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Drama Mamas: Overreacting

Drama Mamas Lisa Poisso and Robin Torres are experienced gamers and real-life mamas -- and just as we don't want our precious babies to be the ones kicking and wailing on the floor of the checkout lane next to the candy, neither do we want you to become known as That Guy on your realm.

We've got a twofer for you this week. Are these letter writers overreacting?
Dear Drama Mamas,

Hello! I have recently ran into a problem with my GuildMaster, who we will call C. I was questing in a zone, when one player says in General chat, "He (referring to Sha of Anger) is not up yet." My GuildMaster, who was also in the zone says, "That's what she said. ;D" Now I would have no problem with this, if our guild rules did not say specifically, "Each [GUILD NAME] is held accountable for his or her actions. Everyone is subject to a "three-strike" rule, meaning that an infraction of the above guild rules, and/or doing foolish or thoughtless things that would cause [GUILD NAME] to be seen in a poor light to the general populace of the realm will win you a warning." and one of those above rules include..."Keep chat and Ventrilo chatter PG-rated. Stay away from political, sexual and religious discussions."
I later told my GM that I was embarrassed of her talk, and I would advice for her to read her own rules. I don't want to go into detail how a certain body part can be "up" but I feel it was a very sexual remark.

Did I overreact? The officers and GM are stacked against me now, and it's not just a fun experience any longer. Please help me!

From,
Watchdog
Drama Mama Robin: Yes, Watchdog, you did overreact. "That's what she said." is definitely a sexual reference, but it still falls under the PG category that your guild's rules state. It's a comment that is often said on prime time network television and is only naughty if the person hearing it gets what it means. A child of twelve may know all about the birds and bees, but not necessarily understand that reference. Your GM didn't break her own rules unless making a tired joke in public is also against the guild's guidelines.

What bothers me is the fact that the officers and GM are "stacked against" you. That means one of two things happened:
  • You chastised your GM in public.
  • Your GM went public with your grievance.
If you didn't use whispers or some other private method to discuss your embarrassment with the GM, then you brought their reaction on yourself. If, however, you did talk with your GM privately, then she caused drama by sharing your opinion with people she knew would agree with her. Though, in her defense, can't really be faulted for discussing the incident with her officers (and only her officers). Either way, you're not having fun and you should probably skedaddle.

You'll be hard pressed to find a guild with G rated chat unless you go to one that allows young children to play. (And even then, players are often allowed to let their hair down in the late hours.) We have a couple of guides that will help you find a guild in general, and help you look for a specific kind of guild.

Good luck in finding a new home that won't embarrass you in public and please let us know what happens.

Drama Mamas OverreactingDrama Mama Lisa: I'd have to agree with Robin that this old saw is relatively tame, and I certainly wouldn't characterize it as a "sexual discussion." While I would never make this kind of joke at the office, my husband could certainly get away with it based on his more outgoing personality. (Then again, he's that guy you discover having a heart-to-heart conversation about Spiderman with the CEO when the elevator doors open.) It's a pretty classic fit for the PG category.

Unless the atmosphere has become too strained, though, I wouldn't necessarily recommend looking for a new guild just yet. If you otherwise enjoy the guild and the company of your guildmates, try turning the other cheek to such mild conflicts with your standards. Remember, WoW is filled with not dozens, not hundreds, not thousands, but millions of other players who are nothing like you. You may find their behavior offensive sometimes -- yet they could very well be finding your own outlook equally annoying. While you are wrinkling your nose in disgust at their immaturity, they're probably making jokes about diamonds forming in places where the sun don't shine, if you catch my PG-slanted drift ... Nobody's right or wrong here; it's about people being people. Treat it like a buffet; load up on the dishes you enjoy, and simply pass the others without remark.

I feel somewhat selfish, and borderline racist, for recently cancelling my subscription to World of Warcraft. I started playing a few months before the release of burning crusade, and I've loved playing the whole time. I went through excitement/dread cycles with every expansion just like everyone else. I constantly had to re-learn the foundation of my class with every major patch, just like everyone else. I am not a special or exemplary player by any stretch of the imagination. The only thing that seems to separate me from most players is how much I loathe the art and music style of East Asian fantasy. Unfortunately for me, Mists of Pandaria turned World of Warcraft into something toxic.

I can't tolerate the new music at all, which should have been an easy fix by muting it, and playing something else in the background or playing something I do like on iTunes. But doing so keeps me from conveniently enjoying the rest of the WoW music that I love. After the second day of constantly going back and forth with crtl+s, I just got tired of the process and played the game in silence.

Try as I might, I could not find a hot key shortcut to protect my eyes. Ninja, Samurai, Monk, classic Chinese architecture and snake-like dragons, I hate them all. Just traveling from one point to another was exasperating. The elements of feudal Japan or China borrowed, infused, or re-created in game turn my stomach. Just writing this makes me feel guilty of some form of racism, which I would like to stress that I am not, for what it's worth. I simply have a powerful aversion to the Asian art styling the most recent expansion uses. I did my best to power through and see if there was something more that I could enjoy, but I ended up folding my hand at level 89, four bars from max level. One rice hat and koi fish too many, I cancelled my subscription.

I thought I might return to the game for a future expansion, and then I realized that I would still need to level all of my alts through a decent amount of Mists content to even see the next group of zones. I know that you can level through PvP, but World of Warcraft Player versus Player is not my cup of tea, so I'm screwed there too. I knew what I was getting into when I paid for the expansion, thinking that my addiction would easily overcome my distaste, I thought wrong. I really want to play WoW again, but I feel like Mists has become this big hurdle that will forever keep me from playing a game that I've enjoyed for so many years.

Drama Mama RobinDrama Mama Robin: As your reaction is so strong to this category of imagery, I'm surprised you even bought the expansion. Personally, I know how you feel. When Everquest's Shadows of Luclin expansion came out, I quit. They changed my beloved characters and not for the better (in my very strong opinion). So I voted with my MMO money and started playing Anarchy Online instead.

Since you have such an aversion to traditional Asian architecture, dress, etc., you have made the right decision to quit. You are absolutely correct that there is no way to avoid what you loathe. Even if you leveled outside of Pandaria for the next expansion, you'll still be seeing pandaren everywhere. MMOs abound and many are free to play so that you can try them out before you buy a subscription. Remember, if you're not having fun, there's no point in playing a game. Good luck and let us know what you end up playing.

Drama Mama Lisa: Especially now at the beginning of patch 5.2, many players are twisting and fussing and twisting against new features and content they dislike. The comments of any article about 5.2 content overflow with sad sacks dolefully counting the days until they quit or confiding how they've already left the game, although they're still here to tell us all about it. The problem isn't the game, Anonymous; it's about learning to move on.

Blizzard has managed to create a game that appeals to millions and millions of people. That's an incredible feat. Still, there are going to be millions and millions of others who just don't care for the newer content or the ways the gameplay evolves over time. There will also be millions and millions of players who were captivated by WoW when they first played it, but years of familiarity have stripped its ability to delight and fascinate. When the fun wears thin, it's time to let go and move on.

It's going to be a strange adjustment. You'll probably have some sleepless nights and moodiness -- yes, really. You're mourning. It's difficult to set down a thing that has brought so much pleasure, especially if you have friends and family who are still passionately engaged in their own love affairs with WoW. Rest assured that if the thought of leaving WoW makes you this sad, you've experienced an entertainment experience worth treasuring. Don't be bitter. It was a great ride, and we're glad to have ridden alongside you -- for however long.

Dodge the drama and become that player everyone wants in their group with a little help and insight from the Drama Mamas. Play nice ... and when in doubt, ask the Drama Mamas at robin@wowinsider.com. Read Robin's section of this post on how to get your letter answered and please remember that we cannot answer privately.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Drama Mamas

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