When it comes to lore in my MMOs, I have but one thing to say:
This is a reflection of me as much as the lore itself. I just prioritize getting a quest done 10 seconds faster over keeping up with the story. It could be a fine story — as an experiment I read all of the quest text in Biodome 3 in WildStar’s Farside zone and it was actually quite good! — but I guess I’m just not motivated by it.
There is an exception to prove the rule, of course, and that is the series of quests with the walrus people in Wrath of the Lich King. Basically the player has to convince this band of happy peaceful walrus people to join the war against the Lich King, and I got really mad at Arthas for being such a frozen jerk that I had to march nice walruses into battle. Not cool, dude. Not cool.
Anyway, all this is to say that the Warlords of Draenor cinematic was released yesterday and as a lore noob I feel like most of it went over my head. Go ahead and watch it if you haven’t seen it yet:
So first, I’ve seen other people make this point but that warlock dude — Gul’Dan, right? He’s in Hearthstone! — who is offering up what I’m guessing is a fresh cup of Monkey’s Paw Stew is the worst salesman ever. You’re supposed to hold off on the evil grins and threats of dark fates until AFTER he has a sip, guy. Take my word for it, I work in copywriting. (Crazy Gul’Dan’s Used Car Emporium, where every deal will COST YOUR VERY SOUL!)
Later in the video this giant demon dude showed up, and I thought it was Magtheridon because they look the same and Burning Crusade was rad. “Click your damn cube, orc warrior guy!” I shouted at my monitor when they started to fight. It turned out to not be helpful advice as I later learned that this is in fact Mannoroth, who I’ve also killed but didn’t have any obvious weakness to cubes.
After the fight, another orc shows up. He takes off his hood with a Big Reveal Flourish and… no wait, who are you? Is that Garrosh? I’m guessing so but I honestly couldn’t tell without the big tusky shoulders, which I suspect robbed that scene of much of its significance.
I did like the final scene of the cinematic though, because it was easily recognizable even for me. Those orcs are building the Portal door thingy! “I’ve been there!” I exclaimed excitedly to my cat, who looked unimpressed. She’s such a Vanilla elitist.
Blizzard has a reputation for amazing cinematics, and from a technical perspective this one absolutely hit the mark. It’s beautiful, the music is great, the action is exciting. But as someone who might play WoD one day it didn’t really get me excited for the game. I would watch a Gul’Dan ‘n’ Grommash (I looked up his name!) 30 minute animated television show after that, honestly, but I wasn’t really eager to jump in and join the story.
But hey, what do I know? I’m just a noob.
Both Elly and Aro have recently been struck by MMO malaise, and they talk about why they got out of the habit of playing MMOs and whether they’ll ever get back into it.
In other news, Twitch alienated a lot of their users this week with the introduction of a Content ID-like feature meant to prevent streamers from using unauthorized music and audio. Is this feature a necessary evil, or over the top censoring?
Also: Destiny still may or may not be an MMO, but it sure is pretty! And mobile games!
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This is a depressing post about depression. Sorry.
I should post today’s podcast.
Eh, it doesn’t matter. Today isn’t a particularly exciting episode or anything and it’s not like you have a wide audience.
It’s not about popularity. Anyway I have to write a post today. I promised that I would give Blaugust a serious go.
About what? Is it really better to just write boring, shallow content for the sake of hitting publish? You’re going to piss off your readers with this crap.
I’m not sure that’s true. Signing up for wacky blogger events is sort of expected. Let’s just write about something I’ve been having fun playing lately.
But you haven’t been having fun lately. With anything.
Fine, we can read Feedly and catch up on what everyone else is writing about.
Yeah, let the people with actual talent and voice write the blog posts. At least they can stick with a daily post plan.
Shut up, it’s not like that and you know it. Whatever, we can just cruise Twitter for a bit.
Yes, go read Twitter. Go look at selfies of women who are younger and thinner and more talented, and read tweets by people who have a full life because they’re not a slacker like you.
I’m not a slacker. I work hard. And people like me!
Do they? Remember when you told yourself that 100 followers was a sign that people liked you? Now you have way more than that and it never gets better, does it? Maybe you’ll never feel like you aren’t always the lesser person. Maybe it’s because that’s the truth.
Whatever, I guess a break from social media is a good idea. We could read something else online.
Have you seen the news lately? Everywhere is full of hate and fear and depression right now.
Well that’s true. Forget it. Let’s go offline for a bit and do some work.
Good idea, because one day someone is going to notice that you don’t know what you’re doing and you don’t belong here. And don’t you think your co-workers are nicer to each other than they are to you? I bet they talk about you. That’s what you get for trying to make friends with people.
I’m only telling you this because it’s the truth.
Please be quiet.
You’re uninteresting and mediocre. You could disappear and it wouldn’t make a difference. But hey, I bet there’s some relief in knowing that nothing you do will ever matter.
I think I’ll just sit here until it gets dark.
Okay. I’ll keep you company.
Over on 8bit Kitchen today I wrote a beginner’s guide to canning jams and pickles!
The real world has got me kind of down this week, folks, so for today let’s Blaugust this place up with a simple list!
I bike commute to work for about an hour every week day, and podcasts are my entertainment of choice while I ride. Below is a list of what I currently have in regular rotation.
(And while I’m at it let me just give a shout-out to editing. Please edit your shows, my fellow podcasters. You may have 20 minutes of really interesting, intelligent, and/or funny things to say, but if it’s embedded in 40 minutes of giggling or awkward silence or idle chatter about what your cat is doing right this minute I’m going to have a hard time making myself listen to it. Sorry.)
Crate & Crowbar – These guys are mostly professional PC gaming journalists, but don’t hold that against them.
Videogamer UK – Lots of console talk here which I don’t particularly care about but the hosts are hilarious so whatever. (Also pro journo types!)
Retsutalk – The podcast for the hosts of Retsupurae, can be hit or miss depending on the guests.
Angry Chicken – A Hearthstone podcast I just started listening to, but I like the host comraderie.
Hearthpro – I also just started listening to this branch of the Blizzpro family. Angry Chicken probably has the edge with me so far, but both are very informative.
MMOsketeers – I’ve talked about this show before already, but Teppo and Jen still produce a great MMO podcast.
Couch Podtatoes – Izlain and Eri?! Hey I know those people!
Contains Moderate Peril – CMP hits a perfect balance between intelligent discussion of games and being a joyous fan.
Not Game Podcasts
The F Plus – They read horrible things found on the internet and mock them. I’m pretty sure I’ve listened to all 146 episodes of this show.
Movieing On – Part of the same network as MMOsketeers, this show talks about mostly smaller movies from 1999 or earlier.
Welcome to Night Vale – Obvs.
NPR: 7AM ET News Summary Podcast – Five minutes every morning to get an overview of what’s going on in the world.
What I’m Missing
Horror / Cult / Genre movie podcasts. I keep trying shows out but I’ve had bad luck finding one that isn’t also weirdly sexist.
Also a cooking podcast — do these exist? I should investigate…
A few weeks ago a bunch of us blogger people were talking on Twitter and somehow it came up that we had just about all considered starting a food blog at some point.
The problem was that we of course already have our hands full as bloggers, plus we need time to play the games that we write about! The general consensus was that none of us had the time or energy to devote to a second blog, even if food and drink and cooking was a legitimate additional hobby.
And so an idea was born.
Introducing 8bit Kitchen, the new collaborative food, drink, and cooking blog! I solicited people in the original Twitter conversation that inspired this ideaplus other MMO bloggers here and on the social medias to join up and write.
Right now there are posts up by myself, and Murf and Jeromai and gamerlady, and author invites out to a bunch more folks. The type of content is broad: photos of dinner, recipes, reviews, funny essays, tutorials, posts about our culinary history and inspirations, basically whatever people want to post on the topic. And thanks to it being a collaborative blog, we can all just post when we want and not sweat it when we don’t.
(“But Liore,” I hear you saying. “Isn’t it a little crazy to launch a new blog of any kind during Blaugust when many bloggers are already stretched thin?” And I will reply, “Umm.. so.. umm. NEXT QUESTION.”)
So check it out! And subscribe to us on WordPress or Twitter to stay up on posts! And if you want to contribute, let me know. All MMO bloggers are welcome.
Now to work on my Intro to Pickling…