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Posts with tag aesthetics

Encrypted Text: The buff rogues really need

Ruffy vs. the Light Bulb
Every week or two, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Scott Helfand (@sveltekumquat) will be your shadow on this treacherous journey; try not to keep your back turned for too long, and make sure your valuables are stashed somewhere safe.

My fellow rogues, it's time for an eleganza extravaganza.

For the past couple of months, you've joined me on a long, winding stroll through the state of roguedom today. We've talked about the burning questions on our minds as rogue players; how stealthy (or not) our stealth is; and what makes us (or used to make us) feel unique as a class. We've talked about what we're thankful for, as well as what we're less thankful for, as the Warlords beta likely draws near.

And finally, last week, we tagged along as three fictional rogues hung out in a fictional bar, got fictionally drunk and caterwauled over the many nonfictional (and sometimes contradicting) complaints players have about how their class works.

So. Where does all of this chatting leave us? Are we any closer to agreement on these issues?

I'm not so sure. In fact, I suspect that, while we've generated a lot of great conversation, the main thing we've done here is highlight just how tremendously varied our opinions are when it comes to the specific aspects of rogue gameplay we players would like to see altered.

But I think we're closer to getting at one of the major seeds of our communal discontent. Here's what I suspect that seed is.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Encrypted Text: What does a rogue look like?

druid rogue
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any questions or article suggestions you'd like to see covered here.

Ghostcrawler recently described the rogue class as "slippery". He was met with a backlash of rogues arguing every side of the argument. I have personally struggled with my mental image of the rogue class. What does a rogue look like? Are we lightly-armored thieves or toughly-bound brawlers? Let me get this one out of the way early: "A rogue doesn't look like anything because you can't see them!" While I appreciate Stealth humor, the quip doesn't answer my question.

Appearances have always been an important aspect in WoW. Players used to gauge their opponents' strength based on what shoulder armor they were wearing. Transmogrification is easily the most important feature of the past few years, as it has breathed life into content both old and new. The rogue class draws from several diverse archetypes, such as the thief, the assassin, and the brawler. Each source archetype contributes flavor to the class, but the end result can look like a confused mess.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

15 Minutes of Fame: Anthropologist Bonnie Nardi on WoW culture and art

From Hollywood celebrities to the guy next door, millions of people have made World of Warcraft a part of their lives. How do you play WoW? We're giving each approach its own 15 Minutes of Fame.

We've written before at WoW.com and even here in 15 Minutes of Fame about attempts to study World of Warcraft culture from a sociological, psychological or anthropological point of view. In all of these cases, the researchers in question have logged time playing WoW as part of their research, albeit some with greater degrees of immersive success than others.

So I was very pleasantly surprised to learn that Bonnie Nardi, a University of California-Irvine expert in the social implications of digital technologies and author of the rather blithely titled My Life as a Night Elf Priest, not only rolled the token raiding character in order to observe the curious behavior of the raiding animal -- she actually enjoys WoW in its own right. Rather than cautiously sniffing WoW culture only to generate another wide-eyed, ZOMG-look-at-this-funny-lingo report from the digital field, Nardi dove deep enough to play in four different guilds: a casual raiding guild; a raiding guild composed of fellow academics; a small, casual guild; and her own friends-and-family guild. Our two-part interview with Nardi, packed with opinion and cultural analysis, reveals a witty approach to WoW culture that successfully combines academic insight with the familiarity of a seasoned player.

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Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

Is "ugly" the new beautiful, and "evil" the new good? [Updated]

I have a question for all the Horde and warlock players out there -- as well as anyone who plays their character in a so-called "evil" way. But first, let me explain where I'm coming from.

As you know, one of the main differences between the Alliance and the Horde is their sense of style. In fact, the question of what looks and feels good to players of either side may be one of the biggest areas of disagreement that actually exists between them. To a lesser extent, this sort of disagreement exists between classes as well. Warlocks give off a very different feeling from Paladins for example, and different people are attracted to each sort of "aura."

Like many players, my sense of aesthetics and beauty fits in squarely on one side of this aesthetic equation, and the other side can be rather difficult for me to understand. I play in the Alliance, and my favorite races are usually the ones that are "beautiful" and noble-looking in a traditional sense. To me personally, the Horde races are hard to relate to.

I do sometimes start up a Horde character if I have a funny idea for roleplaying him or her, but eventually something about them starts to bother me. Now that the Horde has prettier blood elves to play, I admit this helped me a lot -- I am gradually leveling up a blood elf alt in my free time -- but somehow being a blood elf in the Horde feels rather out of place, as if I'm not really part of the Horde because I'm not hunched over with a ready-to-kill look on my face.

For a long time I couldn't play a warlock either for similar reasons. The class just seemed inherently evil; summoning demons and stealing people's souls seemed wrong somehow. Even though I knew it's just a fantasy game, I still had no desire to mimic in the game something that would be abhorrent to me in real life. I often wondered: what is attractive about the look and feel of these characters to Horde and warlock players?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, RP

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