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Shawn Woolley was an EverQuest player from Wisconsin who became an hero on Thanksgiving of 2001 while the game was still running on his computer. Shawn had been previously diagnosed with epilepsy and ADHD. No one gives a rat's ass about that though.
Before EverQuest, Shawn was diagnosed with ADD and epilepsy but controlled it by medicine. Apparently, he seemed to do fine for someone with learning disabilities while playing every other game. That was, until he started EverQuest.
His mother, Liz, noticed once he quit his job. Then, he decided he'd rather pay the monthly fee instead of paying the rent and was evicted from his apartment. While living with his mother, she noticed Shawn had seizures often when playing the game for long periods of time. From there, Liz sent him to a voluntary group home for addictive behavior. Of course, Shawn left.
Soon, he purchased a gun, which his mother did not know about until after Shawn went linkdead IRL.
After breaking his door's chain lock with a crowbar, his mother found him dead, and the game was still running. Shawn was surrounded by pizza boxes and notes strewn everywhere pertaining to the game. Since she wasn't a basement dweller, Shawn's mother had no fucking clue what any of it meant. But she had decided "that damn game" had killed him.
With the assistance of EQ players, Liz was able to gather information on what may have caused him to become an hero. On Halloween, the possibility that Shawn had an e-girlfriend arose. On the Vallon Zek server, he created a character that looked like him called "ILUVEYOU" (he is so much of a retard that he could not spell "love" right) and used it for three hours, and then left the server, never to return. Even today, nobody knows why he did it. Was it shame? Was it for the lulz? The world may never know.
SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING:
—John Smedley; on logic.
While Smedley has a lot of controversy surrounding him, especially with Star Wars Galaxies, this one quote pretty much earned him at least 100 Internets. Even still, Shawn's mother bawwwww'ed and wanted SOE to include a warning on the box saying that the game was addictive.
In EverQuest itself, Smedley had the developers implement a timer so people could set their own limits. (The sequel has one of these, too, but nobody uses it in either game.) Even in other MMORPGs, such as Final Fantasy XI, a notice told players to not forget their friends, family, school, and work - one could only assume this spawned from Shawn's suicide. (Ironically enough, FFXI is probably the most time-consuming MMORPG out there.)
Liz decided she would begin a lulzy program called On-Line Gamers Anonymous and create support groups for the recovering MMORPG addicts and their families. Within her site, you could find such gems as:
The users of the site provide some excellent lulz fodder, too:
YouTube Video: 11 PM Action News
—Liz Woolley, pointing out the obvious.
—Kristen Dudley; psychologist.
- EverQuest II
- World of Warcraft
- Owlsamantha, a WoW player who fails at parenting.
- Baby Grace, the deceased baby of WoW players who failed even harder at parenting.
- An hero
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