Someone made a comment on my blog when I had not posted in over a week saying that maybe my garrison swallowed me and they were not to far from the truth. My garrisons had become such a huge task eating at my play time that I had no choice but to take a step back for a while. I had to retrain myself, to not do what I would normally do, to not care about my alts.
I play a lot, a hell of a lot really, but when it finally came to the point that I was logging in and cycling through 7 level 100s and 3 lower levels all with their garrisons and then noticing that I had no time left to do anything else in the game, the game started to move from "fun" to "work" for me.
I had no time during the week to grind reputation, to do dungeons to gear alts, to pug raids, to farm materials I needed, like traps for my barns, to do the daily, to squeeze in challenge modes, to even get in world boss kills on all my 100s, to do the myriad of other things the game has to offer that I might think of as fun because I felt I "had" to keep up with my garrisons and professions first. Once that was done I usually had no time left to play the game.
So I did get swallowed by my garrisons. I was in a cycle of doing nothing but my garrisons. I love garrisons, don't get me wrong, I think they are a nice addition to the game, but when you have alts like I do and play the way I do where I feel I need to do everything I can do to better my characters, they became too much. Too much of a time investment.
I love to level characters and now I am stuck in a place where I did not want to level any more characters because I did not want to add any more garrisons to stable of things I needed to do each day. In a way the garrisons and the prospect that they are waiting for me there was keeping me from doing something I really enjoy doing, leveling characters.
Taking a step back and saying, no, I will not do them, was something I needed to do. If I did not step back from the garrison grind I might have ended up quitting the game because that is all the game would have become for me. The daily grind of doing garrisons with no time for anything else. Sorry, but I work 11 hours a day as it is, I do not want my 2 or 3 hours at home to be more "work" and garrisons had become that.
I found myself playing longer than I normally did, because I felt I had to if I wanted to get some "fun" time in. It took me so long to do my garrison work that now I needed to stay on longer to get the things done I wanted to do. To squeeze in some challenge modes, to run some dungeons on my alts, to do my daily for apexis crystal quests on a few characters, etc. So I was playing even more than I had played before because my normal weekday play time was no longer enough as it was spent working in my garrisons instead.
I now have barns empty with no work orders churning for over a week. I have full stacks of orders sitting on many characters and only get to them when I log into that character to do something with them. I am way behind on my burnished leather, hexweave cloth, and other parts because I refuse to log into them to do their daily cooldown because I know I lack the self control to not just do that and I will end up doing their entire garrison and wasting my time I should be playing doing work instead.
I hate playing less than effective. I should be doing my daily cooldowns, I should be doing my garrisons daily, I should make sure I do all the little things I can be doing but I can't. I can't because if I do it would hurt my enjoyment of the game. But isn't it hurting my enjoyment some knowing that I am not taking advantage of everything I can in game?
The garrisons are the rock and the hard place and I am caught up in them. Do them and feel like I am doing everything I can for my characters or don't do them and focus just on one or two characters and have fun with them. Either way I am leaving something behind. Leaving behind my alts by not doing them or leaving behind the fun time so I can do them.
I had to take a break because of the garrisons, but I also came back because of them. I do like them. I just need to learn to change the way I play so I can get the most out of the game while not pushing it so far it feels like work. I need to change because the game changed. That is just the way it is with this game and every other game. Times change and you either change with it or move along. I am trying to change. Garrisons are forcing me to. Because if I don't change, I will have to move along and I am not quite done here. There is still a lot of game left to play.
How are garrisons affecting how you play?
Garrisons are good, they are bad, they are a grind, and they can cause burnout if you are not careful and get swallowed by them, trust me on that one.