“Oh man. I had to spend four hours last night studying for my chem test, and then I had a huge Spanish assignment.”
“I know what you mean. I had to kill like, fifty boars-“
“Er, I said I studied for like, 50 boring hours last night.”
I felt guilty trying to explain to my friends trudging through the premed course path that while they were pouring over textbooks, I was playing an online game. I shouldn’t, but I do. I mean I know how tedious the games can get. The act of transcribing the experience to another student, however, doesn’t convey the same feeling.
In reality, playing online games for homework is just like any other piece of homework in that it’s required, you have to be on a certain pace, and you have to make connections back to your experiences later in class. Just like my friends who are “Mastering Chemistry” (a computer/online based system of chemistry lessons and homeworks), my success is dependent on my ability to use the game mechanics presented, have time to sit at my computer and work, and be able to connect to the internet. Without those three abilities, neither Mastering Chemistry nor LOTRO (or in this case, blog posts; sorry!) can be tackled promptly. Granted, I would much rather play an online game like Lotro rather than memorize the steps of glycolysis. However, I know people who honestly feel the exact opposite.
And yeah, there are times I’ve played LOTRO rather than do something more enjoyable like a swim workout or play football with the guys in my house. But that’s just the way that homework works. Whether online gaming or online chemistry, it’s really not very different once you’ve experienced a quest that takes you 30 minutes of walking to find, 15 minutes of mashing the 1 and 2 keys, and a 10 minute trek back… only to lead to a similar quest as a follow-up.
By Colin Doberstein
As the title suggests, today’s post topic is how LOTRO has given me an excuse to not do anything more productive than kill virtual boars. Normally the guilt factor of playing a computer game instead of doing my homework allows me to stop playing and do my Chinese homework. Now that I’m in a class that assigns LOTRO as homework, however, that excuse goes out the window. Now, instead of doing my reading for Western Military History, I can say to myself: “Well, I have to play LOTRO at some point too. So why don’t I get that done now and do the boring stuff later?” The obvious problem is that when a hobbit urgently asks you to kill twenty-four wolves in the Old Forest, it just wouldn’t be right to keep him waiting. Twenty-four dead wolves later, it’s bedtime, and all my homework not in MMO form (which unsurprisingly includes every other assignment I have) will have to wait until tomorrow.
For someone who is already the paragon of inefficiency and poor time management (the virtues championed by me in the little-known seventh book of the Faerie Queene), giving them any excuse to play a video game instead of doing their other work is a recipe for many late nights. This is obviously entirely my fault, but playing LOTRO this semester has probably cost me at least ten hours of sleep, maybe more. Basically, playing a computer game for homework further exacerbates the time management issues that already plague people such as myself because we can justify spending all night playing instead of just reaching the weekly benchmarks (why would I study chemistry? I have to level up so I can go to Weathertop!). This is not so much a gaming issue as it is a laziness issue, but I had to mention it because now that we have to play Neverwinter Nights 2 in addition to LOTRO, the likelihood of me ever finding time to post here again is slim. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I only have to kill another 100 goblins before I finish my next deed. Time is wasting.
By: Sam Fisher
Playing LOTRO has not affected my life to a great extent. The game merely fills a slot in my routine homework schedule. It is hard to play a game for fun when playing it for work already. Maybe if I had less to do it would be a more ideal game. It is fun, but one becomes much more aware of time when playing a game for homework.
LOTRO does serve as a bragging point for the seminar. I get to tell my friends that I am leveling up my elf champion and leveling out of apprentice crafting. It is a situation to be envied, as I can feel no guilt playing a game. It is a nice way to fill a slot of my homework time. The game is one reason why people are jealous of my membership in the Worlds of Wordcraft writing seminar. This is the only time game play would come up in conversation with friends. Other than that, the game has not really been mentioned or prominent in have adverse effects on my life.