Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Lunk: A New Hero for Azeroth’s Carebears

Every WoW player has experienced the moment of clarity at least once. It’s the one time out of a few thousand that you’re killing mobs for a quest when you finally stop and wonder... Why am I always being called on to commit mass murder on everything from wolves to fellow humanoids to ghosts just idly haunting an area no one cares about anyway? By the time the train of thought arrives at wondering what’s the point of all this bloodshed, it becomes apparent that almost every quest mob you’ve ever run into wants you to kill something or other, and if downing a raid boss is acceptable (which it is because they drop LOOT!), then it should be ok to kill everything else in the game. After all, no one wants to be a hypocrite, and there’s nothing more obnoxious than meeting a vegetarian who never eats meat ever except every once in a while, he eats bacon.

Now and always, the honor-hungry and battle-loving RPers have had plenty of leadership characters to support with militant fervor. Any of the faction leaders come to mind with their duties to protect their people with whatever armed force is necessary. Even little Mekkatorque took up arms in his attempt to wrest control of Gnomeregan. And of course, there is Alexstrasza, protector of life and warmonger extraordinaire for two expansions. Personally, I’m getting sick of her bossing around the heroes of the Alliance and Horde in her little vendettas against her former pals, but without her, Malygos might have killed us all way before the Cataclysm ever happened.

However, with the new questlines in the Old Kingdoms comes a brand new hero, one that I can get behind though hopefully not literally. As innocent as a child and probably with the same mental capacity, Lunk the ogre shows the player how to do all of the dirty work that various quest givers require without the usual brute force of slaying mobs. Need to steal some Dark Iron wares? Why kill them for it when you can just sit on them? Though the tactics have moved from dispatch to torture, it’s a small step in a world otherwise full of sheer brutality and “no questions asked” mercenaries.

There’s already popular support for Lunk in the WoW community. His alternative methods made Paddlefoot on Wowhead rethink our methods.

“The funny thing is, while he's obviously meant to be humorous and I was laughing out loud at his antics, I found that reading his text did give me pause for a moment. Why am I doing all this killing? Aren't there other ways of solving Azeroth's problems than non-stop, wholesale slaughter?” [1]

Unfortunately, as much as I’d like for Lunk to keep teaching me the ways of the pacifist ogre, Lunk can’t follow us around through all of Azeroth. Any hero who wants to quest and get phat loot in the World of Warcraft has to slay things unapologetically left and right. But I’ll never forget the short amount of time that I spent running around Searing Gorge with Lunk, exploring new ways to get the old things done, and a lot of other players will remember just as fondly how he showed us the power of good intentions.


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