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Reader Comments (72)

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:16PM (Unverified) said

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*POSSIBLE SPOILERS*

I honestly don't know what the big deal is about this quest. So I suppose I have a similar thought process of the team that created it.

The upheaval over the whole thing makes it sound like your character is holding someone prisoner in a dark room, as they sit in a vat of water, whilst you electrocute them mercilessly, and scream at them for the truth. It is nothing like that, at all. The ONLY thing you're doing is what you'd be doing otherwise - fighting and killing crusaders. Just, instead, you talk back and forth to each other.

Is a bit of text really worth getting upset over? Shouldn't we be more concerned with the Forsaken trying to poison all of humanity as a kind of reflection of chemical warfare? An alternative to the quest might have been nice? But not because "omg-torture is bad", but for FUN. I found the quest to be tedious, personally. I guess I should be SHOCKED instead.

"Beyond even that, this quest does kind of break the lore aspect of being a good guy (Alliance) or a misunderstood good guy (Horde) when you're doing exceptionally evil things." - So does, like, -every- Death Knight quest you do. That's the whole point of the entire introduction. I guess I'm just too entrenched into the gaming world to think this is an issue.

*shrug*

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:18PM (Unverified) said

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SIGH, I thought we were up in arms over the introduction torture issue. Apparently not - so ignore my comments.

I've seen some people complain about that quest and don't understand why. Carry on!
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Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:32PM (Unverified) said

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And once again, Bartle has no clue what he's talking about, apparently. The quest is part of a chain, but it is not required to do the Nexus, or any other quest in the game except for the final quest in that chain where you save a Kirin Tor archmage from the Blue Dragonflight. I had run the Nexus several times before ever even coming across this quest chain.

The NPC in question was part of a group that had been capturing mages all over Northrend and sealing them up in tiny boxes to drain them of all their energy in an attempt to get the use of arcane magic back under control, primarily by torturing and killing all the mages they could that wouldn't submit to them. And in doing so they are causing major disruptions in the flow of magic in Northrend, causing the continent to start to break apart under the stress. This are not good people. These are not even sane people.

As far as not being able to say 'no' to the quest. Yes, you can. You can refuse to complete any quest in the game. Several of my characters flat out refuse to do certain quests (this being one of them) for various reasons depending on the character and their motivations. It means you can't do the final quest in the chain (which is very cool), but you don't suffer any ill effects otherwise.

Certainly it's a quest that makes you stop and think for a bit.. and it really should. I don't really think Blizzard included the quest to say 'oh look, torture is okay'. But more I think to point out that 'even people with the best of intentions will do things they don't approve of if they feel enough need to.'

In any case, do the quest or not, and take away from it what you will.

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 6:34PM (Unverified) said

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It is because Bartle sees this as a higher contemporary issue in the US, or does he just not understand all the killing and loot and genocide already prevalent in the dull, combat-oriented content of WoW and it's ilk? Maybe I understand his logic that it is a story and very deliberate and the other contexts for the evil characters casually dole out has become so much the status quo that it is ignored as having any true consideration to them from the developers. I do think that games in general do focus far too much on conflict and conflict in a very narrow sense, of war. MMOGs in general do not have the general philosophy of mechanics (RPGs are interesting if your opponents are interesting and often they rely on highly conplex plots) to conduct war or conflict on even a very entertaining way, let alone an introspective way. I will say that it is a very dark turn for WoW (Blizzard took a very dark and hateful universe of Warhammer and Americanised and dumbed it down for an RTS and to have something like this in a game with so many tiring pop-culture references, is quite strange, but is it much worse than a lot of things you have to do in WoW?)
I think it is an emotive issue, but I recall on a trial of WoW, I had to poison a prisoner (Without his knowledge) to see if a particular plague was any good and that was the low level affair I experienced on a trial account. (Granted I was playing an 'evil' character, but are not DEATH knights supposed to be evil too?)
I find it interesting though, aren't Death Knights supposed to be redeemed at some point in the quests? Where is the exploration in such a quick renounciation of guilt and repsonsibility? (So many characters are romantised that way, actually)

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:36PM Evy said

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The impression that I got from the quest is that it was deliberately designed to make you feel uncomfortable. It made me think about what the Kirin Tor are up to. Are they really the good guys? How far will they go in pursuit of their goals? Pretty far, it seems.

I felt the quest did a decent job of making me think about my actions and how it affected others in-game. It was uncomfortable, sure, but I thought it was nice to have something thought-provoking instead of "Kill 10 Fjord Rats" type stuff. It would have been nice if there were an alternative to torturing the guy. Unfortunately WoW has never been much of a "choose your own adventure" type of game. There's generally only one accepted outcome to each quest.

Lastly... I don't want to seem flippant, but don't take things too seriously. It is just a game, after all. If we're going to start nit-picking; WoW players have killed hundreds of thousands of innocent creatures and humanoids during our travails through Azeroth. A little torture is nothing compared to what we've already done!

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:41PM (Unverified) said

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You play a character that kills tens of thousands of humans and animals in his journey. Torture is pretty low on the list of immorality here, in my opinion.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2008 8:12PM (Unverified) said

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Agreed, ever roll an undead and poison the prisoner in the basement of the Brill Inn? Alliance has at least 3 of these "poison the prisoner in the dungeon" quests in Northrend alone. So if you're going to play with morality as your lead you'll have some tough times completing many quest lines. I admit that it seems kinda wrong but then again....this is a game and the "victims" are cartoons. So there, I'm over it and now I'm going to go kill some more.
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Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:51PM (Unverified) said

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I was very put off by the quest. It was as if they'd lifted content straight from the Milgram experiment (look it up if you don't know what it was). And yes, you can argue around the point by saying all the usual "it's only a game so don't have a cow" things -- but this was really unpleasant. And when you put it together with a couple of the Death Knight quests, you have some pretty questionable content in a game that's played by kids.

Posted: Dec 2nd 2008 8:44AM Ebylon said

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The game is Rated T, so it should be teenagers playing it, with their parents' consent. 'Kids' don't have a place in playing WoW.





Or Halo. >:|
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Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:56PM (Unverified) said

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I was very put off by the quest. It was as if they'd lifted content straight from the Milgram experiment (look it up if you don't know what it was). And yes, you can argue around the point by saying all the usual "it's only a game so don't have a cow" things -- but this was really unpleasant. And when you put it together with a couple of the Death Knight quests, you have some pretty questionable content in a game that

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:51PM TheJackman said

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Lol poor guy really need get a life its a game after all and yes you do kill tens of thousands of humans and animals in the journey. And later in the instance you kill even more.

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 4:55PM (Unverified) said

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Obviously he hasnt rolled a Death Knight yet :)

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 5:01PM Grok said

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I was surprised to see this article as I thought it would simply fly by the radar of most people. But I found myself feeling a bit at odds during this quest myself.

For the most part quests rely on the user killing enemies that are already hostile towards you. It's either kill or be killed. This quest is a bit different. The dialog back and forth while the torture occurs only made me more uncomfortable.

I understand that not everyone will feel as uncomfortable as I did, and that's fine. But Bartle isn't the only one who had a problem with this quest, so certainly there's something worth discussing here.

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 8:02PM (Unverified) said

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You don't have to finish the quests if you don't want to. I, for one refused to do the DEHTA quests because I think the promotion of PETA is laughable and stupid. I love animals, but meat is not murder. To each; his own.

Also, what about the quest where a Paladin is using the Light to mercilously torture a city mayor turned Scourge. Are we going to call foul on a poor innocent Scourge begin burned alive by light?
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Posted: Nov 25th 2008 5:04PM Wispur said

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Ummmm..... your not *required* to do any of the torture quests (yes, there are multiple). It's your choice.

Which do you want more, the reward, or to feel good about yourself? lol This shouldn't be a hard choice if you feel strongly against torture in a game.

Apparently most people choose the reward than get angry because someone gave them the option. That's just silly.

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 5:19PM Xtofer said

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"i wish i could bake a cake made out of smiles and rainbows and we could all eat from it and be happy."

But seriously, the quest does not prevent you from running The Nexus. If you don't want to do the quest, then don't. Whatever. Most of us that are sane know that the game won't influence our real lives. I didn't read that text and say "Oooh, that's something I should do when I want to find out some good info! Thanks WoW!"

Let's all grow up and stop walking on egg shells around stuff that's trivial.

Posted: Nov 25th 2008 5:33PM (Unverified) said

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I took the quest with my paladin, then stepped back and frowned while thinking about the situation. Torturing a captive just didn't feel right.

Before I could say or do anything about it, however, a rogue in my party went ahead and finished the particular quest for the rest of us...

Posted: Dec 2nd 2008 12:27PM (Unverified) said

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Yeah, blame it on the rogue :)
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Posted: Dec 3rd 2008 12:21PM (Unverified) said

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That's pretty awesome, because in my party (I am the rogue, my love is the paladin), the paladin and I thought about it, and I was the one who stepped back. He stepped forward, understanding that it was a quest to rescue people, and that this man was a block in that path.
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Posted: Nov 25th 2008 5:33PM Softserve said

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Despite Bartle's own comments, I do not think being able to say "no" to this quest is the same as not actually doing it.

Bartle's version of saying no to this quest implies that he expects to be able to finish it without actually being involved in the torture. He expects the player to be presented by some sort of dialogue choice or something. Something that branches off and

Simply not doing it is not the same here. That's not the same kind of "choice", to put it simply. This is particularly true when completion of the change requires this quest, as a few here have noted.

I've not done the quest and I doubt I'd be that bothered by it, but I think there's a very big distinction between what Bartle is suggesting and what others are. Programming in a choice with a consequence or result that affects the game is different from ignoring something.

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