Historicity and WoW

In his excellent book "Man in the High Castle", Philip K. Dick talks about items and historicity:

She said, 'what is "historicity"?'

'When a thing has history in it. Listen. One of those two Zippo lighters was in Franklin D. Roosevelt's pocket when he was assassinated. And one wasn't. One has historicity, a hell of a lot of it. As much as any object ever had. And one has nothing …. You can't tell which is which. There's no "mystical plasmic presence", no "aura" around it.

[The Man in the High Castle, pages 65-66]

Why can't our World of Warcraft items have that aura?

We as players already do hang on to items for non-game reasons. Every time you hear someone say: "I'll never get rid of my full MC raiding set"–that's exactly what they're talking about. I have far too much of my bank taken up by items that won't be used anymore, but I would never destroy or sell (examples: for me, the Halo of Transcendence, which only dropped after six months of farming Onyxia; for my wife, her Molten Helm, which was the guild's first one, and all of her friends farmed the mats and gave to her as a big surprise).

Blizzard has an extremely small step in this direction already: "crafted by". Go farther! Give us some in-game support; pay attention to the details and show them to us on call.

Think of those Sunday mornings when you're poking around the bank, wouldn't it be great to ctrl-rightclick a favorite old item to get a little window with the following:

Pauldrons of Wild Magic looted on 2008/04/10. You were in the guild X of Y. It was your second time defeating Quagmirran in Heroic Slave Pens. You were grouped with Yourbestfriend, Theguildmaster, Drunkbutfun, and Someonesannoyinguncle."

I know I would love this. Is it just me?

More Words!

4 thoughts on “Historicity and WoW”

  1. Personally, I wish they'd give us some form of token housing or an armor stand or something so we can set our sets of gear up on it. So we can look at it and sigh in happy remembrance. Because really, we wouldn't keep our cool stuff all haphazardly scattered about the floor. We'd have it on an armor stand and a weapons rack or something! :)

    1. @kikidas – Pssh, all my gear would end up in a pile in the corner. That'd actually be a funny form of bank management–you're trying to get ready to raid, and your virtual toon is rooting through a closet of virtual clothes:
      "Where Did I Put That Belt!"
      "The green scaly one, with the skull?"
      "No no, the other scaly one, with the claw! The kinda rawr one?"
      "How's that again?"
      "You know, rawr?"
      Ok, maybe not.
      But I actually like seeing other people at the bank, it's like the only place you actually bump elbows with most everyone else playing. I think that might be why they're slow to implement guild/player housing. Everyone in their own little instance? Meh.

  2. Oh I'd really love that. Get a help to remember. I already like drop gear much better than badge gear. It means something. If they could help us keep the information it would even better.

    And… (off topic) I like Dick as well!

    1. @Larísa – I agree entirely about badge gear. It's a great addition to the game, but it's empty on the historicity scale.

      And yet, token drops are perfectly fine because they're immediately converted right after the raid, and then cheerily linked to guild chat: "Look at my new hotness!" Everyone: /cheer.

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