Warcraft [YouTube] [Trailer]
“The peaceful realm of Azeroth stands on the brink of war as its civilization faces a fearsome race of invaders: Orc warriors fleeing their dying home to colonize another. As a portal opens to connect the two worlds, one army faces destruction and the other faces extinction. From opposing sides, two heroes are set on a collision course that will decide the fate of their family, their people and their home. So begins a spectacular saga of power and sacrifice in which war has many faces, and everyone fights for something.”[more inside]
In what would turn out to be a watershed event in the history of viral videos and online multiplayer gaming, footage of the Leeroy Jenkins incident was uploaded to the internet ten years ago today (previously).
Meet the Green Candidate. Is Maine ready to elect America's first Orc Assassin Rogue senator?
Steganographic information (account ID, a timestamp and the IP address of the current realm) is secretly embedded in World of Warcraft screen shots. Via Schneier.
Gamer Mom is a short piece of interactive fiction about a mom who plays games, and her family that doesn't. [more inside]
Within Minecraft’s blocky world, he has spent about 100 hours so far on a re-creation of Azeroth, the enormous setting of Blizzard’s massively multiplayer game, World of Warcraft (WoW). His name is Ramses. Here's an interview he did with Games Beat. You can see his forum posts here. And there are pictures. [more inside]
WoW Detox -- "WoWdetox is a volunteer-run web site aimed at people with a gaming addiction to World of Warcraft. Here gamers and ex-gamers can share their testimonies freely and anonymously."
World of Warcraft's Wrath of the Lich King expansion involves a quest titled The Art of Persuasion. Richard Bartle, co-author of MUD (and pioneer of MMO gaming), speaks out against this: "Basically, you have to take some kind of cow poke and zap a prisoner until he talks. I'm not at all happy with this. I was expecting for there to be some way to tell the guy who gave you the quest that no, actually I don't want to torture a prisoner, but there didn't seem to be any way to do that..." (via) [more inside]
The 2005 outbreak of Corrupted Blood in World of Warcraft may provide epidemiologists with a new platform for studying the spread of disease.
By using these games as an untapped experimental framework, we may be able to gain deeper insight into the incredible complexity of infectious disease epidemiology in social groups.It comes as no surprise that the "stupid factor" plays a role in susceptibility to viral marketing, but it may also be a factor in the spread of real life germs.
I am Murloc. Cool World of Warcraft music video. (Note: Impressed me, but I've never played WoW. Might not impress WoW players, I dunno. Won't change your mind if you already hate WoW. Horrible vocals.)
The History Of Dance -- World of Warcraft style.
Freezing Blade, Quiet Moon and Bronze Mustache. A tale from modern China of betrayal, vigilantism and general woe in WoW and Real-LifeTM.
The Internet Is For Porn is a song from the Broadway comedy Avenue Q (an adult version of Sesame Street) that I found myself humming for quite a while after watching this homemade machinima video using World of Warcraft characters. (warning first link goes to a Google Video with audio).
"Virtual Virus Sheds Light on Real-Life Behavior." A researcher at Tufts University's Center for the Modelling of Infectious Diseases, Dr. Nina Fefferman, is studying the behavior of World Of Warcraft players during the recent plague that broke out in Ironforge (discussed on Metafilter here.) But Dr. Fefferman is not the first academic to study MMORPGs seriously. Edward Castronova, an economist, arguably pioneered the field with his 2001 paper Virtual Worlds, in which he argues that the economy in Everquest produced a GNP per capita somewhere between that of Russia and Bulgaria. (He has followed up that paper with many more on similar subjects.)