World of Warcraft surfaced as a kind of character witness for the Anders Breivik trial. More to the point, playing WoW served to dun the shooter's character.
Breivik, 33, already known to have a long history with the online role-playing game, was particularly absorbed by it between November 2010 and February 2011, when he played for an average of 6 hours and 50 minutes per day, according to prosecutors.
Why would this matter? First, there's a semiotic reading about handles, which could indicate politics.
According to prosecutors, Breivik played Warcraft under the aliases "Andersnordic" and "Conservatism."
Nordic and conservative: you connect the dots.
Next is the classic games-warp-minds argument:
Norwegian anthropologist Thomas Hylland Eriksen, who was brought in as an expert witness for Breivik's defense earlier this year, said in an interview with the British network ITN that Breivik was apparently unable to separate games from reality. "He does not seem to be very successful at distinguishing between the virtual reality of 'World of Warcraft' and other video games and reality," Eriksen said.
Let's see if these reasons hold up in court, and/or appear in other instances.