Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Mists of Pandaria : New WoW Feature Pet Battles

WoW Mists of Pandaria Pet Battles
Blizzard has taken notice over the successful years of the World of Warcraft game that players who are bored or finished with current content tend to enjoy mini games. Some consider trolling Trade Chat to be their favorite mini game, but for normal players Blizzard implements events, quests, and features to keep players interested in their free time. Mists of Pandaria will bring one of the biggest, and likely to be the most played, mini game yet; Pet Battles!

The reason World of Warcraft has been so successful is because Blizzard created a great quality game based on a Warcraft franchise that already had a lot of interest. Then, when other competing MMOs were released, Blizzard did not disrespect their competition. They simply researched the new features that worked in those games and adopted them into WoW. Some games that have always held massive popularity and Pokemon is one of those. Blizzard has noticed that some gamers really enjoy the turn based team battle style like Final Fantasy. They also knew that they basically already had a Pokemon collecting system in place in WoW with companion pets. So they made the obvious decision to offer another form of entertainment with World of Warcraft that is not required for those who choose not to take part in it.

Pet Battles are not required for character advancement. Playing the Pet Battle mini game will only help a player advance in this mini game. So if you enjoy this style of gameplay more than watching what intelligence or lack thereof will manifest in Trade Chat next, then you should be excited that Mists of Pandaria will offer this new feature! If you feel that this mini game is a contributing factor to the destruction of WoW, then you're free to pass on Pet Battle action and focus on the parts of WoW that you enjoy instead.

Pet Battles will take advantage of your companion pets. Some new cool features that Pet Battles will bring are:
-Name your companion pets
-Level up your companion pets
-Customize your companion pets with abilities
-Find and equip collar items to customize pet stats
-Acquire new companions by defeating them in combat

Pet Battles will be a simple 3v3 turn based combat system. Different pets will have different roles. Although completely different, WoW Pet Battles will bring new theorycrafting strategy for combinations just like Arena PvP. Pet Battles will have PvE aspects. Players will gain abilities, new pets, items, and more by competing in Pet Battles with WoW NPCs. The Pet Battle system will also be highly PvP including a queue system much like the Arena.

Although this is highly speculative and a bit of a side track from Pet Battle features, this new WoW mini game is certain to make some players a lot of WoW gold. Watch your favorite WoW gold guide to see what new strategies exist for making gold hand over fist with WoW companion pets now that they have much more function.

Pet Battles may be one of the most mocked Mists of Pandaria features, but they will only serve to further entertain WoW players in 5.0 and beyond. The "WoWkemon" mini game will be implemented with the quality and polish Blizzard is known for, and it will most likely be a hit with most of the WoW community. For those who are extremely upset with this new WoW MoP feature; Like earlier mentioned, your characters will not fall behind in the game if you choose not to partake in the Pet Battle adventure.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Mists of Pandaria : New Class Monk

WoW Monk Class
Along with Pandaren as the new playable Race, the WoW Monk class seems like the obvious choice for a new playable Class. That's right, Mists of Pandaria will be the first World of Warcraft Expansion to introduce both a new race and class at the same time. Blizzard promises that the Monk will be a completely new style of play. The new class can perform all three major roles: Tank, Healer and DPS.

Pandaren martial arts masters will share their knowledge with the new Alliance and Horde races they encounter in Mists of Pandaria. So the Monk class will be playable by all of the following races:
Draenei | Dwarf | Gnome | Human | Night Elf | Pandaren | Blood Elf | Orc | Tauren | Troll | Undead

Monks will use leather armor with a stat focus of Intellect for Healing and Agility for Tanking or DPS. These stats were selected so that current itemization will fit well with leveling Monks without the necessity of many new lower level items. Monks will be able to use one-hand melee weapons as well as polearms and staves. The resource of the Monk class will be Light and Dark Forces as well as Mana for healing or Chi energy for melee attacks.

WoW Monk Animation
Unlike any other class in World of Warcraft, the Monk class will have unique animations that accompany it's martial arts fighting style. The style, as WoW MoP devs put it, would be Street-Fighter like. That is because Monks do not have an auto attack ability. Players must use the Jab ability to charge their resources. Although this change is not final, many who tried the demo at BlizzCon seemed to enjoy the new style.

The Brewmaster will be the Monk Tank Spec which will focus on martial arts and evasive maneuvers. The Mistweaver will be the Monk Healer Spec which will bring a very unique style of healing to the game. The healing Monk will not cast a heal on players directly, but instead will drop statues that will heal in proximity as the monk attacks the adversary. The Windwalker will be the Monk DPS spec which will focus on melee abilities with a very martial arts feel only using a weapon for finishing moves.

The Monk has probably been the most requested new class for WoW, and it looks like MoP devs won't disappoint the World of Warcraft community with this new class. It will be unique and extremely fun with new and exciting gameplay for each role.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Mists of Pandaria : New Race Pandaren

WoW Pandaren Character Creation
Pandaren will be the new playable race in the World of Warcraft Expansion Mists of Pandaria. The Pandaren have been around since before the Sundering. Long ago, the Pandaren were oppressed by the Mogu, a race of giants who also live in Pandaria. However, they have since regained their freedom from the Mogu, and continue to live peacefully on the continent of Pandaria.

To protect his people from the evils of Azeroth, a Pandaren emperor shrouded the lands in a mist disconnecting Pandaria from the rest of the known world. Some brave and curious Pandaren decided to explore beyond the mist. These adventurous Pandaren settled on the back of a giant sea turtle and set off exploring. The Pandaren who left Pandaria encounter Alliance and Horde members in heated battle on the seas. These Pandaren will become the new playable race.

The Pandaren will level from 1-10 on the Wandering Isle (on the shell of the sea turtle). Upon finishing the starting zone, Pandaren players must choose which faction, Alliance or Horde, that their new character will support. This is how the new race is available to both factions. Choose carefully, the choice of faction is permanent.

Pandaren racial abilities include:
Bouncy: You take 50% less falling damage.
Epicurean: Increases the stat benefits from food by 100%.
Gourmand: Cooking skill increased by 15.
Inner Peace: Your rested experience bonus lasts twice as long.
Quaking Palm: You touch a secret pressure point on an enemy target, putting it to sleep for 3 seconds.

Pandaren characters can play the following classes:
Hunter | Mage | Monk | Priest | Rogue | Shaman | Warrior

Pandaren Model
Pandaren character models have much more detail and incredible animation. The quality of the Pandaren model has inspired a request from the WoW community that all race models be updated to match their quality. Blizzard devs agree that the Pandaren characters look awesome. Although the female Pandaren model was not available at the BlizzCon 2011 Mists of Pandaria demo, Blizzard has assured that they will look just as amazing as the male model.

Despite some of the hate we've been hearing about the cuddly nature of pandas ruining the spirit of World of Warcraft, Blizzard has stated that Pandaren, by a large margin, were the most requested new feature to be included into the WoW game. According to current Mists of Pandaria rumors, players will have additional character slots on each realm. So the Pandaren Monk will likely be one of the most played combinations when Mists of Pandaria is released. Speaking of WoW MoP rumors, the Mists of Pandaria release date is currently speculated to be May of 2012. Get ready for a summer of fun!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Mists of Pandaria : New Continent Pandaria

With Mists of Pandaria, two new zones will be added to World of Warcraft. The first is only a single starting zone for Pandaren characters. Although it's more than just a starting zone as you will discover later. The other new zone is what you would expect. A continent with 5 separate and different zones where players will level from 85-90.

The Wandering Isle is the starting zone for Pandaren characters. These Pandaren are completely disconnected from the Pandaren who live in Pandaria. They settled on the back of a giant sea turtle, and left Pandaria behind to explore the world beyond the Mists. The Wandering Isle is actually on the shell of a sea turtle who swims throughout the South Seas.
Mists of Pandaria Pandaren Starting Zone
It is upon the back of this wandering sea turtle that players will level up their new Pandaren characters. The quests on the Wandering Isle will direct these Pandaren through a journey that will eventually lead to them making a decision of which faction (Alliance or Horde) they will choose to support at level 10.

Pandaria is the new high-level zone. It will be a single continent like Northrend. And like Northrend, it will have multiple large zones connected rather than spread out in the world as the new zones of Cataclysm were.
MoP developers demonstrated at BlizzCon that Pandaria would be huge; So big that each zone will almost seem to be a continent in itself. The 5 zones that WoW players will experience as they level up to 90 are The Valley of the Four Winds, The Jade Forest, Townlong Steppes, Vale of Eternal Blossoms, and Kun-Lai Summit. Each will be unique and the entire continent will follow an Asian theme.

Pandaria will have a plethora of new wildlife, humanoids as well as vegetation. The Pandaren race who occupy Pandaria share the appearance of the played race. However, they will have a completely different outlook with a focus on peace and tranquility. One interesting point about Pandaria is that players will not be able to fly there until they reach level 90. This is just like Burning Crusade. Even in Wrath of the Lich King, players could fly in Northrend a couple levels before 80. I preferred skipping trash as I grinded through quests to reach level 85 in Cataclysm. However, it seems the WoW devs prefer that players experience the story along with the new land.

It seems that Pandaria as a single continent was well received by the WoW community. The spread out zones of Cataclysm were a nice change up, but many players seem to prefer the new continent divided into unique-looking zones like TBC and WotLK brought. So Blizzard is offering the majority what they want in Mists of Pandaria; a huge new continent with rich culture, beautiful scenery, and new adventures that is completely disconnected from the know lands of Azeroth.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Mists of Pandaria : An Expansion Based On April Fools?

Mists of Pandaria Pandaren
Mists of Pandaria has been ridiculed even since speculation that it might be the next WoW expansion surfaced. Don't be misguided by this post. There is plenty of support for the upcoming expansion in Pandaria. It's just that the haters seem to express their opinions more openly.

One of the main issues that has caused unrest in the WoW community is that Pandaren were first included in the lore of Warcraft during an April Fools joke. The support for Pandaren as a realistic addition to the Warcraft universe was very surprising to Blizzard. So they began to test the water adding Pandaren into the Warcraft lore. It seemed as if there was little objection to the new race.

In fact, the support for Pandaren was so strong in Warcraft lore that Blizzard had even strongly considered adding them in the 2nd WoW expansion, The Burning Crusade. Obviously they decided not to add them at that point. According to Blizzard, they are happy that they decided not to add Pandaren to WoW in the Burning Crusade. Not because they are weary of the response that Mists of Pandaria has received, but because they believe now is the perfect time to reintroduce Pandaria to the known world of Azeroth.

That's right, the insults and ridicule of the haters haven't even phased the WoW developers. Despite the community seemingly being divided in half regarding the support of Mists of Pandaria, Blizzard knows that MoP will be a great addition to the World of Warcraft game. They are confident and excited about the upcoming features that Mists of Pandaria will bring, and even though adding a new class to the game is extremely difficult, the WoW devs can't wait to reveal the polished Monk class to WoW players.

So even if you were convinced by the naysayers that WoW MoP will lead to the steady decline of popularity of World of Warcraft, remember this. The WoW developers have confronted uneasy decisions and plenty of scrutiny throughout the development of the game. For seven years, they've still been able to sustain a huge community in a single mmorpg. They know what they're doing, they study what works and they listen to suggestions. If you're indifferent about Mists of Pandaria, or even if you're doubting it's quality, then understand that the haters have received the announcement and a little info only. The WoW devs who know that Mists of Pandaria is going to be awesome have seen and discussed much more info about what's coming in this new expansion.