So that's that then. Another few hours and all the demons will pile into their wedge-shaped spaceship like so many clowns ramming themselves back inside a clown car. All the yelling and screaming and dying will stop, the skies will clear of fel green beams and fluttering wings. Peace will return to Azeroth once more.
Or so we assume. They are going away, aren't they? It's off to The Broken Isles for the Burning Legion and the legion of Legionnaires alike, isn't it? I do hope so. I'd hate to think we've got two years of random demons, who missed the pickup, wandering aimlessly around The Barrens, Dun Morogh and Tanaris like a cross between ET and the journalists who were still drunk when Saigon fell.
On balance it's been a decent pre-launch event. Azuriel thinks it might be the best an MMO has ever had. I wouldn't go that far although I'd have to do some thinking to put up an alternative candidate. These things, intense though they are, tend not to stick in the mind for long, or so I find.
I do have some very long-lasting memories of lengthy world events in EverQuest. I think often of (and not infrequently refer to) the multi-month sequence that began with the arrival of some Rude Individuals in Qeynos Hills and ended with an attempted annexing of the city by the followers of Bertoxxulous, the God of Disease.
Somewhere in the middle of that one came the death of Cros Treewind, the now largely forgotten partner of the much better-remembered Holly Windstalker. Holly unlives on even now as a ghost in the Antonica of EQ2, while all that remains of Cros Treewind is his staff, somewhere in one of my countless Norrathian bank vaults.
Like the current WoW Invasions, those EQ events drew swarms of players seeking exceptional opportunities for experience and loot. I fondly remember the Dark Elven invasion of Firiona Vie (the city and zone, not the character, as if I needed to explain) and the darkening of Lesser Feydark, a demonic invasion of its own stripe.
In retrospect it occurs to me that those all may have had some connection to a forthcoming expansion. If not that, then to the opening of some new zone. Expansions and new zones came so thick and fast in those days it was hard to keep up. Down at the low-mid levels, where I lived, things were done to you not for you. You made the best of it, or tried to.
So, I wouldn't rate the recent incursions of the Burning Legion as highly as other interruptions to the norm of days gone by, but then I'm not playing up my first character in my first MMO. I imagine if there is anyone still doing such a thing in WoW in 2016, this last month has blown the top of their head right off.
Legion launches for me tonight at 11pm. According to this handy chart I could be among the first to take the fight to the demonic horde. I don't even have an early start tomorrow. I could perfectly reasonably stay up for a couple of hours, say I was there. All that.
But I won't. I'm not even going to buy Legion yet. I'm going to heave a sigh of relief that the excitement is over and go back to questing and exploring at a less frenetic pace without the crowds and the hysteria.
I'll sub for another month and take a wander around the lands the Cataclysm wrecked. I'll potter through Pandaria. I'll even see what Garrisons are like from the inside, assuming someone's still handing them out.
I might even look into the possibilities of earning enough gold to pay for a sub with play money. I used to be half-decent at earning platinum on the broker in EQ and EQ2. Maybe I can do the same in WoW.
One way or another I'm going to stick around for a little longer. I may get to Legion eventually. It'll be waiting when I'm ready, I'm sure. I think WoW could be around for a while...