Getting the Band Back Together: The Return of Kel’thuzad – Part 1

Mind, Body, and Soul

Arthas and Anub’arak were lounging backstage of the Nexus.  Arthas, feet up on the table tuning his guitar.  Anub’arak flipping though the Battle Records in his Flight case.

As Arthas ran though some warm-up cords, he noticed the air was cooler than normal, and there was a smell in the air, iron maybe?  At the same time, Anub’arak noticed and they both looked towards the green room door that had just opened.

In the doorway stood a familiar figure they hadn’t seen in years. For a what felt like an eternity there was silence.  Finally, Arthas spoke.  “Kel’thuzad?  You damned skeletal son of a lich.  You gotta lotta nerve showing your face around here.” Athas had risen from the couch and moved over to the floating figure.  Kel’thuzad betrayed no emotion as Arthas slammed his hand down on his shoulder.  Arthas face broke into a smile. and he pulled Kel in for a hug.

“Always the sentimental one.”  Kel responded dryly as Arthas released his grip.

“What is the reason for your return, lich?” Anub’arak asked.  Despite his eerie and alien vocal tones, the suspicion in his voice was clear.

“I am here to get the band back together.” Kel’thuzad extended his massive hands in a friendly gesture as he said the words.

Anub’arak scoffed, “YOU abandoned US for your solo career. It is your fault everyone thinks you are a one hit wonder. Now that you can not replicate your success, you return?”

Arthas smirked, “I hear you play ‘Naxxramas’ TWICE at your concerts.”

Kel waved them both off dismissively, “I’m not here about the past, I want to discuss our future. We need a reunion tour! I wanted to discuss terms with you both.  I hear that Ner’zul is no longer managing you?  I think I recall warning you against trying to be manager and star, didn’t I Arthas?”

“You said, ‘Don’t put on too many hats.’, but I have been managing things very well since then.  That’s not something I plan on giving up.  If you are going to work with us again, that’s how it’s going to stay.”  Arthas had dropped the friendly pretence.  Emotion in the room was raw despite the years that had passed for it to cool down.

“Of course.” was Kel’thuzad’s reply.  “I don’t want to shake up what you’ve got going on, I just want to be a part of it again.  A reunion tour would do us all a world of good.”

Arthas’ severe expression melted into a more pleasant one.  He almost smiled again.  “I’ll have a contract written up.  We can start working on tour schedules…”

“AS soon as we get the others.” Kel interjected.  Both Arthas hand Anub’arak’s faces froze in astonishment.

“But… Malganis is dead.” Anub’arak stated, although it could have been a question.

“And Sylvanas…”  Arthas threw his hands up.  He didn’t need to explain.  “She would never.”

Kel’thuzad leaned in towards the two of them.  His calm demeanor started to crack.  Slowly he curled his hands in to fists. “When I said I wanted to get the band back, I meant the WHOLE band.”

Part 2Part 3

Rocking Arthas

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Should the Faction Divide be Eliminated?

Every now and again I hear people talking about how the factions should be eliminated from World of Warcraft to facilitate easier game play.  That the model of dual factions is outdated and we should all be able to group with whomever we want.

I do understand the mechanics behind such a request.  When someone has friends that have mains in the opposite faction it can be a hassle.  Faction swap might be an option if you have some friends over here and some friends over there.

Generally the rebuttals to this are something along the lines of, “But it’s World of WARcraft.” and “The factions can’t put aside their long histories.

But what if instead of merging the existing factions they disintegrated completely.  In Mists we saw the horde rip itself in two.  It easily could have been a wound that the faction failed to recover from.  Ironforge is in a similar position with trying to keep all the dwarf clans living in peace under one roof.  The reintroduction of the Highborn to Darnassus, and there has been strife in the Exodar over acceptance of the broken draenei.  All that is just in the Alliance.  If these cities go to war with themselves, then they can’t support the large group they are supposed to be a part of.

If this were to happen it would increase the amount of conflict and war in the setting, so that’s a plus, and the “but it’s World of WARcraft” argument doesn’t work.  Dissolving the factions also undermines the historical animosities, because those organizations that were involved wouldn’t exist in the same capacity.

Ather argument that I’ve heard is, “It wouldn’t make sense to have Orcs running around Stormwind.”  To that I say, it could be that each race has one or two other capital cities that they are still always considered at war with, no orcs in Stormwind, no worgen in the Undercity, etc.

What do you think?  Faction Pride or Factions Outdated?

TL;DR Ironforge should destroy itself in civil war and Gnomeregan should replace it as a capital city.  It’s in a much better location because it could have a submarine port on the coast.

GvsORC2

Gnomes in Hearthstone part 2!

Last week we talked about the primary characteristic of gnomes in Hearthstone, drawing cards.  There is another mechanic that gnomes have a lot of, buffing and debuffing.  When I started reviewing the cards I was surprised by how many gnomes buff.  I thought that buffing was just such a generic ability (a lot of these cards are pirates) that it wasn’t really a big deal, bug then, I compared them to goblins, and goblins almost NEVER buff.  So what does this tell us about gnomes?

I think it ties back into gnomes being engineers.  Drawing cards is analogous to inventing new devices.  Buffing is improving and enhancing existing things (a very important and often overlooked aspect of engineering).  There were 13 draw cards and now we have 11 buff/debuff cards.

The subtle and flexible theming in Hearthstone is great.  It expands on the Warcraft lore in a freeform way that is really fun and interesting to see.

WeeSpellstopperUsherOfSoulsTwilightElderTinkertownTechnicianSmall-TimeBuccaneerShrinkmeisterShadyDealerPlagueScientistEnhance-oMechanoCogmasterBloodsailCultist

 

 

 

What are Gnomes in Hearthstone?

There are a lot of gnome minions in Hearthstone, 51 as of Frozen Throne.  In the 6 expansions that have released some patterns have emerged.  Gnomes primarily put cards in your hand, either directly like the Gnomish Inventor, or indirectly like Wilford Fizzlebang.

GnomishInventorWilfredFizzlebang

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This seems to be the niche gnomes fill in Hearthstone as a whole.  I’m kinda sad that Northshire Cleric is not a gnome card since it is probably the most common Draw card used.  13 of the 51 Gnomes in the game put or, facilitate putting, cards in your hand.  In fact the “Spare Parts” mechanic added in the Goblins vs Gnomes expansion is NOT found on any of the goblin cards in that set.  This reinforces the gnome roll in gaining cards. I am most impressed with new Gnomeferatu card, which basically has you draw a card from your opponent’s deck and then discard it.  It’s exactly what you would expect from a gnome parasite.

ClockworkGnomeGnomeferatuGnomishExperimenterJeevesLootHoarderNetherspiteHistorianNoviceEngineerPolluted HoarderShallowGravediggerTinkertownTechnicianToshley

 

Heroes of the Storm – Hero Announcements

Disclaimer:  This is not about Mekkatorque*.

Garrosh is imminent!  Back when he was announced, there were grumblings on Twitter from people saying “Oh no, not another orc.  Enough orcs already!”  It is something that I myself was guilty of.  There were also other voices, people who had been waiting on Garrosh for a LONG time.

The list below is from a video that was put up in 2011.  Now, if you are a player that is really excited about any of the names circled in red, you’ve been waiting for 6 years for the hero they teased to be released.  That sucks.  It would have been far better if none of these heroes had been teased.  Each one being a complete surprise.

Every hero announcement, no matter how cool it is, is immediately deflated by the fact that it’s not the one hero you wanted.  And while that’s a natural part of the cycle for Heroes of the Storm.  It extra sucks when they’ve teased the hero you want and they never seem to come.

It’s weird because when a hero from a franchise I don’t play get’s announced I’m indifferent, but when a hero from ‘my’ game gets released, that is when I get disappointed.  I know it’s a game, and more heroes are always coming.  I love HotS and enjoy playing it with the characters that are there, (Leper Chromie FTW).

Oh well, the genie is out of the bottle now.  I need to go update the list now.  Put a Check mark on Garrosh and I guess on Ghost Kerrigan as well?

HotS2011

*Mekkatorque is in the category of heroes I am discussing, but the reasoning applies to all of them.

Journal Entry, AUGizmo 1st, 2017

Everyone enjoyed the Dance Studio!  We gnomes have been hard at work for YEARS creating lights strong enough for all the races of Azeroth to dance on.  It was NOT easy! But nobody thanked me!  I mean, I didn’t build them personally, but they were built by gnomes, and as their King I should get a Thanks, uh, tithe?

Anyway.  Everyone was supposed to be face down pass out drunk in Dalaran right now but it got canceled.  Oh man… I invested all that money in the hangover remedies.  I’m ruined!

passedout