Tag Archives: IRL

Happy Anniversary to Me!

In the midst of preparing to graduate and planning a wedding, I totally forgot that  WAR Bureau turned one year old on September 3.

Whoops!

Over the course of one year, I managed to write a measly 45 posts (including this one). Pathetic! Shame on you, Charlotte-Skaven-Witch-Elf-thing, shame!

My stats aren’t all that impressive given my tiny post count, but there are other more interesting things!

In the past year I

And so, I tip my hat to you kind readers for visiting and to Mythic for making such an awesome game.

After all, how many people can say that an MMO helped them pass not just one, but three college classes?

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A World Beyond WAR

As of today, I have been in the guild The Murder Junkies on Volkmar for exactly one year!

To celebrate — and make up for a month of no posts — I’m sharing the final project I did for my online media production class last semester. It’s a Flash package showcasing some really striking scenery that I saw in Warhammer Online.

And, as a bonus, you also get to see my work-in-progress portfolio. When I get some time I’m planning on adding in a meta description like Rudepox suggested when I posted my last project.

I hope you enjoy looking at A World Beyond WAR.

A World Beyond War

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On A Happier Note

My Warhammer Online account was charged 22 times in the billing fiasco that’s going on right now. I am a very sad panda, as I expect most of you affected are.

That’s why I now present to you my latest Warhammer-inspired school project!

Behold, A Year of WAR: An Abridged Look At Warhammer Online’s First Year.

I hope my slightly buggy classwork cheers someone up. I know just clicking on the buttons makes me happy :)

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WAR = Health Care Reform?

What with lots of schoolwork, being sick and my already lax IRL newsiness, I haven’t really been paying attention to the fact that health care was being voted on tonight.

This is why I’m glad I have friends like Aravista, who texts me this information in a language I can understand.

Ara: Oh my God watching this health care vote is like watching a zone flip.

Me: ROFLMAO!

Ara: Lol but it is!! It flipped!!!!!! Health care nown!!!!

Me: It passed!?!?

Ara: Sorta. Now the tweaking begins. The dems need to take the motion to commit.

Me: Aaaahhhh

Ara: Its Reikland now. It goes to Obama’s desk and its Altdorf stage 2!! Go king kill!! Where’s DROW???

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Coming Clean

My blog posts in general have become rather few and far between. I guess it’s time for an explanation and some spring cleaning.

To start, I haven’t abandoned this blog or anything like that, it’s more about finding the time and energy to site down and write. Let me give you a break down of what I’ve been up to.

Time Management

I’ve been volunteering as the news correspondent for Warhammer Alliance for four months now. I used to update the front page just on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, but this semester I began updating seven days a week.

As a journalist, I take this responsibility seriously and I’ve incorporated a more newsroom-esque attitude to the job. Sure, my updates are light-hearted and upbeat (an attitude I most likely picked up from stalking Frank of Overly Positive too much) but I put a lot of work in behind the scenes.

After I wake up in the morning (either at 6:40 or 8 a.m. depending on the day) the first thing I do is pick up my phone and check my e-mail, and then my Twitter to see if I missed anything while I was sleeping. This continues at least once every hour as the day progresses until I head home from classes.

Then I update the news. This involves going through my RSS feed, my Twitter feed, the Warhammer site, the official forums and the WAR-Europe site.

For each and every piece of news I post on WHA, you can be sure I’ve reviewed it multiple times. If there’s a video, I’ve watched it at least twice, once straight through and the second time while taking notes to be sure I cover the main points. If it’s an IRC chat or one of those live streams you bloggers keep hosting, I will pop in to get feel for what’s going on, even if it’s only for a few minutes.

To do otherwise I feel would be not only a disservice to WHA’s audience, but also to my profession.

Normally, this type of schedule would be no problem for me and I would easily be able to balance writing thorough blog posts as well.

However, I’m a college senior now. I’m graduating in December, and I also took on a part-time job as a web administration assistant. That is why I get up at 6:40 a.m. three days a week, and that is why I can’t stay up late any more playing Warhammer, despite how much I want to.

Also, as you’ve probably notice me mention here and there, I am engaged. We finally got around to setting a wedding date.

I’m getting married Jan. 1, 2011.

That’s 10 months away. We’ve had to start seriously making plans, which is made extremely difficult by the fact that my fiancé, our families and I all live far away from each other.

This means that I am balancing updating WHA, being a full-time student, working, planning a wedding AND keeping my eyes peeled for job opportunities after I graduate.

On a good day, I’m done by 8 or 9 p.m. On a bad day (like everyday last week) I don’t finish everything until midnight or later.

My blog is pretty low on the totem pole, so it and my gaming time in general have taken the worst blows. Sleep is a close second.

WAR Bureau Isn’t Going Anywhere

If you’ve been reading my blog for anything length of time, or have at least perused through my archives, you may have noticed a change in tone.

This can probably be attributed to my busy schedule, but also to the fact that I’m not being graded on my blog anymore. I can relax more now, and write just about whatever I want without my grade on the line (because I’m going to graduate with that 4.0 if I die trying!)

So, hopefully I’ll be able to find time to update this with interesting Warhammer Online-related things I find and any screenshots I think will be worth your time. Maybe now and then I’ll be able to write an article like I used to. I actually miss that. WAR and video games in general are on the short list of things I enjoy reporting.

The Waaagh Continues

On the topic of Warhammer, I’ve finally gotten around to updating my blogroll. If you have time, I’d like you to take a look at one of the blogs I’ve added under General Gaming called Buy, Try, or Burn It.

It’s a gaming/anime/movie review blog, and it’s written by my fiancé, Jett. To be honest, I’m impressed by the walls of text he churns out, and I actually understand more now about the topics covered than when he has tried to explain them to me.

Also, due to alliance drama and Destro burn-out, I’m taking a break from my Witch Elf on Volkmar. For a while now I haven’t really been enjoying myself when I find the time to log on, which is especially disappointing in light of the work I’ve had to do to find time to game.

So, I’m stalking a different server now as a Witch Hunter. I’m enjoying seeing the game from my main toon’s Order mirror and just playing as Order in general. I’m in Tier 2 right now, and I’m having more fun than I have in months.

Since I’m holding out on being in a guild/alliance after my recent experiences, I also decided to turn the sound back on in my game, something I haven’t listened to in well over a year.

I feel like I’m the girl I used to be back in September 2008, before Skype and Ventrilo, before alliance officership and awkward silences, back when I logged into my first MMO and looked around the Blighted Isle completely confused and not knowing what to do.

With everything else on my plate right now, I feel like I’ve somehow regained a little bit of my gaming innocence.

So if you’ll excuse me, I have a Witch Elf to kill.

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Valentine’s Day

The whole reason I started playing Warhammer was to keep in touch with my friends and my fiancé after I transferred to a different university. Well, my friends quit around December 2008, and Jett lasted until about April 2009.

Over the the past 10 months or so I have repeatedly tried to get Jett to return to play with me, to bash skulls like the good old days. No luck.

Since we weren’t able to be with each other for Valentine’s Day, he decided to surprise me by downloading the unlimited free trial for the weekend.

While I couldn’t be with him physically, and despite knowing that he’s not coming back to WAR, it still meant a lot to me that we were able to actually spend time together and interact in a way that phone calls just can’t pull off.

Thanks Mythic for helping to make my Valentine’s Day better.

Jett and Charlotte

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Friendship

I read an interesting article in The New York Times yesterday, titled “The Children of Cyberspace: Old Fogies by Their 20s.”

It basically discusses that the generation gap being created by rapid advancements in technology is not just limited to youth and their parents, but also applies between young children, high schoolers and college students.

There’s a lot I could say on the topic, but two grafs in particular stuck out to me as relevant to Warhammer Online and MMOs in general.

The boom of kid-focused virtual worlds and online games like Club Penguin and Moshi Monsters especially intrigues Mizuko Ito, a cultural anthropologist and associate researcher at the University of California Humanities Research Institute.

Dr. Ito said that children who play these games would see less of a distinction between their online friends and real friends; virtually socializing might be just as fulfilling as a Friday night party. And they would be more likely to participate actively in their own entertainment, clicking at the keyboard instead of leaning back on the couch.

I agree with Dr. Ito. Her statements are just as applicable to me, a 20-year-old college student, as they are to kids toddling around as sunglass-sporting penguins (yes, I made a Club Penguin account as part of a project I did on children’s social networks. Do not judge).

Lately, I find myself logging in to WAR more and more with the primary goal of socializing versus flipping zones or running dungeons. If I’m logged in, that also means I’m chatting away in vent with my guildies and alliance mates.

I do find spending time with them on a Friday night just as enjoyable as if I went out to dinner with some friends, if not more so. Sometimes, when I’m working on a project and can’t play, I just log into Vent to catch up and talk.

I’m genuinely interested in how they are doing. For example, one of my alliance mates just received an award in the Navy, and I could not be more happy for him.

The line separating my “real life” friends from my WAR friends has completely vanished. This doesn’t mean I have no life. It just means that my online friends are part of my life.

An excellent illustration of this is my friend Aravista from WAR (I do know her actual name, but I choose to use her avatar’s). Almost a year ago we met on Vortex, probably in Tier 1, running into each other in the lakes. We really got to know each other in Tier 2 when our little Witch Elves were  grouped together and told to guard keep posterns together.

This ended up happening to us in every warband we were in together, so we became fast friends. Despite the fact that we weren’t in the same guild, we ran together often and continued to do so into Tier 3. Even if we weren’t together, we would still shoot each other tells to see how the other was doing and what she was up to.

But then Vortex died.

We lost touch. I went to Iron Rock for a month until the mergers occurred and transfers opened to Volkmar.

Over the months that passed, I honestly felt like I had lost a much-loved friend. I wondered if she was still playing and if her life was going ok, but I had no other way to contact her. When I transferred and saw someone already had my name, I was sure to only change one letter on the off chance I could find lost friends like Ara.

Then one day I was in The Inevitable City and saw a Disciple of Khaine named Aravistatoo. I thought the possibility of someone having such a similar name would be just too weird, for I had kept Aravista on my friends list just in case. I took a chance, sent a tell and it turned out it was her after all.

After much rejoicing and multiple tells in all caps, we swapped e-mails and began a renewed communication both in-game and out. Then, without either of our knowledge, her guild ended up joining my guild’s alliance.

So now we talk all the time like “real life” friends. Sometimes I talk to her more than my friends irl. When she and her boyfriend broke up, we talked things out like ordinary girlfriends do. I always tell her about any new developments with my upcoming wedding,

and she gives suggestions. We share pictures ofshoes and discuss the latest news of our lives. We even have our own channel in the alliance vent – Happy Hello Kitteh time.

Ara and I

What I’m trying to show with this story is that WAR has actually enriched my social life, even though it takes place in front of a computer screen. Just because the interactions happen through “a series of tubes,” it doesn’t mean the relationships that result are any less real or meaningful.

I have never met Ara in person, and I don’t know if I ever will.

Nevertheless, she’s one of my closest friends.

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