Note: Spoilers for the new Thrall quests
Note: I have some very good friends who play Horde. This isn’t directed at all Horde, just the ones making my life miserable and the ones who apparently work at Blizzard.
Note: This is going to get whiny.
I hopped online last night on Analogue and headed for Hyjal, looking to start the dailies quest chain. I hadn’t really read much about the quests so I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I checked the Heroes’ Call board and then, over at the portals, I found another quest. Someone wanted me to help out Thrall. Sigh. Ok sure, whatever.
Don’t get me wrong, he’s definitely a cool character – but I don’t like Thrall and I really don’t like the idea of him being the big “neutral” character this time around. Maybe it’s racism to prefer Tirion Fordring, but I felt like that paladin put his money where his mouth was. He basically went into exile for trying to promote understanding between Horde and Alliance. He has the cred to stand there and say “this is bigger than both of us.”
Thrall… did what, exactly? I don’t roleplay but my main IS a night elf druid and I can’t help but notice Thrall doing exactly nothing to prevent the devastation of the woodlands of Kalimdor, and that’s even before Catacylsm. As warchief, he talked a good game about unity and all. But his actions were…. rather mediocre. I never got the sense that peace meant much more to him than a way to chat up Jaina Proudmore. His idea of interspecies relations seemed about the same level.
Anyway. So no, so far this expansion having Thrall as the hero wasn’t my cup of tea. And his girlfriend Agra kind of pisses me off. At least they gave her a new voice. For a while there I thought maybe Thrall wasn’t into women, because his girlfriend sounded like a guy.
But there we are in Hyjal to repair the world tree. We’ve got druids and shaman, representatives of night elves and tauren. Cool. We’ve even got ol’ snappy dresser himself, Malfurion, and – ok, Twilight Cultists, kind of saw that coming. And now they’re threatening Thrall because he’s the chosen one or some such and poof, he’s gone. Everyone gives up on him pretty fast except his girlfriend and she’s pretty desperate. I guess I can help her out. So we’re off to Uldum to talk to wind spirits.
The wind platform was where I first realized what a mess this might be. There’s dozens of air elementals spawning and dying, and dozens of players killing them. Horde and Alliance. It’s a PVE server, so why are most of the Horde flagged? People are complaining in general chat about the Horde ganking them and I figure out pretty quickly that there’s a pack of griefers here. They’re waiting for someone to accidentally use an AOE, or tab target a flagged Hordie, and get flagged themselves.
Ok, I’m a boomkin right now anyway. Single target it is. I very carefully start killing stuff and make it all the way through without flagging.
For the earth and water parts, I work equally carefully. At the water place the only time I have trouble is when I’m trying to interact with Aggravating, mostly it’s fine. The earth spot is the same story as the winds place – and as I kill my last elemental, I tab too fast and moonfire a tauren druid. Crap. I quickly shapeshift to bird form and go wait out my debuff.
Then…. to the Firelands. And this is a nightmare. It’s more crowded than the other place, with mobs that have to be killed in the right place at the right time and a squad of ten horde just making life tricky. Inevitably I tab-target something, and bang, I’m dead. And then I realize the worst part. Why it is the gankers are hanging out. The quest progress gets reset when you die. I just wasted ten minutes.
Sigh. I wait very carefully, shadowmelded in a corner, til the debuff goes away. I come back and I do it right.
Save Thrall, blah blah blah story, blah blah, hey that’s a nice cape even if it doesn’t have spirit! Cool! Back to Hyjal to do the other stuff, the ones that will open dailies.
See, what annoys me about getting ganked was twofold. First, Blizzard had to know this would happen. It would have been insanely easy to prevent it; just make Aggra radiate “Sanctuary” to an area whatever size it needed to be around her. We’ve seen NPCs for epic quest chains before that radiate auras of infinite health or total pacification or whatever; she could have made it impossible to attack the other faction.
Second…. to the Hordies out ganking…. I was trying to help your freakin’ war chief and that’s the thanks I get? Your priorities sure are screwed up.
Again. Whiny post. Not directed at people who play Horde and aren’t jerks and I’m sure you met Alliance jerks doing these quests on your servers. Idiots are idiots. It just annoys me that Blizzard wouldn’t put in rudimentary safeguards. I don’t mind pvp, even world pvp, but gank fests are not fun.
And again. Thrall is utterly uninspiring as a save the world person, to me. I get that some people at Blizzard think he’s the Second Coming. On toast. And want his babies. I’m fine with that. But seriously, if you want him to have some appeal to us…. have him do some reaching out to the Alliance. Send him to Hellscream and tell that boy to see reason, or something. Because right now it feels like the Alliance is bending over backwards to try to face the threats to our world together with the Horde – and we’re getting screwed.