Sunday, November 28, 2010

Yes. This Makes Me a Nerd.

Several years ago for Christmas, Jon gave me this plaque. It hangs proudly in the hallway of my home.It's one of my favorite things. As I have discovered with the online game I play, World of Warcraft, it's also very apropos.

Dragons are a feature of pretty much any mythical story. "Beowulf", the first epic poem of the Anglo Saxons, tells about the hero battling a dragon. We have come to realize that "dragons" were real to these people, although what the dragon would have been is up for debate. It's not that much of a mental leap to have a previously unknown animal be labeled a "dragon" when it makes off with Uncle George and you can't stop it. Every civilization seems to have had a dragon of some sort.

In World of Warcraft, some dragons are friendly but most would rather kill you first and ask questions later. My guild had lots of fun running around the world killing the "world dragons", 4 green or greenish blue dragons that started out hard to kill, but as we got better armor and better skills, became something of a laugh. But they were dragons and if we saw them in their dragon haunts, the cry went up "Emeriss is in Duskwood!" and we'd mobilize to go kill a dragon.

World of Warcraft is set to what's called "expand" again on December 7th. The game has been changed in anticipation of this event. The dragon you see above is the reason why. According to lore, and Warcraft has deep lore roots, having started as a stand alone game for PlayStation and that ilk, Deathwing tried to take over but was defeated and sealed underground beneath the sea. On November 23rd, the 6th anniversary of World of Warcraft, he broke through his prison and changed the world. Places I'd known and loved were destroyed and changed. It's been fun to run around and see what's changed and what hasn't.

Deathwing is very much a part of the game scape beyond just altering the landscape. There is a chance to encounter him. Randomly, he shows up in one of the zones in the game and "destroys" it. I was running around with my best in-game friend, Bill. We had just tamed a beetle for him as a hunter pet, which, if you don't play the game, makes no sense, but bear with me here. We're riding back to the main town and my display goes blood red. Seriously. The sand, the mountains, the animals, everything. I thought, at first, there was something really wrong with the computer. I don't know what I would do if that happened, which is yet an other reminder that I need to make CD's of these thousands of WOW screen shots and movies and move them off my computer to make room for the game.

Anyway, the world around us erupted in flame and I briefly saw the tail end of an enormous dragon.
You die and you have to run back to your body. Plus, your gear has been battered so you need to go repair once the event is over. You also get an achievement, which is in-game recognition of something unique. That's my lowly dwarf hunter lying dead on the red sand. A guild member said the sky turns gray as Deathwing approaches but honestly, if you're going to tame beetles, you're not looking at the sky.

Beyond the fact that I play an online game whose target audience is male between the ages of 18 and 35, Bill and I agreed we are definitely "nerds" or "geeks" or "neeks" or "gerds", whatever appellation fits. I sat at my computer watching, with my mouth hanging open and then we spent the next 2 hours bragging to anyone we know that we'd been "toasted by Deathwing". And, pointing this out before you do, I am now bragging on my blog. Yup, that's me there, crunchy and good with ketchup.

Silly dragon. I didn't have far to run to get back to my body and my repair bill was a paltry 62 silver. I pay more after a few minutes of beating on skeletons in Icecrown Citadel. But, I got the Deathwing achievement which is very rare. So far, only one other person I know of in the guild has been roasted.

So, my advice is, "Don't stand in the fire but in this case, enjoy it."

Beverage: Orange Cranberry Juice



  1. Ohhh, lord, I can't wait to get home and play! Heh, this is the first time I've even seen a computer in 5 days, but I swear logging back on will be a first priority tomorrow no matter how behind I am on things.

    I logged off in the park in Stormwind just for RP reasons. I think I should have gotten an honorary achievement for it. :)

    D / Z

  2. The park...yes. I won't spoil it for you. Let's just say you will run around with your mouth hanging open.

  3. Ooh, and in my absence from the Internet, I totally missed your ageing! Hope the hippo, birdie, and ewes were good to you. ;)