(or Why There Are Distressingly Few Dwarves Mentioned In Dwarven Battle Medic)
I imagine that anyone who is reading this blog with any regularity has noticed that it has a very distinct Holy Paladin slant to it and that there seems to be a decided lack of Dwarves around. Oh sure, there is a picture of a Dwarf in a dress at the top, and a nice shot of Ironforge in the background, but the Dwarven Battle Medic seems to talk an awful lot about Human Paladins, doesn’t he?
So where the hell are all the Dwarves?
The answer is simple enough: My main character is Thosif, the Human Holy Paladin. Fannon the Dwarf Priest is an Alt. This blog and I are named after an Alt.
This really brings up an interesting question: How do you define “
Main” or “Alt”? What criteria do you use to define who your main is? Is there a difference between your Main Character and the Character that you personally identify with or are identified by? This question was asked recently by the lovely and talented Endyme of (Un)Holy Randomness and is one of those philosophizing topics that I find endlessly fascinating.
WHAT IS A
(or My Definition Of A Maintastic Play Style)
Every person is different, of course, and you would likely find that there are as many answers to this question as there are World of Warcraft players. The only thing that twelve million WOW subscribers have ever agreed on is that THEIR class is underpowered and YOURS is overpowered and should be nerfed. Of course that is untrue -- except in the case of Holy Paladins, who are clearly underpowered and should be buffed.
My definition of a “
Main” is the one character that, above all others, dominates your thoughts. It is defined by passion. It is the character that you speak of first when someone asks you “What do you play?” It is the character that you log onto first when the new content drops. It was the character that you were most excited to level to 85 in Cataclysm. More than likely it is the character that you want to raid with, if you’re a raider. It is, simply, the character that you are excited about and want to play when you sit down at your computer after a long day at work.
Who did you log onto first on December 7th? Odds are that’s your main.
Mains can change over time, and there are as many reasons as there are people playing. Interests change: You may be bored of tanking and want to try damage or healing, you may become enamoured with a different class’s playstyle, or perhaps you created a new character of a different race that has caught your imagination. There is no way to know what factor will come into play that will cause you to emotionally switch from one
Main to another.
There is also a difference between your Main Character and the character that you are identified by. I go by the name Fannon because that was my
Main when I joined Shadowgarde and it’s the name that I have chosen to identify myself by in the blogosphere as well. The name you go by can change over time as you meet new people who only know you by your new Main’s name.
Of course, emotional attachments run deep and sometimes it is hard to let go of an old main. Many times the player will be the last person to realize that their main has switched or only realize it long after the emotional switch. When I declared my new main on the Shadowgarde forums it was a case of “We know” and “about time you admitted it”. Sometimes you have to just realize that it’s OK to switch Mains. (Really, Endy, it’s OK).
It is this emotional attachment that led me to naming this blog Dwarven Battle Medic even though my new main is a human.
WHAT MAKES AN ALT?
(or Captain Obvious Visits Obviousland)
An Alt then is straightforwardly defined as any character that isn’t your main. People will have Alts for many different reasons; banking, trade skills, PVP, different roles or play-styles. Sometimes people will have a separate account so they can play two characters at once. Some people will have an army of Alts with multiple max-level characters while others will have a stable of lowbie characters so that they can experience different things.
Really, there are no rules when it comes to Alts. Alts are there to fulfill the player’s desire for variety or provide access to something that their main can’t do.
A BRIEF HISTORY OF MAINS
(or Where The Hell Did The Last Two-And-A-Half Years Go?)
I rolled several different characters (including Thosif) before I finally rolled one that resonated with me enough to finally, truly call my Main Character. This was Fannon. I rolled my priest so that I could play with my nephew and was so enthralled by the play-style that he became my first level 80. He was the first toon that I did dungeons with, the first character that I took on a raid, and the first toon that I took through Icecrown Citadel, going 11/12. It was through my Dwarf Priest that I learned how much I enjoyed healing and Sindragosa 10, my most satisfying boss kill to date, was done on him. I joined my guild during this time and so I, of course, became known to them as “Fannon”. By other names too, but those aren’t appropriate for polite blogging.
In what is likely to seem a familiar story, during Wrath I dabbled with other characters to try and experience everything this game has to offer. Thosif, who I had created very early on but had let languish for a year at level 19, finally caught my eye and I decided to level him to 85. I was originally going to level him as a tank since I already had my healer, but a guildie was levelling a Protection Warrior at the same time, so I decided to respec Holy so we could run dungeons together. The first dungeon I ran as a Holy Paladin was a revelation. The Paladin healing style was far more simplistic than a Holy or Discipline priest, but incredibly and fantastically fun.
I was still raiding with Fannon at this time; steadily progressing his gear through ICC 10 and 25-man raids, but when I got home from work at night, the first thing I wanted to do was play on my Paladin. I blitzed through Outlands and Northrend to get to the level cap and jumped into heroics to start gearing up. Meanwhile, I was discovering and devouring every Paladin blog on the internet to learn how to best play him. The Priest was more and more becoming an afterthought.
The exact moment when Thosif became my
Main is unclear, and I certainly didn’t recognize it at the time. At some point I started asking for my somewhat undergeared Paladin to be included in our ICC runs. Oh, it was just Alt runs at first, of course, but soon I wanted to bring him into our progression runs as well instead of the Priest. It was Fannon who got Sindragosa down for the first time, but it was Thosif that killed the Lich King. It was in between those two events (which sadly happened a long time apart) that my Main switched, at least emotionally.
When Cataclysm dropped, I couldn’t wait to log onto Thosif and start levelling. Fannon is still sitting in Ironforge in 251 epics collecting the Rested XP bonus at level 80.
(or I Can’t Believe You Read This Far. Seriously.)
I would like to offer a bit of an apology to anyone who made it this far. One thing I wanted to avoid with this blog is a lot of pie-eyed ramblings about my characters and what they had for breakfast that day. I know a lot of people don’t find that kind of thing interesting, so I try to avoid it wherever I can. In this case, however, I thought a little history of my own experience with the Main-change would be relevant. I hope you found it interesting at least.
How do you define your
Main? Have you ever changed your Main? If so, at what point did you realise that it had changed, or was it a conscious choice?