So, we all know that World of Warcraft can be an engaging experience. That’s engaging in the "your friends and family will never see you again" sense, though. As an MMO, it tries its hardest to let the player forge a detailed, fantasy-realistic existence for their avatar. Did they have to make alcohol cloud your judgment so realistically (and hilariously), though?
Ah, World of Warcraft. What an utterly hypnotic, all-encompassing, social-life-devouring beast you are. We’ve all heard stories of those who have slipped down the WOW rabbit hole, never to resurface. From then on, they’re a fearsome sorcerer of the Arcanist Society, answering only to the name Sauron Jr. or something.
What is it about the game that’s so appealing to so many? For the legions of MMO fans, they’re not just games. They’re a whole fantastical new existence. That’s an easy thing to retreat into. There’s a super serious side to all of this (as this intense IGN forum discussion about MMO addiction will show you), but there’s also something funny about how these titles can ape or rival our real lives.
A dragon-ish, elven fantasy experience World of Warcraft may be, but it’s got one thing right: alcohol is not our friend. This is true of a lot of games, where you can relax at an inn and enjoy a beverage or two. Some games, like Grand Theft Auto V, have sequences where your character has over-indulged a little, and visual effects will demonstrate this. Screen distortion, an odd, wobbly walking animation, that sort of thing.
In World of Warcraft, though, this concept is dialled up to eleven. As the Wowpedia details, ‘Drunk’ is a condition your character can be afflicted with, like a negative status. You’ll first be hit by ‘Tipsy,’ which is quite minor, but if you continue to indulge, you’re really going to be in some trouble.
Firstly, as with other games, your movement will become erratic, with involuntary changes of direction like your keyboard/controller’s on the fritz. Your typed messages will be affected too, with slurred typed words and hic! added to the ends of your sentences.
When your reach the ‘completely smashed’ condition, the true brilliance of World of Warcraft’s system is revealed. Just like in real life, your avatar’s judgment is impaired. In combat, mobs will appear to be lower-leveled than they actually are (literally, the display will reflect this), by up to five levels. The same is true in PvP, which… well, you can imagine the sorts of horrible effects this can have on players.
Sadly, you receive no XP bonus from defeating enemies that are a higher level in reality than they appear to be. You can involuntarily cast the Drunken Vomit spell, though, which is super gross and will leave you stunned for a moment. So there’s that.