Make Love, Not Warcraft
The boys start playing the online computer game World of Warcraft, but their fun is soon ruined by an ultra-powerful player, NWBZPWNR, who keeps killing them -- or rather their heavily-muscled, exotic-looking on-screen avatars. They complain to the game's creator, Blizzard Entertainment, but the company brass is already well aware of the problem. It seems the ultra-gamer has spent the last year and a half doing nothing but playing Warcraft, allowing him to reach an almost godlike level -- and to kill other players (even Blizzard's admins) at will. The Blizzard execs fear that if something isn't done soon, users will get frustrated and find something else to do with their lives. After once again being mercilessly killed by NWBZPWNR, Cartman gathers all the boys for an emergency Warcraft meeting. Here, they plan a massive, coordinated attack on the villain. But even when all the kids attack at once, they're no match for their uber-powerful rival. After the defeat, the boys decide to ditch the game and play outside. All except for Cartman, who comes up with a daring plan: Re-enter the game, hide in the woods, and boost their power levels by killing millions of boars. 65,340,285 boars, to be exact. Once they all become powerful enough, they can challenge their nemesis again. Over the next two months they play the game obsessively, growing progressively more powerful onscreen, and progressively fatter, and pimplier, in the real world. Warcraft company execs follow their progress with interest, believing they might have a chance of defeating the renegade. To stack the odds in their favor, they decide to give them the mythical Sword of a Thousand Truths -- a special weapon stored on a 1 GB USB flash drive, originally removed from the game because it was too powerful. Unfortunately for the boys, they've already initiated their attack on NWBZPWNR from Cartman's basement. They are seventeen hours into the epic duel when the Blizzard execs try to deliver the sword to Stan's house, only to find him gone. His father, himself a novice Warcraft player, volunteers to log on and deliver the sword to his son. He commandeers a computer at a Best Buy and hands over the weapon just before being mortally wounded by the rogue gamer. Stan immediately uses the sword to drain his nemesis' defensive shields. Kenny then shoots him with an arrow, Kyle blasts him with a fire spell, and Cartman delivers the coup de gras by smashing his head with a war hammer. Other players come out from hiding to celebrate the great victory. Stan, Kyle, Cartman, and Kenny, now horrendously out of shape from weeks of subsisting on Hot Pockets and energy drinks, have saved the world . . . of Warcraft.
What I Learned Today
"You can just hang outside in the sun all day tossing a ball around, or you can sit at your computer and do something that matters."
- "How do you kill that which has no life?" (Blizzard Executive)
- "Gentlemen, this could very well lead to the end of the world . . . of Warcraft." (Blizzard Executive)
- "When Hitler rose to power there were a lot of people who just 'stopped playing.' You know who those people were? The French. Are you French, Clyde?" (Cartman)
- "Butters, go buy World of Warcraft, install it on your computer and join the online sensation before we all murder you." (Cartman)
- "My mouse-clicking finger hurts." (Kyle)
- "Mom, more Hot Pockets!" (Cartman)
- "Looks like you're about to get pwned." (Cartman)
- "I think Kyle has sweet titties." (Kenny)
- "I'm not an R-tard " (Stan's dad)
- "Don't you have better things to do than going online killing people?!" (Cartman)
The all-powerful renegade player, NWBZPWNR, makes his debut. In reality, he's just some morbidly obese geek that's spent the past year and a half parked in front of his PC playing World of Warcraft. Although the ultra-player is never actually named in the show, he's referred to as "NWBZPWNR" throughout the script. Kenny, Stan, Kyle, and Cartman all take on their uber-fat, pimply gamer personas here. The result is classic. Finally, we briefly are introduced to Nelson, Randy's co-worker at the Geology Station.
Countless newbs in the World of Warcraft get pwn'd by the evil one. And during the final battle, NWBZPWNR gets his head smashed in with a war hammer by Cartman's dwarf character. However, it was established early on that this guy had no life, so it hardly counts as a death.
Behind The Scenes
The staff, never dreaming that Warcraft's maker, Blizzard Entertainment, would help them, experimented with how to produce video game-like images themselves. Finally they just asked the company if they could use their characters, and were pleasantly surprised to find them highly stoked about being on South Park. The action scenes are directly from actual game play. Blizzard staff members camped out in the South Park offices and played the game under Trey's direction.
Where Did The Idea Come From
Both Matt and Trey are video game nuts with a more-than-passing knowledge of World of Warcraft. And since most of the staff are players too, it seemed like a natural fit for the show.
Pop Culture References
When Cartman rips on Clyde for wanting to quit playing, asking if he's French -- he says "Voulez vous coucher avec moi, Clyde?" This French phrase gained worldwide popularity for its use in the hit disco jam "Lady Marmalade." It means: "Do you want to sleep with me (tonight)?" "Live to Win" by Paul Stanley (of KISS fame) plays over the boys' boar-killing montage. Junk food is all over the place in this episode. Among other things, NWBZPWNR munches on some Chips-A-Ho! Cookies (a parody of Chips Ahoy!), and the boys live off Snacky Cakes, Cup Ramen, and Chinese takeout from City Wok. Rockstar energy drinks appear on almost every gamer's desk. There are also a few scattered cans of Red Balls (a parody of Red Bull). In one of the scenes with the rogue gamer, he has a Big-Gulp-type soda tub with a Pirates of the Caribbean-esque lid. The cup reads Buccaneers of the Bahamas.
The episode's fictional Sword of a Thousand Truths showed up in a later version of World of Warcraft. The Blizzard programmer wearing a T-shirt reading "Dwarf Needs FOOD!" references a video game called Gauntlet. Lastly, the scene where Stan's dad flags down a driver -- only to beat him up and steal his car -- was done a la Grand Theft Auto.
When the boys play together in Cartman's basement, the Antonio Banderas blow-up doll first seen in Season Three's "Korn's Groovy Pirate Ghost Mystery" (and many times thereafter) can be seen in the corner. There's also Clyde Frog, Peter Panda, and Rumper Tumpskin. In NWBZPWNR's apartment, there is a mini-model of a Zazul (the demon from "Hell on Earth 2006) on top of his computer, and an Okama Gamesphere (from "Towelie") next to his TV. Butters admits that he doesn't play World of Warcraft -- instead, he plays Hello Kitty Island Adventure. That's not actually a real game. We get a good look at a lot of the boys' rooms here -- some for the first time. Token has a bass guitar and some jazz posters; Tweek has coffee and a scary clown; and Clyde has a poster for Monster Machines and more importantly, a Playboy. In order to gain enough experience points, the boys kill 65,340,285 boars. It takes them seven weeks, five days, thirteen hours, and twenty minutes (with three hours a night to sleep). In Kenny's house, we briefly see his parents arguing in the background. Kenny's mom actually punches his dad in the face -- a healthy dose of domestic abuse we haven't seen since Season 2's "Chickenlover." Stan's character name in World of Warcraft is LUVS2SPWGE.
This episode won the 2007 Emmy for Outstanding Animated Program. It was the show's second Emmy, the first being Season Nine's "Best Friends Forever"