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2.18.2012

The "One Month, One Toon" Challenge


I'm what you might call an "alt-aholic". I love toons. Toons, toons and more toons. I have ten level 85 characters on my main server. I have far more than ten alts of various levels scattered over various servers. IN gold-making it is often very advantageous to have such a set up. Having multiple toons with multiple professions is a very solid strategy.

There is something, however, that I think I may have lost in my race to "have all the toons" and that is focus. Perhaps it is all the time I've been spending in Outlands reminiscing about "the good old days". Perhaps it is seeing people struggle to make gold with just one or two characters.

Mainly I just want to feel the way I did about a singular character the way I did in The Burning Crusade. Whatever the reason, I've decided to create what I am calling the "One Month, One Toon" Challenge. Read on past the jump to see how I'll be spending my next 30 days in World of Warcraft.

The Why

So first off the "why" of the challenge. The main reason I am choosing to artificially restrict my self is to try experience what it is like to focus solely on one character, one set of professions and one chunk of play time.

While this isn't necessarily a gold-making challenge, I do think the time spent in the next month will help me learn more about what it is like to make gold when you are limited to just a few professions and are able to focus on them exclusively.

That said, you don't have to be a gold-maker to partake in this challenge. Indeed the challenge has no criteria other than to experience what it is like to have a singular character you play for an entire month.

The Challenge

The "One Month, One Toon" Challenge consists of playing only one single character on my main server for 30 days straight.

The Rules of the Challenge

The following are the rules I will be following for the next 30 days, starting February 18, 2012 and ending March 18, 2012. These are my rules. Feel free to tailor them to yourself as long as you stick to the spirit of the challenge. I reserve the right to change the rules or simply give up and quit like a little baby at any time.

Preparation

I am allowed 24 hours from the beginning of the "One Toon, One Month" Challenge to prepare all of my other toons on my main server for "cold storage" for the month. This includes:

  • Cancelling all current auctions as well as not putting any new auctions up.
  • Mailing any items I want my main character to have for the month including items to be auctioned off, used in any way, etc.
  • Clearing out all main in their mailboxes.
  • Adding any items to a guild bank that my main toon has access to for the month.
  • Sending any gold that my main toon will use to my main toon.
  • Doing anything else that may be required for 30 days of not being able to log in.
I will also allow for "emergency" access to my alts in the case that someone (other than myself) needs something that only my alt can give them/provide etc. Basically alts are not to be touched unless there is a very VERY good reason. (Guild master duties, guild bank maintenance, etc.) Since I am only in a guild with myself and my wife this shouldn't happen.

Alternate Server Exemptions 

I am allowed to play characters on servers OTHER than my main server under a few strict conditions:
  • If I am leveling up a character that my wife asks me to level with her I am allowed to play a character on another server. This is for leveling only and I am not allowed to make gold on that off-server alt.
  • If I am asked to play with off-server friends on off-server alts I am allowed to play with them. I am not allowed to use these alts for gold-making purposes.
  • If there is another compelling reason such as recording a livestream of an event for a friend of helping a reader on their server I am allowed to make/play a character on an different server from my main. However these alts are to be used for the specific purpose they are intended and not at any other times.
  • I am not allowed to log onto purely gold-making alts on any other server. The same "cold-storage" preparation and conditions as stated above for my main server alts apply to off-server gold-making alts.
  • I am allowed to log onto off-server alts that are guild-leaders of off-server guilds to socialize and perform guild maintenance like guild invites, guild permissions, guild conflict resolution, etc. I am not allowed to level these toons or use them for gold-making. Only what is required to maintain the guild properly.


Alternate Character Exceptions 

The following are reason that I will allow for logging onto main-server alts:
  • Producing content for the Power Word: Gold blog including, but not limited to, taking screenshots, looking up professions recipes, testing theories, etc.(As long as it is really for a post and not just "messing around".)

The Main Server Rules

The following are the main server rules I will be following. These are the most important part of the challenge for me. This will determine how effective the challenge will be at simulating a "single-toon" experience. 

For some players (those who only have a few toons) this part of the challenge may seem like child's play. To a player like me however, who has had so many alts for so long, this will be the hardest part. Here are the most important rules:
  • I am only allowed to log into my main character on my main server for the entire 30 days of the challenge. All other characters essentially do not exist. Pretend they disappeared. Gone. Poof. Bye bye. 
  • I am allowed to perform any sorts of gold-making that I can using only my one character. If I need something crafted, smelted, enchanted etc. I will have to find another player to help me. This may be a guild member, a friend, etc.
  • Anything I can do on my toon, I should do on my toon. This may include finishing up achievements, doing archaeology, PVPing, Dungeons, LFR, gold-making, farming old instances, etc. I really need take advantage of the fact that I will only be playing a single toon for the entire month and will have lots of time with the toon.
  • Take time to learn the professions that this character has. In my case my hunter has Engineering and Enchanting. Having more time to explore them should give me some great additional insights into the professions that I simply had the time to learn because I've never been able to focus so much. I'm looking forward to exploring my recipe books and digging for new ways to make gold with them.
  • Spend time going back to places in the world you I have forgotten about, or not been to in a while. Take time to stop and smell the roses.
  • Enjoy myself. I have much more time to devote to my character now. This challenge, while intended to be challenging, is also intended to be enjoyable.
  • If I freak out and can't stand doing the challenge any more, give it a few days and then I can quit and/or modify my challenge.

TL:DR

I'll be playing the game as if I only have one character for 30 days and learning all I can from the experience.

Conclusion

So this is what I'll be doing starting today. I expect that today will be a bit busy getting all my alt's auctions cancelled and a few items shuffled into various places and banks (mostly my mogging stock). After that I don't really know what to expect.

It has been literally years since I only had a single character to care about/focus on. I'm actually looking forward to getting started. As the month goes on I will be providing updates as to how the challenge is going. Most likely you will hear plenty about it and if you watch my livestreams see plenty of my hunter in the next month.

Are you up to the Challenge?

Are you swimming in alts? Does the "One Month, One Toon" Challenge sound like something you'd be interested in participating in? If so let me know in the comments below. I'd love to hear about your experiences as you go throughout 30 days only playing one single character. 

If you don't have a blog and would like to write about the gold-making aspects of your experiences during your "One Month, One Toon" Challenge, you might consider submitting your posts to The Power Word: Gold Hatchery. Details on how to submit posts to The Hatchery are included on the site.


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13 comments:

  1. i bet this will help with your storage issue for the next month too.

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    1. I hope so. I plan to use some of the extra time to FINALLY clean/organize our guild bank.

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  2. I'm taking up the challenge; I too play a hunter a my main. We'll see how this plays out for me as well :)

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    1. I have my post here http://focushot.info/blog/month-toon-challenge.html Which anyone can check out. I'll also likely be doing hopefully some livestreams of my game play as well as weekly updates and other posts related to my challenge.

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  3. Good luck on it but I really dont get the purpose. The advantage of multiple toons is to be able to have items you need made for you with your multiple professions. I dont see what is wrong to use another toon even if it is for gold making.

    Most of my guild wouldnt take kindly to me doing this as i like to craft people anything they need so they dont have to hit the AH.

    Nothing wrong with how you were playing unless you think there was.

    I will say I have always had my main character who I do everything with except selling on the AH. Yet at the same time I have a second raiding level character and these days with the ease of LFR I have three other well geared toons. I stopped doing heroics on my characters and just did lfr on a character that I wanted to gear up. My main toon has over 10k achievement points but just does his weekly raid. He is and will always be my focus. Everything else is a sideline including my gold making. I do what I think is fun. Sure I have more gold than most....nearing the 4mil mark....but that is just one small sideline of what I do. Gold making was only a purpose when I first tried to hit the old 214k gold cap. Otherwise I just enjoy playing wow.

    Have fun.

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    1. As with any of these "artificial restriction" challenges/playstyles for me, it is about pushing me out of my comfort zone.

      There was nothing inherently wrong with how I was playing it's just that I wanted to see what it would be like to only play on one character again like I did in TBC. To see how doing that might change how I play.

      As far as gold-making I will likely learn much mroe about the Eng and Ench markets over the next month as I only have them and flipping to make gold.

      I like to play in wacky playstyles sometimes. Keeps things fresh.

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  4. That looks great and I wish you well but this alt-oholic isn't ready for Step 1 yet.

    I've sworn to similar type plans for myself because I thought I was "doing something wrong" by not having that focus you describe, but finally I realized that its a game and this is how I play it. My attention span lasts about a week per char.

    My goal for this expac is 10 level 85 characters and all professions maxxed. I'm just shy of 5 85's and the rest late-70's and early 80s. I have Eng, LW, and BS left to cap.

    I've played since vanilla off and on and this has been the most fun I've had because I'm no longer trying to conform to the herd's way of playing. I've never been on a raid. I rarely PvP, and I rarely enter heroic dungeons. My focus is on leveling alts, making gold, and exploring new things in the game.

    I have an RAF bonus to finish up so that puts a damper on things too - actually maybe I should commit to my one pair of characters I'm dual-boxing for the month of RAF I have left.

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    1. I found myself just surfing from alt to alt and not really ever digging into any one character.

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  5. Um... so why not start a new character on a NEW SERVER, if you really want to get the feel of "new character"? Sorry, but if you say, "I can get stuff together for this new character, who has access to the guild bank, access to other stuff, etc etc etc", then you're not really leveling a "new character", you're leveling a "new alt", and there's a GRAND CANYON of difference between the two.

    My first toon a friend sent me a couple of 12-slot bags and 5 gold. I just started my 8th toon, day one he gets: Head, shoulders, chest and cloak, embersilk bags, 500 gold.... NOT THE SAME THING.

    I respect what you do on this site, but this is just.... bad.... New server, new toon, or call this what it is: Leveling an alt for 30 days straight

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    1. This challenge was never intended to be a "leveling" challenge. I have too many important things I need to do with my toon (blog, podcast, videos, livestreams) that starting all over again and only playing that was never even in my mind. As I explain in the post it was about consolidating all my play time onto one character.

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