The classic WoW moment is still fondly remembered for more innocent times.
It was on May 11, 2005, a World of Warcraft guild called “Pals for Life” was at the gates of The Rookery, in the Upper Blackrock Spire (UBRS) raid, which became a profound headache for the first batch of players exploring high-level raids in the original Blizzard game. The problem was not an enemy with great difficulty, but an area full of eggs that exploded when the players stepped on them, causing dozens of dragon hatchlings to pounce on the group.
Although there was an event that asked the groups to kill all the young, it was optional and the reward was not proportional to the difficulty of maintaining the formation and overcoming the flock of enemies, so it was soon concluded that the best it was to go through the narrow path free of eggs and finish off the active enemies so that the annoying hatchlings would not have to be dealt with. But either due to mishaps or accidents, many groups had serious difficulties moving through that particular room and there was always a certain tension, which earned him the reputation of “cursed place” for the community, a point where numerous raids ended. by boredom or anger of the members of the group.
Faced with the “cries” of some players for Blizzard to lower the difficulty of this area, the group released a satirical video and published it on the official forums of the game with a thread called “” UBRS (vid) ROOKERY OVERPOWERED! blue please. “It showed a video uploaded to YouTube in which a group meticulously studied how to get through the room, with an elaborate tactical conversation (exaggeratedly elaborate in fact). Suddenly, the group’s tank seems to return from to get something to eat and without having heard anything or warn anyone, he launches into the room to the shout of “Leeeeeeeeerooooooooy Jeeenkins” before the confusion of the rest of his companions, who try to save the situation in vain. In the end all die, of course, but Leroy closed saying “at least I had chicken”.
The video went viral and transcended WoW’s borders to become a phenomenon. The concept was easy to understand without knowing the details of the game, the comic tempo was perfect and the way in which the player, Ben Schulz, released his war phase was hilarious, so it is understood that it became an emblematic scream of war as brave as an idiot. His scope was such that Blizzard created an achievement and an MMO title around him, just like a legendary Hearthstone card. He even invited the player to a Blizzcon to let out his battle cry in front of thousands of fans, not to mention his presence in popular culture like his presence in board game questions, his appearance on sitcoms like “How I Met Your Mother” , or the multiple winks made from other games such as Dark Souls, Borderlands or Duke Nukem Forever.
For more than a decade there was some doubt whether the moment had really been the result of an accident or had been something prepared. Given the name on the forum it seemed more like a satire, but that context was soon lost. And details like that “32.3%” probability of survival in a serious tone within the previous strategic planning was not something that normal players said, although to get that detail you had to know the game a little. Many were quite sure that it had been theater, but it would not be until 2017 when its managers confirmed to Jason Schreier in Kotaku that it had been satire and that they never thought that people would take it seriously. By then it did not matter if it was authentic or a montage, it was already saved as an intimate moment of popular culture around the internet.