The September 18, 2006 issue of Newsweek explores the impact of World of Warcraft
, and how it's more than just a game for some. Author Steven Levy notes how certain players accompany "newbies" on quests and build meaningful friendships, some of which even lead to marriage (the bar scene is so cliche now).
The article also hints at where the MMO genre might be headed: "Edward Castronova sees [the success of WoW
] as an early indicator of what will become a vast participation in synthetic worlds, with fuzzier and fuzzier lines between virtual and physical realms. 'In 20 or 30 years the technology will be here to create incredibly more realistic and immersive worlds... there will be a world that fits the fantasy of any life you want to lead.'"