Sunday, March 11, 2012

Train Wrecks

I just realized that, of all the things I've featured in this burgeoning little blog about toys, I've yet to actually discuss a plain and simple toy.  Today's feature is actually a double, because you cannot discuss one without invariably arriving at the other.

The Toy Train Set and the Wind-Up Train Wrecker are two individual items that can be purchased for 250g at various toy and novelty vendors around Azeroth, and they caused quite a stir when they were first introduced in the Wrath of the Lich King expansion.

The Toy Train Set, when used, places a small train on a circular track on the ground.  Seems innocent enough... until the train makes everyone in range do the /train emote, complete with eardrum-obliterating sounds.  These quickly became the weapon of choice for bank and auction house trolls, as well as the bane of raid leaders the world over.  But what could you do?  Nothing!  The train was there in all the chug-chugging glory.

Then, one patch later, amid the howls of pain of the masses of Azeroth, Blizzard gave us the Wind-Up Train Wrecker, a little mechanical gnome with a big hammer.  He has but one purpose: DESTROY TINY TRAINS!  This little guy came with the same cooldown as the train set, however, and many areas became battlefields with train-droppers on one side and train-wreckers on the other.  It became nothing more than a numbers game.  Whichever side had more units won the battle for that half hour.

There were those who cried out against such toys in general, claiming that Blizzard only made the train so annoying and troll-worthy (that's a word now) in order to practically force players to sink more gold into the Train Wrecker.  Whether intentional or not, that was exactly the effect it had.  For every train set sold for 250g, at least one train wrecker was purchased at the same price.  But love 'em or hate 'em, these two little toys are definitely interesting additions to Azeroth's catalog o' stuff.


  1. I hate the trains with a passion.

    I'd love to see the sales records for the two toys, my guess is that the 2-3 train wreckers are sold for every single train. Which reminds me I have to get a couple for my alts.

    I particularly hate them in places like Alterac Valley, especially if there are a group of you on voice comms. There is a really short period of time in which to get instructions out, but people get frustrated by the train and can't hear the instructions over their noise.

    1. Oh I definitely hated the trains and loved the wreckers. I mean, the train isn't so bad if it's just me out in the middle of nowhere. And I recall more than one occasion of being so frustrated with some aspect of the game that I dropped the train just to drop the wrecker a second later. I loved the little mechagnome's victory dance...