I am a bad blogger. I left you guys for almost two weeks with no posts. Now many of you kept the conversation going in the comments — which I suppose just goes to show that I myself am rather extraneous to this whole process — but I did promise you some hefty Cataclysm summaries and analysis when I got back.
Unfortunately, you’re not getting any of that today.
Instead, I wanted to talk about a question that’s been looming large in my mind the past two weeks, and especially since Blizzard announced the launch of their Faction Change service yesterday.
In brief: Should Mania — my orc hunter, my main character, my only (at this point) level 80, and incidentally the eponym of this blog — should Mania change her race?
Now I admit this pondering is a bit premature. Although Blizzard has mentioned that they will eventually support a race change within the same faction, right now you can only change races as you change factions. I play characters on both sides, but I consider Mania to be Horde and I’d be pretty uncomfortable changing that.
(Technically you can switch factions and then switch back again to change races within a faction, but there’s a 60 day cooldown on faction changes so I’d be stuck as Alliance for two months. Better to wait, I think, and see how fast they can get the Race Change service done. And there’s a better reason to wait, which I’ll get to in a second.)
But why would I want to change Mania’s race? Don’t I like being an orc? And hey, don’t I roleplay? Isn’t race a rather important part of a roleplayed character’s personality and history?
It’s true that the majority of my characters have carefully-planned RP histories and personalities. And yes, these are usually deeply entangled with their race. But Mania, oddly, is the biggest exception to this self-imposed rule.
Mania was my first character (well, the first one I didn’t delete two days later) and at the time I was more interested in finding a class that I liked than I was with building a character. I picked Horde because I prefer misunderstood evil and underdogs both, and I chose orc because I couldn’t see myself furry (Tauren) and I didn’t like the female troll voice. Female orcs did look a bit vapid and tusky, but at least they have gorgeous athletic bodies — very appropriate for adventurers. I really wanted to be undead, but of course there are no undead hunters (yet!).
Mania does have an in-character history that I can whip out when it’s appropriate, but her personality is straight me. I don’t have to work out her motivations or reactions because they are mine. And truthfully I’ve never been fully satisfied with her backstory. It helps frame some of her (my) personal eccentricities, and explains her fascination with Thunder Bluff, but it doesn’t quite feel natural to me. Honestly, I’m just not a very good orc.
Now, of course, I have other choices for Mania. Through the (eventual) Race Change service she could become a blood elf hunter … and I actually rather like blood elves, for all that they’re common as dirt and the females are so thin they can’t wear properly protective armor. Or, if I wait long enough — until after the Cataclysm expansion adds new race/class combos, and long enough after that that Blizzard allows changes to the new combos — she could become undead. An undead hunter just like I always wanted.
I don’t really know if it’s worth it, though. I could just start a new undead hunter, and that hunter might end up as a new main for me, at least for awhile. (I’d lose my pets and mounts and achievements that way, though.)
On the other hand, if I still have my slime by then … well, just imagine: an undead hunter with a slime. Can anything be cooler?
 I’ve just realized that I used ‘Mania’ in the title of the last two posts, once referring to me and once to my character. Sorry about that –that’s got to be confusing for you guys!