My favorite part of most of the MMOs that I’ve played was fishing. A lot of people would probably find it boring, but I thought it was a great way to relax. Later, I even listened to audiobooks while watching for the line to bob. It was a great way to remain focused on the present moment and what I was listening to. Or, sometimes I would just enjoy the ambient music in the game.
I first fished in Final Fantasy XI. A Japanese player named Tsubakichi “adopted” me and gave me a fishing rod and bait and taught me to cook bait to use for fishing. My first fishing hole was a small pond in Ronfaure, I think it was called, outside Sandoria.
Something about the quietness of it is calming, especially if the zone you’re in has great ambient music, followed by a small thrill when you get a catch, wondering what RNG decided to put on your line.
I also did a lot of fishing in FFXIV prior to Heavensward. I even had the special fishing rods and stuff from achievements. I think I lost track of fishing because I got caught up in the level grind that was part of the expansion. I think the fact that there were so many daily grinds in the game that there was no time to do anything fun was what caused me to stop wanting to play the game. Well, that and real life commitments. It’s harder to keep up with level and gear grinds when you have other responsibilities.
I suppose that’s the bigger issue, and I kind of wish there was an MMO where if you wanted to be a fisher main, or crafter main, you could actually do that without having to level up a combat job as well. With FFXIV, you have to level up a combat job and progress through certain parts of the main story so that you can do gathering or crafting jobs in relevant zones. It’s a bit of a drag if that’s not what you’re interested in.
It has been over a decade since I played Ultima Online, but from what I remember, the game didn’t have levels in the way that modern MMOs do, and it was entirely possible to just run around gathering stuff all the time. Maybe that’s looking back through rose colored glasses. I don’t know, but I just wish I could find a game that suited my interests again.
Most combat jobs in MMOs are boring anyway. The last time I really enjoyed a combat class was in Dark Age of Camelot. I played a Bard. The implementation of the Bard as a mesmerizer, stunner, and stat regenerator, along with actual music being played was amazing. It just somehow really suited my tastes and capabilities.
I’m playing Fallout 76 now and there isn’t any fishing in the game. I’m not sure that I’d want to go fishing in Appalachia, though. Who knows what irradiated monstrosities I’d dredge up.