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Know Your Lore, Tinfoil Hat Edition: The Mists of Pandaria

The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

I never thought in a million years that I'd be revisiting the topic of the pandaren, but it looks like it's now something worth discussing. Earlier this week, it was discovered that Blizzard filed a new trademark for something called "Mists of Pandaria." Blizzard's done this before, filing the Cataclysm trademark back in 2009 before the expansion was announced. This has led to the assumption that the mysteriously named "Mists of Pandaria" is lined up to be the next expansion. Needless to say, this information was so far out of left field that it appeared to be coming in from the right.

But let's think about this from a lore standpoint. All expansions need a storyline behind them -- now moreso than ever, given the extremely story-driven vehicle that is Cataclysm. For a race that was originally an April Fool's joke, the popularity of the pandaren, as well as what little written word we have on the race, makes this a pretty interesting prospect. Believe it or not, there are actually potential reasons behind all of this, given what's happened so far in Azeroth to date. So let's take a tinfoil hat look at what this expansion could theoretically look like, from a story standpoint.

Today's Know Your Lore is a Tinfoil Hat edition, meaning the following is a speculative look into what has gone before and what's to come. The events presented are just theories at this point and should not be taken as fact.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Know Your Lore: The Pandaren


The World of Warcraft is an expansive universe. You're playing the game, you're fighting the bosses, you know the how -- but do you know the why? Each week, Matthew Rossi and Anne Stickney make sure you Know Your Lore by covering the history of the story behind World of Warcraft.

Brewfest is still ongoing in game until Wednesday, Oct. 6, and while the Alliance has their dwarven brewers and beer lovers behind the festival, there is a race of creatures that are not included in the festivities at all -- well, not directly. I'm speaking, of course, about the mysterious pandaren -- a race of humanoid pandas that is about as elusive as they come. Pandaren have shown up in references here and there in World of Warcraft, but for the most part, they seem to be nothing more than vague Easter eggs. However, the World of Warcraft RPG covered the pandaren extensively and provided some background into the nature-loving race.

Perhaps the most interesting thing about the pandaren is the origins of the race. Of all the races in Azeroth, the pandaren are the least well known but one of the most beloved of many players of the original Warcraft games. The pandaren first showed up in Warcraft III, and from there, the loveable race of humanoid pandas grew exponentially in popularity. Though the original Warcraft and all subsequent games were carefully planned out, the enigmatic panderan began with an April Fools joke that spread like wildfire.

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Pandaren Brewmaster Figure now on sale

The @warcraft twitter account has been posting a few carefully taken pictures of something the past couple days, and today it's been reveled what the object is -- a Pandaren Brewmaster Figure that you can buy from the Blizzard store. The little guy is "on sale" for $50, and there are limited quantities available. Everything is first come, first serve, so if you want one I suggest getting getting it quickly.

The figure is of Chen Stormstout, who left his Pandaren home world to find better ingredients to make his brew with. These figures are usually of pretty high quality, and by the looks of it this one is exceptionally detailed. It's also not a small figure. It's over 8 inches tall and 4 pounds in weight, which makes it quite a nice desk statue.

Should be a good collectable for this who want it!

Filed under: Blizzard, News items

Blizzard reveals some of the contents of the 2008 Blizzcon Goodie Bag

With the release date of BlizzCon 2008 coming ever closer, it should be near time for the floodgates of information to open. One of the questions that's always on everybody's lips about BlizzCons: What's in the goody bag? Blizzard gave us a sneak peek today.

First, they confirmed that the goggled bear mount with a Murloc passenger MMO-Champion discovered a few days ago is in fact the BlizzCon in-game pet. That's right, just head to BlizzCon, and you too could be among the first to own a "multi-passenger" WoW mount.

As for the next item, those of you who are annoyed at the prospect of any old Arthas-killing schlub getting their hands on Frostmourne may want to brace yourselves: now, any BlizzCon-attending schlub can get Frostmourne too: Namely, a 48" inflatable version of the sword. However, only half the bags will have that. The other half will have an inflatable Divine Shield ball, complete with hearthing paladin.

Of course, that won't be all. Blizzard is also promising stuff like "zerg creep," Pandaren Brewmaster bottle openers, Diablo health and mana stress balls, and much more.

With stuff like that, I'd say it may be worth buying a ticket on August 11th for the goody bag alone. But if you can't, don't worry. We'll be sure to have pictures of all the swag for you to drool over come BlizzCon itself, as well as all the coverage you could want on all things BlizzCon, both during the con and in the days leading up to it!

Filed under: Items, Events, WoW Social Conventions, Blizzard, News items, Mounts, BlizzCon

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