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Old 07-10-2013, 08:51 AM
Anansi Anansi is offline

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There are so many actors in play these days that we cannot help but hate because Blizzard is such an insufferable klutz when it comes to characterization. In many cases, this failure can be traced to CDev's tendency to write people as almost caricatured extremes of personality and motivation.

What's most pathetic and vicariously embarrassing of all is when backlash to a figure's laughable extremity of character prompts the writers at Blizzard to swing him (because it almost invariably is a 'him') all the way to the other side, creating just as terrible a character as before and heaping on top of that the added sin of wildly inconsistent writing.

So, yeah, yeah. Blizzard sucks and all that. But let's put our money where our collective mouth is and show them we can do better.

In this thread, I invite you to describe how YOU personally would have handled characters like Garrosh, Varian, Anduin, Baine, Jaina, Thrall and any others you think have suffered from the blunt exaggeration of one personality trait.
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:55 AM
SmokeBlader SmokeBlader is offline

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I'll just quote my post from another thread.

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Garrosh should have been evil from the beginning. Starting as a tough warrior who admired his father and wanted to be like him. After he becomes warchief his true face is shown. A monster with a lot of power, who wants to conquer the world for himself.
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:55 AM
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Not sure I agree with the premise to this. The only Varians and Thralls (et al) that exist are the ones that Blizzard created. Its like saying "Let's take this character, and turn them into a different character." They wouldn't be the same person if we wrote them.
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:56 AM
Anansi Anansi is offline

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Originally Posted by Sarahmoo View Post
Not sure I agree with the premise to this. The only Varians and Thralls (et al) that exist are the ones that Blizzard created. Its like saying "Let's take this character, and turn them into a different character." They wouldn't be the same person.
Exactly.

And the story would be better for it, no?
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Old 07-10-2013, 08:58 AM
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Exactly.

And the story would be better for it, no?
I don't know that. I have read some of the ideas that people have on here, and some of them are pretty cool, but I'm not sure I would enjoy more throwing the reins over to someone here than just enjoying what we actually have.

Last edited by Shaman; 07-10-2013 at 09:02 AM.. Reason: I stupid
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:02 AM
Anansi Anansi is offline

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Originally Posted by Sarahmoo View Post
I don't know that. I have read some of the ideas that people have on here, and some of them are pretty cool, but I'm not sure I would enjoy more throwing the reigns over to someone here than just enjoying what we actually have.
Why not both?

I very much doubt this thread will have an impact on Blizzard's writing department, so I'm not really throwing SoL the reins so much as asking SoL where'd they take us if I did.
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I was probably just upset about the Horde fleet in the Second War.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:02 AM
BaronGrackle BaronGrackle is offline

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Turalyon would've immediately had a certain admiration for Lothar, this leader of survivors from across the sea, and that respect would've grown over time---but he would NOT carry on like a blustering schoolboy throughout the war and beyond. Likewise, he might have noticed Alleria's attractive qualities at first sight... but he wouldn't have audibly gasped when he first saw her, and then proceeded to act like the creepiest creeper who ever creeped.

If he was the only paladin who started as a priest instead of starting as a soldier, I'd give an explanation as to why he's supposedly the best commander out of all the paladins. Maybe not have him start as Lothar's second, but have Turalyon distinguish himself at Blackrock Spire after Lothar is killed.

And when that event happens, do not have Turalyon's first instance of wielding the Light be when he realizes the orcs are all aliens who deserve to be exterminated completely. At least not if we want to go the current lore direction we're at.

His relationship with Alleria can grow and develop gradually throughout the course of Tides of Darkness and Beyond the Dark Portal. They don't actually get together until after they are all stranded on Draenor.

(This also means that if Arator exists, he grew up on Outland and Turalyon knows about him--and that's also how Danath would know him. You're welcome.)
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:03 AM
Kyalin Raintree Kyalin Raintree is offline

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Varian's characterization in Wrath should have been retained.

Back then, he was controversial and flawed, while still able to give reasons for his position. He was compassionate, but also not afraid to stand up for what he believed in, even if he knew that he was the only one taking that position. He got angry, he felt pain, and he made mistakes.

I'll mention that this was overblown at times. The point where he hits Anduin comes to mind, but on the whole, I miss Wrath's Varian.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Anansi View Post
Why not both?

I very much doubt this thread will have an impact on Blizzard's writing department, so I'm not really throwing SoL the reins so much as asking SoL where'd they take us if I did.
I might just be being picky here so ignore me, but I feel like if we're actually changing who these characters are and how they think, rather than just altering the events that happened to them, then we're making them into someone else.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:07 AM
Mutterscrawl Mutterscrawl is online now

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Garrosh would've been in training as a grunt under Saurfang in Northrend, balancing the new horde's tactics and old fashioned orcish aggression, with hints of his earlier hesitation from Nagrand slowly dissipating.

His relief that Grom killed Mannoroth would've been tempered by the knowledge that he killed Cenarius while under demonblood and that the nelf conflict has hurt orcish development.

He'd have a willingness to go to war, and wouldn't put diplomacy as a higher priority than Horde prosperity, but he wouldn't think they were mutually exclusive.

He wouldn't be a racist dick either I mean really where did that come from?
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:08 AM
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Well, I don't presume to be able to improve those characters, so I won't even start. What I'll say, though, is that I think that the Forsaken's story would have benefited from more characters like Valimar Mordis. Former human noblemen who, while loyal to Sylvanas, are unable to let go of their lifestyle as humanity's leaders. Forsaken who have more ambitions than just serving the Dark Lady. People that occasionally oppose her and keep her in check, through their politicking. It would be even better, imho, if they had their own keeps, not unlike Scholomance, and troops.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:11 AM
Anansi Anansi is offline

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Originally Posted by Sarahmoo View Post
I might just be being picky here so ignore me, but I feel like if we're actually changing who these characters are and how they think, rather than just altering the events that happened to them, then we're making them into someone else.
Well, yes. That's the point.

Many of us are dissatisfied with the characters Blizzard has given us. This thread is for hypothesizing better ones.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:32 AM
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Varian- In Cata he's a firm but fair military leader. He wants to destroy the Horde's military, though would not turn down a peace offering, provided the terms included returning lost land. While not willing to try out WMD's, he is more than willing to green-light a thousand Taurajo's if it is required to defeat the Horde military- he doesn't want to harm the civillians of the Horde, but he's not going to pussyfoot around them either, especially if they try to fight back.

In MoP (assuming that Theramore is not nuked, but only barely defended), he starts upping the ante. Garrosh saw a (temporary) peace deal not as a stepping stone to a final resolution, but a chance to unbalance the Alliance. At this stage the very least he will do to Garrosh is throw him in the Stockades and forget about him. He still does not wish to eradicate the Horde, but he will make it clear that any peace deal with the Alliance will involve sacrifices from the Horde's end to prove their commitment, and any attempts to reject peace and reconciliation will be met with swiftly and efficiently.

Jaina- In Cata we see a more proactive Jaina- She does rather more to both combat the Horde militarily and negotiate with them, often times pledging her support should the "minor" leaders wish to rise up against Garrosh, who she firmly places the blame upon. Indeed, she is rather more cautious in attacking targets with a heavy civillian presence, and indeed refuses to personally lead such attacks. It is Jaina who we see negotiating and securing the temporary peace deal that allowed the Alliance and Horde to work together to defeat the likes of Ragnaros and Deathwing, and who then is preparing to negotiate a final peace deal with Garrosh attacks Theramore.

In MoP, again, Theramore isn't destroyed (Really, it felt like an excuse to let the Horde players get an awesome moment, and turn Jaina "crazy" so Varian and Anduin can be all perfect), but severely damaged and barely held in a siege. From this point, Jaina refuses to be involved in any peace deal that allows Garrosh to hold any position of power in the Horde. Further, her trust in the remaining leaders of the Horde (as well as Thrall) is severely damaged, and she is less willing than Varian to take on a temporary Alliance with any Horde rebels- at least, not without assurances that contingency plans are in place, and that the Horde's to take the brunt of the casualties. However, she does still wish to be careful with penalties and around civillians, feeling that it is their leaders who need to be punished, and wants to retain "support" from the common horde member.

Not really happy with that (They end up too similar, still somewhat "Jaina angry, Varian more peaceful), but hopefully at least closer to how they should have beem.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:34 AM
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Well, yes. That's the point.

Many of us are dissatisfied with the characters Blizzard has given us. This thread is for hypothesizing better ones.
Why not just create entirely new characters then? I'm just saying, why rely on the original names and histories if we're trying to do our own version of the story?
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:37 AM
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Why not just create entirely new characters then? I'm just saying, why rely on the original names and histories if we're trying to do our own version of the story?
Because the point is these characters didn't have to be so awful. The story could have succeeded with these characters, if Blizzard had characterized them a bit more thoughtfully.

You're getting a bit too Ship of Theseus about this, I think.
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I was probably just upset about the Horde fleet in the Second War.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:39 AM
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Why not just create entirely new characters then? I'm just saying, why rely on the original names and histories if we're trying to do our own version of the story?
Because "Kill off every major character and lose everything we liked about them while replacing them with completely new characters" A) sounds like hard work, and B) seems like a waste of previous characterisation. Why not modify an existing framework instead of tearing it down and building a new one? If the leaders were mostly good characters until Blizzard decided "let's completely change them so we can make one a total hero!", why not remove the latter changes and keep the good characterisation?

Would you say, given the chance to rewrite MoP and Cata "Well, Varian and Jaina and *random character* are X given the old version of MoP and Cata, so I need to work out how to meaningly kill them off so I can get a whole new character in"? Because that's what you're saying.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:00 AM
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I'd have Garrosh be a pragmatic fellow above all. Like in his short story where he coldly analyzed the global political situation and realized that the Alliance needs to be taken down a peg. Not because he hates them, he personally cares very little for them, but because they are ahead in power. So make pragmatic strategies aimed at improving the (un)life of the Horde at large at the expense of outside elements, be they third party, neutral or Alliance.

Internally I'd have him retain some of his life long insecurities from Outland, because frankly things like that don't just go away after one motivational speech. As such he would be overly cautious and uncertain, however recognizing this he would overcompensate with occasional recklessness which would be his most glaring flaw, but after our PC works with him over the patches and expansions we'd catch glimpses of the inner uncertainty.
If we want to go a step deeper into his psyche then make him a basically apathetic person, who then gets to feel the rush that power over people brings (when Thrall gives him a taste of true grandeur in Orgrimmar). And he longs for it, needs it even, and this keeps on clashing with his basic, passive, personality. To avoid the crash, such as, he now realizes, he felt when he could go no further in Nagrad he constantly needs to advance and attain greater power and prestige, fueling his ambition.

His character evolution would entail working through these issues through cleverly written encounters as plot dictates. Conversely as he shakes off his uncertainties, and since he was a decent leader to begin with, his arrogance would rise. Eventually plateauing and becoming a permanent fixture of his character. Not overly annoying, somewhat endearing even as he struts about proudly with the PC as his honorguard, but his ego would be used to trick him, probably in the climactic finale of his story arc, to allow him to return to his pragmatism, to balance and claim his personal victory.
If we include an underlying addictive thirst for power, he would probably get stonewalled midway and experience a horrible crash, his uncertainties and despair returning with a vengeance. To get out of this he would have to find a reason to live outside of personal prestige, a cornerstone to fall back on when his primary motivation fails him.

Now the racism dimension he had in canon doesn't really flow naturally into my characterization. It is not inherently bad, in truth pragmatic as he is he could fake congeniality with the other races until he was in a position where orcs no longer need those races (i.e. after defeating Alliance and others). But that doesn't work too well with the MMO format because that immediately implies that any camaraderie he showed with the non-orc PC was untrue, conniving and even malicious. And that goes on top of the actual racism which is hardly an endearing trait to begin with. Again not something that would work in a MMO.

Not overly elaborate though I feel a Garrosh like this would be a good character to explore the Horde through. The PC tags along with him as he completes his duties for the Horde but at the same he is a tool and an analogue to explore the Horde though. His insecurities are mirrored by those of the faction as a whole as it comes to terms with its past and tries to understand what it needs to become.
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:09 AM
Noitora Noitora is offline

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Garrosh was right, but needed to be reigned in. The other leaders were wrong and should've learned loyalty and progression while cooling down Garrosh's anger.

Sylvanas should be the Lich Queen, but without the magic powers. Appeal to the Forsaken based on logic not emotion and recruit the leftover Scourge and CotD.

Baine should've been a middle ground between Cairne's peacefullness and Garrosh's warlust.

Varian should've learned to control his anger through his friends and soul-searching and not some magic ritual.

Genn should've died and let his son take over, or Genn lives but receives the ritual which makes him younger or feel younger.
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Old 07-10-2013, 02:40 PM
Taintedmage Taintedmage is offline

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I've pretty much painted it before but I'll do so again.

Garrosh goes to war due to famine.
He wants what's best for the Horde and because of the Cataclysm he goes to war with the Alliance in order to secure food for his starving people (the end of trade with the Nelves keeps his people starving).
Garrosh is a well meaning and charismatic leader, he does not war for war's sake in this version.

As he wages war he uses increasingly vile but effective ways of winning battles.

Eventually Garrosh's tactics rub his allies the wrong way and the Horde civil war starts with the rest having grown weary of the war.
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Old 07-10-2013, 02:55 PM
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Quote:
He wants what's best for the Horde and because of the Cataclysm he goes to war with the Alliance in order to secure food for his starving people (the end of trade with the Nelves keeps his people starving).
Garrosh is a well meaning and charismatic leader, he does not war for war's sake in this version.
Poor, poor starving orcs. Tides of War explains that their marketplaces were full with fish. I guess orcs have a very sophisticated menu.

And those mean little meddling night elves! How could they not give the orcs the wood they needed to eat?

On a serious note, the orcs weren't starving and Ashenvale had nothing to do with that.
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Old 07-10-2013, 03:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Kyalin Raintree View Post
Varian's characterization in Wrath should have been retained.

Back then, he was controversial and flawed, while still able to give reasons for his position. He was compassionate, but also not afraid to stand up for what he believed in, even if he knew that he was the only one taking that position. He got angry, he felt pain, and he made mistakes.

I'll mention that this was overblown at times. The point where he hits Anduin comes to mind, but on the whole, I miss Wrath's Varian.
He never hit Anduin. People act like Varian fucking backhanded him when in fact all he did was squeeze his arm, something that literally every parent has done at least once.
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Old 07-10-2013, 03:24 PM
Nazja Nazja is offline

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He never hit Anduin. People act like Varian fucking backhanded him when in fact all he did was squeeze his arm, something that literally every parent has done at least once.
Even if he had backhanded him, it wouldn't have made him a bad parent. While not commendable, such things can happen. He's just human, after all.
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Old 07-10-2013, 03:27 PM
Noitora Noitora is offline

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Even if he had backhanded him, it wouldn't have made him a bad parent. While not commendable, such things can happen. He's just human, after all.
I'm pretty sure backhanding your kid across the face is bad.

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  #24  
Old 07-10-2013, 03:29 PM
Nazja Nazja is offline

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I'm pretty sure backhanding your kid across the face is bad.
I did say that it's not commendable.
Everyone is capable of committing errors though. Now, if we'd been told that this is a common occurrence...
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Old 07-10-2013, 03:34 PM
Zaelsino Zaelsino is offline

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I'm pretty sure backhanding your kid across the face is bad.

No one deserves the wrath of Jeremy Kyle.
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