Look Ma, I’m a Professional Gamer Now!
Back when I played World of Warcraft (to the dismay of my parents) I ran a little guild called the AAMS. That stood for “All Azeroth Messaging Service” (Azeroth is the fictional world in which the game takes place; the name has since been updated to “Anytime & Anywhere Messaging Service” to reflect the game’s addition of other, non-Azeroth worlds where the Messaging Service also goes). The AAMS was and is an anomaly in the storyline of Warcraft: rather than being dedicated to one side or the other in the perpetual war between “Horde” and “Alliance” factions, it works for both as neutral couriers, trying to help people construct diplomatic solutions and reduce in-game combat.
Yesterday the guild, which is still around, had its 15 minutes of internet fame in a write-up by WoW Insider, gaming-news company Joystiq’s Warcraft-specific blog.
Obviously, I’m entertained and, to my chagrin, even a little proud. I did not found the AAMS (that honor goes to a friend of mine from high school, who got me into Warcraft in the first place and enabled the habit shamelessly for years), but I did help it transition from an informal group to a registered guild, and I oversaw the creation of an “Alliance Branch” faction that proved vital to the guild’s primary business of trade and translation between the warring factions.
It was a good time and a testimony to my perpetual contrary streak (the game says “fight your enemies,” I say “let’s end the war”). I’m glad to see other people kept it going in much the same vein, even keeping some of the traditions I remember in practice (like an annual, in-game “Armistice Day” celebration of an earlier treaty between the Horde and Alliance). It’s been a good five or six years since I had a hand in the guild, so quite a few people must have worked very hard to keep it going and get it noticed by WoW Insider.
And now that my guild’s made the news I’m a “professional gamer,” right? Mom and Dad must be so proud.