Feb 11th 2011 7:40AM Well the original vision of SL was inspired by The Avenue in Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash. We still haven't anything that comes close to that because SL has never been marketed in such a way that companies and visionaries might jump on board to create a virtual world where you could do real shopping etc... and there have never been officially set standards that could help create the atmosphere of The Avenue.
The technology is there and can only improve so that you could log into SL and wander The Avenue and shop at your favorite clothing store, see items on your avatar before you buy them, buy furniture for your house by seeing how they look in your house before you purchase, read your news and blogs with embedded videos etcetc...
... the potential for a virtual world gateway to the internet is there it just isnt being used.
Feb 4th 2011 8:06AM I am totally certain you didnt mean to lead with the picture of Sylvanas up there but that's my favorite chain. The entire Forsaken starting quest lines where you get to ride with the Dark Lady herself.
Dec 10th 2010 8:17AM Seconded. I love Sylvanas as a character and had one of the best times I've had in WoW doing those Silverpine quests. Must find out how to get a Dark Lady cloak. Then I might actually turn my Show Cloak feature back on.
Dec 8th 2010 11:56AM Thank you so much for this lore article (and well written) I was just wanting this earlier. I've completed the Silverpine horde quest chains mentioned around these parts and I think it is safe to say it is one of my favorite experiences in the game. They did such a superb job of writing it all and being able to ride along with Sylvanas rocked.
I was having a really hard time reconciling those quests and timeline with the worgen starting areas though and this clarified some of that though I still wish for a more fleshed out version of the worgen quests that led up to the death of Godfrey and all that. Ah well. Also unfortunate that they didnt have a breaking of the Greymane Wall cutscene, I was really expecting that as it is a pretty critical moment.
Other than that... I dont have to apologize for Sylvanas. She's evil. I don't want her dead though, i want her victorious because she may be evil, but the Dark Lady is evil... with STYLE. (and I really want one of those nifty dark lady symbol cloaks)
Nov 30th 2010 11:10AM I love all the work that has gone into the new Azeroth. It's not terribly easy to come up with new quest dialogue that fits a modern storyline and yet leave the original world intact in many places. The new troll area is refreshing and the new Orgrimmar... well. Grimmer. I like it. The one thing I feel is lacking though despite all of the hard work that clearly went into this is that the zones feel very out of balance. For a world that was supposed to be shattered by Deathwing there are only a few zones that truly feel that way. Darkshore is the one that comes immediately to mind of all the new zones I've tried so far. Major praise for whoever worked on that area. It flows beautifully in the quest design like Blizzard learned in Northrend and gives you a real sense of just how utterly screwed the Night Elves are there with attacks from all sides. Other areas really didnt feel that way at all. Stonetalon is fun and engaging but just kinda... there... Redridge... fun but really not changed at all from the Cataclysm. Overall enjoyable but it feels unevenly developed in area and quest design that sometimes leaves me scratching my head. That said... I cant wait to go try out the Forsaken starting areas everyone is raving about but that will have to be put on hold until I dig into the new Azshara.
Nov 29th 2010 7:48AM I played a lot of MU*s for a while but when Everquest came out I rather avoided it like the plague because I didn't think it could live up to the level of detail I expected nor the dynamic nature of the MU* worlds that I had created. So... when some folks at work were playing Warcraft I figured it was time to try it out.
I started out as a Night Elf and had no idea what to expect from it at all. This was all back when WoW was still shiny and new. Raids between Southshore and Tarren Mill where a blast, you had to plan and carefully handle the dungeons, and scrounging up gold for your first mount usually involved a bit of grinding.
I took my time as I still do because I'm an explorer and went through every quest in Teldrassil and Darkshore and spent ridiculous amounts of time clambering over hill and dale in Ashenvale. Then someone asked if I had ever been to Ironforge. What? Ironforge? They took me on a a ship to Menethil Harbor and the run through the Wetlands and up into the mountains to the Gates of the great Dwarven city. It still stands out as a defining moment in my MMO explorations. I looked up at those massive gates and stoneworks and truly felt like an ignorant country bumpkin come at last to the great Dwarven halls from the lush greens and purple tranquil lighting of my Night Elf home.
Over those first months I spent a lot of time defending Auberdine from raids. One particularly memorable moment was hitting 60 and seeing a raid incoming on my way from Astranaar and called out for help. There were a couple 40s around and a slew of younglings. They rallied to the call to defend their homeland from the rabble of the Horde... by Elune they would not set foot in Darnassus! Many bodies of the newbies lay strewn across the battlefield of Darkshore that day... but in the end... we won against superior forces.
Going in and re-doing all those areas today is... almost tragic. As I've been playing through Cataclysm Darkshore is still the one area that stands out to me as superior work on the part of the Blizzard team. They've put a lot of love into the impending destruction of Darkshore, the destruction of Auberdine by a tidal wave; the very land itself is crumbling and the Night Elves are under assault from all sides. While there may not be raids by the Horde any longer, you can bet my new hunter will be as protective of the land as ever before.
... oh yea ... and we once raided the Crossroads with so many people that we crashed our server ... but not before I was witness to one orc warrior on the battlefield dressed in the best of gear looking truly imposing and fearsome. He carved through our ranks like no other leaving a trail of bodies in his wake like nothing I've ever seen before or sense, laughing at our feeble attempts to claim his land.
Oct 21st 2010 12:03PM While I had been a fan of games and online games for many years, Warcraft was still my first. I began as a night elf and spent quite a lot of time in the good ol' woods and along the shores. It never even occurred to me that there was so much more to the game.
Then I reached a point where it was time to expand my horizons and someone took me on the long long long long long run to Ironforge. The ship over was kinda nifty. Then the run through the swamps avoiding alligators and spiders.
... but then you get that first glimpse of the massive stoneworks of the gates of Ironforge and I really felt like a country bumpkin finally coming to the big city for the first time.
Jan 14th 2010 8:15AM This was always the strongest aspect of Vanguard. The starting areas for each race were amazing and detailed and unlike any other MMO I've ever played really drew you into the world, each in their own unique manner. The Kurashasa one is probably the most dramatic in terms of creating an entirely new twist on the perils facing the world of Telon. Sadly... none of the very very rich original lore ever came to fruition.
Dec 23rd 2009 8:02AM /agree
SOE has done nothing but destroy this MMO. This is the one MMO I was really excited about (thats moved to Mortal Online these days) because it offered a lot of really new and interesting systems and potential. The starting zones were hands down the best I've ever seen in a MMO that really got you hooked. The sphere system of alternate advancement and the potential for some seriously amazing stuff with Diplomacy; this is also still the only game I've ever felt compelled to take screenshots in because the environment was so damned cool.
All that potential... flushed... one bit at a time since release.
Nov 24th 2009 8:07AM ok... the kitten is kinda cool. thank you Massively!