After one year of the exit on US market, many world of warcraft players ask informations on the first, inevitable, expansion. For answer to these questions, the californian software house is preparing an event for his fan the 28th and 29th of October “Blizzcon”, where Blizzard will reveale the details on the World of Warcraft’s future. For this date, the TGM readers, already known…
Kindly invited by Vivendi to visit Blizzard offices, we have the chance to have a preview about the details of “The Burning Crusade” the first World of Warcraft expansion that will create a revolution on some aspect of this bestseller game.
First of all the Background: Sargeras, the corrupted titan that represent the worst in the WoW universe, it’s always intented to destroy all the universe, has begin his work, his troups have never encountered any obstacle and have not stopped excepted for the resistance on Azeroth(that is both the region, the continent, the planet). But his actual plan for now is ignoring this place, for concentrating on the Outland. This is the name given at the point where are found the rest of the planet Draenor, the original planet of the orcs, rests that flown on the emptiness and grant the access to the Twisting Nether, a sort of parallel dimension that allow to reach every planes of esistance in the universe. It’s unuseful to say that a resource like this, a “node” like for invading all the worlds it’s extremely appetible for Sargera’s demoniac forces, and here we’ll be called the Azerothc forces, the only one that has shown the ability to combat the titan and his followers, Archimonde and Kill’Jaeden.
All the expansion will be centrated on the Outland, Medivh and the Dark Portal, to make procede on the most important story of the world of warcraft. At least other than Outlands two new dungeons will be introduced on Azeroth(the planet), scrictly tied to characthers and events encountered in the expansion. The first will be presented in details at Blizzcon (it will be possible to play with it) and it will be many probably a 5 characthers istance – but it’s still on decision – situated in Kharazan, the Medivh’s tower that’s found in the Deadwind Pass (between Duskwood and the Swamp of Sorrows). From the descriptions received and the short tour that we have osserved we know that it will quikly evolve from the “classic undead istance” to something stranger, where can be encountered the numeous results of the magic experiments of Medivh.
Much more unusual will be the Caverns of Time, raid instance in Tanaris that will allow to travel in the time and participate to the most important events of the story of Azeroth, from the openm of the dark Portal by Medivh, the liberation from slavery of Thrall and the mythologic battle of Mount Hyal (seen in Warcraft III) when the forces of humans, orcs and elves battle united to defeat Archimonde. All this is possible because the Caverns of Time is the place where bronze dragons, headed by Nordozmu, control the streaming of the time.
Tecnically the dungeon in the futur can be expanded to allow the visit of other importans moment of WoW story.
These are the news that can be alredy expected: the surprise begin with the max level that will be increased to lvl 70. (Here is a little comment redactional about the exp lost at lvl 60 for quest done and experience not earned).
Altough Hero Class are not be announced (in the words of Rob Pardo, Vice President of Game Design “if we mistake we hero class we can definitely ruin the game”), Blizzard has not denied that they could be included in the expansion but they have not promised it. Other game like Everquest with Alternate Advancement Point and Daoc with Master Level has shown how this players evolution can be very complicated.
The second great news is that both the faction will have a new race (no new class). Because one of the reason alliance have more player than horde seem to be tied to an extetical reason(horde races are “ugly”): orcs, trolls, taurens and forsakens will be joined by the Blood Elves, a little smaller than their cousin, that are dedicated to magic in his darker former and dependent from it. The blood elves could sure be mages, warlock and warriors, it’s not certain if they can be rogue or hunter, at the moment they have a racial trait called Mana tap that leak slowy the mana from enemy, that can be applied more time, like sunder armor that gonna charge a second ability called “Arcane Torrent”(but the head of development Kaplan continued to call it “Arcane Torment) that work like a “silent” spell with an area, this has left us a little surprised because it seems a little unbalanced also against a warrior, to make a confront, but is early to speak about it, because the exit that will be next year is still far and many things will be surely changed. Very interesting is the characterization given to this race, with a starting area very lightly e sunny but also frightful with many signs of magic used for frivolous scopes (deforming plants, palace floating in the air) and strange crystals containing demons imprisoned to take advantage of their energies. The actual “home” of Blood Elves is what remains of Quel’Thalas, it is found northern tha Eastern Plaguelands, after a valley currently sealed from a stack of logs, it will composed of 3 zone Eversong Woods with the capital city Silvermoon, Ghostland and Zul’Aman, a region inhabited by trolls that could host or become a new thematic dungeon like Zul’Farrak and Zul’Gurub. The new race of the alliance has not be announced and will probably announced short time after Blizzcon, but we can make always an hypothesis: thinking the “beautiful race” is gonna to horde and looking at all chances, nothing can prevent us to think about pandarean, introduced originally like “april fouls” and then incorporated truly in Warcraft III (this can be more than a supposition, but is better stop here..).
The news are more: there will be a news profession using Jewelcrafting, we don’t know if with this “work” it will possible to forge ring, amulets or trinket, but for sure it will be possible to craft gems to inseter in “socket” found in the armor and weapons, like in Diablo2. To support this blacksmither, tailor and leatherworker can craft item with socket for host gems for jewelcrafting.
Here Toso(a TGM redactor) still complain about the impossibility of crafting “staff”: but is stil true that is possible that jewelcrafting is not the only profession added in the expansion and things can still change before the exit of the expansion.
Continuing with the news about Outlands, that will be divided in many reagion, from rock and devasted Hellfire Peninsula to the forest of Zenga Marsh, one of the few zone of Draenor survived from destruction. The most interesting news for the maniac of the story is that in one of this region, the Shadowmoon Valley, it is found Black Temple where Illidan reside, true “boss” of all the zone.
Thinking that only Arthas was enable to stop the ex demon hunter(seen in WarcraftIII and expansion) the players also of 70 lvl have still something hard to face. It’s true that they can count on many new resources, included the desired flying mounts: responding the thousand requests of players, Blizzard has decided that players once reached lvl 70 can put their hands, at the end of a long and hard quest, on a flying mount that can be only used only in the Outland, using the “floating island” founded in the region.
There are no news about the engine, also if seems blood elves model will have 20% more of polygons compared to “old” race models. The graphic should have in the following month a little restyle with the introduction of the atmospheric effect but the rest should remain the same, also if they are experimenting various trick (like Specular Environment Mapping) to improve look in general. They are concentrating more on the contens, the graphic engine is always in time to be changed. From the tecnichal poins, it can be expected from the expansion the possibility to play BG “from server”, that can be participated to players from all the realms, thing that theorically will bring the end of the queue.
Wait for other anticipations and modernization to come in the next months, expecially thinking we have to discover the race that will join the alliance (we have told our idea).