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Webcomic / The Noob

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The Noob is yet another gaming Webcomic, which sets itself apart from most others by focusing almost entirely on parodying MMORPGs. The story originally revolves around Ohforf'Sake, the Player Character of an Everyman gamer who wanders aimlessly and cluelessly around the world of Clichequest, a brutally stereotypical fantasy MMORPG and gets into and barely survives (or not) all kinds of shenanigans.


As the comic has gone on, the focus has shifted from Ohforf himself to various other characters in the game world, including the Outcasts (a band of Player Killers/Heroic Comedic Sociopaths whose storyline included a pastiche of The Warriors), another, smarter, female newbie called Hypatia, Sir Bob the veteran player, the hapless members of a roleplaying guild, and the game developers themselves. The comic spends much of its time mocking MMORPG tropes and the absurdities of the genre, along with the players and developers of such games, but with far too much insight to be truly malicious.

Author Gianna Masetti announced that the comic would be on indefinite hiatus while she dealt with some real life issues back in September 2015.


The comic provides examples of:

  • Affably Evil: The Outcasts can be quite chummy when they aren't trying to kill you (except D34dly). Fred the Dread tries to take Ohforf under his wing and and teach him the ins and outs of PKing.
  • All Men Are Perverts: Ohforf and Darkblade at least, although Ohforf draws the line at Cyborella's borderline aggressive way of coming on to him.
  • An Adventurer Is You: Clichequest uses, as expected, pretty typical MMORPG classes.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot
    "The AI in this game is starting to worry me. It's so advanced, it whines."
  • Always Someone Better: Cyrus to Fred the Dread, though this is due to his excessive hacking.
  • Ancient Order of Protectors: In this strip, Ohforf joins a guild. Upon learning their name, "The Righteous Protectors of the Crimson Star", he imagines them as this trope, but it turns out they're just a roleplaying guild with a Non-Indicative Name.
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  • Beyond the Impossible: While proudly listing off all the games his clan have played and dominated, Fred the Dread drops this gem:
    "We were PKing in Pong!"
  • Bolivian Army Ending: The comic straight up recreates the iconic scene from the trope namer when Your Name Here and D34dly D34dly storm out of a building to take on a large group of PKers.
  • Bowdlerize: Parodied. When a player named himself Dick Tracy, a GM changed his name to !@%& Tracy (and banned him for a week).
    • The Devs briefly introduced a filter to censor all homophobic comments, which rendered D34dly incomprehensible. It was gay.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: The Clichequest App for cellphones, 'App Yours'. The free version lets you access your character's bank. The paid version lets you access other player's banks.
    • After the Head Dev was introduced to the concept of microtransactions, he had a system installed where raiders could pay money to make bosses easier. Or, for more generous donations, kill themselves for the raiders' convenience
  • Brick Joke:
    • The healing macro.
    • The guild leader of Efficient Omniscience asked where Sonny and Fredo were, and was told Fredo had gone PK. Many strips later, Fredo appeared with the SDLGDEDDLs.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Baron Wolfgang Von Epeen became the leader of Efficient Omniscience following the former leader's death and decided to talk trash to Absolute Endgame - even after he was told that one of the developers was in their guild.
  • Bunny-Ears Lawyer: This is how the other PKers view Dakilla and his enthusiasm for the game lore.
  • Call-Back: Arsemode has shown up several times, in increasingly elaborate variants.
  • Comically Missing the Point: Cyborella uses the old "is that a dagger in your pants or are you just happy to see me" line on Drakoola. Drakoola pulls out an actual dagger and starts gushing over its stats.
  • Crippling Overspecialization: Min-Maxing taken to the extreme, because a boss can only be beaten this way.
  • Death Is Cheap: Like most MMORPGs, although the PVP'ers heavily de-level someone by camping their corpse, though.
  • Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: Don't sass the devs.
  • Did You Just Punch Out Cthulhu?: After killing 4 GMs, Fred the Dread daydreams about ascending to PK Valhalla.
  • Diseased Name: Lord Herpes. He explains he named himself after the ancient god of travel and commerce. Hypathia stops Ohforf from pointing out the error.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: The head developer responds to accidentally being knocked in a lake by Ohforf by starting the Nerfaggedon, massively nerfing everyone around him.
  • Doomy Dooms of Doom: The SDLGDEDDL (Shadow Dread Lord Gods of the Dark Evil Dead Doom Legion).
  • Dulcinea Effect: "So, when are we leaving?"
  • Escort Mission: The "escort quest NPC"
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Fred the Dread and Your Name Here consider it bad form to trash talk well matched or undermatched opponents. Subverted by D34dly, who... doesn't.
    • The head developer draws the line at physically torturing beta testers...only just.
    • Fred the Dread is fine with exploiting exploits, but considers outright hacking and modding to be cheating.
  • Evil Is Cool: In-universe example, the devs introduced a PvP server based on character alignment and 90% of the player base went with evil. This is based on what actually happened when EverQuest introduced an alignment-based PvP server - Evil was far more popular than Neutral, and Neutral was far more popular than Good.
  • Eviler than Thou: Cyrus to Fred the Dread. While Fred the Dread is admittedly a bloodthirsty PKer and memorizes all the exploits to give himself an edge in PvP, he genuinely ground for levels rather than resort to hacking like Cyrus did.
  • Explosive Breeder: Rats are mass-produced this way.
  • Expospeak: In-universe example: The developers use these as 'lore-nukes' to put players in a coma, to hide that the game content isn't done yet.
  • Fake Ultimate Hero: Ohforf has become this completely by accident. Ohforf didn't even kill the raid boss. It swallowed the new GM, burned its insides on the GM's flaming staff and killed itself on the stalactites, then landed at Ohforf's feet. That's why the new GM got the uber-buff, not Ohforf.
  • Fat Comic Relief: Tacobell. When Ohforf and Hypatia first meet her, Ohforf keeps trying to ask her "Why is an elf so fa-" and Hypatia cuts him off. Turns out he wanted to ask her why she was so far from home. Even by roleplayer standards she's misfortunate.
  • Flanderization: D34dly D34dly started out as a bit ditzy. He evolved into someone who seems to be functionally retarded about everything that isn't PvP.
  • Funny Foreigner: A mild case in Your Name Here - his player is from Latvia and occasionally gets confused about American slang and customs. For example, when Fred said (regarding Hypatia) "I'd hit it", Your Name Here hit it. Literally. With his warhammer.
  • Genius Ditz: D34dly D34dly. He's pretty damn good at PvP, but doesn't seem to have even the slightest bit of common sense about anything else.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: Around 80% of the things the devs do. Hilarity Ensues.
  • I Was Quite a Looker: Drakoola, before limb-loss reduced him to just his nose.
  • Idiot Hero: Ohforf, from the start.
    • This is lampshaded when Hypatia convince the roleplayer guild's leader to let Ohforf in... on the basis he's roleplaying a retard. He's fooled immediately.
    • His later actions tend reflect more ignorance and naiveté than actual stupidity, though. But not always.
    • The Anti-PKs are generally this too, especially the roleplayers, who nine times out of ten get so immersed that they forget what they are really supposed to be doing.
  • Incompetence, Inc.: It's a miracle that the company that develops Clichequest manages to remain in business, with all their shoddy patching and modding practices.
  • Jerkass Gods: The GM's and developers are only godlike in-game, of course, but apart from this they are a prime example (when they're not just plain lazy).
  • Karma Houdini: Unsuprisingly, the PKing pros kill almost everyone without repercussions. Interestingly enough, the devs included Limb-Loss (a parody of Stat-Loss as was used in a real game) for PKers when they were killed as a form of karmic retribution. This is the reason Fred the Dread has a hooked hand. And Drakoola had killed so many players before dying himself, he is literally only a nose by this point.
    • The one time it looked like the PKers were going to get their comeuppance at the hands of the SDLGDEDDLs (they were outnumbered 5 to 1, and one SDLGDEDDL had a perma-kill hack), they were saved by CLICHEQUEST.EXE ERROR: SERVER CONNECTION LOST
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Deconstructed in this comic. Long story short, quest givers have to hide their barrels each time a player visits. Take Your Time finally explained !
  • Loud of War: Ohforf is punished by listening to the bards, and temporarily goes crazy.
  • Nintendo Hard: The game developer responds to complaints about the game being too easy by making the game this.
  • No Pronunciation Guide: Parodied. The squid-people of the continent Churrask'hal are called the Zhk'rgz. The Clichequest name generator creates names like 'Xvalglogiorull' and 'Ethangriredashmid'. A raid boss is named Ghrzxz. And so on...
  • Nominal Importance: Parodied when Sir Bob warns Ohforf while entering a high-level dungeon, telling him that each of the monsters inside are deadly enough to have their own respective names... which turn out to be human names such as Ted.
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: As an old-school PKer, Fred the Dread has lists of accomplishments crossing games and going back decades. Dakilla and Your Name Here are very tired of hearing about them. It's even worse when Fred happens to meet another old-school PKer - the "rituals", as Dakilla calls them, take 3 hours.
  • Old Shame: In-universe:
    • Before he became a PKer, Dakilla was part of a role-playing guild.
    • D34dly D34dly would like to make it known that he had no way of guessing that Slutzilla was a man in real life.
  • Only Sane Woman: Hypatia is a newbie who doesn't have the newbie lack-of-common-sense that Ohforf has, and thinks that gitting gud and kicking the PKs asses is a better way to deal with them than whining about them.
  • Overused Copycat Character: Spoofed, with all the elves trying to think of new ways to call themselves Legolas.
    • Ohforf got his name because the guy playing him got frustrated after being unable to find a new version of Aragorn, then trying a few other characters, getting frustrated, and shouting "Oh for f's sake!" Somehow the voice-to-text picked up Ohforf.
  • Patchwork Map: The Crossroads!
  • Personal Effects Reveal: The first rat that Ohforf kills has a tiny little wallet with a crayon drawing of his son expressing his love for his daddy.
  • Pointy-Haired Boss: The lead developer of the game, not that his employees are much better. Some are even worse.
  • Poopsocking: Parodied.
  • Purple Prose: Many roleplayers talk like this.
  • Rainbow Pimp Gear: Lampshaded of course, but Sir Bob's outfit actually wouldn't look out of place as a medieval noble.
    • A later bit character (a raid leader) is wearing so many shoulder pads, one on top of another, that his guildmates require a ladder to help him put a new pair on.
  • Read the Fine Print: When Ohforf's player installs the game, he clicks past this little gem:
  • Really Gets Around: Cyborella/Cathy is a very blatant example.
  • Reset Button: CLICHEQUEST.EXE ERROR: SERVER CONNECTION LOST appears whenever the story gets a bit too far from the status quo.
    • Rather literally, with how the devs use that button.
  • Rouge Angles of Satin: It's a MMORPG, what do you expect? The beginners quest building has a floor for "Rogues and Rouges".
  • Running Gag: Powerful characters are always getting Killed Off for Real by Clichemon.
  • Scarily Competent Tracker: Dakilla and the Aragorn Syndrome.
  • Sexy Packaging: The expansion pack. The expac featured a boob-tastic Firiona Vie parody. The head developer said it wasn't sexy enough. The boobs were then made three dimensional.
  • Shout-Out: Directly to City of Heroes at one early point. Not to mention that in many ways Clichequest seems to share a little too much in common with Ultima Online and EverQuest to be a coincidence.
    • Given the name of Clichequest, it's not exactly likely to be a coincidence...
      • The Noob shouts out to Everquest repeatedly. Over and over again. From the gag about the elven population dwindling because the newbies walk out of the treetop city and fall to their deaths (city of Kelethin), or when the new expansion was marketed by including a 3D bustline on the package (Firiona Vie), to the author acknowledging that one of the strips was based on an experience of "camping" a monster for 17 days...
    • The lead developer is known in-game as Lord Saxon—a shout out to Lord British of Ultima fame.
    • Allusions to movies are pretty frequent as well - there have been references to, at least, Blade Runnernote , Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kidnote ,Doctor Strangelovenote , Fantasianote , Forbidden Planetnote , The Graduatenote , The Warriorsnote , Fatal Attractionnote , Return of the Jedinote  and probably some others too.
    • Dwarf Fortress: seen on a dev's computer
    • Dorfsville is emblazoned with the "Hammers" logo from Pink Floyd's The Wall.
  • Shoulders of Doom: Apparently, the lead dev trying to outdo World of Warcraft in bigger shoulder pads. One rejected design had cranes on it to assist lifting epic weapons.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: The lead developer, and several players.
  • Stealth Pun: "Switch yourself off, fool! You'll attract attention!" - Sir Bob to a spy disguised as a lampshade.
  • "Stop Having Fun" Guy: (In-Universe). Al, one of the developers, is also a PvPer who despises all non-PVP content and constantly fights with the other developers when forced to work on "carebear content". He later gets his revenge.
    • The PKers too, to an extent. Fred and Dakilla explain to Oforf once that PKing keeps other players sharp and if they're not good enough to survive then they don't deserve to - and then ramble off a bunch of glitches and exploits they use in combat.
    • Darkblade steps into this role when Sir Bob returns, threatening to call a GM on him just because he's killing trolls from a vantage point, while other people who are playing, as Darkblade puts it, "the way that it was meant to be played", are ganged upon and brutalized by the trolls. Even after getting killed he maintains the attitude.
  • Stripperific: Parodied. Hypatia complains about it, and not to mention the cover for the game's expansion...
  • Take Your Time: Justified by quest givers who aren't really in a hurry to see that guy who broke all their barrels come back.
  • That Came Out Wrong: He actually is talking about a nose.
  • The Von Trope Family: Sir Darkblade's full name is Sir Darkblade Wolfeyes Orcbane Raislin De Urden Von Strudel.
  • Took a Level in Dumbass: D34dly D34dly.
  • 20 Bear Asses: Hilariously lampooned in an early strip - Oforf is unhappy with his quest of fetching 5 rat tails, and the level 20 advising him points out that as he advances in level he'll get cooler, more important quests - such as fetching 5 wolf tails.
  • Unfortunate Implications: In-universe; the GM default model looks an awful lot like a Klan member. Other moments from the devs like this are a Running Gag.
    • The Klan-costumes are intentional. The Alt Text mentions how the GMs in early MMOs really looked so intimidating. And it's also used as a Running Gag
  • Walking the Earth: Much of the strip has been Bob dragging Oforf all over the world looking for levelling opportunities.
  • Would Hurt a Child: Apparently, the baby is a mob too.