I have played Wizard101 since the beginning. I've been here..since the beginning. I've stood by J. Todd Coleman in everything he did. I saw this the first day it was posted, and to be perfectly honest, I did cry a bit. I've put off writing a response for the sake of my sanity. But I felt it would be a good time to do so now.
In the beginning, I was a lowly, nooby webchatter named Blake Lionflame, who simply wanted to play a game and have fun. I struggled my way through Unicorn Way, barely scraping by. Then I found Triton Avenue. Being a Pyromancer, I had naturally low health. Paired with my young age, and inexperience at the game, I got my behind handed to me. But I was a stubborn child. So I kept going. And going. And going.
Eventually, I did beat that big jerk that I knew the Harvest Lord as. I begged my mother to buy me a subscription, wanting oh so badly to move on. Eventually, she did. And I got text chat.
"i need a girl"
"plz give me treasure cards"
Yes, even these people were around in the beginning. I slowly began making friends, and they helped me beat Wizard City. When I got that final wand hit on Nightshade, I was smiling like a doofus. What surprised me the most was seeing that little pet icon. My first pet. From Nightshade. Immediately, I equipped her.
I skipped off to the commons, and spoke to Merle. Off to Krokotopia I go.
This went on for each world, with the occasional pet drop. I kept making friends (Some of which I still talk to!), and I had the time of my life. You could say it turned into a bit of an unhealthy obsession for me. But I was ten, maybe eleven. I really didn't know any better.
Well, bye Blake Lionflame. That account was banned. (I'm a troublemaker, what can I say?)
I was crestfallen. All my hard work. All my pets. (Those Crown Dryad Boots from Mooshu!) It was hard to deal with. Sooner than I expected, however, I made a new account, and since I had all my old friends added on Facebook/*****/etc., I quickly found them and added them. So I started again.
Blake Wraith. Death this time.
And the whole shebang started over. Dragonspyre had come out in my time of Lionflame. So I had that to look forward to with Wraith. I did it again. I became obsessed.
Over the years, the game evolved. Crafting. Gardening. Improved pets.
And then, Celestia.
Oh Celestia. How I hated you. I barely managed to beat you. It was hard. Very, very hard. But the level cap, and new spells made it all the better. So I trudged on. And trudged on. And trudged on. The game had become much more of a chore than it had been fun. Eventually, I found ways to speak to people I truly cared about, and I closed Wizard101 for the last time.
I'm glad I had common sense. I've started a new account, this time a Life in Krok. The moral of this long and drawn out post?
J. Todd Coleman, I doubt you'll read this, but you are the most amazing game designer I have ever met. I myself am working on a game. And you have inspired me more than you will ever understand. Thank you for opening my eyes to video games, and changing my life.
Thank you for saving my life.
Thank you for reading, whoever did. I apologize for any grammar mistakes. I just woke up.