Breakfast Topic: Faction Pride

I remember the night of January 15, 2007. I stood outside a game store in the bitter cold anxiously awaiting the doors opening so we could get our hands on a shiny new copy of the freshly launched Burning Crusade. There were probably thirty people there, and of course the conversation was all about World of Warcraft. The air was tense between proud members of the Alliance and the Horde. Most players identify strongly with one faction or the other. It was strange to me how the faction rivalry crossed over into the real world.

I play Horde. I've been known to wear a t-shirt that says "Real Women Roll Horde." I've tried playing Alliance characters, and it just doesn't work for me. My real-world friends who play WoW also play on Horde side. I gravitate toward fellow followers of Thrall. Recently I've started a new job where a number of people play the game. Much to my surprise, I've found some Ally players that I actually like.

There seem to be a lot of stereotypes of players on either faction: Allies are kiddies and goody-goodies; Hordies are bloodthirsty, basement-dwelling jerks who don't even play nicely with each other. If I come across someone who seems like a total stooge, the thought, "That guy probably rolls Alliance." crosses my mind. I've discovered that these are merely overgeneralizations and there are great players and great people on both sides. Maybe I won't pick fights with chicks who play gnome when Wrath of the Lich King is released.

What's your experience with faction rivalry beyond Azeroth?

This article was originally published on WoW Insider.