Monday, May 24, 2010

The Knockdown

So, just in case you haven't noticed, Moonkins are ridiculously socially awkward. They stick out in any crowd. Hell, we use them as easy 'stand here' markers on fights where raid icons are scarce, and people get mad when I use noggenfogger and they can't find the travel size boomkin. They're giant, covered in feathers AND fur, have horns/antlers and beaks and a tail, and they stand there looking from side to side, wondering why everyone is staring. They probably smell too.

Aside from that, they don't really fit in for other reasons. They make ridiculous noises in melee combat. They put their feet in the macaroni. They stand up in side cars, for crying out loud. Come on Blizzard, think of the baby moonkins that are going to be left motherless and fatherless by all the reckless accidents. I shudder to think of the moonkins with giant chunks missing from their beaks, broken horns and antlers, giant casts on their broken, giant feet! OH THE HUGE MANATEE! (get it?)


Of course, the agile boomkin would shift into flight form upon flying out of the sidecar. But until the flight restrictions are lifted from Azeroth, there's going to be many a maimed moonchicken running/limping around.

Anyways, time to get to the point of this rambling.

Moonkins are... well... different. And not just in looks, but in game mechanics. For those of you that have always played a class where the only thing you can do to change your appearance is get a new hairstyle or switch up your tabard, shapeshifting changes a lot of about the game. For a long time, mechanics like Bone Spike would have landed the moonkin not in a sprawled out posture like they are now, but either standing as they normally would or on their back in the graphic as standing. Moonkins used to just stand there after a /kneel emote. If I remember right, when the /cower graphics came out, the moonkins were left wanting for the first couple weeks. Granted cats and bears lack a lot in the same way, but quadrupeds don't kneel. As a biped, the moonkin is in a unique shapeshifting position (do they trees count as bipeds with all those roots?). A lot of this may be the same for trees, but as my healing days ended with the abandonment of MC, I honestly have no idea.

Now, this may seem like a pointless rant, but there actually is an aspect of game play that is affected by all this. As you may have keenly guessed by the title (good for you!), it's the Knockdown.

Now, this mechanic isn't particularly prevalent in boss fights today. Not a single boss in ICC has a knockdown ability, but there are a couple trash packs that have such tricks up their sleeve. And I'm not talking about knockbacks here, just plain ol' falling down due to a bosses ability. On Ahune, the Summer solstice special boss, it's caused by the ice. On other bosses, it's an earthquake type mechanic. Whatever the cause, though, if you don't play a moonkin (or perhaps a cat or a bear or a tree), you fall down. Moonkins, however, just stand there looking stupid. Usually it's accompanied by one of the idling side to side glances that a moonkin will inevitably do after standing on one spot for too long.

Now, don't get me wrong, this isn't a big deal. It's just something that I notice when it happens. I don't usually realize there's been a knockdown, and as such, I end up pounding keys and screaming at my computer, wondering why I'm not casting. Inevitably, I think that I've turned my character away from the boss with a stray mouse click, that I accidentally hit R and I'm whispering someone "2222555543555555222222"(If you're curious, 2=Wrath, 5=Starfire, 4=Moonfire, 3=Insect Swarm), or that I'm DCing off the face of Azeroth. Whatever the case may be, it's something that I notice on a regular basis. It happens often enough that it makes me wonder how hard it would be to put in a falling over graphic for Moonkins.

Though perhaps without the mechanic of falling over, those moonkins tossed from the sidecars might not be so bad off after all.