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Posts with tag real-world

Breakfast Topic: How do you handle real-life interruptions?

AFK Goblin
You just can't take a picture of yourself during Love is in the Air without a heart on your head.

I actually don't like the phrase "real life" when describing what happens in the physical world because it implies that the interactions we have in Azeroth aren't real. Captain Obvious says that WoW is not a single-player game. When we are playing Mass Effect, we don't affect anyone else if we get up to take a bio break or comfort a child. But in World of Warcraft, if we are in a group of any size, we affect others every time we AFK.

The phrase "real life is more important than WoW" is a mantra we hear all the time, and it is true in that you shouldn't shirk responsibilities in the physical world in order to play. However, if you have committed yourself for a period of time to other players, it is the same thing as committing yourself to any group of people in the physical world. Breaking that commitment falls under the same etiquette umbrella, whether in game or out.

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Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Breakfast Topic: Have your guildies inspired you in real life?

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

We all have people in our guilds who are better at WoW than we are. They have amazing reaction times, are great leaders, or put up amazing numbers on the damage or healing meters. But often we know little about the person behind the keyboard. Since my guild is full of mostly adults, we talk a lot about real life in guild chat and on our guild forums. Some of the stuff is merely about TV shows we are watching or books we are reading; seriously, we have a 15-page forum about MMA from all the UFC fans in our guild.

Occasionally, however, truly major life events are discussed, some of which are sad and some are inspiring. We have used the forums to say goodbye to a few members for reasons ranging from personal tragedy, to moving and changing jobs, to simply getting tired of the game.

Some of the stories inspired me to make changes in my own life. One of our guild members talked about his diet and how through exercise and cutting out some fast food, he has lost nearly 60 pounds. This caused me to start watching how much I was snacking during raids and got me back to the gym. Another guild member went back to college for his master's degree, and this led me to look into what it would cost for me to go back and get my culinary degree. Two of our guild members got engaged, and this led me to realize I had better start thinking about ring shopping before my girlfriend gets fed up with me.

Do you ever discuss important real-life events with members of your guild? Have any of their stories made you examine your own life? Have any of their advice or personal insights inspired you to make changes or tough choices in your life?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

All the World's a Stage: Anonymosity

All the World's a Stage, and all the orcs and humans merely players. They have their stories and their characters; and one player in his time plays many roles.

Roleplaying is a journey of trust you take with strangers. You may now and then start out with a group of people you know in real life, but for the most part, the people you roleplay with have no idea who you really are, or why you are sitting here at the computer. You can tell them if you want to, but most people don't ask. Roleplayers tend to keep personal details private, and don't intrude on one another's space.

Besides, other roleplayers don't necessarily care that much about who you "really are" either. They're there to get to know your character, not you as a person, unless your character first makes a very good impression and they decide that they actually want to be friends as real people. Even though you respect each other as people who share the same interest, there's still a distance between you which either (or both) of you may wish to maintain.

And yet, the relationship you have is one of trust. It's not at all at the same level as a best friend of course, but you still have to trust one another in a very creative sense -- you rely on each other to create interesting things for your characters to share with one another. You're not just buying a shirt from a salesperson or holding the door for a passerby -- you're exchanging behavior and language in an unpredictable and totally interconnected way. Any little surprise a stranger brings to an interaction may completely alter the whole game session and stick in your mind as one of your most memorable gaming experiences. Roleplayers have to trust other roleplayers to help make those experiences positive, even without knowing anything at all about one another. Sometimes two characters can even become very close friends, even though the real people behind them do not.

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

WoW Moviewatch: I Gave You

One of the things I think is most awesome about Northrend is the fact that it adds a whole continent of "real-world" scenes to the game. Outland was so out there that it was hard to use any of the in-game terrain for any stories other than those that took place on another planet, but Northrend is a very grounded place -- while zones like Zul'Drak and Crystalsong Forest can seem very otherworldly, there are zones like Howling Fjord and Grizzly Hills that seem much more normal, if no less beautiful.

Today's Moviewatch definitely isn't a crafted masterpiece -- even the creator says it only took him about two hours to make, but it does show how haunting some of this Northrend landscape is. Just the cliffs of the Howling Fjord are enough to complement this stark little song and give it an extra dimension. I can't wait to see some more of the machinima that comes out of the new Northrend locations.

If you have any suggestions for WoW Moviewatch, you can mail them to us at machinima AT wowinsider DOT com.

Previously on Moviewatch ..

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Machinima, Odds and ends, Blizzard, WoW Moviewatch, Wrath of the Lich King, Fan art

You know you play too much WoW if...

I admit it. I play too much WoW. That's alright, if you're visiting this site, you probably do, too. I have found it interesting how WoWisms have made it into my everyday life. I'm not talking about weird things like naming a kid Onyxia or getting plastic surgery to look like a Blood Elf. Some WoW habits just become normal. So here goes, you might play too much WoW if:

...words like gank, pwn, and aggro have made it into your regular vocabulary.
... you find yourself hitting your push-to-talk key to the person next to you, on the phone, or any other place that's not Vent.
... You've had nightmares that involve Death Knights, Murlocs, or *shudder* Gnome Rogues.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Humor

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