Imperial Inquisition – Wrenn from Warhammer ConflictMay 13, 2008
Warhammer Conflict, an unholy fusion of forums, news and piglet slaughter, was recently investigated by our crack Inquisition squad (after all, nobody expects us), dragging away Wrenn for a little “debriefing”:
WAAAGH!: Tell us a bit about yourself — your handle/screen name/real name, age, real life occupation, your pevious MMO experience, and your play style.
WRENN: My name is Dominic “Wrenn” Graziano. I’m a 43 years old male and live near Scranton, Pennsylvania. For several years I was known as KelsonEA – as I was a tester for EA Sports for a number of years, and a Community Leader from 2004-2005. Right now, I am an underwriter for commercial loans.
People always ask me, “Why the name ‘Wrenn’? You’re a guy!” When I discovered Final Fantasy XI – which was my first MMORPG – I played as Kelson. When I went to Lineage 2, my “Kelson” name was taken. After about a half hour of getting “name not available”, I came up with “Wrenn”, which is a slightly altered version of Wren Ellessidil, the main character of a book I was reading at that time. I firmly established myself in the Lineage 2 community, and the name “Wrenn” stuck.
My MMO experience began with Final Fantasy XI. From there I went to Lineage 2. That’s basically it. Sure, I’ve dabbled in World of Warcraft and some other games, but never really found a home in them.
If I had to describe my play style, I would say that I am a goal-oriented player. I really enjoy a challenge – so I tend to enjoy the role of the “underdog”. I like trying to accomplish something when the odds are not in my favor.
WAAAGH!: What type of social play do you gravitate towards: soloing, participating in small guilds/small groups, or participating in large guilds/large raids?
WRENN: I’m much more geared toward solo play or small groups. I don’t like to grind for experience in large parties. I’m also a fan of smaller, more personable guilds. I’ve found that the few large guilds I’ve been in seem to be plagued by a continual stream of members coming and going. That bothers me. I prefer smaller guilds because it is much easier to get to know your guild mates and establish lasting friendships. I love to participate in large-scale sieges and PvP battles – but I absolutely hate to do any kind of PvE raids.
WAAAGH!: What motivated you to get involved with the WAR community and how did you go about doing it?
WRENN: After 3 years in Lineage 2, many people I knew (friends and enemies alike) became bored or absolutely alienated with the game. It was suggested that we give WAR a look, and we all liked what we saw. We all enjoy PvP, and WAR promised a new and enjoyable experience. So, we formed a guild. It was then suggested that we create a fansite, so I volunteered my good friend Mike “Leggy” Malnar to create the site. Less than 24 hours later, Warhammer Conflict was born! The site is really a team effort – but make no mistake about it – Mike is the guy who gives the site its heartbeat. We really run the site together, along with the excellent staff we have. I have Italian blood, so I’m the loudmouth of the group – therefore I seem to get the most attention.
WAAAGH!: What are some of the more notable trends you’ve observed in the WAR community since you’ve been active in it?
WRENN: I’ve been amazed how large and passionate this community is! This community is without doubt the best community I’ve ever been involved with. That’s saying a lot, because the game itself is still months from being released! I’ve become very good friends with several of the other fansite owners. We’re constantly helping each other out – making suggestions and alerting each other of newly released information. More importantly, some of us talk for several hours a week – and we’ve established friendships beyond just the realm of Warhammer. I think the community would be really shocked at the amount of inter-site interaction that goes on. Another notable trend that I really enjoy is the amount of information that EA Mythic releases to the community. I’m very impressed with the amount of interviews, podcasts and chat events EA Mythic participates in.
WAAAGH!: Did you play Dark Age of Camelot (or do you still), and what did you like/hate about it?
WRENN: I never played DAoC. However, during my time in Lineage 2 I met several players who had come from Dark Age of Camelot. They assured me that DAoC was likely the best PvP game they had ever played. This really helped my decision to move over to WAR from Lineage 2, knowing EA Mythic was developing this game.
WAAAGH!: What PvP experience do you have, and what are your general feelings on it?
WRENN: Pretty much all of my true PvP experience comes from Lineage 2. I love to PvP. I feel that PvP should rely on a player’s skill, with not as much emphasis on a person’s level or gear. I’m a big fan of large-scale PvP. There’s nothing better than getting 500 people together and watch them try to slaughter each other!
WAAAGH!: What faction (order/chaos) do you plan siding with when the game releases, and why?
My guild decided to go Destruction. I think the main reason is that the Destruction races/classes were just a bit more interesting to them than that of Order. However, to be quite honest, I wouldn’t mind playing Order. I love a good challenge, and it certainly seems like being Order will present a hefty challenge at this point.
WAAAGH!: What class(es) currently appeal to you the most, and are they similar or different to classes you typically play in other MMOs?
WRENN: Normally, I play an archer-class in MMO’s. I really want to stay away from playing an archer in WAR. I’ve never played a tank or support class in my life, and I don’t really enjoy playing magic-users. So, I’ve decided to play a Witch Elf. The class seems suited to my style of play. Plus, I really like their big . . . hair.
WAAAGH!: What features of WAR have you the most excited to experience?
WRENN: I really can’t point to any single aspect of the game that I’m looking forward to the most. The entire game system seems right up my alley, and I am looking forward to spending quality time in the game, and meeting many more people in this great community. Anyway, to answer your question – if I had to pick one thing, I am most excited about my guild. As I stated earlier, the core members of my guild are from Lineage 2. We’re a bunch of Lineage 2 “enemies” that got together and formed a WAR guild. During our time decimating each other in Lineage 2, we formed a strong respect for each other. It should be interesting, because these players are some of the most skilled PvP’ers I’ve ever seen. If we’re able to bring this same kind of success to WAR, we should be a guild to be reckoned with. But right now, it’s certainly a worthless point – as no one has played the final retail version of the game yet.
WAAAGH!: Did you apply for the beta, did you get into the beta, and have you pre-ordered the CE?
WRENN: Yes, I am in beta. For the longest time, I wasn’t and I often get teased by some of the other fansite owners for not being in beta with them. Yes, I pre-ordered the CE – though I was devastated that a pair of those “Paul and Jeff” sunglasses were not included. How could they omit those? Honestly, what were they thinking?
WAAAGH!: What concerns do you have for WAR’s gameplay and future?
WRENN: My main concern is that the game will present a legitimate challenge over a long period of time. I also want everyone to be afforded the same opportunities to succeed – and for the best players/guilds/alliances to establish themselves. I’m very interested in how EA Mythic will handle botters and gold sellers. So far, from what I’ve seen and heard, I am encouraged that EA Mythic will do their best to maintain a fair and challenging experience for all its subscribers.
WAAAGH!: What will you be doing with your gaming time between now and WAR’s release?
WRENN: Mostly, I will be on Warhammer Conflict – and on the other sites in the WAR Community. I’m trying to stay away from MMORPG’s in general right now, because I want my experience in WAR to be fresh and exciting. I don’t want to burn myself out playing another MMO – especially since I know I won’t be playing it come fall.
Hopefully, I will be in WAR beta soon. If not, you can always either find me at Warhammer Conflict or at Steamtown Mall in Scranton, PA – I’m the guy playing with the Slinky on the escalator.