Patriotism

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Reading this post on WoW.com got me thinking about the whole idea of Alliance vs Horde in WoW, and how important it actually is, lore-wise. It’s amazing how much the significance varies as you progress through the game and how the events taking place dictate how far we are from all killing each other.

Prior to World of Warcraft, the RPG games were based mainly around the Orcs vs Humans and the Second and Third Wars. When you start out in WoW however, all you really know is that the war is being fought in far-off lands and you need to help out your people by dealing with the problems closer to home. For example, the Defias Brotherhood, who have partially taken control of the Human lands due in the absence of the army, or the cultists stirring up trouble in Durotar. You spend a lot of time clearing out mines and caves, gathering food, running errands for citizens and delivering messages.

As you progress, you gradually experience more of the world and you interact with other factions and races. You begin to realise that the war has affected all walks of life, from cities being empty of soldiers to deserted buildings and a lack of supplies. You also start to get into small skirmishes with the opposition – for example, while progressing through Ashenvale (which is very war-orientated in places) you might come across Warsong Gulch and taste real battle, or you might experience a Crossroads raid.

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Blizzcon review: Part five

Having covered the more major points of the Cataclysm expansion – at least, those which have been announced so far – in my previous posts, I’m going to cover two things today and then finish up tomorrow with the smaller features. Also, I’m not going to discuss the lore of the expansion at all right now, because I’ve talked about parts of it already and quite frankly everyone and their brother has heard what’ll be happening. I might take a bit of a look at the areas which will be changed significantly in the future, but not at this time. Anyway, onwards.

It made me very happy when Blizzard announced their plans for cross-server instances. By opening up the LFG to your entire battlegroup, it ought to significantly reduce wait times for PuG instances – in my experience it tends to be the tanks you end up waiting for most, but whatever it is you need, you now have a much greater pool of players to choose from. Just don’t try to recruit players from other servers by accident!

The new system will not support raids. I’m not sure why not – people do PuG raids, and there is always the chance that they’ll be struggling for players, but maybe the hardware won’t support it or something. Admittedly it’s not much of an issue; the heroic instances put much more of a strain on the server.

As a very welcome side effect of this change, the ubiquitous problem of “Additional instances cannot be launched” will actually finally be fixed too! I forget whether it’s because of the hardware overhaul or the fact that all the players on your realm won’t be crammed into the same server space or what, but regardless it’s going away, which is fantastic. I honestly detest that message.

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Blizzcon review: Part four

Image courtesy of WoW.com

Image courtesy of WoW.com

As a guild leader, I was very excited to hear about the upcoming changes to the guild system for WoW. The interface hasn’t changed in the slightest since the original release of the game, except to incorporate guild banks, and the interwebs are rife with stories of how hard it is to add in another rank, set permissions for members, and so on.

So when it was announced at Blizzcon that things like guild achievements and a recruiting interface would be added, I was overjoyed. Guild currency? Yes! Guild recipes? Yes! Benefits for doing things as a guild? Yes! Guild leveling system? Yes!

Since my guild is very casual, and very small, we don’t have the ability to, say, take a guild group into Ulduar and come out with proto-drakes, or to be able to go into Naxxramas and bring back an Immortal achievement. These sorts of things really are the only way to show off as a guild right now.

However, once they implement the guild features in Cataclysm, I’m hopeful that this will change. Guild achievements are going to be a way for us to show off what we’re made of without having to do the utmost hardcore things in the game. Simply by doing normal things, for example daily quests and crafting, the guild will benefit.

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Blizzcon review: Part three

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As previously mentioned, today is Worgen day, so without further ado, let’s get on with it.

Keeping to the same format as the Goblins, I’m going to look at the lore behind the newest Alliance race first. Now, I will admit I was a little disappointed to see that the Cataclysm Worgen were from Gilneas, and not original Worgen from their home world, because the lore would frankly have been much more interesting, not least because I really want to know who or what the Lords of the Emerald Flame are that they’re fighting.

However, the way Blizzard have gone with it does make more sense with regard to the Worgen joining the Alliance. To summarize the plot, Archmage Arugal’s werewolf curse spread past the Greymane Wall and infected the Gilneans, who sort of descended into civil war – the infected versus the uninfected. In the end though, all the citizens were affected, but not before they managed to create a potion which allows them to control their shapeshifting and presumable bloodlust. Now that Arthas has been defeated and the Cataclysm has torn the Wall apart, the Forsaken have decided to claim Lordaeron for their own, and are marching on Gilneas. The Gilneans, needing both a cure and protection from the undead, have joined back with the Alliance they gave up on after the Second War.

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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!

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Thoughts about Cataclysm

In light of the newest Cataclysm speculation / news that WoW.com has reported on (see their posts here and here for the original sources), and because I didn’t have a particular post planned for today, I’m going to dissect the recent ‘findings’ by going through the notes they’ve made, and get more and more excitable as we go on.

At this time I would like to note that these ‘patch notes’ have NOT been confirmed and are based upon the original post at MMO-Champion, but for the purposes of this post I’m going to take them as granted. Also, when this was written I had only read the summary at WoW.com, and not the original post, which goes into more detail. The following is a summation of my thoughts based upon WoW.com’s summary.

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Cataclysm speculation

Now that the news from yesterday has been out for about a day, I think it’d be a bit silly to keep hiding things behind breaks, as everyone should have heard the name of the new expansion, Cataclysm, at the very least. So you’ve been warned; from now on, I won’t be concealing or announcing any spoilers I mention.

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