For the longest time, I have struggled with the thought of putting down WoWs.
Maybe it’s the mindless joy I get out of every earned pixel achievement, the satisfaction behind a 100k damage games , the 10 game winning streaks I strive for and call it a day with, or just the pure nostalgia to a simpler time – when I was a kid without a singular care in the world. Something about this game just occupies my thoughts during playing hours and unfortunately, my nonplaying hours.
The latter of which is where the first of two of my personal issues stem from. If I were able to just play this game and turn it off after an hour, this wouldn’t be an issue. However, if someone were to ask me if I was addicted to gaming, my answer would be an unequivocal yes, yes I am.
My mind doesn’t just turn the game off when I stop physically playing. If anything, that is when it goes into overdrive. I start asking questions – why did I lose this match? Could I have done anything differently? That’s when my imagination starts, and I catch myself replaying the game mentally over and over again.
With that in mind, over the course of the last several years, I have made an earnest attempt to phase out video games with competitive elements. I just get too enthralled in the process of climbing the ranks, improving match over match, etc. It is so easy to just check up your stats, create a battleplan and then realize the fruits of your labor. This sense of instant gratification is what makes gaming so easy to get addicted to.
Quitting worked, momentarily. In fact, WoWs was the last ‘competitive’ game I played about 2-3 years ago when I decided to make an inspired effort to straighten out my priorities and focus on my life. That lifestyle change bore fruit – I was in a happy 2 year relationship with the girl of my dreams and managed to get a new job in my dream career.
Finally, after that several year detox I decided to play games again on a promise to my friends that I would when I found a new job only to find myself enjoying WoWs and other games more than I should have. It was only supposed to be a 3 weeks excuse to play while I was job transitioning. And then Covid-19 happened. And then I started WFH, and the stay at home orders started coming in. And then I was bored out of my mind, lost my sense of time and found myself sinking deeper and deeper back into WoWs out of bad habit. It has been 4 months since I picked up WoWs again and hopefully that ends tonight again, for the last time.
The second issue and really the source of why I hopefully can put this chapter of my life behind permanently is that lately or should I say after the 2-3 year hiatus, this game just doesn’t seem to cater to me anymore. I don’t know who’s WGs target demographic is, but it certainly isn’t targeted towards competitive gamers where skill is rewarded.
When I came back there was more than enough content to make my mind explode and to keep the old beta tester inside me very happy. Daily combat missions and container rewards, and the addition of multiple national lines. When I stopped playing, we only had the US, Japan, and the start of the Soviet DD lines, and holy shit is there a lot of new content to explore now. All of these are definitely positive improvements in my book.
But the shine ends where the content stops and the gameplay begins. Now, I used to consider myself a top tier CV main so I am definitely biased in my opinion. Funnily though, if you check my stats it shows that I play CV 27% of the time and Destroyers and Cruisers more at 29% and 28% respectively. The reason why I consider myself a CV main is because while I enjoy playing all 4 lines and am great in all of them, I really only played WoWs because it gave me an opportunity to realize carrier gameplay. And also because I loved the USS Bogue. It’s not even in the game anymore FFS.
A little background may be warranted. Before playing WoWs, I used to play SC2 and in SC2 I was diamond 1 and played in local tournaments. Diamond 1 was the highest rank available at the time and had I continued to play I probably would have joined Masters like some of my other friends. So you can see that the RTS playstyle that was originally envisioned by WG definitely appealed to someone like me.
I come back after my 2-3 year hiatus and find that WG completely ruined carrier gameplay by making it a TPS. And in those 4 months I played, I tried to get used to it, got used to it, said to myself “ehhh, it’s not too bad” but no really it’s terrible, absolutely terrible. I play to win and this is where the totality of the changes to carrier gameplay absolutely kills me. As a carrier, I have the LEAST win potential on the team. The amount of winning plays I can make as a carrier is so abysmal, I might as well be nonexistent. Carriers in a WW2 setting, nonexistent factor. Nice.
There is nothing I can do to put my team in a winning position that the opposing carrier can’t do even if I have better map knowledge, more effective communication, better decison-making, etc. If the enemy carrier is at least half or even a quarter as good as I am, we basically cancel each other out and my contributions fall to 0. Anything a very skilled carrier player can do, an average or below average player can as well. WG literally took skill out of the equation and that’s the root of the frustration for me.
The same is not true for the other lines. I play destroyers, cruisers or battleships and can devastating strike someone on the opposing team with one click of a button and immediately know that I have made a positive impact on my team. I may have to do it a few more times but I know in the back of my head that my contributions will lead to a victory. I play CV and I absolutely have no potential to devastating strike nor feel like I’m making a positive impact. If anything, I can spend my energy spotting for my teammates, land 2 missile hits that ‘annoy’ the enemy DD, enemy DD lands 1 torpedo on my DD and sinks him cuz my guy is just sitting in smoke and I effectively have lost that battle even though the enemy carrier has not contributed to that engagement. I lose more times as a CV for attempting to help than I do in any other class. I don’t know. It feels like I’m just blessed with teammates that play worse with more intel.
Ultimately you get to a point where you ask yourself this question as a carrier player. What ship do you want your best player on your team to play and the answer is anything but a carrier. And honestly, that is the most frustrating part of this ordeal. I can contribute so much more as a competent destroyer, cruiser or battleship player than I can as a carrier player.
That pretty sums up my 2 main thoughts and I really wrote it as a means of catharsis.
- For myself, so that I can always come back to reflect on this thread whenever I feel the urge to play WoWs and say no
- For posterity, in case there were/are/will be others like me that are on the fence about quitting/getting their priorities straight and I can just link them this
If you made it this far, thanks for listening to my thoughts. GL and HF! This is BoomShakaB0xer signing off!
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© Post "Thank you WoWs! And Good Bye!" for game World of Warships.
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