World of Warcraft and other Massively Multiplayer Online games (MMOs, for short) have long since been a beacon of hope for the friendless, the obsessive, or the bored among us. Now, thanks to an article in Monday's New York Times, MMOs have become a bastion for TERRORISTS. Or, more likely, bored NSA operatives grinding for experience and writing off their monthly subscriptions as a "work expense."
Whatever the case, the major media has had an odd relationship with MMOs over the years, since their inception in the mid-80's to their unexpected mainstream success over the last decade. Here's a look at seven other strange news stories to come out of the various MMO universes!
You never want to lose a staring contest with an ape. Or wait, are you supposed to play dead? We forget. Why you would trust us for animal survival tips is your own problem.
Entries will be pretty basic as I plan a funeral today...but I couldn't let y'all not see this.
Very sudden, unexpected, close death in the family just happened to me. It's throwing me off a bit.
Please talk amongst yourselves while I remain dumbfounded.
"Mr. Forthright" is a deceptive name for this fellow - many of the lies he suggests telling your kids to cover up the bigger lie of Santa Claus are anything BUT forthright. Which calls his credibility so much into question that maybe there is a Santa Claus after all. Because who are you gonna trust - a supernatural dude who sneaks into your house every year and watches everything you do, or this old bastard?
McBeth Go Dutch, young man
I've been seeing signs that resemble non-ironic versions of the one above for years; now it seems at least one government-associated entity has decided to take that deal. Amsterdam's Rainbow Foundation, a publicly subsidized organization to help the poor, homeless and mentally disabled, is finding great success in a program that gives people 5-6 beers a day, free lunch, half a packet of tobacco and ten Euros in exchange for picking up trash. (I can't speak for Holland, but generally in Europe "a beer" means a pint, rather than the smaller 12-oz cans and bottles Americans are used to).
And here I thought blogging was the only job you could do on that many beers.
The cleaning teams are forbidden from drinking while out on the street, but Mr. Schiphorst and his work mates say they get enough beer before they set out in the morning and during their lunch break to keep them going.The amazing part to me: the workday begins at 9 a.m. That's counting on some functional alcoholics.
Now, if you want to get all the juvenile delinquents off the streets as well, start paying people in porn.
Well, that was unexpected. I hardly thought the official still I posted yesterday would actually be a clearer look at our favorite nuclear beast than anything else in the new teaser. It seems to my eye, in fact, that almost every glimpse you get of him comes from the proof-of-concept trailer that's a year and a half old by now.
Futurama Season 8 - The final season (for now, anyway) of the best sci-fi cartoon about a delivery service ever made (sorry, Kiki, but yours is more fantasy than sci-fi!) gave us some great "classic" cartoon spoofs, a happy ending for Zoidberg, and a pitch-perfect finale that turned the entire series into one big, closed loop. Upending the classic Buck Rogers formula by having the man lost in time turn out to be just as much of an awkward, slacking dork in the future as he was before, it nonetheless showed in the end that even this ostensible loser could find vindication on a personal level. Also it gave us hope that every pop-culture icon we love today will be preserved as a head in a jar 1000 years from now - as smart a satirical device about Gen-X nerddom's inability to let go of childhood things as has ever been a running gag. Wow, that was a tortured sentence. I think I pulled it off correctly, though.
One thing that astonishes me sometimes is the people who want Futurama to keep coming back again and again while decrying The Simpsons for outstaying its welcome. Either a show dies a hero, or lives long enough to become the villain.
Doctor Who: The Day of the Doctor - Okay, so apparently this is some English show that people like. Can't say I ever heard anything much about it, though. (Psst: both minisodes are included.)