Monday, May 31, 2010

The Story Within

World of Warcraft has a story. But I am not sure what the story is.

One of Tobold's recent posts suddenly has me thinking about the effectiveness of the story in a game, and why I even bother playing.

So, why do I play a game whose story I do not even know?

First, lets take a look at what I think I know of World of Warcraft's story:

The Titans made Azeroth, they are the world builders of the gods. Maybe. Dragons are probably at least as old as the Titans, and so are the demons.

(Remember, I am only telling the story as I know it, for the real story, I would suggest WoWWiki, I've read through some of the World of Warcraft story there in the past and some of it is pretty good.)

The oldest and most predominant race on Azeroth are/were the trolls. Most of the ruins you see in the game are of troll nature. Their god went mad and some sort of insanity spread throughout the race so that we now see them amidst a dark age that they may never recover from.

I do not know how the Dwarves, Elves, Ogres, Goblins,Tauren, or Gnomes came to be upon Azeroth...the Dwarves might be natives alongside the Trolls, but I am not sure. Humans lost their home world to the Burning Crusade's demonic onslaught and somehow came to be ported (or something) to Azeroth, for safety (so much for that).

At some point the undead came to Azeroth as the Scourge and another god went mad but was absorbed by a human hero. He too went mad and made his own undead army to thwart the scourge but really, he wants it all.

Someone made a very powerful, god-like dragon really, really mad. He's coming to Azeroth too because, well everyone else seems to be there, so why not?

The Dreani had their world torn asunder by the Burning Legion and crash-landed on Azeroth because, again, that's where the party is at.

And, that's about all I know of the story behind the World of Warcraft. Sure, there are thousands of smaller stories, but that is the Big One. As far as I can relate it at this time, anyway.

So why do I play the game if I am obviously not playing for the story? Because I like pretty pixels. I love good-looking characters and eye-catching armor and absurdly-designed weapons. I love spell effects. I love an open world that allows me to go just about anywhere, do anything, even if those options are somewhat limited.

I play for the gear, but not for the treadmill of gear acquisition.

Right now, my main character has a set of level-appropriate gear that, while not spectacular and all disco-flashy, looks good as a set of matching parts. And her swords are nothing to laugh at either.

That is all it takes to please me and keep me playing World of Warcraft.

I can be a simple person at times.

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