Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Byte: Outlander

World of Warcraft may very well be the best game ever made. That last sentence shouldn't just be construed to be my opinion, but possibly a simple statement of fact.

After putting over SEVENTEEN DAYS of playing time (that's over 400 hours, mathematics fans!) into a game, it would be easy to get bored, jaded and think "why on Earth am I still paying £8.99 a month for the privilege of playing this?" Less World of Warcraft, more World of Snorecraft. Well, last night I had a solid few hours on the Outland. Oh my, it's fantastic.

With the opening of the Dark Portal, the whole atmosphere of the game has changed. From a server full of fractious, bored and opportunistic gankers, the addition of new content has gotten everyone excited again; even to the point where I was being helped by Horde players when I was being hounded by several mobs I couldn't deal with myself. Within three hours, I'd gained another level (just one short of the magic 60 now!) and gotten some frankly awesome quest rewards and a Rare drop - a pair of Gloves of Ferocity. It's genuinely akin to playing the game for the first time again - an experience I'm sure most players had forgotten and would have given their right arms for to relive that sense of excitement and wonder at experiences something genuinely new and amazing.

I was already seeing people at level 61 last night - having pulled an all-nighter from the previous evening, no doubt - but with the way you accrue experience for completing quests (the first dozen or so you can solo, even at level 58) means that I'll be joining their ranks soon. Put it this way, I'll be shocked if I'm not level 60 by the end of the week. I'm already a quarter of the way there, after only an hour's play from gaining level 59... Boy, I'm looking forward to the next few weeks.
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