Thursday, December 11, 2008

Trans-gender WoW

Ta-Nehisi on the new Blizzard option to allow people to re-customize their characters(including gender):
Yeah, they really are. I'm actually playing as a belf chick now, and a week ago, I would have gladly welcomed the chance to wear the pants again. But then something happened. The other day I was doing some PvP in Alterac Valley, when I got into it withe a fellow hordie who kept whining about paladins. It got pretty heated, to the point that I told him I wish I was till Alliance so I could come and kill him. Yeesh. He was prolly a 13 year old kid--at least judging by his response, which was "Get back in the kitchen. Hoes don't play Warcraft!"

It then occurred to me that I, for the first time in my life, had been the target of a sexist remark. And then I started seeing the cool thing about playing a girl in an MMO, the chance to experience life through the eyes of someone else. You guys know me--I'm all about seeing the world in other ways. This is, of course, an imperfect experience--half the chicks running around in WoW are kids who want to watch the back-side of a draenei while the farm.

LOL.

When I first started playing WoW, the gender of your t00n was actually a fairly big deal. Now, I was in my twenties and pretty confident in my sexuality (I wore nail polish for a while there), so the "R U GHEY!?" arguments against a male having a female character never held much weight for me... but some my nonchalance also probably came from being a little too old for the MySpace Generation, where a high percentage of flirting and hook-ups originates online. I'm playing a game, first and foremost... and utilizing a 3D chat room to make friends and meet people somewhere way down at the bottom... so the idea of having a character that "represents me" doesn't really enter into my skull. It seems though, that over the years, as it's become completely obvious that 9 out of 10 times that smoking hot Night Elf with the physically impossible proportions is a 32 year old male biomedical engineer... any previous stigma has basically disappeared.

But anyway... if you always wished your 73rd level gnome warrior had been born a girl instead of a boy, now is your chance to rectify that for a mere $15.