So as those of you who listen to the Mashcast may know, I play WoW, and I play it enough that I’m not allowed to talk about it. These are my thoughts for this week in WoW…
While there have been accusations of a Horde-bias within Blizzard, I will openly admit to being biased, which is why my thoughts so far have focused on the Horde. But even if Blizzard does favor the Horde over the Alliance, allowing players of one faction to seize control of their side while their counterparts continue serving NPC’s would be brazenly unfair.
While the Horde has a clearly delineated chain of command, with a high-ranking Warchief lording over each of the other racial leaders, the Alliance nations are all considered equal in footing. Varian assumed military control of the Alliance forces for the assault upon the Lich King, and as such is regarded as the Alliance leader. For a player to assume control over the Alliance, the Alliance leaders only need to decide that there is a war hero who deserves to lead their forces more than Varian Wrynn.
As with the Horde, Alliance players at level 90 will already be well known by their faction. There should be no reason why any Alliance figure would object to a player’s ascension. The main issue will be Varian opting to remove himself from military power.
We already know that Varian’s going to be more involved in the Mists of Pandaria storylines than he has been in Cataclysm. Just as Thrall was heavily featured in the Elemental Bonds quest, Varian is going to be given his own questline, Trials of the High King. The premise is that Varian will be undergoing several challenges and the player will accompany him to provide assistance.
As can be expected in these sorts of challenges, the bulk of the work will fall on the player’s shoulders, while Varian advances through the trials, not unlike the player doing the bulk of the work in Uldum, while Harrison Jones claims all the fortune and glory. Although this seems to ostensibly be intended to address Varian’s character flaws in order to forge him into a better Alliance leader, the success of the player in aiding Varian could help estabalish that while he makes a fine King of Stormwind, he should not be in command of the entire Alliance. This realization, combined with the defeat of Garrosh (something Varian never achieved), would result in Varian and the rest of the Alliance leadership annointing the player as High General of the Alliance.
Hence, leaving Mists, we would have a player in charge of both factions.
With the Horde and Alliance firmly in the player’s control, and an expansion wrapping up, Azeroth will be in a state it has not been in since the original Warcraft: Orcs and Humans — both factions will be controlled by unnamed player rulers. While an expansion allowing for player-leadership is possible, the real way to utilize this level of control would be to give players literal control over their faction. Following Mists of Pandaria in two years would be a great time to release Warcraft IV.
Just as a bulk of the action surrounding the cataclysm happened in the novel The Shattering, and the state of the game changed overnight, whatever should come to pass as part of Warcraft IV could be addressed in the patch leading into the next expansion. At that point, the player’s leadership could be revoked, or we could continue leading Azeroth into the future.
As excited as I am for Mists of Pandaria, I can’t wait to see what happens afterwards, because it’s going to be amazing.
Recruit-a-Friend Rocket going away! Does anyone still have any friends that haven’t tried WoW??? cuz they’ll need some to get whatever mount is next… http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/5203164
Dragon Soul buff upped to 20%! Lets hope MoP is ready before it gets too easy!!! http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/5245475
Don’t forget Children’s Week is going on! I HATE CHILDREN’S WEEK!!! http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/4859317/Childrens_Week_is_Here_April_29_-_May_5-4_26_2012#blog