Posted by: Sean | January 27, 2009

Random Attack! (Mailbag)

Man. Post Australia Day and having to gasp get back to work, my brain still feels like pineapple slushy. Here’s a random sample of thoughts based mostly on comments from the site. It’s kind of a mailbag column for stuff we felt was worth addressing, mostly from our call for theme week ideas. (We’re still thinkin’.)

Al asks:

Lore sources. We roleplayers of the WoW variety know all about and the official WoW site but what constitutes what is “canon” and what is not? Are there some hidden gems out there that we just don’t know about that you all do?

Here’s the list of what is canon:

  • The games;

After that, nothing is actually canon. Seriously. At best, they’re “mostly canon”. However, here’s a list of what’s ‘mostly canon’.

  • The World of Warcraft website;
  • The comics
  • The manga
  • The novels
  • The role-playing game
  • And presumably the card game, somehow.

So for a full set of lore materials, you would need World of Warcraft, Warcraft III (and expansion), Warcraft 2 (and expansion), Warcraft 1, the novels and manga, the comic, and the role-playing game.

Here at Blogatelle, we don’t use nearly that much.

As far as I’m concerned, there’s four sources that are essential. The first is the game itself – I actually underuse this resources because of how I blog, but there’s no better source. After that, I use WoWWiki, the Alliance Players Guide and the Horde Player’s Guide.

WoWWiki is staggeringly useful, and while I’ve been criticised for relying too heavily on it, the fact remains that it’s the single most accessible, useful guide to the game’s lore out there. The guides, meanwhile, are probably the essential supplement for the kind of writing we do. While there’s undoubtedly more lore out there that would better inform our columns, in terms of stuff directed at us as role-players, the kind of stuff that gives us cultural information, stuff we can use, there’s just nothing better. Ignore the original rulebook and go right for the Players Guides.

Mommacow writes:

…class play files/breakdowns/examinations? Just a thought, says the obsessive druid.

First off, as Jess has noted, we do have the Do It Different series for classes. But I get that’s not what you’re looking for; you’re after a more in depth examination of what it means to be a druid. Which is great. The problem is that we’re being beaten to the punch, and by someone with a lot more resources than we do: The inestimable David Bowers. His “So you want to be…” series has been digging into classes for a while now, and he’s doing it with style.

Now, he did races before this, it’s true. But he was looking at races in terms of history, past, and story. That left a gap for us to look at race relations and stereotypes instead; we could add to the discussion rather than just repeat it.

This isn’t to say we might not do a few columns addressing some of the classes now and then, but really, we don’t think we can do it better than David is. Why reinvent the wheel?

Adam remarks:

I personally would like to see Jess try to find a connection between kobolds and porn. (You not take incense candle!)

Dude. You never saw Debbie Does Fargodeep? I feel sorry for you.



  1. “Debbie Does Fargodeep?” Is that the one where the antagonist is named Fargo?

  2. The audience are making their own jokes.

  3. You set ’em up, Sir, and I knock ’em down.

  4. I’d love to see the Google search stats for ‘Debbie does Fargodeep’.

  5. Thank for the response! I can completely agree with your interpretation of “canon” and “almost canon”. The Player’s Guides do rest on my bookshelf (being a tabletop gamer as well helps!) and are often consulted for lore and cultural information., as you mentioned, is a staggering resource for RP information but it still can be faulty due to the fact that anyone can edit it. Regardless, it still is there and has a good amount of information.

    And you think Debbie does Fargodeep was bad? Check out Debbie does Thrallmar. ~Shudders~

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