A Voice From A Warm Place: Dragonwrath Easter Egg in Mists of Pandaria

A blue dragon roars in Jade Forest.

I admit, I haven’t been using my beta access to its fullest since I got it a couple of months ago. The other night, however, a tweet came across my timeline regarding friending options and so I updated my game and hopped in to test it out. Afterwards, the person I was partied with and myself decided to fuss around with pet battles. I was flying around to look for critters to battle with my Spectral Kitten, listening to dance music very LOUDLY, when I heard it.

It was a woman’s voice saying something.

I blinked and looked around. Since I was still in Stormwind limits, I figured it must be an event with buggy zone sound. I asked in party chat if they had heard what I did and they said no. I wondered what it might be but I looked back in my chat log and saw this:

The warm embrace of Tarecgosa’s presence encircles you.

For anyone that doesn’t have a completed legendary staff, this is the text emote that the staff randomly pops up from time to time. I’ve always really loved that little touch; I saved Tarecgosa’s essence and now it is a part of me. It is there to comfort me when I need it. It’s like a little hug when I’m doing stuff in-game. My question then was, “Does this mean there are voice emotes as part of the staff now?”

Due to the addictiveness of pet battles I was in beta for another three hours. My emote popped up again and then I very distinctly heard her voice.

“Your deeds will live on forever in the memory of the blue dragonflight.”

I admit, I started freaking out (in a good way) at that point. I started doing a little digging and it turns out that according to the two MMO-Champion threads that I found (that only got a couple of responses, what gives?) that the staff has a random choice of 5-6 voice emotes when the staff says something to you. It seems like this little easter egg was added in a content patch at the end of July. I am really stoked about this, obviously, as a staff wielder and a dragon fanatic.

But what does it mean? My boyfriend pointed out that they’ve always done little Easter egg stuff with legendaries even after their relevance. (Remember what happened when you brought Atiesh into Shade of Aran’s room?) I want to think that it might be something significant; some additional lore might be down the road or us Dragonwrath holders might be allowed to keep our staves longer into the expansion. I know that this probably isn’t true and it breaks my heart to think that I will have to put down my wonderful staff in a couple weeks; I won’t hear Tarecgosa’s voice again unless I’m AFKing. This is just another regret along with having to weapon-swap just to turn into a blue dragon as well.

Getting a Dragonwrath was such a game-changing experience for me and not just because I had a piece of lore strapped to my back. My experience getting the staff and all the feelings that went along with was so important to me and validated a lot of things I felt about myself – that I was good enough, that I deserved this.  Add to this the fact that Blizzard finally decided to give a little more story to some of the female characters in their world (even if Tarecgosa’s time in this plane was limited) and I was a part of that? Mind-blowing.

So many times in game, hearing voices has meant that something evil was lurking around the corner, undermining our confidence in ourselves, our friends, our sanity. This is a distinct change from that and I am glad for it. I know this won’t mean much to most people, that it is just a collection of pixels, but it warms my heart. There is a wonderful lady dragon’s spirit watching over my gnome, protecting her. Cheering her on from another realm. I know that I will miss having this constant presence gone from my game after it being part of my everyday life for six months now. Still, I have a feeling she won’t be very far from my thoughts.

When I was flying up to the Skyfire to go to Pandaria this morning, I heard her whisper to me.

“Never give up.”

I won’t.

 

 

Then and Now: A Retrospective on the Author

I thought I said I wasn’t a fan of memes, but this was too good to pass up, especially as a long-time, vanilla player like myself. Vidyala over at Manalicious decided to talk about “then and now” when it came to such important things as her mage’s looks, her UI and even where she played. I’d consider myself pretty boring in that regard. My gnome hasn’t really changed much; there’s been some cosmetic differences in the 6 years I’ve played her, but I haven’t even been in a different guild!

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Love Is In the Air

Tarecgosa flies against a sunset sky, heart over her head.

Despite the fact that the in-game holiday has been going on for well over a week now, today is the real Valentine’s Day! I know that this day, even in gaming, is fraught with emotions at both extremes: the sappiness of couples in love and the bitterness of those who feel the holiday’s sting of loneliness or commercialism. I find myself somewhere in the middle of these poles, even if I’ve been in a long-term relationship for 3 years. I always look for an opportunity though to share my feelings and admiration for those around me, even if it isn’t always romantic. Making someone’s day feel great is something we should strive to do every day but a holiday reserved for it motivates me to be as silly and gooshy as possible. Maybe you should do the same today, even in Warcraft.

Let a flag-carrier go to the base just this once.
Give a lowbie some gold and bags.
Be polite to someone in Trade Chat.
Help someone out in LFR.
Point out a neat spot to explore to a guild-mate.
Craft a piece of pretty mogging gear for a friend.
Write an appreciative note to your raid leader.

These are all little parcels of love that aren’t consumerist or necessarily romantic and are sometimes oft-needed in our harsh gaming landscape.

What am I going to be doing today myself? Oh, this and that. My partner and I don’t really celebrate holidays overly much and we already spent the morning playing the Mass Effect 3 demo together (okay, so they played and I watched and provided useful color commentary) and sharing chocolates that I bought at Walgreen’s. That’s about as awesome as I could hope for. I know that I’ll probably be doing a guild-run LFR tonight and maybe some last-minute charm grinding for another Swift Lovebird. I bought one for myself cheap out of Trade chat, and had one that I purchased with charms to sell after the holiday was over. However, a guild-mate who has her daughter in our guild really wanted to give one as a present, so I concocted a scheme where we take the one I had and send it from an alt named after the daughter’s favorite NPC as a Valentine’s Day present. Stuff like making a kid and a guild-mate happy is a little more important than gold, as far as I am concerned.

I think I’m also going to spend some time leveling alts with new WoW friends and writing queer goblin fanfic.

Two fashionable goblin ladies hold hands.

Now onto Mandatory Sappiness!

To My Fans: Without you, there wouldn’t be a blog, it’d just be me prattling on and on. You give me enthusiasm, hope, laughter and motivation in piles. Interacting with an intelligent audience and being a voice to some of my fellow gaming nerds is what got me out of one of the hardest times in my life. I love all of you and you make me smile every time you comment or Tweet at me.

To My Guildmates: Not only has it been a pleasure being your officer and now guild master, but also your stupid friend. I don’t feel like we’re a guild so much as a family. I love all the stupid jokes we have, all the good times doing stupid things we do – LFRs, mount runs, exploring, talking on Mumble until late at night (11 PM). I love you even if you guys fill up the guild bank with gray items that I have to sell. do u even lift???1

To my RealID friends: Thank you for putting up in my insanity via status updates. Or responder spam from my boss mods. Or talking to me in general.

To my boyfriend: You don’t read my blog! I still love you anyways.

To Blizzard Employees: Thanks for making one of the best games I’ve ever played. Keep doin’ what you doin’.

To my haters: Y’alls my motivators. To the left.

Have a really amazing day guys. Hope you spend it with people you care about. But most of all, love yourself! It’s pretty groovy.