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The QueueOct 12, 2021 12:00 pm CT

The Queue: Missed opportunities

There are several things I’m disappointed never made it into WoW. Among those, felt the keenest, is the fact that we’ll never have a Corgis Unleashed expansion after all.

This is The Queue, where you ask us questions and we’re going to talk about how we were totally going have quivers before we answer.

Seriously, remember those?


Can you earn Sarge even if you are not currently subbed to WoW? Will he be waiting there when/if you resub?


In order to earn Sarge, you have to play a little bit of the new Hearthstone Mercenaries feature. Then, you’ll get Sarge in WoW. Usually, mounts earned like this will display in your battle.net client as a pop-up, and then later you can “unwrap” it in WoW. Once it’s linked to your battle.net it shouldn’t disappear, unless it’s removed from the game entirely.

You may noticed that I’ve been using words like “should” and “may” here — that’s because I unfortunately can’t really see the future. Blizzard could always yoink something tomorrow. But as someone who hasn’t logged in to WoW in a while, I’m pretty confident in letting Sarge cool his heels a while.


Q4tQ: I think I’m being silly. Can someone talk me out of it please?

So I thought of trying New World. I was being a bit thick though because for the longest time, I never realised that “the MMO Amazon are working on” and New World were one and the same. And when I realised that a few weeks ago, my interest kinda waned because, ugh, Amazon. Worker slavery for slave wages in awful conditions.

I’m basically wondering whether I’m being silly – every MMO likely has some awful corporate giant behind it – we’ve just seen what came to light even about “our” Blizz – and so I shouldn’t worry too much. And yet, it grates a little.

What d’ya all think? Silly druid?

So, on the one hand, I get it. Amazon as a whole seems generally unsavory and kind of a little bit, you know, evil. On the other hand, they’re so entwined in most peoples’ daily lives that avoiding them is pretty much impossible unless you’re straight up homesteading off the grid.

I’ll admit I feel weird about New World specifically, especially since their initial previews and offerings had such deeply colonialist themes and mechanics. They’ve changed quite a bit of that since, but there’s still a framework of it there. For example, it feels really meta in a bad way that if your New World “company” gets big enough it’s allowed to set taxes for towns in-game however they’d like, and that’s the kind of narrative subtext which can shape opinions and even real-world legislation, a la the fictional stories like Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle. And similarly, though Blizzard’s go-to narrative arc is a redemptive one, I’ll admit that in this real-world point in time I personally am absolutely unwilling to let bygones be bygones.

The issue, to me, is in the MMO genre as a whole. MMOs are notoriously big, unwieldy beasts. You’re not going to find a small indie company with a decent rep who’s able to handle that kind of server infrastructure — and if they are, it’s pretty likely they’re going to use some kind of AWS service to do so. And as we’ve seen, though sometimes indies are superficially squeaky clean, they too can have some nasty stuff lurking below.

For me, personally, there are so many games out there that I’m more than happy to skip one that makes me feel even a little icky. Life’s too short, yanno?


Q4tQ: Which hunter should I level to 60 to join the Venthyr when patch 9.1.5 lands:
Vulpera Marks
Draenei Marks
or Dark Iron Survival?

The red and black of Dark Iron aesthetic says this is the only choice imo. Though, really, I don’t know that I’d level as anything other than BM — but then, I’m biased against melee classes in general, so.


Pet Question for Anna: how many of your pets are individually named?

Around a hundred. Most of them are friends from back in the day, like Fabulor the Everbloom Peachick or Miss Gloria the Molten Corgi. A lot of them are literary references, like my slightly bald, ennui-filled, easily dissembled Clockwork Gnome Prufrock, because I’m just that kind of nerd.

I will say that any pet that already had a “name” as opposed to a pet type doesn’t get renamed. Like Widget the Departed is still Widget, and Mr. Wiggles is still Mr. Wiggles. It seems rude to rename something that’s already been named, especially something as proper as it starts with “Mister.”


Q4TAnna: With last weeks Twitch leak what are you’re biggest takeaways and hot takes as a professional Content CreatorTM? Some of my favorite bad takes are people not realizing how 99.5% of the people on the top 10000 streamers don’t make minimum wages and there are millions more streamers below them. Most interesting is just how little Critical Role’s “budget” is compare to actual TV show.

The Critical Role hot takes in particular were just plain yikes to me. I get that part of it is due to the parasocial relationship of it all and the internal sense of betrayal when you realize that — Travis Willingham seems like he’d be your BFF over a beer at the bar, but even before this, that chances of that happening across millions of followers is infinitesimal.

Across nearly three years, with the assumption that this is post-tax income (it’s not) and assuming that only on-air talent are the only ones getting a cut (they’re not) that’s ~$500,000 per performer per year — a decent living, for sure, but not highest-pinnacle-on-the-hottest-platform kind of money. And granted, they have a few extra revenue streams, but for reference, they’d be getting a little more per year than Zach Braff made per episode toward the end of his run on Scrubs.

No, for me, the biggest omission from all the hot takes is the conjecture on how much Twitch gets. Streamers at affiliate level have a 50/50 split with Twitch on subs — if you sub to Blizzard Watch on Twitch for $5, we see $2.50 (really, 2 30-something because of fees and whatnot). If you’re a partner, you can negotiate a better cut, but the details of that are under NDA. The best split I’ve been able to confirm is 70/30. I’m not sure if the cut comes before or after the numbers present in the split, but there are over 50,000 partners and 1,000,000 affiliates now. Those numbers could be truly staggering.

And, as staggering as those are in general, with a corporation the size of Twitch under a corporation the size of Amazon, that’s freakin peanuts. I know they have things like exclusivity deals and ad deals and all that to draw from too, but even though those figures are beyond exorbitant to most, I’m really wondering how successful Twitch is — if it is at all — from Amazon’s POV.


Q4TQ: Are you planning on playing Hearthstone Mercenaries and if so did you prepurchase any packs?

I’ll play anything as long as it’s free. I don’t have Critical Role money over here!

I do plan on eventually checking it out, but this is a super busy time of year for me, so I’m not sure when I’ll have the time. This one may be sooner rather than later though, just because that Sarge mount is so freaking cute.

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