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Reader Comments (17)

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 8:09AM maniakmx said

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I'm currently a dispatcher for a local small Taxi service. I get to work at home and I usually spend my time working while play WoW. Sometimes I actually raid on an alt while answering the phones and dispatching my drivers, but usually I'm just grinding various achievement related activities!

This weekend though, I'll be playing SWotR beta!

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 10:58PM maniakmx said

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@maniakmx

Gonna reply to myself, but I received a very sad e-mail today, the testing for SWotR has been postponed :( Which is very sad because after December 7th I'll be spending a lot more time on WoW and probably won't want to spend any time beta testing SWotR. :(
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Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 8:15AM Dblade said

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EVE. In-game browser. Tvtropes.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 8:32AM timthel0rd said

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Dual monitor. Facebook/Formspring/Videos while I'm playing any game.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 8:36AM benfoldsarmy said

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I think I'n sort of an oddity. Currently, I'm running around on WOW leveling alts, playing the auction house, and doing gathering runs while mining Ice in EVE online. Pretty much just waiting for some skills to finish up in EVE so I can fly my Tech 3 ship, but an easy way to pad the wallet without much effort is to Ice mine, even though the prices are way down. I almost always multitask when playing MMOS, but it's always with playing another MMO!

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 9:21AM UnknownUser said

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@benfoldsarmy

EVE is the ultimate multitasking game. There's so much of it that doesn't require more than a passing glance at the monitor every now and again. Autopiloting through hisec, mining, missioning with a drone boat etc. Not to mention training is going on whether we're in the game or not.

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Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 8:41AM Grumms said

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Absolutely.

Whether it be browsing forums, Facebook, or just watching YouTube. Sometimes I'll just completely forget that I'm even on a game.

Texting during FPS' is dangerous. I don't condone it.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 8:48AM Svenn said

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I play games on a desktop PC with a laptop next to me on the desk. I typically have up my email, some forums, and maybe some other stuff up on the laptop. I'm not always paying attention to the laptop though. If I'm doing anything much more than farming something I tend to focus my full attention on the game.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 9:02AM gildhur said

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Always have a browser and Trillian open unless I'm doing serious raiding. When I'm traveling or crafting or anything that doesn't require my undivided attention, I'm browsing. I always play windowed to make the alt-tab faster.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 9:49AM Sorithal said

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Yep, I always have Firefox open. Sometimes that's a bad thing when I forget about the fact that I have WoW or another online game running xD Sometimes I'll watch videos, other times I'll browse forums, read guides, cruise lolbot or whatnot, etc.

Then there's Microsoft Live Messenger as well. I have plenty of distractions >.>; Probably explains why I've been leveling more slowly on WoW lately.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 9:52AM Jeromai said

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Dual monitors. Browsing Massively in the other window, or other MMO blogs, or third party wikis or forums related to the particular MMO that is on the main screen.

Or now and then, dual MMOs. It helps if one of them is more primitive and takes a long time to do anything, and the other is one of the theme-parky types. I was just messing with WoW and Wurm Online the other day. Managed Guild Wars and ATITD. Two ATITD clients. Or an MMO and a simpler game (Kongregate, Kingdom of Loathing, Minecraft, Recettear or a roguelike like Angband or TOME.)

Just need to have games which have downtime, and safe places to pause and not get massacred while paying attention to the other screen.

I've also managed running a DVD movie on the other screen while farming missions mindlessly in City of Heroes. That was more of a need to keep mind amused while fingers worked on automatic, than a need to keep busy while game-enforced micro-downtime (progress bars, in-game travel or other timesinks) takes place though.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 10:36AM Carolina said

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I play MMOs to relax, so I just play the game and avoid multitasking like I have to at work. When some timesink event starts, like traveling or looong automatic crafts, I'll generally tab out to check on twitter/email or go do something around the house.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 10:53AM 38Watch said

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I'm an insane multitasker, all the live-long day. Moreso since I've implemented the dual-monitor setup. I've grown very fond of video podcasts and Netflix streaming, during rep grinds. I've even got to the point where I can knock out some Econ homework, whilst raiding ICC.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 11:02AM Lateris said

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I play AoC and Eve Online at the same time on PC's. And work. on my work laptop.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 11:35AM Irem said

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If I'm not multitasking, I'm probably dead.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 1:10PM Valdamar said

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I used to do plenty of multitasking in original EverQuest - that game has such extensive downtimes and timesinks that I would watch DVDs & TV and read novels while playing it - and quite often phone one of my friends and hold a conversation while playing (and holding conversations in-game). I still tend to watch TV while playing MMOs (or alternatively I'll have some music playing), as they're not all that immersive and the slower gameplay certainly doesn't require as much concentration as, say, an FPS or RTS title.

I also tend to alt-tab a lot and browse the net when I have to wait for someone/something in-game - quite often I read Massively articles while playing. I'm finding Steam's browser quite handy at the moment, as I added Guild Wars to Steam as a non-Steam game just so that I could use Steam overlay in it - that way I can browse the net in Steam while also still able to see what's going on in my chatbox and around my character in GW. I'll probably see if it works in CoH too the next time I go back to play that. Admittedly while I was farming up some stuff in GW the other day I switched to windowed mode so I could watch some Zero Punctuation videos in a window alongside GW, at the same time as I was editing a document in another window - it's probably the first time I've been grateful for a click-to-move option in an MMO as it did reduce the amount of switching back to GW I needed to do.

I'll be going dual PC again soon though (for the first time since 2002 when I quit EverQuest, after dual-boxing in it for 2 of my 3 years there) and while I don't plan to dual box in MMOs I do suspect my multitasking will increase while playing MMOs as I'll have two monitors attached to separate PCs in front of me, so I can surf the web without needing to alt-tab - the second PC's monitor (a 24inch one I bought recently) will also become my TV as I'm going to plug my Sky+HD satellite TV box through it. Though I suspect I will be highly tempted to play some strategy games like Civ 4+5 on one PC while logged into an MMO on the other.

Tbh there are just too many things I want to read/watch/play for me to waste time just doing one thing at a time. A TV program or film needs to be really enthralling or deep for me to focus on it solely, and it's the same with MMOs - most MMOs, like most TV programmes and films nowadays, are lightweight enough that they don't need my full attention. But when something is good enough I don't multitask and it gets my full attention.

But honestly I really wish the gameplay and worlds of MMOs were more fully immersive and enthralling, and dangerous, so I didn't want to multitask while playing them - and wouldn't be able to safely. MMORPGs should be more fully immersive than FPS games, but it's the latter that fully absorb my attention and entire being while I am in their world. I wish there was an MMO that did the same for me.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2010 1:54PM cowboyhugbees said

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This is a fascinating idea to me. I like the podcast idea, especially... I'll have to try that. I've heard of people making their own "soundtracks" when the game music gets stale too (which is rapidly approaching for me).

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