Psynister (the Person)
My name is Jason Griffith, and I am a computer programmer currently working for a company that builds explosives for the oil and natural gas industries. When I am not otherwise engaged I am typically found either in the various online social circles or logged in to
World of Warcraft Star Wars: The Old Republic (SWTOR) alongside my wife. I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, a Texan, and a non-affiliated conservative. If you’d like to take a glance at my ugly mug, take a look at the column to the right –>
Concerning online gaming: My name is Jason Griffith, and I am an alt-oholic.
Psynister (the Gamer)
I play a wide array of games and character types within those games. My first real introduction to video games came first in the form of the original Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) that my brother and I received for Christmas the year it was released.
My introduction to role playing games came in the form of Dungeons & Dragons from a 1st Edition AD&D Player’s Handbook that I found at a garage sale for $0.50 in 1991. My relationship with D&D has lived on strong from that point on. Shortly after that I had my introduction into collectible card games with Magic the Gathering, which I played for 9 years, and several others that had no lasting game time for me.
With the release of Diablo II, my introduction into a larger world of gaming began. While I had travelled across the state while participating in various Magic tournaments, I never knew just how large the gaming community actually was until I became involved with online gaming. Diablo II opened up that world to me and though I ventured off for short times into other games and developers, it was Blizzard’s product that appealed to me the most. I played Warcraft (I, II, & III) and Starcraft (I & II) as well, and enjoyed them all.
When World of Warcraft was first announced I was excited to get involved, but once I saw the monthly fee I refused to look any further and remained with Diablo II instead…until last year (2008). Through my wife’s business along with one of the couples that we go to church with, my wife found a good friend with many common interests and their friendship quickly grew. About the only thing that they did not have in common was that the friend spent a good deal of her time during the day “playing a computer game”. I had introduced my wife to Diablo II a few months before, so she laughed and asked which game she played as she admitted to being a gamer herself.
Her reply was somewhat shocking to me from what I knew about her, and to my wife as well, but World of Warcraft was the game. I had my reservations from before with the monthly fees, and my wife did as well after having “lost” a brother to EverCrack (EverQuest) and other online games. But, my wife reluctantly agreed to start up a 10-day trial and see what the game was like. It took her all of 30 minutes to call me into the room to check it out, which took about 5 minutes for me to go download it myself.
The next day we purchased two battle chests, opened our accounts, and the rest is history (in the making).
World of Warcraft
I started playing WoW in May 2008 as a Night Elf Hunter because I was told that the hunter was the easiest class to play and were a little overpowered so you did not have to worry about dying or anything. I got that character up to level 20 and then switched over to a different server to play a Troll Shaman that I got up to level 35 before calling it quits on him because of how little time I had to play and my level partners (my wife and her friend) had many more hours of game time than I did and were able to easily pull ahead of me.
After time freed itself up a bit more I went ahead and created an Undead Mage because I did not want to pick the shaman back up after so long without playing him. The mage’s name
is was Psynister and he reached level 80 around March of 2009 or so. Mage, necromancer, wizard, sorcerer, or its equivalent is typically the first character type that I go for in any game because they are usually the best and plowing through content in the shortest amount of time to show me what the game has to offer. I then use that character more for running other people through the game and collecting items for myself. Such is the case here as well.
When it all comes down to it, I am a paladin at heart. I want to be the big guy in the shiny armor, carrying the flaming sword. While I have many alts on the game, nearly every possible class/race combination, the paladin is the most enjoyable for me to play. I love being able to jump all over the world with my mage, but I really love just rounding up a screen full of mobs and tanking them all down to nothing but experience and drops. That being said, I don’t often play the Paladin class these days.
I find the most enjoyment in this game from leveling characters and participating in quests. While I am capable of running some end game content, I really do not find raiding to be my flavor of choice. I would rather grind and quest for four days than raid for four hours. Following grinding and questing, I do have some love for PvP. The game itself presents somewhat of a challenge, but once you figure out the puzzle the challenge goes away. When going against other players though, you never fully know what to expect. Sure, you know what the class can do and certain things you can expect and so forth, but a human can make decisions by itself where a computer cannot.
While I do I enjoy the challenge of PvP, I could take it or leave it and it would not bother me much at all. If you took out the ability to grind and quest though, I would drop the game. I really do not care for end game raiding strictly because at that point, to me, it stops being a game and becomes something more like unto a second job that you do not get paid for. I do not want to be in a raiding guild, I do not want to have to sign up to run a certain instance at a certain time, I want to just get online and play the game in whatever manner I wish.
Since this is what I love to do, this is what I intend to show people how to do on this blog – how to have fun leveling your characters. Where do you go to get the experience you need, where do you go to have the most fun leveling up, what classes are able to do what kinds of special leveling, and so on. I want you to be able to have the most fun you can while you play the game, not once you have “completed” the game and reached the end of it.
Many people will tell you that the game really does not start until you reach the maximum level. But for me, the maximum level is the end of the game and that is when it is time to roll a new character. I do not have anything to prove to anyone by getting the most amazing tier gear in the game, because it just does not matter to me. You can be proud to have over 1,000 hours worth of raiding time under your belt and for good reason, but I am just as proud to have 1,000 levels worth of alts and I can have just as much fun doing it.
[Update: 05/07/2012] As of roughly December 20, 2011 I am no longer actively playing World of Warcraft. Once I started playing SWTOR, I was hooked, and nothing WoW has put out in the last five months has made me want to return. I do intend to give Mist of Pandaria a shot to see if it can pull me back in, but I’m in the beta right now and really not enjoying it. Not that there’s anything wrong with what they’ve done with MoP from what I’ve experienced so far, but because the leveling and questing game has always been my focus, and after experiencing questing in SWTOR the world of WoW just seems incredibly dull and lifeless.
Star Wars: The Old Republic
This is my current game of choice, and likely to stay that way for a good long while. I’m currently trying to decide whether I want to write leveling guides for SWTOR like I did for WoW, or if I would rather stick to things like the Legacy system, Crew Skills, and Affection like I’ve been posting about for the last couple of weeks. Right now I’m not entirely sure which direction I want to go with the SWTOR blogging, so if I seem like I’m flailing a bit on topics it’s because I am.
My intention is to continue providing quality information and instruction to those who look for it. I’ve been told I have a knack for explaining things in ways that people can understand them, and I like to lay things out in detail to do just that. So that’s the plan for now, and we’ll see where we go from here.