My brother John is a level-80 hunter who absolutely abhors Chinese gold farmers and scrubs. If you know what any of that means, chances are you are a lonely little turd who spends far too much time bashing avatar skulls in World of Warcraft. He is unquestionably addicted to the game, and every time he tries to quit he’s back on the fucking thing three days later. John claims that he was within the top 50 players in the US at the high point in his illustrious WoW career. When I go back home to Florida I try my best to hold meaningful conversations with him, but he inevitably drifts back into some headset-facilitated argument about “flying mounts” or “gay faggots” with his fellow gamers. I try to relate to him as a brother, but I guess he’s just part of a generation that has no need for relationships in the physical realm. I remember a family trip where he refused to leave the hotel until the staff informed him that he wasn’t allowed to install his favourite game on the computers in the business centre. He recently told me that he quit playing, so I got him on the phone to call his bluff and attempt to understand why he loves WoW so much. Here’s our enlightening conversation.
Vice: Hey Clown Tits, what’s up?
John: Who is this?
It’s your brother. What are you doing?
What a surprise. I want to interview you for this World of Warcraft thing I talked to you about the other day.
Yeah, right this second. Is that OK?
I guess. I kind of quit though.
But aren’t you always quitting and coming back?
Yeah, I’ll try to be done with it but one day I’ll just be bored and start playing again. It sucks. I don’t even like the game anymore.
When did you start playing?
About a month after it came out.
What type of character were you when you started?
Is that what you’ve been the entire time?
Pretty much, but I play a hunter now.
I thought you said you stopped playing.
I still have it. It’s active. I just don’t log on that much.
What happened to the rogue? Did you sell it or what?
Yeah, for like $700 on eBay.
Tell me what level the rogue was and the gear it had and all that crap.
Well, I played the rogue before the expansion.
What the fuck does that mean?
It was at level 70, the highest level you could get at the time, but the expansion made the cap 80.
Uh, whatever you say, punchy. What kind of gear did you have?
Full gladiator gear. I pretty much just fought arena.
Dude, you have to explain all of this to me like I’m grandpa. Arena?
It’s like 2v2 3v3 5v5 …
So you just mean player-versus-player instead of fighting computer monsters or whatever the hell goes on in there.
But what does “gladiator gear” mean? I don’t understand.
It’s got, like, PvP stats and resilience. Resilience is what you need for arena, because it reduces the damage you take from critical strikes. If you have 400 back then it would probably be, like, a 20 percent reduction and then, like, you couldn’t decrypt 10 percent less or some shit. I don’t play anymore.
What the fuck are you going on about?
I don’t know.
OK. Who are the most annoying people in WoW – the most irritating guild or whatever it’s called?
There’s this guild called Goon Squad. They are on pretty much every server and they’re all really annoying.
Why are they annoying? What do they do?
They just like kill people all the time.
Who’s the most annoying player you’ve ever met?
All Chinese gold farmers suck dick.
What do those guys do?
A lot of the time they gain access to people’s accounts and they log on to them and go to general chat and spam their gold on other people’s accounts. They get their accounts spammed.
The only thing I understood in your answer was that they gain access to other people’s accounts. How do they get their passwords and shit?
They like phish their accounts for passwords. It hasn’t happened to me.
Are there any specific players who you hate and want to beat to a pulp in real life?
There are so many people who play the game that it’s hard to talk about just one person I don’t like, because I hate so many fucking people.
What do you usually do when you run into them?
I just start reaming and call my friends and shit, dude.
You fuck them?
What? No I storm them with my friends.
Have you ever met anybody in real life from the game?
My friend Matt and this kid Scott. I played with them for a while and didn’t know they lived close. Then I found out they lived nearby and started hanging out with them.
Are they cool?
Yeah, they’re pretty cool.
Have you porked any girls you met through WoW?
I met this one girl, but she lived too far away or something.
Did you guys talk dirty and stuff in the game? Like, “Oh, I want to lift up your codpiece and stroke your sword”?
You weren’t all, “Hey, I want to put my battle-axe in your shield” or whatever?
No. I don’t role-play.
What kinds of people partake in role-playing on there?
I don’t know. Role-playing servers aren’t as bad as people think they are, but people who actually do role-playing are fucking annoying.
Why are they annoying?
They are just stupid and pointless. They just stand there and don’t do anything.
Have you ever cheated in the game or hacked anything?
I bought gold one time, that’s it.
How much did you get?
Enough to buy a flying mount.
You can get this gladiator drake. I got the fastest one. It was like 310 percent.
What was 310 … you know what? Never mind. Just tell me about some of the slang you use on there so that I can stand a chance of deciphering this conversation.
Let’s see … people use “LFG” or “LFM”, which just mean that they’re looking for a group or looking for a member.
I don’t care about that shit. What do you say when you want to tell someone that they suck?
We call them a scrub.
Is that a reference to that old TLC song?
I don’t know. It’s just what you call a shitty player.
Why do you only stick to player-versus-player combat? Do you just want to kill people?
Because it’s what I like to do. It’s more fun.
Have you ever heard of anybody getting so pissed off that they try to find the person who killed their character so they can beat them up or something?
No. But one time I killed some guy who was in the air and he couldn’t get his body back, so he was talking to some game master. It was pretty funny.
Oh yeah, what do you think about game masters? Are they assholes or what?
They are useless.
Why do you say that?
Because they don’t help anyone. No matter what they say, “We can’t help you with that problem.”
What is the name of your character now?
What does that mean?
It’s just my name.
Did you just type in gibberish when it asked for a name?
Well the name of my first character was Vae and so I just made it Vaetwo. I don’t know.
How long have you had the hunter and what’s the level of the hunter?
I started the hunter after Wrath of the Lich King expansion came out. It’s level 80 and has full arena gear and shit.
Jesus dude. I’m going to hang up before my head explodes. Have a good one!