Mar 09

I Was A Goblin: World Of Workcraft

FT3 comments • 688 views

We resurrect I Was A Goblin to bring you a link to this visionary post: “Personal Branding is a Real Life RPG”.

“Every person on this planet is playing the same game as you – the game of life. We are the ones who realize this and are thus able to take advantage by actively leveling up so that we can become the strongest players possible.”

Indeed! Life is like a RPG in more ways than the author enumerates. For instance, some players start with no gold, skills or weapons, while others have immediate access to vast resources and huge numbers of magic items. They must have used a cheat code.

But I can spot one flaw in the analysis – he doesn’t specify which RPG life is like. Oh sure, he airily mentions WoW and Final Fantasy. But what if life is a different RPG entirely?

Perhaps, for instance, personal branding is like Call Of Cthulhu. You battle hopelessly against vast dark forces you cannot hope to comprehend or defeat until you either go die or are sent mad by forbidden knowledge. Surely such a picture has little to do with the reality of global business?

Or maybe the game of personal branding is in fact Paranoia? You desperately attempt to obey the whims of a colossal machine while trying hopelessly to hide your flaws, peccadillos and secrets. That would be nothing like our open social media era, however.

Instead, personal branding might be closer to Vampire: The Masquerade. In-fighting among cadres of powerful beings who survive by draining the life from the herd-like mass of humanity. But only a cynic would see that as a parallel to the corporate environment.

No, personal branding is like the oldest RPG of all – Dungeons And Dragons. The way to win is through the violent accumulation of money and if you try to do something interesting people will squawk that it’s against the rules. I hope this insight is incorporated into future analyses from the business minds at Personal Branding Blog.


  1. 1
    CarsmileSteve on 10 Mar 2009 #

    also it’s very difficult to reload life from the last save point…

  2. 2
    Viru on 18 Oct 2009 #

    Hi. This is José Luis from Spain. I discovered this column just yesterday and I’ve been reading all the entries this night.

    PLEASE BRING IT BACK. It’s the best thing about RPGs I’ve ever read.

    In any case, thank you for the wonderful job, from another ex-D&D master (altought I can tell you that here in Spain, for many years, MERP and Call of Cthulhu were the biggest games) who never got what’s that cool about vampires.

  3. 3
    Miguel on 1 Nov 2010 #

    I’ve enjoyed quite a lot these articles. I am looking at my old collection of rpg books with some nostalgia and I have found the many similitudes between your feelings and mine’s.

    And now I see that Viru has written here too! He has an awesome website in which he has satyrized quite successfuly (regarding the critizism with which his articles had been received by old hard-core players :D) those years in which youngsters like us spent evenings playing P&P games.

    I might very well start doing it again, just for the sake of memories and the beers that go along with it.

    Great, great articles! Very good indeed!!

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