Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Growl if you love Loki

I'm not entirely sure why it is, but I love Ragnarok - the cutesy, level-grinding Korean MMORPG loosely based upon Norse mythology. I say loosely because Ragnarok has virtually no story and no character development. The leveling rate is so low that you can spend hours crushing the same monster before you progress, and the drop rate is so pathetic that you could easily farm the same creature for days before finding any worthwhile equipment. Oh yes, and it's pay-to-play.

With all these restrictions, it's difficult to understand why anyone would play Ragnarok Online. So off I go to pursue truly genre-defining pastimes like Mass Effect, only to return to Ragnarok several months later. Is it the unbearably cute chibi characters? (Probably) Is it the fond memories I have of playing private servers, where the leveling rates were high enough for me to achieve some level of proficiency? (That too) Somehow, somewhere, this game grew on me. It's just inexplicably lovable. Try it. You'll see.

I recently returned to International Ragnarok Online's (iRO) Loki server after nearly a year MIA. My stalwart Knight was still there (truly, one of the benefits of the official game servers are their consistency over time), and he was still a paltry level 76. And as I got back into the swing of things, I attempted to recruit some of my friends to play along. Ragnarok is not a game to be visited solo. I achieved some mild success wooing my male peers to the cause, all of whom balked once they realized that they would actually have to pay to play. As I discussed the game with J-Rock one day, one of our colleagues overheard our conversation...

K: Level 80? What are you guys talking about? Some kind of video game?

J-Rock: Yeah, that's right.

K: What's it called?

J-Rock: Rwarwarwarwarwarwar...

K: What?!

J-Rock (already bolting for the stairs): That's what it's called!

K: That's not a name, you just growled!
Apparently the name Rag-na-rok (3 syllables) was a bit too complicated for J-Rock, despite my incessant hounding.

Now for the past week, I've been struggling with a relative lack of success in essay writing for my Community Health course. This may shock you, since I unload a veritable verbal diarrhea upon this blog virtually everyday - but writing a comprehensive essay with literature citations is a much more deliberative (and less attractive) exercise. In order to distract me from my attempts at productivity, Ruru (the same Ruru that plugged me into iRO to begin with) introduced me to Restaurant City, a time-consuming Facebook game... and countless man-hours have been lost as a result. Since then, I've been on a massive recruitment drive in order to get free ingredients for my own restaurant that are available upon visiting a friend's restaurant for the first time. Like Ragnarok, this recruitment drive eventually found its way to J-Rock:

Andy: You should play Restaurant City... I've killed so much time on it.

J-Rock: Oh yeah, that's the game you were telling me about!

Andy: You mean Ragnarok?

J-Rock: Oh right, that's the one. They're all too similar.

Andy: You mean they all sound like Rwarwarwarwarwar...?

The moral of the story? Play iRO Loki and Restaurant City with me, pl0x.


Joyce said...

You make me sound like such a bad guy! xD;;;

I just wanted to take someone down with me, really. :D

P.S. Still don't feel like iRO-ing! I think it is the pay-to-play aspect that's turning me off right now. If only they'd offer me a free week or something. :P

sandlot said...

.... is this like restaurant city? I guess you left one addiction and moved onto another one (one that seems less strange at least).

I think you should just stick to shooting things. lol.