Saturday, September 3, 2011

Divided Loyalties

Recently, for the giggles of it, I've been playing a Blood Elf priest on a different server than my main every so often on weekends.  She's doing fine at level 23, except for one slight difficulty.

I like leveling in the Blood Elf lands, but one can only level up through about level 20 before being more or less forced to leave and expand one's horizons.  Accordingly, I accepted the call to duty in Hillsbrad Foothills and headed in that direction, grateful to not be an undead as I ran through their areas.

But when I got to Hillsbrad Foothills, I found nefarious schemes to grow spider eggs in the flesh of bears, then kill the bears and collect the eggs.  With bile in my throat, I completed these quests, thinking it would be over after that, and I would be back to animal control or crafting materials quests.  But after that, I found quests about which the questgivers displayed attitudes of devilish delight at the schemes in place.  And I found I simply could not bear to follow these quests.  How could I be a part of such things, which sickened my stomach?

No problem.  There is more than one place to quest, and I already had a quest to take me to Ogrimmar.

In Ogrimmar, I accepted the call to duty to Ashenvale.  But when I got to Ashenvale, I found the Horde busily fighting Night Elves.

Night Elves . . . . . . . my main is a Night Elf, and has been for six years . . . Every day, when I've logged on, I've seen and identified with purple hair and long ears.  This attacking army was my group, not some enemy.  (I had even skipped the quests in the Blood Elf lands which required mass killing Night Elves . . .)

I decided to try skipping the kill quest which required me to kill numbers of attacking Night Elves and pursue gathering arrows and wood and such, instead, killing only when attacked.

This worked to get me past that area, amazingly enough.  But the next area was also embroiled in war.  And in this one, there were a few more nefarious schemes.  Using the blood of the Night Elves to corrupt the wood of their sacred tree?  You've got to be kidding me . . . Even the Horde were calling it diabolical.

A co-worker who never really maxes out her characters, but tends to restart and replay early zones often, had told me she was disappointed with some of the new quest chains for leveling Horde.  Her reason?  It made the Horde seem evil.  I thought she was exaggerating, but today, I couldn't help but remember her comments.  You see, this is a difficulty I did not encounter when I was leveling my Blood Elf hunter, pre-Cataclysm.  But, obviously, the quests were different then.

So where can I quest now from level 23 which will not make me feel dirty or feel like I am killing my own family?

I know there will be people who think I am being completely and utterly silly about this.  "It's a game, already!" they'll holler at their computers.  Call it my overdeveloped sense of loyalty.  Call it my oddball sense of identifying too closely with my characters.  But for whatever reason, rational or irrational, to me, it is a problem.  I can't work with these people.

I'm beginning to think I'd better just run instances and gather herbs until I can make it past these zones and go to, say, Stranglethorn Vale, where all I have to do will be to slaughter helpless carnivores with sharp teeth who would gladly chew my bones if they could get hold of them.  Or is that still what happens in Stranglethorn Vale these days?

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