Friday, April 9, 2010

Gevlon's Hubris

If you're familiar with the "WoW Blogosphere" then surely you've heard of Gevlon, who posts rather unconventional ideas trying to tie World of Warcraft to real life psychological and economics.  In general I find his ideas and projects very interesting, although occasionally he'll make some observation and then draw some incredible logical leap that he leaves me -- and I assume the vast majority of his readership -- wondering just what the hell he's babbling about.

Gevlon's latest project is "Gankers United," where he's starting an alliance PvP guild on EU-Magtheridon, a server where the Horde outnumber Alliance several to one.  His theory is that a small group of smart, intelligent players can fight back against the Horde and inconvenience them in ways they never thought possible.  It's "guerilla warfare" at the WoW level, which is an interesting an idea.  At first he refused to accept any level 80 transfer to his project because he wanted to prove leveling in such a "hostile environment" is possible.  Well, he now has twenty level 80s in his guild, and in his last post, he's argued the fact that the Horde 'let this happen' means they're all collectively morons and slackers. 

Well Gevlon, sorry to say, but they let this happen because they didn't give a shit.  And while you're going to counter with, "not giving a shit is what morons and slackers do," there was honestly nothing to give a shit about.  A handful of alliance players leveling in Desolace is not cause to drop everything you're doing in WoW and start ganking them.  Basically what Gevlon is doing is the equivalent of this:

Suppose I'm reading and in the comments in one of the articles, I see someone say, "I am starting a new cult that will cause traffic jams for all Americans. I will get my legions of followers to take to all the freeways in America and drive exactly 5 miles below the speed limit. For every car we get stuck in a traffic jam I will earn 1 point, and every car that manages to drive past my traffic jam, I will deduct 20 points. But I will give you a chance, we will have to earn money to buy our cars first, we won't just use the cars we already may own."

(I'm using traffic jams are something that is very frustrating because not technically illegal, just like ganking).

Would you take to the streets and hunt him down? Would you immediately seek him out and drive past him to cause him to "lose 20 points"? Would you even know he existed?  I doubt it, unless you were reading the same arbitrary, obscure CNN article he posted in.  The idea that someone could get hundreds of people that would spend hours of their time clogging up roadways for any material impact is ridiculous. 

Four weeks later this same guy posts another comment.  He says, "Haha! I now have 20 followers and we have now all purchased large cars. Now anyone that already has a car can join us. The fact that nobody tried to stop us indicates just how M&S the American population are. They should be browsing every single piece of information on the web to find out about us. They should have harassed us at our jobs so we stopped earning money to buy cars. They should have found out where we drive and driven past us to get us -20 points. They'd rather do their jobs and see their loved ones than take action against us. They think in the worst-case they will still find ways to drive around us or just take side streets. Everyone is an M&S."

Nobody will spend any time trying to stop every crazy traffic-jam-causing cultist because the vast majority of them will have no impact on ANYONE'S life. Gevlon, have an impact. Make a difference. Cause them real, unbridled hardship and pain, and then judge their reactions.  Until then this is just another project like Ungeared -- amounting to nothing besides a handful of blog posts and accomplishments that nobody gave a shit about.

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