New WoD models

Blizzard recently updated the World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor model viewer, with the female gnome and male tauren model. Blizzard writes

“Our character artists strived to recapture the charm of the classic models while taking advantage of the expressiveness of their fluid new animations to bring new life to these beloved characters. We hope you like the new looks as much as we enjoyed making them.”

Looking pretty good if you ask me. What do you think about the upcoming WoW expansion? Will you buy and play it?

 

Link to the WoW model viewer:

http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/warlords-of-draenor/#characters

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May 31st

News

Nintendo 2DS out in Oct. 12, cost $130

Today we were fortunate to receive the news from Nintendo. They will release a new hand held console, the Nintendo 2DS. It will be released in Oct. 12 and the cost will be 130$.

Nintendo writes

“The system features a distinctive fixed, slate-type form factor …. Nintendo 2DS maintains many of the same hardware features as Nintendo 3DS: dual screens, game-play controls and touch-screen features. The system also has backward compatibility with the existing library of more than 2,000 Nintendo DS games, as well as access to wireless connectivity features like multiplayer online game play, fun Nintendo Video content and great digitally delivered games in the Nintendo eShop.”

Here’s their entire press release.

Nintendo Offers Unrivaled Value and Variety This Holiday Season with Lower Wii U Price, Zelda Wii U Bundle and New Nintendo 2DS Portable

Top Nintendo Video Games Get Launch Dates Through the End of 2013

REDMOND, Wash.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Nintendo outlined a campaign that will offer consumers unprecedented levels of value and variety this holiday season. That proposition includes:

Nintendo 2DS, an entry-level dedicated portable gaming system that plays all Nintendo 3DS and Ninten …
Nintendo 2DS, an entry-level dedicated portable gaming system that plays all Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS games in 2D, launches on Oct. 12, the same day as Pokémon X and Pokémon Y. (Photo: Business Wire)

A $50 price drop for the Wii U Deluxe Set to a new suggested retail price of just $299.99, effective on Sept. 20.
A limited-edition Wii U bundle featuring The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD launching on Sept. 20.
The introduction of Nintendo 2DS, an entry-level dedicated portable gaming system that plays all Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo DS games in 2D. Nintendo 2DS launches Oct. 12, the same day as Pokémon X and Pokémon Y, at a suggested retail price of $129.99.
Dates for an outstanding lineup of Q4 video games for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U.
The announcements demonstrate Nintendo’s aggressive approach to providing new games and experiences available only on Nintendo platforms for all types of people this holiday season. Nintendo announced these items at the GameStop Managers Show in Las Vegas.

“Nintendo has one of the strongest and most diverse video game lineups in our history,” said Reggie Fils-Aime, Nintendo of America’s president and COO. “Today we’re making those unique Nintendo experiences more accessible and affordable. However you play and whatever you play, Nintendo has you covered.”

Nintendo 2DS

The newest member of the Nintendo 3DS family is designed specifically for anyone looking for a more affordable entry point into the world of Nintendo hand-held video games. Nintendo 2DS will be available in Red or Blue on Oct. 12 at a suggested retail price of $129.99.

Nintendo 2DS plays the entire library of packaged and downloadable games for Nintendo 3DS only in 2D. The system features a distinctive fixed, slate-type form factor, and optional carrying cases will be available in Red or Blue at launch at a suggested retail price of $12.99. Nintendo 2DS maintains many of the same hardware features as Nintendo 3DS: dual screens, game-play controls and touch-screen features. The system also has backward compatibility with the existing library of more than 2,000 Nintendo DS games, as well as access to wireless connectivity features like multiplayer online game play, fun Nintendo Video content and great digitally delivered games in the Nintendo eShop. To view a video of Nintendo 2DS, visit http://youtu.be/sAExBTWIp3M.

People eager to test drive the new system will have the chance beginning in October, when Nintendo 2DS joins a sampling tour in conjunction with Simon Malls that visits several different markets before it wraps up on Nov. 3. For more information about the tour, visit http://www.nintendo.com.

New Suggested Retail Price – Wii U Deluxe Set

Starting Sept. 20, the Deluxe version of Nintendo’s Wii U system will be reduced in price by $50, to a new suggested retail price of just $299.99. The new price makes Wii U an even greater value, particularly with the strong lineup of Wii U games available and on the way for the system in 2013. These include Pikmin 3, The Wonderful 101, EarthBound, New Super Luigi U, The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, Super Mario 3D World and Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze.

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD Bundle

A new limited-edition Wii U bundle featuring The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD launches on Sept. 20 at a suggested retail price of $299.99. The bundle includes a black Deluxe Wii U console; a GamePad controller adorned with gold lettering, a gold Hyrule crest and gold symbols from the game; a download code for the digital version of Hyrule Historia, a book that details the chronology, history and artwork of The Legend of Zelda series; and a code that can be used to download The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD from the Nintendo eShop immediately at no additional cost.

The digital version of The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD will also launch on Sept. 20, while the packaged version launches Oct. 4 with distinctive gold-foil packaging, both at a suggested retail price of $49.99. GameStop is also offering an exclusive Ganondorf figurine bundled with the packaged game at a suggested retail price of $54.99.

Q4 Games

The robust lineup of games on the way for Nintendo systems in Q4 includes:

Wii U

The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD: Launches Sept. 20 (downloadable) and Oct. 4 (packaged) at a suggested retail price of $49.99.
Wii Party U: Launches Oct. 25 bundled with a Wii Remote Plus controller and stand at a suggested retail price of $49.99.
Super Mario 3D World: Launches Nov. 22 at a suggested retail price of $59.99.
Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze: Launches Dec. 6 at a suggested retail price of $49.99.
Wii Fit U: Launches this holiday season. Further details, including launch date, pricing and bundling information, will be revealed at a later date.
Mario & Sonic at the Sochi 2014 Olympic Winter Games™: Launches this holiday season. Further details, including launch date and pricing, will be revealed at a later date.
Third-party titles: Previously announced titles on the way from Nintendo’s publishing partners include: Scribblenauts Unmasked: A DC Comics Adventure (Sept. 24) and LEGO Marvel Super Heroes (Fall) from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment; Skylanders SWAP Force (Oct. 13) and Call of Duty: Ghosts (Nov. 5) from Activision Publishing; Sonic Lost World (Oct. 22) from SEGA; and Rayman Legends (Sept. 3), Just Dance 2014 (Oct. 8), Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag (Oct. 29) and Watch_Dogs (Nov. 19) from Ubisoft.
Nintendo 3DS

The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds: Launches Nov. 22 at a suggested retail price of $39.99.
Mario Party: Island Tour: Launches Nov. 22 at a suggested retail price of $39.99.
Third-party titles: Previously announced titles on the way from Nintendo’s publishing partners include: Scribblenauts Unmasked: A DC Comics Adventure (Sept. 24); LEGO Marvel Super Heroes: Universe in Peril (Fall) and Batman: Arkham Origins Blackgate (Oct. 25) from Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment; Skylanders SWAP Force (Oct. 13) from Activision Publishing; Adventure Time: Explore the Dungeon Because I DON’T KNOW! (Nov. 19) from D3Publisher; and Sonic Lost World (Oct. 22) from SEGA.
Remember that Nintendo systems feature parental controls that let adults manage the content their children can access. For more information about this and other features, visit http://www.nintendo.com/wiiu and http://www.nintendo.com/3ds.

Nintendo 2DS will be offered for sale after FCC authorization is obtained.

 

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August 30th

News

World of Warcraft: Vol’jin: Shadows of the Horde

The new WoW lore book from Mist of Pandaria is here. It’s called Vol’jin: Shadows of the Horde.

Blizzard announces

Warchief Garrosh’s assassins strike at Vol’jin, leaving him at death’s door. But fate smiles on the wounded Darkspear leader when renowned brewmaster Chen Stormstout transports him to the safety of an isolated mountain monastery. There, Vol’jin wrestles with old hatreds smoldering between the Alliance and the Horde as he struggles to recover alongside a mysterious human soldier.

Yet this is only the beginning of Vol’jin’s worries. Soon, he becomes embroiled in an invasion of Pandaria launched by the Zandalari, revered trolls driven by dreams of conquest and power. This ancient tribe offers Vol’jin a chance to seize the glory that is the birthright of all trolls… an offer made even more tempting after Garrosh’s brazen treachery.

Amid these troubling events, Vol’jin is rocked by intense visions depicting his race’s grand history. As he questions where his loyalties lie, he knows he must make a choice about his own destiny that could save his people or damn them to languish under Garrosh’s heel.

Written by: Michael Stackpole
Release date: July 2, 2013
Preorder at amazon.

 

Excerpt from Vol’jin: Shadows of the Horde

When awareness came to him again, Vol’jin found himself whole and hale, strong of limb and standing tall. A fierce sun beat down on him as he stood in a courtyard with thousands of other trolls. They had nearly a head’s height on him, yet none of them made an issue of it. In fact, none of them seemed to notice him at all.

Another dream. A vision.

He did not immediately recognize the place, though he had a sense that he’d been there before. Or, rather,later, for this city had not surrendered to the surrounding jungle’s invasion. The stone carvings on walls remained crisp and clear. Arches had not been shattered. Cobbles had not been broken or scavenged. And the stepped pyramid, before which they all stood, had not been humbled by time’s ravages.

He stood amid a crowd of Zandalari, members of the troll tribe from which all other tribes had descended. They had become, over the years, taller than most and exalted. In the vision they seemed less a tribe than a caste of priests, powerful and educated, quite apt for leading.

But in Vol’jin’s time, their ability to lead had degraded. It is because their dreams all be trapped here.

This was the Zandalar empire at the height of its power. It dominated Azeroth but would fall victim to its own might. Greed and avarice would spark intrigues. Factions would split. New empires would rise, like the Gurubashi empire, which would drive Vol’jin’s Darkspear trolls into exile. Then it would fall too.

The Zandalari hungered for a return to the time when they were ascendant. It was a time when trolls were a most noble race. The trolls, united, had risen to heights which someone like Garrosh Hellscream could not possibly dream existed.

A sense of magic ancient and powerful flooded through Vol’jin, providing him the key to why he was seeing the Zandalari. Titan magic predated even the Zandalari. It was more powerful than they were. As high as the Zandalari had been above things that slithered and stung, so were the titans above them—likewise their magic.

Vol’jin moved through the crowd as might a specter. The Zandalari faces glowed with fearsome smiles—the sort he’d seen on trolls when trumpets blared and drums pounded, inviting them to battle. Trolls were built to rend and slay—Azeroth was their world, and all in it were subject to their dominion. Though Vol’jin might differ with other trolls as to the identity of their enemies, he was no less fierce in battle, and vastly proud of how the Darkspears had conquered their foes and liberated the Echo Isles.

So Bwonsamdi be mocking me with this vision. The Zandalari dreamed of empire, and Vol’jin wished the best for his people. Vol’jin knew the difference. It was simple enough to plan for slaughter and far more complex to create a future. For a loa who liked his sacrifices bloody and battle-torn, Vol’jin’s vision held little appeal.

Vol’jin ascended the pyramid. As he moved up, things became more substantial. Whereas before he had been in a silent world, he could now feel drums thrumming up through the stone. The breeze brushed over his light fur, tousled his hair. It brought with it the sweet scent of flowers—a scent just slightly sharper than that of spilled blood.

The drumming pounded into him. His heart beat in time. Voices came to him. Shouts from below. Commands from above. He refused to retreat but stopped climbing higher. It seemed he might be rising through time as he would be rising through lake water. If he reached the top, he would be there with the Zandalari and feel what they felt. He would know their pride. He would breathe in their dreams.

He would become one with them.

He would not allow himself that luxury.

His dream for the Darkspear tribe might not have excited Bwonsamdi, but it provided life for the Darkspears. The Azeroth the Zandalari had known had been utterly and irrevocably changed. Portals had been opened. New peoples had come through. Lands had been shattered, races warped, and more power released than the Zandalari knew existed. The disparate races—elves, humans, trolls, orcs, and even goblins, among others—had united to defeat Deathwing, creating a power structure that revolted and offended the Zandalari. The Zandalari hungered to reestablish rule over a world that had so changed that their dreams could never come true.

Vol’jin caught himself. “Never” be a powerful word.

In an eyeblink the vision shifted. He now stood at the pyramid’s apex, looking down into the faces of the Darkspears. His Darkspears. They trusted his knowledge of the world. If he told them they could recapture the glory that was once theirs, they would follow him. If he commanded them to take Stranglethorn or Durotar, they would. The Darkspears would boil out of the islands, subjugating all in their path, simply because he wished it done.

He could do it. He could see a way. He’d had Thrall’s ear, and the orc had trusted him in military matters. He could spend the months of recuperation plotting out the campaigns and organizing strategies. Within a year or two of his return from Pandaria—if that was still where he was—the Darkspear banner would be anointed with blood and more feared than it already was.

And what be that gaining me?

I would be pleased.

Vol’jin spun. Bwonsamdi stood above him, a titanic figure, ears forward and straining to gather the pulsed shouts from below. It would gain you peace, Vol’jin, for you be doing what your troll nature demands.

Is that all we be meant for?

The loa do not require you to be more. What purpose be there in your bein’ more?

Vol’jin looked for an answer to that question. His search left him staring at a void. Its darkness reached and engulfed him, leaving him with no answer and certainly no peace.

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June 7th

News

World of Warcraft loses a million subscribers since february

Historys largest MMO hit game has shrunk some more. And a good some at that. In only the last three months World of Warcraft has lost over a million subscribers.

This news hit the scene after yesterdays quarterly investor call. The announcement was made by Activision-Blizzard.

It was reported that this february World of Warcraft had 9.6 million subscribers. Now that number is down to 8.3 million subscribers. A huge loss of around 1.3 million active subscribers.

8.3 million active subscribers is still an enormous amount of people paying for the chance to play an online game every month, however it is now obvious that Blizzard must take steps to regain some of this previously owned leverage.
Discussions have for some time circulated around Blizzard wanting to take WoW back to more of a vanilla feel. Some argue that this is the only way for rapid subscriber growth for the game.

A million subscribers less for WoW might create an opportunity for other companies. There will no doubt be a real vacuum to fill, with so many players leaving the game.

Will the loss of so many players mean something for the rest of the gaming market? If so, what? And how should the vacuum be filled?

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May 9th

News

Why the subscription MMO has to make it

sub

In a recent interview with ign.com the game director of Guild Wars 2, Colin Johanson, said the following.

“It takes some serious balls to jump into the MMO industry and go after it. You’re basically betting your company any time you decide that the thing you’re going to make is an MMO. They take so long to make, and they take so much money that either you’re successful and you’re going to do really well, or you’re not and your company’s toast. If you have a really big backer, maybe you can survive that but it’s a huge risk.”

Johansson is of course right. However lately there has been a trend within many gaming communities to promote and argue the idea that the era of the subscription mmo is over.

 

The two arguments

There seems to be two main arguments for the death of the subscription mmo era.

The first is that since there are several free to play mmos out there today, players have come to expect to play mmos for free. Competition has driven down the possibility for taking a monthly subscription fee and the market simply won’t support this model anymore.

The second argument seems to be the examples of the recently launched mmos, originally planned to be following the subscription model, but since then was forced to go free to play. And there are some good examples here.

As Kate Cox over at Kotaku notes,

“All of Sony Online Entertainment’s titles, including EverQuest and its successor, EverQuest II, are now without a subscription fee. City of Heroes and Lord of the Rings Online haven’t required a monthly charge in several years. DC Universe Online saw a 700% jump in revenue when it became free.”

Guild Wars 2 is of course another example of a successful free to play mmo game.

While some clearly makes a compelling case for this opinion, there is another side.

The first of these arguments has a serious problem. It’s very hard predicting what the public and the mmo players will and will not pay for. It’s easy to claim that people simply won’t pay a monthly subscription fee anymore, but it’s harder to back that up. Sure the market has shown these tendencies the past couple of years, but this can easily change.

The history of gaming is full of success stories that turned things upside down, and this goes way beyond World of Warcraft. When the original Starcraft game was released the market was crowded with competition. Great rts games like Age of Empires, Command & Conquer, Red Alert, Settlers, Total Annihilation, games from the Star Wars series and a little later Cossacks and Empire Earth. Little did anyone know what a massive hit the original Starcraft games would be. But no one furthermore knew that this small game would, in many ways almost singlehandedly, create the progaming and esport scene and set its tone for decades to come. Just as World of Warcraft, Starcraft changed the entire gaming industry.
In the light of this, who are we to say what gamers want, in these kinds of macro terms?

The market side of this first argument is equally flawed. Yes there is more competition in the mmo scene today but with examples like World of Warcraft and EveOnline, with almost 10 million unique subscribers every month combined, is it really logical to presume that there is no more space on the gaming market for additional subscription mmos? Is it impossible to imagine a new great subscription based  mmo, attracting customers both from todays subscription scene and free to play scene? It doesn’t seem to be any real reason to make such a claim.

What about the second argument from the free to play enthusiasts. Recently we have seen several mmos fail. Some failed big. Huge even. Is this a proof there’s no room for success? Does these recent failures (let’s not forget that most of these happened the last couple of years) show the hope is forever lost on the subscription mmos?

A comparison would be one of Apples worst product failures in history, The Macintosh Portable. Does the failure of the Macintosh Portable, and several other laptops of that era, prove the laptop market to be an impossible one to make a real impact on? Does the difficult laptop market at the time prove that laptops forevermore must be free and that the consumers arbitrarily will reject all other laptops? The answer is of course no.

I would say on the contrary. It is the failures of today that builds the expectations of things to come tomorrow.

If you are to make one general claim for all gamers, except of course that most of us love gaming, it seems to be the following; Gamers will pay a reasonable and often even a slightly higher price then expected, for a great gaming experience. Take a look at the hardware we buy, our equipment, the LAN’s we visit, the new gaming consoles we buy and all the games we already bought.

We will pay. That’s it.

If the game is good enough the communities of gamers will support the games until another, even greater experience comes along.

 

The real problem

The real problem for the subscription based mmos, and the only reasonable argument I see as to why these huge games fail – one by one, is that they’re not providing that experience. The recently released subscription mmos simply wasn’t good enough. They didn’t make the cut.

One by one, whether it was Swtor, Age of Conan or Lord of the Rings Online, they all had several flaws, or at least one flaw big enough to make too many players reject the notion of paying a subscription fee for these games. It’s not a coincidence that these games had a big hype around them before their release, Swtor for instance was called the WoW-Slayer, before its release. They didn’t deliver enough and players made the reasonable choice of not paying.

World of Warcraft was the first major mmo to capture a really big, international, reliable audience over many years. If you want to “kill WoW” then you have to provide something great, truly new and iconoclastic. No one really did that yet.

 

Why the subscription MMOs has to make it

There are reasons why the community of players should support the notion of subscription mmos. These reasons are important. Very important.

First of all it’s very hard to imagine how a free to play type mmo in the long run could keep up with a subscription game when it comes to updates, new releases and expansions. Both quantity and quality wise. The game developing company of a successful subscription mmo will simply have more resources to pour back into the game, at their disposal. Ask yourself what would bring more income; three million people buying a game or three million people buying a game and then on a continuing basis paying a 10$ a month subscription fee for that game?
It’s true that some free to play games has better content updates from time to time, then say for instance EVEOnline but generally they don’t. It’s very hard to take an isolated free to play game, like Age of Conan, and argue that it will have the same opportunity to release as great content as EVEOnline, given it where only up to those two games to be self-sustaining, without having the respective game publishing company taking money from other projects in order to create better content for the mmo.

The second reason to support the notion of subscription mmos is related to the first one. To put it simply; there is no better way for the communities to support game developers than to support the notion of subscribing to a game. If we gamers won’t take on a “will never subscribe attitude”, then we will support maximal growth of companies releasing great games. Companies that will release great games will grow more, and be able to release better games in the future, if we subscribe rather then expect to pay a one time fee.

The third reason is simply to keep micro transactions out of our games. Whether it’d be faster mounts, better items or weapons, these things should not be sold ingame for real currency. This is very important because it creates an economic class system within the mmo games. Some gamers can afford to pay, others can’t. Having to buy anything else then cosmetic upgrades (which you could argue against aswell) is the most efficient way of separating gamers by their real life income, and thus relating the gaming experience to your buying power as a consumer.
It’s also considered a boring element by many gamers and will keep a lot of folks away from these games. Subscriptions, combined with the gamers demanding the limiting of these kinds of ingame micro transactions, is the best way to keep this ghastly idea out of our games.

The fourth reason why the subscription MMO has to make it is because several payment models creates a more dynamic and versatile game market. And that’s a good thing. If there are more than just one basic expectation in regard to the payment model for a game, the game developers has a more dynamic sheet to work with when creating a game. The possibility for diversity will effect the market, the games and therefore the different projects. Diversity is often a good thing. This is the case here as well.

As Colin Johanson, said.

“It takes some serious balls to jump into the MMO industry and go after it.”

Johanson is right. It takes balls.

Therefore we gamers should be open-minded and support the game developing companies, by supporting both payment models.
Not condemning one to benefit the other.

Both free to play and subscription based mmos can coexist.

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April 12th

Editorials

New editorial to stir things up

Mmoopinion is working on a new editorial. We hope to inspire a great discussion with this long and well written piece. Furthermore it will be a discussion we think is desperately needed in todays gaming scene.

The topic will be subscription mmos vs the free to play model, the misconceptions and the reality.

We hope for you to welcome this discussion, as we do, and we will make it public in the days to come. We will announce via social media.

In the meantime join us on Facebook and Twitter below to keep yourself updated on the event.

Join us then to discuss one of the biggest issues in the mmo scene today.

Stay tuned.

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April 2nd

Events

News

StarCraft 15th Anniversary Special Mission

Today marks the 15th anniversary of the most popular rts-game in history, StarCraft. To celebrate this Blizzard has released an objective with a reward.

All one has to do is simply to play one game of StarCraft II, in any online mode, against other players.

The reward for doing this is a Feat of Strength achievement, and the classic character portraits bellow will also be unlocked. This offer extends to April 17th.

Blizzard writes in their announcement

“Following its release on March 31, 1998, StarCraft warped millions of us through time and space to the 25th century, where we explored the unruly Koprulu Sector for the first time. We built armies and brought ruin to countless enemy bases as we helped the terrans, protoss, and zerg wage war against each other. The release of StarCraft: Brood War just nine months later saw the Queen of Blades become one of the most iconic villains of all time, and the popularization of professional StarCraft competition in South Korea.

Fast-forward through twelve long, anticipation-filled years to 2010, when StarCraft II: Wings of Liberty was finally unleashed upon the world. We guided Jim Raynor’s actions as he fought valiantly against Arcturus Mengsk’s Dominion forces, and cheered on as professional competition, now fondly referred to as StarCraft II eSports, exploded in popularity on a truly global stage. Now, with less than one month behind us since the release ofStarCraft II: Heart of the Swarm, we’re faced with not just Kerrigan and her ferocious brood, but the realization that time really does fly when you’re having fun.

Mission Objective:

  • Play one game of StarCraft II in any online mode before 11:59 p.m. PDT on April 17.

Beginning March 31, play one Arcade, Custom, Ranked, Training, Unranked, or Versus A.I. game to earn theStarCraft 15-Year Anniversary Feat of Strength achievement. As soon as you’ve received the achievement, all three portraits will be permanently unlocked in your StarCraft II character profile.

We know what you’re thinking, and no, this isn’t an April Fool’s joke, though it is important to note that Campaign, Offline Custom Games, replays, and observing your friends’ games don’t count toward reward progress, so make sure to play in one of the previously listed online game modes. Furthermore, the Feat of Strength will be awarded only after your game is over, so if you leave that 4v4 ladder match early, the achievement will not be given to you until everyone else has left the game as well.”

As a bonus, Blizzard has released a new classic wallpaper to mark the anniversary.

 

Time to go play.

 

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March 31st

News

Art day: The art of Josh Atack

The talented concept artist Josh Atack recently shared some of his great work with the community. The art he shared came in the form of vintage-styled World of Warcraft posters.

Josh has his home at badgertracks.net.

 

Dalaran

 

Thunderbluff

 

Undercity

 

Have a link to some great game concept art you want to share?

Do so in the comments bellow!

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March 30th

Articles

News

Art day: Sound design

With the World of Warcraft patch 5.2: The Thunder King, among other things, came new creatures. One of the new world critters is the Patch is the Zandalari Battlesaur. Often one forgets what goes into creating new content. Not only programming and graphical design, but also sound design is an important part of new content material.

In a recent article, the Blizzard sound artist team shows some of the work they’ve done with the new patch. They also answer some questions in an interview.

Blizzard employee Nethaera points out that there are several layers in simultaneous relation, when designing sound for a creature in the game. These sounds are recorded, mixed and mastered individually and then put together.

In the case of the Zandalari Battlesaur, here are the individual sounds in the process.

A voice actor: We pulled in some of the best voice talent in the industry who excel in making creature sounds. In this case, we were able to bring in Jon Olson who also did the non-Voice Over sounds for sha and hozen mobs. What you hear is an edit of two takes that form a base layer of performance and sound that other layers and effects are crafted around.

Bear: Early last year, senior Sound Designer Chris Kowalski took his recording gear and his courage to Big Bear to gather some scary up-close source material from several of the wild animals at Predators in Action. The bear recordings from that visit were used to add size and embellish some of what the actor did.

Tiger: While at Predators in Action, Chris was also given the opportunity to record the tiger that was used in the movie Gladiator. This resulted in a ton of great material, including a lot of big cat chest rumbles and roars you may hear mixed into several creatures across Pandaria.

Final Sound: The final mix is comprised of all the layers above along with additional processing and mastering that make it fit within the world.

Here’s how the individual sounds for this particular creature correlate.

 

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March 30th

Articles

Art day: The WoW Tier 15 Armor Sets

World of Warcraft Patch 5.2 introduced new tier 15 armor sets.

These can be found inside the Throne of Thunder.

Here’s how they all look.

 

Death Knight – All-Consuming Maw

 

Druid – Haunted Forest

 

Hunter – Saurok Stalker

 

Mage – Chromatic Hydra

 

Monk – Fire-Charm

 

Paladin – Lightning Emperor

 

Priest – Exorcist

 

Rogue – Nine-Tail

 

Shaman – Witch Doctor

 

Warlock – Thousandfold Hells

 

Warrior – Last Mogu

 

So what do you think, how well are these sets designed compared to the previous ones? What is your all time favorite armor set?

 

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March 30th

Articles

Follow up
line

MMO Opinion

MMO Opinion is an opinion and news driven online magazine, regarding the world of the massive multiplayer online games.
Our wish is to create strong bonds with the game community and the developers and to serve as a channel through which news and editorials with high quality will be published and discussed.
Mmoopinion.com is not associated with any game developing company. We are an independent, free source of reporting. We want to be a platform of independent, free and informed opinion and news.