Category: MMORPG

Vicarious Roguism

With all the temptation to join in the current MMORPG’s and my recent acquisition of Dragon Age: Origins, I’ve been pondering much about something I always find myself doing. For so many years now, I’ve loaded up that stereotypical fantasy game with its promises of epic diversions and crafted an identity from the depths of my imagination confined by pixels and stats. I’ve named the blank sheet of a character some elegant, yet completely impractical name, defined my identity through them with the idealistic traits I find myself drawn to artistically (long hair, fair eyes, athletic build).

When it came down to what job this fantasy personality might be, I’ve almost always settled on the class Rogue (or various incarnations, including but not limited to: Thief, Gambler, Assassin, and Corsair). Sure, I’ve played other classes just to see what they’re like, but this is the one that always felt closest to home.

Why is that? Do I secretly want to sneak into places I’m not allowed to be in? Do I suppress the urge to steal purses when citizens walk by? Better yet, do I somehow want to be an outlaw? Do those of you who play Warriors or Paladins find that this reflects your own personality as far as being honest and straightforward? Mage-players, do you find that this reflects something about your proclivity for intellectual thought and logic? Stereotypically speaking, of course.

While I don’t profess to be an outlaw, I’ve always been intrigued by forbidden places. There’s a house on 18th street in Midtown Atlanta that’s been abandoned for a few years and I can’t resist the urge to peek inside when the door is open. It was once a bonsai studio and I can make out the tall studio windows, broken glass, and husks of hanging plants still inside. I’ve never gone in, however, and I’m ceaselessly intrigued whenever I walk by it.

If anything, it’s the Rogue’s tendency for moral adaptability that encourages me to enjoy them most. I’ve never been one to settle for a black and white view of the world. There’s always a different slant to any debate, a possibility to see between the lines. This also links to my love of characters, particularly villains, who can gain our sympathy because they have strangely logical and sympathetic reasons for doing what they’re doing. By going Rogue, I like the ability to keep people guessing and to play the Trickster. Tack on a healthy dose of cleverness and you have traits I admire and would go so far as to say reflect my own personality (if you subtract two parts air-headedness and one part inability to be stealthy).

Funnily enough, I more often than not play the gentleman thief in most RPG games. What this says about me, I don’t quite know. The fact that I also play Elves/half-Elves almost exclusively is an entirely different debate altogether (elegant, aloof, nature-loving, snobbish? Hmmm…future blog topic, methinks).

Maybe it’s no surprise my favorite superhero is Batman, the most Roguish of superheroes and the definitive figure for that shadowy part of ourselves that does what it takes, even if it takes breaking the rules, to bring justice to the world.

But I’ve gone from D&D to Batman all in one post so I think I’ll end this for now.

What class do you play? What do you think this says about you? What fascinates you about any particular fantasy role? I’m dying to know!

Image from Thief 3: Deadly Shadows

Your Wings Await

A fresh can of Dr. Pepper (or two), comfortable pants, a late night muffin, and a bottle of painkiller for the eyestrain — this was at one time my regimen for playing MMORPGS (Massive Multiplayer Online Roleplaying Games) back in college. Gone are those days where I could survive on 4 hours sleep and function on chocolate muffins and cheeseburgers alone. (For the curious, I was an Elvaan named Zhele with plans to become a master thief-ranger. I’ll let you figure out the MMO). Nowadays, there just doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day nor the luxurious income (or excuse) to drop a monthly fee on a game.

And yet, it’s times like these where I miss that finger on the pulse of adventure and fantasy with friends in our own little personal epic. A new MMO called Aion recently released and I can’t help but feel that it was made for me. Extensive character customization, Assassins, crafting, warring angels & demons (of a sort), and your very own wings? I get brain twitches just looking at the beautiful videos and artwork for this game. I am totally sold (and have been since I saw the early concept art). Maybe, just maybe, I’ll work up the extra time and funds to play it? Can I brave being a n00b all over again?? We’ll see what happens once I finish my current huge project.

So why is it that we like MMO’s? Is it that feeling of being part of something larger than ourselves? I always got a warm and fuzzy feeling from saving lower level people from mobs that overwhelmed them or helping out a random stranger. Perhaps it’s the element of surprise? Nothing says ‘surprise’ better than stumbling upon a giant friendly looking sheep, only to learn that it’s actually a Tremor Ram that WILL kill you in one hit. Or how about hanging around and meeting great folks from around the world? I used to enjoy virtual boat rides where I could play virtual craps or telling jokes while we waited. I miss that spontaneity and bonding with others, a very tempting aspect of games, especially when considering the fact so many of us are work-at-home types who rarely get to see the outside world!

There’s always the fear I’ll get sucked in and never see the sunlight, but I’m not getting sunlight now so that might not be too incredibly detrimental as long as I learn to venture out from my hidey hole every now and again. Remembering how to socialize properly with others in real life is key!

So what are your memories of MMO’s? Do you play? What’s your favorite one? Why is it that we love them so much?

Image Source: Aion Aiva Wallpaper