Archive for August, 2012

March of destruction

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 31, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

We made our move on the Barrens today.  Northwatch Hold never knew what hit it.

While Baine and Vol’jin got their people moving from Mulgore, I gathered our troops in Orgrimmar and started our march from there.  Mokvar, Malkorok, and most of the other likely suspects came with me.  Eitrigg stayed behind to watch the store while I’m away.

We marched down from the Crossroads to Ratchet, where the blood elves, goblins, and Forsaken had sent ships carrying their troops.  Of all the leaders, though, Gallywix was the only one who had actually shown up himself, and even he wasn’t actually planning to join the fight.  Probably just as well – I don’t really see his fat, cigar-chomping ass being much help on the battlefield, and as long as the other goblins are here with their siege engines, that’s all we need.  Meanwhile, Sylvanas and What’s-His-Name sent lieutenants – Captain Frandis Farley and Kelantir Bloodblade, respectively – to lead their troops.  I don’t know anything about Farley other than him seeming kind of permanently slackjawed (literally), but Kelantir says she trained under Liadrin, so hopefully that bodes well.

Once all our forces were gathered, we marched down to Northwatch.  Then we struck.  Orcs, elves, goblins, and Forskaen from one side, tauren and trolls from the other.  It was all the Northwatch soldiers could do not to crumble immediately.  I’d figured going in that these humans wouldn’t be much of a match, but just to make sure – and give a new potential weapon a field test – I ordered into battle the special regiment of shaman who’ve been preparing for this campaign.

The shaman moved in close to the hold, under heavy Kor’kron guard.  Then they focused their incantations on the boulders just off the shore.  The stones shook, and steamed, and started to melt.  They grew so hot that not even the surrounding water could cool them – the sea itself boiled as the shaman channeled their magic.  The rocks shifted and melted and fused together, and then…breathed.  And then they walked up onto the land, molten giants, lashing out furiously out furiously furiously efil out ot furiously giants emoc furiously emit seod furiously lashing spots kcolc lashing eht nehw ylno sleehw i elttil yb havent ffo dekcilc done gnieb si anything ti sa gnol sa forces daed si forces emit silvermoon forces emit silvermoon yals silvermoon skcolc Silvermoon Silvermoon forces Silvermoon forces, along with the troops we’d brought from Orgrimmar, cut down hundreds of invaders and held them back as best they could, but the undead just kept coming.  Thousands of them.  Ghouls, gargoyles, abominations, vargul.  They came and came, wave after wave.  Finally, the eastern wing fell, and countless undead flooded across the Elrendar River into Eversong.

Dranosh didn’t look away from the sight while he reminded me – as if he had to – that we had to hold them here until the shield was up, that we had to give Kalecgos and the others more time.  I watched the droves of undead rush closer and said, “I’ll get the five thousand on the left, you get the five thousand on the right.”  He just nodded and answered, “We can split the ten thousand in the middle.”  And down we jumped.

Scourge are like hornets – they might sting individually, but they’re only really dangerous because they can swarm you with so many at once.  Dranosh and I slashed through I don’t know how many skeletons and zombies.  Bits of Nerubians strewn everywhere.  Switching off, trading places, one of us starting to dice up the newest batch, then giving was for the other to finish it off.  Dranosh hacking one wing off a valkyr, then grabbing her as she careened on one wing toward a pack of skeletons and letting her trajectory carry his blade clean through them all.  Me getting a couple dozen zombies chasing me double-file down a gully, then heroic leaping to the back of their lines, then charging to the front again, running straight up the middle and swiping both my axes through zombies on either side while I ran.  Both of us barking a kill count at each other as we slashed away.

At one point we positioned ourselves back to back while duking it out with a pair of abominations.  While the aboms lashed their chains at us and we countered each swing, Dranosh leaned back to me and said, “Ogre dodge?”  I answered, “Count of three” – we counted down, gave one last feint, then both ducked out of the way while the aboms swiped their chains clean through each others’ heads.

We were cutting a swath through waves of undead while the Silvermoon regiments regrouped and the gunships finally arrived, when it started to dawn on me between swings that it had been years since the two of us had fought side by side.  Only it hadn’t.  In some foggy half-remembered memories, we’d gone into battle together so many times many times times oga many sraey times together dnasuoht times net nageb i worromot havent dna done worromot anything litnu revo triumphant laugh eb triumphant tnow triumphant yadretsey triumphant triumphant laugh triumphant laugh, with Malkorok joining in beside me, as we watched the handful of Alliance survivors flee like the rats they are.

It took a little doing to get the molten giants reined in, but my shaman were able to set them back to rest.  Baine wasn’t exactly thrilled about us playing that particular elemental card, and he had a few choice words about it.  Malkorok shouted him down some, but it probably wasn’t necessary.  They both mean well, but they also both tend to get a little too worked up a little too quickly.  Good thing I’m around to be the level-headed one.

We’ve set up camp here in Northwatch while we recuperate and tend to our wounded.  Not too many of those, though, as it turns out – a tribute to how smoothly the entire plan ended up being executed.  We’ll stay here until the time is right for the main event – the attack on Theramore.  There are still a few variables I need to make some decisions on, but we have time.  Right now it’s time to savor the first of many triumphs.

Victory for the Horde!

Readying for war

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , , on August 30, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

Preparations are going well for our moves against the Alliance.  I’ve issued orders to the various leaders for troop assignments and gotten confirmation back.  Begrudging confirmations in most cases, but confirmations nonetheless.  Strangely enough, the only one who seems even remotely jazzed about us going on the offensive is Gallywix, although I suppose it might just be that EVERYTHING seems more exciting when you’ve been hiding in a cave or at the bottom of the ocean or wherever the fuck he’s been all this time.

Granted, I’m pretty sure he’s only enthused because his cartel is getting paid and because he figures taking over Kalimdor will mean a stranglehold on trade.  And I’ll be the first one to admit that I was lukewarm at best about the goblins joining the Horde in the first place.  Part of that was Thrall sending that representative from the Lost Isles with a letter telling me to admit them into the Horde – like, dude, knock it off with the backseat Warchiefing, okay?  I mean I know I was still new at the job and it was a whole “acting Warchief” deal, but come on.  Plus it really didn’t help matters that after he told me to admit the goblins, he decided to be cute and finish the letter with “And yes, I would like fries with that.”

Anyway, though, Gallywix and his people are turning out to be useful as far as getting siege engines built, along with another heavy combat transport or two that may come in handy for a possible part of the Theramore plan.  So at least they’re good for something.

If nothing else, it’s good to finally get this plan back off the backburner again.  I know it’s been a while since I’ve mentioned moving on Theramore, and some of you were probably starting to wonder if I’d just dropped it.  Never was the case.  I just wanted to make sure I wasn’t rushing into a bad game plan out of anger and setting us all up for the whole thing to blow up in our faces.  That and realizing there were a few parts of the original plan that probably weren’t that great an idea.  And then we had that whole anti-plague business start up in Southshore, and off we went to the Caverns of Time…and yeah.  Anyway, now we’re all back – well, at least until the next time the timeline decides to go all KAPOW on us again, but there’s no sense sitting around picking our noses waiting on that to happen.  And everything’s ready to go.

When he had the big council meeting in Grommash Hold the other day, Baine and Vol’jin in particular were fairly grumpy about what I had planned.  With Vol’jin I can kind of understand, seeing as he pretty much just likes to be a pain in the ass.  But I’m not too crazy about this whole vibe I’ve been getting from lots of people since I’ve been Warchief, this whole “Hold on, hold on, I know we’re at war with the Alliance and everything, but OMG we can’t actually ATTACK them like WTF!” deal some people seem to have going on.  Uh, yeah, fuckers, that’s what you fucking DO.

So when I issued marching orders for the first step of our attack plan, I tried to build in a little reminder of what’s actually going on for Baine and Vol’jin.  Baine is going to gather his forces at the Great Gate in Mulgore.  Vol’jin, likewise, is rounding up his trolls from the Echo Isles and take them to Mulgore to join forces with Baine.  Granted, that’s a long trip for them, but it should pay off in a few ways.  One, those scrawny-ass trolls could probably use the exercise.  Two, it helps give the tauren some backup for any fighting they get into as they cross the southern Barrens.  And three, it means that on their way to Northwatch Hold, Baine and Vol’jin will both be leading their people right by what’s left of Camp Taurajo.

I hope they march slowly.  Let them take a good long look and remember what these humans they’re so eager to keep the peace with have done to us.

I’ve got to make a few stops around Orgrimmar to make some final preparations.  With any luck, by the end of the day we’ll be ready to start our march from here.

More updates soon.

Live Blog: Tides of War

Posted in General, Transcripts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 28, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

ONE YEAR OF THOUGHTS AND MUSINGS…

[Today marks the one-year anniversary of Garrosh’s first post on the Warchief’s Command Board.  To commemorate the occasion, which serendipitously coincides with the release of Jaina Proudmoore: Tides of War by Christie Golden, this post will tie into some of the events of the novel in the form of a LIVE BLOG.  The post will be added to over the course of the night so that you will be able to read it in progress as it is written.  Continue refreshing this page to update its contents.  Also feel free to use the comments to engage with other live readers as the on-the-fly story unfolds!]

I haven’t mentioned this with everything else that’s been going on lately, but several days ago I sent letters out to the other leaders of the Horde to come to Grommash Hold for a special council.  An inner circle of key advisors and I have been working on a number of plans over the past few weeks, one in particular that I’ve been keeping on the back burner for far too long.  The time has finally come to begin the next stage in the glorious history of the Horde, and it’s only fitting that everyone gather to bear witness to its beginning.

Practically all the major players have been arriving the last few hours — Baine Bloodhoof and Hamuul Runetotem from Thunder Bluff…Sylvanas Windrunner from the Undercity…what’s-his-name, that blood elf guy from Silvermoon.  Vol’jin’s come up from the Echo Isles, even though I usually don’t have a whole lot of patience for him.  Hell, even Trade Prince Gallywix crawled out from underneath whatever rock he usually hides under to attend.  Everybody’s brought a considerable contingent of aides and lieutenants with them, and naturally I have a good-sized contingent of my people from here in Orgrimmar to show their support — Eitrigg, obviously, along with a slew of other aides and supporters like Shok Narnes, Captain Drok, Invoker Xorenth.  Mokvar, of course, who’s going to make it a whole lot easier to record and post the meeting.  Pretty much the only heavy hitter not here is Saurfang, and, well, I can see why he would decline the invitation, considering.

I waited outside the war room while everyone gathered and got settled into their places.  I had my aide Malkorok — who’s been growing more and more important in our developing plans — watched over the gathering, then prepared them for my grant entrance.  See, in addition to being an ongoing advisor and newly appointed supervisor of internal security, Malkorok’s also a pretty damn good hype man.  So he took a minute to work up the crowd, and then…well, hey, why don’t I kick it over to Mokvar, who I think Spazzle hooked up to be able to feed his meeting notes straight on up to the blog…

 

MALKOROK:  Your leader, the mighty Garrosh Hellscream, approaches!  Show him all honor!

The assembly stands and burst into cheers as Garrosh enters, holding his arms wide with Gorehowl in hand.

GARROSH:  I bid you all welcome!  You are true servants of the Horde.  Your Warchief calls you, and you come.  <surveying the assembly>  Much has transpired since I assumed the mantle of Warchief…

VOL’JIN:  <aside to Baine>  Most of it bad, mon.

GARROSH:  We have faced trials and danger, threats to our world and our way of life.  And yet, we persevere.  We are the HORDE!  We will not let anything break our spirits!

Garrosh raises Gorehowl above his head, and, starting with the orcs present, the assembly cheers.

GARROSH:  You do not disappoint me.

VOL’JIN:  <aside to Baine>  Wish I could say da same, mon.

GARROSH:  You are the finest representatives of your races – the leaders, the generals.  And that is why I called you here.

Garrosh settles into his throne and gestures for the assembly to sit as well.

GARROSH:  There is a menace that has been present for too long, which we must now root out without any mercy.

VOL’JIN:  <aside to Baine>  Aw, no, mon, don’ be so hard on yaself.

BAINE:  <struggling to stifle his chortling>  Stop…stop it!

GARROSH:  A threat that has challenged us for years, to which we have, until recently, turned a blind eye in the mistaken notion that tolerance of a little shame will do no harm to the mighty Horde.  I have—

Vol’jin and Baine glance at each other.  Vol’jin doubles over and lets a chuckle escape.

GARROSH:  Hmm?  You had something to add, troll?

VOL’JIN:  No, no, dat was just a sneeze, mon.

GARROSH:  A sneeze.

VOL’JIN:  Yah, mon.  Allergy season, ya know.

Garrosh exchanges a look with Malkorok, who shrugs.

GARROSH:  Um, yeah.  As I was saying.  And have said, and say again – ANY shame is a great shame!

VOL’JIN:  <aside to Baine>  A damn dirty shame, mon.

Baine lowers his head over the table and chortles.

GARROSH:  Any— Um, you too, birthday boy?

BAINE:  <wipes a tear from his eye while looking up>  Apologies, Warchief.  I think I may be having some…trouble with allergies as well.

VOL’JIN:  I tink dere might be a bug goin’ round, mon.

GARROSH:  Oh for fuck’s sake… Ugh.  Never mind.  I…where was I again?

MOKVAR:  “Any shame is a great shame.”

Baine and Vol’jin double over slightly, barely containing another fit of chuckles.

GARROSH:  Right, right.  Any shame is a great shame – ANY injury is a great injury!  And apparently any sniffle is a great fucking sneezing epidemic.  But whatever.  Point is, WE WILL ENDURE IT NO LONGER!

Vol’jin smirks at Baine and gives an exaggerated nod.

GARROSH:  We have a destiny to fulfill.  And there is an obstacle to that destiny – one that we must crush beneath our feet like the insignificant insect it truly is.  For far too long – nay, even a MOMENT would be too long! – the Alliance pests, not content with their stranglehold over the Eastern Kingdoms—

SYLVANAS and LOR’THEMAR:  <overlapping>  Hey now!

GARROSH:  —have wormed their ways into OUR lands, OUR territory.  Into Kalimdor.  Chipping away at our resources and sullying the very earth with their presence!  They are crippling us, preventing us from growing, from reaching the heights that I know – I KNOW – we are capable of achieving!  For I believe in my heart that it is not our fate to bow and scrape and sue for peace before the Alliance.  It is our right to dominate and control this land of Kalimdor.  It is ours, and we will claim it as such!

Led by Malkorok, many of the orcs stand and cheer emphatically.  After a few moments, the cheers subside.

GARROSH:  To that end, it is my intent to lead the Horde on a mission that will restore us to our rightful path.  Our first target will be Northwatch Hold.  We will raze it.  And once we have reclaimed that land as ours, we will move on to the next step – THERAMORE!

Baine, Vol’jin, Malkorok, and several others spring to their feet – some cheering, some crying out in protest.  Frandis Farley – one of Sylvanas’ Forsaken lieutenants – shouts over the din.

FRANDIS:  Warchief!  The lady Jaina is too powerful!  She has been passive and quiet.  Rouse her, and we will have war on our hands – a war we are not prepared to fight!

BAINE:  She has behaved with fairness time and again, when she could have responded with force or deceit!  Her diplomatic efforts and her decision to work with Warchief Thrall have saved countless lives!  To storm her realm with no provocation does not give honor to the Horde, and it is foolish besides!

MOKVAR:  Also I really, really hope this isn’t about your old guild leader

BAINE:  Wait, his what?

MOKVAR:  He had an old GM he was pissed at who turned out to be from Theramore.

VOL’JIN:  A GM from what, mon?

MOKVAR:  This MMO we play.

BAINE:  You’re…kidding.

VOL’JIN:  Hey mon, you don’ live in da basement in here too, do ya?

GARROSH:  WILL YOU SHUT IT?  Dammit, trolls should be seen and not heard.  Ideally not seen, either.

VOL’JIN:  Oh, so you wan’ me invisible, mon?

GARROSH:  If only.

VOL’JIN:  Like da Lich King’s horse!

GARROSH:  ENOUGH ALREADY!

VOL’JIN:  Sorry, mon.

Garrosh lets out a long sigh while Malkorok edges closer to Vol’jin’s side of the room, eyeing the troll chieftain uneasily.  Garrosh finally gathers himself.

GARROSH:  Now then…  First of all, Thrall has given leadership of the Horde to me.  Whatever HE did or did not do means nothing now.

VOL’JIN:  <aside>  Aye, you’ll be seein’ ta dat, won’t ya, mon?

GARROSH:  I am the Warchief, to whom you have all sworn loyalty.  My decisions are what matter.  And those of you who condemn my plan do not even know what it entails.  Be silent and listen!

Some – but not all – of the assembly return to their seats.

GARROSH:  You respond to this as if the conquest of Theramore were the goal.  I tell you now, it is only the beginning!  I do not speak solely of destroying the human foothold in Kalimdor.  I speak also, and even more vigorously, of the night elves.  Let them flee to the Eastern Kingdoms as we crush their cities and take their resources!

VOL’JIN:  Drive dem all out?  Dey been here longer dan we have.  An’ we try somet’ing like day, da Alliance be over us like bees on da honey!  You just be givin’ dem he excuse dey been looking for!

GARROSH:  My soul is sick of the back-and-forth in Ashenvale that has gone on nearly since we set foot in this world.  And I am even more sickened by our own blindness to what we should and must do.  The night elves claim compassion and wisdom, yet they murder us when we harvest a few trees that would provide life-giving shelter!  The night elves have lived here long enough.  Let them now linger only as a bad memory.  It is the Horde’s hour to reign on this continent, and reign we shall!  This is why Theramore is key, do you not understand?  <scanning around the chamber>  We crush Theramore, we stop the potential of Alliance reinforcement from the south.  And then – we give the night elves their due.

SYLVANAS:  <rising>  Warchief, the Alliance may indeed not send reinforcements.  Not at once, at least.  They will turn and vent their wrath instead upon those of us in the Eastern Kingdoms – my people and the sin’dorei.

Sylvanas looks to Lor’themar, who remains still and silent.

GARROSH:  Wait, who’s that guy again?

SYLVANAS:  Warchief?

GARROSH:  The blood elf guy.

SYLVANAS:  He’s…  <rubs her hand over her face>  Never mind.  The point is…Varian will march on my borders and destroy us!

EITRIGG:  Warchief, a word?

GARROSH:  I have heard from you already, my advisor.

BAINEWe have not.  Eitrigg was friend to my father and advisor to Thrall.  He knows the Alliance in a way few do.  Surely you do not object to the rest of us hearing what such a wise elder has to say?

GARROSH:  <glares at Baine, then nods to Eitrigg>  You may speak.

EITRIGG:  It is true that the Horde has done much to recover from the Cataclysm.  And it has been under your leadership, Warchief Garrosh.  You are right.  Yours is the title.  Yours are the decisions.  But yours also is the responsibility.  Think for a moment about the consequences the consequences consequences si the ti consequences moment ereh consequences dna gnikam consequences about erew ew about erutuf tahw kniht ot delbuort su ogre fo yna yldrah dodge dna dias consequences eh erutuf consequences eht dire consequences gnikam dire erew dire ewdire dire consequences dire consequences if we fail.

DRANOSH:  I know that all too well, Eitrigg.  Which is why I’m not going to do this if everyone isn’t in agreement.

Garrosh blinks a few times confusedly, then exchanges a concerned look with Mokvar.

CAIRNE:  <watching Garrosh closely>  Overlord?  Are you alright?

Garrosh looks up at Cairne and stares for a moment.

GARROSH:  I… Yeah.  I’m fine…Cairne…  Just had something in my eye for a second.

MOKVAR:  Might be allergy season…

DRANOSH:  At any rate… We all know what’s at stake here.  I know I’ve said more than once that I don’t intend to send more troops into a losing situation, but I think it’s safe to say this is a special case.

VOL’JIN:  I don’ tink dere’s anyone gonna argue, mon.  Quel’talas ain’t gonna hold long on its own, an’ we can’ let dem get to da Sunwell.  Not again.

DRANOSH:  A vote, then.  One last battle, to hold the line, at least long enough to do what needs to be done?

EITRIGG:  <scanning around>  All in favor?

Cairne, Eitrigg, Vol’jin, and Zaela raise their hands.  After a moment’s pause, Garrosh and Mokvar do the same.

EITRIGG:  And opposed?

VOL’JIN:  Dere’s nobody else here, mon.

EITRIGG:  Well, still.  It never hurts to be thorough.

DRANOSH:  I should get you to do my paperwork for me.

GARROSH:  You know, I bet he’d be good at that.

EITRIGG:  I would not wish to intrude on your confidential documents, Warchief.

GARROSH:  I’m sure he has plenty more important things to do with his time.

DRANOSH:  I am Warchief.

GARROSH:  Better you than me.

DRANOSH:  <smirks>  Spirits help us.  You’d be terrible at it.

GARROSH:  Well, it’s a good thing Thrall stuck YOU with the job then, isn’t it?

DRANOSH:  <still smirking> No, but really.  I think a basic campfire would probably do a better job than you.

GARROSH:  <smirks back>  Okay, enough.  That shit is hurtful.

DRANOSH:  What, are you turning sensitive all of a sudden?  What’s next, are you going to start writing poetry too?

GARROSH:  You never know.

VOL’JIN:  Tell you what, mon, we can plan da first readin’ after we out of da fire.

DRANOSH:  <turning back to the war map>  Well, we’re all agreed.  I’ll send a messenger to Silvermoon.  The rest of you know what needs to be done to prepare.

VOL’JIN:  Aye, mon.

ZAELA:  Yes, Warchief.

DRANOSH:  Let’s get to work, then.  Metting adjourned.  Lok’tar ogar!

EITRIGG:  Lok’tar!

ZAELA:  Lok’tar!

VOL’JIN:  For da Horde!

GARROSH:  This will either end up turning the tide the tide tide si the ylno tide up saw tide sa gniht tide turning hcus on turning si ereht elpoep laudividni fo sratava yratnemom ogre  eht ni tpecxe ecnetsixe dodge on sah hcihw your noitidnoc diulf your accept your a accept si accept emit accept accept you accept your oath.

Garrosh looks around confusedly again, finding himself absently patting the head of a goblin who appears to be kneeling in allegiance.  Malkorok approached, ushering Lor’themar Theron with him.

LOR’THEMAR:  You wish to see me, Warchief?

GARROSH:  I do.  I understand you are the leader of the blood elves.

LOR’THEMAR:  Um…yes, Warchief.  We’ve met several times.

GARROSH:  Have we?  Hmm.  Must have slipped my memory…

LOR’THEMAR:  I’m in your Earth Online guild.

GARROSH:  You are?  Huh.

LOR’THEMAR:  Um…

GARROSH:  Well, anyway.  Out of all our leaders in there, save Gallywix — who’s supportive merely because he sees coins to be made — you are the only one who doesn’t question your Warchief.  Not even when Sylvanas tries to play upon your sympathy.  I respect that, elf.  Know that your loyalty to me is duly noted.

LOR’THEMAR:  The Horde embraced and supported my people when no one else would.  I will not forget that.  And so, my loyalty, and that of my people, is to the Horde.

GARROSH:  I am the Horde’s Warchief, Lor’themar.  And as such, I AM the Horde.

LOR’THEMAR:  You are its Warchief.  Is that all you wish of me?  My people are anxious to return home and prepare for the war that is to come.

GARROSH:  Of course.  You may go.

Lor’themar walks off, rejoining the rest of the Silvermoon contingent.

GARROSH:  <to Malkorok:  That one is worth watching.

MALKOROK:  They are all worth watching.

MOKVAR:  Um…if I might ask, what’s that supposed to mean?

MALKOROK:  <stares at Mokvar a moment>  Suffice to say, scribe, that you are not the only one keeping notes.  <turning to Garrosh>  If you’ll excuse me, Warchief, I have a few matters to follow up on.

Captain Drok approaches and waits close beside Garrosh.

GARROSH:  Go ahead, Malkorok.  We’ll check in again later.

DROK:  Warchief, a moment?

GARROSH:  What is it, Drok?  Oh…OH…is it…?

DROK:  <nodding>  I’ve just received word from our team in Northrend, sir.  We have it.

GARROSH:  <slowly grins, then nods>  Good, good… I love it when a plan comes together.

 

The pieces are falling into place.  Everything is lining up.  I’ll be sending marching orders to the various leaders within the next day, and soon enough everything will be underway.  Everything is going exactly to plan.

If only I didn’t have this nagging feeling the universe is trying to tell me something.

More soon.

 

 

[Thanks to everyone who dropped by live to follow the blog in progress!  And also, as you may have noticed, the night was capped off with the addition of a badass new header for the blog, generously and masterfully provided by Snapcaster (Cho'gall server) from Dreamweave Design.  Many thanks for making the place more presentable!  Additional thanks to Rioriel from Postcards From Azeroth for providing the header image for this post -- click here to see the souped-up Postcard version!]]

Monday mailbag

Posted in Mailbag with tags , , , , , on August 27, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

Well, in my last mailbag, I asked you all to send in pictures of your Earth Online pets, and you obliged!  Let’s get to it, and see what everyone’s sporting for vanity companions these days.  Before Land Down Under comes out, and they introduce like 200 new companion pets, and everybody loses their fucking minds.

 

I just finished my rep grind a few days after your call for submissions.  I picked out a small puffball of a dog (I think the breed is called Pomeranian) that would be a tasty snack for my raptor Masher if the dog was out in Azeroth.  He gets along well with my minions (I get 4 because I am a Stay at Home Mom class) and loves to clean up the food they leave behind so I save time on cleaning.  He even washes my dishes for me.  My smallest minion is also my most messy so she and the dog get along well because she is always a source of dropped food for him.

–Toka, Orgrimmar

Hey Toka.  Interesting with the Mom minions.  I’m guessing that works pretty much the same as the minions I get from the Teacher class.  Although, from the sound of it, you have to feed yours, which I don’t.  But then, I do have to keep a steady supply of lessons coming, so I’m guessing it’s probably a similar mechanic, just with the serial numbers filed off.  Come to think of it, I bet there’s a lot of overlap between the minion mechanics for the Mom and Teacher classes.  If you don’t do a good job staying on top of yours, do they run the risk or rebelling on you too?  That’s a pain in the ass.

 

Hail, Warchief!

I also did the Humane Society quests to pick up a dog. Actually, I also did a “rescue” quest a while back, but Jamie died of old age a few years back. Not long after that, I got Duke here from the Humane Society.

He’s an Austealian Shepherd — a shout-out of sorts to the next expansion. Duke’s quite a bit bigger than your terrier … which, mostly, just means that he costs more in-game currency to feed.

And a bit of advice for Hannahlee … seriously, just show up and start training. That application thing is just for show. Your qualifcations, or lack thereof, will soon be obvious. Possibly painfully obvious. (Which is where the priest trainees come in…)

Now, I need to get back to that “acceptance test” raid that my guild is running…

– A Concerned Citizen

Now see, ACC, that’s kind of interesting.  I didn’t know these pets could die of old age.  Or of anything, really.  Now I’m going to be all paranoid about running across the street when I have Sawyer out for fear of getting him hit or something. Do they have leashes in Earth Online?

Also, I like the fact that this dog is an Australian Shepherd.  Since you mentioned having him going back a few years, that just shows you that the devs really did have this whole Australian expansion in mind going back a long time.  So seriously, all you people who’ve been whining about LDU being a big joke expansion and “OMG Australians?!” — it’s been in the lore for fucking ever so have a Kaja-Cola and a smile and shut the fuck up.

 

Hail Warchief!

Here are two pics of my companion pets. 

Picture one is actually a couple of years or so old.  It is of my eldest son and our dog “Boo.”  Boo was an Australian Shepherd, and passed away a couple of years ago.  She was a great dog.

The second pic is of our cat “Darcy.”  She is still around and ruling the roost.  Typical cat. 

Your loyal Reader,

–Zwingli

Well I’ll be damned, another Australian Shepherd, huh?  I guess you and ACC must have done the same quest, huh, Zwingli?  Another one dying of old age, though.  I guess this really must be a game feature I haven’t noticed.  Maybe I just missed this since I haven’t even been playing for a year yet, so I just haven’t been around long enough to notice pets getting older and dying?  Or is this an Australian Shepherd thing specifically?  Or wait, is this “dying of old age” thing mean there’s a limited number of charges on summoning the dog, and that’s just the turn of phrase players use to refer to running out?

Anyway, it’s sad to lose your pet — I know I won’t be a happy camper if I ever run out of charges on Sawyer — but I guess you have to give the devs credit for being that committed to realism.  You know, other than the fact that YOU can die like a hundred times and just pop back to life like nothing happened.

Also, Zwingli, do you play one of the Mom / Dad classes like Toka?  I notice you have a minion like hers in the first picture.  I also like the fact that it looks like you can set your companion pet to protect your minion.  Come to think of it, that would sort of make sense, seeing as the dog is a Shepherd.  Still a neat feature.

 

Dear Garrosh,

Here are screenshots of our dog pets we got with rep! I like the idle position – if you stop moving for a while it just lays down and plays dead!   It seems the other one is way more spastic though, and barks a lot more.  I can’t quite get it to idle like the other one.  I had to turn in-game sounds off because it wouldn’t shut up! They’re pretty cute though and I was told I couldn’t get a third because they tax my computer’s resources way too much.  Stupid rules!

–Roika Dark, Brill

Well I’ll be damned, speaking of repeating breeds, Roika, looks like your dogs are West Highland terriers like mine.  The one in the first picture in particular looks like he would be a kindred spirit with Sawyer, seeing as he’s a lazy little butterball.  Not sure what to make of the problem you seem to be having with the barking, though.  My dog hardly ever makes a peep — don’t know if it’s just that I have a lousy audio card, or if there’s something that procs the barking that I’m not doing, or what.  So anyway, since you have the same terriers as I do, I’m guessing you did the same rescue quest? How fucked up is that puppy mill sub-zone?  I swear, on those rare occasions when I get in a cranky mood, I still go back there just to beat the snot out of the millers some more.  I didn’t know the quest was repeatable, though…  Something to keep in mind.

 

Hi Garrosh!

You wanted to know about our EO pets so here’s some pix of mine. I got them  through a rescue quest.  A friend of a friend was LFG and as things worked out, I was there to lend a helping hand.  They try help me, but are easily distracted by food.

Strength and Honor,

–Zug Zug

Ah, another rescue quest, huh?  I only really noticed the puppy mill quests for dogs, but I guess it stands to reason there would be some rescue quests for cats too.  I wonder if there are any other animals you can get from those.  From what I remember, cats are the only type of pet that you can buy outright from the Humane Society based on rep.

 

Hey mon,

I saw you be wantin’ ta see our Eart’ Online pets, so I figured you be likin’ dis one.  I been spendin’ a long time lookin’ for da right one, mon!

I tink he be likin’ you!

–Bob, Echo Isles

WTF!!!  You know what?!  I’ll bet you anything THAT’S NOT REALLY THAT GUY’S PET!  And hey, guess what else, asshole?  If that IS your cat, then your cat’s a fucking IDIOT, because its spelling and grammar is fucking TERRIBLE.  Fucking illiterate virtual cat.

 

Hello, mighty warchief of the Horde!

I write in answer to your call of pictures with our Earth Online pet…

There you can see Ravi, a European Longhair Cat, who is my steadfast companion as I adventure on that strange virtual planet.

FOR THE HORDE!!!!

Faithfully yours *hint hint*

–Uukra

You know, after all the time Uukra has spent e-flirting with me in these mailbags, I suppose it was just a matter of time before she started sending me pictures of her…erm…never mind.

 

Hey Garosh

I’ve been a pet colecter for a long time in EO so its great to be able to show off a little – some of these are prety rare it realy took me a long time to find them all. You asked for it!

These are my dogs – the black shepherd mix is Kismet, and the golden retriever is Cosmos.

Then there are my cats – Tiger, Cage, and Salem.

Now for the realy intristing ones!

These are my snakes – Medusa (the black one) and Hades (the white one).  I got them from a quest in New Mexico and I had to choos one of them but the next week their was a server problem and the quest got reset so i got to go back and do it again and get the other one :)

I also got a scorpion off a rare spawn in Africa.  I havnt givin him a name though because I’ve mostly been more worried about making shure he doesn’t sting me he has already stung three people in my guild and there toons died!

So after running around getting all these pets I finaly got my Zookeeper achievement and look at the bonus pet I got! So so cute he is an African pygmie hedgehog I named him Moe.

Sory if I spamed you with pictures!

–Eravia

HOLY CRAP that’s a shit ton of pets.  Some crazy ones in there too, Eravia, nice job hunting them all down.  How many can you have out at once?  I could kinda see there being some predator problems if you got too many of them out at once.

Also, based on your writing, I’m guessing you went to school at the same place as Bob’s cat from a couple letters ago?

 

Dear Garrosh,

I know things must be kind of tense between you and Saurfang right now, but I have to ask — has he had any funny noob moments since he started playing Earth Online?  I know when I finally convinced my girlfriend to give it a try, she had a lot of little moments, like not realizing your auto-attack toggles on so she kept spamming her 1 key.  Any good ones from Saurfang?

–Dedrin, Booty Bay

First of all, Dedrin, I call shenanigans.  Your girlfriend?  Everybody knows gamer nerds don’t have girlfriends, and girls don’t play Earth Online (you know, other than all the ones in my guild).  People make both those points all the time on the internet, so they must be true.  I don’t know who you think you’re fooling.

The funny thing about Saurfang is that even though he’s been flying along leveling like a motherfucker, he IS making all these noob mistakes…and yet stuff STILL keeps breaking his way like crazy.  It’s kind of incredible, really.  You know that expression about falling out of a tree and landing on your feet?  Well, Saurfang keeps falling out of trees, and then landing in another, cooler tree that sprouts up spontaneously right next to the first tree, only this new tree has cushioned recliner branches and grows strippers, thousand-dollar bills, and chilled kegs of beer.

Here, let me give you a for-instance.

Saurfang was doing a quest hunting bears and collecting stolen picnic baskets in one of the national park sub-zones.  So you know how your in-game map gets that blue blob on it to show where your quest mobs are?  Saurfang was looking at it and asked me if that’s where he needed to go for the bears and baskets.  I told him yes, and he said something like “For a moment, I thought it looked like water.”  Which, okay, that’s kind of cute in a noobish way, right?  Yeah, except when Saurfang actually GOT there?  The whole damn area got hit with a giant flood clear out of nowhere.  Which killed all the bears.  Which somehow he got quest credit for just by being there.  And all the picnic baskets came floating up to the surface, so he just swam a quick lap around and gathered them up and off he went on his way back to Park Ranger Smith.

The fuck?

 

That does it for this week, but Dedrin there gives me another idea.  For the next mailbag in a couple weeks, let’s hear from everybody about their Earth Online noob moments!  I bet there are some good stories out there about people coming face-to-face with their inner Dontrag and Utvoch.

Also don’t forget to check in tomorrow night — there’s lots going on and I’m planning to have some updates going up then.

More eye candy

Posted in General with tags , , , , , on August 25, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

The last few days (while I’ve been recovering from my latest round of WTFs) I’ve had Spazzle sorting through more of the photos that you all have been sending in, and incorporating them into the blog.  There’s still a ton left for him to work on, so you can expect more pics to break up the walls of text every so often.  Thanks as always to everyone who’s been sending in pictures to help pimp out the Command Board — and remember, there are still a ton of posts that either have no pictures at all, or could still benefit from some extra illustration (a caption-friendly pic for some of the transcripts would be especially cool, I think).  So, you have your homework — get out there!

In the meantime, here’s credit-where-it’s-due for the folks who’ve had their contributions added the last couple of days:

 

Angelya from Revive and Rejuvenate:

 

Regular reader and commenter Eravia:

 

Khizzara from Blog of the Treant:

 

Rioriel from Postcards From Azeroth:

 

Regular reader and commenter ZugZug:

 

And finally, a bunch more of my own that I’ve added to:

 

Finally, one last shout out to Rioriel for the header picture on this post, which totally doesn’t connect to the actual content of the post in any way, but I can’t really think of a way to use it anywhere else and it’s just too damn awesome not to put on the blog somewhere, because SRSLY LOOK AT THAT SHIT.

One last note — last call for your contributions to this coming Monday’s mailbag.  Remember, last time I asked all you Earth Online pet owners to write in with pictures of your in-game companion pets.  If you haven’t yet (AND I KNOW WHO YOU ARE, DON’T THINK I DON’T), hurry up and get to it!  And as always, general letters and questions for your Warchief are always welcome.  Send (d) all the above to garrosh1337@gmail.com – YOUR WARCHIEF DEMANDS IT!

Time isn’t after us

Posted in Transcripts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 24, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

{Previously on The Warchief’s Command Board…well, here.  Go read it yourself and get caught up.  We don’t have bandwidth for fucking previouslies.}

 

Garrosh looks around again.

GARROSH:  So…much less crowded all of a sudden…

LIADRIN:  Hmm.  Just us three at the Caverns of Time?

SORIDORMI:  <nods>  Your counterparts in this timeline had come here on…related but different business.

GARROSH:  Wait, our COUNTERPARTS?

SORIDORMI:  <nods>  For lack of a better word.

LIADRIN:  Oh, I think I’ve read about this… <looking around again>  I never thought I would experience it first-hand, though…

GARROSH:  Okay, so since everybody seems to understand this but me, could SOMEONE please explain what the fuck is going on?

SORIDORMI:  You’re caught in the backwash of Edwin’s temporal instability.

GARROSH:  Yeah, there’s not one single part of that sentence that was helpful.

SORIDORMI:  The flashes you’ve been experiencing have all corresponded to Faranell’s time shifts.  Every time he’s jumped to another point in his timeline, you have been shifting into…well, here.

LIADRIN:  An alternate timeline.

GARROSH:  So how come the Noz didn’t notice this?  And where is he, anyway?  How come he missed this kinda major part of what’s going on?

SORIDORMI:  Nozdormu can see the disturbances surrounding Edwin’s displacement in time easily enough, but the intermingling of realities occurring in the background is a bit…beyond his perception.

GARROSH:  But it’s not beyond yours?  No offense, but I thought the Noz was the one with the super-uber-heightened time perception.

SORIDORMI:  <sighs, then smiles>  Believe me, I’m not the first woman ever to let her husband go on thinking he was the smart one for the sake of his fragile ego.

Liadrin chuckles briefly.

MOKVAR:  So are we the only ones shifting into this timeline?  Why us?

SORIDORMI:  Yes and no.  You’re not the only ones toggling realities, but you are the only ones who have started to retain your memories of one timeline when you move to the other.  Those of you who were with Edwin in Southshore have been left with a sort of temporal residue that’s making it possible for you to bridge the gaps between realities.

GARROSH:  Okay…I think I’m starting to get this… So in that case…

Mokvar starts chuckling, quickly descending into raucous laughter.

Um, dude, what’s so funny?

MOKVAR:  <still laughing>  No, sorry, I’m just thinking…since this is affecting all of us from Southshore… I’m just imagining Utvoch trying to figure out what the hell is going on…

Mokvar falls into another fit of laughter.  Garrosh thinks for a moment, his eyes widening and a broad grin spreading across his face as he does, then starts laughing as well.

GARROSH:  Oh…oh man…that’s just…ha ha HAA!

LIADRIN:  Um, Garrosh?  Don’t you think we should…?

GARROSH:  <still laughing>  Oh SHIT!

MOKVAR:  <doubled over>  Hahaha…what?

GARROSH:  <starts to lean on Mokvar for support amid chortles>  Can you…can you imagine him trying to explain this shit to Dontrag?

MOKVAROHHHH!  HAHAHA!!

GARROSH:  Can’t you just see them?  “I think I was somewhere else,” “No you weren’t, you were right here,” “Yeah, I was here, but you weren’t,” “I was too here,” “No you weren’t, I was here only it was somewhere else here, and you were gone,” “Are you sure I wasn’t here?” “I think so.” “Huh, I wonder where I went…”

MOKVAR:  <gasping for breath and leaning back against Garrosh>  Stop!  You have to stop!  Hahahaha!

Liadrin turns back to Soridormi and rolls her eyes.

LIADRIN:  Boys will be boys.

Soridormi shrugs and nods.  Garrosh and Mokvar carry on laughing.

SORIDORMI:  Sadly, so will grown men.

LIADRIN:  At any rate… I understand that our connection to Edwin is allowing us to retain our awareness of this timeline, but I’m still not sure why these shifts are happening to us.

SORIDORMI:  It all comes back to Edwin, in more ways than one.

LIADRIN:  His own displacement in time, as Nozdormu was saying, obviously…

GARROSH:  Okay, okay, we’re done now.  <chortle>

SORIDORMI:  That was the start of it, yes.  And then, beyond that…this alternate reality was created when your Edwin caused…certain changes in the past.

LIADRIN:  Oh no.

GARROSH:  What did he do?  In his letter he said he remembered everything he did and said, and he would make sure he repeated it all.

SORIDORMI:  I have little doubt that he did.  And it strikes me as unlikely he even made these changes deliberately, or at least consciously.

GARROSH:  Then what did he change?

Soridormi holds out one hand.  A small, glowing, blue-tinted image of Patrick Faranell appears above her upturned palm.

IMAGE OF PATRICK:  Good news, everyone, I found it!  Just what the doctor ordered!

SORIDORMI:  I believe you’ve met Edwin’s brother, Professor Patrick Faranell.

LIADRIN:  Oh no… I think I know where this is going…

SORIDORMI:  In your original timeline, Patrick was killed during the Scourge invasion of Silvermoon.  In this reality, however, he never went to Silvermoon.  He survived.

GARROSH:  That…sounds like a pretty major crapping all over Edwin’s whole “I won’t change history” pledge.

SORIDORMI:  I doubt he did it deliberately.  Even if he remembered everything he ever said to his brother, repeated it all word for word…don’t underestimate the influence of a simple change of inflection, a tone of voice, a facial expression…  Even if he’d read all his lines, knowing what he knew, Edwin could easily have planted the doubts that would steer his brother away from harm.

GARROSH:  Seriously.  He couldn’t keep himself reined in, knowing how important it was?

SORIDORMI:  Garrosh, could you look a loved one in the face, knowing death was upon them, and be completely certain you wouldn’t let a hint of it into your voice?

GARROSH:  Okay…fair enough.  So, now we have one extra friendly dorky guy wandering around.  So what?

SORIDORMI:  Had he met his end in Silvermoon, Patrick was fated for…a different path.

Soridormi waves her hand, and the image of Patrick Faranell is replaced by a shimmering image of Professor Putricide.

IMAGE OF PUTRICIDE:  Good news, everyone!  I think I perfected a plague that will destroy all life on Azeroth!

GARROSH:  The hell…

SORIDORMI:  Patrick would be risen into undeath, unbeknownst to his brother in Dalaran.  The Lich King would take notice of his keen alchemical mind, and install him – in his new identity of “Professor Putricide” – as his chief alchemist and researcher in Icecrown Citadel.

GARROSH:  Okay…I’m really starting to worry about why this becomes important…

LIADRIN:  Dominoes…

SORIDORMI:  With no Putricide in existence, Arthas’ attention in those early days would turn in a different direction…

Soridormi waves her hand again.  The image of Professor Putricide flickers out and is replaced by the likeness of Grand Apothecary Putress.

IMAGE OF PUTRESS:  Did you think we had forgotten?  Did you think we had forgiven?

SORIDORMI:  I believe you are both familiar with the work of Grand Apothecary Putress, previously of Sylvanas’ Royal Apothecary Society.

LIADRIN:  By the Light…

SORIDORMI:  The Lich King chose Putress for the role that would have gone to Putricide – replacing one master alchemist with another, albeit perhaps a more ruthless one.

GARROSH:  So, what, did Putress come up with some invention for Arthas, or…?

LIADRIN:  Garroh, no… Think…the Wrathgate

GARROSH:  Oh… OH…

MOKVAR:  Oh shit…

SORIDORMI:  <nodding>  With Putress in Icecrown Citadel rather than the Undercity, there was no coup against Sylvanas.  There was no betrayal at the Battle of the Wrathgate.  Dranosh Saurfang survived, as did Bolvar Fordragon.  While the Lich King survived to fight another day, driven back into his fortress, the assault on the Wrathgate was regarded as a great victory – for Alliance and Horde alike.  Bolvar would use that success, along with his newfound friendship with Saurfang the Younger, to persuade Varian Wrynn to reconsider his stance on relations with the Horde.

Soridormi waves her hand again.  Above her upturned palm, a glowing likeness appears of Thrall and Varian Wrynn shaking hands.

The Alliance and Horde would sign the Dalaran Accords some weeks later.  The war between Alliance and Horde was ended.

GARROSH:  <sneers at the image>  Fuck you, Varian.

MOKVAR:  You know that’s not really him, right?

LIADRIN:  Peace between the Horde and the Alliance… All those lives spared at the Wrathgate… And…

Liadrin looks down at the Ashbringer in her hands.

SORIDORMI:  A number of other rather important events have…played out differently.

GARROSH:  Like the fact that with Dranosh still alive, when it came time for Thrall to name an acting Warchief…

Soridormi nods.

And then… Cairne… By the spirits…when Hamuul’s druids were attacked by the Twilight’s Hammer…

MOKVAR:  Cairne wasn’t as quick to think Dranosh was responsible, like he was with you?  So that means…

GARROSH:  There was never a duel.  Cairne…never died.  I never…  He never died.

MOKVAR:  This is all…I don’t even know what to call it.  But, crazy as it all is…why is this timeline mixing with ours at all?

LIADRIN:  Edwin.  It’s all about Edwin…

SORIDORMI:  <nods>  These divergent timelines aren’t uncommon.  There are countless events in your history that have produced alternate realities.  But what’s different here is your friend.  The split in realities was caused by Edwin averting his brother’s death.  But it’s also Edwin who’s become unstuck in time.  He’s spawned an entire universe in which he does not belong; he’s out of time, and time itself wants him back.  It’s pulling him back and forth, and pulling the other reality into ours in the process.  Edwin has become a shatter point in time, and the walls between realities are cracking around him.  Eventually, the other timeline – the one we’re in now – will bleed through into ours.

LIADRIN:  He’ll never even realize any of this is happening, will he?  It’ll just happen while he’s off at other points in time.

SORIDORMI:  Difficult to say.  Though it wouldn’t surprise me if the timelines eventually converge to the point that he begins to remain here with you.

MOKVAR:  Still trying to wrap my head around this…

SORIDORMI:  It is much to absorb, I know.

MOKVAR:  But…what do we do now?

SORIDORMI:  Reality will continue to crack around Edwin until the timelines converge and this one, essentially, replaces ours, unless we can return both Edwins to where they belong and restore the original timeline.

LIADRIN:  I suspect that won’t be quite as simple as running back through the portal to old Hillsbrad.

SORIDORMI:  <shakes her head>  Crossing your own timelines will be a dangerous proposition, and one that will take a tremendous focusing of magic.  There’s much we’ll need to do here to prepare, and even then, there’s the small matter of getting this Edwin here at a point when he isn’t…elsewhere.  Not to mention convincing him of the necessity of going back.

LIADRIN:  I suppose we’ll just need to do what we can we can can erif we eht can do ma can i tub can what em semusnoc what taht erif a si ti regit eht ma i tub em hold selgnam taht regit a si ti revir eht the ma i tub gnola em speews taht line revir a si emit edam ma i we hcihw fo we ecnatsbus what we eht what si what emit what what we what we can to get ready.

NOZDORMU:  Indeed.  Chromormu, go speak with Erozion about a possible return incursion to Hillsbrad.

CHROMIE:  Sure thing, captain.

Chromie teleports out.  Garrosh, Liadrin, and Mokvar exchange uneasy looks both at each other and at Faranell – who likewise looks around uncomfortably.  Soridormi, standing half a step behind Nozdormu, watches them and raises a single finger to her lips.

TIRION:  Dr. Faranell?  Are you all right?  You seem out of sorts suddenly.

FARANELL:  Yeah…um…

EITRIGG:  It happened again, didn’t it?

NOZDORMU:  <narrows his eyes, looking at Faranell grimly>  Yes.  It would appear so.

Faranell nods and sighs.

LIADRIN:  Where were you this time, Edwin?

FARANELL:  It was…a large, sprawling city, built into the mountains of a bright, orange-stoned desert.  There were…orcs and trolls everywhere… Was… It was Orgrimmar, wasn’t it?

MOKVAR:  Sounds like it.

GARROSH:  Well, Doc, I don’t know if you were just in your past, but Orgrimmar is definitely in your future.  You’re coming back with us, where we can watch out for you while we figure this thing out.

TIRION:  A wise choice, mostly likely, my good Warchief.  Upon our return to Hearthglen, I will have Daria make arrangements with the good doctor’s family to have whatever effects he might require transported to Orgrimmar.

GARROSH:  Good deal.  Don’t…um…don’t feel like you need to deliver them personally.  Some plain ol’ couriers will do fine.

TIRION:  If…you say so, Warchief…

NOZDORMU:  In the meantime, I will see about making what preparations we can here.

GARROSH:  Yeah.  Thanks, Noz.

Nozdormu nods solemnly and walks off.

SORIDORMI:  I should go assist Nozdormu.  <looks slowly from Garrosh to Liadrin to Mokvar>  I suspect I will see you all again, in due time.

 

We’re back in Orgrimmar now with Faranell.  I’m going to have him assigned quarters somewhere he can be comfortable — well, as comfortable as a human can be in a city full of orcs — and we can keep an eye on him at all times.  Not sure where we go from here, but I want him close just in case.  Right now I’ve got a lot to think about…

More soon.

 

“Daria’s Pro Tip for Dealing with Tirion #8: Do not wear black mageweave leggings. Ever. Ever.”

Time isn’t holding us

Posted in Transcripts with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 23, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

After my latest kablooey-switcheroo, and finding out Mokvar’s been experiencing the same thing, I contacted Tirion to arrange for us to bring Faranell with us to the Caverns of Time.  I was originally planning to have someone go pick up Edwin in Hearthglen and bring him back to Orgrimmar, but as it turns out, Tirion is concerned enough about Edwin that he insisted on escorting him to the Caverns of Time himself.  Liadrin’s offered to come as well, so she’s going to meet them in Hearthglen before heading to Tanaris.

That works out for another reason: From talking to Liadrin, I found out that she’s also been experiencing these flashes, at least the last couple days.  Same thing Mokvar and I have had happening – clear out of the blue, finding ourselves in a different situation with different people doing different things than we’d been doing the minute before.  I asked around Orgrimmar, but nobody else seems to know what I’m talking about – not Eitrigg, not Nazgrim, not Spazzle, not anybody.  Eitrigg, though…well, when he heard Tirion was coming to meet us at the Caverns of Time, he just up and invited himself along.  So yay, fun times.

We arrived earlier today, and no surprise, the conversation was eventful.

 

SORIDORMI:  Greetings once again, Warchief.

GARROSH:  Sori.  You already know Mokvar here.

Soridormi nods politely to Mokvar.

MOKVAR:  Ma’am.

GARROSH:  And this is Eitrigg, one of my main advisors.  Eitrigg, let me introduce Soridormi, Prime Consort of Nozdormu.

EITRIGG:  Lady Soridormi.

SORIDORMI:  Of course.  I haven’t met you yet.  Not at all.

EITRIGG:  Um…begging your pardon, m’lady?

GARROSH:  Just let it slide, Eitrigg.

MOKVAR:  Uh oh.  Fog alert.

GARROSH:  Try not to let yourself get all bent out of shape when they say cryptic stuff like that.  They do it all the ffrreeaakkiinngg ttiimmee aaarrrooouuunnnddd hhheeerrreee, aaannnddd…oooohhhh, hhhheeeerrrreeee wwwweeee ggggoooo.

EITRIGG:  Iiiissss aaaannnnyyyyoooonnnneeee eeeellllsssseeee nnnnoooottttiiiicccciiiinnnngggg…?

MOKVAR:  Yyyyyoooouuuu ggggeeeetttt uuuusssseeeedddd ttttoooo iiiitttt.

The surrounding smoke thickens, and then, in slow motion, Nozdormu enters comes pimping in.

NOZDORMU:  Warchief.

GARROSH:  Noz.

EITRIGG:  Does…he always do that when he arrives?

MOKVAR:  Every.  Single.  Time.

NOZDORMU:  I would say I hope you are all well, Garrosh, but based on your message, I know that’s not the case.

GARROSH:  You could say that.

MOKVAR:  Do you have any ideas about what this could be?

NOZDORMU:  I have my suspicions.  But I cannot be certain until…ah, here they come now.

Tirion Fordring enters, accompanying his aide Daria L’Rayne, Lady Liadrin, and, lingering behind them, Edwin Faranell.

GARROSH:  Tirion, Liadrin.

MOKVAR:  Hey Edwin.

TIRION:  Greetings, gentlemen.  And of course, Lady Soridormi.  And the Timeless One, a great pleasure it is finally to make your acquaintance – truly an honor it is to finally stand in the presence of the being who serves our world as the caretaker of time itself.

NOZDORMU:  Yes, I’d heard about you being the one responsible for wasting so very much of it.

TIRION:  Timeless One?

NOZDORMU:  Never mind.

EITRIGG:  Tirion!

TIRION:  Ah, Eitrigg, my friend!  A pleasure and an honor it is to finally stand face to face with you once again!  Too much time, far too many years have elapsed since last we stood in each other’s company.

EITRIGG:  It’s good to see you again, my friend.

TIRION:  A haggard sight, no doubt, for long-absent eyes in my case, noble orc.  The intervening years have not, I suspect, been kind, and I fear the pains of loss and war weigh heavily on my face.  But not without the accompanying relief of triumph and great hope, I can assure you!

Nozdormu rolls his eyes and waves one hand in Tirion’s direction.

And you, noble Eitrigg!  The years, I must say, have been quite kind.  Perhaps the stray wht hr, nd line on yr face – brght on, I cn nly hope by lghtr nd bmng smls, rthr thn strsss nd nxts A hrbngr I wld hp ny trst f a grt lnglfyttcmnflldwthjynd cntntmntagrtmsrfwichIcnnlyhpeImyytstndnrtwtnssfrsthnd.

NOZDORMU:  Well, that was slightly less painful.

MOKVAR:  Did you just fast-forward him?

GARROSH:  Dude, is there any way I could get like a bottle of whatever that shit was?  I will seriously pay you whatever you want to charge for it.

NOZDORMU:  A bottle of dominion over time?  Sorry, not really an option.

GARROSH:  Dammit.

MOKVAR:  Nice try, boss.

GARROSH:  I would fucking POUR that shit on Dontrag and Utvoch.

TIRION:  Well now, ladies and gentlemen…

GARROSH:  Oh no, here he goes.  Queue it up again, Noz.

TIRION:  …I suppose it is time we addressed the man of the hour, as it were.

Tirion gestures back toward Faranell, who steps up past Liadrin and Daria.  Nozdormu stares at Faranell for a long moment with an increasingly worried look.

NODORMU:  Oh…oh, that’s not good…

GARROSH:  Oh boy…

FARANELL:  What’s wrong?

NOZDORMU:  You are.  Everything about you…you’re… I’m sorry, my friend, but you’re just wrong.  You shouldn’t be.

FARANELL:  Um, okay…

LIADRIN:  I’d worried that it might be this bad…

GARROSH:  Okay, so now that we’ve made him feel like crap, can we maybe find out what’s going on and what we can do about it?

NOZDORMU:  He doesn’t belong here, in the simplest possible terms.

FARANELL:  Because I’m not from this time…

GARROSH:  But when we went back to old Hillsbrad, we weren’t from THAT time either, and WE didn’t start going all wonky.

SORIDORMI:  When you travel through the time portals here, you do so under the protection of the Bronze Flight.  The enchantments of our portals shield you from any ill effects from temporal displacement.

LIADRIN:  So Edwin is unstable now because he came through to a different time without being insulated?

NOZDORMU:  It’s not so simple with him.

GARROSH:  That was simple?

MOKVAR:  I think it’s about to get worse.

NOZDORMU:  It’s not merely that Dr. Faranell isn’t supposed to be here in this time.  He’s not meant to be anywhere, in any time.  This Faranell, as he has been since he was brought to our time, should not exist.  He’s been cut off from his own future, and time itself is reacting against it.

LIADRIN:  So he’s essentially been pulled out of his own timeline, and now it’s causing him to rubber-band back to random points in that timeline?

NOZDORMU:  Unstuck in time, yes.

FARANELL:  So when I’ve flashed into events I don’t remember, it’s because those events were part of…well, the other me’s past rather than mine.

LIADRIN:  They were the past you were supposed to have.

NOZDORMU:  Or, in some cases, the future meant for you.

GARROSH:  Wait, you mean a possible future, right?  Isn’t it still in flux or something depending on what we do in the present?

NOZDORMU:  Warchief, what did you do yesterday?

GARROSH:  I…well, I went over some tactical plans with Nazgrim and Drok, took Mortimer for a ride around Durotar…um…played some Earth Online…

NOZDORMU:  Was it pre-ordained that you do those things, do you suppose, or did you choose to do them?

GARROSH:  Well, I guess I chose to…right?

NOZDORMU:  And the fact that you can look back at them now doesn’t make them any less your decision at the time?

LIADRIN:  I think I see where you’re going with this…

GARROSH:  I…well, no.

NOZDORMU:  The future is already written, Warchief.  For you, me, everyone.  We still write that destiny ourselves.  But we already have written it.  We simply must live it one page at a time.

LIADRIN:  And now Edwin is flipping back and forth in the book.

GARROSH:  Okay, so that sort of explains why Doc is skipping around his timeline.  I guess.  What about what’s been happening with me and Mokvar and Liadrin?

NOZDORMU:  That…I’m not as sure of.

LIADRIN:  It has to be connected to what’s happening to Edwin.

NOZDORMU:  There’s no doubt of that, certainly.  Let me check something.  Chromormu!

Chromie teleports in next to Nozdormu.

CHROMIE:  Hey, gramps, what’s—  <notices Faranell>  HOLY SHIT, what happened to HIM?!

FARANELL:  Cut off from my own future.

LIADRIN:  Unstuck in time.

MOKVAR:  I’ve got the notes if you want to catch up real quick.

CHROMIE:  Wowie wow, you’re a big ol’ timey-whimey mess!

FARANELL:  We’re aware, yes.

SORIDORMI:  Chromie, when the good doctor became displaced in time, he appears to have to have have dnuob to nori have he dna have elbisreverri si have appears ti esuaceb appears gniyfirret si ti laernu si ti esuaceb gniyfirret hold ton si ynitsed ruo snoitalosnoc the terces era dna noitarepsed fo stca eb ot line raeppa esrevinu lacimonortsa eht yned ot fles eht some yned ot some noisseccus had some laropmet had yned had ot had had some had some residual effect on…

Soridormi pauses a moment and looks around.  Garrosh, Liadrin, and Mokvar look around as well, a bit disoriented, finding that everyone save themselves and Soridormi has disappeared.

Ah.  There we are, finally.  I was hoping to have a window while you were here.

Garrosh, Liadrin, and Mokvar exchange one more round of looks, then turn back to Soridormi.

Now then, why don’t we get down to business.

 

{TO BE CONTINUED…}

Lines of inquiry

Posted in Transcripts with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

A few days ago, Saurfang had sent a courier to me with kind of an irritated letter asking to see me.  He had some objections to certain operations going on in Northrend, so I agreed to set aside some time today for him to come down and discuss things in person.

It wasn’t exactly a pleasant meeting.

You’re up, Mokvar.

 

Saurfang enters, accompanied by two Kor’kron guards who aren’t nearly as badass as him.

GARROSH:  Morning, Saurfang.

NAZGRIM:  Good morning, High Overlord.

SAURFANG:  Morning it is, gentlemen, but I’m hardly convinced it is a good one.

GARROSH:  Oh great.  It’s that bad, huh?

SAURFANG:  Indeed, Warchief.

GARROSH:  Okay, well, let’s get it out in the open, then.  What’s the problem, Saurfang?

SAURFANG:  Let me speak plainly, Warchief.  Is it your intention to replace me as High Overlord of the Kor’kron Guard?

GARROSH:  What?  No.  Why would I want to do that?  You built those troops up from ground level yourself.

SAURFANG:  <nodding grimly>  Have I, then, been unknowingly relieved of duty as commanding officer of our Northrend forces?

GARROSH:  Oh, wait.  I think I see where this is going.

SAURFANG:  Have I been relieved, Warchief?

GARROSH:  Saurfang, if I ever relieve you of duty, you’ll know from the way I pick you up and throw you from a very great height.

MOKVAR:  Like to see you try that…

GARROSH:  Not the time, Mokvar.

SAURFANG:  In that case, Warchief, I am left to assume that I remain in command of our Northrend operations.

GARROSH:  <sighs>  Yes, Saurfang, you’re still in command.

SAURFANG:  And in that case, Warchief, I would be most interested in hearing the explanation for a team of Horde operatives arriving at Warsong Hold claiming to be undertaking a mission, the details of which they were not at liberty to divulge to the command officer under whose jurisdiction they were operating.

NAZGRIM:  With all due respect, High Overlord, the men in question are operating under the—

SAURFANG:  If I require your thoughts on this matter, General, you may rest assured that I will instruct you to share them.

MOKVAR:  Oh man, shit just got real…

GARROSH:  Mokvar!

MOKVAR:  Sorry, boss.

GARROSH:  Here’s the thing, Saurfang.

SAURFANG:  Indeed, Warchief, by all means do elucidate me on the thing.

GARROSH:  <glares briefly>  The men who arrived at Warsong Hold are working on a mission under the supervision of General Nazgrim here, and under my direct sanctions.  And since they’re working under my orders, and aren’t Kor’kron operatives, no, they are NOT under your jurisdiction.

SAURFANG:  I see.  And is there a reason, then, why I am not authorized even to know about this very important mission?

GARROSH:  Look, I know you don’t like being kept in kept in in nway kept gnittolbyks in being desiop in eno ni in dont meht nopu dont nwod thgindim fo egakcerw eht lruh ot tub egakcerw shatter otni thgindim lruh ot ton ti htiw thgindim point gniggard tub thgindim drawot ton deraor emit fo ecarllim tsav eht in moor tilpmal in teiuq kept in eht kept edistuo kept elihw kept kept in kept in the dark, Saurfang.

DRANOSH

Is was a necessary – wait, did you just call me “Saurfang”?  Since when do you call me “Saurfang”?  Saurfang is my dad.

GARROSH

Wait, wasn’t I just…?  Oh.  Right…  Don’t mind me.  You’re looking more and more like him all the time.

DRANOSH

Don’t even joke about that.

GARROSH

Anyway, though, you were saying?

DRANOSH

I know you don’t like being kept in the dark, Garrosh, but we didn’t want word leaking out about what we’d uncovered.

GARROSH

Which would be…?

NAZGRIM

On our last sweep around the islands just south of the Maelstrom, we found a…well, a survivor, sir.

VOL’JIN

By da spirits, ya mean ya—

DRANOSH

No, not him, Vol’jin.  Unfortunately.

NAZGRIM

He’s…humanoid.  That’s pretty much all we can say.  Not any species I’ve ever seen before.  Everything he had to say on his own just came out as a bunch of rubbish, and I wanted to bring him back here where we could all hear it before I tried to question him any further.

GARROSH

Is there anything particularly suspicious about him that we’re questioning him…

[Garrosh trails off and bristles as he looks across the room and notices – then stares at – MAGATHA GRIMTOTEM.]

VOL’JIN

Garrosh?

GARROSH

What…is she doing here?

MAGATHA

High Overlord?  Why would I not be here?  The Warchief has always welcomed my counsel on internal Horde matters…

GARROSH

[Bristles for another moment, then shakes his head vigorously.]

Right.  Never mind.  I’m just… My head’s just somewhere else.

MOKVAR

Somewhere…

DRANOSH

Are you going to be okay for this?  If you need a head shrinker, I’m sure Vol’jin could arrange—

GARROSH

I’ll be fine.

NAZGRIM

Shall we bring him in, then?

DRANOSH

We may as well.

[Nazgrim signals to a guard, who steps into an adjoining room.  A moment later, two guards enter with a humanoid – smaller in stature than an orc and similar in features to a monkey.  The guards flank him on each side and hold his arms loosely while leading him in.  His head hangs low.]

NAZGRIM

He calls himself “Zhi-Zhi.”  He says he was an initiate at some sort of monastery in a place called the Jade Forest before the Rupturing.  Then the land he comes from was devastated by the resulting earthquakes and tidal waves, and wound up being washed onto the island where we found him.  Or so he says, from what I could gather.

[The guards lead ZHI-ZHI into the room.  When they stop moving, Zhi-Zhi looks up and sees Garrosh.  Zhi-Zhi’s eyes widen with a look of surprise.]

ZHI-ZHI

[Stares wide-eyed at Garrosh, reaching with one hand to point at him.]

Ohh…

[Suddenly pulls his hand back and shakes his head.]

Not the one.

GARROSH

The hell?

VOL’JIN

[Eyes narrowing.]

Not da one what, mon?

ZHI-ZHI

[Shakes his head, then points to Garrosh again with a chuckle.]

No, no, not the one.

GARROSH

[Striding up to Zhi-Zhi.]

Not the one WHAT?

NAZGRIM

That’s really just a small sampling of the kind of lunacy he’s been spouting nonstop since we found him.

GARROSH

Not WHAT one?

ZHI-ZHI

Not the one!

GARROSH

[Rearing back and striking Zhi-Zhi with each word.]

What.  Does.  That.  MEAN?

ZHI-ZHI

AAH!  Alright, enough, enough!  STOP HITTING ZHI-ZHI!

DRANOSH

Garrosh, enough.

GARROSH

I’ll start hitting a whole lot harder if you don’t start talking some sense.

DRANOSH

Zhi-Zhi.

[Zhi-Zhi looks past Garrosh to Dranosh.]

My name is Dranosh.

VOL’JIN

It be meanin’ “Heart of Draenor” in—

DRANOSH

Don’t start, Vol’jin.

VOL’JIN

Sorry, mon.

DRANOSH

[Turns his attention back to Zhi-Zhi.]

I’m the Warchief – the leader – of a people called the Horde.  As long as you’re here, you’re under our protection and safe.  We want to help you, but first you have to help us understand.

[Zhi-Zhi slowly nods.]

This is Garrosh.  You said he’s…“not the one”?  Did you think you recognized him from somewhere?

ZHI-ZHI

Yes.  No.  Yes.  Zhi-Zhi… Zhi-Zhi not sure.

DRANOSH

Where did you think you’d recognized him from?

ZHI-ZHI

When Zhi-Zhi first come to Tian, Elder Cloudfall show Zhi-Zhi the place.  Show Zhi-Zhi the visions.  Zhi-Zhi saw…saw the cracks, looked into the cracks, saw more cracks, more, growing, everywhere cracks, cracks, cracking… Zhi-Zhi tried to warn, but oh, no, nobody listen to poor Zhi-Zhi…

VOL’JIN

Hmm…visions, eh, mon?

GARROSH

Listen, you blathering idiot, what does any of that even mean, and what could it POSSIBLY have to do with do with with tsap do flah with have rehto with eht gnitteg with to fo syaw to gnitnevni ti fo flah tneps eh tey emit saw derrohba shatter dna deraef eh htaed eht dna point mih neewteb doots taht lla emit saw dah nam taht lla dias to dah elcnu to sih have to woh have gnirebmemer have gnikniht have have to have to do with me?

Garrosh does a double take, shaking his head.

SAURFANG:  What does it not have to do with you, Garrosh?  The secrets, the infighting, the distrust against supposed countrymen – I have seen it before, and I will not stand idly by and let it take root without even the aid of demon blood.

GARROSH:  Saurfang, we’re talking about one single mission which, believe me, has more than enough reason for maximum security.

SAURFANG:  And a disregard for the chain of command.

GARROSH:  Legionnaire Nazgrim doesn’t…wait, Legionnaire?  No, General Nazgrim…

MOKVAR:  <muttering>  Not the one…

Garrosh looks at Mokvar in surprise for a moment, then collects himself.

GARROSH:  General Nazgrim is running the operation, and he doesn’t answer to you.

SAURFANG:  Indeed he does not, it would seem.  And while the good Legionnaire was recently promoted to General, unless he has also received further clandestine promotions all way past High Overlord—

GARROSH:  He doesn’t answer to YOU because he answers to ME.  Just like these men don’t answer to you because THEY answer to ME.  And I am beginning to TIRE of your coming down here to argue jurisdiction and technicalities when it should be abundantly clear EVERYTHING is being done under MY AUTHORITY.

SAURFANG:  And by exactly what authority are you holding your other leaders at arm’s length?

GARROSH:  I AM YOUR WARCHIEF, SAURFANG!

SAURFANGTHRALL is my Warchief!  And you, boy, are warming his seat.

Garrosh glares at Saurfang for a moment.

MOKVAR:  Oh shit.

Mokvar and Nazgrim both take a few steps back.

GARROSH:  So now it comes out.

SAURFANG:  I may have been the first to have said it, Warchief, but I assure you I am far from the first to have thought it.

GARROSH:  Saurfang…you’ve been a hero of our people for many years, and because of that I’m going let this one time pass.  If you were any other man, I would have killed you right here and now.

SAURFANG:  You would have tried.

Mokvar and Nazgrim take a few more steps back.

GARROSH:  Go back to your station, old man.

SAURFANG:  Indeed, Warchief.  I will retire to Northrend.  And as I am no longer privy to all that goes on there, I will trust that there is nothing being done that would bring dishonor to our people.  And should I learn that that trust has been misplaced…well…as you say, Warchief, we each have but a single free pass, as the saying goes.

Saurfang turns and leaves.  Garrosh lets out a frustrated sigh, then eyes Mokvar and Nazgrim.

GARROSH:  What are you staring at?  We have work to do.

 

So…obviously a lot going on.  But honestly I’m in no mood to talk about the Saurfang thing right now.

Besides that, though…I remember.  I remember the whole thing now, when I…well…flashed to wherever I was, with Dranosh and that monkey guy and holy fuck Magatha are you fucking kidding me.  I really remember it – not all fuzzy and blurry and dream-like.  What’s more, I just got to talking with Mokvar.  He remembers being there too.  Apparently he’s been experiencing the same thing the last couple days.  We compared notes a little as far as what we experienced, and it sounds eerily similar to those flashbacks that Faranell was complaining about when we went to see him in Hearthglen.

All of us having these flashes is way too big a coincidence.  It all started when we brought Faranell back from the past, so I’m going to arrange to pick Faranell up from Tirion, and then have all of us head down to the Caverns of Time.  I think it’s time we went over this with Nozdormu.

Coming Soon: Live Blogiversarying (Yes, That’s a Word, Dammit)

Posted in Words from Behind the Curtain with tags , , on August 20, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

Hi again, everyone.  This is Averry, breaking character to make a quick announcement.

The one other time I’d stepped out from behind the Garrosh façade, I’d said I wouldn’t be doing it again, and I labored for a while trying to come up with an in-character way to make this announcement.  Then my inner Garrosh kicked in and I said, “Eh, fuck it.”  It’s just easier to do it this way, so here I am again.

As some of you long-time readers may realize, we’re coming up on the one-year anniversary of the Warchief’s Command Board.  Garrosh made his inaugural post on August 28, 2011.  (You better believe I just shamelessly linked back to it!  Hey, if you’re a new reader, consider that your invitation to hop into the Way-Back Machine and get all caught up.  And if you’ve been reading from the start…well…go back and read it all again!  I bet it rewards multiple readings.  You know, kind of like a Faulkner novel.  Only nowhere near as good.  Like even remotely.)

I wanted to do something to commemorate the blogiversary, and an idea finally came to me, courtesy of some serendipitous timing.  As it happens, August 28 also marks the release date of Jaina Proudmoore: Tides of War, Christie Golden’s new WoW novel that sets the stage for Mists of Pandaria.

So here’s my hair-brained scheme.  Next Tuesday, August 28, I’m going to be running out in the morning to pick up the novel.  Then I’ll be spending the day reading.  And then, that night, I’ll be LIVE BLOGGING a new installment of the Command Board that will tie into the events of the novel somehow.  I’ve live blogged here once before, and this will work basically the same way: I’ll post an initial setup, then update every few minutes so that the story “unfolds” before your very eyes as you refresh the page.

What will the live-blogging episode be about?  How will it tie into the book?  I have no idea!  I won’t know that until I actually read the book, so I won’t even be in a position to start putting any ideas together until that day.  All I know is that I’ll be writing something that night, and it’ll have something to do with the events of Tides of War.  Obviously, this is a bit of a gamble, and there’s a more-than-trivial chance that I’ll wind up embarrassing myself.  But really, isn’t the chance to watch Averry make himself look like a jackass one of those little pleasures that makes life worth living?

So, consider this your official invitation to attend the debacle in progress – the LIVE BLOG begins at 8:00 PM Eastern time on TUESDAY, AUGUST 28.  Come by and watch me fall flat on my face!

Thank you to everyone for reading, following, commenting, and interacting with the Warchief here.  I’ll respond to comments on this post (as well as on the About page) as myself, and then otherwise retreat behind my somewhat more temperamental alter ego.

Thanks as always,

Averry
(and Sawyer)

Patch notes

Posted in General with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2012 by Garrosh Hellscream

So while I try to come down from the frantic WTFs of what just happened

Those of you who’ve been following my gaming habits know that Earth Online has been working on a new expansion called Land Down Under for over a year now.  It’s due to come out in a few weeks, and it’s going to be the first expansion since I’ve been playing, so that should be cool.  I haven’t been playing on the Beta, but Spazzle has, so between watching over his shoulder a few times, and watching the announcements about what’s happening, I’ve been able to keep up on a little bit of what’s coming.

So, for those fellow gamers out there, here are a few notes and comments on what’s in store for us…

 

  • They’re raising the level cap from 50 to 60.  There’s been talk that they’re going to adjust the 1-50 leveling to make it go faster as a result, which is probably a good idea, because just think what that would be like for a new character – can you imagine having to grind out 60 levels right out of the gate?

 

  • They’re adding a bunch of new mounts, but my absolute favorite one?  There’s this animal called a kangaroo.  It’s kind of like…um…okay, you know what, there actually isn’t any animal in the real world that I can compare this thing to.  All I can really say is, imagine what kind of animal a murloc would have to have fucked to produce the first gorloc.  Kind of like that.  Anyway, the thing about this kangaroo is  that it has this pouch on its belly, which supposedly it uses to carry its young around.  (Side note: I don’t know how the devs keep coming up with shit like this.  I mean really.  Some hella good felweed, I guess.)  So here’s the thing.  When you ride this kangaroo, you don’t sit on its back or something normal like that – you ride around in the damn thing’s pouch!  Oh and also, did I mention that rather than running, these things fucking HOP?  How much cartoonish awesome is that, seriously?

 

  • They’re adding in this new feature where you can put yourself into a group finder, which will automatically assemble a group of players for raids.  And I know exactly what you’re thinking, because I thought the same thing too: You mean I can sign up to join 19 total strangers chosen at random in an anonymous, consequence-free environment for a group activity that hinges on coordination, communication, and precise execution?  OMG FINALLY, WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG?  I’ll tell you, I like raiding, but I don’t know if I’m going to try this feature out, because honestly, I feel the urge to kill everyone around me enough as it is, I don’t know how much more I want to put my temper to the test.

 

  • File this one under Long Long LONG Overdue: They’re finally smartening up and adding a TON of airports to most of the zones.  No more of this crap where there’s only one airport per zone, so you land in Chicago and then you’re stuck running around on your mount for 20 minutes because you’re still working on that quest chain in Wisconsin.  What’s more, they’re adding this extra feature called “In-Flight Movie” – basically if you’re on one of the longer flights, you can choose from a list of in-game cinematics and popular machinima, and watch them while you’re in flight.  They’re even organized by how closely the running time matches your flight time.  Pretty awesome, huh?

    Of course, as soon as word got out about the plan to add the new airports, all the permanently bitter self-professed hardcore players came out of the woodwork on the forums to gripe and complain, because “OMG this isn’t Earth Online, it’s Casuals Online now” and they’re ruining the game by dumbing it down, because obviously it completely removes any concept of challenge or skill from the game if you make ANY SINGLE THING IN IT even 5% more convenient, and OMG nerdrage because CASUALS.  To which, honest to fucking hell, dickweeds, SHUT THE FUCK UP.  I swear I will never understand why some of these people seem to sink so damn much of their time into something that obviously just makes them angry.  I mean, okay, I spend a shit-ton of time on things that usually make ME angry, but dude, it’s my fucking JOB.  I spend enough time in real life dealing with shit that pisses me off, I don’t need to pay a monthly subscription fee for more.  I swear some gamers would complain about a blowjob.

 

  • They’re going to head into this expansion by having a couple major world events to set up the big contest to determine the faction leader in November (which, frankly, they’ve already been playing it up so much that I really just want the damn thing settled so we can stop hearing about it).  Basically they’re setting aside a week each for two “party convention” events, which you can participate in to align yourself with either of the two main candidates for faction leader, do quests for them, and get some “campaign” vanity items…which frankly look kind of shitty and tacky to me.  For starters, could they seriously not come up with ANYTHING better for the party symbols?  A talbuk and an elekk?  Really?  Those are the most impressive things you could think of?  I mean, those would be fine if your goal is to make your candidates into, like, the final targets of a Nesingwary hunting expedition, but otherwise, really?

    Anyway, these two events are going to lead into the expansion, and then in November they’ll finally settle things as far as who the leader’s going to be.  I guess it’s going to be this game-wide process to decide – they’re going to have daily quests, resource gathering, mini-boss encounters, tons of other stuff, and then they’re going to total it all up across all the servers.  So then, when the “Election Day” event kicks in, whoever the players end up putting ahead wins and becomes faction leader in the next patch.  Unless it’s the guy who’s already faction leader.  Then he just STAYS faction leader.

    A bunch of people have been blogging about how impressive this is, that the devs are letting the players determine who the leader is going to be.  Their point seems to be that by doing this, the devs are giving up a lot of control over what’s going to happen with the lore, so they either have to have two sets of outcomes ready to go, or improvise on the fly depending on who wins.  Personally, I think that’s putty WAY too much weight on the outcome of the event.  If you ask me, whatever’s going to happen in the lore and in the game world is going to happen, it’s already been worked out, and the only thing the devs are going to have to do based on the election is tweak a few details to account for how we got from A to B.  But we’re going from A to B.  Whoever wins, we’re heading for B.  Seriously, guys, don’t kid yourselves into thinking one option or another is going to magically portal us to H or Q or motherfucking X.

 

So that’s what we’re looking at so far.  Quick note before I forget, by the way – don’t forget to write in for next week’s mailbag with pictures of your own Earth Online pets like we had from me and Shara last time around.  I’ve already gotten a few letters, and it would definitely be cool to see everybody’s collection.  Send those letters and pictures to me at garrosh1337@gmail.com.

Anyway, we’ll see how everything plays out.  I know Spazzle’s going to pre-download LDU so he can start playing the minute the new content goes live, and it wouldn’t surprise me if Lorthemar does the same, considering how much time he seems to spend online.  Whoever he is in the first place.  Meanwhile, I’d kind of assumed that Saurfang would be a long way from level cap still when LDU drops, but I might turn out to be wrong (MARK YOUR CALENDARS, it doesn’t happen often).  He’s already up to like level 30, which is pretty damn amazing considering he’s totally new to all of this.  Even more amazing when you factor in the fact that I almost never see him online.  I’ll go a few days without seeing him, then he’ll finally log on, and it’s like, dude, you gained like eight levels since last time I saw you, how the hell did THAT happen?  Dude just FLEW through those level, like stuff is just falling over dead for him as soon as he walks into the room.

Let’s hope that doesn’t carry over into real life.  I’ve got a face-to-face with him soon, and personally I’d rather not wind up dead.  More updates soon after that.

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