Three Years of Xam Xam Says – Reflections and New Beginnings

Reflections

It’s hard to believe that it’s been over 3 years since I first started this Blog. It was at my peak consumption of Star Wars The Old Republic. I was addicted, obsessed. It was early 3.0. We had a variety of new content, the game was enjoyable and there was still fun to be had with my beloved APAC Guild, <Corvus>.

But it didn’t last. Things started to take a turn, for the worst. I got angry and frustrated at the game (and it reflected in the content I produced) despite still finding some enjoyment in it. The direction they were starting to take the game was troubling. The warning signs were there yet few seemed to notice. 4.0 was when it all went to shit. <Corvus> was on life support. None of the new group content we craved was on the horizon.

My Guild leaving the game is what finally broke my addiction. I took a break but still kept up to date on what was happening. But it wasn’t the same. It wasn’t life or death. The only thing that really kept me connected was my Boyfriend’s persistence at playing the game, despite its faults. He’s a diehard though. He’ll never stop. There were things I missed (mainly PvP) but for the most part, I was content to play other games.

I came back for 5.0. Despite not liking the new gearing system, at all. It was more for a bit of nostalgia and mild curiosity about the story (as much as I’ve loathed the direction they took it). I didn’t expect to stay around for long. But I did. Because of PvP. Because for the first time I didn’t feel rushed to get gear. I was fine in my pre 5.0 gear and for the first couple of months, PvP was exceptionally enjoyable for me. But then they fixed Bolster and gear mattered again. But by then I had managed to get enough gear from the horrid Galactic Command System grind that it didn’t matter anyway. So I continued to stick around.

Then things changed for the better. We got a new Game Producer with a far better vision for the game. But, the execution has been slow going. At this point, it seems likely that limited resources are to blame. But the game certainly isn’t dead. The Visercal debacle really drove home, to me, the reason SWTOR is still going. It makes money. A good enough profit for EA to keep it going. Especially considering the investment they put into new Servers and infrastructure, I don’t think the game is going to wither away anytime soon.

My Redgaurd Nightblade in ESO.

The Present

I’m once again at a point where I’m not logging in much, at all. Real life has been getting in the way (which is evident in my limited content creation) but so has motivation. There isn’t much reason for me to log into SWTOR anymore. I’ll log in for a couple of days for each new Game Update then inevitably get bored and go back to Elder Scrolls Online or WildStar. The content they’re bringing out at the moment isn’t enough to keep me engaged more long-term sadly.

There is always hope though. I have other games to play to keep my occupied where SWTOR can no longer deliver. The vision is right for SWTOR we just have to wait for them to deliver it. And there are plenty of other things for me to do while I wait.

I’m also lacking ‘commitment’ ie. a Guild but, I also don’t have the time for one (beyond a super causal one). It’s a frustrating debacle not having time for the very thing that would keep me more engaged with SWTOR (and the other MMO’s I play for that matter). But in a way, it’s a blessing. It allows me the freedom when I do get the time, to play what I want and do what I want. Usually on my own, sadly, but such is the nature of my current predicament. But now that the holiday season is coming to a close, real-life circumstances should improve for me. So there may be hope for me yet.

Iokath story on my Sentinel in SWTOR.

My Blogging and Writing Journey

I’ve learnt so much over the past couple of years not just about writing but also about gaming, the culture and the industry. I know there’s still so much more for me to learn. Learning more about the industry has, in particular, contributed to my patience with SWTOR and it’s predicament.

I’ve made mistakes with my writing and I like to think I’m learning from them (and there will always be more for me to learn). From my particularly angry outbursts in my early days, I learnt and realised that there are real-life people behind the games we love who make them work and keep them running for our entertainment. They deserve our respect and to be treated better. But that doesn’t mean we can’t criticise the games we love. But it can be done in a way that is constructive and not abusive to the individuals involved. With appreciation for their efforts but being understanding when the things we want cannot be done. It’s something I’m always mindful of when I write now, the people we don’t see who are there making all the things work.

I’ve also come to realise what my limits are when it comes to writing. That when I try and do too much for others, it wears me down, stresses me out and kills my motivation. I’ve also realised that competing with others who have more time and resources then I do, only lead to frustration and stress. But when I write for myself, to better myself and improve my craft in my own way, I feel so much more accomplished and proud of my efforts. So that is going to be my focus going forward. (It doesn’t mean I won’t ever write stuff you all may want me to write though).

I’ve learnt a fair bit about website creation and coding too. Which is certainly fun but also very, very frustrating (the coding part, that is). Some of you might have noticed that I have had issues with this site of late sadly which I have still not been able to fully resolve.

SWTOR has always been the main focus of my site. But, I have written stuff on occasion about ESO and WildStar. I hope to be able to (have the time to) produce more content about those games in the future as I thoroughly enjoy playing both of them.

Waiting for Scorchwing (World Boss) to spawn in WildStar.

Weaknesses and Obstacles

My biggest issue/weakness by far has been consistency in content delivery. They’ve been a few factors that have contributed to my ability and inability to produce content which I won’t discuss here. Needless to say, real life obligations get in the way a lot.

It is why my attempt to branch out beyond MMO’s failed. I simply didn’t have the focus or time to go beyond MMO’s as much as I wanted to. I’ve wanted to write more about Star Wars, in particular, for a very long time now. But finding it in me has been very difficult especially with there already being so many others who produce content about Star Wars. What would be the point in adding my voice to the chorus of thousands?

There is also one writing obstacle I have not been able to overcome. Fiction. I have for nearly my whole life wanted to write fiction. But, I am morbidly terrified of sharing it. I have so many stories and worlds that exist in my head that I just haven’t been able to put to paper. I have no motivation to write them down since I’m too scared to share them. I have no idea if I’ll ever be able to find it in me to overcome this silly fear I have. But alas, it is what it is.

My Marauder during the KOTET story in SWTOR.

A New Beginning

This will be my final post.

Yes, I have decided to close down this site. Partially because of the issues I’ve been having but also because honestly, I’ve never really liked the name of it anyway. Xam Xam Says rhyming with Simon Says. Yeah, it’s pretty lame. I guess it worked as a name for a Blog but not a Website.

But never fear, I have been working on a brand new Website! The holidays have given me the chance to clear my mind and think about what I want to do and more importantly, time. I have been thinking about making a new Website for a long time now and well, the stars aligned recently to allow it to happen.

The new Website will be more focused on MMO News and Guides (so yes, that will mean more non-SWTOR related content). But I will still do some Blog Posts. And yes, I’ve been moving all the existing Guides I have on here over to the new Site (as well as the half-finished ones, welp).

I’ve chosen to focus on just MMO’s for now as it, for me, is a more realistic goal given my current real-life predicament. I won’t be encompassing all MMO’s at this stage though. Just the ones I’m currently playing which are:

  • SWTOR
  • ESO
  • WildStar

You can expect me to launch my new Website within the next couple of weeks. I haven’t yet decided exactly when I’ll close this site down. But it will happen within a month or two at the most.

The new Yavin Ruins Warzone in SWTOR.

Thank You

I’d to thank all of you. Those who’ve been with me from the beginning and those who’ve more recently found me. For reading my crap. For all the social media likes and shares. And especially your kind and encouraging words. Your support no matter how great or small has meant the world to me and helped me keep going when times were tough. I’ve interacted with a lot of great people in the SWTOR Community and I hope to meet many more great people as I branch out to other communities (well as much as my shy, anti-social tendencies will allow)!

I hope you’ll join me for my next chapter.


 

 

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  • I’ll definitely be following you to your new site. I’ve enjoyed your thoughts and comments about Swtor and other MMOs. It will be fun to see where you go in the future.

    As far as fiction goes, it is one of those things where you just need to do it, release it, and hope for the best. Like any skill, your first works will be a foundation for improvement. It is scary to start, but if you don’t you’ll never get better. 🙂

  • Lorhin

    It will be different not having this blog around to browse, but I can’t wait to see your new website! 😀 Looking forward to it.