, ever, to level cap in a game, and I’ve been playing since LegendMUD. Other than that, my characters tend to get stuck about halfway through the time required, but not the levels. As an example, I’ve got two characters stuck in the mid-30s on CoH and my WoW characters usually get to 38 before I look at what’s coming up in the end game and the amount of time it’s going to take for me to get there, and I go, “It’s been fun” and unsub for a few months. Of course, I usually go back 4 or 5 months later and play a characte up to 37 or 38, then quit again, but I’m quite comfortable with my personal “level cap” in games. I play them til I don’t want to, and I think that’s for the best. After all, the one game that I played to level cap in, I burned out on and have trouble getting a character past 15 these days when I play, so I just endlessly create new/joke characters and play them for a few hours then delete them.

  4. I became somewhat infamous in my FFXI guild for not reaching the end — the level cap of 75 — for almost a year before finally grinding out the last few painful levels. (Of course, in FFXI, the inevitable deaths and XP loss you experience while doing endgame stuff result in you falling to level 74 eventually, which means you need to hop back on the treadmill for a few more hours.)

    The same thing happened in WoW. My first character reached level 51, then I lost interest and quit for a few months. The same thing happened with my second character once I returned. (My third attempt was different: I took the second character to 60 and have been raiding since.)

    Why did it happen? In FFXI, I think the XP loss contributed to my lack of motivation — why bother finishing the grind if it doesn’t truly end? In WoW, I’m not so sure. Maybe I just got close enough to the endgame to see that it wasn’t something I really wanted a part of. (At least, not at the time.)

  5. After getting a trio of NEs (rogue, warrior, druid, in that order) to 60, my orc shaman hit 56 about three months ago and… stopped. Dead. I put her in an inn to get back to max Rest XP and never picked her back up for the last push. I’m still trying to convince myself that I should, but I am just totally failing to care. :/

  6. I’ve always quit short in games it seems. The only console games I’ve really sat down and completed I can count on a single hand. Final Fantasy 7, Chrono Trigger, Golden Eye 007, Mario 64, and Final Fantasy 9. I’ve played hundreds more to some extent. PC games are about the same… few that I really play out. However, on my PC I gravitate towards games that you really never beat. Online FPS’s, MMORPGs, or SIM games like SIMCity. Games that may have singleplayer, but really I bought it for the longevity I get out of these titles.

    I am really over my addiction phase of gaming. If I got to level 59.9999 in WoW and felt it was worthless I would quit. I have already taken breaks from WoW and come back with a new passion for the game.

    In the days when I played DAoC I was hardcore and didn’t know when to quit really. Fortunately real life decided to end that :) At one point in my gaming career I can see myself saying “Are you crazy to stop so close.”, but now I see myself “Don’t play if you don’t want. Don’t play just to meet a goal if it isn’t something you’re having fun doing.” That is hard to swallow sometimes because I can really hate doing something in a game, but the end reward makes me want to play more :P

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