Time Killers – Part 1: League of Legends and World of Warcraft

As a passionate gamer for years there have always been those certain games that just seem to suck the hours from you and not necessarily in a bad way. I’ve been playing games for as long as I can remember, I tend to dabble with all sorts of games but there have always been the rare few that I just can’t seem to shake.

Over the forth coming weeks the Casually Addicted team are going to go over the games that totally sucked them in and ended up consuming ridiculous amounts of hours, first up today we have League of Legends and World of Warcraft.

League of Legends

If you’re unfamiliar with what League of Legends is, it’s a free to play MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena) which was clearly inspired by Warcraft III’s DOTA. Released in 2009 League of Legends has gained constant momentum and it has become a phenomenon around the world. There are currently over 70 million registered users to date and to be quite honest some of the statistics about this game will truly back up why I lose so many hours to it. For example, since 2004 the cumulative played hours across all Halo games is around 2 billion hours, League of Legends clocks around a billion hours every single month.

“It’s crazy how addictive League of Legends is”Due to the fact that League of Legends is free to play that will dramatically help its figures but we aren’t here to just talk numbers, the reason this game does so well is because the pricing model it does have is excellent. Players can experience everything in the game for free and if you want to pay real money you can buy extra skins for your characters and it is amazing how much that works, you are not forced to own any of the paid for content in this game but millions do by choice.

That being said I haven’t lost at least 300/400 hours to this game simply because it’s free. An average game of 5v5 in League of Legends will last anywhere from 20 minutes up to around an hour, in order to compete on the ranked scale you will need to be level 30 which doesn’t sound like much but you will need to win at least 200/250 games in order to get there. There isn’t a whole lot that differs from the ranked and the normal games except for the fact that you are playing for your rank.

One of the reasons Casually Addicted haven’t reviewed League of Legends is because it is constantly improving and making changes, Riot Games manage to constantly add a steady stream of new and interesting characters, there are now over 140 characters to chose from – originally they started with 40. Even though you tend to play on the same map every time I feel this actually adds to the experience because every player who has invested their time to get to level 30 will know this map like the back of their hand. I always see people wanting new maps and I can agree to a possible aesthetic change but if Riot were to change the actual map very much it would take out the competitive edge people now have with the knowledge of the map.

So why has League of Legends managed to take months from me? Well it’s simple, the game is addictive. It is simple but at the same time extremely complex if you wish to become a pro, there is enough variation to keep you entertained, there are more characters than you will wish to even try. It is one of those games where if you lose your match you will probably rage and play another game straight away, if you win it is the best feeling ever. League of Legends has such an amazing Lore behind it as well, each character has a different background and a lot of them are usually connected, be it if they are brothers or mortal enemies, I honestly wish Riot would just make a TV show or a comic book series just exploring the lore of these characters because they are all so unique that it truly engages you with who you are playing, even though I am sure that isn’t the point of the game.

World of Warcraft

World of Warcraft is a game that simply needs no introduction, if you were a passionate player or someone who has no interest you will probably know all about World of Warcraft. It was back in 2005 when Blizzard set the standard for MMO’s ,and they went on to do this for years to come and some would say it is still arguably one of the best MMO’s available. Having the rich lore from the Warcraft series Blizzard shaped a game around this history but in a way that had never been done before with a Warcraft game, allowing players to shape and customise their champions how they see fit.

“I don’t know how I had the time.”The original game had a level cap of 60, now it is 90 with the new Mists of Panderia expansion, to simply get to level 60 back in the day was no easy feat. Grasping the mechanics of an MMO was pretty difficult when I was only 15 years old but like many others I eventually hit level 60 after days of questing and levelling. This was the crazy thing about this game, it would literally take you days to get to a point where you could truly experience what the World of Warcraft had to offer with its end game content.

The end game was always about the Raids of the PVP side of things, originally up to 40 players could enter a raid as a guild and take on the toughest monsters around, their reward was Epic loot of course. That was all it was really about to me, loot, I wanted to be the best Mage there was and the only way to achieve that was to gear up by beating every boss who would drop what I needed. PVP had a different approach mainly through the Arena where players could team up and fight head to head, you would earn points based on how much you won which would allow you to buy better PVP gear. You could also play the Battleground where just a ridiculous amount of players would all go into a game and go at it, Horde vs Alliance style.

Just to get a character to the max level would always take some time, I know people can speed run it in roughly 24/36 hours but the average person just playing the game would take around 4/5 days to get to level 60. Now with the level cap at 90 it will take a little longer but to tell the truth the game has been made a lot easier with every expansion. Asides from leveling up you have the end game content which people will sink months into, but it is crazy when I think back how much time I spent just running around the cities, not even doing much other than showing of my mount.

World of Warcraft just had that spark before where I would be online as much as possible, making numerous characters and just generally goofing around in the game. I have a friend who I used to play World of Warcraft with and I will always remember one day when we were what is now early stages of the games life cycle, he showed me his /played (when you type this is in it shows your total play time with that character) and it was well over 80 days. This was on one character and he has loads of them, if you would to tally it all up we are looking in the region of 180/200 days of time spent on World of Warcraft. I was no saint either my game time probably clocked in at around 120/140 days which is crazy to think about now.

I just don’t ever see there being a game like World of Warcraft again, especially in its hay day. We have seen numerous MMO’s come out over the last 8 years but try to think of some that are still going with a really strong community, the only one I can think off is Eve online. Guild Wars 2 was good but I lost interest, Tera was a total disappointment, that Warhammer MMO I mean what a joke that was. Warcraft just had a hold of so many gamers of all ages and some didn’t take it so well when their parents eventually said “you need to stop playing that video game” – See the video below. It’s sad to think that if my parents ever did that to my brother, he would have most likely reacted in a similar way.

There is no doubt in my mind that World of Warcraft is the biggest time killer game that I have ever played and probably ever will play, I don’t really know where I used to find the time. Let us know what games you guys have had the most amount of hours lost to in the comment below. Stay tuned for Part 2 of  Time Killers very soon.

 

the author

Alex is one of the founding members of Casually Addicted. When Alex isn't yapping away about Halo or wishing that Chromehounds 2 would be made, he likes to make all the amazing photos and pictures for Casually Addicted. Follow Alex on Google + and Twitter @AlexSodhi.