Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Discuss the World of Warcraft campaign setting, as it relates to pen & paper RPGs, here.
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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Tue Nov 17, 2009 10:56 pm

night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I gave up by that point. I'd already paid for the game and they were already making me pay ongoing rent. I just saw Burning Crusade as a way to fleece more cash out of my pocket. To be honest, I'm pretty sure I downloaded all of the BC content anyway as I spent about 3 days getting patches at one point. That really cheesed me off.
Yes, you did. WoW is a week-long installation now, with the insane number of patches they've done. If I ever switch PCs again, WoW is getting cancelled. I'm not going through that BS again.
They really should give out reinstallation CDs/DVDs in Crusade (and all future expansions) as well as giving them away on the front cover of computer magazines. Without a subscription, the game itself is useless, so there is no reason for them to make you install part of this and download the rest. (Of course there will always need to be patches*, but you should be able to get hold of a disk that is less than a year out of date.

* = Talking of patches, WoWWiki says that one of Azeroth's two moons was removed by a patch. Does anyone know if this has been put back yet?
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:But having said that, I think that this "sameness" is something that could be taken over to the WoW RPG*. Really, all the PCs (and NPCs) should have slightly more similar Str, Con and Cha scores than standard D&D.
Not only same stats, but the same weight & height as well. ;)
If I went for that, I could buy one of those Games Workshop sets that contain 20 of exactly the same figure and just paint them slightly different colours! :P
Bonetti wrote:
Big Mac wrote: I was more thinking of something like:
  • A new realm starts with basic WoW,
  • The highest level players do X number of quests that "unlock" Burning Crusade,
  • Then they could do Y number of quests that "unlock" Wrath of the Lich King and
  • Then they could do Z number of quests that "unlock" Cataclysm.
They did this a couple of times. First, with the Ahn'Qiraj patch in retail WoW, where the participation in gathering quests plus the completion of an epic questline available only to the leading raid guilds allowed the gates of AQ to be opened. (It also rewarded a fairly unique mount.)

Second, it was done later with the Sunwell patch, in which completion of dailies (by everyone) opened the sections of Quel'Danas.

They opened the ability to have personal progression in-game with the introduction of phasing in Wrath (used in the Wrathgate sequence, heavily used leading to the Sons of Hodir, but also lightly used in places -- such as the flightmaster at Nesingwary's expedition in Sholazar). From what I hear, this will be widespread in the zone revamps in Cataclysm.
Obviously I didn't get far enough into the game to get near either of these things. I only got into the mid 30s and was at the stage where I either ran around doing easy quests I had had for ages (and not getting much XP) or dropping those quests and then getting hammered while doing higher level quests.
Bonetti wrote:(As a side note -- the AQ gate blockage, as part of world-wide raid competition, actually went over very poorly. Low pop servers were very slow to complete the gathering, and on at least one server there was only one guild capable of completing the questline. That guild demanded tribute before opening the gate. The whole thing was an interesting experiment, but it had some real drawbacks. And, frankly, "gather 400,000 heavy linen bandages" was dumb, slow, and boring. Quel'Danas worked better.)
Hmm. Sounds like I should cancel my plan to run a Spelljammer adventure where people have to discover the crystal sphere containing the city of Manifest and collect 500,000 sheets of Tereppekian Paper! :lol:
Bonetti wrote:Incidentally, I know someone who used to be on the WoW team. He said that they kept the RPG books around as the primary resource on layout and lore while building the world. I don't know if it's true anymore, but at the time the books were the only place all of this information was already assembled, collated, cross-referenced, etc.
I'm surprised they haven't all unofficially subscribed to things like WoWWiki or Throttbot to help push them into archiving all the information they need.
Bonetti wrote:All that being said, having looked over the game books at one point (with the intention of running a game there), I backed away from it and ended up heading back to Mystara. Azeroth's interesting, but it'd be difficult (for me at least) to divorce it enough from the MMO to make it worth playing in :-)
Ironically, experience with the MMO is what makes me want to look into doing a tabletop game there. You just can't do certain things in the MMO and a tabletop game would allow you to get past those limits.
night_druid wrote:A couple of more annoyances from the game:
* All NPCs & creatures have a sight & hearing range of 5 yards. They are unable to see, hear, or otherwise sense anything further away than 5 yards, unless they are attacked.

* 1 acre of farmland is enough to feed entire kingdoms.
I think that the MMO distorts distances and makes everything smaller than it actually would be on a real planet.
night_druid wrote:* There are several high elves in the alliance, including at least one town that's at least 1/3rd high elf, yet blood elves (who are physically identicle to high elves) are attacked on sight in any alliance-held territory. How do they tell the difference between high elves and blood elves?
Clearly NPCs in World of Warcraft have got the same sort of ability to see alignments that PCs have. There is also this weird thing where alliance people and horde people supposedly don't speak the same language. I don't think I'd be using that in a tabletop game.
Bonetti wrote:I kind of like that a town like Ratchet, which has a decent population in the RPG books (either 15k or 20k, if memory serves), has 10 or so in-game NPCs :-)

Oh, and the entire city of Stormwind has two active farms (and one overrun) -- and the farmers on the two real farms aren't doing anything because they're too busy hating each other and keeping their kids from marrying.
I mentioned the scale of the planet before. I do think it might be worth starting up another thread to try to compare RPG data and MMO data in order to attempt to work out how much the non RPG locations would need to be scaled up.
Bonetti wrote:On the other hand, one could take the in-game quest storylines and build some fairly lengthy adventures from them. The Defias storyline, for instance, or the Arugal storyline from Silverpine, etc, are all ripe for plucking.
The Defias Brotherhood is something that really makes me interested in looking into the RPG. There is a lot of information about them on the wiki page (although someone has slapped on a cleanup template, so some of the information may be problematic).
night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:I'm annoyed that they didn't build onto Outland (née Draenor), which is just screaming for additional zones being tacked on by discovering new "islands" of the former world. Not to mention the number of portals to other worlds it should have, being a sort of planar nexus...
Well, Outland more or less covers the portion of Draenor that was mapped in Warcraft II. But its strongly hinted at, given the presence of so many alien races (the birds, ethereals, and a couple of others) that Outland should be connected to a number of other worlds.
Hmm. Well, this is something that could easily be expanded upon by a GM running a tabletop game.

I'm currently thinking that Outland needs some Planescape-like connections while pre-destruction Draenor would have fitted better into a Spelljammer crystal sphere.
Bonetti wrote:There are four explicit portals to other worlds (the ones Illidan closed in WC3:TFT), three of which are in-game in WoW. I was rather hoping they would eventually open those portals back up and take things in that direction. I'd like to see Xoroth and Argus some day, and maybe the ethereal's homeworld as well.
Are these four portals on the wiki? If they are then it should, hopefully, be possible for a GM to use all of them (regardless of which ones are active in the MMO).
Bonetti wrote:
night_druid wrote:I might use Azeroth, but I'd use my own storylines. Or maybe my own world.
My biggest problem is I've been playing since very early alpha (over six years now), so a lot is mentally firmly fixed.

On the other hand, there are some great names there. I flat out stole "Splintertree" for a woods-dwelling orc tribe I used when starting a group through B10 a couple years ago. The WoW-players in the group got a kick out of that :-)
Well, I haven't played as much as either of you, but I do think it is possible to run a tabletop game in a version of Azeroth that isn't necessarily identical to the original version.
night_druid wrote:Another annoyance to include in your WoW RPG, Big Mac: high-level adventurers constantly BEGGING. "Can I have all your money?" And they are annoying about it, too, chasing you everywhere while begging for money. Sheez, if you don't spend your cash on vanity mounts, you might actually be able to afford a flying mount with some patience and questing. Its not like you don't roll in money soon after you get your mount (I went from like 20 gp to 650 gp in about 2-3 weeks with just normal questing in Outland). Sorry, pet peeve. Tired of being harrassed by level 60+ beggers (which you could ding their honor/rep for doing that crap).
Well, if I wanted to be that realistic to the MMO, I would set up a Chinese Gold Farming business on the side and charge players cash to have their character sheets bumped up! :lol:

EDIT: "[Warcraft]" tag removed.
Last edited by Big Mac on Sun Aug 08, 2010 5:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Tue Nov 17, 2009 11:02 pm

night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I think this stuff is all interesting. Gameplay ranting* aside, I think the other stuff has possibilities for a game. I don't personally see the mass of MMO events as a bad thing (or a reason to avoid using Azeroth). I see them as things that a GM can use to create additional monsters, NPCs and plot hooks. The three netbooks that are in production look like they might be partially, or entirely, based on ideas grabbed from the MMO.
Eh, less monsters than you might think. A LOT of models are reused constantly. Most of the time, just take a standard real-world critter, add 10 levels, increase the size slightly and change its color, and you've got a trash mob for the next zone. Boars, bears, wolves, & spiders (hairy & spindlely) are the prime examples of this practice. I think half of the monsters in the game are variations of the same six or so creatures.
But on the plus side: I would only need to buy six types of miniatures! :D

Talking of miniatures, is there anyone out there that makes murlocks?

EDIT: "[Warcraft]" tag removed.
Last edited by Big Mac on Sun Aug 08, 2010 5:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Bonetti » Wed Nov 18, 2009 12:17 am

MMO stuff:
Big Mac wrote:They really should give out reinstallation CDs/DVDs in Crusade (and all future expansions) as well as giving them away on the front cover of computer magazines.
Depending on your net connection, you can hit FilePlanet (or similar) and pull down the full game client as of Wrath, plus the Ultimate Patch (which goes from that install straight to the current patch level in a single shot). That would let you prep the install well in advance, especially if you're on a slower connection. Mind you -- the full installer is 6.6GB, and the patch in question is another 1.3GB, which might be prohibitive... but that's what work/school network connections and thumb drives are for, right? ;-)

There's also a trial client that streams the data as needed, I have no idea how well that works, what it takes to convert to non-streaming, or if it even works with non-trial accounts.
Big Mac wrote:
night_druid wrote: Boars, bears, wolves, & spiders (hairy & spindlely) are the prime examples of this practice. I think half of the monsters in the game are variations of the same six or so creatures.
But on the plus side: I would only need to buy six types of miniatures! :D
I think they add two per xpac, so they're up to 10 now ;-)
Big Mac wrote:Talking of miniatures, is there anyone out there that makes murlocks?
I would love to have murloc miniatures, if only to -a- put them out on the board, and -b- do my best murloc gurgle as they appear :-) (I do have the plush Murky (baby murloc), but it's not a very good size for regular miniatures...)
Big Mac wrote:I'm surprised they haven't all unofficially subscribed to things like WoWWiki or Throttbot to help push them into archiving all the information they need.
I'm sure they reference WowWiki from time to time, but I suspect at this point they need an internal archive. (I seem to recall seeing Blizzard looking for a librarian/archivist not too long ago, actually -- the team's grown significantly and they need to keep them on the same page.)

OK, on to my responses:
Big Mac wrote:
Bonetti wrote:All that being said, having looked over the game books at one point (with the intention of running a game there), I backed away from it and ended up heading back to Mystara. Azeroth's interesting, but it'd be difficult (for me at least) to divorce it enough from the MMO to make it worth playing in :-)
Ironically, experience with the MMO is what makes me want to look into doing a tabletop game there. You just can't do certain things in the MMO and a tabletop game would allow you to get past those limits.
I was there at one point, too. However, at this point I've played both factions extensively, and have had multiple level-capped characters at each level cap. It would be fairly difficult for me to separate the in-game "this is how it is and what's going on" from the tabletop game. It would be interesting to watch (and help) someone else make it work.
Big Mac wrote:
Bonetti wrote:On the other hand, one could take the in-game quest storylines and build some fairly lengthy adventures from them. The Defias storyline, for instance, or the Arugal storyline from Silverpine, etc, are all ripe for plucking.
The Defias Brotherhood is something that really makes me interested in looking into the RPG. There is a lot of information about them on the wiki page (although someone has slapped on a cleanup template, so some of the information may be problematic).
The Defias page you linked looks pretty much correct. The cleanup is because it's a fairly massive copyright violation, pulling directly from the RPG books.

In 4th edition terms, one could easily build an adventure path with the Heroic Tier being Westfall/Defias/van Cleef, Paragon Tier being straightening out the issues in Red Ridge and Duskwood raised by the armies being called to war elsewhere, and Epic Tier dealing with Searing Gorge, the Dark Iron Dwarves, and some combination of the mess in Blackrock (if there's room, do both the dwarves of the depths and Ragnaros, and the humanoid tribes and dragonflight in the spire plus Blackwing Lair).

The Arugal/Scythe of Elune storyline is also quite interesting, if you haven't checked it out.
Big Mac wrote:Are these four portals on the wiki? If they are then it should, hopefully, be possible for a GM to use all of them (regardless of which ones are active in the MMO).
Sort of. I don't recall the lore from Ner'zhul's experimentation off-hand, but that could certainly be used as a basis for a series of adventures in Outland (as the portals re-open), or in pre-sundering Draenor (closing the portals he abandoned). The three in-game are documented at WowWiki, but not where they lead. I'd make one go to Xoroth, one to Argus, and one to the felhound homeworld (not sure if that's been named, WowWiki doesn't know, but I'd link it to Hakkar the Houndmaster or his successor, Baelmon). I'd probably put the fourth one on one of the fragments disconnected from the continent, either lurking off the south of Terokkar or somewhere near Netherstorm, and link it to one of the remaining Burning Legion races, probably the mo'arg/gan'arg, annihilan (pit lords), or shivarra -- although the sayaad (succibi) homeworld would probably be a lot of fun :-)

Incidentally, you were making Spelljammer-esque noises. I recommend checking out the dimensional ships of the naaru (and used by the Draenei). I always thought they looked like crystalline nautiloids...

There was a fair amount of player/fan resistance to the blood elf/draenei storyline at the launch of Burning Crusade (or at least a lot of complaining about it being "not fantasy" or "too sci-fi"). Personally, I really liked the whole idea of a shattered world and magical spaceships, but I really embraced the Spelljammer ideas back when they launched. Sadly, my group at the time didn't, and I even had a player walk out in the middle of a play session when it registered for him that things had turned that direction.
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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Wed Nov 18, 2009 2:24 pm

Bonetti wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Talking of miniatures, is there anyone out there that makes murlocks?
I would love to have murloc miniatures, if only to -a- put them out on the board, and -b- do my best murloc gurgle as they appear :-) (I do have the plush Murky (baby murloc), but it's not a very good size for regular miniatures...)
I found some...indirectly. Fantasy Flight Games made a World of Warcraft boardgame and that had some in. Trouble is, Fantasy Flight Games have totally turned their back on World of Warcraft (and anything compatible with D&D) so you will only get this second hand. You can read more about the minis on Greywolf's miniatures gallery. But here is a pic (click for larger version):
Image

Rwww!, Rwww!, Rwww!, Rwww!, Rww!
Bonetti wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I'm surprised they haven't all unofficially subscribed to things like WoWWiki or Throttbot to help push them into archiving all the information they need.
I'm sure they reference WowWiki from time to time, but I suspect at this point they need an internal archive. (I seem to recall seeing Blizzard looking for a librarian/archivist not too long ago, actually -- the team's grown significantly and they need to keep them on the same page.)
I think that Lucasfilm had that problem a long time ago. (No pun intended.) Given that nerdy fans are interested in this stuff enough to buy things like an atlas of World of Warcraft, I think that this sort of archiving isn't something that is totally a loss. If they had hosted their own Warcraft wiki, they could have bound the best articles into a hardback book and then sold it to people.
Bonetti wrote:OK, on to my responses:
Big Mac wrote:
Bonetti wrote:All that being said, having looked over the game books at one point (with the intention of running a game there), I backed away from it and ended up heading back to Mystara. Azeroth's interesting, but it'd be difficult (for me at least) to divorce it enough from the MMO to make it worth playing in :-)
Ironically, experience with the MMO is what makes me want to look into doing a tabletop game there. You just can't do certain things in the MMO and a tabletop game would allow you to get past those limits.
I was there at one point, too. However, at this point I've played both factions extensively, and have had multiple level-capped characters at each level cap. It would be fairly difficult for me to separate the in-game "this is how it is and what's going on" from the tabletop game. It would be interesting to watch (and help) someone else make it work.
Well, I don't even have the World of Warcraft RPG books yet, but I am currently thinking of "entrenching myself in third edition" and want to buy up as many good 3e compatible campaign settings as I can (and obtain 3e conversions of classic TSR settings). So, I'm actually trying to work out how the game feels at the moment (hence this thread :P ;) ).

I'm figuring that, while the MMO can be inspiration...and a source of ideas that enhance the RPG (as well as a great source for artwork) the incompatibility in levels and other game mechanics means that I would need to "let the MMO" go and play the RPG the way the RPG books tell you too.

But Night Druid did have some interesting ideas on using WoW quests for D&D (a while ago in another part of the forum) and I do wonder if you could take his ideas, abandon the traditional idea of the "big epic campaign" and offer player a bunch of small modular quests that they can take or leave. I think that some basic quests might even be the sort of thing that 1st level characters can do without getting killed. And I do very much like the idea that RPG PCs could be doing one quest and could pick up another one or two before they finish the first. Essentially, they would always be "doing something" that would make the group (of players) have a reason to come back next time and finish that part of the story.

I also think that the way that people who play the MMO know that players group together, could help the players incorporate a new player (or deal with the loss or temporary loss of an existing player) a lot more easily. If everyone accepts that Azeroth is full of adventures that get together to do specific quests, then a new quest can be the hook that brings in a new person. (And some sort of downtime quest, could be a good excuse to send a PC away.)

If the players really want to bond, then the guild system from the MMO would seem to be a good way to do it. Essentially, they could work together to earn the right to call themselves a guild.

I think that with a level of that sort of logic, you could push the players towards doing certain things without it seeming like railroading. Essentially, if the PCs go into a town with a problem and want the right to do certain stuff, the local mayor can tell them the town has a problem with X, Y or Z and if they help him deal with part of the problem, the town will let them have A, B or C. That to me would seem to capture a bit more of the MMO feel...but I do especially like the idea that the PCs can take up some of these quests and then put them to one side if they turn out to be a bit hard for them. It might also be possible to get simple quests done in short sessions (like the Commoner Campaign with Joe Wood that Ash found on the WotC forums).

The MMO has a good pick it up and drop it feel and if a World of Warcraft RPG could capture that, it is possible that players may feel that their characters are archiving things at a very fast pace (even if those individual things had lower XP awards).

Another thing I think the MMO does that is very interesting (to a RPG fan) is the way that it deals with its trades. Skinning a million wolves or fishing a thousand fish is a bit boring, but I generally think the way that these skills have advancement is a lot more interesting than 3e's skill system. While wanting to play this sort of thing down a bit, I think it might be fun to have PCs do a dungeon adventure and then have a couple of players run round with pick-axes looking for treasure in the walls that they can dig out. I think this could be a realistic way to give all PCs (rather than just the rogues) something that they can search for after a fight.

And the big trades in D&D (like blacksmithing) always seemed to be too expensive (as you had to buy a smithy), but the MMO has a system where people borrow a communal furnace to make stuff. So I think that it would be interesting to make the cities of Azeroth into places where all of these things can be hired to make stuff.

I don't know if you could get players to make their own weapons or magic items, but I think it would be cool if you could get them to make some of their own stuff.
Bonetti wrote:
Big Mac wrote:
Bonetti wrote:On the other hand, one could take the in-game quest storylines and build some fairly lengthy adventures from them. The Defias storyline, for instance, or the Arugal storyline from Silverpine, etc, are all ripe for plucking.
The Defias Brotherhood is something that really makes me interested in looking into the RPG. There is a lot of information about them on the wiki page (although someone has slapped on a cleanup template, so some of the information may be problematic).
The Defias page you linked looks pretty much correct. The cleanup is because it's a fairly massive copyright violation, pulling directly from the RPG books.

In 4th edition terms, one could easily build an adventure path with the Heroic Tier being Westfall/Defias/van Cleef, Paragon Tier being straightening out the issues in Red Ridge and Duskwood raised by the armies being called to war elsewhere, and Epic Tier dealing with Searing Gorge, the Dark Iron Dwarves, and some combination of the mess in Blackrock (if there's room, do both the dwarves of the depths and Ragnaros, and the humanoid tribes and dragonflight in the spire plus Blackwing Lair).
Well, I'm not really up on 4e and have no plans to move that way, but I'd be more than willing to learn what an adventure path was if it could help make a 3e game work better. I do think that these MMO quests build up on top of other MMO quests, so that if the players do something (like fight minor Defias Brotherhood bandits) they logically gain the opportunity to keep fighting them. With the MMO quests all documented, a GM could treat the lot as plot hooks.

I suppose the main problem would be players that know the MMO like the back of their hand. But then again, if everyone knows that the GM will not run quests exactly like the MMO engine, the "textbook solutions" would not work. Secret agents could be changed and secret entrances could be moved. Maps could be tweaked.

Something else that would be good, would be that a GM could allow PCs to pretend to be on the other side. I think that would have a ton of potential for improving story lines. And who is to say that a gaming group wouldn't decide that the Defias Brotherhood (or some other organisation) was not in the right and actually switch to their side. Maybe the PCs could help the van Cleef to force Stormwind to grant the Defias Brotherhood a pardon and pay them the money they owe them.

I think this is somewhere where the RPG has more potential than the MMO. Because there two groups available to PCs in the MMO and a lot more that could be available in a RPG. PCs might even be able to play one side off against the other or try to remain neutral and heal rifts between groups. So you could start off with the Warcraft world and then let the players push it in one of thousands of different directions.

(Personally, if I was a player, I'd be seeking to create a guild that aims for the genocide of all murlocks! :twisted: )
Bonetti wrote:The Arugal/Scythe of Elune storyline is also quite interesting, if you haven't checked it out.
I don't think I have seen that (or if I saw it I forgot it). I'll have to check it out on the WoWWiki sometime.
Bonetti wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Are these four portals on the wiki? If they are then it should, hopefully, be possible for a GM to use all of them (regardless of which ones are active in the MMO).
Sort of. I don't recall the lore from Ner'zhul's experimentation off-hand, but that could certainly be used as a basis for a series of adventures in Outland (as the portals re-open), or in pre-sundering Draenor (closing the portals he abandoned). The three in-game are documented at WowWiki, but not where they lead. I'd make one go to Xoroth, one to Argus, and one to the felhound homeworld (not sure if that's been named, WowWiki doesn't know, but I'd link it to Hakkar the Houndmaster or his successor, Baelmon). I'd probably put the fourth one on one of the fragments disconnected from the continent, either lurking off the south of Terokkar or somewhere near Netherstorm, and link it to one of the remaining Burning Legion races, probably the mo'arg/gan'arg, annihilan (pit lords), or shivarra -- although the sayaad (succibi) homeworld would probably be a lot of fun :-)
These places seem pretty high level to me, so I'd probably not worry about them at the begining. (I would want to start off with 1st level action.) But I think that your ideas would be good if the players exausted Azeroth. I think this is the sort of thing that could be made into a netbook.
Bonetti wrote:Incidentally, you were making Spelljammer-esque noises. I recommend checking out the dimensional ships of the naaru (and used by the Draenei). I always thought they looked like crystalline nautiloids...
They certainly do! The concept art doesn't look too much like one, but the actual MMO graphics are very similar in shape.

Naruu ship concept art:
Image

Arcatraz:
Image

Merhaner:
Image

Botanica:
Image

Exodar:
Image

I wonder if anyone can extract the maps of the ships to create "deck plans".

Incidentally, if you look at my and Havard, he is the guy that wants to put everything onto Mystara and I'm the guy that wants to build a Spelljammer crystal sphere around everything. :lol: So I would be happy to see the World of Warcraft planetary system expanded enough for fans to make Azerothspace (or Warcraftspace).
Bonetti wrote:There was a fair amount of player/fan resistance to the blood elf/draenei storyline at the launch of Burning Crusade (or at least a lot of complaining about it being "not fantasy" or "too sci-fi").
I remember very very similar resistance to Spelljammer. The thing is space fantasy, rather than science fiction, but people just shut their ears to the "facts" and make an instant judgement that "things are wrong". Once they have done that, you can't get through to people.

I find it very strange actually. You can get fantasy players to "buy" magical healing or even the ability to come back from the dead and they don't question flying carpets. But as soon as you talk about flying to the moon, some people seem to drop their fantasy mindset (which should have them asking you if it is made out of cheese) and they start asking random scientific questions (about stuff like gravity or vacuum). There seems to be an assumption by some people that the moon would be inhabited by alien-like people flying around in UFOs when (in the context of World of Warcraft) it could be more likely to be inhabited by 30 foot high murlocks that eat rocks and swim in the sand of Blue Child.
Bonetti wrote:Personally, I really liked the whole idea of a shattered world and magical spaceships, but I really embraced the Spelljammer ideas back when they launched. Sadly, my group at the time didn't, and I even had a player walk out in the middle of a play session when it registered for him that things had turned that direction.
What WoW have done with their Dimensional Ships seems to be much more similar to the 4e "Spelljammer" than the 2e (or SotSM) spelljamming ship. I think I would personally have preferred to have seen outland stay on the material plane (Great Dark Beyond).

I think it is a real shame that your gaming group didn't want to have anything to do with Spelljammer. There are a few people in my group who don't like SJ (but a couple that are really interested in it because it might be made to be similar to Traveller). I've seen another person on The Piazza who had similar problems with Ravenloft. (I'm not personally a fan of horror, but I think it is poor form to walk out in the middle of a session*.) I think I would have enjoyed being in your game, but if I didn't like the way I thought your game was headed, I would wait until the end of your session and had a private word with you about my concerns.

* = The most disruptive thing I've ever done to a game was actually to have my PC (not me) walk out in the middle of a game. (Another players PC also walked out. We both got into an adventure that turned out to be an unexpected battle against a ton of drow. One of the other PCs decided to kill every NPC that our group captured and that conflicted against the personalities of my PC and the other PC that left. We captured two NPCs who basically "gave us their paroll" and gave us assistance against the people we were fighting. After that, my PC and the other PC both decided that these people needed to either be handed over to the local authorities, or made to promise to go away and be let go. The group agreed to this at the time, but one sneaky PC went back and effectively murdered our prisoners. The second time they did this was just stupid, because we picked up a drow that knew the place like the back of her hand and who wanted to kill the local leader. Sure, she would have tried to stab us in the back, but she would have helped us first, and my PC would have been prepared to kill her as soon as it was clear that she was prepared to break her word.

I tend to get immersed in my PCs, when I play, and I could either fight the other PC or have my PC walk out. The PC just wasn't playable as part of that group any more, because the group was openly going against my PCs honour. And a big PC vs PC fight would have been a lot more disruptive than removing my PC from the conflict. If I had had time, I'd have rolled up a xenophobic evil drow hating PC to replace the one I pulled out and then killed the drow so fast that nobody got any answers out of them. :twisted:


Anyhoo, one of the things that I've always loved about Spelljammer (and to a lesser extent Planescape) is the way that, as well as functioning as a setting in its own right, it can also be a method of connectivity between one setting and another setting. The sailing ships and goblin airships in the MMO form a convenient hop on and hop off mechanism that take MMO PCs from one continent to another. I see Spelljammer as something that could be used to take PCs from Azeroth to Athas or any other random campaign setting world.

I personally find that possibility for interconnectivity very exciting. Because it gives you thousands of possible things that might happen. What might the Defias Brotherhood be able to do if they stole a Dimension Ship and flew to Oerth? What could the Forsaken do if they travelled to Maztica on Toril? What could the scro do on Karpri if they managed to recruit murlocks to fight the local elves?

EDIT: "[Warcraft]" tag removed.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:38 pm

Big Mac wrote:I think that the MMO distorts distances and makes everything smaller than it actually would be on a real planet.
The "continents" are roughly equal in size to Manhatten Island, or maybe twice that big. They're tiny, and the game feels tiny. :p

Clearly NPCs in World of Warcraft have got the same sort of ability to see alignments that PCs have. There is also this weird thing where alliance people and horde people supposedly don't speak the same language. I don't think I'd be using that in a tabletop game.
Supposedly Horde isn't evil (laughs hysterically). :p
Well, I haven't played as much as either of you, but I do think it is possible to run a tabletop game in a version of Azeroth that isn't necessarily identical to the original version.
WoW is *barely* reconnizable as the Azeroth from the previous Warcraft games. I kinda hope that in the next patch they increase the zone sizes. Won't happen, I know, but I can dream, right?
Well, if I wanted to be that realistic to the MMO, I would set up a Chinese Gold Farming business on the side and charge players cash to have their character sheets bumped up! :lol:
I think that's represented by the player dropping a $20 on the floor right in front of the GM while rolling his dice. When the GM picks it up, he says, "ah, keep it. Oh, btw, I rolled an 18 on Str". ;)
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Val.S » Wed Nov 18, 2009 6:54 pm

Big Mac wrote:
I think that the MMO distorts distances and makes everything smaller than it actually would be on a real planet.


The "continents" are roughly equal in size to Manhatten Island, or maybe twice that big. They're tiny, and the game feels tiny. :p
Wow is an 'amusement park' so long as you enjoy the rides it's cool, but it feel's like there's nowhere you can go out and just sit and pass the time quietly without a myriad of distractions clamouring for your attention, all of them telling you how neccessary they are in order to be complete..... :P

I can understand it from a design point of view (maximising gain from your creative staff etc) but, for me, the experience can suffer because of it.

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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Wed Nov 18, 2009 7:25 pm

night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I think that the MMO distorts distances and makes everything smaller than it actually would be on a real planet.
The "continents" are roughly equal in size to Manhatten Island, or maybe twice that big. They're tiny, and the game feels tiny. :p
...and...
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Well, I haven't played as much as either of you, but I do think it is possible to run a tabletop game in a version of Azeroth that isn't necessarily identical to the original version.
WoW is *barely* reconnizable as the Azeroth from the previous Warcraft games. I kinda hope that in the next patch they increase the zone sizes. Won't happen, I know, but I can dream, right?
Well, this is all stuff that could be "fixed" for a tabletop game. The question would be how to increase the zone sizes:
  • Do you just magnify everything (including the towns and cities)?
  • Do you magnify the open space, but keep the towns and cities at their current sizes?
  • Do you magnify everything, but magnify towns and cities at a smaller (or greater) magnification?
  • Do you enlarge the zones, but keep the mapped areas the same (adding in new lands to fill in the gap?
  • Do you employ different solutions for different types of terrain?
I can't find anything about the size of the planet Azeroth. Does anyone know a way to work out how big the planet should be (and how big it actually is in the MMO).
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Clearly NPCs in World of Warcraft have got the same sort of ability to see alignments that PCs have. There is also this weird thing where alliance people and horde people supposedly don't speak the same language. I don't think I'd be using that in a tabletop game.
Supposedly Horde isn't evil (laughs hysterically). :p
I suppose technically, Aliance and Horde could be Lawful and Chaotic, but...ah, what the hell - Blizzard are crazy. Everyone knows elves are good and orcs are evil.
Val.S wrote:
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I think that the MMO distorts distances and makes everything smaller than it actually would be on a real planet.
The "continents" are roughly equal in size to Manhatten Island, or maybe twice that big. They're tiny, and the game feels tiny. :p
Wow is an 'amusement park' so long as you enjoy the rides it's cool, but it feel's like there's nowhere you can go out and just sit and pass the time quietly without a myriad of distractions clamouring for your attention, all of them telling you how neccessary they are in order to be complete..... :P
True. I took on pretty much every quest I was offered and then felt burned out when I couldn't get rid of the old ones as fast as I was being offered new ones.

And then, I met WoW players, who thought they could "help me" by directing me. I ended up feeling that I wasn't able to enjoy moving around the gameworld to explore it.

I tried doing some exploration, but then you wander into the wrong area (and get stomped on by the monsters or the other team of players). I remember getting bored with the playstyle once and exploring the terrain in ghost form.

A friend of mine swam around the entire continent, so that they could try to get access to beaches and other places that were impossible to walk to via foot. I've also heard of players sneaking around to try to gain access to other in-accessable areas (like the Ironforge airport).
Val.S wrote:I can understand it from a design point of view (maximising gain from your creative staff etc) but, for me, the experience can suffer because of it.
You know, I've actually had more fun sometimes, standing behind a WoW player and enjoying the view. While they have to concentate on keeping their PC alive, I can look at the buildings, monsters and other features. I would love to be able to dig into my WoW installation, use the game engine to be able to fly around Azeroth on the back of a giant eagle. Of course, I'm sure Blizzard wouldn't want people running private servers instead of playing the game online.

EDIT: "[Warcraft]" tag removed.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Wed Nov 18, 2009 8:03 pm

Big Mac wrote:Well, this is all stuff that could be "fixed" for a tabletop game. The question would be how to increase the zone sizes:
I'd just assume there's a huge amount of wilderness that isn't well-represented by the game. A trip from Goldshire to Stormwind should take a day to walk, for example, or more. So instead of Goldshire being 500' from Stormwind's gate, it should be a good 10-20 miles. Or in other words, put Stormwind where Silverymoon is, and Goldshire would be down around where Booty Bay is. In between is small farmsteads and villages. And Goldshire would be on a scale similar to Stormwind (in terms of size & number of buildings), while Stormwind would be a sprawling city bigger than two large zones combined.

Also, it'd be nice if there was actual *stuff* in huts and whatnot. Its hilarious to run into a hut, and all the guy has is maybe a rug. And the hut is enormous. ;)
I can't find anything about the size of the planet Azeroth. Does anyone know a way to work out how big the planet should be (and how big it actually is in the MMO).
Well, there is nothing set in stone that Azeroth is a traditional planet; it may occupy a small part of a plain of endless ocean. But from the globes I've seen, I think its at best a small size B planet, on the order of maybe 20 to 40 miles in diameter.
I suppose technically, Aliance and Horde could be Lawful and Chaotic, but...ah, what the hell - Blizzard are crazy. Everyone knows elves are good and orcs are evil.
Naw, they're ALL evil. The only "innocents" I can think of are dwarves and gnomes. Everyone else are rotten bastards who deserve to die :P
True. I took on pretty much every quest I was offered and then felt burned out when I couldn't get rid of the old ones as fast as I was being offered new ones.
Its very difficult to "finish" a zone without being forced into traveling half the frigg'n planet to finish some stupid quest.
I tried doing some exploration, but then you wander into the wrong area (and get stomped on by the monsters or the other team of players). I remember getting bored with the playstyle once and exploring the terrain in ghost form.
Play PVE servers with your PVP flag down ;) But yeah, knowing which zones are leveled for you is key :p

A friend of mine swam around the entire continent, so that they could try to get access to beaches and other places that were impossible to walk to via foot. I've also heard of players sneaking around to try to gain access to other in-accessable areas (like the Ironforge airport).
That stuff used to be a lot easier. The developers have closed off almost all access to those areas now :( I had a friend who snuck into Karazan before it opened (just empty halls). :) Should all be open once the new expansion is released and everyone can fly anywhere.
You know, I've actually had more fun sometimes, standing behind a WoW player and enjoying the view. While they have to concentate on keeping their PC alive, I can look at the buildings, monsters and other features. I would love to be able to dig into my WoW installation, use the game engine to be able to fly around Azeroth on the back of a giant eagle. Of course, I'm sure Blizzard wouldn't want people running private servers instead of playing the game online.
Yeah, same here. Its very artistic.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Sun Nov 22, 2009 3:08 am

night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Well, this is all stuff that could be "fixed" for a tabletop game. The question would be how to increase the zone sizes:
I'd just assume there's a huge amount of wilderness that isn't well-represented by the game. A trip from Goldshire to Stormwind should take a day to walk, for example, or more. So instead of Goldshire being 500' from Stormwind's gate, it should be a good 10-20 miles. Or in other words, put Stormwind where Silverymoon is, and Goldshire would be down around where Booty Bay is. In between is small farmsteads and villages. And Goldshire would be on a scale similar to Stormwind (in terms of size & number of buildings), while Stormwind would be a sprawling city bigger than two large zones combined.
Hmm. I think some reinterpretation of the map would definitely be in order. If the entire planet was scaled up in the sort of 500 yards becomes 10-20 miles sort of factor, then cites could be moved apart as you suggest.

Locations like Goldshire and Stormwind could keep their outer shapes, but would need to be blown up too. So I would suggst keeping MMO streets as the main streets and adding in more side streets. The MMO has the odd shed in the middle of nowhere and they could be used as the locations of your "new" farmsteads and villages.

The existing farms would have to turn into the largest farms. New farms could be based on the existing MMO layouts, and the MMO farms could either be given more buildings or could be given much more territory than other farms.
night_druid wrote:Also, it'd be nice if there was actual *stuff* in huts and whatnot. Its hilarious to run into a hut, and all the guy has is maybe a rug. And the hut is enormous. ;)
The big huts would work better if the cultures of Azeroth were known for having communal housing and communal farms. But that wouldn't explain how a big hut only contains a single item.
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I can't find anything about the size of the planet Azeroth. Does anyone know a way to work out how big the planet should be (and how big it actually is in the MMO).
Well, there is nothing set in stone that Azeroth is a traditional planet; it may occupy a small part of a plain of endless ocean. But from the globes I've seen, I think its at best a small size B planet, on the order of maybe 20 to 40 miles in diameter.
A size B planet? Would that be small enough to explain the MMO scale? Pehaps reducing the size of the planet is another way to solve the size of the MMO.
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I suppose technically, Aliance and Horde could be Lawful and Chaotic, but...ah, what the hell - Blizzard are crazy. Everyone knows elves are good and orcs are evil.
Naw, they're ALL evil. The only "innocents" I can think of are dwarves and gnomes. Everyone else are rotten bastards who deserve to die :P
Well, the gnomes of Spelljammer had the secret weapon "E = MC squared". Perhaps the gnomes of Warcraft should be given the secret weapon "Ctrl + Alt + Del"! :lol:
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:True. I took on pretty much every quest I was offered and then felt burned out when I couldn't get rid of the old ones as fast as I was being offered new ones.
Its very difficult to "finish" a zone without being forced into traveling half the frigg'n planet to finish some stupid quest.
While annoying, this does suggest a level of interconnectivity that could be used as a plot hook when sending RPG PCs from one area to another.
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I tried doing some exploration, but then you wander into the wrong area (and get stomped on by the monsters or the other team of players). I remember getting bored with the playstyle once and exploring the terrain in ghost form.
Play PVE servers with your PVP flag down ;) But yeah, knowing which zones are leveled for you is key :p
If I started to play again, I would do that. Unfortunately the first person in our group who joined WoW preferred PvP and thought that PvE was boring. He told everyone else what server to sign up with, but didn't explain the reasoning.
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:A friend of mine swam around the entire continent, so that they could try to get access to beaches and other places that were impossible to walk to via foot. I've also heard of players sneaking around to try to gain access to other in-accessable areas (like the Ironforge airport).
That stuff used to be a lot easier. The developers have closed off almost all access to those areas now :( I had a friend who snuck into Karazan before it opened (just empty halls). :) Should all be open once the new expansion is released and everyone can fly anywhere.
Wow. Being able to fly anywhere would be more likely to tempt me back. But I won't even consider it without a limitless internet connection and a better network card.
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:You know, I've actually had more fun sometimes, standing behind a WoW player and enjoying the view. While they have to concentate on keeping their PC alive, I can look at the buildings, monsters and other features. I would love to be able to dig into my WoW installation, use the game engine to be able to fly around Azeroth on the back of a giant eagle. Of course, I'm sure Blizzard wouldn't want people running private servers instead of playing the game online.
Yeah, same here. Its very artistic.
The MMO artwork is definately something that could inspire a tabletop RPG group. And being able to record a trip down a road could be a great way to create one of these game introduction videos that everyone is doing these days.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Bonetti » Thu Jan 21, 2010 11:44 pm

night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I suppose technically, Aliance and Horde could be Lawful and Chaotic, but...ah, what the hell - Blizzard are crazy. Everyone knows elves are good and orcs are evil.
Naw, they're ALL evil. The only "innocents" I can think of are dwarves and gnomes. Everyone else are rotten bastards who deserve to die :P
The original Horde was controlled by the Burning Legion, a Chaotic group of demons (as opposed to the Titans, who are very much on the side of Order).

Of the races, I believe only the gnomes don't have an evil faction as an ordinary group (the leper gnomes are twisted by their exposure to the radiation released in Gnomeregan). The old orcs of Horde continue with Rend Blackhand in Blackrock Spire, the tauren have the Grimtotem clan, there are many evil troll tribes, the Forsaken grew out of the Scourge, there are several evil blood elf factions. On the Alliance side, you have the Defias, Scarlet Crusade and Cult of the Damned for humans, black iron dwarves, and the draenei are the same race as the eredar -- the leaders of the Burning Legion (like Archimonde). The night elves have their own set of twisted druids (damaged by whatever's corrupting the Emerald Dream), and they caused most of the catastrophic events of Azeroth -- from the Burning Legion's invasion to releasing the gates of Ahn'Qiraj -- not to mention the poor decision to replace the world tree (see the story of the rotting, corrupt Teldrassil). At least the original Horde had the excuse of not being in control of their own actions via an externally imposed evil ;-)

But...

everyone knows that the modern Horde is the good guys (and is all about second chances and fixing past mistakes), full of sweetness and light, and the Alliance is a bunch of arrogant, overbearing bad guys!

Well... we were, until Garrosh dethrones Thrall in Cataclysm. *sigh*

(All unserious faction-bashing aside, I do like how shades of grey everything is on Azeroth.)
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:01 am

Bonetti wrote:everyone knows that the modern Horde is the good guys (and is all about second chances and fixing past mistakes), full of sweetness and light, and the Alliance is a bunch of arrogant, overbearing bad guys!
I've played the Horde quests; they're pretty black-hearted evil bastards. Orcs are on a rampage in Ashenveil (attacking the night elves & destroying their forest & homes without provocation), and Thrall is well aware of the plague the Foresaken are brewing (he just didn't think they'd turn on him so quick). At best Trall is naive and a fool. ;) (I thought Trall was awesome in Warcraft III, much less so in WoW).

And Alliance is a bunch of arrogant overbearing jerks. ;)

Of course, I *still* don't see how EITHER side would allow Death Knights in. Or warlocks, for that matter, given the recent history of the planet. I think the standard reaction to either would be to run, or 'git a rope'. :lol:
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Bonetti » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:39 am

night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:everyone knows that the modern Horde is the good guys (and is all about second chances and fixing past mistakes), full of sweetness and light, and the Alliance is a bunch of arrogant, overbearing bad guys!
I've played the Horde quests; they're pretty black-hearted evil bastards. Orcs are on a rampage in Ashenveil (attacking the night elves & destroying their forest & homes without provocation), and Thrall is well aware of the plague the Foresaken are brewing (he just didn't think they'd turn on him so quick). At best Trall is naive and a fool. ;) (I thought Trall was awesome in Warcraft III, much less so in WoW).
The Ashenvale conflict is rooted in the Horde need for wood to build their new city on this (supposedly) safe and isolated continent (and Grom being removed from the temptation of tapping the old demonic blood again by being in an out of the way place). The night elves reacted by trying to exterminate the orcs, and when their first attempt at genocide failed, they enlisted a demigod (Cenarius). Faced with that, Grom submitted to Mannoroth again to have the power to avoid the extinction of his people, slew Cenarius, and now the two sides are pretty much going to be at each others' throats forevermore.

FWIW, given Thrall's preference for diplomacy, had the Sentinels not started by attempting to kill all the orcs, there's a good chance an arrangement could have been met. Instead, it cost the orcs one of their greatest heroes and the night elves one of their gods.

I think it's pretty clear from the events of the Wrathgate that the plague research from the Royal Apothecary Society is not blessed by Thrall or Sylvanas, and that it's more Scourge/Burning Legion activity being spearheaded by the supposedly subdued Varimathras. The RAS betrays both sides there, and there's evidence that they (unlike most Forsaken) have not actually broken the bonds of the Lich King's control.
night_druid wrote:Of course, I *still* don't see how EITHER side would allow Death Knights in. Or warlocks, for that matter, given the recent history of the planet. I think the standard reaction to either would be to run, or 'git a rope'. :lol:
Have you played the starting area quests for DKs? The stories are no more improbable than the Blood Elves joining the Horde (or the Draenei the Alliance, after crashing into and irradiating night elven territory and killing a bunch of them as a side effect).

In short -- a subset of the Death Knights face down the Lich King and throw off his control. They form a new faction, the Knights of the Ebon Blade, take over the necropolis hovering over the Plaguelands, and approach both the Alliance and Horde with a peace treaty.

It does conclude with running through a capital city, unable to talk to any NPCs, and with guards and merchants pelting the DKs with rotten tomatoes. Yeah, in a real campaign the guards should attack, but then there'd be no chance :-)

So, a more-or-less serviceable story to paper over what is, frankly, just something put in for the Cool Factor. At least they attempted to build a story explaining the whole thing :-)
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Fri Jan 22, 2010 1:04 am

Bonetti wrote:The Ashenvale conflict is rooted in the Horde need for wood to build their new city on this (supposedly) safe and isolated continent (and Grom being removed from the temptation of tapping the old demonic blood again by being in an out of the way place). The night elves reacted by trying to exterminate the orcs, and when their first attempt at genocide failed, they enlisted a demigod (Cenarius). Faced with that, Grom submitted to Mannoroth again to have the power to avoid the extinction of his people, slew Cenarius, and now the two sides are pretty much going to be at each others' throats forevermore.
Grom drew first blood in that mission ;) He was spoiling for a fight from the get-go and was all-to-egar for that demon-blood rush.
FWIW, given Thrall's preference for diplomacy, had the Sentinels not started by attempting to kill all the orcs, there's a good chance an arrangement could have been met. Instead, it cost the orcs one of their greatest heroes and the night elves one of their gods.
Thrall was busy at Stonetalon, but I believe he would have had Grom pull back instead of pressing the attack. But regardless, even after their "truce" at Hyjal, the orcs are still trying to slash & burn Ashenvale and attacking elven outposts in WoW.
I think it's pretty clear from the events of the Wrathgate that the plague research from the Royal Apothecary Society is not blessed by Thrall or Sylvanas, and that it's more Scourge/Burning Legion activity being spearheaded by the supposedly subdued Varimathras. The RAS betrays both sides there, and there's evidence that they (unlike most Forsaken) have not actually broken the bonds of the Lich King's control.
Sure they are; there's a whole series of quests involved in making that plague, and they're open to any horde player. The Plague was no great state secret. Thrall & Sylvanas were just surprised that the RAS turned on *them*. And I don't think the RAS are under Lich King control, but rather Burning Crusade control (they wouldn't have been chucking plague at Arthas if they were under his control ;) )
Have you played the starting area quests for DKs? The stories are no more improbable than the Blood Elves joining the Horde (or the Draenei the Alliance, after crashing into and irradiating night elven territory and killing a bunch of them as a side effect).
Started, but never got very far. Of course, the Burning Crusade races are equally silly in that regard, too. I do think they should have had a similar questline for those races to explain their inclusion in the factions; WoW does suffer, IMHO, from a feeling that your character is always a "jonny-come-lately"; you're always arriving in areas LONG after the vangards have arrived and built whole castles and such.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Bonetti » Fri Jan 22, 2010 1:50 am

night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:The Ashenvale conflict is rooted in the Horde need for wood to build their new city on this (supposedly) safe and isolated continent (and Grom being removed from the temptation of tapping the old demonic blood again by being in an out of the way place). The night elves reacted by trying to exterminate the orcs, and when their first attempt at genocide failed, they enlisted a demigod (Cenarius). Faced with that, Grom submitted to Mannoroth again to have the power to avoid the extinction of his people, slew Cenarius, and now the two sides are pretty much going to be at each others' throats forevermore.
Grom drew first blood in that mission ;) He was spoiling for a fight from the get-go and was all-to-egar for that demon-blood rush.
FWIW, given Thrall's preference for diplomacy, had the Sentinels not started by attempting to kill all the orcs, there's a good chance an arrangement could have been met. Instead, it cost the orcs one of their greatest heroes and the night elves one of their gods.
Thrall was busy at Stonetalon, but I believe he would have had Grom pull back instead of pressing the attack. But regardless, even after their "truce" at Hyjal, the orcs are still trying to slash & burn Ashenvale and attacking elven outposts in WoW.
If by "attack" you're referring to the escort quest near the entrance to the Barrens, I seem to recall that's a reaction to poaching the supply lines :-)

Where else should the orcs get lumber in decent quantities? Azshara's relatively barren, it'd be a royal pain to bring it up from Feralas, and nowhere else on the continent has much of a forest. (Well, OK, the rest of the night elf territories, but if they don't open trade, there's no chance of ending the conflict.) Stonetalon's overrun by Venture Company and Grimtotems, and the night elves are protecting what little forest is left there... Or are you saying that the orcs don't have a right to settle on Kalimdor?

You know -- it's STILL the night elves' fault. If they hadn't been so obsessed with the Well of Eternity, the Burning Legion wouldn't have found the world and set in motion the events of the orcs coming to Azeroth in the first place! :-D
night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:I think it's pretty clear from the events of the Wrathgate that the plague research from the Royal Apothecary Society is not blessed by Thrall or Sylvanas, and that it's more Scourge/Burning Legion activity being spearheaded by the supposedly subdued Varimathras. The RAS betrays both sides there, and there's evidence that they (unlike most Forsaken) have not actually broken the bonds of the Lich King's control.
Sure they are; there's a whole series of quests involved in making that plague, and they're open to any horde player. The Plague was no great state secret. Thrall & Sylvanas were just surprised that the RAS turned on *them*. And I don't think the RAS are under Lich King control, but rather Burning Crusade control (they wouldn't have been chucking plague at Arthas if they were under his control ;) )
I read that as Varimathras still served the Legion (or at least its representation in the Lich King), and was working behind their back. "Open to any Horde player" == "limitations of the quest engine and general dearth of quests in release". By that definition, every single Horde player is a gentle, plains-dwelling hunter, since you can do all of the Mulgore quests, too. If you play the story out from the starting areas only (and treat it as such), then only the Forsaken will really see the RAS operating.

Because of the later events and who's running the show, I see the RAS as something Sylvanas started, but the plague (and use thereof) itself as being Varimathras' machinations. Not out of a defense of Sylvanas as a good guy, but based on how the story flows. The fact that they used that to take over Undercity under Varimathras' rule shows they weren't Sylvanas' in the first place.

Speaking of Sylvanas...

Blood Elves coming into the Horde makes more sense than Draenei joining the Alliance. There's a link through Sylvanas, and they're trying to throw off addiction to magical energy (not unlike the orcs resisting the demonic blood). Plus, of course, there's that whole chain of events with Garithos in War3...

Just FYI, I don't take any of it seriously. I'll just as good-naturedly wrangle the other side of the story. I think the fact that a reasonable discussion can be had shows just how "shades of grey" Azeroth really is.
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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:13 pm

night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:everyone knows that the modern Horde is the good guys (and is all about second chances and fixing past mistakes), full of sweetness and light, and the Alliance is a bunch of arrogant, overbearing bad guys!
I've played the Horde quests; they're pretty black-hearted evil bastards. Orcs are on a rampage in Ashenveil (attacking the night elves & destroying their forest & homes without provocation),...
Hmm. So the standard orc behaviour is to: "kill elves and take their stuff"? :lol:

EDIT: "[Warcraft]" tag removed.
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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:22 pm

Bonetti wrote:
night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:everyone knows that the modern Horde is the good guys (and is all about second chances and fixing past mistakes), full of sweetness and light, and the Alliance is a bunch of arrogant, overbearing bad guys!
I've played the Horde quests; they're pretty black-hearted evil bastards. Orcs are on a rampage in Ashenveil (attacking the night elves & destroying their forest & homes without provocation), and Thrall is well aware of the plague the Foresaken are brewing (he just didn't think they'd turn on him so quick). At best Trall is naive and a fool. ;) (I thought Trall was awesome in Warcraft III, much less so in WoW).
The Ashenvale conflict is rooted in the Horde need for wood to build their new city on this (supposedly) safe and isolated continent (and Grom being removed from the temptation of tapping the old demonic blood again by being in an out of the way place). The night elves reacted by trying to exterminate the orcs, and when their first attempt at genocide failed, they enlisted a demigod (Cenarius). Faced with that, Grom submitted to Mannoroth again to have the power to avoid the extinction of his people, slew Cenarius, and now the two sides are pretty much going to be at each others' throats forevermore.

FWIW, given Thrall's preference for diplomacy, had the Sentinels not started by attempting to kill all the orcs, there's a good chance an arrangement could have been met. Instead, it cost the orcs one of their greatest heroes and the night elves one of their gods.

I think it's pretty clear from the events of the Wrathgate that the plague research from the Royal Apothecary Society is not blessed by Thrall or Sylvanas, and that it's more Scourge/Burning Legion activity being spearheaded by the supposedly subdued Varimathras. The RAS betrays both sides there, and there's evidence that they (unlike most Forsaken) have not actually broken the bonds of the Lich King's control.
That looks like a really interesting history, actually. I'll have to dig around WoWWiki to see what is up there about all of this.
Bonetti wrote:
night_druid wrote:Of course, I *still* don't see how EITHER side would allow Death Knights in. Or warlocks, for that matter, given the recent history of the planet. I think the standard reaction to either would be to run, or 'git a rope'. :lol:
Have you played the starting area quests for DKs? The stories are no more improbable than the Blood Elves joining the Horde (or the Draenei the Alliance, after crashing into and irradiating night elven territory and killing a bunch of them as a side effect).

In short -- a subset of the Death Knights face down the Lich King and throw off his control. They form a new faction, the Knights of the Ebon Blade, take over the necropolis hovering over the Plaguelands, and approach both the Alliance and Horde with a peace treaty.

It does conclude with running through a capital city, unable to talk to any NPCs, and with guards and merchants pelting the DKs with rotten tomatoes. Yeah, in a real campaign the guards should attack, but then there'd be no chance :-)

So, a more-or-less serviceable story to paper over what is, frankly, just something put in for the Cool Factor. At least they attempted to build a story explaining the whole thing :-)
Death knights as PCs do seem a bit weird. But then again, the undead PCs of Ghostwalk also seem a bit weird and the arch-lich of Spelljammer doesn't seem to be logical. I think that all of these things are cool, but I also think that you need to have a hook to hang that coolness onto.

From what you seem to be saying, WoW's death knight hook is not quite as good as it should be.

I don't know if they appear in any of the RPG products. IIRC, the Forsaken isn't really covered as a PC race.

EDIT: "[Warcraft]" tag removed.
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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:29 pm

Bonetti wrote:
night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:The Ashenvale conflict is rooted in the Horde need for wood to build their new city on this (supposedly) safe and isolated continent (and Grom being removed from the temptation of tapping the old demonic blood again by being in an out of the way place). The night elves reacted by trying to exterminate the orcs, and when their first attempt at genocide failed, they enlisted a demigod (Cenarius). Faced with that, Grom submitted to Mannoroth again to have the power to avoid the extinction of his people, slew Cenarius, and now the two sides are pretty much going to be at each others' throats forevermore.
Grom drew first blood in that mission ;) He was spoiling for a fight from the get-go and was all-to-egar for that demon-blood rush.
FWIW, given Thrall's preference for diplomacy, had the Sentinels not started by attempting to kill all the orcs, there's a good chance an arrangement could have been met. Instead, it cost the orcs one of their greatest heroes and the night elves one of their gods.
Thrall was busy at Stonetalon, but I believe he would have had Grom pull back instead of pressing the attack. But regardless, even after their "truce" at Hyjal, the orcs are still trying to slash & burn Ashenvale and attacking elven outposts in WoW.
If by "attack" you're referring to the escort quest near the entrance to the Barrens, I seem to recall that's a reaction to poaching the supply lines :-)

Where else should the orcs get lumber in decent quantities? Azshara's relatively barren, it'd be a royal pain to bring it up from Feralas, and nowhere else on the continent has much of a forest. (Well, OK, the rest of the night elf territories, but if they don't open trade, there's no chance of ending the conflict.) Stonetalon's overrun by Venture Company and Grimtotems, and the night elves are protecting what little forest is left there... Or are you saying that the orcs don't have a right to settle on Kalimdor?
The orcs should turn treants into wood. If they kill a treant, chop it up to recover a bit of wood and then leave the body. The magically reanimating nature of WoW will cause the body to vanish and the treant to come back from the dead (presumably after it wombles over from the nearest graveyard). :P ;)

EDIT: "[Warcraft]" tag removed.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:32 pm

Bonetti wrote:Where else should the orcs get lumber in decent quantities? Azshara's relatively barren, it'd be a royal pain to bring it up from Feralas, and nowhere else on the continent has much of a forest. (Well, OK, the rest of the night elf territories, but if they don't open trade, there's no chance of ending the conflict.) Stonetalon's overrun by Venture Company and Grimtotems, and the night elves are protecting what little forest is left there... Or are you saying that the orcs don't have a right to settle on Kalimdor?
Ideally, the orcs would just trade with the elves for it; the night elves have unlimited wood supplies (when wisps are harvesting it). ;) Of course, the orcs have already blown up one world; I'm not sure I'd want them settling anywhere near me :lol:
You know -- it's STILL the night elves' fault. If they hadn't been so obsessed with the Well of Eternity, the Burning Legion wouldn't have found the world and set in motion the events of the orcs coming to Azeroth in the first place! :-D
Heh, that true. The elves of Azeroth are pretty messed up. I've YET to meet a night elf leader who was actually *likable*; they're all pretty much a bunch of jerks and idiots. The only night elf character from WC III that was remotely likable was a low-rank lieutenant of Tiranda, and that's only because she had maybe 5 lines in the whole game (didn't get a CHANCE to hate her). Even a lot of the rank & file from WoW are pretty emo and unlikable.
I read that as Varimathras still served the Legion (or at least its representation in the Lich King), and was working behind their back. "Open to any Horde player" == "limitations of the quest engine and general dearth of quests in release". By that definition, every single Horde player is a gentle, plains-dwelling hunter, since you can do all of the Mulgore quests, too. If you play the story out from the starting areas only (and treat it as such), then only the Forsaken will really see the RAS operating.
Varimathras is pulling the strings of the Scarlet Crusade, IIRC. But I do agree the "plague quests" should have been limited to Foresaken characters. I do remember Thrall mentioning the plague, though, on some quest he gives, so he was well aware of it. On the bright side, they did handle the plague quest line MUCH better than the Missing Diplomat quest chain <shakes fist in rage..."I AM NOT A TOURIST!!!">
Because of the later events and who's running the show, I see the RAS as something Sylvanas started, but the plague (and use thereof) itself as being Varimathras' machinations. Not out of a defense of Sylvanas as a good guy, but based on how the story flows. The fact that they used that to take over Undercity under Varimathras' rule shows they weren't Sylvanas' in the first place.
Sylvanas is so obsessed with revenge on the Lich King that I don't think she really cared what the RAS did until they stabbed her in the back.
Blood Elves coming into the Horde makes more sense than Draenei joining the Alliance. There's a link through Sylvanas, and they're trying to throw off addiction to magical energy (not unlike the orcs resisting the demonic blood). Plus, of course, there's that whole chain of events with Garithos in War3...
Oh, agreed. The Draenei sorta came out of left field (and completely rewrote WC history in the process, to the point Blizzard had to come out and say "we, um, f'd up on the lore there"). Blood elves...are bizarre. There seems a huge disconnect in their recent history; the elves at Silverymoon/Ghostlands can't wait to join Kael in Outlands, but the elves in Outlands *hate* Kael? Wait, didn't they go to Outland because their homeland was in ruins, and then came back to reclaim it? I think they sorta rushed on both races and really didn't explain things too well.
Just FYI, I don't take any of it seriously. I'll just as good-naturedly wrangle the other side of the story. I think the fact that a reasonable discussion can be had shows just how "shades of grey" Azeroth really is.
Me neither. :D All fun & games.

From my playing of WoW, it seems that there are very few "likable" factions; most of the characters are jerks in one way or the other, on both sides. Orcs strike me as being pretty danged evil, but they just want to be in charge instead of taking orders ;) Forsaken are outright insane; trolls & tauren seem more "just along for the ride". The Lords of Stormwind are selfish jerks, and the night elf are all emo and cold at the same time. Dwarves & gnomes seem the only ones who are genuinely likable.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Fri Jan 22, 2010 12:40 pm

Big Mac wrote:Death knights as PCs do seem a bit weird. But then again, the undead PCs of Ghostwalk also seem a bit weird and the arch-lich of Spelljammer doesn't seem to be logical. I think that all of these things are cool, but I also think that you need to have a hook to hang that coolness onto.
Ah, but in Azeroth, THE villian is the undead Sourge, lead by the Lich King. Death Knights are his shock troops. Especially for Alliance, many of whom are refugees from Lorderon (which was wiped out by the Sourge) to welcome Death Knights into their ranks? Not sure either side would risk Death Knights being what they claim to be, instead of spies & assassins of the Lich King. I wouldn't, that's certain! ;)
I don't know if they appear in any of the RPG products. IIRC, the Forsaken isn't really covered as a PC race.
Forsaken are quasi-undead. They're rotting corpses, but still have to eat & breath to survive.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by dulsi » Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:01 pm

Big Mac wrote:From what you seem to be saying, WoW's death knight hook is not quite as good as it should be.

I don't know if they appear in any of the RPG products. IIRC, the Forsaken isn't really covered as a PC race.
Don't know about death nights but the Forsaken are in the WoW RPG book. They might not have been in the original Warcraft RPG book but the World of Warcraft revamp has them.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:04 pm

dulsi wrote:
Big Mac wrote:From what you seem to be saying, WoW's death knight hook is not quite as good as it should be.

I don't know if they appear in any of the RPG products. IIRC, the Forsaken isn't really covered as a PC race.
Don't know about death nights but the Forsaken are in the WoW RPG book. They might not have been in the original Warcraft RPG book but the World of Warcraft revamp has them.
The original did not, IIRC. It came out not long after WoW was released, and wasn't very complete. And being a d20 product, it suffered from wide borders and big fonts. :x
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Bonetti » Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:23 pm

night_druid wrote:
Bonetti wrote:I read that as Varimathras still served the Legion (or at least its representation in the Lich King), and was working behind their back. "Open to any Horde player" == "limitations of the quest engine and general dearth of quests in release". By that definition, every single Horde player is a gentle, plains-dwelling hunter, since you can do all of the Mulgore quests, too. If you play the story out from the starting areas only (and treat it as such), then only the Forsaken will really see the RAS operating.
Varimathras is pulling the strings of the Scarlet Crusade, IIRC. But I do agree the "plague quests" should have been limited to Foresaken characters. I do remember Thrall mentioning the plague, though, on some quest he gives, so he was well aware of it. On the bright side, they did handle the plague quest line MUCH better than the Missing Diplomat quest chain <shakes fist in rage..."I AM NOT A TOURIST!!!">
Yeah. They really fumbled the Missing Diplomat stuff.

You're thinking of his brother, though. There were three dreadlords (brothers) who were in charge of the scourge forces while Archimonde was mucking around in Kalimdor.

Balnazzar and Detheroc were believed killed, and Varimathras entered the service of Sylvanas (and is now an advisor next to her -- well, until you complete Wrathgate, which phases him out during the invasion).

Balnazzar, it turns out, faked his own death and disguised himself as the leader (and founder) of the Scarlet Crusade in Stratholme.
night_druid wrote:Dwarves & gnomes seem the only ones who are genuinely likable.
...except that Dwarves keep delving too deep and awakening ancient evils (cf. the Master's Glaive, and the fun with Loken et al. in Northrend, specifically Halls of Stone -- after THAT event I will never like dwarves again!), and the Gnomes lack so much self awareness that they corrupted their own race and irradiated their own city.

And are still cheerful about everything.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Bonetti » Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:26 pm

dulsi wrote:
Big Mac wrote:From what you seem to be saying, WoW's death knight hook is not quite as good as it should be.

I don't know if they appear in any of the RPG products. IIRC, the Forsaken isn't really covered as a PC race.
Don't know about death nights but the Forsaken are in the WoW RPG book. They might not have been in the original Warcraft RPG book but the World of Warcraft revamp has them.
They were reworked from the Undead to the Forsaken when it became clear that there were some balance issues once both factions were able to be played at the same time.

Undead were pretty close to immune to warlocks and priests (immune to fear, sleep, charm), but completely overwhelmed by paladins (alliance only at the time) since they counted as undead. It wasn't an issue until PVP became possible, at which point the "perfect counter" balance issues showed up.

That's why it wasn't in the Warcraft RPG, it came out of the MMO.
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Re: [Warcraft] Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by night_druid » Fri Jan 22, 2010 6:32 pm

Bonetti wrote:Yeah. They really fumbled the Missing Diplomat stuff.
Still fills me with rage when I think about it. I really wish they would have left well enough alone instead of that garbage :(

Balnazzar, it turns out, faked his own death and disguised himself as the leader (and founder) of the Scarlet Crusade in Stratholme.
Ah, that's right; I haven't delved Strat yet. Hit 80 on the blood elf warlock and lost all interest, started over with a human pally (just about to hit 78).
...except that Dwarves keep delving too deep and awakening ancient evils (cf. the Master's Glaive, and the fun with Loken et al. in Northrend, specifically Halls of Stone -- after THAT event I will never like dwarves again!), and the Gnomes lack so much self awareness that they corrupted their own race and irradiated their own city.
Haven't gotten to those quest lines yet! ;) Still finishing off Dragonblight (just finished killing off the mammoth-centaur leaders...that actually was fun, because it was remotely challenging when I soloed them!) and starting up Basin (I refuse to do Basin without a flying mount; its too painful otherwise). Trying to hit Exhaulted with the walrus guys to get that awesome fishing pole, but I've run out non-daily quests, so progress is slow. :( Then its off to Hills & the troll city, and then finally Peaks & Icecrown (not sure I want to try to tackle those without getting the gear from the lower level zones).
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Re: Has anyone ever played the World of Warcraft RPG?

Post by Big Mac » Sat Jan 23, 2010 5:48 pm

night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:Death knights as PCs do seem a bit weird. But then again, the undead PCs of Ghostwalk also seem a bit weird and the arch-lich of Spelljammer doesn't seem to be logical. I think that all of these things are cool, but I also think that you need to have a hook to hang that coolness onto.
Ah, but in Azeroth, THE villian is the undead Sourge, lead by the Lich King. Death Knights are his shock troops. Especially for Alliance, many of whom are refugees from Lorderon (which was wiped out by the Sourge) to welcome Death Knights into their ranks? Not sure either side would risk Death Knights being what they claim to be, instead of spies & assassins of the Lich King. I wouldn't, that's certain! ;)
I suppose that is rather similar to hundreds of drow suddenly bursting out from Toril's Underdark, telling the locals that they are worshippers of Elistraee and asking to work for the local king.

One or two death knights makes sense, but making them a PC option makes the number limitless.
night_druid wrote:
Big Mac wrote:I don't know if they appear in any of the RPG products. IIRC, the Forsaken isn't really covered as a PC race.
Forsaken are quasi-undead. They're rotting corpses, but still have to eat & breath to survive.
Thanks for the correction.

And thanks to everyone for the behind the scenes information on the history of the Forsaken.

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