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WRUP: Pandaren Madness Minute

Every week, just at the start of the weekend, we catch up with the WoW Insider staff and ask them, "What are you playing this week?" -- otherwise known as WRUP. Join us to see what we're up to in and out of game, and catch us in the comments to let us know what you're playing, too!

In case you haven't heard already, just this past week, Blizzard registered a trademark for Mists of Pandaria. And what, you may ask, is Mists of Pandaria?

... what? Don't look at me. I don't know.

Could Mists of Pandaria be the next expansion for World of Warcraft? There's plenty of evidence that this is the case -- Blizzard filed the same kind of trademark for Cataclysm shortly before its official announcement. Thing is, though, Mists of Pandaria could be so many things other than an expansion, too:
  • A digital expansion for the WoW Trading Card Game
  • Blizzard's WoW-related foray into mobile gaming
  • An exciting new Plug-In scent from Glade
Ultimately, though, your guess is as good as ours. What exactly are we guessing? Well, funny you should mention it -- just this week, I asked our columnists a very simple question to interpret as they saw fit: "... pandaren?"

Adam Holisky (@adamholisky) (gplus.to/adamholisky) I've picked up Fallout: New Vegas again recently, and I think I'm going to spend a fair amount of time running around in that. Although I also need to run my heroics for the week, and I'll probably finish that up at night while drinking a nice scotch. It's really the best way to run a heroic.
As far as pandas go, well, I'm learning what to feed mine. Also looking forward to all the panda cosplay at BlizzCon this year. (I kid ...)

Allison Robert (@AllisonRobert) I'll be running back and forth to the hospital for my grandfather and then prepping/cooking for a bridal shower on Sunday, so I doubt I'll have a ton of extra time for much of anything else this weekend. Re: pandaren, I'm curious to see what they'd be like in game, but I always thought of them as Samwise's little joke thing. It'd be weird to see them playable. Oh, and in related news, hospitals with free wifi = win.

Basil Berntsen (@outdps) This weekend, I'll be playing WoW. I have crafting to catch up on and millions of gold to waste on frivolous things. My stance on pandas is that I play this game for the mechanics and the people, not the inconsistent patchwork of disparate storylines it's turned into.

Daniel Whitcomb (@danielwhitcomb) (gplus.to/danielwhitcomb) Right now, I just sort of want to catch up on sleep. We'll see how that goes, though. At the least I'll be checking the Molten Front bombing run every day to see if Hatespark is up so I can finally finish Death From Above. As far as pandas go, I don't want them. They're joke characters, and there's so much more compelling stuff to focus on. Then again, we've had to deal with offensive African stereotypes in game a lot lately -- maybe offensive Asian stereotypes will be a nice change of pace!

Elizabeth Wachowski (@leeatwaterlives) I'll be leveling my druid and my death knight, and probably playing some old FF Tactics on my 3DS --- I feel bad for neglecting that device, but iOS gaming is so much cheaper and easier. Pandaren: Sure, why not?

Fox Van Allen (@foxvanallen) (gplus.to/foxvanallen) Well, you all went and did it. After asking for iOS game recommendations on Twitter, you all said "Tiny Tower." And now I'm stuck checking my phone every six minutes, making sure my comedy club is fully stocked with LOLs.

For those curious, I also downloaded Cut the Rope and Groove Coaster, though I really haven't had much time to play either. On account of dealing with all these VIPs who want to buy out my entire stock of ROFLs. You understand.

Pandaren: I honestly don't understand why people are falling off their chairs in anger or smugness over panda-men possibly being in WoW. Seriously. We have wolf-men, cat-men, cow-men, snake-men, dragon-men, and a super-intelligent talking raptor that flies off into outer space. But this is too much? An entire land of untapped potential would be less interesting than going into the Emerald Dream (yawn) to deal with night elf druid garbage again? Gotcha.

Bring on the motherf**king pandas.

Joe Perez (@Lodurzj) More League of Legends this weekend. Finally figuring out how to set up and assassinate as Wukong. Also leveling my new DK alt on Ner'zhul, seeing how far I can get her in levels. Also answering the rest of the reader emails I haven't been able to get to.
As far as pandaren go, well, I have nothing but respect for an in-game race that might be able to actually out-drink me.

Kelly Aarons (@Cadistra) This weekend will be fireworks, working on achievements in WoW, and Catherine. Pandas? Not only could it not be the next expansion -- I mean, they're probably about halfway done on the next one when Cataclysm was announced -- but I honestly think Blizzard is just screwing with us. If they're not, then I agree with Matt, because sexy panda women will probably be quite creepy.

Lisa Poisso (@emused) (gplus.to/lpoisso) We're keeping the desktop systems turned off as much as possible due to the heat, so I won't be playing any games this weekend. As for pandas -- after spending money to race-change away from the worgen female that I tried my best to keep immersed in Gilnean lore, I'm done with furries and things like running around with my tail in the air. Pandas: /ignore.

Mat McCurley (@gomatgo) (gplus.to/gomatgo) This weekend, it's all about League of Legends and playing the Humble Indie Bundle games I picked up. Exciting. My stance on pandas: done well, it'll be fun. I'm scared, however, that we're going to get weirdly sexualized panda women, done poorly like worgen females, and it could be awful. I am hoping for the good side of things.

Matt Rossi (@MatthewWRossi) (gplus.to/MatthewWRossi) This weekend will be DA2 Legacy and hopefully some writing. As for pandaren, I see no reason to believe we're getting playable pandaren. We went to Northrend, didn't get playable tuskarr or vrykul. Just because something lives somewhere doesn't mean we'll get to play one of them. Pandaria could well be an awesome place to explore and a blank canvas for Blizzard to give us entirely new stuff on. I'd be excited to see it.

Michael Gray (@writegray) (gplus.to/writegray/) I'm probably working on building a fence and a dog run. We just found out the Dark Puppy's daycare is closing in August, so I've only a few weeks to build an extra 200 feet of fence, put a reliable dog home in it, and also get started brewing beer for BlizzCon. It's going to be a busy weekend.

As for pandas ... well. I'm waiting to see if it's true, and then what they'll be like. I hate to be that guy, but if it's just copy/paste of current pandaren crap ...I just don't know. I'm not looking to have Blizzard do offensive Asian stereotypes for the lulz. I'm holding out faith that it won't turn out that way.

Robin Torres (@cosmiclaurel) (gplus.to/cosmiclaurel) The adorable but needy Spawn is taking all of my time, so I only have the chance to play games that can be paused or are otherwise not MMO-y: Faerie Solitaire, Tiny Tower and maybe some Firelands dailies after she goes to bed. As far as the panda news, I am hoping that it is some cutesy mobile app (which I would love) and not the actual expansion.

Tyler Caraway (@murmursofadruid) ...

Tyler was probably too busy with his boyfriend to write any of this WRUP nonsense this week. And how could you blame him, really?

The weekend is the perfect time to kick back, relax and enjoy some game time. Are you an achievement junkie? Can't get enough raiding? Rolling a new alt? Considering taking the leap into roleplaying? Whatever your favorite way to play World of Warcraft, let us know in the comments what you're playing this weekend!

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