Monday, January 9, 2012

The Start of a New Blog

Well, I started a blog I thought I would keep in-character, but it never went anywhere. I started a Facebook for my character, but that never really went anywhere, either. Then I thought, "All the cool kids have gamer blogs, why don't I make one? I don't have to stay in-character either. It can be about housing in EQ2, since that's what I do while I'm gaming!" Or at least, that's what I spend the majority of my time focusing on, in between roleplaying and the occasional trip out in the world to quest.

So here I am, starting a blog. About gaming. Yay.

That begs the question--what should I talk about?

To start with, I suppose I should introduce myself. My online moniker is Jazabelle Wra'Eth. Don't ask about the Wra'Eth--it was a poor choice years ago, and it has managed to stick with me all this time. Most often, people call me Jazabelle, Jaza, Jaz, Jazzy... the variations are numerous. I answer to all of them.

I mentioned I do housing in-game, and that I play EQ2. I've tried other games in my gaming career, but the only ones that have ever managed to really catch my interest have been ones with housing. I adore MMOs for the interactions with others, and the fact that the world in an MMO is a living, breathing entity (even if it lives and breathes very slowly for the most part). No other MMO I've tried--and I've tried most of them out there--has kept my interest as long as EQ2. Why? Simple. EQ2 has one of the most robust housing systems in any game I've played, and the Antonia Bayle server has a large roleplay community.

Sure, there are other games with housing. Sure, there are other games whose look I prefer to EQ2. There are other games whose combat mechanics I prefer. There are games whose characters I like the look of better. But what it boils down to is that I enjoy two things in gaming--housing and roleplay, and EQ2 has both. I won't even consider a game if it doesn't have housing. And now that EQ2 has gone free to play, I can't ever see myself leaving the game until the servers go down.

So that covers the homes portion of the blog. What about tomes?

I've been decorating since I first left the island in EQ2. Admittedly, my first effort involved a bed, a table, a chair, a bookshelf, and several books on top of the bookshelf. I thought I was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Then I found the Homeshow forums, and I quietly slunk off to practice a bit more.

Over the years of visiting the Homeshow forums, I slowly gathered ideas from other people. I learned how to see housing items not as actual items, but as shapes to be used. Eventually, I posted a few houses, to modest praise. Then I took a break from the game. For nearly two years, I played other games. I really only played EQ2 on and off anyway, and this was a very long off period.

When I came back, I decided to redo my home. It went through several incarnations, and in that time I decided that I needed a separate house to hold the books I'd collected over the years of gaming. I also met and befriended Aurelis, the premier bibliophile of EQ2. With her encouragement (and the encouragement of a few other friends) I built a library.

And between Jazabelle's home, and the library, I suddenly found that people thought I was pretty decent at this decorating stuff. I was already slightly book obsessed, but I decided that the library would be a library. I would collect every single book I could get my hands on. I would beg and borrow books from people. I would stop just short of stealing, in order to collect all the books I could. I haven't managed that, but I tried!

The vanity guild Homes and Tomes was born (suggested by Aurelis). It didn't stay vanity for long--it's now a small guild of decorators, crafters, and roleplayers. But Homes and Tomes is how I think of my EQ2 life. And so this blog is about Homes (my decorating in EQ2) and Tomes (the books, and by extension, all of the combat that is involved in EQ2, as most books require combat to obtain).

Welcome to Homes and Tomes. May your stay be as amusing for you as it is for me.