by Chris Copeland
I’M A SENIOR AT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS, studying to become a high school math teacher. But when my work is done, usually late at night, I play a computer game called EverQuest II. It’s called a massively multiplayer online game; the point is social interaction. You have a character—mine is called an Erudite Coercer—and play with a bunch of other people to accomplish projects together. It’s got a fantasy feel, sort of like The Lord of the Rings.
When EverQuest II launched last November, there was a group of about six of us who played together regularly. One of them was an Ogre Defiler, and I started to hear a lot of rumors about him. In online discussions, people would say that Curt Schilling played the game and that they’d seen a photograph this guy had posted of himself that looked a lot like Schilling. But this was right after the Red Sox won the World Series, so I didn’t think much of it. Then in December, this same player mentioned that he might do an advertising deal with EverQuest. I wanted to confirm the rumors about him, so I asked why they would want him to advertise. He casually replied, “Well, some people might consider me famous.” One of the best pitchers in baseball had been playing with me for over a month, and I didn’t even know it.
Pretty soon we both became officers in an EverQuest guild, which is a more formal group of players. We got to know each