My horde guild organized a raid on some Alliance towns last night. It was advertised as a blood drive (hee hee), and our plan was to march to Darkshire, stir up trouble by killing NPCs (and whoever else stood in our way), and if nobody came to defend, we’d move on to Redridge Mountains and Lakeshire. We went in hopes of the Alliance drumming up some defense and giving us a good fight. There were even plans of planting someone in Stormwind to alert folks to come defend if the message did not get out on its own.
There were 13 of us, mostly 70s but a few folks in their 60s and one very brave level 38 hunter. We laid waste to Darkshire and cleared out two of the buildings, and kept killing guards as they respawned to keep the local defense messages flowing. Just a few Alliance players showed up, and some even flagged, but they were no match for our small army. We ended up chasing them down, through the buildings in some cases, and all in all, it was really fun. After a few rounds of this, we decided to look for a better matched fight and moved on to the next zone.
At first, our march was slowed by respawning guards in Darkshire, but after we got further from town, were slowed by a rogue who would randomly sap folks in the raid. It was amazing. He didn’t attack, he just stealthed up, sapped, and the person would say “He got me!” and we’d all laugh about it and try to find him. We had a few hunters with us, so when he unstealthed at one point (don’t know if someone managed to tag him with a trap or whether he was just running off), we were able to get him. It was awesomely fun for us, and I’ll bet he got a charge out of it, too. Made me want to level my rogue!
Some unflagged Alliance 70s caught up with us, and marched with us to Lakeshire. We killed some NPCs (including the gryphon master), and then tried to fortify at the end of the bridge near town. When the Alliance got a sizeable group toegher, they all flagged up and the real fight began. We were on the side of the bridge near town, and they were coming at us from across the bridge. A second group of them attacked us from the side, coming from town, so we moved up the hill a bit. That’s when the guards stormed us. Between all the guards and the growing number of Alliance 70s, they eventually obliterated us all, but lemme tell ya… it was FUN. It was a great fight. At that point, we decided to unflag and wait before resurrecting because a bunch of folks had to log off, and with no reinforcements coming, there was no way we’d get our bodies back anyway.
While we were waiting, one of the funniest moments of the night… There was an gnome called Bilbo wandering unflagged along with the group, just watching. He’d been lingering since we were in Duskwood and we were all hoping he’d flag up so we could kill him, just because of the name violation. When we were all standing there in ghost form, he finally got the nerve to flag up!! One of our shamans seized the opportunity. He quickly resurrected, killed Bilbo, and was of course destroyed in short order by the 20 other Alliance standing by, but he said it was totally worth it. Hee hee hee… many chuckles in vent over that one.
Mr. Ess didn’t come along for the raid, but he watched a bunch of it, and this morning we were talking about it a bit more. He said that I had to acknowledge that while it may have been fun, what we did was griefing.
“Well, that wasn’t our intent,” I explained. “We were looking for a fight.”
“But you have to admit it was griefing.”
“We were hoping to get something going with some 70s that showed up. We weren’t killing the NPCs just to make the lives of the lowbies difficult.”
“Yes, but that’s still what you did. That’s griefing.”
I recounted the time he and I were in Thousand Needles, standing at that little camp, getting ready to turn in a quest when Night Elf druid passing by smoked the NPC in one shot with his moonfire, waved to us, and rode off. Now THAT is griefing. Mr. Ess said I had to admit what we did was griefing, too, or else I’d be a hypocrite. What about the folks that wanted to use the gryphon master in Lakeshire?
“Ok, it wasn’t our intent to grief anyone, but I can understand if people felt griefed by what we did.”
“That’s like saying you’re sorry if someone was offended. Not quite the same as saying you’re sorry.”
“I definitely don’t feel bad about what we did. We had fun, and I think the other folks that showed up to fight did, too.”
“That’s fine, as long as you admit it was griefing.”
Ok, fine. Last night, we undoubtedly griefed somebody, intentionally or not, so that made us griefers. I was part of that group, so technically, I am a griefer. Fair enough.
It is interesting to think about though… I still believe intent should be considered, but maybe that’s just me defending my actions. I think there’s a difference between intentionally trying to make another player’s life difficult and what we did last night. I can hear in my brain the level 15 me standing there in the Crossroads saying, “Why can’t those Alliance *&#^@#’s go roll on a PvP server instead of hassling us?” I can see now that maybe they weren’t trying to inconvenience us, they were just hoping to get some defense out there for some world PvP. They don’t want to PvP all the time, as on a PvP server, just a taste now and then. Take out the NPCs to alert the opposite faction to your desire for some bloodletting, and wait for the defense to show up. Why not go pick on someone your own size? You want NPCs that are easy to kill… you want the focus to be fighting the opposite faction, so you pick an area where you can swat the respawning NPCs like flies.
It’s not for everyone, I suppose, but I can see both sides of it now. And, I’m sure that wasn’t the last raid on an Alliance town that I’ll participate in. Apparently, I do like to partake in a little bit of griefing, even if my intentions aren’t mean. It’s fun! Sorry, Alliance. 😉