Monday, June 19, 2006

What is a Rogue?

What is a Rogue?

I've been playing a WoW rogue for quite some time. I've also played my share of rogueish characters in other games, such as the main character in Thief and a monk in Neverwinter Nights. My Oblivion character is pretty much a combination of a WoW rogue and the expert marksman in Thief. So, I guess you could say, I prefer that type of character.

However, I haven't really come across a nice, succinct history and definition of the elusive rogue. So, this being a rogue-centric blog, I felt I should at least make a humble attempt. My short history will not center on WoW rogues or other gaming rogues, but will try to detail real life rogues of various kinds.

Our first stop is the Wikipedia disambiguation page for "rogue", which includes the following potential definitions:
A rogue is set apart from the normal order, and acts in an independent manner. This can apply to individuals, states, or other actors.

Rogue may refer to:
  • Rogue (Dungeons & Dragons) or thief (character class), a common character class in RPG games, usually criminals or thieves who specialize in stealth and subterfuge
  • Rogue (comics), a member of the X-Men in the Marvel Comics universe
  • Rogue (band), a 1970s British pop-rock trio
  • Rogue (computer game), a 1980s dungeon-crawling, ASCII-based computer game
  • Rogue (film) a 2006 Jet Li movie
  • GoldenEye: Rogue Agent, a James Bond video game
  • Rogue class in World of Warcraft
  • Rogue Entertainment, a software company
  • Rogue River (Michigan)
  • Rogue River (Oregon)
  • Rogue River (tribe), a Native American group.
  • Rogue (musician), the vocalist with darkwave band The Crüxshadows
  • Rogue Wave (band), a band signed to Sub Pop and headed by Zach Schwartz (aka Zach Rogue)
  • The Rogues, a group of The Flash's enemies
  • The Rogues (band), a Scottish band from Texas
  • Rogue Ales is a microbrewery in Newport, Oregon.
  • Star Wars: Rogue Squadron, a Nintendo 64 video game
  • A plant that is of a different type from the rest of the crop - see Volunteer
  • A rogue elephant
  • A rogue state
  • A rogue planet
  • Rogue Herries, a 1930 novel by Hugh Walpole
  • Rogue Male, a 1939 novel by Geoffrey Household, and a 1976 TV film adaptation of it
  • Rogue Guitars, a brand of guitar

I particularly like the Rogue Ales, they taste pretty good.

If you notice, Wikipedia lists multiple rogue links. 24 to be exact. How many of these describe any historically true rogues? None, unfortunately. Thus, I'll have to go elsewhere.

(Although, I actually know personally the musician Rogue of The Crüxshadows, and a few of his bandmates. Rachel's nice. Might even remember me from Epitome. If you see her, tell her Palus says hi.)

OMG! I just looked her up on their website, and she plays WoW! Hah, what a trip.
Yikes, Looks like Merriam-Webster really doesn't like rogues:

Main Entry: rogue
Function: noun
Etymology: origin unknown
2 : a dishonest or worthless person : SCOUNDREL
3 : a mischievous person : SCAMP
4 : a horse inclined to shirk or misbehave
5 : an individual exhibiting a chance and usually inferior biological variation

- rogu·ish /'rO-gish/ adjective
- rogu·ish·ly adverb
- rogu·ish·ness noun

At least we now know that the origin is "unknown." Or so it says.



n.-An unprincipled, deceitful, and unreliable person; a scoundrel or rascal.
-One who is playfully mischievous; a scamp.
-A wandering beggar; a vagrant.
-A vicious and solitary animal, especially an elephant that has separated itself from its herd.
-An organism, especially a plant, that shows an undesirable variation from a standard.

adj. -Vicious and solitary. Used of an animal, especially an elephant.
-Large, destructive, and anomalous or unpredictable: a rogue wave; a rogue tornado.
-Operating outside normal or desirable controls: “How could a single rogue trader bring down an otherwise profitable and well-regarded institution?” (Saul Hansell).

n : a deceitful and unreliable scoundrel [syn: knave, rascal, rapscallion, scalawag, scallywag, varlet]

Cambridge has an interesting entry:

rogue Noun [C]1 OLD-FASHIONED HUMOROUS a person who behaves badly but who you still like:"Come here, you little rogue!" chuckled my uncle.The women all think he's a loveable old rogue.

Well, I've done a bit of research. Maybe about 10 minutes worth. But, with the Internet age, that's enough, right? When it comes right down to it, "rogue" is more of a concept than anything. DnD changed the name of "Thief" to "Rogue" in order to broaden the class, or at least the concept of the class. It's basically anyone who operates outside the norm.

Funny, I guess that means with all the overabundance of rogues in WoW, Rogues *are* the norm. So, they're not rogues any longer. What shall we call them, then? Swashbucklers? Adventurers? Stealthies?

Okay, here's something for my readers to do: Taking into consideration the current state of affairs in Azeroth, come up with a rogue quest series that starts at level 50 and continues through level 60, with periodic gear and attribute upgrades, and a nice end-game rogue challenge that will result in some great gear. Concentrate on using rogue abilities that all rogues can learn, and try to incorporate challenging feats that take some skill and that are rogue-specific.

Then we'll take all the halfway decent entries, and send them to Blizzard with a note: If we could do it, why can't you?


With so few overall classes, and such a big game, you'd think Blizzard could have designed a bit more class-specific content. I mean, for the rogue set gear upgrade quests, what part of it is rogueish whatsoever? Nada!

Blizzard did have a potential avenue with the secret rogue society thing, and acquiring the badges for reputation... that... doesn't get you anything. Blizzard can still jump in and fix this, and add to it, and make a really awesome world for rogues to play around in. But, for now, all we're good for is ganking, opening doors, and, if we're even invited to instances, opening lockboxes there. Let's get some neat rogue stuff, Blizzard! And not: fight through an army of mobs, and kill a mob you couldn't possibly kill solo, oboy, and get some crappy gear for it.

How about: sneak through an army of mobs, figure out which random mob has the key to a door that you have to watch the patrol carefully to avoid getting detected while unlocking and opening (it's optional to unlock it with your lockpicking skill, but it takes twice as long as with the key) (oh, and some mobs you pickpocket might have some nifty items, but the instance is YOU specific, so you can't farm them over and over), sneak into the barracks to find an officer's lockbox, open it, get some letter, do some forgy thing with it, put it in reach of the commander without getting caught, and get the hell out of there. One screw up, and you've sounded the alarm (yeah, amazing how a guy 10 feet away from you fighting his buddy might actually see you), and you'll have to try it again later.

That could be one. Add another one later: Assassination. There's a traitor among us in Stormwind, and he's plotting the escape of a notorious enemy of ours. The traitor has arranged that the enemy be locked up in the Stormwind stockade. You'll have to sneak in there and get to him without alerting any of the escaped prisoners, and then assassinate him before he can motivate the prisoners to riot and escape the stockade entirely. Be warned, though, once you start to attack him, you'll have only moments to kill him before he shouts out for help, alerting the nearby prisoners who will undoubtedly rush to his rescue, and possibly your demise.(apply similar facts for Horde rogue quest).

Wow, that'd be an easy one to make. Wouldn't have to change much of what's already there, and what a neat challenge. What a surprise that'd be. Assassination? Who woulda thunk a rogue would be interested in that?

Bah. Come on, Blizzard, help a poor bored rogue out.


Anonymous Verash said...

There's probably precedent in the class epic quests, at least those that were actually, y'know, implemented (well,the non-farmy bits, too). If I remember correctly, the priest quest requires you to protect some villagers from attack, the hunter quest see you finding and defeating powerful enemies in the wilderness, the (arguably) warrior and pally quests take you into a huge beast's lair to endure its most powerful attacks. And then, for everyone else... nothing!

I'd actually like to see even more hardcore class-based quests- sneak into the cities of the enemy and steal their most powerful treasures! Tear arcane secrets from the universe with nothing but your wits! Sell your soul to a demon for unstoppable power, bwahahahaha!

[wipes away evil laughter spittle]

Yeah- perhaps I've been on an RP server for too long.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006 10:52:00 AM  
Blogger Krzysztof said...

My friend says "rogue" as word come from "raguel":
But we can't find is it true?

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