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September 8, 2008 | by  | in Games |
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World of Warcraft

Game: World of Warcraft:
Wrath of the Lich King Beta (Wotlk)
Genre: MMORPG (Massive Multiplayer Online Role
Playing Game – or in WoW’s case – a second job.)
Platform: Windows, Mac OS X
Publisher: Blizzard

(A Reader sent this review in, handwritten, over four pages. I had to print it. I understand that it won’t make sense to most people – but for the true 1337 gamers who can decipher it. Enjoy.)

Over 5 million people have been waiting for this expansion since the trailer came out. But Blizzard protect their release dates like a father protecting his daughter’s virginity. However, with the release of beta on the test realms, many estimate it’s going on the shelves around Christmas time.

Now for some beta review (for those of you who don’t know what beta is, it is a release of wotlk patch on a test realm to check for ‘bugs’ and if any classes are ‘overpowering’):

Mage
Frost mage: Currently all freeze (frost nova, frost bite) are bugged, with no diminishing return – i.e. the first nova goes for eight seconds, the second freeze for eight seconds too. Blizz will change this back to 8,6,4,2, immune soon. I found that levelling with frost is a lot easier than fire, because you do not have to drink at all. You go oom (out of mana) in about six minutes, but then just PVP evocation and keep going. Currently mobs can’t touch you due to the freeze bug so sitting down to eat/bandage is not necessary.

Fire mage: Blizz changed fire to pure aoe (area of effect) damage output, and I believe at level 80 frost + arcane will exceed the damage of fire + arcane on single targets.

Arcane mage: Once again, not much improvement. 61 talent was not very impressive due to huge mana cost and very little increase in output compared to arcane missiles.

Warlock
Metamorphosis: turns you into a demon and unsummons your pet. Very lame spell. Considering the abilities you gain in demon form are said to be useless in raids.

Chaos bolt: destruction locks new shadow bolt. It goes through bubble, iceblock etc and does slightly more damage than shadow bolt while ignoring all resistance. Seems to be very useful in dungeons. But I still don’t see locks PVPing in destruction.

Unfortunately I did not have time to try affliction. But I did try demonic circle: 3 sec cast: summons a demonic circle, which the summoner can instantly teleport to. Interesting spell, probably useful in PVP, not sure about PVE.

Paladin
Retribution. Currently known as retardins, these guys are finally receiving a buff. In raids: judgement of the wise: restore mana to three raid members as a % of the damage your judgement spell dealt. New mana battery cells are now two mins and each time you judge it does not leave you. And even deals damage! For PVP: Avatar of war. Your hand of freedom removes all stuns.

Changes in blessings: All blessing spells have been removed. Instead we receive hand of <***>. Only major change is salvation. <-30% threat currently> now changed to -% of threat over x seconds.

Divine storm: Currently ignores all armour. So with just level 71 quest gear, it crits for over 7k! Pull so much agro in dungeons!

Holy: Basin of light, Many believe this is very bad, but it heals not ‘party’ but raid members as HoT. The range of ten yards is not impressive but extremely helpful for level 80 raids. With just 2000 + healing atm, it already goes for 600 or so per trick.

Protection: finally, paladins receive shield wall. Divine protection: reduce all damage taken by the player by 50%; the talent tree itself still focuses on aoe tanking, but to be honest with you, levelling as pivot with a healer is a lot faster than holy.

Warrior
Titan’s grip: you can now dual wield two-handed weapons. And there is no atk speed penalty anymore. This results as you can blood thirst crit for over 9000 with top quality level 70 gear.

Protection: Currently heroic leap can make you jump over walls, this could be a bug. But in instances warriors just cannot hold agro due to the mass damage output of all classes. Their shield wall has been nerfed to -50% damage taken. And blizz announce that at level 80, no class should be able to pull agro on bosses even with the nerf on blessing of salvation.

Environmental Northrend is not very big, about 85% of Outland. Once you arrive you have a choice of starting in two zones. Dalaran will become the new Shattrath city. But you will need to complete a chain quest before entering.

Mobs are same old same old: viking, nagath, yetis and undead. Blizz can really work on making new models.

Battlegrounds are currently not available in test realms.

Questing
The amount of gold you receive is amazing. ~9g per quest while only at level 70. I presume questing at level 80 will be ~40g per quest. Each mob gives ~800 exp needed from 70~71 is about 700k. Took me three hours to get to 71.

Items
You will be able to replace all +6 (including sun well +6) at ~ level 75. Even green items are better than level 70 epics.

Overall

The music/graphics are still the same. Really just new content. But beta is bugged from head to toe, and playing with all these bugs ain’t fun. Therefore I did not have time to try death knight, shaman, priest, and hunters. I apologise for this, and if you are currently a wow player, I hope you do play wotlk when it comes out. I see the game going further than any other blizz games.

Evamoon
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