What Im about to tell you happened a long time ago. Actually a very long time ago…
It was a bitterly cold night, so cold I couldnt help myself stuffing my hands in my pockets. The full moon cast an eeire light, you know the kind that keeps you looking over your shoulder half the time. I was alone travelling down a dirt road in the middle of nowhere. In the empty fields on either side mist was swirling in the pale light.
Then at a distance I saw it, light. At first I could only see the bonfires, later the outline of houses. As I got closer I could see men standing around the bonfires for warmth. Some alone, some in groups. Grown men, strong and tall, armed all of them. To say that I was scared is an understatement! I wasnt wery old and didnt have the guts to go up and ask for directions. So I continued on, down the main street and out the other side of the village.
Later on in life I would return to this village. Fate had sent me there. The men became my friends. Some throwing me the odd job, able to earn a few coins for a meal. Some would even let me crash for the night. I never told them of my first visit to town, that I didnt have the nerve to talk to them then. Sometimes I thought of going back and telling them. But that opportunity has slipped through my fingers. See then came the earthquakes and the war, and my friends are gone. Dead or scattered by the wind, to the four corners of this world. I have come back now as an adult to see the carnage for myself, and it saddens me. All is gone and only the ruins remain. The ruins and some bandits.
The village Im talking about is Camp Taurajo. And on that first night I was just a young tauren hunter heading for Crossroads.
IRL When my daughter was born I was 36. Her mom and I split up 2 years after, and the girl stayed with me. I needed something to do with my spare time. After work and my parenting duties. Something at home, ready to take up hundreds of hours. Where I could come and go as I pleased. After tucking my daughter in for the night I would play World of Warcraft. On weekends when she was with her mother I would go all in. Yes, yes I had a job and all that, but Wow - was big. As the years went on my daugther would sit on my lap and I would run around Azeroth telling her stories of this world. She would know all the characters by heart. The big cow with the pet cat, who could sow leather clothes. The dwarf with the big sword, who rode a goat and made steel armour. The little cow who could transform into a leopard. Id let her decide where we would go and what to do next, and Id spin her a great story along the way.
I know that I moan and grumble about the inflation of Wow. How nowadays people get a mount before they even figure out the auctionhouse. I had to bloody run until level 40! How what used to take 2 days to level is now done in an hour. But Im looking forward to Classic.
So to Blizzard and the devs and artist and all you - thank you! Thank you for the best game ever. From my daughter thank you for the best fairytales ever. In this house we have a christmas tradition. Every year I try to have a character ready for Winterspring, and we do that zone between christmas and new years. Its a regular thing for us.