Griefer Nation

Griefer Nation
Dood, it's Part of the Game

Greg Tito | 15 Nov 2005 07:02
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The wind gently blew the fronds of the golden savannah and they bowed to me as if in greeting. Having left the deep green forests behind me, the openness of the grasslands was as refreshing as the breeze on my green-gray skin. My long ears pricked up to hear the sounds of small mammals and birds chirping a high-pitched greeting. Far off, I heard a metallic crash and was reminded that although this land was beautiful, it was alien and dangerous. I could convince myself that the sharp scent in the air was the fetid pile of lion dung rotting a few yards to my left but it could very well be the scent of a blood furied Orc's sweat. Nevertheless, I gripped my staff tightly, bundled my robes about me and trudged softly ahead, scanning the horizon ahead for both Orcs and dung heaps.

My destination was Dreadmist Peak. The mountain was not far from the border of Ashenvale, where I had to sneak around the Orc outpost. Sentinel Starstrike had commissioned me to slay an undead summoner by the name of Sarilus Foulborne. I was eager to explore beyond Night Elven lands and this seemed like just the excuse I needed. To be honest, I'd had this quest in my log since I was level 25 and now that I was 29, I figured this mage would go down pretty fast.

The slopes of Dreadmist jutted up in front of me and I began walking up a spur. About halfway up, a big red number flashed on my screen. A large cat appeared behind me and continued slashing at me. Bigger and redder numbers appeared above my head. I tried to throw some Pain on my attacker, but my cloth armor was ripped to shreds before I could even blast his mind once. I expired on the slopes of an alien mountain without much resistance.

My attacker shapeshifted into a huge Tauren, whose name was emblazoned in red above his head. It read, "Hellacow" (name changed to protect the asshole). He was way above my level, the skull in my target frame told me he was at least 39, but probably much higher. Before I could release my spirit to the nearest graveyard (wherever that was) I read those dreaded orange letters in my chat log. Hellacow, a wonderful, immersive name by the way, had the gall to spit on my corpse.

I've been ganked before. Playing on a PvP server in World of Warcraft is going to get you ganked, no question. What happened next went beyond mere ganking. I was killed a total of 19 times over the next hour-and-a-half by this Tauren druid and whatever low-level Horde he could recruit. Despite the long corpse run, I made a sport of it. Even at full health and mana, I couldn't get his health below 75% and he often never let me get fully healed before backstabbing me out of stealth mode. Trying to get away by rezzing in shadows and healing myself didn't work. Neither did rezzing and running. The openness of the Barrens was beautiful, but it left me nowhere to hide. Plus, a druid with travel form and me without a mount made it cake for him to catch up to me, kill me and spit on my corpse.

My experience is not unique. Many have been corpse-camped in Azeroth. But when the preceding story happened to my priest alt, I began to wonder. Who would do such a thing? What kind of a person would spend over an hour causing another player such agonizing boredom and grief? There was no chance for advancement for him in any way. The PvP ranking system does not give any rewards for killing a character so far below his level. He received no loot. He did not gain any experience points. We were not in a battleground where he could receive benefit from winning the board. I could not understand why anyone would do what he did. (I'm calling Hellacow a "he" because the avatar was a Tauren male model, and girls don't exist on the internet.) As a player, I could not imagine spending an hour terrorizing lowbies. I would get bored and move on to questing, leveling, anything, after a few minutes. Any time not advancing my character in some way is wasted time.

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