Archive for November, 2011

Monday mailbag

Posted in Mailbag with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 28, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

I’m writing this from Brackenwall Village.  (Thank goodness Spazzle set me up with some kind of why-fly doohicky that lets me still access the blog from out here, because believe you me, the ogres aren’t exactly pimped out when it comes to computer resources.)  I’ve been in Dustwallow for a bit, but so far I haven’t had the chance to get working on the Grimtotem prisoner.  Not long after I arrived, a Grimtotem raiding party attacked the village, so we were pretty busy fighting them off.

(Or, rather, most of the others here were pretty busy standing around watching in awe while I fought them off.  Gotta admit, I do have kind of a thing for killing Grimtotem.)

Anyway, as you might imagine, that didn’t go so well for them.  Still, it ate up a whole lot of time, and right now Dontrag and Utvoch are leading scouting parties to try to track down the survivors.  Once they get back, and Krog and the ogres are done shoring up the defenses (we’re probably going to step up patrols just to be safe), we can get back to work.

In the meantime I figured I could take care of this week’s mailbag.  Just a couple letters this week, but they’re pretty good ones.  The first one, in fact, wasn’t even sent to me directly, but was posted online as a sort of open letter, and I thought it might be fitting for me to offer an open response.  Here’s a short excerpt:

Dear Warchief Hellscream,

On behalf of myself and my co-workers Thathung and Grimful, I, Wabang, would like to announce that we are laying down our axes in peaceful protest, to formally ask you to give us back our former jobs as proud Orgrimmar Auctioneers.

I know when you became Warchief you thought you were doing us a favor by “freeing us” from what you called boring, tedious bookkeeper jobs. We could see how happy you were when you told us that we could finally don our armor and brandish our axes like the proud orc warriors we were, and not be stuck behind a desk any longer.

We appreciate the gesture, Warchief. We really do. It’s just that…well…we kind of liked being Auctioneers.

You may not realize this, but Thathung, Grimful and myself chose to be Auctioneers. We were not forced into it. We all carefully studied and honed our arithmetic to be able to perform an Auctioneer’s speedy calculations, and as you are no doubt aware, private tutoring by the Blood Elves is not cheap. Now that we have lost our jobs as Auctioneers, we can no longer afford to pay our outstanding debts, and the Grand Magister gets rather nasty/polymorphy when he is not paid.

This is just a small snippet of the original letter, which I’d really highly recommend everyone going and reading in full.  In fact, go do that now.  I’ll wait.

You done?  Wait, no?  The hell, dude?  Go read it.

No, seriously.

I’m waiting.

Okay, that’s better.  Now on with business.

And yeah, hoo boy, here we go.  Look, Wabang, I understand that you’re not thrilled with the arrangement.  To tell you the truth, I’m not so happy about it myself.  That is, you’re right on the one hand – all things being equal, I’d rather have orcs like you and Thathung and Grimful fighting like the orcish soldiers that you are, and it DOES make sense to have the goblins tending to things like the auction house and the bank, what with them being a whole lot less useful on the battlefield.  But I also hate to have you guys pushed out of the jobs that you liked.

I’m not going to try to hide behind it being some deal we cut.  Sure, Thrall was the one who made arrangements with Gallywix to bring the Bilgewater Cartel into the Horde, but first of all, he didn’t make him any special promises as far as jobs or privileges the goblins would be getting, and second and more importantly, really, even if he did, I wouldn’t give two shits about pissing off Gallywix.  It’s fucking GALLYWIX, for fuck’s sake – if anything the thought of annoying him is a bonus.

So here’s what it comes down to: right now in Orgrimmar, we’ve got way more people than we have jobs to keep them occupied.  The sudden influx of goblins didn’t help matters.  People like to give me grief over the slums that we’ve got in Orgrimmar right now, but contrary to what they might tell you, that wasn’t by design.  It’s just reality – after the Cataclysm, frankly, we only had so many resources to do so much rebuilding, and some part of town was going to end up getting the short end of the stick.  And when it came time to divvy up the areas, yeah, the least desirable part of town got left to the latest arrivals.  Well, them and the trolls.  But I don’t need to go on about them.  (Side note: if the goblins and trolls are going to complain about their slum, have them take a look over in the Valley of Wisdom.  Not my fault if the tauren in Thunder Bluff were willing to send their people extra resources to pretty the place up.)

But more to the point…here were the goblins, stuck in the low-rent district without much in the way of belongings, and pretty much no jobs to do.  The one thing they’re good at collectively is business.  So into the auction house and bank they went…thing is, though, those auctioneers aren’t really raking it in as much as you might think.  Because they’re actually not working just for themselves.  That was part of their contract, in fact.  They’re actually in there working, pretty much, on behalf of the majority of the goblins over in the slums.  Whatever they’re making is getting channeled back over to that part of town to keep the whole cartel stocked with whatever they need.  And don’t think for a minute that it doesn’t pain the goblins to have to keep their heads above water through a system that you could pretty reasonably describe as “redistribution of wealth.”

And here’s the ugly truth of it, too, Wabang.  The goblins as a group needed something.  But just as important…you guys CAN do something else.  Frankly, they can’t.  So – as I’m sure you’ll appreciate given your training – it really just comes down to the math.

Here’s one other thing, too.  While hiring the goblins to run the auction house makes sense in some ways, I have to admit I still don’t trust them entirely.  Not least of all because of Gallywix, but I mean, also, come on, they’re goblins.  (I don’t want to be getting any texts over that one, Spazzle.)  And along those lines…I do think that you might have taken your assignment a little too much at face value.  I mean…when I told you I wanted you to keep an eye on the auction house, Wabang, yeah, you were being assigned to stand guard…but like…I also want you to keep an eye on it, if you see what I mean.  Because…you know…just sayin’…if someone were to catch the goblins doing something sketchy, skimming money off the top that they’re not supposed to, pulling a fast one on some of the higher-priced Firelands loot…well, believe you me, I wouldn’t be reluctant at all to reevaluate the current staffing situation.

Now, who would I put in charge of watching out for stuff like that?  Spirits know I wouldn’t be able to catch something like that – have you seen the attic in Grommash Hold?  I can barely keep my own junk organized.  So what would we need to catch any shady business?  Hmm, well, someone with an extensive mathematical background, a sharp financial mind, someone who already knows the ins and outs of a pretty complicated system so they can spot abuses and loopholes…but if I were going to give someone a job like that, I couldn’t be obvious about it.  Say what you want about the goblins, but they’re not idiots.  If I stick a bookkeeper right next to them and tell them they’re going to be having their every move watched, they’re sure as hell going to make sure that they either don’t do anything sketchy at all, or they go to MUCH greater lengths to keep it covered.  So the way to do it would be to plant someone with the appropriate skills nearby, keep them in a position to keep a close watch, but in a role that would still make sense for them (say, I don’t know, an orcish grunt) in an assignment that would be justified (like, oh what the hell, an armed guard watching over a room full of valuables).

Just food for thought, Wabang.  Hang in there and we’ll see what else we can do to help make life a little smoother for you guys.

 

Hail, Warchief!

During my tours of duty with the Horde Medical Corps, I have noticed some … puzzling behavior. Something just isn’t quite right with the Warsong Clan.

I understand what the Frostwolves are all about: kicking Dwarf butt from one end of the valley to the other, then showing them the exit. And I understand what the Defilers are up to: capturing resources for our use, and/or denying them to the Alliance. (Either one works.) I get what the Kor’Kron are doing on the Isle of Conquest. Most of our field armies have sensible, understandable goals.

Then, I arrive at Warsong Gulch.

I follow a couple of Horde soldiers, and we infiltrate the Sentinels’ stronghold. We make our way to the center, I’m thinking to take out their commander. But no, they snatch the flag, and bolt. We promptly retire to Warsong Hold, and then one of them taunts the Silverwing from our parapets.

It was about this time that I realized that the Silverwing were trying to do exactly the same thing to us.

No one was gathering resources, or preventing the enemy from doing the same. No one was trying to interfere with the enemy’s command and control. Seemingly, it was all about grabbing flags and talking smack.

Ordinarily I wouldn’t care. But now they’ve got the Dragonmaw doing it, too. Have they both gone nuts? Or am I missing something obvious?

–A Concerned Citizen

See, ACC, this is what happens when people totally lose sight of their history.  The whole flag-capturing deal in Warsong Gulch actually did make sense once upon a time, but after a few years, and some serious turnover in the personnel there (on both sides, apparently), it seems like nobody remembers the point of it all.  This is actually a classic case of what happens when people blindly go through the motions without bothering to learn the reasons why.

So, a teachable moment from Garrosh!  Lucky you!

So okay.  Once upon a time, when Grommash was chieftain of the Warsong Clan, and Horde and Alliance were both going balls-to-the-wall to try to gain control of Ashenvale and its resources, both sides would have regular air drops of supplies.  Armaments, explosives, rations, everything.  Sometimes even heavy equipment, as we started to become able to bring in zeppelins for supply runs.  With the airships we have these days, I’m sure you can see the possibilities.

Anyway, though, if you’ve ever flown over Ashenvale, you also know how bloody impossible is can be to see where anything is down there.  It’s nothing but dense forest as far as you can see in every direction (dense forest that’s been fucking dipped in glitter, no less), and even in the areas that have been cleared out, there’s still a lot of visual interference that would make it hard to target those air drops properly.  So way back in the beginning, both sides would use flags to mark the drop sites for their couriers.  One side or the other would have a spot marked, wyverns or hippogryphs would fly on in, spot the flag, drop the goods, boom.  With all the back and forth between the two battling sides, too, the flag system just made more sense, because by the time the supplies were airborne, the battle lines could have shifted, one side or the other could have lost control of one of their bases…it just made sense as a way of signaling where a secure spot would be.

Somewhere in the middle of all this, someone had the bright idea that hey, if we could go steal one of the Silverwing’s flags, we could stop them from getting the supplies they need.  What’s more, if we bring THEIR flag back over to an area that WE control, we could trick the Alliance couriers into delivering their supplies to US instead!  So, double win!  So from that point, the Warsong Outrunners would launch regular raids to try to steal the Silverwing flags.  Eventually, the Silverwing caught on and started doing the same.  At that point, it became a much bigger deal to keep control of our own flag, too – there’s not much benefit in stealing their flag to get their supplies, after all, if they’ve gotten our flag to steal OUR supplies, right?  That’s just a wash.  Hell, it might even be a loss – whose supplies do you think are going to be better, theirs or ours?  Horde pride, bitches!  Lok’tar!

So all of this actually made sense.  But apparently, somewhere along the line, both sides started losing sight of the actual reason behind the strategy, and just started fixating on the flag-stealing thing.  Which…is really kind of sad, when you think of it.  I might have to look into assigning some new leadership up there, so our forces can actually have some remote fucking notion of what they’re doing again.

As for the Dragonmaw…you’ve got me.  I might have to take this up with Warlord Zaela again.  (Even money on whether she’ll use the occasion to start flirting with me again.  Which I’m sure will set off a whole other mailbag.)

News from Feralas, no news from Dustwallow

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 26, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

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A few quick updates on the ogre situation.

Orhan Ogreblade reports that Grimtotem activity in Feralas has shifted.  They’re still making frequent attacks on the Gordunni ogres, but apparently they’re becoming more focused.  The ogre outpost in the hills north of Camp Mojache has pretty much been wiped out (now maybe the goblins can go dig up their own damn ore what with the coast being clear), but they’ve pretty much stopped attacking the southern camps.  From what we can tell, nearly all their efforts now are being focused on the ogres around Dire Maul.

Meanwhile, the Grimtotem raider that Krog and company are holding down in Brackenwall hasn’t provided much information just yet.  Krog’s been working on his interrogation, but so far not much luck.  I know Dontrag and Utvoch have been trying to help Krog with the questioning, so I told Krog that maybe he wants to try doing it with D&U somewhere else, because don’t get me wrong, I like those two, they’re dedicated soldiers, and spirits know they mean well, but I’m pretty sure there’s some law of physics that says there’s a finite number of words that you can pack into a single room.  And having those two nearby has got to burn through your quota awfully damn fast.

Otherwise, I’m not sure exactly how Krog is approaching the interrogation, but I’m concerned that he might be trying to be a little too white hat about the whole thing.  I told him the old saying, you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar…point being, maybe he should cover the Grimtotem guy with honey, then tie him down in one of those areas in the swamp that’s swarming with giant flies.  That might get him talking a little faster.

See, this is why I need to be in charge.  My creative approach to problem-solving.  You’ve got to think outside the box.  And then put your enemies in the box, and light it on fire.

Which is why, by the way, I’ve decided that I need to take a more hands-on approach to all this.  No more sending grunts to do a Warchief’s job.  I’m flying down to Dustwallow to take charge of the interrogation myself.  And this Grimtotem dude better start talking quick, because I can tell you one thing, I’m not the guy you want to talk to if you’re looking for a little extra slack for the Grimtotem.

Taking off as soon as Mortimer is done with brunch.  Updates to follow.

Happy Pilgrim’s Bounty

Posted in General with tags , , , on November 24, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

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Quiet day in Orgrimmar, mostly consisting of me having some quality time with lots and lots and LOTS of food.

Best wishes to all my loyal readers and minions for a good Pilgrim’s Bounty this week.  Be sure to gorge yourselves on utterly unhealthy volumes of food.  If you run out, go raid the tables set up in Alliance towns and eat some of theirs, too.  Then laugh at them.  I’d recommend starting with Varian’s spread, just because.

Maybe this will start getting us some answers

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 22, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

New update from Dustwallow.  I just got word from Brackenwall that our forces have captured a Grimtotem raider involved in the ogre attacks.  As it turns out, Krog, Dontrag, and Utvoch were able to lay a trap to lure some Grimtotem out, with the help one of the Stonemaul ogres, name of Ogron.  I guess Ogron used to stand watch on the activities of Paval Reethe and other Theramore humans, but ever since Reethe’s death he hasn’t had a whole lot to do, but he just kept hanging out in the swamp out of habit pretty much…so it was easy enough to use him to lure some Grimtotem out for an attack, because hey, lone, unattended ogre.

Except, of course, he wasn’t unattended.  Krog, Dontrag, and Utvoch were all standing under cover, and apparently D&U had some elaborate plan for how to spring the trap once some Grimtotem showed up, involving smoke bombs and goblin gadgets and tar traps and some shit like that.  Only when the Grimtotem attacked, D&U got too busy bickering over the details of the trap, and totally got themselves distracted from what was going on, and meanwhile Ogron was getting beaten like a rented mule (really not sure if that’s more sad or more funny), so Krog just came out and ambushed them.  He managed to kill three Grimtotem by himself, and get the last one running – all of this while Dontrag and Utvoch are still arguing like an old married couple, mind you – and finally Krog ended up chasing him until the raider tripped on branch and went flying smack into one of D&U’s tar traps.  Which they couldn’t have been more pleased about, once they noticed.

So I guess it all worked out in the end.  He would have gotten away if it wasn’t for those meddling orcs, or some such.

So, they’ve brought the raider back to Brackenwall village for questioning.  We might have Draz’Zilb do some kind of magic mojo to help Krog and company get him talking.  With any luck we’ll start getting some answers about what’s going on with the Grimtotem.

Desolace postscript

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 21, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

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Not too many letters this week, so I’m going to hold off on doing a mailbag.  (Get with the program and get writing, people!  Your Warchief commands it!  garrosh1337@gmail.com)

Also, a quick note on my recent trip to Desolace.  I think I mentioned at one point that I had a couple stops to make there, but I only ever really blogged about Shadowprey Village (annoying as that was).  Before coming back to Orgrimmar, I also made a stop at Ghost Walker Post.  I didn’t write anything about that at the time, partly because I was trying to save time for the trip back home, and partly because it was generally pretty uneventful.  It was also a little depressing, so I really just didn’t want to dwell on it much, but it’s probably just as well for me to give it a quick write-up now.  Better than dwelling on this Grimtotem business.

I’ve been out to Ghost Walker Post once before, and I have to admit, I always find the place pretty depressing in general.  Not so much for the outpost itself, which is fine as far as outposts go, but because of the area right below it – the kodo graveyard.  Go ahead and laugh if you want, but ever since I moved to Azeroth I’ve had kind of a soft spot for kodos (maybe they just remind me of my pet clefthoof from when I was a kid).  So seeing the place where kodos go to die, with all the skeletons and corpses all around, that’s just a little more than I want to take most days.

At least the surrounding area is a little less depressing-looking these days.  I know the Cataclysm brought water into the area to help feed the regrowth of vegetation, but even still, it’s pretty incredible to see the change.  The whole area around the outpost has turned lush and green, and there’s even the beginnings of a forest starting up really quickly.  The Cenarion people – hippie druids, yeah, but still less annoying than those DEHTA fuckers – have set up a base there at Karnum’s Glade, although I didn’t actually go over there, because, you know, druids.  Still, I had to look around the new wildlands there, just because it really is a pretty amazing sight.  Even when you figure in the new sources of water, it’s incredible that the place started recovering so quickly.  It’s enough to make you wonder whether there’s something more going on there, beyond just the influx of water.

Which…yeah.  Really have to wonder.  I probably shouldn’t even mention this, because people are probably going to think I’m crazy, and it really honestly could be my imagination playing tricks on me.  But at one point when I was looking around the wildlands, off in the distance, I could have sworn I could see the figure of a tauren – not fully solid, but partly transparent, even a little shimmery.  Maybe it was just the light and the glare of the sun, I don’t know.  But it’s not just that.  If it were just a tauren it could have been anybody, and with all the druids around, not to mention Ghost Walker Post, there’s no shortage of tauren in the area.  But I recognized him.  I would know him anywhere.  The stature, the totem always in hand…the steady gaze that always seemed to be sizing me up and coming away just disappointed enough.

It was Cairne.  I swear on the spirits I thought I saw Cairne.

He looked at me, and he looked away, and just scanned around the wildlands like he was assessing his work.  And then he was gone.

At least gone from view.  I haven’t been able to get him out of my mind since.

YOU CHOOSE the next EPIC VERSE!

Posted in EPIC VERSE with tags , on November 18, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

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The title pretty much says it all – the chance you’ve all been waiting for!

I know I haven’t been offering up a lot of poetry lately, so I thought I’d change things up and give you, my loyal and devoted readers and minions, a chance to choose the topic of my next masterpiece.  I’ll let the poll run for several days, then get to work on the winner.  Also, if you have other ideas for topics you’d like to see me give the EPIC treatment, go ahead and make your suggestions in the comments to this post, and if I see some promising ones I’ll try to oblige there as well.

Brackenwall update

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 16, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

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Like I mentioned a few posts ago, I’ve had Dontrag and Utvoch sent over to Brackenwall Village to help Krog with his investigations.  I’ve been trying to keep those two in mind after the whole business in Stonetalon, seeing as how I probably wouldn’t have gotten to the bottom of things in time if they hadn’t pointed me in the right direction (I mean, okay, they did send me to Thal’darah Grove when it was about to have a bomb dropped on it, not exactly pro timing there, but if I’d been any later I wouldn’t have known Orthus Cliffwalker was there or been able to crack down on Krom’gar before he could do who knows what else, so they at least made all that possible.)  Mind you I like those two just fine, they’re dedicated soldiers and all, but crap they like to talk.  I almost want to lock them in a room with Tirion and see whose head caves in first.  Just assigning them to the job in Dustwallow took like twenty minutes what with them having to chime in every four words.  So…I’m sure Krog is going to have fun with them.  They’ll be plenty of help, I’m sure, but I’m also kind of sorry I won’t get to see the look on Krog’s face the first time he gives those two an opening to babble.

Side note – until this last transfer, Dontrag and Utvoch were still in Stonetalon, working on the cleanup efforts there, mostly out of Krom’gar’s old base.  Since Krom’gar was…relieved…I’ve appointed High Chieftain Cliffwalker as Horde overlord for the area, and put our forces in his charge.  While his base at Cliffwalker Post is being rebuilt, he’s running operations out of Sun Rock Retreat (good to see activity going on there again), and in other happy news, it looks like his reassignment of troops in the southern regions has gone a long way to pushing the Grimtotem back.  What with the latest goings-on with the Grimtotem attacking the ogres, it’s good to see they’re being clamped down on pretty well in other areas.

Anyway, I should be getting some updates from the Brackenwall boys soon.  Depending on how things shape up, I might head down that way to check on matters myself.

Monday (yeah, yeah, okay, Tuesday) mailbag

Posted in Mailbag with tags , , , , , , , , , on November 15, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

Apologies for running late again this week.  A Warchief’s work is never done, especially when the Warchief in question has lazy-ass minions who drag their feet about doing it.

So this week we’re hearing back from a couple correspondents who’ve turned up in the mailbag before, along with one surprise letter from an unlikely source, also from a familiar face.  Let’s get started…

 

Hello mighty warchief!

It’s your most ardent admirer herself, Uukra.

I would like to stress this: *I* am your most devout and ardent admirer, not some cupcake-eating wussie.

I bet they’re a mage and didn’t even cooked it themselves.

Besides, cupcakes will make them fat… unlike a fit, strong death knight (and certainly female!) orc like me.

Oh, and just so you know… I have been following your underwear suggestion. ;)

Your faithful fan & minion

–Uukra the Hallowed

Now see, the “certainly female” line there DOES make me worry…because if there’s one thing we’ve learned since I’ve been doing this blog, it’s that it’s TOTALLY possible for people to go online and pretend to be things they’re not!  So now this makes for a whole new worry – what if these female admirers of mine aren’t actually girls?  I suppose that might happen sometimes on the internet, right?  Or maybe that’s still kind of a stretch, I don’t know…

Anyway, as it turns out, our old friend Wega (the cupcake eater from last mailbag) managed to sneak a look at my mail somehow, and already has a few choice words in response…

 

My Dearest Warchief,

It seems that Uukra and I can agree on two things…your supreme awesomeness, and the fact that mages are wussies. The only thing more satisfying than seeing a mage crumple to the floor, is ambushing and one-shotting those D.E.H.T.A. punks.

I bet if she’s following your underwear suggestion, she also wears one of those barely-there plate bikinis that leaves her kidneys unprotected. Assuming she still HAS kidneys. Why would you want a cold, rotting thing that plays with ghouls when you could have a rogue like me? I’m not some half-orc like that tramp Garona, either.

Yours Always,

–Wega

So I’m totally with you on the mages, blinky buggers.  And the DEHTA punks.  I’m not going to get into the whole Garona thing, just because we can still use her help with Twilight’s Hammer, and let me tell you, she is SOME kind of moody.  Like if I let one thing slip that she doesn’t like the sound of, hoo boy, just moping and bitching all day, and don’t even start me on all the passive aggressive bullshit, and how genuinely one of our best fighters can also be so damn whiny and high-maintenance is totally beyond me – oh crap, wait, I’m doing it again.  She’s going to read this, and then she’ll be off to the races with the whiny.  How do I erase this again?  I can never find the right key.  Hold up, this looks like a cross-out function, maybe that can erase stuff.  SHIT THAT’S ONLY SLIGHTLY BETTER.  UGH.  SPAZZLE!

Anyway, um, on the up side, from this whole back and forth between Uukra and Wega here…well…

<gets popcorn and sits back>

Continue at will, ladies!  (Sometimes it can be good to be Warchief.  I should add this to the list.)

Speaking of getting mail from girls, though, here’s one more that came in addressed to Spazzle, but definitely deserves some attention from yours truly:

 

Spazzle,

It has come to the attention of the House of Nobles of Stormwind that the Leader of the Horde, Warchief Garrosh Hellscream has a blog on WordPress as does our esteemed Head of the Alliance, His Majesty King Varian Wrynn [epic title withheld].

As the two are notorious for despising one another, we think it would be of great entertainment if the two could somehow be played off one another.  Certainly if we make the Warchief and King aware of one another they may go ahead and link to one another’s blog anyway in efforts to defame the other.  This could be a mutually beneficial relationship.

His Majesty’s blog can be found at http://varianwrynn.wordpress.com

Warm Regards,

–The House of Nobles of Stormwind

Well consider me made aware, noble chumps!  Hah!  So Varian’s decided to start a blog too, huh?  I WONDER WHERE HE GOT THAT IDEA.  Hey, Varian, remember when you were writing in and making your snarky comments about me writing a blog?  Huh?  How’s that working out for you now?  Hahah!

Anyway, though, since he’s decided to get into the blogging world, he definitely deserves a nice warm Horde-style welcome.  So I’d definitely recommend all of you, my loyal readers and minions, drop by and say hello.  A comment on one of his posts to let him know you’re there might be good.  Tell him I sent you.

Now everyone say it with me:

Fuck you, Varian.

The Hour (and fifty-seven minutes) of Twilight

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , on November 12, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

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One of my comments from the other day mentioned some of the machinima that gets made for Earth Online.  Now obviously there are a lot of fan-made videos, and some of those are pretty impressive.  Music parodies, for instance, kind of inspired by real-world artists like EmberIsolte or GreyFoo or whoever.  (Yeah, yeah, I know they’re Alliance, but hey, art cuts across all boundaries, right?  When the Alliance finally crumbles before the might of the Horde, I’ll probably let the handful of them live so they can perform at Trollapalooza down in Sen’jin.)

But another one of the impressive things about Earth Online is how much work they put into incorporating machinima into the game as part of the world culture.  The game has a HUGE amount of cut scenes built into it, and while some of them are directly connected to questlines and other gameplay, there’s also a ton of them that are just there to help flesh out the game world – basically the idea is that the videos are supposed to be what the in-game citizens of Earth watch for entertainment.  You go to various viewing centers in the world, and click on something to start the movie, and it’ll just run on your screen while your character is “watching” it in-game.  Thing is, it’s really pretty amazing that they put as much effort as they did into making these things, seeing as the ones that are there for the world culture really don’t serve much practical gaming purpose, other than maybe drop a clue or two about some of the quests you might go on at some point.  But they still put in the time and effort to create them just to add more depth to the world.  They must really be raking in the gold on subscription fees if they can afford to pay people to crank these things out, let me tell you.

The other cool thing about these built-in videos is the way they’ve based so many of them on things in the real world.  Earth Online is packed full of little in-jokes like that, but these machinima especially.  For example, there’s a series of pretty lengthy films obviously based on the actual adventures of Harrison Jones.  (For anyone new to Earth Online, by the way – totally check out the first three if you can find them, they’re really well done.  But the fourth one, seriously, don’t even bother.  I have no idea what they were thinking.  I mean really, ETHEREALS?)  Or, they have another series of machinima about these giant mechanicals, where the main villain is obviously supposed to be a reference to Negatron out in Netherstorm.

But here’s the one I get the biggest kick out of, really.  There’s this series of horror-ish videos about this really bizarre (and kinda lame) (without the “kinda” part) love triangle between a human woman, this San’layn dude, and a worgen.  They don’t actually call them San’layn or worgen in the movie, but that’s obviously what they are.  But that’s not even the important part, because by itself that’s not really all that interesting, but they manage to add this one more layer of reference to it that actually makes it kind of genius.  See, these horrory love-triangle-ish videos are actually really…well…they’re just awful.  Like just horrifyingly bad.  Like bad on the level that it gives you THAT feeling – you know the one, The Feeling you get when you see something so shitty that you’re embarrassed not just for yourself for actually watching it, not even just for everyone who was involved in making it because they have to have their names on such a piece of shit forever, but you actually feel embarrassed on behalf of your entire civilization for having collectively allowed it to come into existence.  You know, THAT level of bad?  The kind of bad that actually makes you hope for the end of the world, just because any world that could allow something like this to happen just DESERVES to come to an end.

So, you’re probably wondering, how does that make these videos a GOOD thing?  Sounds pretty awful, right?  Well here’s the thing.  It’s the in-joke that makes them awesome.  Because get this – they’re all called “Twilight” something-or-other.  Think about that a second.  These horrifying, nightmarishly bad movies that just make you want to root for the end of the world…are all named after the insane cult that’s actually trying to bring ABOUT the end of the world, and restore the Old Gods in some horrifying nightmare apocalypse.  Really, let that sink in for a minute.

Seriously, how is that NOT fucking beautiful?

Open season on ogres?

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 11, 2011 by Garrosh Hellscream

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Some disturbing reports coming back to me from a couple different fronts today.  Short version: the Grimtotem seem to have gone batshit crazy.

Actually, let me correct that.  I mean, let’s face it, the Grimtotem were already pretty batshit.  But apparently now they’re managing to go batshittier.

Word’s come in from Feralas that the handful of Grimtotem in the area have started launching attacks on the Gordunni ogres.  There doesn’t seem to be much of a pattern so far, just one strike after another in the ruins of Isildien, the Gordunni outpost near Camp Mojache, sometimes even venturing all the way into Dire Maul.  Here and there some of the ogres working with us out of Stonemaul Hold have gotten caught up in the attacks, but according to Orhan Ogreblade it doesn’t seem like they were targets specifically, just caught in the crossfire since, you know, when you’re in a mood to kill ogres, you’re not always too picky about which ones.

Side note – can’t really blame them there.  I know back in Nagrand I used to get into ogre-killing moods all the time, and when that happened I didn’t care which ones I was hacking to pieces.  “Big, tall, really REALLY fat guy” really does start to bleed together after the first few seconds, right?  Oh shit, are some of our ogres going to read that and get all pissy with me now?  Do I need to find the damn delete key again?  Wait, no, what am I talking about?  They’re ogres.  They can’t read.  Moving on.

So anyway, the thing with the Grimtotem in Feralas is strange, but if that’s all that was going on I wouldn’t really care a whole lot.  It’s not like the Gordunni have been anything but a pain in the ass to the Horde in Feralas, so if one group of my enemies want to spend their time killing off another group of my enemies, hey, cool, have at it, boys.  But I also just received a report from Krog in Brackenwall Village indicating that the Grimtotem that had settled in Dustwallow Marsh have stepped up their raids on the Stonemaul ogres as well.  Granted the Grimtotem have been a pain in the ass in Dustwallow for a while, but ever since they razed Shady Rest Inn it’s seemed like they’ve mostly been focused on the humans out of Theramore.  Not sure why they’d be taking an interest in the Stonemaul ogres now, but it’s starting to look like the clan all of a sudden has it in for ogres all over the place.

I’m dispatching Dontrag and Utvoch down to Dustwallow to help Krog with the ongoing investigation.  (I figure he could use some extra brainpower down there, what with him being mostly surrounded my ogres.  Intermittently dead ogres at that, these days.)  Meanwhile I might need to step up my own plans for an inspection trip to Feralas and try to see what’s going on down there.  Not sure what the Grimtotem are up to, but I kind of have a vested interest in getting in the way of anything that’s going to make their lives smoother…

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