The first character I ever made in World of Warcraft was a female blood elf hunter I named Sriset. The name was one I’d created for one of my many fantasy novels and I figured it would be a name that wasn’t in much use. I was apparently right because I checked the armory before writing this and there are only two characters by that name: my level 120 hunter, and a level 54 blood elf hunter on the Aerie Peak realm, whose information isn’t accessible.
But how did I come to Azeroth in the first place? What sucked me into World of Warcraft? Well, that story is one of family and my father, brother and oldest daughter will forever be interwoven with it.
The story begins in 2008 when I was in my early 30s and a stay at home mom to my two daughters. I loved being a stay at home mom, but I often found myself with downtime that could benefit from something new to do. Little did I know how much a part of my life that “new to do” would soon be.
In December of 2008, my father was in the hospital recovering from another “episode,” which is what the medical professionals called the mini strokes he’d been having since his first stroke of a few years previous. My middle older brother had come home to help my mother with my father and while we were talking in my father’s hospital room, my brother asked me if I’d heard of Warcraft. He’d apparently been playing the game for a while.
My response to the question was that I’d seen some commercials for the latest expansion, Wrath of the Lich King. That was really all I knew about it, but my brother suggested that I should download the trial and start playing with him. So that’s what I did.
I’m not sure if the original realm I played on is the same realm my hunter is on now, but I know her name was Sriset and that she was a hunter. I’d created a hunter I think because my brother also played a hunter and told me that having a pet made it easier for a “newb” to survive. As I love animals and have always had real-life pets, having a pet in a game sounded great to me!
The details of my first experiences playing World of Warcraft are fuzzy now that it’s been so many years, but I remember thinking how beautiful the blood elf starter area of Eversong Woods was, how pretty the music was, and how my brother kept hopping on his mount and charging on ahead. I had trouble keeping up with him, not just because I wasn’t able to ride yet, but also because of something he called “lag.”
It wasn’t long before I was “addicted” to World of Warcraft and decided to go out and buy the Wrath of the Lich King expansion. I remember installing the new expansion and seeing the new-to-me loading screen and hearing the Lich King music. To this day, whenever I hear that music, it gives me tingles. I’m listening to it as I write this and I have chills. That expansion will always be my favorite and I feel nostalgic whenever I play in Northrend.
Although I’ve taken various length “sabbaticals” from the game, I still have that original blood elf hunter named Sriset – or second incarnation, I’m not sure – and for the past several years, I’ve played her regularly. Her appearance has changed over the years and Azeroth too has changed since I started playing. To continue my journeys in Azeroth, I’ve created many more characters including my second “main” of a night elf rogue named Syaine.
My oldest daughter grew up watching me play World of Warcraft and a couple of years ago I let her take over my second account, which I’d created and never used more than a few times. She was ecstatic to be able to play finally and since then we’ve shared many adventures together in Azeroth. Her favorite expansion is Wrath of the Lich King, she suggested I start reading the Warcraft books with Christie Golden’s “Arthas: Rise of the Lich King,” and she loves to quote, “My son, the day you were born, the very forests of Lordaeron whispered the name, Arthas.”
Playing World of Warcraft is something I do for fun and something that has brought me even closer to my oldest daughter. But I always spend ample time in the real world doing real world responsibilities and partaking in real world fun. Nonetheless, there will always be space in my heart and time on my schedule to journey into Azeroth and see what new adventures await!