Chat Channels – Hearthstone Communications and Attunement
The Grim consider “guild chat” and guild-related “channels” to be an instantaneous method of communication, linked with the hearthstone item because it is generally an item that no character is without, and the possibility that its powers, which definitely involve instantaneous translation across distances, are not fully understood is certainly viable. It is also used frequently to explain “whispers” at a distance and “party” or “raid” communications that take place at a distance. Party invitations, or “attunements”, are said to be accomplished via the hearthstone.
Some players choose to use other explanations to describe their ability to communicate over distances, such as magic skills or communication with the spirits. The general consensus among the Grim is that this communication is auditory or at most verbal in nature only. If you want to see what someone is doing rather than simply hearing it, it is best to meet them in person somewhere in the game and use emotes directly, or use non-public channels so that the players involved all understand the conventions and are not breaking them and confusing others. Keep this in mind when reacting to and responding to other players in IC channels.
/who and WorldDefense
The who listing is part of the game mechanics, allowing us to know where certain players are in the world at any given time. Should we be able to use this knowledge in character? In some cases, this knowledge can be explained as NPCs such as guards, the Flight Masters, and other random Horde may note characters’ movements in a way that is reportable. It could also be explained with certain qualities and effects of magic. However, this very much reduces a character’s ability to move around the world with any degree of stealth. In some sense, this is realistic because in truth, any Horde can note the general location of any other Horde currently online. In others, it is simply uncooperative and difficult to cope with. The best solution is to communicate with the person involved about exactly what degree of visibility they were maintaining, but the ability to know who is visible in the world is something that can be explained and integrated in character.
This also brings into question the legitimacy of WorldDefense alerts, as those are the Horde indicator of Alliance presence. How can you hear those calls? It makes sense that a certain communication channel would be set aside in the name of Horde defense, and that any listening to it as they would to any other channel can hear the calls of guards in various cities and outposts. We don’t know which Alliance or how many are there until we show up unless another player tells us, but we do know just how much distress the NPC guards are reporting. Ideally, because of the Grim’s position on the Alliance, response to World Defense alerts should happen any time a given Grim is not otherwise occupied. Bored? See what’s up in World Defense and go show the Alliance your face and your tabard and give them hell. Show them that you’re Horde and proud of it, and don’t be afraid to call for backup.
Many Grim traditionally refer to postings on the Grim forums as “the halls”. Does that mean there is a physical location for this hall? Is it some place we can go and do things, if only in an out of game sense? Is it an elaborate poster board or a wall covered in message cubbies? The description of the locale has been outright stated in stories by Grim members, so the general consensus is that yes, there is a guild hall. In it can be found details about upcoming expeditions and events, posted letters from other Horde and sometimes other guilds, and sometimes private gatherings of guild members.
Where is this hall located then? What does it look like? What kind of rooms does it have?
Due to the extremist nature of the Grim, the most logical explanation for the location of the “halls” or any given gathering point for acquiring information is that it is, in fact, mobile. The Grim likely own several different buildings and maintain a list of places of interest where indirect gatherings can be held and documents kept, but rather than risk the security of Grim information by allowing it to be somewhere that can be found easily, all things kept within any Grim “hall” are regularly moved about the world. Information from outside the Grim can still come to the location, as all of the Grim and some of Blood Moon Rising must obviously know where it is, allowing explanation for the physical aspect of Grim organization without the need for a single, destructible, insecure location.
The mobility of Grim organization also allows for a large and interesting degree of freedom in terms of explaining what goes on in character when people are offline.
The in-game calendar is accessible from anywhere and can be considered more along the lines of the postal system, perhaps as messages and updates sent directly to people involved in that method of of planning.
– Words from Qabian Amberlight
Former Keeper of The Grim