Apr 1st 2012 10:25PM Thanks for an excellent article, Anne.
I don't have much to add to what's already been said.
It's a thoroughly depressing place to be if you level an Alliance character in the present-day game. I play both sides so I see the differences in the leveling experience. There's never a break for the Alliance character and I'm not entirely sure why the Blizzard story-tellers have postured it out this way. There has to be a pay-off as an incentive for a person to play one faction or the other. So far from what I've heard from Chris Metzen and the end-game raid involving Garrosh, I don't see a significant payoff for the Alliance (even in an interview just published on Friday).
Reinforcing this lack of incentive for Alliance players in Cataclysm was the treatment of the neutrality of Thrall versus Malfurion. Horde players got to see their faction leader saving the world while the Horde advanced on multiple fronts; Alliance players saw Malfurion saving the world and ignoring what was happening to his people. It was a brutal reality for the Alliance coupled with no presence from the Alliance faction leaders in the story that played out.
I'm not optimistic about the story for the Alliance in Mists either. Seeing the leaked videos of Theramore provoke more sadness than anger because it seems the the developers don't see what they're instilling in the Alliance player-base: a lack of hope that the situation in-game will ever get better or that the Alliance will ever take back something or ever bring anyone to actual justice beyond some hackneyed nonsensical ending. And who wants to play that kind of game?
Mar 29th 2012 3:35PM I have a theory that the Horde forces were after the same thing that Varian is so concerned about in the Alliance intro.
He's after Anduin.
Perhaps Garrosh knew Anduin is often in Theramore. Perhaps Anduin fled Theramore after its destruction and the Horde navy was persuing Anduin's ship before it got off course and ended up in Pandaria.
Mar 29th 2012 3:31PM It may not be so much that the factions of the Horde owe funds to Orgrimmar but that the various factions have been borrowing from the Goblin cartels to fund the war effort. I can't see how Orgrimmar has the funds to loan to the various factions. Could be the war effort is bankrupting the Horde.
Mar 28th 2012 3:32PM @ Nagaina
As already mentioned above, Varian knows that Arthas destroyed Lordaeron.
However, at the Wrathgate it was the Forsaken, members of the Horde under Thrall at the time, that launched a plague upon the combined forces in front of the Wrathgate. Varian may have officially declared war on the Horde in the Undercity, but open warfare had already been going on for years between the Horde and the Alliance. He didn't need to declare since it was already a fact.
No doubt it was a rogue portion of the Forsaken that launched the plague at that time but it was an open secret if you've done the Forsaken quests that Sylvanas had ordered the development of the plague. Experiments were conducted in the open on Alliance soldiers and civilians (and still are if you visit the Apothecary today). Varian saw this firsthand in the Undercity. Even after this "rogue" element of the Forsaken was eliminated, the combined Horde forces continue to use the plague in Gilneas and the destruction of Southshore. Varian and the Alliance hold the Horde accountable for these actions.
Mar 23rd 2012 11:36AM Ok, I don't get the answer to loop_not_defined's question. I'd personally love if Zaela or Vol'jin as warchief as well but it's already confirmed they ain't gonna to be warchief.
Thrall is coming back as warchief.
I've read and seen a video interview with J. Allen Brack stating Thrall is coming back.
It sadly looks like a done deal at the moment.
Mar 23rd 2012 9:59AM I'd have to say my feelings are the same as yours. The artwork, overall look, and new features of the expansion are pretty good but I think they've backed themselves into a corner with the story they're developing and they know it. I was surprised that they announced the final raid but then didn't come right out and announce the most important element of the raid - Thrall's return as warchief. That detail we had to see come out in a couple of interviews with J. Allen Brack on a few general gaming sites instead of here. It was like they were testing the waters with this detail rather than trumpeting it as a major part of the expansion. I suspect there's more we don't know about the story and they're concerned about how the player base will accept it. The enthusiasm just seemed to be lacking from Blizzard compared to previous tours from the video interviews I saw.
Mar 22nd 2012 11:56AM There's an interview at Gameplanet where J. Allen Brack where he pretty much says it's Thrall coming back as warchief:
"I'm really excited about it from a player perspective, because I think if you're an Alliance player, the idea about doing a raid into the heart of your enemies capital is really satisfying, and deposing the enemy leader is super gratifying. On the Horde side, it's going to be super cool to have a raid in your own home town, and who doesn't want Thrall to be the leader of the Horde?"
Mar 19th 2012 4:16AM You mean where the Alliance is again being used as a plot foil to the Horde-centric storyline? You mean where the focus of this new expansion will be all about the removal of Garrosh so Thrall can return as warchief? An expansion that starts with the destruction of the second largest Alliance settlement and ends with the Alliance "joining" the Horde in the removal of its leader? How exactly is that an Alliance-centric storyline where the faction can't even accomplish the main goal of retribution on its own?
Will Orgrimmar be destroyed by the Alliance in retaliation for Theramore? Of course not. It needs to remain as the Horde's capital city for gameplay purposes. And why would the Alliance not completely burn it down? Because Thrall will return to the mantle of warchief and reinstate the peace between the two factions.
It's always going to be about Thrall.
Mar 4th 2012 11:32AM Grizzly Hills, Feralas, Mulgore, Dun Morogh ... ah heck, I like all of WoW's music.
Feb 21st 2012 7:52PM This would certainly take care of the gold sellers. I don't see why all gold isn't account-bound already. If you need to buy anything, it all has to be done through the auction house. Transactions through the auction house are more easily monitored by Blizzard so I would think it would stop gold-selling in its tracks.
More to the article's point, what the heck does Blizzard selling gold have to do with fixing the auction house? Having them sell gold would wreck the in-game economy even more than the outside gold-sellers are doing now.