Blizzcon 2010 let gamers try Diablo III and World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, giving them a sneak preview of the cause of their next failed relationships. Tenacious D performed with Dave Grohl, hot girls costumed and professional Starcraft players baffled the non-Koreans with the fact that they exist. However, the real entertainment was at the Q&A sessions.
Let me explain what a Q&A session is: nerds huddle in a line, forming Swine Flunor, waiting to ask one question to the game developers. Now, some of the worst qualities of nerds are entitlement, lack of social skills and narcissism. I left out beard termites because I didn't want to frighten you -- beard termites jump in your mouth when you scream. My point is, this whole event is crazy because these aren't even ordinary nerds. They're outer fringe supernerds. If you give them a microphone and a license to talk about paladins, it's as damn crazy as you'd expect. But as I watched the chaos unfold, a pattern emerged. I realized when I translated their questions from Warcraft into English that they were all asking minor variations on the same eight questions. Here they are:
Nerd rage is an impotent, cushion punching thing, and there are rare people who behave in person exactly how they behave in Warcraft -- barking clumsy insults, standing in something that's killing them and blaming Blizzard for everything. You see, for every minor change the developers make to a gameplay mechanic, there's a guy sitting at home who knows they did it to destroy him. BlizzCon is their chance for payback. They ask fussy, nitpicky questions as if they're issuing a mortal challenge. As you can imagine, it's as crowd-pleasing as leaping off your prayer mat and calling Allah a pussy. What's exciting for everybody is that there's a solid chance these people will have to be forcibly dragged from the microphone by security. And when you're arrested for disagreements over Warcraft, that has got to be Christmas for the other inmates.
Inmate #2014410: "What are you here for, fat boy?"
Cloudwhisper of Darrowmere: "I'll have you know that I! Am a political prisoner! Blizzard keeps nerfing hunters and I! Had the guts to stand up and say no more! No one wanted to listen, but I! Wouldn't be silenced!"
Inmate #2014410: "Wow. Well I have to say that takes a load off my mind. A lot of guys can be deceptively dangerous when you start raping them.
... so ...
you ready to go then?"
Cloudwhisper of Darrowmere: "/sigh."
Some nerds create a bubble of intellectual superiority by removing everything that isn't them from their sphere of influence. It's easy to be a genius when you've convinced yourself that everyone else is an idiot, including the people that make your favorite video game. After years of community scrutiny and employees dedicated to fine-tuning every little number, more math goes into punching fake monsters in Warcraft than went in to fake landing on the Moon.
Despite this, or maybe because of this, there are still nerds who are certain they've uncovered the Da Vinci Code of logic errors when they find a mistake, even if that "mistake" is a subjective disagreement. These are the kind of nerds that make you sympathize with high school bullies. When they die alone, they go to a hell where their mouth is taped shut for eternity next to people who keep saying that Carl Weathers was in Star Wars.
Despite the fact that I have email folders named "Murder Threats (Hilarious)" and "Murder Threats (Gulp)," I don't think all nerds are bitter, angry people. A lot of them truly love the magical land they live in and came here only to prematurely ejaculate in front of its gods. Since they know better than to just blurt that they named their cat after them and run -- they ask strange, forced questions to which they already know the answers. Now I know what my date goes through when I pretend to be interested in her haircut so I can undo her bra.
"Um yes, I notice the Death Knight rotation is now perfect. So my question is: Are you ready to move in with me? I've already programmed your thumbprints into our home's biometric locks and this tube of lubricant won't expire for, let me see ... negative 17 days!? Crap!"
During the BlizzCon dance contest, this guy got on stage and gently hopped so hard that he shattered his own leg. His brittle bones shouldn't have come as a surprise to anyone. Without physical activity, the only way a human body can digest a Hot Pocket is by shedding layers of its own skeleton to battle it. Bones aren't the only thing that atrophy when you're in the World of Warcraft, though. You also lose your communication skills. For a lot of players, their only social interaction comes when they tell someone they spelled hommo wrong. Their brains have forgotten what's appropriate, and their mouths have forgotten how to talk. So their questions end up things like, "How do you physically disable your boners? They always happen when I'm afk plus my guild leader says I won't need them during the next arena season."