Monday, October 26, 2009

You're Doing It.

The game does not matter. So long as you play any game that is part of the massively multi-player online role play genre, you're doing it. Sure, you can make your characters on a Player versus Player server, or even a Player versus Environment server, and think that you are not doing it. But you are. You are role playing. You don't have to make your characters on a server that is designated for role play. You don't have to have an elaborate back story, or even an idea of a back story. Your character's name doesn't even have to be a real name (yes, lolbbqurmom, I'm talking to you). Just the fact that you twiddled with what class to play, what race it would be, what color hair it had, and how many piercings it had made you a role player. Yeah, and you guys out there, playing bouncy little female toons because you'd rather watch a girl's rear while you quest, give me a break. The minute you pretend to be a real girl to gain an advantage in loot drops, or any other matter, you role played.

That was just the beginning for you. Character creation can seem harmless enough, but you had to go out and interact with the non player characters with your new avatar. Now, everything that avatar does is related to it, good or bad, right or wrong, purple or green. You have begun to build a history for it. Did you know that once you got tired of killing boars, so did your avatar? That quest reward that you never got rid of because it matched your avatars eyes? That is history sitting in your bank, or you can call it what it is, role play gear. Did you sit your avatar down in an inn while you went away from your keyboard for a nature call? Your character enjoyed a nice frosty brew while you were gone, and flirted with a barmaid. Or how about all those quests you did to gain favorable reputation with the Skyguard? Your character could be called a flyboy, or a genocidal maniac only interested in wiping arrakoa from the face of Azeroth.

Did you know that denying group invitations pegged your character as a loner? Those snide comments you put up in general chat while you were dutifully having your character pick up quest items made your character add to it's personality, making it a sarcastic, handle with care kind of being. That nasty chat session you had when you got home from school, in trade chat for every bank alt and poor unsuspecting player to see pegged your character as cool in the eyes of every other foul mouthed yutz, and added your character to the ignore lists of more mature players. No player associates these things to you, the person sitting behind the screen, unless they know you in the real world. These things are attributed to a name in the chat channel, a bunch of pixels you threw together, thinking it was just a video game. Boy, were you wrong. You bought a part in the play called World of Warcraft, on the server you made the character on, and now you are stuck with it.

Of course, you could delete your character if, for some reason, it has given you a bad reputation. You could server transfer, or even faction transfer. Name, sex and faction changes leave that character on ignore lists, so if you were looking to wipe the slate clean, it just rearranges things a bit. Whatever you choose, you have learned one valuable lesson. Role play is a very basic part of this game, and you're doing it. Keep your nose clean, and your chat, and for goodness sake, have some fun with it!


Leiandra said...

On a slight counter-point to your last paragraph: I'm convinced that some people simply like to be that person. They're proud of the fact that they're such jerks. Need an RL example? Look at Spencer Pratt. :)

mo said...

this is a great commentary on players and the game. One more thing I think should play into your "personality" are the statistics provided in-game. What is your favorite food, how many times did you /violin at other players, etc, can help paint that picture.

Shawndra said...

@Leiandra Not having a tv in the house (we d/l or watch our shows online) I have to admit to looking that guy up. Yeah, he sounds like one who is proud of their antagonistic nature.

@mo Definitely. Especially how many times certain emotes are used. My husbands main character would get the "dirty old man" title. I think his favorite emote is /lick, followed by /kiss.