• MMO/Gaming

    No Pandas for Me



    Since I began playing Warcraft back in Vanilla WoW, this is the first expansion that I haven’t ordered as soon as it became available, waited for eagerly, preparing by getting banks and final achievements and so on done and been waiting to hit the servers as soon as they opened. This makes me feel a bit melancholy…I’ve played this game for so many years and always been in and out of love with it. I feel nostalgic and sad.

    At this point, loving Guild Wars 2 and with several other games that I could happily go back to (The Secret World, Rift) it just isn’t economically feasible. I probably will buy it and play at some point, just not immediately. I’ll play through it to the new level cap and then get bored and quit as always. Warcraft is a raiding game, in the end. Quests and content are wonderful, and I thoroughly enjoy levelling through new content. I don’t raid anymore, however, so dungeons are out, and with no friends playing I won’t run small instances. “GoGoGo” epeen jerks on their thousandth run of an instance aren’t kind to players new to the encounter, and it is rarely pleasant.

    I also have bad memories of the MoP beta, and the poor quest design – memorialised in the screenshot below. Making something that one person at a time has to click, and making that thing a roadblock to further advancement, was a shockingly naive design decision to make…and it wasn’t the only one.

    And yet…and yet it still makes me melancholy, as though I have moved on from a relationship with someone that I once loved.


  • MMO/Gaming

    Mists of Pandaria Cinematic

    The cinematics that Blizzard puts out are just so damned gorgeous. I wish they would just do a Warcraft movie already – there is no one who could do it better.

    I’m still not planning on playing MoP at launch, but will purchase it at a later date. But this is pretty freakin’ sweet.


  • MMO/Gaming

    Not Wishing I Was Here

    Due to the way Blizzard handled the MoP beta (and also to my ability to hold a grudge), I finally got access to the beta but haven’t been playing. Phil has been playing, and I’ve looked over his shoulder a time or two, but I haven’t wanted to log in. I did today finally, just for the hell of it, and found that I’d only been missing a lot of really stupid quest design and bad manners and childishness on the part of players. So if you’re not in the beta, don’t worry…you’re not missing much.


  • MMO/Gaming

    Bait and Switch

    I’m the Queen of Useless Gestures and as such I have just written Blizzard a Very Stern Letter. Yes, some spotty teen in a customer service centre far away will just bin it, but at the time it defused a bit of aggression.

    I would be terrified to admit how much I’ve spent on MMOs over the years. I’ve been playing Warcraft off and on since 2005. When I say off and on, I mean that I usually kept my account active in case I wanted to play. For a year or so I kept two active subscriptions. I’ve paid for many character transfers, faction transfers, name changes, pets, mounts, etc. If I added all of that up I would have to cry as I could have had a very swank holiday somewhere at the very least. It’s always been worth it because gaming is my release, but no one can deny that it can be quite an investment.

    In any event, recently I signed up for the Annual Pass just because I wanted MoP beta access (and Phil was going to play Diablo 3, as I wasn’t interested). I haven’t even been playing, but I’ve been paying for that damned Annual Pass because I agreed to, and one should keep their agreements. Unless one is Blizzard, that is. We should all have done the math, actually. Over one million people signed up for the pass. One Million. A server can hold an estimated 10k players. Everyone who invested in the pass would presumably want to play. Are they going to bring on the hundreds of servers needed to let everyone in? Of course not. And so I, like quite a lot of other players raging on the forums right now, haven’t been invited and probably aren’t going to.

    No one likes to be slighted, or feel like a fool. No one likes to be ripped off, which is basically what has happened. They could have brought the extra servers on. They could have stopped selling the Annual Pass once they knew that they weren’t going to be able to handle their half of the bargain. But no. And that is what really pisses me off.

    Poor show, Blizz. Very poor show.

  • MMO/Gaming

    Mists of Pandaria

    There are a lot of conversations going on this morning on the newly-trademarked Mists of Pandaria.

    The comments on the Massively article were interesting – I had always believed in the statement that Pandaren were originally scrapped because you weren’t allowed to represent pandas in such a way in China. Evidently, that is not true, and as one commenter pointed out, Perfect World has playable panda characters. (I would hazard a guess that Perfect World may have a larger player base than Warcraft -I could be wrong- but either way that clearly demonstrates that China doesn’t have a problem with panda characters.)

    Another commenter provided these to images to illustrate the point that China didn’t have a problem with Pandaren, but they did take exception to Chinese pandas wearing Japanese armour. Fair enough.


    If this trademarked name isn’t simply a red herring, think of the possibilities.

    What would I like to see? Make the Pandaren a new race and hero class (battle monk) which avoids the massive snit-fit that would ensue if you “gave” them to one side or the other. Or, make them a neutral race that either side could play…which would be a massive departure for Blizzard. If you don’t make them a neutral hero class race, then you would only have battle monks. If they areĀ  a neutral race, allow them to any class, and give them their own capital city.

    And that idea opens up something that I would LOVE to see…a Chinese-themed fantasy city done as only Blizzard could do it. I’ve always loved the feel of the Eastern cities in Guild Wars, the Dragon Festival and so on, and I think it would be amazing in Warcraft.

    *sigh* We can dream, can’t we?