Blizzcon review: Part two

Continuing to look at the news from Blizzcon ’09, I’m today going to examine all the news about the first new playable race, the Goblins.

Now as you probably know, the Goblins are going to be affiliated with the Horde. While the Steemwheedle Cartel in particular has always been friendlier towards the Horde, these Goblins have really just joined the Horde for protection from Alliance troops; I’m not going to go into detail about the lore behind the race, but up until the Cataclysm they were mainly living on the Isle of Kezan in the South Seas. When Deathwing broke through from Deepholm, the volcano underneath Kezan became active. The Goblins fled for their lives, and a cunning Trade Prince saw opportunity for profit. Promising the Goblins safe passage away from the island on his ship, he took their life savings in exchange for transport, with the plan to sell them into slavery later. However, the ship got caught in a crossfire between an Alliance and Horde ship, and after the shipwreck the Goblins found themselves washed up among the Lost Isles, which are just off the coasts of Durotar and Azshara, and which are where the Goblin race will start in WoW.

So having seen their backstory and introduction, let’s take a look (literally and figuratively) at the in-game race itself.

Time is money, friend!

Time is money, friend!

As you can partially see from the picture, Goblins will be able to be played as Death Knights, Hunters, Mages, Priests, Rogues, Shamans, Warlocks and Warriors. I’m not sure how I feel about Goblin Warlocks – something there just doesn’t quite click for me – but ah well. They will (I believe) start off on Kezan and the quests will end up in the Lost Isles, which will contain areas for you for levels 1-15, and after that it’s off to Azshara where the capital city will be. After that, Stonetalon Mountains seems likely, or maybe the rehashed Barrens.

The Goblins racials are just plain awesome. Let’s take a look.

Best Deals Anywhere: Always receive the best possible gold discount, regardless of faction.

Right off the bat I’m thinking that they’re going to have to seriously buff the other racials to keep up with this. By rolling a Goblin, you’re going to buy items from anyone affiliated with a faction for the same price as someone who’s exalted would, no matter your standing, which is amazing. Trade goods, mounts, riding skills, repairs – everything. This will be a huge money saver.

Better Living Through Chemistry:  Alchemy skill increased by 15 and increased health/mana returns from potions you’ve made.

For Alchemists (who can really be any class) this will be good when you find you can make potions 15 levels above your skill level. Additionally, more health and mana back is always a good thing no matter what you’re doing.

Pack Hobgoblin: Instant, 30-minute cooldown — Calls in your personal servant, allowing you bank access for 1 minute.

Another ‘wow!’ ability. Bank access every thirty minutes will not only be hugely convenient whatever you’re doing or wherever you are, but also really great for grinding, as you’d no longer be limited to the bag space your character has. This is also good for anyone with multiple gear sets who might need to quickly switch out during a raid or similar.

Rocket Barrage: 30-yard range, Instant, 2-minute cooldown — Launches your belt rockets at an enemy, dealing 30 fire damage. Shares a cooldown with Rocket Jump.

Potentially handy in a situation where you need a quick and instant nuke, perhaps when you’re very low on health and need to finish off the enemy, this could be very useful. Still, it leaves one wondering where the Goblins store those rockets when they’re not visible on the character…

Rocket Jump: Instant, 2-minute cooldown: Activates your rocket belt to jump forward. Shares a cooldown with Rocket Barrage.

More of a novelty than a useful ability, this one, although if it works similar to a Mage’s Blink it might be good for close shaves when you need to escape.

Time Is Money: Cash in on a 1% increase to attack and casting speed.

Can’t go wrong with attacking and casting faster!

Overall, these racials scream ‘NERF US!’ to me. Unless Blizzard are going to really do up the other races, I think the Goblins might need to be toned down a little. Having said that, we’re not even into the beta yet, so there’s plenty of time.

Finally, the Goblin mount has been released, and it’s awesome. If I didn’t play Alliance almost exclusively, I’d roll a Goblin just for this, never mind all the brilliant stuff I’ve already mentioned.

It's a freakin' ROADSTER.

It's a freakin' ROADSTER.



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