My fingers keep hitting against every keyboard input; sometimes, I fear that I’ll be pressing the buttons so hard, a bunch of they keys will suddenly go flying and hit me in the face. However, if I even decide to slow down my key presses, it could lead to a potentially fatal result for my teammates. With one constantly refilling the boss’s attention bar and the other three dealing damage to it, the heavy burden of keeping the entire team alive and buffed falls on to my shoulders. I need to keep switching between teammates to make sure they’re not hit with any stat debuffs and curses, all while making sure everybody has enough health to survive the hour long battle. To be honest though, I kinda did this to myself. I’m the only player who mains a healing character and actually maxed out every possible skill for my class.
Observing every frame of the boss’s actions, a massive black flame dragon that takes up a good amount of my twenty-four inch monitor screen, I instinctively put up a protective barrier that covers a small area around me. My teammates instantly take notice and rush into my barrier to avoid the upcoming attack: a large AOE fire attack from the dragon. One fire blast later, all of our avatars safely avoid a disaster and goes back to their assigned roles, slowly chipping away at the green bar at the bottom of our screens. After a few instances of rinse-and-repeat tactics to stay alive the boss finally lets out a horrific death screech, activating the special cutscene that follows.
Flipping the small black switch on the wire of my headset, I let out the loudest cheer I could bring up and start congratulating my team on completely the hardest boss with the minimum number of members required, “We did it, fuckers! “
The rest of my team turn on their microphones as well and join in on the celebration, chanting on and on about how my healing was beyond perfect for this boss, “How fast were you pressing keys?” “You must have been practicing just for this kind of situation.” “Tell me your hotbar layout so I can do heals like you!”
I do my best to try and not brag about how long I’ve been playing the game. I just let the compliments continue to pour in and laugh at the joyous mood among my team.
When the game blacks out for a moment and loads to the mission selection screen, everybody types the words “Going AFK, BRB bout 10.” I respond with the image of a nodding emoji and kick back in my chair to enjoy the well deserved break. I listen to the techno inspired game soundtrack as I await my team’s return.
Propping my small feet on the empty space of my desk and resting my hands in my lap, I let my eyes rest for a bit to prevent any straining. Tonight was a good raid night with my friends. And on top of that, I finally have the final in-game achievement for completely every boss raid. I can retire tonight with a proud mind, but the fun I gain from playing with friends is more than enough to keep me going a bit longer.
With my headphones perfectly cuffed around my ears, the sound of a door crashing close breaks through. I immediately open one of my eyes and look at the digital clock on my desk, “Is it that time of the day?”