How to Handle Chocolate Factory-Related Frustration
Like many Neopians, I spent the better half of one month's Half Price Day (that's the 3rd of each month, hereafter known as HPD) working on adding the Chocolate avatar to my collection. In case it isn't obvious, on HPD, the prices of items in Neopian shops are slashed in half. The benefit of restocking on this particular day is that more users will be around to clear the junk out of the Chocolate Factory, making it more likely to restock with candy that would get you the avatar. Additionally, on HPD, clearing the Chocolate Factory becomes slightly more profitable than it usually is. That is to say, you're less likely to lose NP from clearing it. Good restockers make their money back from restocking pricier items, but if you're reading a guide on how to handle your frustration, you clearly are not that sort of person. No offense, I'm definitely in the same boat; my reflexes are slower than a Slorg in molasses.
One of the advantages to restocking on HPD is also a disadvantage; obviously, since there are more people clearing the shop, there is simultaneously more competition for the avatar. For those unused to it, restocking is difficult enough without having to deal with excess competition. As such, I have compiled a list of ways to avoid getting excessively frustrated on your quest for the Chocolate avatar. Enjoy!
For starters, take a break to contemplate how lovely the Chocolate avatar is and imagine how happy you'll be when you can use it all the time and taunt your friends. Envision how envious your friends will be. You may wish to prepare a font to use for the occasion, or at least find one online. I, personally, prepared a font in which I remarked on the tedious nature of restocking. To be more specific, my signature says, "restocking is one of the most boring things I've ever done."
Have some chocolate, for real; I won't bore you with the little details, but apparently it releases some lovely chemicals in your brain that enhance your mood. Not to mention the fact that it tastes delicious and some of it is relatively good for you. Dark chocolate, in moderation, has certain health benefits. If you're allergic, you have my sympathies (aka more chocolate for me!! Sorry I'm not sorry.)
However, if you're allergic to chocolate, let me just take this moment to mourn for you. On the other hand, I suppose you must ingest your sugar in other ways. Accordingly, I would also like to offer an alternative suggestion: perhaps a toffee apple would be more to your liking? By the way, you should at least give your pets some chocolate. Just because you can't enjoy it doesn't mean you should deprive them. And you could simultaneously live vicariously!
Regardless of how frustrated you get, do refrain from smashing your computer with a brick or throwing it out the window. I understand that violence might be tempting but I assure you that it won't bring you any closer to the avatar. Also, computers tend to be mildly expensive, so even if it were temporarily satisfying, you would certainly regret it. This also applies to any equipment you may have (e.g., your mouse). On the other hand, if you threatened the Chocolate Factory shopkeeper, you might have better luck. If you opt for that route, please report back; I'm quite curious.
Along those lines, you may wish to consider bribing the shopkeeper. If you're willing to resort to threats, you might as well try bribery first. After all, you catch more Draphlies with honey than with vinegar!
Do your eyes a favor. If they start to become unfocused, step away from your computer for a bit. If you are concerned about missing a restock while you are gone, at least focus your eyes on the wall for a few seconds. After all, you'd have to be incredibly unlucky to miss a restock during such a short period of time.
Don't get too irritated if you see an avatar item and fail to even get to the haggling page. Take solace in the fact that you're still doing better than those who don't even see those items! They go fast, and as I mentioned, it does get fairly competitive.
Recruit your friends into restocking with you! That way, they'll be able to commiserate with you and you can strengthen your bond over how awful restocking is. Complaining is cathartic. Warning: this strategy may backfire if they turn out to be much better at restocking than you are. Try not to get too jealous if they get the avatar before you do. Be patient—your time will come. Probably. Altador wasn't built in a day, right?
Similarly, you could create a board on the Avatar Chat in order to chat with others about the avatars. An advantage of doing this would be that others might be able to tell you if you missed an avatar item in that last restock if you weren't paying attention. Additionally, it's another great way to relate to strangers and friends alike.
Or, alternatively, convince your friends to give up on the Chocolate Factory just so you'll have less competition for the avatar. This approach might also backfire in that your friends probably aren't foolish enough to fall for whatever you might tell them. In fact, if they're anything like me, they'll actually put more effort into beating you to the avatar (I'm quite stubborn). But you never know—a more selfless friend (read: doormat) might be convinced.
Remember that if you don't get the avatar, it's not the end of the Neopia. Worse things have happened. Try to see the silver lining in the situation: at least you've probably received more random events from refreshing at the shop so often, right? And maybe you've improved slightly?
Finally, consider the old adage: if at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Remember that even if you don't manage to get the avatar this month, there will be another Half Price Day next month and another opportunity to try again. Of course, you can attempt to restock during the other days of the month, but as I mentioned previously, you would have to actually clear the shop. I don't necessarily recommend this; in my opinion, it is more trouble than it is worth, especially if you are a beginner restocker. (Again, if you're not, I can't begin to comprehend why you waste your time with this article. Especially when you could be dominating Kauvara's Magic Shop or the Post Office.) Anyway, have faith in yourself and don't give up.
Now go out there and get that avatar! You got this. And rest assured that I will not be hanging around that shop, competing with you.