A Theramore RP-PvP Encounter with Horde Emissary, Ravenwing, Theramore Regiment and Kul Tiras

The Friday before the launch of Mists of Pandaria, I had the privilege of attending a special RP-PvP event, created by the members of Horde Emissary (H), Ravenwing (H), Theramore Regiment (A) and Kul Tiras (A) on our Moon Guard server.

As the finale to a month-long campaign started by Horde Emissary and Theramore Regiment, the members decided to roleplay a battle in which the Horde, freshly successful in bombing Theramore, are occupying Northwatch Hold, and face Alliance troops intent on reclaiming the area.

I think this was a GREAT way to take advantage of the new lore, create roleplay connections between factions and enjoy some pvp out in the fresh air of the real world (of Azeroth). I look forward to sharing my experience observing and participating (a tiny bit) in this event…

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A rose by any other name…


So, for a long time, I’ve known that there is a problem with Goldslipper.  No, it’s not that she’s riding a pink mount and hanging out by the mailbox too much.  It’s her name.  Within several days of joining Moon Guard (nearly four years ago), I got a number of comments from random players.  They all went along the lines of “nice rp name, idiot”.

No self-respecting elf would ever name their child Goldslipper.  The fact that her name was a tribute to my very first ever avatar, Samantha Goldslipper of Pirates of the Caribbean Online, a successful, fiesty pirate lass, was of no meaning to these fantasy rp folks.  I have a stupid name for my character.

I’ve considered the idea of just changing her name to a classic Blood Elf name.  I’ve researched elven name sites, looking for just the right one, and have found some that might work.  The issue I have, though, is that well, Gold is Gold.  She, and her experiences, have all been so immersed in Goldslipper’ism, that it’s impossible to imagine her NOT being Gold.  Everyone calls me Gold, or Goldy, or Goldie, and it might hard for both me, and my friends, to adjust.  So, a new idea has emerged.

I will write a story around her name, to justify it.

I have the seed of a story, and I am running it by a few friends to see what they think, and there are some details I need to work out, but I am really excited about putting a background together for Gold.  I think, in a way, it might be THE part of rp that I am interested in, more than actually engaging in conversations as a character.  I’m not sure that part of it is for me, really.  I tend to be more of a contemplative type and like to develop my ideas.  Not so good on the spur of the moment.  Although, perhaps with a background story, and one of those rp mods, I’ll get a little chance to exercise those skills and see if it is fun.

I look forward to posting an intro to her story soon!

Funeral…Funereal…Funreal?

This is a really old draft post that I had saved, and after looking it over, it seems ready to go.  Hopefully I didn’t miss any typos or bad grammar 🙂

This weekend, one of our non-guild friends was hanging out in vent and mentioned that he was going to have an IC funeral for his orc DK.  The story went that his orc was part of the Frostwolf Clan, came into contact with another orc from the Bonechewer Clan, and there was some nastiness. When he finally convinced his guild leader that they should be allowed to fight, so that he could do the honorable orc thing, he ended up dying in battle, which is the only way to die, for a proper orc, apparently.

A funeral?  Perfect!  It was the ideal next RP event for me to witness, after the wedding.  I immediately searched through my bags for something all black to wear, and not finding anything…..too many miscellaneous relics, leftover quest items, snowballs, I really need to get in there and organize some things…..decided that my normal battle-gear would be appropriate to honor a fallen warrior.  You agree, right?  Oh goodness, where is the Dear Abby of Azeroth, I really could have used her at the moment….

At the time of the event, apparently attendance was a little scant, so I told my friend that I would ask around.  I checked in with those who were online, and got mostly no’s.  Several people were committed to ICC runs, several just not interested in RP.  It was explained to me that RP funerals, in a game where characters have the ability to resurrect, just aren’t that popular.  One of my friends helped recruit a little bit in trade, and I think we got a few attendees based on his mention, which was nice.  All were polite, which was great.  You never know what might happen when you go into trade looking for folks, I suppose…

We did get a small, yet decent-sized group together and it turned out to be a pleasant RP event for me.  We met in Nagrand, found a quiet little pvp-free spot, and began the initial part of the ceremony.  The shaman (alt to the DK) said some nice things about the DK, and then offered up the chance for the attendees to contribute their thoughts.  Having had this particular DK lead me through my first successful run of regular HoR, so I was able to say with honesty, that he had been there in one of the greatest battles in my fighting career to date, and would be sorely missed.

The shaman then indicated that we would be proceeding to the ancient burial grounds, where the DK’s body would be burned on a pyre, per orcish tradition.  Some of the female characters chose to stay back and process their grief without seeing the body.  My guildies, one of the DK’s guildies and the shaman rode on over to the burial grounds, where the shaman said some more words, and we watched as the fire claimed the physical remnants of the former DK.

The death, or possible death of a character, is something that I’ve now run into a couple of times in the game.  I have a friend with a DK who, IC, is still so guilt-ridden by his actions, that he thinks that once he kills the Lich King, he might take his own life.  It makes me wonder, do most roleplayers have some outline for the potential death of their character?  How it would happen, when, where…..all the little details worked out?

I have to giggle thinking of Goldslipper’s potential death…….it would likely be a scenario where she lost control of her mount and fell off of a cliff, or she accidentally enraged a huge number of enemies and was stomped to bits, or exploded with magical attack spells, or filled with arrows like some cartoon character; or perhaps, she was just standing lost in thought, and a murloc or some other humorous creature got her from behind.  Those are reflections of the spacey way that I play the game sometimes, and could possibly be woven into her story.

During the recruiting of possible attendees for the funeral, one of my buddies was talking about funerals in general, and said that when he dies irl, he has requested that his family host a “funreal,” although he’s not sure if they will do it, because they think that all of the guests will think it is a typo.  According to his description, it sounds like a big party in celebration of the life of the deceased, balloon animals included.  Pretty fun, I think.

In a separate conversation, another friend and I were discussing the existence (or not) of God, demons and angels, which ties into what happens to us after we die.  At my age, it’s probably rare to not have all of that worked out, but, personally I still am not clear on what exactly happens to us after death, although at the moment, I am leaning toward thinking that we suffer the exact same fate as any mosquito, daisy or other living creature……simple disintegration into the ground over time.  Why would it be any different for humans? Just because we think, should we get a better deal after death?  Like Goldslipper’s storyline, though, the thinking there is a work in progress, waiting for a break between dog walks, runs to the neighborhood pool and cooking, cleaning, etc. 🙂

I love that the game, and the people that I interact with in it, occasionally stimulate these kinds of thoughts and conversations.  Perhaps it’s the epic nature of the stories and the fantasy/mythological nature of the characters that allows for some of the more profound topics to occasionally surface.  Not that it’s always like that, mind you…..the other day, I found myself talking with a friend about him ninja’ing the kitchen for something to eat, and then the conversation turned to cereal choices…. I said that Cinnamon Toast Crunch is the cereal of choice at our house, he was opting for Frosted Flakes.

After the cremation of our friend’s DK, most of us had to get going.  One guildie had to hit the gym, the other needed to get back to leveling his 5th toon to 80, I needed to go help the hubby with dinner on the grill.  Epic thoughts tucked away, it was time to head back to real life.

Waking up with RP on the brain…..

I have discussed in earlier posts how I am not an RP’er yet, but that I am an interested onlooker, waiting for the right moment to open the door to that particular shop of wonders.

That moment might be sooner than I thought.

I woke up one recent morning with a storyline on my mind. I think it was after reading some blog post about raid buffing and how it really helps to have a beast mastery hunter in the group. Somehow, that little nugget of information stuck in my head and became a wisp of a storyline. I saw a young male elf in Ghostlands, no more than a toddler, really, who was somehow able to command the spiders, lions and bats with his unique powers. I turned his story over and over in my mind, replaying it, imagining his mother’s reaction to him arriving home from playtime in the woods with a trail of creatures following after him.  I imagined the tiny woodland inhabitants he might keep as pets in his pockets, to be found on laundry day…..beetles, grubs, rats, perhaps even a box of smaller spiders to play with, all things that are so appealing to a mother-elf. I then leapt forward to a day when he might command a large army of loyal and ferocious beasts to bring down enormous enemy forces.

It was such a creative, mind-opening experience.

Then……one of my friends in the game happened to suggest that he would like to start a new character, so that he will have a warrior available when Cataclysm comes out. He wondered if I might want to level a character up alongside of his, and when I mentioned that I had a low-level priest, he said that it would be a good pairing. I inquired if there would be any Rpeez, and he said that there might. Gasp! Could it be time?!!!

So, we have, on and off, been discussing the background of the characters very lightly, and I have started to catch up on my lore in my little spare bits of time.

I have to say, now I get it. I am finding myself absorbed with understanding these two characters, what their backgrounds are, why they might possibly be involved in helping each other, and what their paths might be. The history is now relevant, the need for them to have a purpose now makes understanding the lore absolutely critical (if my character is a priestess, then what KIND of priestess, and how does priestesses think, act, speak…)  I wonder what they might be feeling emotionally or physically. He is going to be starting out as a Wretched, at least for a period of time, which could make it interesting (certainly hilarious images entered my head, of course, of my character being his crack-whore trying to find mana-crystals for his addiction until she can figure out a way to help him become cured of his transformed state).

Can you tell that this is very exciting for me?  The door to the RP world has creaked open just a teeny tiny little bit, and the light is shining through, luring me inside, with a nearly unavoidable pull…….

Joyous Occasion

In WoW, there are experiences that are so unique that they will be etched into your memory.  For us, definitely the first character creation video counts as one. Nothing will match how our jaws dropped as we watched the sweeping views of the graphic environment Blizzard had created. We were in total awe. The first flight on a windrider was unbelievable too. Riding from Orgrimmar to Thunder Bluff, I think, passing over dinosaurs and other creatures, mouth open; if I had control over the windrider, there would have been a huge gapers delay in traffic from Org to TB. The first instance definitely qualifies; feeling lost in RFC, wondering how many more slimy monsters there were left to battle, and if we would make it through, dying constantly despite the efforts of my big fuzzy higher-level tauren friend. For more experienced players, I’m sure there are all kinds of special experiences, and for many, the ultimate memorable moment will be the first time they slay the Lich King.

Recently, I was given the opportunity to participate in a roleplay event that will be added to my personal collection of special moments.

I was saying hello to a friend of mine, one who I’ve known since very early in my time on Moon Guard. As backstory, I’d followed him around in Warsong Gulch, healing him while he carried the flag, one of my very first days on the realm. After we were in the BG a few times, I chatted a little bit with him, and then afterward, added him to my friends list. Over the months, I’ve heard updates on his RP, guild, ventures in PvP, and a little bit about his girlfriend’s broken arm during the summer.

We hadn’t chatted a ton recently, just hellos and goodbyes, when I inquired if he might be interested in a Sunwell Plateau run, and he said that he couldn’t, because he would be getting married ICly at that time.

Married!  How incredibly exciting! I, of course, asked if I could observe the wedding (not being an actual RPer myself), and he said he’d check with the bride. Sure enough, “Joyous Occasion” soon showed up on my calendar.

There is an entire blog post that could be written about the process of PREPARING for an RP wedding, of course. The outfit selection, the consideration of whether it would be good to have a companion for the event, the worry over whether I would know what to do, and when. In the end, after hours of poring over the auction house for possible options (well, my daughters did most of the poring, they are seasoned AH shoppers), my date (a dear guildie/friend), daughters and I decided that my Lovely Blue Dress would do just fine, and that bare feet would probably be the way to go, since there were no pretty shoes in the AH (and I did even inquire in trade about whether there were any beautiful dress shoes for female characters). My date needed a few enhancements to his outfit, and so I bought him a black shirt and some black dress shoes, and we were set outfit-wise.

I can honestly say, that as the event approached, I had butterflies in my stomach. We were to be summoned to the Isle of Quel’Danas in raid party. Would I know anyone there? What would it be like? What would the ceremony be like? My friend had indicated that they’d spent nearly a month in the planning, so I presumed it would be very special.

It was.

From start to finish, the event unfolded in a way that was both true to lore, but also so realistic feeling, creating a sort of golden bubble of warmth and happiness around all who attended. This might sound a bit over the top, but it is the only way that I can describe it. It had that REAL feeling that you experience when you go to a wedding where you care deeply about the bride and groom, and are genuinely happy to see them united in a way that they have created for themselves. True joy.

The RP began with the guests arranging themselves around the lawn near the archway where the couple would conduct their ceremony. As my companion and I strolled near the lake, the personalities began to emerge, while pre-ceremony small talk commenced. The couple with a small child, bantering back and forth, occupying him, shifting him from one parent to the other, doting yet practical; the war-weary orc, with his worg-pup, whom he instructed about the goings-on; the gallant best friend, suave, handsome, self-assured, still single, but likely to be following in his friend’s footsteps soon;  the younger Blood Knight, looking up to his hero, gushing with praise-filled exclamations; the priestess and her friend, with a unique, almost sister-like relationship, commenting in off-handed ways to each other; a more realistic collection of guests could not have been scripted.

Just before the couple arrived for the ceremony, we were all requested to approach the archway, and informed that the raid would be eliminated to avoid unnecessary chat. We drew close, gathering around the arch, and waited for the ceremony to begin.

The young couple arrived, along with the priestess, and began a touching, well thought-out ceremony that, by the end, had me reaching for the sleeve of my companion’s shirt in-game, and the tissues, in real life. The priestess introduced the bride and the groom, explaining that while they were an unlikely match (a Blood Knight and a Ranger), they were here today to express their love and be joined in a life together.

The ceremony included all the nuances of a real wedding. Glances, touches, not a single opportunity for emotional expression was missed, in my opinion. Even the ceremonial elements had clearly been given a fair amount of thought. The bride and groom had their hands bound together with a blue cloth for a portion of the ceremony, to symbolize their union. They gave each other gifts which were family heirlooms, symbolizing the joining and continuation of their families, and respect for their elders. The vows, which were incredibly touching, invoked the feeling of connection that was developed over decades of joy AND hardships between the couple, and their inability to imagine a life without one another. Before the wedding, I did not know how creative my friend might be in RP, and was happy to see that he is very creative, open and free with his emotions. I had met his bride, perhaps once in a brief conversation at a mailbox in Shattrath one night, and so I didn’t know her at all. During the wedding event, she was charming, sweet and gracious, all characteristics becoming to a bride.  After the wedding, my conversations with her have convinced me that she is all of those things regularly, not just on wedding day.

As the ceremony came to a close, and the couple kissed each other tenderly, the guests began to cheer and celebrate, and fireworks, drinks and a Delicious Chocolate Cake were presented for the group to enjoy.

As I left, so that I could do a few things before needing to log out, I uttered my first and only statement during the event, wishing the couple well and thanking them for letting me participate in such a beautiful expression of love and joy.

It is almost impossible to capture the feeling of this event in words. It is a warmth, an aura that can surround a situation. It made this experience so very special, to both myself AND to my daughters, who were watching along with me and having me read the entire ceremony to them, some portions repeatedly. My 5yo son was floating in and out of the picture, occasionally shouting out “have they gotten to the kissy-kissy part yet???”  As we shut down the computer, we all agreed that it was an amazing experience, one of the best things we’d ever seen in the game.

It was several weeks before I understood the full sweetness of the event. I’d been fairly busy with real life, just squeezing in dailies here and there, and starting to get into the holiday achievement season, when I ran into my friend and his bride, on separate occasions. I mentioned to both of them that I was drafting up a blog post, and wondered if it would be okay with them if I did so. Both of them were encouraging, looking forward to reading it.

I remembered at one point my friend had mentioned that he played WoW with his girlfriend, and so I asked him if the wedding had been with her. Yes, in fact, it was her. He then explained to me that they had met, IC, ON THE GAME, and after some OOC conversations, they had decided to get to know each other in real life. Things had progressed, and now they are dating; he’d just flown to visit her several weeks ago. He was disappointed he couldn’t be with her for Valentine’s Day, but they’d been together and it had been great.

Priceless, another beautiful aspect to the story of the RP wedding….it makes me want to go get the tissues again, and snuggle on the sofa with the girls, watching The Princess Bride.

Thank you again, my friends, may you live in wedded bliss for the duration of your elven lives, AND, I look forward to the baby shower, hopefully soon!