Tuesday, October 20, 2009

WHOOOOOOOO are you? Who Who... An Identity Crisis of Miniscule Proportions

For years I have been known online as SlikRX. (pronounced “Slik - are - ex”) When I went on to XBOX Live, most of my online friends just call me “Slik”. My friends are likewise known by THEIR handles. Even after I’ve met them in person, I will usually call them by their nickname/handle and not their real names. And conversely, very few of them call me Jeff.

I guess I’m a bit weird that way. BUT, in my defense, the nicknames & handles people chose are often, to me, a more accurate name for someone. After all, these are names people gave themselves, and/or are from personal nicknames.

And I like that.

Now I’ve got Balthazario as my WoW main, and I’m having a bit of an identity crisis. I don’t really know which to go by. When I post comments on other peoples’ blogs, I will refer to myself as “SlikRX/Balthazario”. I PLAY a toon named Balthazario, but I don’t really identify with it. I still think of myself (online) as SlikRX. I guess I never really have immersed myself in the game yet. That’s REALLY strange, because I *DID* get invested in my old pen & paper (“p&p”) Dungeons & Dragons character, Vex. For quite a few years, we were one & the same.

For whatever reason, that “soul transference” just hasn’t taken place here with my Drae toon. Huh…

At some point I will get Ventrillo (aka “Vent”) so I can verbally chat with my raid/party members, and THAT will actually be even more odd. I know I will be called “Balth” or some version of Balthazario, and it will be a learning process to respond to that name. If someone calls out “SLIK!!!”, I will respond, in real life and online. It’s part of who I am. I identify with that name.

Not so much for dear little Balthy.

Does anyone out there get into their characters, or at least feel simpatico with it? (ie, you respond automatically to your character’s name)


  1. I have to admit I totally identify with my toons. The longer I play a toon the closer I feel to them and the more I imbue my personality into their character. Oddly enough thought the one toon I no longer play at all, Catryalini, is the one I use as an alt name for websites, my own blog and even for my twitter account. I love the name and identify with it very closely. Oddly enough my dualistic nature also allows me to identify with Valynda when I play her and Lynnia when I play her.

  2. I read ... I think ... I come back ... I *commet*!

    Sorry I haven't done this before now.

    I actually think names are important in WoW, or any virtual space, because they provide some small sense of connection and identity. Therefore what you're called and what you call others is important. Usually, in game, I go by Tam to the people who know me well, Tama to morons on PUGs, who can't deal with the fact my name is more than one syllable, and Tamtam to my closest friend in the guild because, well, he's my friend and it's cute when it's him.

    So I guess what I'm saying at lengh here is ... makes sense to me, especially if you think of yourself, and are used to having others think of you, as Slik rather than Balt.

    The other day M'Pocket called me Tam in real life ... I was quite thrown.