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Blizzard's World of Warcraft Beta Goes Live 264

Posted by simoniker
from the kappa-lambda-mu-nu dept.
craenor writes "Perhaps the most anticipated entry into the increasingly crowded PC MMORPG market, Blizzard's World of Warcraft, has just reached the live Beta stage, for those select players lucky enough to be picked. In a distinct change from the existing trend in Beta tests, they are not going to require NDAs for participating players, and everyone will have read access to the official Beta forums while testing takes place." The WoW site includes a basic game FAQ for beginners, and BitTorrent is now live as Blizzard's Beta distribution method of choice, as the mentioned earlier on Slashdot Games.
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Blizzard's World of Warcraft Beta Goes Live

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  • Oh No ! (Score:4, Funny)

    by rkoot (557181) on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:12AM (#8607656)
    My favorite Vaporware vanished in thin air !!
    r.
  • Rejoice! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:17AM (#8607676)
    Hooray! Another reason for me to camp in the basement of my parents house!
    • Hooray! Another reason for me to camp in the basement of my parents house!

      ...only when you run down there, you find a big group of players that have been camping there for two days for a special mob to spawn. Get in line.


      God, I am so glad I beat my Everquest addiction.

      • Re:Rejoice! (Score:5, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:58AM (#8607821)
        I think the "Progress Quest" parody of everquest is the best cure for game addiction I've seen.

        Now I'm addicted to Progress Quest. [progressquest.com] and play it often - but the neat part is that it takes all the time-consuming grunt-work out of EverQuest while keeping the fun.

      • Re:Rejoice! (Score:3, Informative)

        by BlackHawk-666 (560896)
        WOW has mechanisms to avoid this most annoying habit of lame-ass RPGers. They have instance areas where only you and your group will be present so there is no spawn camping outside your own group members.
  • Maybe... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dupper (470576) <adamlouis@gmail.com> on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:19AM (#8607680) Journal
    ...among geeks, is WoW the most anticipated MMORPG, but the most anticipated MMO among the general populace was Star Wars: Galaxies, and we all know how that turned out. But, then again, Lucasarts and Sony are pretty hit-or-miss, but Blizzard has a flawless record. Still, beware the overhyped crap.
    • Re:Maybe... (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:38AM (#8607750)
      I can tell you Star Wars galaxies is a lot better these days (vehicles, ridable mounts, player cities, a lot more content). Their start just wasn't perfect, but neither was any other MMORPG start. Let's hope Blizzard can get it right!
      • Re:Maybe... (Score:2, Interesting)

        I can tell you Star Wars galaxies is a lot better these days (vehicles, ridable mounts, player cities, a lot more content).

        Can I get in a ship and fly to a differant planet? Can I get in my X-Wing and blow up TIES? Can I flee in terror from the horror that is an Imperial Class Star Destroyer? Until both space combat and space travel is there it's not Star Wars.
    • Overhyped crap (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Nakanai_de (647766) on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:45AM (#8607768)
      ...Is precisely the reason why the best thing to do whenever a game like this is released is to wait a few months before buying it. In addition to the advantage of seeing how the hype meshes with reality, there's the added advantage of having the later version patches available. Let other people find the bugs for you. The prestige one gets as an early adopter just isn't worth the monetary price or less-refined level of quality that comes with it (IMO).
    • The most anticipated MMO amoung the general population was The Sims Online.
      SWG was up there but was still primarily a "geek" population.

      But my main reason of posting was to rant yet again against a terrible game by Blizzard Warcraft III. Here you have a game that game nothing new to the RTS domain and even worse did a very poor job of implementing all the previous ideas.
      • by gaijin99 (143693) on Friday March 19, 2004 @12:56PM (#8611155) Journal
        Well, I don't think I'd say WC3 was terrible, but it was fairly lackluster. The 3d aspect was incredibly poorly implemented, whoever decided to make a 3d game and not implement any real 3d controls was definately not thinking (for the "WC3 is the best game ever crowd": I know you can bring the camera closer to the ground. However, *real* 3d games include the amazing ability to rotate the camera to different angles, zoom, etc.)

        The "heros" aspect was newish, but I think it detracted from the game, really. If I want to play an RPG I'll play an RPG.

        What bothers me is that after all these years of RTS games they still don't have the improvements I was looking for after playing my first. Specifically, ways to avoid micromanagement. I want

        • User definable attack priority lists. I want to be able to tell each unit, or unit type, or group what priority to assign to which enemy types.
        • User alterable aggression levels.
        • The ability to set the level at which my damaged units will retreat and get healing.
        • User definable "response zones" so that I can establish a rapid reaction force and order it to aid any attacked unit inside its response zone, or to ignore attacks in certain areas.
        • The ability to order units with special attacks to bloody use the damn attacks so I don't have to fricking micromanage each damn unit's special attack. WC3 at least gave you the ability to set *some* specials to work automatically, but it wasn't very specific. I'd like to be able to order my special units to use X amount of their mana/energy/whatever for defense, Y for offense, and Z for support. Again, on either an individual basis, a unit type basis, or a group basis.
        None of this requires true AI, none of this is impossible for today's programmers. Some of what I want existed in the game Dark Reign (aggression levels, for example). Why has the actual mechanic of playing RTS games been left unimproved since day one? If I want a game where I have to be twitchy I'll play an FPS game. I don't want to micromanage anything. That isn't strategy.

        I figure that its much more important in a *strategy* game to set proper "standing orders" than it is to individually tell each and every grunt specifically what to attack. The commander should be thinking about the big picture, where to expand, what unit mix to use, the broad strokes of the attack, where to put forward staging areas, where to place support units (repair bays, etc), not focusing on individual units.

    • Re:Maybe... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by geekoid (135745) <dadinportland @ y a hoo.com> on Friday March 19, 2004 @05:41AM (#8607949) Homepage Journal
      There is no excuse for star wars galaxy.
      They way they did it sucked, At it showed absolutly NO knowledge of what people want to do in the star wars universe.
      The Jedi was a complete screw up.

      Even though I know Luke talks about 'womp rats', people do not want to go out and kill rats in the star wars universe, they pretty much want 1 of four things:
      1) Get Rebel Scum
      2) Get Emperial Scum
      3) Be a smuggler Scum
      4) Merchant.(really no my thing, but hey its popular)

      Now, the Jedi should have been a class you can start with. Base you power on deeds, and have a Good/Dark meter. when you get REALLY good, or Evil, you start to get the bizarro powers.

      • Re:Maybe... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by LarsWestergren (9033)
        Now, the Jedi should have been a class you can start with. Base you power on deeds, and have a Good/Dark meter. when you get REALLY good, or Evil, you start to get the bizarro powers.

        Well, you sum up one of the problems with MMORPGs - when everyone is a hero, no one is a hero.

        Also, if a newbie gets the most powerful class/weapon in the fictional universe first thing, what can they strive for later? I mean, if every newbie gets a lightblade and runs around whacking things with it, what differs that from g
        • Re:Maybe... (Score:3, Insightful)

          by NoseSocks (662467)
          A hero? A hero would indicate that an individual player means something. Most of the MMORPG'S ( I dare say all) does nothing to make you feel like a hero. You just kill things that will eventually come back. The only reward is an item to help you kill something bigger. Any resemblence to a plot in these games is truly laughable, and half the time it contradicts another plot in the game (while the other half makes no sense it all).

          But the problem at large is not usually the game designers alone: it'
      • Star Wars Combine (Score:4, Informative)

        by bonch (38532) on Friday March 19, 2004 @03:33PM (#8613259)
        If it would EVER get finished, the Star Wars Combine [swcombine.com] is what you've described.
    • FFXI (Final Fantasy X1) is a wonderful MMORPG. I picked up FFXI to pass the time until WoW came out. Now that I've been playing it for almost 6 months now, I gotta tell ya... I don't see myself switching unless WoW is absolutely amazing.

      As an old EQ player, I can't tell you what a breath of fresh air FFXI has been.

      The UI is a bit odd at first but once you get use to it, it's more than functional... it's actually nice. Just takes some adjustments.

      Here's more:

      http://www.playonline.com/ff11us/gameplay/
      htt p
    • Re:Maybe... (Score:2, Troll)

      by Sheepdot (211478)
      but Blizzard has a flawless record.

      I'm sorry, but those of us that liked Warcraft II, Diablo I, and Starcraft tend to hate Warcraft III. Diablo II was absolutely nothing new and was so damn buggy it was pathetic.

      Replay value on their single player games are horrible too. No PvP. The game is going to be a single player game with chat.
      • Diablo II was absolutely nothing new and was so damn buggy it was pathetic.

        Diablo II rocks, and continues to rock.

        Nothing new? More quests, characters, abilities, character variation, items, everything. Did you even play DII?
      • Re:Maybe... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by prator (71051)
        I definitely didn't enjoy Warcraft 3 as much as I wanted to, but I think that is only because of how good a game Starcraft was.

        -prator

  • It's interesting how they will turn to some open source alternatives for file distribution (Torrent), alleviating the strain from their network, but vehemently attack [eff.org] others who try to improve the gaming experience and lessen the strain from their network.

    • An all too common occurence. Youll find its the same with pretty much all companies. A company has no morals - its sole purpose for existence is to make money. The only difference is whether the employees of the company have ethics or not. For example, do you think IBM actively promote Linux because they believe in Free Software idealogy? No, its because they see big $ signs. In the case of Blizzard, they are out to make the $'s, except they are far less subtle about the way they treat Free Software.
      • Oh, please... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by WIAKywbfatw (307557) on Friday March 19, 2004 @09:07AM (#8608546) Journal
        Oh, please. Most games companies would quite happily sell their proverbial grandmother's kideneys or daughters into slavery rather than do the right thing. Blizzard, however, is an exception.

        Time after time, Blizzard has chosen to let a product launch date slide rather than release an incomplete or buggy game. And time after time, when those products have finally been finished they've turned out to be masterpieces.

        Can you name one bad game that Blizzard has made? Can you name another developer that has released three games that have free online multiplayer play that are as popular as Warcraft III, Diablo II and Starcraft? Heck, Starcraft is almost six years old now and Blizzard still supports it! There are even people playing the first Diablo online at Battle.net and how old is that game now?

        Blizzard objected to bnetd because it allowed people to play online without CD key verification (ie, without needing to buy a copy of the games concerned). When you consider that the initial purchase of those games (and the almost unnoticeable banner ads on Battle.net whilst you chat) are the only source of income that Blizzard has, it's hardly surprising that they weren't too keen on an online service that directly threatened their existance.

        If Blizzard has big $ signs permanently on its collective mind as you suggest then perhaps you can explain why it lets people play its games online for free rather than charging a single penny for the privelege?
        • I don't know, people will argue that id Software and Epic have made three great games in a row at least (and people still play Doom II online, though not in great enough numbers that anyone would care). But there still are QuakeWorld servers running around, and that game was released in 96, if memory serves me, and not only can you still get the demo CD or buy the game for $10 at most any store, it's now open source (the engine, not the graphics and sounds).

          So, I'd say that at least in this instance, id ha
          • Re:Oh, please... (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Rallion (711805)
            There's simply no way that Blizzard could let them do key checking without sacrificing security. And even if they did, new servers would be constantly springing up that just had is disabled! (Open source...yaaay...)

            People are quick to say that what they did was wrong, but they're never able to say exactly what would have been right.
    • Blizzard just gets a little 'governmental' for lack of a better term.

      They didnt like the free battle net software because
      1. they couldn't control the gaming experience/viruses downloaded through it, etc.
      2. they couldn't advertise for their games and other stuff inside of it.

      The downloading software portion does not directly bring in any money, so they might as well use torrent. Not to mention if you used blizzards torrent you know it first involves downloading their torrent program, which is another plac
    • It's all about control. The just want to control who plays their games. They don't care if you have their client software. They even want you to get it somewhere else but not from their servers to save them bandwidth.

      But on the other hand they want you to only be able to play on their servers with their serial number so they know who you are, when you play, what you do (remember Warcraft III needs local admin rights on windows, so it could theoretically read your whole harddisk and registry), and most impo
    • If you think BNet.d was about "lessening strain from their network" or "improving the gaming experience" you're dead wrong. It was about being able to play a game you didn't pay for. Blizzard servers are not strained, they work just fine. The only possible reason for playing on Bnet.d was to play with illegally-obtained software.

      Christ, you probably also think that virus writers are writing them because they want to check the security of Windows.

      • by pwarf (610390) <(pwarf) (at) (yahoo.com)> on Friday March 19, 2004 @12:06PM (#8610464)
        While I never played on Bnet.d, I have to disagree with you about there being no other reason to play on it. Blizzard servers may not be strained now, but when I was playing Diablo II lag was sometimes a real problem, especially for playing hard-core (once you're dead, your character is dead).

        As previously mentioned, there are plenty of reasons other than not owning the game to want to play on non-Blizzard servers. A chance for reduced lag is one. Having different standards of acceptable behavior is another. Also, having a smaller pool of players makes meeting people online more likely. Moreover, if this is hosted for a local ISP, you are more likely to meet people in your area.

        The comparison of BNet.d writers/users with virus writers is unfounded; a better comparison would be with the writers/users of no-CD hacks or software. Some people may use them for pirating, but many others use them for convenience. Given current hard drive sizes, there is no reason to require a CD or even DVD to be in the drive to play a game or use software. It adds only slightly to the security against pirating, and removing it is a convenience to the end user. (Requiring the CD be in the drive, but providing no copy protection on the CD, which I've often seen, is silly; real pirates will just copy the CD and the rest of your users will be inconvenienced.)

        Another major thing you've missed about "improving the game experience" is that Blizzard was changing the balancing with each patch, which made a few of my friend's characters impotent (excessive concentration in skills that were nerfed with a patch). I don't know whether each patch was reverse engineered or not, but I assume that each server running Bnet.d had the choice of whether to implement a new patch.

        Also, from the ISP's point of view, every player they could get on local Bnet.d servers was less external bandwidth they had to pay for. I don't think Diablo II was that bandwidth intensive, but it probably didn't hurt.
  • Shameless (Score:4, Informative)

    by Bill_Royle (639563) on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:25AM (#8607702)
    And already, some idiot is auctioning off his beta test account...

    Ebay auction [ebay.com]
  • by Lord_Dweomer (648696) on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:28AM (#8607717) Homepage
    Seriously. The trade skill system looks like they ripped it off of UO (which I actually love and look forward to, but still not unique), and unless combat and magic are somehow revolutionary, I'd really like someone to explain why I should get this game above another MMORPG.

    • by Quobobo (709437) on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:45AM (#8607767)
      I'll be buying it based on Blizzard's track record with excellent games and their excellent support for the Mac. That's probably not the answer you're looking for, but I have yet to be disappointed by a Blizzard title.
      • Exactly! I'm a Mac user, I'd love to play a MMORPG, and I'm sure not going to go out and buy a damn Windows computer just for playing a video game. WoW is what I've been waiting for. Also, it doesn't hurt that
        1. It's put out by Blizzard, who has made some of my very favorite games of all time
        2. Warcraft III and the expansion had great story lines with interesting twists. Be nice to see what they come up with for a MMORPG
        3. They've included some new ideas that will hopefully fix a lot of the problems from oth
    • by Disevidence (576586) on Friday March 19, 2004 @05:15AM (#8607863) Homepage Journal
      Because its in a well established universe with a good backdrop, made by a respected games company, and said company normally produces games that are entertaining and polished.

      It doesn't sound revolutionary, but rather it takes most of the good aspects of other MMORPG's, and puts into neatly into one package.

      So far of course. Beta testing will let the community see.

      Blizzard haven't made a misstep yet, in my humble opinion.
    • All the modern games are simple evolutions of their progenitors. The reason to choose this version of an RPG over others is the quality of the polish that Blizzard will provide to the genre. They always release cracking good software and I see no reason to believe this game will be any different.
    • What has Blizzard ever produced that was revolutionary? Their business is taking existing ideas and perfecting them.
    • I'd say the best reason to buy it is that it was developed and alpha tested with one goal: to create a game that was constantly fun. Many games, especially MMORPGs, have lots of aspects that are just tedious, but they're done everything they can to make sure you don't have that problem in WoW.

      They don't use D&D style or really anything like it, a Paladin is not the same as in aother game, neither are dwarves or elves. It's really an incredibly unique gameworld. That's nice too, I think, to play a game
  • by Zakabog (603757) <john@nosPAm.jmaug.com> on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:38AM (#8607748)
    I remember when that first came out it ran like crap over bnet and they weren't expecting it to be as hard on their servers. Are they gonna test this with like 10,000 people and open it up to over 1,000,000 when it's finally released and realized hey this wasn't such a good idea we should have done more testing?

    • I remember when that first came out it ran like crap over bnet and they weren't expecting it to be as hard on their servers. Are they gonna test this with like 10,000 people and open it up to over 1,000,000 when it's finally released and realized hey this wasn't such a good idea we should have done more testing?


      Yeah. What numbers do you suggest? In reality, online mmorpgs are in a constant beta phase (content wise) anyway, and both the client and server systems are constantly tweaked and enhanced duri
    • by Jugalator (259273) on Friday March 19, 2004 @05:37AM (#8607938) Journal
      Yes, this is usually how it's done. It would be unmanagable with a million beta testers.

      Blizzard themselves admitted this problem though and said it was because they had anticipated more players to go single player first. (remember it was released when analog modems were still most common) Instead, an overwhelming amount of players went online.

      They won't have this problem this time around, since they know everyone will play online from the start and should be able to dimension the server capacity easier.
  • by OgreFade (627705) on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:56AM (#8607805)
    The gryphon riding looks really cool. Another thing that seems rather inventive is the death system, where upon your death you become a ghost and wander/go resurrect yourself. That seems interesting to me, and it'll be fun to see mountain giants from UNDER their nose, rather than from DOWN their nose. It seems to look good, I'll have to get the game before I can tell any more really.
    • by flewp (458359) on Friday March 19, 2004 @05:19AM (#8607879)
      Another thing that seems rather inventive is the death system, where upon your death you become a ghost and wander/go resurrect yourself.

      I haven't seen the videos yet, but the way you describe it doesn't seem that inventive. In Ultima Online, when you die, you become a ghost and have to wonder around and look for a healer to bring you back to life. Once brought back to life, you can go back to your corpse and grab your stuff, assuming someone else hasn't looted it.

      Or at least that's the way it was when I played a few years ago.
      • by andy55 (743992) * on Friday March 19, 2004 @06:45AM (#8608111) Homepage
        Once brought back to life, you can go back to your corpse and grab your stuff, assuming someone else hasn't looted it.

        I was a "hardcore" mode Diablo II addict (in HC mode, you only get one life to live and when you die, that's it--you lose everytihng and you're level one again). I'd go for days w/ minimal food and rest--it was insane. Anyway, that's beside the point--I never had more fun with a game. It was the first time a modern game went beyond a FPS shooter game (ie, instant action), while combining a persistent character, while causing you to exhibit real survival-like behavior. When I played for those hours--and days straight--I was having *tons* of fun and laughs constantly and consistently...

        So many of these games these days have you sit there for hours w/o even raising your heartbeat--I don't understand how people let themselves play them! In Diablo II hardcore, I'd stand up after a few hours of play and feel like I just had a two hour-long workout (and I'm shape, before you jump on that one).

        Looking back, there wasn't a *single* hour or loss of a character where I didn't have hoots of fun. What other games (and/or game formats) can boast that? Sure, some of the deaths were painful and sad at the equipment I lost, but that's what real battle and gaming is--it goes beyond fun and enters the realm of glory.

        Glory isn't something that you can save to file, accumulate from killing a high xp monster a hundred times using hours of free time, or get from nice equipment. It's when you and a couple others that you've been fighting alongside with rush in a room where the outcome is unknown and is also for keeps--you get one and only one chance. And when you fought off the odds, the glory was yours. And when you didn't, and fought to the end, the glory was still yours. I bowed down--and fell in love--with a game that could let your experience that.
        • I was a hardcore mode Diablo addict too. There is a lot to be said for making death a major inconvenience in games. I find that in a lot of games now I reach the "what is the point of this game?" phase a lot more quickly now after playing D2 Hardcore.

          If you can just run in and hack away without regard to strategy because you know death is no big deal, where's the fun? If everyone is running around with ultimate items because it's impossible to permanently lose your gear, where's the game economy?

          D2 Har
          • That's great...for some players. For the vast majority of the general public who just wants to drop in for a few hours at a time, kill some stuff, get some loot, and get back to work, that doesn't fly. Especially not when you're paying $13.95/month for the privelege. Now, if they had both a softcore and a hardcore WoW server...I could see myself getting into that...

            Again, though, lag death or something would completely piss me off. Spending months building up a character only to die because of packet l
        • Temple of Elemental Evil also incorporated a D2-like hardcore mode called "Ironman". It's the only way I could play it, for all of the reasons you mentioned.

          There is also a small segment of the MMO community that wants a game with similar rules. The rest of the MMO players seem to view 'permadeath' as disgusting and unfun. I guess they want no real challenge in their march to 1000th level and the Vorpal Sword of Bunny Killing.

          Trials of Ascension, Atriarch, Realms of Torment, Frontier 1859 and a few more M
  • by CGP314 (672613) <CGP@ColinGregory ... t ['Pal' in gap]> on Friday March 19, 2004 @04:58AM (#8607817) Homepage
    This is bad, bad news. Now the game is one day closer to being finished which means it's one day closer to when I can buy it, which means it's one day closer to the day I won't be able to leave my computer ever again.

    Blizzard game are like the purest of drugs. I got hooked on WarCraft I by a free demo in the store (the first one is always free) and I've been a junkie ever since.

    My lowest moment ever was turning down sex with my girlfriend the first week that Warcraft III came out because I didn't want to step away from the game. I fear it will be even worse with World of Warcraft. : (

    -Colin [colingregorypalmer.net]
    • Can't speak for WoW, but I've found that playing a necromancer in D2 opens up more than enough free time in the game for a quickie. You could actually get some *AND* make lunch during some parts of Hell, with enough enemies on the screen.

      --trb
  • by Rogerborg (306625) on Friday March 19, 2004 @05:27AM (#8607905) Homepage

    Over them suing bnetd?

    Well, I guess posting all those snippy comments on Slashdot really showed them who was boss. So now it's back to the usual fawning at their feet, is it?

    • Well.. (Score:2, Insightful)

      by eddy (18759)

      I can't speak for everyone else (amazing that), but I'm still "boycotting". This particular game wasn't anything I'd go for anyhow, but..

    • by Tridus (79566) on Friday March 19, 2004 @08:32AM (#8608442) Homepage
      I for one was never at war with them, they create awesome games.

      People need to stop thinking of Slashdot as one big collective with the same thoughts and goals. Its a website full of unique people, they think differently.

      Some of them are upset over bnetd, others couldn't care less.
  • by IanDanforth (753892) on Friday March 19, 2004 @05:27AM (#8607909)
    Since I was playing in Alpha I can give everyone a bit of insight as to what WoW is like. First off Blizzard has done a simply wonderful job. The game runs smoothly and if the server crashes, which it may occasionally, its back up in no time. The game play stretches from the familiar, where it has been perfected, to the brand new, to the silly (fishing). The graphics are wonderful and go more for style than realism, which is appropriate to Warcraft. The feedback mechanisms are streamlined, the download process is excellent (if long). The game holds you by the hand a bit much, but other than that I can't really complain. There will be a simply massive amount of info coming out in the next few days from Alpha testers freed of NDA's. So check out the shots and descriptions and see for yourself. Its a great game. Period. -Ian
    • Thanks for sharing the information :)

      But what I'm really interested in, is to know how the leveling system works.
      The no.1 reason why I get frustrated by most MMORPG's is the extremely tedious system of leveling. (which usually consists of killing the same type of creature for days on end)

      Take Lineage2 for example.
      It's a very pretty game, with lots of potential (great engine)
      But I stopped playing once I spent 2 nights getting my character up above lvl5 (by killing the same types of creatures over and over,
      • by rale, the (659351) on Friday March 19, 2004 @08:06AM (#8608361)
        I was also in the alpha, so I can give you a bit more info. The best part about wow to me, is the quest system. Its very nicely done, and you get a large amount of experience (along with items and/or cash) for completing most quests. The quests vary from killing a number of a specific monster, to exploring an area, and to collecting a number of specific drops. There are also some more interesting quests, such as protecting an npc while he walks from one place to another and gets ambushed by some bad guys, or others where you have a limited time (complete with a timer on screen) to kill a few things. Leveling ends up revolving around completing quests, and you can pretty much always have a goal for various quests, instead of just killing stuff over and over.

        I've played a number of mmorpg (way too much eq, played ao some, daoc, ffxi), and wow is definately the game to look forward to. If the quality of content I've seen extends all the way to the higher levels, it should be a great game.
        • by Teh Suq (655848)

          The quests vary from killing a number of a specific monster, to exploring an area, and to collecting a number of specific drops. There are also some more interesting quests, such as protecting an npc while he walks from one place to another and gets ambushed by some bad guys, or others where you have a limited time (complete with a timer on screen) to kill a few things.

          Is that it? They can't be more creative than that? You just described the quest system in every MMORPG that exists for the most part. Hec

  • by Jugalator (259273) on Friday March 19, 2004 @05:43AM (#8607952) Journal
    Anyone noticed Guild Wars [guildwars.com]?

    Developed by ex-Blizzard employees, and in the same spirit as Battle.net in terms of a free multiplayer service. New extra features can be bought (this is how the MMOG is financed), but they won't be necessary to play with those who have them.

    It has pretty graphics [guildwars.com] too. :-) The gallery is all unretouched graphics with interesting lightning effects making some people think they were post-processed.

    • Sorry -- I meant to tell how this relates to this WoW news. Well, I personally like non-pay to play games, and these guys should stand for similar polish as Blizzard is known for. It has several things in common with Diablo II as well, so it could finally become the D2 killer I've been waiting for. Scheduled for release Q3 this year.
    • This image [guildwars.com] brings up an interesting subject.

      Why the hell are most hand held weapons (swords, clubs, etc.) used by characters in 3D fantasy games as big as themselves? Do game developers have any idea how heavy a sword that big would be?

      Ahh, ok, it's a magical sword. That explains it. Too bad the other swords marked as "not magical" are as big and carried the same way.
  • by Daniel Vallstrom (649271) on Friday March 19, 2004 @06:37AM (#8608087)
    Here is a positive review [graffe.com] from an alpha tester.
  • Linux? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by NamShubCMX (595740) on Friday March 19, 2004 @08:39AM (#8608465)
    Ok I'm sreiously being serious here...

    Is a Linux port planned? I don't care wether it's Transgaming working to make it a "5" on WineX or a company doing the port or Blizzard themselves providing a Linux client, but it is one of the first game I feel like I'm gonna miss :(

    • From the FAQ:

      For what platforms will the game be available?
      The game will be available on PCs and the Macs. We are developing both versions simultaneously and will be shipping them at the same time, as with our other recent games.

  • I've been Alpha testing this game for four months, now that the beta is out my NDA is lifted.

    I suppose I should say something meaningful now, but all I can think to really say is that if you like fantasy RPGs, and questing, it's definitely worth giving it a try.

    I've been having a lot of fun, and after four months, I'm still excited about playing.
  • Two words (Score:2, Funny)

    by g0dfath3r (538412)
    Zug Zug
  • The term "Lucky Bastards" comes to mind :-)
  • No PVP (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Sheepdot (211478) on Friday March 19, 2004 @11:14AM (#8609833) Journal
    They aren't going to even have a PVP server?

    How exactly do they expect to get the DAOC players, the AC Darktide players, the original UO PVPers, etc., who feel that it is more important to have something to do other than play a stupid single player game with IRC?
  • by pcx (72024) on Friday March 19, 2004 @12:35PM (#8610851)
    Here's a link to an alpha tester's report. It's a VERY long read but it's also a really, really GREAT read. If you're interested at all in what WoW is and isn't as it starts beta, this is must read material.

    http://www.graffe.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1552 6 [graffe.com]

The flow chart is a most thoroughly oversold piece of program documentation. -- Frederick Brooks, "The Mythical Man Month"

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