Thursday, October 27, 2011

Farmville is Evil

A repost especially for a friend who just today decided to quite Farmville.

There are few things in live that irritate me more than application requests on Facebook. But a few weeks ago, whilst in recovery from my cosmetic “procedure”, I made a fatal blunder – I allowed the combination of utter boredom and curiosity to have the better of me and I accepted one. And so I was drawn into the murky and addictive cyber world of an evil place called Farmville. Now seven weeks later I find myself trapped by cyber psychological blackmail and guilt leaving me with one question - is Farmville evil?
Farmville is an application on Facebook where you can start your own cyber farm. The animals are cute, the buildings are quaint and the possibilities are endless. You can plant and harvest crops, make cyber money, expand your farm, build buildings and accumulate allot of stuff you don’t really need. The first few weeks, having had oodles of time on my hands, farming on my computer was entertaining. My farm quickly grew into one big flourishing oasis of animals, ponds, plantations and orchards. I flew my way up the levels and all seemed well in Farmville land. However the fun would not last, as with all good things this too would come to an end.

You see Farmville is time consuming. You are forced to go back and play every day, sometimes more than once a day and if you don’t, shit will die! For a while I got tired of the whole thing and stopped playing. As days passed my neighbours noticed disapprovingly how crops died and animals ran away. It wasn’t long before a few neighbours started sending messages telling me not to “neglect” my farm. Apparently this makes me look like a bad person and cyber animal hater (Hmm... I wonder how PETA feels about Farmville).

After a while if you don’t actually farm (i.e. plant and harvest crap) the Farmville community will shame you into submission and you will become a slave to a game that should have been fun but no longer is. And this is what happened to me. What was a game started to feel like a job, a job that many people take far too very seriously! But I was losing interest and wanted out.
Being the kind of person who likes to finish what I start and considering myself to be dedicated to all my ventures I found myself in a conundrum. Am I going to abandon my farm and suffer the wrath of the community or am I going to continue on with it? So for a couple of weeks, against my better judgement, I decided to press on. I figured out a way to time my harvests, developed a set routine and soon found that I was scheduling my life around a farm that doesn’t really exist.

My farm grew and flourished at the expense of my free time and my life in the real world. It soon became unhealthy, inconvenient and just a plain ridiculous pain in the ass and not the good kind! It apparently can get so bad that there are even people (CEO’s in fact) who gives their spouses, family members and/or friends their Facebook profile passwords to ensure that their farms are tended to while they are in meetings, on business trips and/or on holiday. It’s an illness I tell you and I didn’t want to end up being one of those people.

So last week I decided that I had enough I wanted to quit. My little fagilicious avatar will be deleted as will my farm. However, there was just one teeny tinny problem with that decision - you can’t freaking delete your farm! You can block the applications but your farm, it’s animals, trees, buildings and your cyber farmer himself will still be there waiting for you.  Haunting you!

Eventually your guilt and pressure from the Farmville community will force you to go back and unblock the application. Not liking loose strings in my live this became a source of consternation. I wanted my farm gone and obliterated into the oblivion of the Internet Matrix, but the evil developers of Farmville would not allow this to happen, so I was compelled to write them a letter.
Politely and diplomatically I told them that even though I enjoyed my time on Farmville it was time for me to bid them adieu. I also didn’t want to travel to my 2nd farm in the “English Countryside” as one farm was more than enough for me to handle and it was ruining my social life, spare time and most importantly it’s fucking with my blogging!

I wanted my farm to be deleted, auctioned off and/or destroyed! In the absence of the option of deletion I requested them to create a devastating natural disaster to annihilate my farm and everything on it. I ended my relatively desperate sounding e-mail with “I’m tired, my real garden and pets are neglected and I already have two jobs and farming just isn’t my thing”. To date the demons/developers at Farmville HQ are yet to respond to my request and my two damn farms (they have forced me to have a Farm in “England” now too!) are still standing and are barely flourishing.

Farmville is evil! If you haven’t played it don’t try it. The game will get you hooked like crack and make your work like a cheap red light district transvestite whore for Farmville cash. It will feed on your time, your bandwidth, make you get up at 5 o’clock in the morning and have you rush back home in a panic about missing a harvesting deadline. I am now stuck with two farms which I am incapable of deleting and have no interest of farming. Two farms with adorable little animals, buildings and decorations that I feel too sorry for to delete individually. It’s not normal for a virtual world to exert so much influence over a person’s life, maybe I shouldn’t check out Mafia Wars then! Be warned Farmville will engulf you given half a chance.

Till next time.

12 comments:

MartininBroda said...

This is so true :)

G said...

True True True. I too was stuck on it. I thought I'd just try it out and give it a go. A little while later, same as you, I was planning my life around it. Driving faster to get home to harvest. Then paying to get the game on my phone to play anywhere and spend a fortune on data. It even got to the point where I started calculating which crop gave me the best return in money to time taken to grow and solely went with that. So with a million billion billion bucks under my belt and a homepage overflowing with notices, I thought that that was enough. And I haven't looked back :) Hi, I'm G and I've been clean for about a year now. Thanks for the post. Really awesome. The video at the end is brilliant. FARMVILLE!! Keep up the good work.

Janene Murphy said...

OMG. You're right -- so evil! Glad you warned me. I won't touch it with a ten foot hoe!

timethief said...

To me a virtual life is bizarre, creepy and dangerous. From fake farming to fake breedable virtual bunnies and horses all of these games are as addictive as online gambling is. Imagine purchasing a membership in a fake world and purchasing genitals for your avatar so it can have sex with your fake spouse, who lives with you in a fake house, along with your fake pets. It’s craziness! But it's called "second life" and I suppose it's for those who don't have a first one. At least pet rocks were free and weren't electronically connected to folks who are datamining information like personal preferences in movies, books and music.

Pierre said...

@MartininBroda & @Janene Murphy, I'm glad that my warning made an impact ;-)

@G, sounds that we had a very similar experience!

@timethief, well said. I have also visit "Second Life" before and found it weird and can't quite comprehend why people would want to "live" a fake virtual life - it's bizarre!

Kemptoo said...

I never started Farmville. I made the mistake in starting Mafia Wars. It is the same story, don't go there!!!

Agit8r said...

Wishing you well with your recovery. Stay strong

Jason Shaw said...

Whilst I love Facebook for it's global connection for friends and relation, I hate it for all the applications like farmville. I cant stand those extra add ons, bells and whistles. I've only just got to grips with poking!

fr.neil38@Rocketmail.com said...

I keep getting all kinds of "Junk" like farmville and "do you think X would...." Questions on my facebook. They are programed, not really sent by friends.

I Void them all stating that:"Since being hacked, I don't do this type of Game or enquiry" many Individuals send me replys stating that they never sent me these things.

I agree they are diabolical time waisters.

BexiestBex said...

Hehe, I wouldn't be able to tell you how many FARMVILLE (FARMVILLE voice) requests I have rejected on Facebook..So glad now after reading this!!
I love all the facebook parodies! Have you seen the Facebook song?

Bex xox

http://sucker-for-fashion.blogspot.com/

The Bitchy Waiter said...

I once left a party early to make sure my crops didn't die. i knew then that i had a problem.

Pierre said...

@Kemptoo, I'm ignoring all these kind of applications!

@Agit8r, thanks ;-)

@Jason Shaw, Same here! No I lie, I do consider myself a professional Facebooker!

@fr.neil38@Rocketmail.com, Most of them are also virus ridden. Best to avoid them.

@BexiestBex, Can you give me the link for the Facebook song?

@The Bitchy Waiter, LOL!

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