I used to raid…a lot. Four to five nights a week, three to five hours a night I was in that dungeon fighting the big, bad dragons and monsters. In Vanilla, BC, and half of Wrath it was this way. Many years of my life were spent in World of Warcraft raiding.
What about now? I am a casual. In Wrath, I was a founding member of a 10-man “hardcore” guild, but we only raided two nights a week. It was not that demanding. Before Patch 4.2 released, I decided to stop raiding because of other, real-life, responsibilities. I have not raided a thing since T11 content.
I went from one extreme to the other, and I’m happy that I’m just a casual now. I certainly cannot gripe about Blizzard basically handing out gear and Valor points when I am taking full advantage of the system.
All my hardcore friends say, “How can you play that still? It’s terrible. They ruined end-game.” All my casual friends say, “Eh… we just hang out and do whatever, raid sometimes.” I fit somewhere in between this.
While, Blizzard did change the end-game in an unfavorable way (in my personal opinion), I like the fact that I do not have to adhere to the hardcore schedule. I enjoy living my real-life now. Frankly, I am ashamed of how many hours, nights, and years I devoted to this game.
I can really say that I’m in a good place with the game right now. I’m living the casual lifestyle, while still treating end-game in my old, hardcore ways (just because I’m casual doesn’t mean I have to be bad too).