Violins and Magic

Beautiful post at Terra Nova about violins as magical items.

I own a violin, but it is only a white-level item, at best.  Certainly mass manufactured, it was purchased for less than $100 when I was in 8th grade.  My mom probably thought the violin was a passing fancy, so didn’t want to invest in a lot of gold toward a green level one.  I did my best to make it sounds like a green violin over the five years that I played.  (I played the viola for a year, too, which I loved even more.)

I skilled up quickly in the beginning, but then plateaued, as always seems to be the case with weapons. As my skill increased, I noted that my DPS went down.  My parents stopped sending me to my room to practice with the door closed.

Eventually, I reached the limits of my available training, given how much gold I had in my bank (not to mention my innate skills as a player), and pursued different skills.  I kept the violin in my inventory (my room) for the next few years, just in case I felt the urge to play.  When I moved away from home, the violin was moved into my permanent bank space (parents’ basement) where it stayed for more than ten years, collecting dust.

On one of my last visits, I decided to bring the violin back home with me.   I can see it in the closet from where I’m sitting in my office right now.  I know I’d have to start leveling the skill from zero again, but some days it’s tempting, especially when I hear one of the more masterful players make magic on one of their epics.  I know these are epics and skills I’ll never have, but a little magic in life is always nice.  I could be a casual player again someday.


8 responses

  1. I know the feeling, Saxophone for me. Damn what some people can do with them….Well it’s soming that I enjoyed when I was young, and who know. Maybe some day I will again.

    Thanks for the post, loved the way you twisted the worlds together.

  2. Thanks, Alik! I have to give the real credit to Edward Castronova for the beautiful idea, but I enjoyed extending it into my own personal context.

    I miss making music, too.

  3. @Dax

    Yay! I think if I had access to a piano, I might actually play. I played piano on and off while growing up, but never really learned to sight read music. My technique was poor, but I could play relatively difficult stuff by memorizing it.

    I do sometimes fantasize about REALLY learning to read piano music and play. I have a keyboard that I could practice on, but it’s just not quite the same as having the big robust sound of the piano. (Oh, and having 88 keys. My keyboard doesn’t. 😦 )

    What kind of stuff do you play?


    There really is nothing quite like it. I miss being part of a full orchestra. Even in high school when we didn’t sound that great, there was something exhilarating about making music with a large group of people.

    When I’m procrastinating, I spend a lot of time browsing through live concert performances on youtube and reminiscing.

    What do you play?

  4. I only play Chopin. I’ve never practiced scales…I can’t chord out music…I look at my hands while I play.

    Basically, I memorize the music and let muscle memory take it from there. Even though it’s been nearly five years since I learned it, I can still play Prelude in E Minor reasonably well from muscle memory; when I start thinking about it, I usually screw it up…haha.

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