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Posts with tag bias

Breakfast Topic: "Blizzard's Horde bias" -- fact or delusion?

Alliance and Horde crests
This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the AOL guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

It seems every week on the official forums, other game sites, and in daily conversation in Azeroth or Earth, the topic comes up that Blizzard favors the Horde. When the claim is directed toward lore development, even Horde players sometimes agree. But is there merit to the accusation?

Chris Metzen admits he loves Thrall and gets excited talking about the Orc's story, but he's also named Malfurion Stormrage as his favorite character in the past. Developers incite cheers of Lok'tar Ogar and For the Horde! at BlizzCon while suggesting Not the face! for the Alliance's new battlecry.

Most of this, however, is not where players look for their sole source of faction pride. It's in the game. The Horde's story has gotten very interesting with Sylvanas' darker path, Garrosh's controversial leadership, and Thrall's place on center stage in Cataclysm. The Alliance, however, has seen very little involvement from its leaders, and some players feel what they have seen has been out of character for their leaders. Malfurion neutral as Ashenvale burns -- or worse, as Tyrande is attacked?

Perhaps the strongest supporting evidence for or against bias (depending how you interpret it) are Metzen's recent comments that the Alliance will get some needed attention to strengthen that faction pride in two novels focusing on the Alliance, first with Wolfheart by Richard Knaack, followed by a still-untitled novel about Jaina Proudmoore by Christie Golden. But is that enough?

Do you think novels will stir the passion in the Alliance players' hearts, or is Blizzard going down the wrong path for the right desire? Do you think there's any merit to the claim of bias to begin with, or is it just more faction feuding amongst players?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

The Queue: You can't take Spell Power away from me

Welcome back to The Queue,'s daily Q&A column where the team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Adam Holisky will be your host today.

There's a great question about the mechanics of spell casting when a proc / buff is or is not active. It's a very fine point that most people don't consider, and it's a mechanic that has been reiterated by Ghostcrawler and company recently. Take a few minutes to read it, you'll be glad you did.

Today's reading music is Frank Sinatra and Natalie Cole singing They Can't Take That Away From Me.

I love the way we dance 'till three.

Mortur asked...

"Now that the conversion has been released for a while and bugs have been being dealt with, do you feel that there is much reason anymore for holding off on converting your account to Have the authentication issues after a patch been going away?"

Read more →

Filed under: The Queue

Australian TV covers World of Warcraft

Fortunately, this "mY Generation" show from Australian TV is a little more fair with WoW than the last bit we saw. Though the stereotyping of an entire generation and the video effects grate after a while, it's a generally better look at what it's like to be a World of Warcraft player. It would be nice to see, for example, these kids going out to a movie occasionally or interacting with other people (since most of WoW's population actually does that), and it would have been good to hear from more than just that scientific woman talking about the average playtime -- why all the focus on how many hours /played these people have and not what it feels like to play during those hours? But as far as mainstream reporting goes, it starts out as a pretty good description of what it's like to be a WoW player.

Part 2 and part 3 start to fall down, though, and by the time an intervention rolls around, the show gets a little more biased. I have to say, it would be fun to see a documentary done in this way for someone who watches TV 20 hours a week -- "We wanted to hang out with her, but she said the season finale of Top Model was on. She's a completely different person now!" Somehow, staring at a screen and doing nothing is still socially acceptable, but according to television itself, staring at a screen and interacting with other human beings isn't.

Thanks, Luke S.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Blizzard, News items

Is Brewfest easier for Alliance?

Yozozo claims on the forums that he is able to complete 17 keg runs for the Alliance version of the There and Back again quest for Brewfest and is backed up by others who say they complete an average 15 keg runs per attempt. On the Horde side, 11 to 13 seems to be the average for the high achievers.

I've run the quest on both factions, and it does seem easier on the Alliance side even though the Horde version has more apple barrels. Is it shorter? Is there a better time bonus? Are the goblins wearing Dwarf masks a handicap? Or is it just perception?

I definitely think the Barker quests are easier on the Alliance side. The Ironforge course is in a complete circle without any backtracking and you can jump down the mountain a bit to cut the circuit short at the end. You have to backtrack a little in Orgrimmar and there is no shortcut to the Horde quest-givers.

What is your opinion? Is there an Alliance bias for the Brewfest quests or are the Horde just worse at motivating Rams?

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Analysis / Opinion, Events, Quests, Forums

Using WoW in a therapeutic setting

Lest you think playing WoW is nothing but trouble (and shame on you if you do), Terra Nova has an excellent story about how WoW is being used in a therapetic setting.

It's great to hear that Blizzard's little game could actually be the key to helping young kids out "socially, academically, and therapeutically." The social benefits are obvious-- even the shyest wallflower can get involved, meet people, and find a group in WoW (it's no substitute for the real thing, as the article says, but it's a step up from no social interaction at all). And it's true that with all the numbers and text in WoW, it's not surprising that figuring those out could translate to better academic work in some cases. If you don't care about aggro, you might not benefit, but if a kid really cares about how to max his DPS or make sure he keeps aggro on the main tank, there's some good number theory going on there. And we've already shown, here on this site, that there's a bias against bad spelling ingame.

But perhaps most interesting is how the shared experience of WoW can be used to build connections to kids who have trouble making connections at all. We're a culture, for sure, because we all know why they call it Lagforge, and we all know (well, eventually we do) where Mankrik's wife is. It's awesome that a therapist can use that connection to create some more real connections, as the story says, between the child and the teacher.

Now let's just see if the media covers a story like this. Or hasn't the suicide in China gotten enough press yet?

Filed under: Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Odds and ends

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