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Breakfast Topic: Is Azeroth's technology too advanced?

Marc Hobbs

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the AOL guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

The party agrees to meet just outside the dragon's lair at sunset for a surprise attack.

First to arrive is the Night Elf Allara; the huntress silently tests her bowstring, as the nightsaber at her feet opens its mouth for a huge yawn. Next is Grizz, the mighty Dwarf; he adjusts his plate armor carefully, tightening the straps. Then Doria, a Worgen rogue; she slips in amidst the pair unnoticed and greets them with a huff from her canine nostrils. Fourth is Elden, an aged Human priest; he moves with serene grace, his simple robes making a gentle hiss in the cool evening air.

And lastly ... "Hey guys! Sorry I'm late!" roars Nitpik the Gnome as he gallops in atop a clanking Mechanostrider. His mace -- a rotating gear -- creaks loudly as he hops to the ground, landing with a crunch in his jet boots. The tiny technophile adjusts his goggles and pats the mechanical chicken at his side. "What'd I miss?

Azeroth has a lot of advanced machinery. From the Gnomish Death Ray to the Goblin Rocket Launcher, from biplanes to zeppelins, from logging robots to entire mechanized defense systems, the World of Warcraft is an odd blend of fantasy and science fiction. In Cataclysm, the emphasis shifted away from robots and ancient machines -- the elemental planes have a distinctly organic feel, and the other zones are all rooted in the natural world -- yet we also saw the addition of playable Goblins, a race that's arguably brought more new technology to the landscape than almost any other.

Do these technologies belong in a swords-and-sorcery fantasy setting? Do you think there should be a cap on how advanced technology can get in such a world, or should it be allowed to run wild? Does seeing a sword-wielding Orc alongside a Goblin with a shotgun ever strike you as odd, or do you find it perfectly acceptable?

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