Is Lore a Bore?



by Medeor




When I start a game, I pretend to
enjoy the lore. I show the typical desire to understand and care about
how the races evolve and how city centers rise out of hulking ruins, or
trees become a wondrous village.  But in the long run, I end up
wanting to know who I need to whack to get good loot. Then, I feel
guilty; a guilt similar to the guilt felt when receiving a handmade
object of someone's passion that you want to instantly put in the
attic. You want to show that you understand the intricacies of the art
and that you’re appreciative, but you don’t, and you aren’t.  



Meanwhile, there are people--heck, there are teams of people--diving
headlong into the job of writing compelling story and quest lines only
to have me start clicking the “Next” button so I can get my quest
rewards (imagine a kid and vacation, hopped up on Bawlz, hitting the
elevator button to get to the pool and you’ll get a feel for the fervor
with which I click). I wouldn’t have though much if the developers had
said, “Within the next patch you will see cats and dogs living
together.”  I would only question whether or not I could in fact
loot the aforementioned pets for furs or tasty giblets and phat lewt,
completely ignoring the fact that cats and dogs might not belong in
that scenario.



So now I will say I’m sorry and promise to give my undivided attention
to the over-arching story lines and follow them through to their
closure.



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hspace="4" vspace="2">Maybe the evolution of a gamer includes
deeper thought.  As I begin to mature and play more patiently,
perhaps I am entering my next phase of gamerdom.  At first gaming
was all about “Blam! Blam! Blam!” and “Did I Win?”  The story
lines for First Person Shooters are typically as thought out and
entrancing as a porn…err…adult movie.  Apparently adults don’t
care about storylines.  Maybe I’ve just become too adult? 
Well now I think it is time to revise this thinking and jump into the
deep end of the pool where lore and information run deep.



When I first started playing MMOs, it was all about progression. 
My goal was to level, then level and then level a little bit
more.  My mantra was to get me to the end-game as fast as
possible.  Some games go out of their way to draw the gamer in,
but I could usually avoid such offers and blow right by the lovely
scenery.  In my mind, I always flash to that scene in National
Lampoon’s Vacation when Chevy Chase and family are in a hurry to get to
Los Angeles and stop by the Grand Canyon, only to have Chevy bob his
head and quip “ Yep, there’s the Grand Canyon, let’s go.” 
Similarly in my questing, I couldn’t be bothered to witness beauty or
seek knowledge, since I had an errand to run.



As I am finally realizing, MMOs’ lack of a final chapter means that
there is no reason to skim through the meat of the story.  I
should take it all in and enjoy every last bite.  Have you ever
watched the fourth of July Nathan’s hot dog eating contest?  I
have, and it makes me wonder if I’ve been playing my games like
Kobayashi eats dogs.  Do you really think he tastes them? 
Worse yet, do you think he can even really enjoy them?  If this is
lost on you, google the term “Wacky Japanese hot dog eating contest
winner.”



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hspace="4" vspace="2">As my apology applies to all those great
side stories I’ve missed, I now pledge to stop and smell the roses, or
at least read the lore.  I’ve noticed in my last few gaming
sessions since my “awakening” that I’ve really enjoyed the quest
chains.  Quite a few times I’ve enjoyed the sense of humor used or
the sarcasm used – all in character – and it’s made me chuckle. 
These people spend a lot of time putting all of these threads together
and staying within the over-arching themes. It is truly an art.



The next thing you know, I’ll be ranting on the boards how a pending
addition to the game doesn’t flow with the lore and that the world as
we know it shall end.  To that I say, my forum name is $%&*@,
please feel free to moderate me.



Vanguard: Saga of Heroes promises to have a lush, green feel both
graphically and narratively (is that a word?). My goal is to witness
and catalog from the purple mountains and blue seas to the amber waves
of Thestran-grain. Join me in our travels as we seek to understand the
stories the authors provide, and maybe grab a few levels of advancement
here and there.



Are you a Lore Bore or do you collect every nugget of information and
attempt to guess at the future through the clues provided?  Sigil
Games Online has provided hints into the lore of Thestra, so stay tuned
for more about the lore.  Maybe we can chat about the back
story... after I’ve ready it.




Are
you fascinated by lore...

or right there with Medeor clicking the "Next" button?

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Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

About The Author

Karen 1
Karen is H.D.i.C. (Head Druid in Charge) at EQHammer. She likes chocolate chip pancakes, warm hugs, gaming so late that it's early, and rooting things and covering them with bees. Don't read her Ten Ton Hammer column every Tuesday. Or the EQHammer one every Thursday, either.

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