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Posts with tag ic

Patch 3.3 PTR: Craftable nature resist gear

The patch 3.3 PTR is up (as you must have noticed if you're reading the same site I'm writing on), and among other things, it contains a battery of crafted gear that confers nature resistance for users of the various armor classes. There's leg and foot wear for all armor types, in various versions where appropriate (like DPS/tanking/spell for plate).

This is a pretty good sign that we're going to want/need nature resist somewhere in Icecrown Citadel. The mats list is another hint in that direction, calling as it does for Icecrown Thing of Crafting Things [PH]. It's a good thing they put "PH" there, or I might not have known the name was a placeholder.

But seriously folks, get ready to craft another set of resistance gear. I'm not particularly jazzed about this myself - I mostly raid as a druid these days, and we have little enough bag space as it is - but I guess it's one way to make sure players don't consume the content too quickly (if they have to stock up on Things of Crafting Things from earlier bosses first). Still seems like a silly hoop to make us jump through.

Filed under: Patches, Items, Raiding

All the World's a Stage: Out of Character


All the World's a Stage. It really is. All the World of Warcraft is a actually a stage -- and all its orcs and humans merely players, each one with a role to play.

When people hear about roleplayers in WoW for the first time, some get the impression that we take our little game of "let's pretend" way too seriously, that everything we do in the game has to be some sort of mind-blowing expression of our innermost true feelings. But the truth of the matter is that only a portion of what we do in the game involves stories and character -- a lot of what we do and say to other players is not "in character" at all. In fact, our out-of-character (OOC) communication is essential in order to properly enjoy the in-character (IC) elements, and good roleplayers do a lot of cool things to help make both sides complement each other.

Much of what roleplayer does is out of character, and rightly so. Even just pushing buttons in order to activate abilities could be considered "OOC" -- in a way, the only character you can ever totally immerse yourself in is... yourself. Any time you play a role that isn't yourself, there's always some part you which is there in the background, knowing that it's all just a show. You can't really ignore your true self -- you have to let it guide and inform every part of the role you play.

The same is true when roleplaying in WoW. Roleplay is strengthened when you open up and accept OOC communication with others, establish real relationships in addition to those your characters create. Actors in a play have to support each other as real people or their play will fail, and in the same way, the honest communication we open up with our roleplaying friends can sometimes be what defines our roleplaying experience and gives it true meaning.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, WoW Social Conventions, Virtual selves, Guilds, RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

A question of culture clash

Just a few days ago, I was questing on a new alt in order to check out how the roleplaying was on a new server I'd heard good things about. As I went through Ironforge to pick up my Winter Veil presents, I saw one of those ads for a new guild, "<Guild Name> is a new RP guild looking for mature new members! PST to join!" and I thought, "Why not check it out? At least there'll be someone to talk to." So, when I whispered this person, his only real question for me was to ask my age. Satisfied by my answer, he sent me an invite.

I wrongly assumed that guild chat was in-character, and immediately introduced myself in what I hoped was a humorous way. A couple members said "lol," and the leader introduced himself as a former Horde player who was getting started on a new server too. Somewhat disappointed that this guild was not so "RP" as it had advertised, I proceeded to ask some questions about the status of roleplaying on this server. I must not have impressed them this way, however, as I logged in a couple days later to find myself kicked out of the guild already.

One of the members I remembered from that first day happened to be online, so I asked him what had happened. "Oldman" (who's name I changed somewhat in this story) replied that, in the view of his "elder" guild members, I was "too wordy" and also "too juvenile." Thoroughly perplexed, I asked him what exactly I had said that was so juvenile. He told me that was itself a juvenile thing to say, and then used "/ignore" on me. I had been disappointed enough to leave that guild anyway, but to be dismissed offhand like that was rather hurtful until I made a realization: These "elder" members must think that asking questions is itself "juvenile" behavior, especially questions they deem unimportant; while according to my worldview, sincere questions of any sort are paths to more knowledge and understanding, and in themselves a sign of ever-growing maturity. Besides, completely ignoring someone just for asking questions doesn't seem like the pinnacle of maturity to me, either, but who am I to judge? Maybe there was some good reason I don't know about.

Have you ever encountered social situations in WoW that left you completely befuddled? Have real-life cultural values and judgments ever gotten in the way of your gaming, especially in ways that caught you by surprise?

Filed under: Virtual selves, Guilds, RP

All the World's a Stage: Raiding and RP don't mix, or do they? -- A question of continuity.

All the World's a Stage is brought to you by David Bowers every Sunday evening, investigating the mysterious art of roleplaying in the World of Warcraft.

The Warcraft storyline is part of a great tradition of fantasy literature, and, as with any form of storytelling, the entire span of WoW lore involves a series of events and changes. Arthas wasn't always the Lich King, Illidan used to be able to wear shoes, and your character was once a little child, with no spells or epic weapons at all. All these things fit together in a single story universe, in which the progressive changes taking place in the story made the world what it is today.

But what is it today? Is Illidan now dead or alive? Is VanCleef dead or alive, for that matter? As a gaming environment, any boss you kill today has to be there for me to kill tomorrow. The WoW game world needs to remain basically unchangeable -- but over time this can stifle a roleplayer's sense of immersion in its narrative. To illustrate the impact this sort of immutability has on storytelling, let us take a page from a certain fantasy story you might have read, and see how it might work as a WoW raid instance.
Welcome to Mines of Moria! This raid instance will reset in 6 days, 10 hours and 41 minutes.

[Raidleader] [Gandalf]: Beware! There are older and fouler things than orcs in the deep places of the world. Follow my glowing staff!
[Raidleader] [Gandalf]: ... and um... get ready to pull that first group of orcs. Kill order is skull, x, circle... Gimli, can you offtank that cave troll?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Humor, Raiding, Lore, RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

All the World's a Stage: WTF is IC - OOC? WTB RP! OK THX, CU L8R

All the World's a Stage is brought to you by David Bowers every Sunday evening, investigating the mysterious art of roleplaying in the World of Warcraft.

While many online gamers are famous for using "leetspeak," there's a certain portion of the community that places a great deal of importance on complete sentences and good spelling. Roleplayers, as a whole, are friendly and communicative, but nonetheless have special ways of interacting that other gamers may not understand.

As a new roleplayer, I remember having to figure a lot of these things out, although I was blessed to befriend many people who kindly explained things to me as well. The first and most important concept I had to get a grasp of was the idea of "in-character" versus "out-of-character" communication (usually abbreviated to IC and OOC), and in what situations the use of either sort would be appropriate.

It's fair to say that on an RP server where roleplaying is still the rule rather than the exception, anything in the /say or /yell channels should be "in character." That's to say, it should be phrased with good spelling and proper punctuation, and should only refer to happenings within the WoW universe. In situations where one must say something out-of-character in these channels, it is polite to at least couch your OOC words in double parentheses to clarify your meaning.

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Filed under: Virtual selves, RP, All the World's a Stage (Roleplaying)

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