When you’re evil

Secretly, everyone has a weakness for the darker side of life. I mean, most of us never get the chance to be the beast we are, deep inside. Of course, that is a good thing. Imagine a society where everyone could just let out that animal inside…I wouldn’t be interested living in it, folks.

However, when it comes to slipping into the husk of a digital alter ego, many take the chance and embrace their dark passions as long as they do it through some sort of virtual avatar. This phenomenon is also something seen in tabletop role-playing, and to an extent, it adds to the experience. Unfortunately, I’ve seen too many of these “evil-doers” and have to vent my frustration about them right here.

You see, when Wrath of the Lich King went live, I was prepared for the dark and gloomy wave of Death Knights, the first “Hero Class” in the World of Warcraft. The lore behind the Death Knights of Azeroth is quite cool and interesting, and I loved the story of Arthas in Warcraft 3. Even from a gameplay point-of-view, the class is new and fun to play. Also I can understand when people what something new after playing one or two classes for a few years.

However, I forgot a very important factor: I play on a role-playing server. And trust me, most role-players in WoW are teenage drama queens who just need a place to have their hormones run wild and do all the naughty and bad things they just can’t do in real life, without their parents slapping them into a coma. Now, the formula is simple. Scientists, behold! I dub this the “First principle of Schmidt” (gotta love my last name!)

G = 100 – (A x 2) + D

In this formula, G is the “Gloomy index”. The higher the number, the higher the odds the person you are currently role-playing with is going to go all-out emo on you. For example, if someone has a G of 78, you have 78% chance of hearing stuff about his family that was slaughtered by owlbears, his long-lost love which was raped and kidnapped by the Cookie Monster, or how hard he sucks in curling.

A is age, and should be multiplied by two. In general, younger people have a higher Gloomy index, especially nowadays where most teenies are confronted with sad poems and songs about depressions on a daily basis.

D is the variable for other dark influences, factors that should be taken in account. Some of these factors are based in real life and seriously affect the person self, others are based in the fantasy world the person is role-playing in. The following table will show the dark influence of certain factors, and should be used as an orientation point when calculating the Gloomy index.

Factor Dark influence rating
Dumped by girlfriend lately 10
Dumped by several girlfriends lately 15
Never had a girlfriend 20
Active MySpace profile 10
Playing a gloomy race (most Elvish races) 10
Playing a gloomy class (Warlock, sorcerer, necromancer, Death Knight, Deathguard etc.) 5

So, let’s do the math for a 14-year old rolling up a Death Knight, intended for role-play in Silvermoon City. The boy never had a girl before, but is of course a slave to his uncontrolled lust for boobies and ass, and has around 400 “friends” on MySpace. Also, his Death Knight will be a Blood Elf, as our 14-year old finds comfort in playing the remnant of a broken and fallen race, who now struggles to survive in a world that is so harsh to them. Oh lord…

G = 100 – ( 14 x 2 ) + (20 [no girlfriend) + 10 [MySpace] + 10 [gloomy race] + 5 [gloomy class])

This results in a Gloomy index of 117! Beware of this kid, because he will cry about his lost pride and his dark soul for hours if you let him. Afterwards, he will play with the little Orc kids right outside Orgrimmar, to atone for his grievous sins.

Of course, this formula is anything but scientific, but I want to make a point with it: most, especially young role-players try to play something which they could never be in real life. That alone is anything but bad, and is the point of role-playing. I could never be a Troll in real life, let alone a spirit-conjuring Shaman! The poo hits the fan when these role-players try to at drama to their characters, and just throw too much salt into the soup. In the end, all I want to say is that you should learn how to cook up a delightful role-playing character. And playing a fantasy version of the lead singer of Taking Back Sunday, reciting painful poems every minute, is not good role-playing.

So, a word to all you “gloomy” role-players: think about your concept before you play it. There are dozens of Drizzt’s, tons of Cloud’s and far too many Arthas-rip off’s. Talk with fellow role-players about your heartbroken soldier, and get yourself some advice from them. Give even the most evil and ruthless fellow a weak, and maybe even warm spot in his frozen and bitter heart. Soon, you will taste the fruits of your work: satisfied role-players around you, who might not like your character, but who will like you for at least TRYING something new.

That’s it for the day, folks. As a little bonus for all the dark emo-kids feeling agitated about this, just listen this. It might cheer you up!

Signed,

Aki!

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