(Ah. Authenticators in place we’re back in business.)
I was thinking last night as I traversed the dock in Menethil that things weren’t always so tranquil. That is to say, things weren’t so tranquil on the PvP server I was on when I really got into the game from a social aspect. Now I ride out on the pier and wait for the boat. Back then, on the PvP server, you did not know if there was a stealthed rogue waiting for you, and your back to turn. Or, worse, they were on the boat. Waiting for you, flagged because you’re in the Wetlands, to board. This was like a luxury liner with botulism on the menu. This was grounds for panic. This was where the adrenal glands kicked in. Senses heightened, blood flowing, you were alive, and wanted to stay alive.
Now, on my RPPvE servers, I know I’m safe until I do something like steal a flame, invade a city, or join a battleground.
See, back on my *first* server, before I’d gone over to the PvP server, they were talking about picnics in the forums. Between Horde and Alliance. Out in the barrens. Or wherever. In the community forums. And I was thinking “They just don’t get it. We’re at War! This is World of Warcraft for crying out loud.” Picnics? PICNICS? You should be chasing them down, driving their soldiers to destruction, hearing the lamentations of their womenfolk. Conan got it right!
And things improved in that department when I got over to the PvP server. And then to the next PvP server where I enjoyed the game to it’s fullest. The stress of the PvP environment and being with a kick ass group of over 60 players to progression raid the 40-man content. There were no picnics. We raided Menethil until the Dishonor rule kicked in. That was too risky a move to someone interested in gaining rank. One idiot in the raid kills a civilian and those working on ranks were totally screwed. That killed the organized enmasse city raids for us. But, lordy, wasn’t it fun to get a 5-man party together and go knock on Aldrasil’s door. Silly level 2 Night Elves actually attack and get instagibbed.
I eventually left the PvP servers, being 8 hours out of synch with them and playing more with the wife and certainly not wanting or willing to watch the wife ridden down by some level 34 Dwarf in Ashenvale while we’re just trying to play this game.
And, heck, I know I’d not want to be on the receiving end of an endless gankfest. (Of course I’d also be guilded and have friends to rely on in that case.)
But the concept of some pacifists wanting to have picnics with the Horde still irks me. That’s not the concept of this game. It’s about conflict. Not picnics. This isn’t a sandbox where you write all your own stories. There’s a story around us. Let’s abide. (And, okay, I admit, Thrall would probably have a picnic with Taretha Foxton, if he still could, poor guy, and with Jaina, since the story there is these two are such friends. But you and I, we’re soldiers in the ranks.)
That takes us to Shattrath and Dalaran. These are picnics forced on us. And the same clowns I mowed down, or who blasted my soul, in Wintergrasp five minutes earlier, are there with me in Dalaran picking mustard flowers, or sitting on mounts outside of our community banks.
I think it’s good news to hear that there won’t be any mamby pamby “neutral” places in Cataclysm. (No more than already. And consider Gadgetzan, Everlook, and Booty Bay aren’t neutral in the same sense as Shat and Dal. You are still flagged and vulnerable on PvP servers. That edge and sense of conflict still remains in the Goblin towns.)
No more picnics. Pass the fire ants please.