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When Blizzard Decides Your Story for You

by Lukar » November 17th, 2014, 2:05 pm

Immediately, I apologize if this post seems self-serving. I just wanted to put some of my thoughts out there since being informed (repeatedly) of my other-me meeting his untimely fate on Draenor, and what the implications of his existence might be on my character.


Apparently there was an other-me on Draenor. He didn't fare so well, sadly. On the plus side, that time travel paradox resolved nicely. I mean, it's awkward lighting my... him... other-me on fire, but you know.

I find it interesting though, the implications of (purely unintentionally) having an NPC with the same name as my character, especially in a situation like this, with travelling back in time. In general, Blizzard gives us a world, some guidance through lore, a few hard and fast rules, but we are largely left to our own devices when it comes to creating our character's story. So what happens, then, when suddenly, in a situation of meeting alternate versions of major characters, you meet yourself? In this case, other-me is dead. But the very existence has implications for the story I have created for my character. In essence, that freedom of story creation is stripped away if I assume Lukar of Draenor to be Lukar the me. The history of the Frostwolf Clan is fairly well-documented, leaving little room for interpretation.

I see myself as having two options. I can either play it off as some other orc bearing my name, or I can accept the opportunity (and story) handed to me. Both options present interesting opportunities.

To me, part of the fun of playing Lukar in RP has been that he stood out among other orcs. He was, broadly speaking, a pacifist. He was an advocate for peace and reconciliation at almost all times. He pushed for unity among the original guilds of the Vanguard, he sacrificed his honor to betray plans of the Vanguard to the Twilight Empire and gave away the location of the Order's headquarters at the time. One of the driving forces behind all these was that he, like Saurfang, felt a tremendous sense of regret for his actions when possessed by the blood curse. He joined the Aldor in Burning Crusade in order to try to make some sort of amends for his actions in the slaughter at Shattrath and Karabor. He long ago fighting "for the Horde" and instead adopts the mantle of fighting "for Azeroth," seeing it as the least he can do to try and protect a world he helped to ravage.

If I accept this NPC as actually being an alternate universe version of Lukar, it would mean, of course, that he was born a Frostwolf. In Lukar's backstory I had given him his own clan. Not a Chieftain, of course, and just a small clan, one which in current time has been completely wiped out. Obviously this would go away. Much of his actions on Azeroth during the wars would be gone too. Whether or not he participated in the siege of Shattrath would be questionable as well, at least based off what I've read of the Frostwolves. He still would have committed some atrocities on Draenor (the sack of Telmor comes to mind), but I wonder if he would have had the same experiences as he otherwise might have had.

So, while a lot of this is rambling by me as I sort through this in my head, I'm curious: what would you do if suddenly Blizzard essentially wrote your character's story for you? Me, I think I'm going to take the opportunity handed to me. While it requires some adjustments to his backstory, I like the roleplay possibilities of Lukar meeting himself, or rather discovering more of himself. I can see a scenario where Lukar is fascinated by the shamanistic rituals of his people, having grown up in a society that had become largely dominated by fel magics (Lukar being in his late 40s would have had little exposure to an orcish society not infected by Gul'dan and the Shadow Council).

But again, what about you?
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Re: When Blizzard Decides Your Story for You

by Tirien » November 17th, 2014, 3:58 pm

My first inclination would be to perceive it as one of Marvel Comic's "What If...?" stories.

My second inclination would be to find a way to work it into my character's pre-existing story with as little friction as possible.

I suppose it would come down to just how much is written for me. I'll assume 'entirely' based on your question. If that were the case I wouldn't necessarily be devastated, but I would be down about it. I dislike railroading and having creative control wrenched from my hands, though I enjoy having guidelines to direct my ideas.

I'm kind of in a safe boat here, being that I don't have any Horde RP toons, though if in a future expansion a duplicate of, say, Verin Blackcroft were to appear I would have a lot of issues. I RP Verin as a survivor of Stratholme. My second character (back in 2005), an Undead Priest sporting the name 'Verin', was my inspiration for Verin Blackcroft. I had the funny notion to RP them both at some point with one being the one who survived and the other being the one who did not. Nothing in the game supports this RP idea i feel, so I settled for the surviving version.

If Tirien here were to meet an NPC of the same name with his own backstory, well, I'm not allowed to say what would happen in this forum, but I will say I would happily find a way to work finding his duplicate into his story.

Rhork...Well...I would actually love to see how Blizzard would handle Rhork.

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Re: When Blizzard Decides Your Story for You

by Sergeant Stonzgrinda » November 17th, 2014, 4:03 pm

I was once asked if I knew "George, in Dallas" because I had lived in Dallas. I see no reason you can't regard Lukar as a common Orcish name.

On the other hand, I only see opportunity in your case if you wanted to use the coincidence to your advantage. If you want to make the dead and cremated Lukar an alternate you who was less fortunate, who is to say otherwise? Or you can leave fudging room if your Lukar simply has this understanding, or nagging question in his mind. Ambiguity can often be more interesting than logged data, and the Commissariat of Acceptable Lore can't gainsay you now or ever if it is a suspended possibility.

I am not a fan of omniscient character roleplay. Questions in the air are just fine.

Reacting negatively or tangentially to lore is just fine too. You really can't pretend it is not there, but you can certainly disdain some given fact or personality. If I can despise both mainstream candidates for office in real life, why can't I reject this or that lore character as a villain or a fool? Why should anyone's character strive to be <fill in the faction/race/class/sex> NPC # 24601? (little joke there)

I have always been for maximum creativity in roleplay. Otherwise what is the point?

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Re: When Blizzard Decides Your Story for You

by Naunet » November 17th, 2014, 7:29 pm

I think my first tendency would generally be to just go with the same-name-different-orc theory, primarily because I tend to discard most quest-happenings as not actually happening to my characters.


An alternate-universe you is kind of interesting. It being an alternate version might help explain the unfortunate story differences while maintaining your own freedom to mold your character. But it certainly leaves on the table some interesting questions for Lukar the RP Character to ponder or not, as he wishes. An ambiguous wondering may be just the thing.
"Song dogs barking at the break of dawn, lightning pushes the edges of a thunder storm. And these streets, quiet as a sleeping army, send their battered dreams to heaven."


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