Friday, August 23, 2013

Day 25: Culture


Kellaen visits the Burning Legion Museum in the Exodar. She didn't see the sign that read "No Horses Allowed."

The things I think about in between the realms of sleep and wake: I realized I had never seen a human in Azuremyst. Not once. Of course I know all races have visited Azuremyst, I mean afterall, I'm sure there's some holiday thing, like the Noble Garden stuff, the forces players to visit. But otherwise, no. No one goes there but baby shamans and paladins, equipped with standard-issue horns and hooves.

When considering the topic of "culture" in Azeroth, it's as endless and rich as any anthropologist's dream. Every possible aspect that encompasses culture: food, language, clothing, holidays, traditions, expectations, restrictions: the details and study of the various cultural aspects reach near infinity, from the mugs of ale in a Dwarven inn, to the "Yo!" from Goblins. We players are comfortable in Azeroth because we can find connections and identify with so many of the same cultural motifs. I for one love going to the Darkmoon Faire and eating anything fried. If only they had corn-on-the-cob like I remember it from the Texas State Fairs. Virtual food as no calories, so that's a bonus.

One place that is almost its own realm/separate game is Pandaria. I have often wondered if its Asian influences both delight and sometimes horrify Asian players. That generalization, too, is completely unfair. I spent a brief time with the NCTA, and one word we were never to utter was "exotic." That word tends to underscore stereotypes of "other." The discussion of culture is a complex one, that's for sure. We all live in micro and macro cultures: how I clean house or what I make for dinner is influenced not only by my upbringing, but what is out there in my grocery stores.

Aside from Pandaria, all of Azeroth is a cultural smörgasbord, including Northrend with its DEHTA group and the gorloc Oracles. But even its scope is fairly limited between dead things, human things, and dwarf things of some variety. Oh, and proto-humans. Can't forget those.

But--most of the Eastern Kingdoms is human dominated. I still think a 7' tall hooven chick looks out of place in Stormwind, and for some reason, when I am in Kalimdor, no one looks out of place. The other great equalizer is the beginning quests in Acherus. All races are chained for the slaughter. Greeeaatt.....

So: take some time. Go visit a zone you haven't yet. Stop and taste the local foods, see the sights, speak with the natives. There are no five-star inns in Azuremyst though; don't want you to get too comfortable.

1 comment:

  1. I need to go there to upgrade some pets, I'll have to stop by town and shock the inhabitants. An outlander's in town!


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