The Entry Stage
There are two main entry clusters. The first cluster is the typical new-comer who generally describes their game-play in terms of unlimited potential and the euphoria of being in a whole new world. Oftentimes, elements of advancement and exploration are repeated throughout their descriptions, but in general these early play styles tend to be undifferentiated and more driven by novelty rather than a focus on achievement (for example).
Originally, the motivation for playing the game spawned from the novelty factor and sheer size of the world to explore ... something new around every corner ... new discoveries, new races or classes to try out, new quests / zones / instances ... [WoW, M, 31]
When I started playing (this was my first MMORPG by the way), I was content to run around questing with my little pink-haired gnome mage. I though she was so cute, and collecting those 8 boar ribs and 4 bear pelts was so much fun! [WoW, F, 25]
What has always drawn me to video games has been the prospect of entering an entirely new universe. I've always loved figuring out the new battle system, trekking across the new landscape, or taking part in some new story. [WoW, F, 17]
Playing with a Friend/Partner
The second main entry cluster revolves around playing the game to be with a friend or a romantic partner. Players in this category typically state that being with their friend/partner, rather than playing the game itself, is their primary motivation. More often than not, this changes as they experience more of the game.
My initial motivation in buying the game and playing it was to spend time with real life friends who had become obsessed with World of Warcraft. We used to chat online every night and they all disappeared into the game. Buying it myself was the only way I could talk to them online! [WoW, F, 37]
I started playing WoW mostly as a chance to reconnect with college gaming friends of mine, since we were all in the military and separated over great distances. [WoW, M, 29]
I started to play World of Warcraft because my boyfriend got me a Beta account and got me interested in it. We were searching for an activity we could do together over the internet since we have to overcome a large distance and don't see another often in real time due to this. We got my brother and a friend of us interested in the game as well and played together since that time. So the main motivation at the beginning was to do something together, spend time with another and have fun. [WoW, F, 23]
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