First there was the Piccolo of the Flaming Fire, which made people dance against their will. This wasn’t all that bad, though, because it had a reasonably long cooldown and was relatively difficult to get. (Although I note that in the Wowhead comments people called this the “Most annoying object in the game”.)
Then came the Toy Train Set, which caused everyone in the vicinity to do the /train animation. Despite having a relatively high price tag and a thirty minute cooldown, this was so annoying that Blizzard put out not one but two items that destroyed the train set. One commenter called this the “BEST TROLLING DEVICE EVER”.
Then came the Party G.R.E.N.A.D.E. Like the Piccolo, this forces people to dance, but unlike the Piccolo it continues to force people to dance even after they stop dancing. Thankfully, this was a trading card item and it was quite rare.
Flash forward to Pandaria, where Blizzard evidently didn’t feel that griefers had enough tools. The Party Grenade now is given quite frequently in Blingtron Gift Packages. I think Jana had collected over twenty of them before destroying them.
“So what’s so bad about making your character dance?” some might ask. Well, there are two things. As one commenter on Wowhead noted:
If you want to confuse people in a raid, Wait till the feast is dropped and everyone started to eat. than drop a Party G.R.E.N.A.D.E.
I did this last night’s raid.
Everyone didn’t know what was happening, “why don’t i have the food buff? and why am i dancing?”
Yes, Blizzard, this happens, and this happens frequently. It has happened in PuG raids I’ve been in, and it happens all the time in LFR. Feasts go to waste because people eat, are interrupted, and the food runs out.
But more fundamentally, these items break the one rule that should bind all roleplaying games together: in roleplay, nothing happens to my character without my consent. I decide whether I dance or resist the lure of the Piccolo. That’s not something your character has any right to decide. When people see these items they naturally come to the conclusion that it’s okay to force some other character to do something. And it isn’t.
And as if the Party Grenade wasn’t enough, Winter Veil 2012 brought us two items, the Foot Ball and the Pig Skin. Both of these items cause a targeted player to stand and perform a kicking or throwing animation to return it. Neither of these items has a cooldown.
The result is predictable. People in LFR trying to eat get hit by one of these things and a feast is wasted. People trying to RP have someone run up to them and spam this object, causing an animation that looks and sounds like kick boxing. Griefers have been given not one, but two new tools in their arsenal.
Happy holidays indeed.