September 26, 2007

How Do I Get My Wife or Girlfriend to Play World of Warcraft?

This is one of the most common questions girls who play WoW get asked (well, polite questions, at least). While some guys appreciate having Warcraft as a solo distraction, many seem to really wish they could convince their significant other to play, too. Thanks to Blizzard's 10-day free trial, it's incredibly easy to let your wife or girlfriend give WoW a try without any real commitment. But how can you ensure that she'll actually want to stick with the game? To a certain degree, that depends on your SO, but here's some helpful advice.

1. Encourage character creation
Even the staunchest non-gamer can get sucked in by the character creation window. Give her a chance to play around with it, and feel free to offer some basic advice on the difference between classes and how that affects playstyle. Admittedly, you know your SO best, but as a general rule, just remember that the hesitant newbie WoW player probably doesn't want a ten minute speech on the merits of different racial bonuses. If your wife really wants to play a troll rogue or a human priest, your role is to smile and be supportive of this choice.

2. Be patient!
Yes, you've killed wolves in Coldridge Valley half a dozen times. Remember though that she's just figuring out this crazy new thing called a "quest log," and might actually want to, well, read that wolf-killing quest before she goes off slaughtering every animal in the forest. Come to think of it, for a while my boyfriend had to comfort me whenever I killed wolves, on account of the terrible pained yelp they emit when they die.

3. Don't hover
A lot of times I'll actually be intimidated to pick up a new game around someone who's already good at it. Even if you're watching her thinking "yes, she's finally playing WoW, my life is complete!" she may be paranoid that you're quietly trying not to laugh as she dies to a flock of enraged moonkin. Make sure she's enjoying herself, but don't watch over her shoulder every second.

4. Do be helpful
"Lrn2thottbot" is for the random nub who whispers you in Un'goro asking where he can find pterrordaxes, not for your significant other. If she asks you where the nearest reagent vendor is, don't tell her to ask a city guard. Walk over to her monitor and give some directions if she asks you for help.

5. Don't power level her
Power levelling's nice when you're trying to blow through content you've already seen three times already. But when you're experiencing the game for the first time, it ruins the initial experience. If she wants to play with you, offer to roll a new alt instead of bringing your level 70 to the blood elf start zone.

6. Do save her from gankers
Nothing can be more frustrating than getting ganked repeatedly if you're trying to quest and not PvP, especially for someone new to WoW. Rolling a character on a PvE server is the obvious solution, but if your toons are already on a PvP server, be sure to explain how PvP flagging works, and be ready to come to the rescue if needed.


Myers said...

I would love it if my wife would get interested in WOW, but she has shown zero interest. My daughter seems to want to try it, though. Thanks for the great suggestions.

Girl Meets WoW said...

My guild has a lot of families who play, from the guy who just bought his first house who invited his sister and mom to roll characters and play with him to a couple whose pre-K son used to run a level 1 character around the human starting area naming all the animals he could find. (Yes, next time you see some random dude running around in circles in the newbie area, it just might be someone's four year old.)

BigBearButt said...

My wife has just started playing after 2 years of watching me play and hearing me yack about it... I thank the lack of TV programming this fall season, by the way. And no good games coming out on the Wii.

She just hit level 20 last night on her rogue, and she seems to be having a great time.

Funnily enough, we seem to have done everything you recommend, without having read your post first.

In other words... you give sound, tested real world advice.

Keep up the wonderful writing!

Girl Meets WoW said...

Aww, thanks BBB. Tell her to stab something for me.

Anonymous said...

I'm one of the girlfriends who absolutely hated WoW and actually got pretty close to leaving my BF when he started doing instances. I DID make a toon, though, but never really got in to it. I let that toon rest for a few months and when we started living together, on my off time I'd play around. That "playing around" turned in to my leveling her to 70 and doing raids myself. Still, not as "obsessed" as he is, where as I'd rather havea good balance. But it all depends on the girl/person I guess.

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Ruth said...

My daughter got me hooked, begging me to play. She said I would love it and she was right. Then, I got my husband to play. We play together all the time. Your advice for the experienced guiding a newbie is excellent. My daughter got frustrated that I read the quests, but to me that's part of the fun, learning the lore, etc.

Crashlove said...

well, my boyfriend used to play wow all the time , and tbh i thought it was for geeks and stuff, but one day he's like, "just try it" and now he can't get me off. the only thing is he says he'll quest with me, but :( he doesnt.

Anonymous said...

My bf tried getting me into it & there for a while I was. I stopped playing though because I noticed I started thinking that that was the only thing to do!! I dont want that to happen, I see how addicted he is & I dont want that for me. There's no point in sitting on your ass all day infront of a computer when the whole world of REAL life is out there & you have a beautiful gf & daughter to hang out with =)
He still says something to me every once in a while, I know he wants me to play bc he says that we can "hang out" on there. It's a game!! It's not like you can go to the movies or go for a REAL walk on there, he talks about it like its real, like those are his real friends and he really hangs out with them. It's sad, and annoying. But, I love him anyway.. idk maybe someday when I decide I dont want a life I'll join.

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