Sunday, November 30, 2014

IRL News Day: Avia rhymes with Moldavia is moving to Cali!

Guess what, everyone? I'm moving! In a few weeks, I will be leaving Myrtle Beach and relocating to the Los Angeles area. Not quite the NYC that I miss every day, but at least it's not the middle of nowhere in South Carolina. I'm sure many people would argue that Myrtle Beach, as a major city, is not quite the "middle of nowhere." However, as someone who has spent most of her adult life in a metropolis, any place that requires a driver's license to navigate it might as well be the tiniest island in an archipelago where all of the stores, cultural centers, and people are only accessible by a boat that I'm not allowed to operate. Everyone with a boat gets to go places and have fun, and I could get a boat, but I'm smart enough to know that if I learned to ride one and then moved off the archipelago like I am now, I would just end up with a useless boating license. Look who wins at life now. The answer is me.

Home is where your mission table is.

Speaking of relocation, while Lunarfall is essentially a bachelor pad of a fortress with a single hero in charge of his/her own interior design, its location within Draenor and role as a central base has made it a zone that has the feeling of home for players. Compared to Sunsong Ranch, the sheer expanse of the garrison is so immersive that it feels like a true living space where I can relax, hang out with my followers, invite people over to selfishly take advantage of my property, and return at the end of the day without feeling like I'm a vagrant putting up for the night in the Stormwind City inn. And yet, it's not entirely cozy because, while it is my own personal house, it's also located in a heavily-populated area, and Trade chat keeps butting itself into my goddamn living room.

With the decentralization of players away from major cities and a shift towards sitting alone in our garrisons, it only makes sense to link Lunarfall/Frostwall with Trade chat access, but I sure as hell already unlinked mine. With my history of strategically hanging out in spots just outside of the range of trolls and closed-minded morons, I don't need to see the constant stream of people arguing about politics, accusing each other of being either children or middle-aged basement dwellers, and the occasional person actually selling something while I'm just trying to have coffee with Ziri'ak in my inn. At the same time, I'm preparing to leave my barren but admittedly quiet island in Myrtle Beach to move back to civilization once more. As thrilled as I am to have access to a metropolitan area again, there are people out there, and over the past year, I had become rather adept at avoiding them. It seems Blizzcon was a proving ground for my social skills, and I'll have to start employing them more liberally soon enough in an environment where /ignore doesn't always provide the perfect solution.

I kind of insulted Myrtle Beach multiple times in this post, and to any South Carolinians reading this, I'm kind of sorry. <3


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

I'm not actually going to stream.

This week, I had the chance to participate in a webshow's panel about the influence of virtual worlds on the real world. That is... until they actually spoke to me and realized that I interview horribly and wouldn't work in a broadcasted discussion, but hey, that's why I'm a writer. >_< However, in the preparation process that turned out to be futile, I actually set up a webcam that had previously been spending a year gathering dust in a corner of my bedroom. This opens up the possibility of facecam streaming for your favorite female azn warlock with a voidwalker tattoo. Sure, that's a lot of qualifiers, but I wanted to be accurate for everyone, and it'd be pretty sad if I was someone's second favorite female azn warlock with a voidwalker tattoo who eats only plants and buys her clothes from the kids section of Old Navy.

The Avia Show?

Of course, a live feed of someone's raidingbitchface isn't required to stream, but it seems to be an unspoken given nowadays to show the audience who it's watching regardless of the actual relevance to gameplay. Perhaps it's so I can see who exactly is asking me to send money to their PayPal in exchange for jumping jacks or gratuitous taco eating (no offense to any of those hustles), but I definitely only enjoy facecams occasionally. It's nice if they talk to their viewers rather than just sitting silently while they play. It's also enjoyable if they explain what going on in a Let's Play style. Then again, if the streamer is attractive, I don't really care if s/he is even playing a game.

Which raises the question of what kind of streamer I would be if I actually chose to employ my newly dusted off camera. As a recently rejected webcaster, I highly doubt that I would excel in any of the social aspects that popular streamers employ to engage with their audience. If I'm just going to type back in chat instead of talking, there would be no point in a webcam. If I'm not going to put on a scripted show like my guildie at FinalBossTV, there would be no point in a webcam. If I'm not going to show my boobs, there would be no point in a webcam. Most likely, I'd end up being like one of the many streamers that I see and then wonder what the point even is of having them sit there and distract me from watching the informational part of the screen where the game is actually being played.

Maybe I'll just throw this thing back into its corner for another year or forever.


Wednesday, November 12, 2014

RP Your Life! was live on the floor of Blizzcon 2014 and reported nothing.

In previous years, I have covered Blizzcon and reported its breaking WoW news with the same fervent zeal associated with KPop fansites and quasi-celebrities of Twitter. Unfortunately, this year's Blizzcon was all about Overwatch, and the news for WoW was sparse, bordering on nonexistent. However, that doesn't mean I didn't learn anything, for the two convention days and the week of guild "bonding activities" surrounding them were quite eye-opening. Let me chronicle here the important life lessons I gleaned from my vacation, from which I spent the past two days recovering.

Traveling as a group in matching T-shirts is both awesome and embarrassing. I admit I couldn't help but feel like a total badass rolling into Blizzcon in a crew of thirty proud nerds representing our guild. It made me feel like I finally understood the meaning of camaraderie. There was a sense that we all belonged to something that transcended a mere collection of individual relationships. We were a team, and I loved being a part of it. That is... until we started yelling things like "FIREBALL!" and "BE QUIET, PIZZA!" in the middle of the convention center, and I realized there was no way to pretend I didn't know them when I was wearing the exact same shirt.

If you give people an option to "collect them all," then they will stand on line for two hours to do exactly that. Even I ended up getting suckered into waiting in that line full of people with way too much expendable income just so I could buy a limited edition pin for a friend who I haven't seen in years. Apparently a gold-colored Blizzcon exclusive Murky pin is serious enough business to call in a favor from a random Facebook acquaintance. Write that down for the next edition of Emily Post's Etiquette.

The following things and alcohol do not mix: cinnamon flavor, hot tubs, hunters who try to eat throw pillows when they're drunk, tiny Asian girls named Avia who suck at both of the tasks involved in Flip Cup, and cinnamon flavor. Yes, I wrote that last one twice on purpose because I want to know who decided that shit was a good idea. It tasted like a Christmas tree on fire.

If you put an LED candle into a drunkenly passed out man's hand, he'll eventually wake up and try to take a sip from it.

See you guys on the other side of the expansion.