With the NDA now lifted on Wrath of the Lich King, I can happily report that I’ve been playing it since the Friends and Family Alpha. While there are plenty of sites rambling on about mechanics, balance, and talents, not too many are yammering on about the lore.
Here it all is in two and a half words… it’s awesome.
I don’t know if the guys and gals at Blizz actually read that forum post of mine or came upon it themselves, but the immersion has definitely been cranked up a few notches.
Examples? I’ve got plenty (minor spoilers ahead).
Upon arriving in Northrend, I approached my first NPC only to have him look at me and say, “Oh my god, it’s you.”
Hunting down Garrosh Hellscream in Warsong Hold, he addressed me with, “Hello Cocles. Don’t think I’ve forgotten everything you did for me back in Nagrand.” Garrosh was quite happy to see me instead of the typical batch of noobs he had apparently been putting up with under his command since he had arrived in Northrend.
Saurfang is there, and he’s probably more happy to see me arrive than anyone.
For the Alliance? Keep in mind I tend to play Horde, so I may not know the knitty-gritties on the Alliance side, but I can say this… Fordragon is no longer in Stormwind.
Wrath of Lich King will be fabulous for lore lovers. There’s plenty of it. Story lines are accounted for, attention is paid, and plot holes, even in beta, are few and far between. In fact, there have been several instances now when I thought I had found a plot hole, only to find it accounted for a couple quests later.
And now for a word on Death Knights. You may remember my post where I discussed my ideas and hopes that the Death Knight opening would be as epic as having to bust out of Stratholme.
Well… it’s not. It’s much, much MORE. The opening zone for the Death Knights is possibly the most epic zone I have ever played in WoW. You’ll go from level 55 to 57 in the time it takes you to go through, and let me tell you this… it’s not static, and there’s an over-arching storyline with major characters throughout the entire thing. And these characters are NOT forgotten. You WILL see them again.
With Age of Conan, Warhammer: Age of Reckoning, Bioware’s KOTOR MMO (oh yes, more on that later), and Blizzard’s own barely announced second gen MMO all vying for a piece of WoW’s pie, one had to wonder if Blizzard would be able to pull the rabbit out of the hat of an almost four year old game. They did. You will be pleased. Get yourselves in the beta if you can. It’s worth every minute of playtime. My advice to starting out? Check out BOTH starting zones, the Borean Tundra and Howling Fjord (I did them in that order), and definitely, definitely create a Death Knight and play through its starting zone. You will NOT be sorry. The story the Death Knight players get to see when they create their character is literally the prequel chapter to the story everybody sees when they hit Northrend.
If you’re into lore, especially WoW lore, then you’re going to have a blast levelling up in Wrath of the Lich King.