Cross the Streams

Blog Azeroth – Shared Topic for the week of June 27th, 2011
Shared Topic Idea: The Consequences on RP of Multimedia information

With Cataclysm Blizzard is plunging again into releasing their story through different channels be it books, comics, whatever. But this time they are keeping information exclusive to the new areas and not including it in the game. Is this unreasonable? How do you think this will affect the roleplaying community in Warcraft? After all they are specifically since their built upon the foundation of the lore.

– Oathblade

I am not a roleplayer. My feet are firmly entrenched in the casual, pve-grinding, altoholic, achievement-junkie, completionist world (of Warcraft). But, even though I don’t run about on RP servers, in perfect costume with coordinated events and storylines, I still love the idea of role play and want those who are practitioners to be able to enjoy themselves.

Blizzard releasing their canon through multiple streams does not, from my view, pose a threat to this activity. I have never read any of the books, I have only read Ashbringer from amongst the comics, and I have only played World of Wacraft, none of the previous strategy games. Despite all these lore hamstrings, I still feel connected to the world of Azeroth in a tangible way.

If I wanted to jump into roleplay with my existing stable of characters, I would feel perfectly comfortable in setting up backstories, exploring friendships with others, and fully immersing myself in the life of my characters. The additional material that Blizzard releases through various means would just expand the universe that my characters find themselves in. The basis is eagerly waiting in World of Warcraft, ripe for the taking.

Now, yes, some events would cease to make sense if the accompanying materials weren’t accounted for. In order to fit in perfectly, I would have to keep track of all of the different source streams and tailor my story to fit in with the larger work that Blizzard is presenting.

But even relatively major discrepancies between a personal storyline and Blizzard’s established canon don’t get under my skin. After all, Blizzard themselves have had to retcon events and invent meandering explanations to rectify lore-gone-wild.

After all, the point of playing Warcraft, be it through PvP, PvE, or RP, is to enjoy yourself. Perhaps some people would be annoyed beyond reason if their story did not match in perfectly with Blizzard’s story. In fact, I am sure that there are those that would stand for nothing short of perfect synchronicity. (I fought hard for perfect synchronicity in Assassin’s Creed… although an achievement was involved.)

Those people, since they are playing World of Warcraft, can likely afford to and almost certainly do put out for more than just the game. I have often pondered grabbing some of the books or heading back for the Warcraft games. The only thing stopping me is me. If I were waist deep in RP, I would be all over those books, three times through each game, and gobbling up every source of lore material available to me. The more, the merrier, right? Right.

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~ by Aliera on June 28, 2011.

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