TEDDY BEARS! TEDDY TEDDY TEDDY!
Ugh. I tried. I really did. But in the end, there’s not a whole lot of role-play opportunities for the Timbermaw, even though they’re a race you can disguise yourself as and… HOLD ON I GOT AN IDEA.
OK, we’ll come back to that idea tomorrow maybe. I’m too wedded to my idea for today to pursue it properly anyhow. And this is an NPC races idea, loosely, in that it deals with several faction races like the Timbermaw.
See, I have a basic problem with them to some degree. Let me give you an example.
My undead warrior, who adores the fuzzy teddy bears for reasons that aren’t entirely clear, has been known to simply hang around in Timbermaw Hold chatting to the various locals. I don’t tend to do this for long though, since they don’t talk back much really. But still, it’s occasionally fun to do when I’m on my way back to Winterspring after doing some reputation grinding in Felwood. For some strange reason, I’ve left my PVP flag on and I get attacked by someone. The Timbermaw would rush to my aid, since I’m friendly with them. (Actually, I’m unsure if the Timbermaw do defend you on friendly but even if this isn’t the case my example works with the goblins, so shut up, I’m working this here.) And this is all well and good, I mean, we’re meant to be friends here – That’s what friends do.
Well, most friends. Jess sends black clad thugs to beat me up when I don’t write my stories here.
Anyway, this one I do know is true because it’s not hypothetical: Let’s say that while he’s hanging around in Timbermaw Hold, some bastard-ass Blood Elf decides he can’t be bothered grinding rep, and he’s just going to cut his way through, killing the very people I’ve spent so much time trying to gain the trust of. I’m pretty sure that they’d expect me to return the favour, right? To leap in, kill the sucker doing this, and save their cute little teddy bear asses.
But nope, I can’t do that. Because even if he was PVP flagged, I couldn’t attack him, he’s of my faction.
See? One way friends. Which is really a bit annoying because I’m horribly biased against Blood Elves and want to kill them more quite fond of the Timbermaw.
The whole experience made me post to the Warcraft forums about it, but since it will eventually go off those I’ll just repost what I said here for posterity.
Once you hit Honored with an independent faction (like the Timbermaw or the Oracles, say) you can become a defender of that faction. Anytime someone kills a member of the faction, they secretly flag ‘Faction Killer’. If they’re on a PVP realm, this happens anytime they’re in a contested zone, if on PVE this will only occur if they’re PVP flagged. (it’s sort of an add-on to the PVP flag.)
When flagged faction killer, anyone with an Honored or higher rep… either side… can attack you, similar to the Dire Maul arena, or the Gurubashi arena. Furthermore, if you kill them and the kill yields honor, you get 60 rep.
This would let people do more than just stand around yelling, “Stop it! Stop it or I’m telling mom!” when someone runs around killing a group of people you’ve ostensibly befriended.
A potential revision of this would have you also lose the same amount of reputation with the associated city of whomever you killed. Which is annoying, but nothing a quick turn-in of twenty runecloth couldn’t fix. Though honestly, I wouldn’t even put that in. If you’re stupid enough to attack the Timbermaw, then it’s on your own head.
But Sean, I hear you cry, this is a role-play blog. What does this have to do with roles and the playing thereof? Good question, but easy enough to answer: It’s about the immersion, stupid! Like it or not, not being able to leap in and crack open the skull of someone threatening your buddies breaks immersion pretty quickly, deadening the sense of a real world. Since as role-players one of our big goals is to improve immersion at every time, these kinds of details matter.
(For those of you who expected this article to be about how you do all this work for the damn factions and then get repaid in trinkets, well, yes, you could argue it that way too.)