Destinycloud, Abbi's roleplaying character on WOW. She's close to level 55 now. ( I had to say that ;)
OK, so lots of learning takes place while playing World of Warcraft. I guess I knew that. What I didn't know was how people learn different things. Or how different people find different things to do and learn with the same game.
Alec totally gets into the strategic side of things. He contemplates the armor he wears from the stats (attributes) it has, would it benefit his hunter's performance. He reasons with a very strategic mind.
Abbi, on the other hand, enjoys the game in a totally different way. Her way is a more imaginative way. She did start out on a regular realm. Meaning you talk to people just like you are,, a person at a computer. :) Yet, she quickly found out she liked a role-playing realm better.
When she picked her race,, what type of character she wanted, she picked an elf. She (and I) thought the elves looked pretty cool. And you get to be a druid as an elf. A druid is a cool class for several reasons. First off you get to turn into animals! :) How cool is that if you do role-playing??? You can turn into a bear, cat, porpoise type of thing , moonkin (which kind of looks like a bear standing up with horns) and now with the expansion introduced a healing druid can turn into a mystical tree. :-D The druid is a cool spiritual natural type being,, anyway, she and I were both drawn to the druids.
So, Abbi plays mostly on a role-playing server and has met many friends there. Its pretty interesting, I didn't really understand how it would work but here's how it does:
On your character you can indicate that you are a either a serious or casual role-player, also you indicate if you are looking for contacts. People can then send you a message or just start interacting with you. Some people will just start talking with you (in character,, of course ;), others will read about you if you have rsp. RSP is an add-on in which you can write up some type of description about your character.
An add-on is something you download to your game to enhance your game playing. Abbi's add-ons will help her to remember details about other people's characters or help others to read about her character, oh and one cool add on is she can click on something and it will change her whole outfit *g*. Of course Alec has that add-on too but he does it for different reasons, his armor changes would be for possibly fire resistance or frost resistance changes. Abbi's outfit changes would be ones like --her pretty purple dress or her all black outfit or her silly outfit. Alec also has some add-ons that help him with group play. He's doing raids now with up to 40 people and they all have to have add-ons to help them manage all the people. Examples of the use of add-ons in this case would be you can see everyone's health and mana, or you can see who is doing the most damage or who has the most aggro (aggro being the monster is attacking that person).
Back to role-playing. So someone may read your RSP and use that info, or they may just say something to you independent from that. They might totally bring up something random and you can just go with that. I had one person comment on my staff and I went into what I had done with it or how I found it,, some adventurous story. Its very much like improv. Abbi really gets into some elaborate storylines with other people. Where they'll even end up continuing it for days. There is also a way to talk to these people OOC (out of character) They just send messages like this ((this means I'm talking OOC)), so they can tell if they are still role-playing or meaning real life things.
This type of play really fills her need to act and create, its very cool.
Another way her creativity has flourished from WOW is writing on the role-playing forums. Right within WOW's website there are role-playing forums. Its where someone will start a story and then others can make contributions. Its also very cool. She loves to write very descriptively and loves reading other's writings. I've been amazed at her writing abilities. I never wrote anything like that until I was maybe in high school. She now types faster than me and can probably spell better than me. Which is also amazing to me because when she was 9, only 3 years ago she was asking me how to spell everything. Now I ask her *g*.
Some people have asked if its good for such a young girl to be interacting with others in a place like this. We can't say that she hasn't ran into some jerks. But there have been more nice, generous, fun people than the other. I have seen her handle people who make her feel uncomfortable and I've seen her modify what she does so she meets people who she'd like to play with. She now has a very good friend who she met through role-playing. This girl is the same age and is also a homeschooler. :) They've also gotten to know each other through IMing and their myspace spaces. She is very excited to hear about our unschooling. They have slowly been getting to know each other more and more. They don't divulge personal info very quickly, I've seen how this works. ( She's very choosy about what she shares with others.)
We've had nothing but good experiences with our WOW playing. Fun and learning abound!