Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Garrison Mission: Gather all the foods!

One of my favorite aspects of any game is the variety of virtual food. Yet, disturbingly, the only forms of sustenance I've been able to find in the new Draenor so far are war rations of the Iron Horde. Since I'm not about to spend an entire expansion living off of tasteless biscuits scavenged from the bodies of dead orcs, I've decided to take some precautionary measures and stockpile my garrison with some of my favorite foods from the old/classic/currently-timelined world.

First and foremost, it's important to have an ample supply of hydrating liquids. I've always been a fan of Moonberry Juice seeing as how it's one of the few drinks available that isn't booze or possibly contaminated medieval puddle water, and I'll be filling packing crates with ginseng and Honeymint Tea since tea is required for living. As for food, I, of course, am partial to vegetarian options like Pine Nut Bread, Savory Snowplums, Carrot Cupcakes, and the oddly delicious Lyribread that the Ethereals of Outland claim are constituted from pure energy and somehow ended up like rye. Buying mass quantities of pantry goods and moving them across parallel universes may seem impractical, and yes, in my travels through Pandaria, I've learned how to make plenty of sophisticated and complex dishes like Sauteed Carrots and Seasoned Pomfruit Slices. However, I'm not my garrison's private chef, and I'd rather eat increasingly stale Pine Nut Bread every day than peel carrots for what is supposed to be my personal staff.

On the other hand, I could just forgo all of this work, make friends with a mage, and live off an endless supply of strudel and cinnamon buns. Good thing demonic spellwork burns so many calories.


Monday, July 21, 2014

Yea, I talk to my voidwalker. So what?

I finally got my beta invite this weekend, which means that I made a new friend.

He seems like a cool guy.

So far, I haven't gleaned much about his personality, but I hope that Demonic Servitude gains me a new companion, and I don't just mean in combat. Right now, my voidwalker is the only demon with whom I can have worthwhile conversation and isn't preoccupied with sadomasochistic bondage or stealing silverware from Black Temple. My felguard just wants to cleave things in half, felhunters can't really talk, and I'm pretty sure my observer thinks I'm a moron, which is rich for someone who runs into battle gurgling like a murloc.

As much as I love Barkath, it'll be nice to get to know a new demon with a different nature. I know doomguards can seem kind of cocky with all of their "Who dares summon me?!," but what can I learn about mine when, rather than merely calling him for one minute in the middle of a fight, I actually spend time with him just hanging out in town or working together to complete quests. We can explore new worlds, defeat powerful enemies, and then, as the sun sets in Shadowmoon Valley, discuss over tea how we each felt about our day in Draenor.

Because I don't think an infernal can hold a tea cup.


Sunday, July 13, 2014

If only getting a teaching job was this simple.

I guess it is true what people say; English majors end up teaching.

School is in session, bitch!
After a year and a half, I finally possess the perfect warlock title, Darkmaster Ayaliss. Unfortunately, since I did kill the previous schoolmaster of Scholomance, it's looking like I have some new responsibilities.

Teaching Classes

So... I'm not quite sure what I'm supposed to be teaching you guys. Gandling didn't exactly leave me a lesson plan before I Shadowburned his face. I'm assuming the curriculum had a lot to do with necromancy, but I'm not really into undead things, so we'll just start from the beginning of Demonology for Dummies and then move onto Practical Uses of Souls later in the semester. Advanced courses in Summoning Theory will also be available to gifted students interested in studying abroad in the Twisting Nether.

Hiring Staff

Now that I'm in charge of this institution, I need to make sure that the meat shields... I mean... the esteemed members of my staff are capable of defending the inner rooms where the innocent students, precious books, and, of course, I reside. Looking at your resume, you already seem more promising than the idiots who were protecting this area before and thought that differently dressed mirror images would fool people. Let me show you to the office that you'll now be guarding with your life.

Administrative Busywork

To-Do List: 1. File budget paperwork on annual tuition paid vs. student lifespan. 2. Attend board meeting to discuss possible creation of athletics department. (Tentative suggestions for team names: Fighting Felguards, Valiant Voidwalkers, Impotent Imps) 3. Organize fundraiser to finance renovation of school exterior and the conversion of Alexi Barov's room into a personal sauna. 4. Order more paper clips.

Getting Raided

It's like a damn PvP server in here. I'm not using my Soulstone until they leave.


Thursday, July 3, 2014

If real life were a video game, I'd still be broke.

While I'm not quite the 1% currency-wise in any of the games that I play, I'd say that compared to the Rockefellers bidding max on BMAH mounts and the few people I know who wouldn't be able to raid if their guilds weren't paying for repairs, I'm pretty middle-class. That's not to say "middle class" in a video game translates to "middle class" IRL, for it's so much easier to make money in WoW that not being ridiculously wealthy in it is actually a failure. Honestly, even with as much gold as I have, translated into the real world, I would be just as upper-middle-lower-class as I am in real life, and my in-game tactics for making money are just as inadequate as they are outside.

Unsurprisingly, the money-making lessons one can glean from gaming are pretty analogous to what we see outside of it. Sure, there's meritocracy, working hard so one can save and eventually become rich, both feasible and tantalizing mythical in either environment, for then there are the real methods of making gold/Simoleans/Neopoints/money en masse: stealing, cheating, wage slavery, etc. As much gold as one has, it's nothing compared to what Chinese farmers make teleporting to mining nodes and paying teenagers a few dollars a day to spam in trade. Nothing makes more Neopoints than running an auto-buying program, nothing is as quick and easy to earn Simoleans as good old "motherlode," and there's nothing that makes more money in the real world than organized crime, drug trafficking, and sex slavery.

It's a rather negative but realistic sentiment. I'm not promoting the use of bots nor suggesting that everyone smuggle heroin. In fact, the consequences of subversive activity can be just as harsh in-game when one equates the potential real life losses (assets, freedom, life) to the punishments for cheating (inventory, characters, life-long ban), and many people do equate them. However, it doesn't stop tons of players every day from taking those risks to get ahead, accumulate wealth, or pull themselves out of destitute situations, because for better or worse, in-game societies are a reflection of the ones in which we actually live and are full of the same stratification, inflation, and artificial prestige-laden consumerism that we experience in real life.