Deaf World of Warcraft guilds and players:
I stumbled onto a deaf gamer network and came across some posts about deaf guilds in WoW! I was so excited having found this, and some of them raid too! How awesome is this? Too awesome not to write about, that’s for sure. Obviously, they don’t use Ventrilo, and this further proves my point it’s not necessary in order to raid- it always boils down to the execution. I’ve always known that there was other deaf gamers out there, but I never knew where I could look for them.
I want to give kudos to That Deaf Guild on Dunemaul, US (Horde), and Silent Serenity over on Stormrage US (Alliance). I’m really psyched having found guilds with people just like me who can’t hear but love WoW. It is just so cool to see an entire cultural group get together on something we all share in common, our deafness, and we are damn proud of it. I’ve been a silent stalker on their facebook pages and slowly getting myself familiar with some people through my observations, haha.
There is another Deaf gaming network, but it isn’t limited to MMO’s. There are apparently tons of Halo, Starcraft and other FPS players out there too, that converge there for death matches and team challenges. I’ve never been a huge FPS game player but I don’t mind the occasional tryst away from my regular MMOs. It’s awesome there are also places for deaf FPS players to discuss their favorite games. These forums are a bit different too- there are many more vlogs (video blogs) of players signing their thoughts instead of writing in english.. because that’s our natural language, so it makes sense people would film themselves signing and posting videos of themselves in those forums.
This isn’t unique to only those deaf gamers networks, it is also seen in other deaf based blogs and websites, it’s common to see American Sign Language videos transcribing the english text on the page. We do this because we recognize ASL as a language in its own right, so we provide an additional format for ASL along with English. So it’s a bit different because anonymity rates high on the list in the gaming world, and you don’t usually see players posting videos of themselves in gaming forums. Most of the time, you would find that on Youtube, but for our reasons for using sign language changes the rules slightly, and we include that as a way of communicating It is our way of life, and it can reach as far as the realms of digital technology, using this and video relay services as examples.
We understand that it is part of our culture, so we have more respect for each other even in the gaming world. It’s why I have yet seen a troll in these forums, and if there was ever a troll, it would likely be a person who is prejudiced against people with disabilities in general. The attitude is much more laid back too, and there is a genuine feel to it, where people actually want to get to know each other. Our deaf communities are small and scattered throughout the world, so we treat our own interactions differently because we recognize we belong to a very distinct cultural category.
The differences that I’ve observed are really interesting, but it doesn’t surprise me because generally, our attitudes toward society are different than that of our hearing peers. It would reach as far to touch the realms of the virtual world, where the same courtesies are also extended there. Anyway, back to topic- this is why I’m excited to have found groups that do the same things I do, and know the same frustrations as I do when it comes to video games.
Go deaf gamers!
Me and World and Warcraft:
I got to level 90! Over the break, I’ve had a bit of time to play and finally dinged level 90 on my druid. Now that I was finally level 90 after taking ages of levelling her on and off since the release of MoP, the old raider kicked up in me, I started levelling my paladin and hunter immediately. My hunter is my farming alt with herbing and mining, so she has to start levelling so I’m able to farm for mats for all of my professions throughout my toons. She supplements my druid’s enchanting and alchemy, as well as my paladin’s jewelcrafting and blacksmithing professions, so she likely will be the second 90 I have, although I have no plans to grind anything on my hunter other than mats. So I’ll try to get her to 90 as quickly as I can and stop there, just so I don’t have to pay outrageous money to buy things off the AH.
(I also secretly want the new JC panther mounts, so I’m doing a little auctioning on the side with things I pick up that I know I’ll never use because I don’t play enough )
When I started thinking about my plans after I got to 90 on my druid… there’s SO MUCH WORK TO DO. Levelling my hunter and getting my professions to max again, along with dailies if I want to keep my druid up to date. I really want to raid LFR but I’m too nervous to go there because I know how horrible LFR is. I ran LFR back in Dragon Soul on my druid as often as I could to max out my VP’s, and to date only had 8 successful Deathwing kills out of more than 15 full LFR runs. I had better results with my normal raids at 16 kills, so you know, that’s saying something about LFR. It’s easier than normal raids, and it’s actually harder to get a kill in with LFR. I don’t know if it’s improvised much in MoP, because I have yet tried running LFR, so I can’t really judge on that first hand yet. One of those nights, I’m just going to have to suck up to it and throw myself into the pit though Edit: I ended up throwing myself into the pit of insanity, it actually ended up being not too bad. It probably helps that I started doing LFR later in MoP when I finally hit 90 on my druid so everyone generally knows what to do now. Phew!)
What about PvP? Nah, I don’t have a ton of time for PvE stuff, so I won’t be getting into PvP at all. I used to go all the time on my toons, mostly on my druid as a battleground healer over Cataclysm. If I ever went again, it would be on rare occassions if I have nothing else to do, and it won’t be a long time until I’m at that point again with WoW. All in all, I’ve been having a lot of fun doing my own thing in WoW and other games like GW2 as well, playing casually and keeping a good balance between school and gaming.
Balance between gaming and school:
I’ve tried really hard to find a balance between work, my school and gaming in general, along with family and friends. I’m really proud how far I’ve come, I am so close to graduating with a degree that I can’t afford any screw ups at this point. It took a lot out of me to step back into school and throttle down on video games big time. I’d look longingly at my computer whenever I came home, but I’d remind myself that I had other things to do that needed to be done first.
I can’t say, “Aw, I’ll do it later. Let’s run a few dungeons first,” and toss my homework aside. It’s too intense right now for me to do that, and for the first time, I can definitely relate to other students who struggle to keep a balance between games and school. It isn’t just school that I’m busy with, it’s my company and community projects that I’m part of. I’ve had to slow down with these also during my semesters, and I can tell you it’s pretty frustrating not being able to do what I want to do. It felt like everything was starting to slide backwards, and I despair over that all the time.
I can’t raid or do anything serious in games as I used to, and I can’t take on more projects like I used to, such as filming events or taking on more work for websites and videos. My career is starting to take off, but I can’t push it too much because I need to pass school. I hate having to pass on opportunities, but I remind myself that more will come my way and I’ll be ready when I’m finished school. It’s a bit of a mind game for me right now, pepping myself up and remembering why I’m doing this. I’m doing this to get a piece of paper that says that I’m a professional at this stuff and I should be paid accordingly.
Lissanna over at Restokin wrote a very good article on balancing your life as a student, you should go check it out. After reading that, it made me glad knowing I wasn’t alone in my troubles and I’m definitely using some of her tips. I just have to keep chugging on.. I will get there eventually and life can resume as normal again! I wanted to say thank you to everyone who said hello and wished me a welcome back to WoW, it’s good seeing everyone again. But just as a reminder though, I’m still going to be coming and going, haha. I hope everyone is having a good weekend