First off let me say welcome back to the everyone (read: one person) who reads my ramblings (thank's Mom). I've been retired from WoW for about a year now, and I must admit I do miss it. I miss the friends and I miss the interaction, and the adventures we would go on together. I hear about MoP and the simply fun gameplay that it has brought and I think: "Yeah, I could do that."
But I cannot. I have too much of an emotional investment in WoW, a drive to succeed and excel based on the history of my playing, it would quickly consume my life and my time, a consumption I cannot afford. I tried off and on with The Old Republic, as well, though lag issues and the same consuming drive to min-max myself to oblivion set in and began to occupy my every waking moment.
I crave MMO's for their social interaction, but my drive to explore and experience the entire world in such games causes me to eschew the social relations in pursuit of perfect understanding of the game world. I do this too with single player games, RPG's chief among them. There are two unique differences, however. Firstly, MMO's as we know are never complete, there is always new content, either via micro-patches or unlockables or expansions, there is no end, and it is designed so. Secondly, and perhaps this is my greatest failing, is the feeling of constant competition and the clock ticking down to the next release, gated encounter, or expansion. This continuous pressure weighs heavily on me, driving me to constantly seek to explore, discover, and gear up. This is not a criticism of MMO RPG's, this is my own problem, one I've come to recognize and now seek to mitigate.
More on this in posts to come, but for now, I'm back, just not in WoW.