Applying Minimalism to the World of Warcraft: My first steps

When I began floating the idea of applying minimalism to the World of Warcraft experience, I had very little idea what it entailed. I knew that my interest in the game was waning. Anytime I logged in I was feeling overwhelmed by the options in front of me. I wanted to be playing the game. I just didn’t know how anymore. Something had to change which is why I decided to look for a solution.

In my day-to-day life minimalism has brought me many positive outcomes. Through decluttering, I have less to worry about, less to clean and less to maintain. By removing the unnecessary, I can focus my time on what matters to me and move forward without being concerned I should be doing something else. I can set a plan of how I want my life to look and make intentional decisions. Limiting the things in my life to only those that matter means I am no longer tied down by any misplaced attention.

Days become more enjoyable. Each action is intentional. My ability to adjust is greater since I do not have as much on the go.

These are all things I want in my World of Warcraft life.

Minimalism in Azeroth

Step one: Declutter

I started by looking at the number of characters I had across all realms. I ended up with 31 characters on nine different servers. (When you take out Bladefist, it is 19 across eight).

  • 17 Characters Deleted

The first character I deleted was for an Ironman challenge I know I would never finish. Another was a female dwarf hunter I made “just because.” Many of the characters removed were on servers I never played and where I made one just in case. Never hang on to things just in case, including World of Warcraft characters

  • 25k gold given away by deleted characters

One of the characters created, and now deleted, was to help another player with game time. This character gave away 12k worth of gold to a random player before going away permanently. Another character donated 8k to a random lowbie. The remaining 5k, spread across multiple characters, was also given away to random players.

  • One faction change

My shaman always felt neglected. I enjoyed playing the class, but with the character being Alliance, I never logged into her. So I made the decision to faction change her to Horde.

I put the new race to a Twitter poll. Asylisi went from Draenei to Troll thanks to Twitter. The best part? Gold made in-game thanks to the WoW Token and BattleNet credit paid for the change.

I now have a more manageable slate of 14 characters. One of each class at level 100 or higher, a second hunter (who is my leatherworker) and a name placeholder character on Kul Tiras. Nothing superfluous. Every character has a purpose and a reason to be on the roster.

Step Two: Plan

With the character situation under control, I set out to create my ideal leveling outline. I have three characters at 110, Hunter, Demon Hunter and Mage. With 7.2 on the horizon, I have a few characters I know I want to reach max level and obtain their class mounts.

  1. Warlock (Inscription)
  2. Shaman
  3. Death Knight (Enchanter/Alchemist)
  4. Forsaken Hunter (Leatherworker)
  5. Paladin (Blacksmith/Engineer)

This also means other characters will no longer be played. I am calling this step archiving. Archiving includes a decluttering of each character — clearing out mail, gold, and bank items to create a clean character. The following characters will be archived and returned to active play only after I complete the list above.

  1. Monk
  2. Warrior
  3. Druid
  4. Priest
  5. Rogue

Along with the leveling plan, I want to maintain my gold making on the Mage. The decision I made is that AH play will only happen in the morning with coffee. This gives me a set time to know when I am in the AH and can play the market accordingly. When it comes to Broximar(Hunter) and Ximara (DH), I get to play them again when 7.2 drops.

Step three: Adjust

Well, the plan went off the rails in week one. The idea for this weekend was to level the Warlock, but Blizzard decided to drop the Spirit of Eche’ro archaeology questline. Making an adjustment for a ghost moose made sense to me. I may have stopped chasing mount drops until the leveling plan is complete, but the new questline fit into the following set of criteria:

  • Simple to acquire
  • Known end date
  • Relatively small time commitment

After unearthing 228 pieces during the week, I spent Saturday night on Twitch finishing off the quest. What ended up happening was one of my favorite streams in months — great conversation, good company and relaxed.

It never felt like a chore to obtain the moose. It was a great feeling. I missed it. But, it is now complete. Time to return to the program set out above — until I need to adjust again.

After taking a critical look at how I want to spend my gaming time and following it up with this project to be more intentional with my time in World of Warcraft, I am excited to see where this goes next. I have some ideas which will trickle out over time, but for now, I will just enjoy my time in Azeroth once again.

For the Horde!

This originally appeared February 20th, 2017 on