WoW – Mists of Pandaria. Diary review – Part 1.

Yeah, I know it’s not on a nintendo console, but I play it so I am reviewing it…

The WoW Gamer that I am.

There are several kinds of World of Warcraft (WoW) players based on the 4 main aspects of the game, either Arena, PvP battlegrounds, Raiding or levelling/exploring/questing, is the most important aspect of the game to you. It’s of course not that simple. I enjoy all aspects of this game except arena, but love levelling and questing, I’m in no rush to level up, and all those years ago when Azeroth felt mammoth in size and the game was unforgiving to the noob, there was a real sense of exploration and achievement, and always something to strive for and do, and they are my fondest memories, and I even remember a fan telling me that one day I would probably be walking around a place called Pandaria, and it was the big empty space you could get to properly in Stonetalon Mountains. I was positively gleeful about managing to get in Hyjal, back before even The Burning Crusade came out. I was well into it! But I remain a noob, or just appalling as a Rogue! Being such a noob there was/is/never no point in me bothering with Arena, or raiding for that matter…I got booted quite often, and I was trying my best!!!!

How that effects this Review

So therefore this review will having nothing to do with the raiding or Arena because I couldn’t comment on them honestly. This is a review on the levelling experience, maybe some of the 5 man dungeons the new continent Pandaria and all and any other changes that have effected me. This review won’t be talking specs and all the jibba jabba of the wow addicts.

Where I stood with WoW 48 hours be Launch night.

I began playing WoW when ‘Vanilla’ was about 5 months old, and I have endured the many changes to the game, but the last expansion, Cataclysm lost me. My Azeroth was gone and all of a sudden it felt very small and all those places you couldn’t get to and imagined being put to good use became lakes, sea, or nothing…Or remained bog standard mountainous space. The intrigue and sense of exploration died with Cataclysm. I played it for almost 2 months, and I only reactivated my account 48 hours before Mists on Pandaria launched. I’ve never been an avid player but I have never gone that long without playing it. So the test for MoP is weather or not it can salvage my long-term relationship with the game. Having spent £39 quid I at least hope I don’t waste the monthly subscription fee! Well anyway it’s about time I got on with the bloody review.

PART ONE: My Return to Azeroth.

So I log in…..

With it having been well over a year since I played WoW I logged into to discover many changes I didn’t like. What have they done to the talent system FFS?! Is this the world of Warcraft or the World of Facepalm? (Facepalm). Obviously as I like levelling I enjoy the little reward of a talent point each time I ding! And I actually enjoyed trying to figure out the best spec…I didn’t cheat! I should have for how badly I play but so what. Now I only get 5 points across for 90 whole levels?! That sucks, some else taken out of the levelling experience which is my thing!  Regardless of the new talents I also felt like I had to relearn how to play a Rogue. (but to jump very far ahead, I will say I still want my points, but a lot of new things for Rogues do make sense.)

I was then quickly reminded of how much I didn’t like the redesign of Orgrimmar, but I jumped for joy when I saw I had 3000 gold, only to reminded by my brother of how little that is these days! So I escaped Org in disgust and went about some questing, doing some of Cataclysm stuff I hadn’t done, and I will say I totally missed the Firelands before and it’s actually a decent-ish daily questing hub. Then I queued in the sky for some battlegrounds (dear lord!) because I do like AV and AB. But how I wish they had never changed AV. How I long for a traditional AV!  Still they remain the one thing I still can get enjoyment out of.

So basically I was reminded of how lukewarm I felt about the game, it was a rather moot 48 hours waiting for MoP. But what brought me back was launch night of WOTLK, that was my favorite expansion and that launch night in particular was another of my favorite memories related to WoW. Sadly, I wasn’t ever going to replicate that night because I have inconvenient cunt of a cousin who decided to headbutt a copper so I had to go to court in the morning, but I absolutely waited with positivity. I’d always had a fascination with Pandaria and the lost southern continent, I was getting what I wanted. Bit annoyed they turned out to be the same thing, but I was willing to get over that!

11pm Launch night!

It began, as all expansions do, with confusion, Where the hell do I go? Even though the game pretty much does absolutely everything for you these days, I, like most people (don’t try to deny I saw you) went to the wrong place! Everyone sat on a boat when you had to fly to a Zeppelin in the sky! Plonkers! If you actually  looked at the mini-map right in front of you knew that! I said I was a noob, but it turns out i’m not the only one. So even if by mistake this expansion began with a funny memory, and I suspect it was a stitch up!!! Call me weird but that is a gaming memory I won’t forget.

When I finally got to Pandaria I was delighted. No question it is the prettiest expansion of the lot, the design is sublime. Quickly it became obvious story was going to play a bigger part than ever before, and I have no complaint with that either. The quests in the starting area alone, in just getting 2 thirds of the way to lv 86 demonstrated more diversity than the rest of WoW combined, well at least it seemed so, and the variety in the new types of quests was definitely welcomed as well.

It was a nice change to see so many changes and not wish they hadn’t changed anything. Vote Obama. Questing always needed more variety and MoP has built on previous attempts and gone to town.

I got another great launch night experience that’s for sure and the opening zone is spot on. Any complaints aren’t exclusive to this zone or expansion.

So This was my impression 3/4 hours into the game before I had to sleep, and to be clear it was a positive one. The only disheartening thing that came to light was when I went to chat to my brothers and friends to see how they had progressed and they were already level 87, I was taking my time because I hate how quick it is to level these days, and that was quick! Predictable, but a bit depressing. The jury is still out!

Tune in next time, which follows on the morning after when I actually get to play it all day because my cousins copper-nutting court case got adjourned because the judged wanted to take an early lunch.

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