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Breakfast Topic: Does the levity mess up the lore?

Warning: Wrath spoilers ahead!

Blizzard's pretty good at Lore when they want to be, with the whole 2.4 storyline, the Battle of Ahn'Qiraj, and many epic storylines promising to come out of Northrend. At the same time, they also have their own offbeat brand of humor that is never far gone from their design philosophy, and it shows up in their stories too.

Sometimes it serves them well and adds a bit of levity, but other time, it seems to take on a life of its own, a life that can strangle what could have otherwise been something compelling and interesting. Zul'Aman is perhaps the most pertinent example. What could have been the last attempt of the Farstriders to shut down the troll menace threatening their people, what could have been a revival of the Troll killing tradition of the Arathi, or an examination of the High Elves who stayed loyal to the Alliance but still hate the Amani, instead turned into a cheap redneck treasure hunt. It killed much of the allure of the zone and turned what could have been a epic struggle against a former hero of the Horde into a run of the mill bunny bashing session.

It feels sort of the same way with Hemet Nesingwary and the DHETA. It's been a running gag that Hemet must be some sort of incredible genocidal maniac who's run countless animal species into extinction. Yet there's never been any indication until now that he is. In fact, the Tauren, who by all indication are Hunters who still understand the need for balance and harmony with nature, seem to have respect for him.

Yet here's this DHETA group, a maniacal group of radicals who eschew any killing of animals at all, looking to bring him down. As a Druid roleplayer, I've never seen Druids as the type to lean so radically to one side like that. They've always, in my mind, understood the need to kill, the cycle of predator and prey, and there are druid quests that would seem to bear that out -- the very wearing of leather armor would seem to bear that out. So how am I supposed to reconcile the Cenarion Circle I know with a cheap joke about PETA?

Then again, Hemet himself is sort of part of Blizzard's lightheartedness to begin with, his name and original camp in Stranglethorn Vale being one big Hemingway joke. So it could be I'm reading too much into it. What do you think?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Breakfast Topics, Lore, RP, Wrath of the Lich King

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