The last time I made a run at World of Warcraft, I made my wife play along in the interest of creating something else we can do together. We made it to about level 40 and then Lord of the Rings launched. We gave that a try and she went back to WoW. I was hooked and so we went our seperate ways even though still sitting side by side in the computer room. After I switched to playing LotRO in a static group once a week, I lost interest in playing it solo the rest of the week so my thoughts turned back to WoW. We tried to have her now level 80 hunter power my level 40 hunter through some quests but it just was not that much fun, and I was not finding my hunter to be much fun anyway.

Flash forward a few patches and I asked her if she would be interested in giving the refer-a-friend program a shot. She’d have to start over but with triple XP we ought to get up to level 60 pretty fast. She was ok with the idea so we launched our attack, this now being my third account at this point. Blizzard loves people like me.

I turned to the addon community to see if there was something to help guide us somewhat as we do tend to wander off at times and lose track of where we are in the quest lines. I found one called TourGuide which allowed me to drop in Jame’s guides for the appropriate level. This turned out to be crucial to our enjoyment as we quickly outleveled every area before we finished the quests available.

I created a Warlock and she a Priest. Two classes neither of us had much experience with. Two months later we hit level 60 and got our flying mounts in Outland. We struggled with talents as well as glyphs. People say the game got easier, but there is still a lot of complication available in my opinion. If you don’t bother to hit the web to look everything up, you mostly guess your way through. Do I want this? Is this good or bad? Luckily most everything can be changed if you don’t like it so that helps.

I’ve got a bunch of gray Warlock quests at this point, not sure if they are worth doing. We tried to do one of her Priest quests but the dragon we had to kill was at the bottom of a very cool dungeon filled with creatures hell-bent on wiping us out. So now we are popping around in Outland and boy do having flying mounts help. No longer do we have to fight our way into the middle of a camp to get at the boss, now we can fly in and drop down on top of it.

Another issue that would normally come up is money, or lack of it. This was not a problem for us, as my wife just sent us gold from her level 80 whenever we needed. Otherwise, even just buying skills would have been impossible. I can’t imagine what it would be like to go through without the gold being handed to you.

Before hitting 61, we made sure to give away my bonus levels to a low level Druid she had on her account – mostly so she can watch him dance in cheetah form. She loves that. The leveling has slowed down dramatically, but it was not the brick wall I was expecting. Also, is there any cool looking cloth armor? I still look as silly at level 62 as I did at level 2. I must say though, Warlock is a very fascinating class. There are so many ways to play it and at times I feel extremely powerful. We take on groups of mobs our level with ease. I try to keep a soulstone on her all the time as she does tend to generate a lot of aggro now and then.

I’m going to have to buy Wrath at some point, but I’m waiting until something happens that makes me know why I need it. So far, I’ve had no need for any part of it.

To sum this whole thing up, I’ve kind of redicovered the joy of MMOs through my wife’s eyes. We are just doing what feels fun to us, not worrying about the perfect talent tree or which piece of armor is a “must-have”. Just plain old having fun, goofing off, and seeing what’s down those stairs. It has revived me from my MMO funk. You may have noticed a lack of posts from me lately (even less than normal) and now you know why. I’ve been playing a video game and having fun.

– Ethic

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I own this little MMO gaming blog but I hardly ever write on it any more. I'm more of a bloglord or something. Thankfully I have several minions to keep things rolling along.

7 thoughts on “Refer-A-Friend”

  1. I’m glad you’re finally bringing to light the horrible scourge that is “Refer-a-Friend” programs. Sleazy game developers take advantage of natural tendencies of people to want to advance faster, so they charge you to play with your friends! Not only do you have to pay the base subscription, but you also have to buy all the expansions; this nickel and diming has to stop!

    What’s worse is that people who participate in the Refer-a-Friend programs can just buy their way to higher levels easier instead of properly earning them. You don’t know if that PUG member took 50 days or 5 days to get to level 60! It’s not right that people don’t properly earn their levels and can simply buy them instead.

    Why does Blizzard do this? Because they’re greedy money whores. Not happy to get money from one subscription and set of box sales, they get people to want to engage in this type of program to give them more money by buying second or third accounts. But, it undermines the purity of the game where anyone can achieve anything as long as they have plenty of free time, people willing to help them, and are willing to work for the achievement.

    I hope game companies will shun microtransact…er, I mean, Refer-a-Friend programs so I can go back to solo grinding out something really tedious with a sparkly reward to show how 3133t I am~

    1. *applause* You struck just the right tone to elicit a healthy chuckle out of my MMO-tired mind. :)

      I almost did the Refer-a-Friend thing as a favor to a friend (me as the noob, him getting the Zhevra because I didn’t care), but never was able to carve out the time or the final justification to do so. If it were just the box price, I’d have done it, but needing to sub for a while is always a backbreaker for me.

  2. Is there anything worse for an MMO blogger than enjoying the game they are playing? I’ve never tried the Refer-A-Friend bit because…. I DON’T HAVE ANY FRIENDS! /sob

    Okay, I’m feeling better now.

    Glad to hear you’re having fun. I’d rather be playing a game than writing about it any day. Speaking of which, back to Champions.

    P.S. Epic comment, Psychochild.

  3. Hmmm…my advice is to leave the warlock quests alone – nearly every reward in them is designed for level 60 content, and is fairly outstripped by outland stuff.

    As for the priest quests, it depends on which one – you CAN safely skip all of them, but there’s one which gives a totally awesome-looking staff, so i kept that one around and did it at a higher level.

    You don’t need Wrath till level 68-70 (depending on if you decide to finish 68-70 in outland, or head to the superior northrend quests) but at that point, buying the expansion is fairly necessary for progress.

  4. Another issue that would normally come up is money, or lack of it. This was not a problem for us, as my wife just sent us gold from her level 80 whenever we needed. Otherwise, even just buying skills would have been impossible. I can’t imagine what it would be like to go through without the gold being handed to you.

    There is normally no money problem in WoW for the basics (repairing, new skills, etc.). The problem you’re facing is that you’re gaining XP way faster than everyone else does, so you kill less monsters, receive less quest rewards, etc. That’s where your missing money is.

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