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Saturday, September 3, 2011

Another Return to World of Warcraft

After about 12 hours worth of patches, I finally returned to the world of Azeroth yesterday. The first thing I did was logged in as my level 77 Undead Priest. It was rough to be away for so long because everything about the character felt odd and misplaced. The utter sense of loss was quadrupled when the world just seemed so empty. It just so happened that I logged out at The Barrens during my previous short visit and of course the area was just, uh, completely barren. Then, I used the Hearthstone back to Dalaran and well, what used to be the central hub of activities is now a ghost town. I am really not sure where everyone went but instead of taking on that grand adventure of self-rediscovery, I decided to just create a new character at another server because a friend of mine is playing there. I figured that it would be a great way to recall the nuances of the game again while experiencing the new changes in WoW.

I'm back! Wait, where's everyone?

Since my friend plays an Alliance - oh no! - I decided to go with a Draenei Mage. A female Draenei Mage of course since the male character model for this race looks quite horrendous. I do miss my Goblin Shammy but perhaps it's a good thing to play the Alliance at this point in time to get a fresh perspective of the game because I have so many Horde characters already. Well, historically, the first character I have ever made was a Human Warlock so I'm returning to my roots or something goofy like that. I have never rolled a mage before so she seems to be pretty fresh and fun thus far.

Fly my sweet mage... Fly!

After my recent flirtation with Rift, I was extremely worried that WoW was going to look really ancient but I was in for a surprise to find out that it is still quite pretty. I don't remember the game looking this sharp - well, actually, that goblin starting island did look rather incredible - with so many vegetation cluttering the area and the ground textures looking really busy and detailed. Overall, the game still looks good even though it is not as technologically advanced as most of its competitors. The DIrectX 11 implementation apparently only affects the background performance of the game because all of the new graphical options can be turned on using the DirectX 9 engine. So it looks like Rift's visuals no longer have the edge over WoW if I were to make a consideration between which one of them I would subscribe to. Currently, I am at level 10 and I since the battlegrounds are now open to level 10 and up, I already played a round of Arathi Basin this morning and it was as fun as I remembered it to be though getting repeatedly killed by a level 10 warlock in 2 seconds was just ridiculously annoying. Things are definitely looking up for WoW at the moment but we will see how things progress from here on out. I will probably be spending most of my time playing my new character during the remainder of this free trial period.

It's strange to be on this side of the battlefield...

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