Make Love, Not Warcraft

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"Make Love, Not Warcraft"
South Park episode
Episode no.Season 10
Episode 6
Directed byTrey Parker
Written byTrey Parker
Featured music"Live to Win"
by Paul Stanley
Production code1008
Original air dateOctober 4, 2006 (2006-10-04)
Episode chronology
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"Make Love, Not Warcraft" is the sixth episode in the tenth season of the American animated television series South Park. The 147th episode overall, it first aired on Comedy Central in the United States on October 4, 2006. In the episode, named in a play on words after the 1960s counterculture slogan "Make love, not war", Cartman, Kyle, Stan, and Kenny enjoy playing the popular massively multiplayer online role-playing game World of Warcraft. When a high-level player goes around killing other players in the game, they start playing the game every day to try to stop him. The episode was written and directed by series co-creator Trey Parker. In 2015, he and co-creator Matt Stone listed it as their third-favorite episode of the series.

Despite worries from Trey Parker near the end of production, the episode went on to receive critical acclaim, with critics praising its lampooning of nerd culture and use of machinima, and is considered by many fans and critics as one of the best episodes of the series. The episode additionally went on to win a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program (for programming less than one hour), becoming the first machinima work to win an Emmy.[1]


A griefer repeatedly kills Cartman, Kyle, Stan, and Kenny's characters in the online game World of Warcraft. Stan's father, Randy, becomes interested in the game, but does not survive long before being killed by the griefer, a high-ranking player character who kills other player characters at will; the griefer in reality is a middle-aged obese man named Leroy Jenkins who represents the stereotypical comic book, PC gamer nerd. The boys phone their annoyance to Blizzard, but the company executives find they cannot remove the griefer from the game because his ridiculously high level blocks any attempts to do so.

Cartman gathers all the kids of South Park and convinces them all to log in at the same time in order to execute a retaliatory attack on the griefer, even outcast Butters. However, once the battle begins, the griefer summons giant scorpions and easily dispatches the kids' characters. This causes everyone to lose hope and stop playing except for Cartman, who, after calculating exactly how much time it would take for him, Stan, Kyle, and Kenny to gain as many experience points as the griefer, convinces them to keep playing as well. For the next two months, the boys play the game for 21 hours a day, killing low-level boars in the game's forests to gain experience points. In the process, the boys become lazy, long-haired, obese (morbidly in Cartman's case), and acne-ridden. The boys' characters earn experience points so quickly that the Blizzard executives, who have also been monitoring the griefer, take notice and believe they might have a chance.

Determined to help the boys slay the griefer, the executives decide to give the boys the Sword of a Thousand Truths, a weapon so powerful that it was removed from the game and stored on a 1 GB USB flash drive. A man in accounting had actually foretold a prophecy of a group of characters who would show themselves worthy of wielding it. Unaware of the executives' plan however, the boys have already initiated what becomes a seventeen-hour battle against the griefer. The executives arrive at Stan's house with the flash drive, unaware that the boys are actually at Cartman's house. Randy tells the executives that he can log in with the sword and give it to the boys' characters online. Eventually logging onto a demo of the game at a Best Buy, Randy gives Stan the weapon, but Randy's character is mortally wounded by the griefer in the process. Enraged, Stan attacks the griefer with the sword, draining his shields and mana spells, allowing Kyle and Kenny to attack with effect. Cartman approaches him and proceeds to smash the griefer's head with a hammer (much to the man's shock), owning him in the process. Numerous World of Warcraft players celebrate the griefer's demise, praising the boys as heroes. As Stan contemplates what they do now, Cartman says, "What do you mean? Now we can finally play the game." With Cartman making suggestions to boost their characters, the boys begin playing the game as they originally intended.


Machinima was used extensively in "Make Love, Not Warcraft". Here, Stan, Kyle, Cartman, and Kenny's characters stand above the slain griefer.

The episode uses machinima in many of its scenes to create a better emulation of the game. It was originally scheduled to air as the 145th episode, but it was delayed because of difficulties in creating the machinima.[2]


South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone collaborated with Blizzard Entertainment to craft the machinima used in the episode. They stated in their commentary for the episode that they were completely shocked that the company was on board to help them out. The machinima scenes were created using shots of the in-game footage, and re-creation of the characters in Maya, with Blizzard Entertainment providing their own character models and computers to test with. Blizzard also gave the producers permission to use the alpha server of the expansion pack World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade on which to shoot the scenes.[2] Michael Morhaime, president and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment, issued a statement over the collaboration:

"We were excited to hear that the creators of South Park were interested in featuring World of Warcraft in the opening of their new season, and we really enjoyed collaborating with them to make this happen. We're looking forward to sharing the experience with our employees and our players as well when the season debuts this week."[3]

As a reference to the episode, certain South Park Season 10 DVDs include a 14-day free trial for World of Warcraft. This did not affect the UK release of this season in 2009.[4]

Since the airing of the episode, the fictitious Sword of a Thousand Truths was featured in the World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade beta test as a reward to the game's arena system, although it did not have the same capabilities as in the episode.[5]

The episode features the song "Live to Win" by KISS vocalist Paul Stanley.

Production length[edit]

Although the planning of the episode and data-collecting began on September 1, 2006, the actual production of the machinima was done in five "shooting" days, the first being September 20, 2006, which lasted about 3–5 hours, and the last being October 3, 2006, the day before the episode aired.[2] The regular South Park animation was created simultaneously, with all the other non-machinima episodes of the series routinely finishing within 12 hours of their airing as well.[2][6]

Parker was deeply unhappy with the episode the day before its broadcast, telling to the show's producers, "I've lost it. I don't know how to do this anymore." He begged executive producer Anne Garefino to call Comedy Central and inform them that the show would not air, remarking, "I don't want the South Park legacy to be ruined, and this show is going to ruin it, because it's so bad." Parker went home unable to sleep and was surprised the following day that the episode was so well received.[7]


In patch 3.0.2, preceding the release of the World of Warcraft expansion pack, Wrath of the Lich King, Blizzard included a "Make Love, Not Warcraft" PvP achievement, gained by using the "hug" emote on a dead enemy before they release their spirit.[8]

The then-fictitious video game played by Butters in this episode, Hello Kitty Island Adventure, was referenced in a 2008 April Fools' Day joke by the official Sanrio blog. This blog post announced an "Island Adventure" expansion to the MMORPG Hello Kitty Online, which consisted of a shrinking of the game world to a single desert island, the introduction of a race of foul-mouthed creatures, and PvP based on the power struggle between Hello Kitty and Badtz-Maru.[9] In 2023, the video game Hello Kitty Island Adventure was announced for Apple Arcade, and was released on July 28th, 2023. Zack Zwiezen from Kotaku noted the similarities between the name of the game Butters' played, and the title of the upcoming video game.[10] During a press preview of Hello Kitty Island Adventure, Jill Koch, the senior vice president of Sanrio's marketing, sales and business development, stated that Sanrio and the game has "no tie-in or affiliation with South Park".[11]

Also, in the Wrath of the Lich King remake of the Naxxramas raid instance, a sword called Slayer of the Lifeless was added, bearing the flavour text "Foretold by Salzman", as a reference to Salzman from accounting and a weapon capable of killing that which has no life. The model of the weapon is the same as the one used for the Sword of a Thousand Truths.[12]

The United in Stormwind expansion of Hearthstone added "Elwynn Boar" and "Sword of a Thousand Truths" cards with abilities referencing the events of the episode.[13]


"Make Love, Not Warcraft" received critical acclaim. IGN gave it an overall rating of 9.3, labeling it as "one of the funniest episodes ever produced".[14] The original television airing of the episode drew 3.4 million viewers, most between the ages of 18 and 49. This popularity made the episode Comedy Central's highest-rated midseason premiere since the year 2000.[15] However, the highest ratings for the tenth season belong to the season's premiere, "The Return of Chef", which drew more than 3.5 million viewers.[16] In 2007, this episode won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Animated Program (for Programming Less Than One Hour).[17] Fans voted the episode into 1st place in a major 2011 South Park voting held under the "Year of the Fan" iTunes promotion.[18]

Home media[edit]

"Make Love, Not Warcraft", along with the thirteen other episodes from South Park's tenth season, was released on a three-disc DVD set in the United States on August 21, 2007. The set includes brief audio commentaries by series co-creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone for each episode.[19]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Records, Guinness World (2008). Guinness World Records 2017 Gamer's Edition. Guinness World Records. ISBN 978-1-910561-41-6.
  2. ^ a b c d ""Make Love, Not Warcraft" interview". 2006-11-15. Archived from the original on 2007-05-19. Retrieved 2012-01-31.
  3. ^ "South Park celebrates 10 groundbreaking seasons!!!". Archived from the original on 2006-10-20. Retrieved 2006-11-04.
  4. ^ Hayward, Andrew (2007-08-07). "South Park DVD to Pack World of Warcraft Trial". Archived from the original on 2007-10-28. Retrieved 2008-01-27.
  5. ^ Sliwinski, Alexander (2006-10-13). "The Sword of a Thousand Truths in Burning Crusade Beta". Joystiq. Retrieved 2008-06-06.
  6. ^ Parker, Trey; Stone, Matt (2007). "Audio commentary for "Make Love, Not Warcraft"". South Park – The Complete Tenth Season (DVD). Paramount Home Entertainment.
  7. ^ Clarisse Loughrey (February 9, 2016). "The classic episode South Park's creator Trey Parker begged not to be aired". The Independent. Retrieved March 21, 2016.
  8. ^ "Make Love, Not Warcraft achievement". Wowpedia. Curse Inc. Retrieved 2010-11-04.
  9. ^ Whitcomb, Daniel (2008-04-01). "Breaking News: Hello Kitty Island Adventures expansion announced!". Engadget. Retrieved 2023-07-07.
  10. ^ Zwiezen, Zack (27 June 2023). "New Hello Kitty Game Is Basically Animal Crossing, A Deadly Combo". Kotaku. Retrieved 7 July 2023.
  11. ^ Parrish, Ash (2023-07-14). "Hello Kitty Island Adventure is real but has nothing to do with South Park". The Verge. Retrieved 23 August 2023.
  12. ^ "Wowhead - Slayer of the Lifeless".
  13. ^ "New Card Revealed for United in Stormwind by Sway Bae - Elwynn Boar & Sword of a Thousand Truths". Out of Cards. Retrieved 2021-07-21.
  14. ^ Iverson, Dan (2006-10-05). "South Park: "Make Love, Not Warcraft" review". IGN. Retrieved 2021-10-24.
  15. ^ TV/Radio notes, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, October 12, 2006
  16. ^ "Chef's grisly exit is a South Park hit". Reuters. 2006-03-24. Retrieved 2006-11-14.
  17. ^ "2007 Primetime Emmy Awards nominations". Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. 2007-09-08. Archived from the original on 2009-09-17. Retrieved 2007-01-09.
  18. ^ "South Park: Year of the Fan". iTunes Store. 2011. Retrieved January 6, 2012.
  19. ^ Iverson, Dan (November 22, 2006). "South Park: The Complete Tenth Season DVD Review". IGN. Retrieved April 30, 2017.

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