The long blogging road to Cataclysm, and other thoughts

I pre-ordered my copy of Cataclysm a few months ago, so the boxes should hopefully be arriving today. As a result, I wasn’t actually online at midnight with the digital download crowd.

It didn’t matter. The excitement was off the scale last night and it was fun to be part of it. For some reason on my server when there’s new content due out, loads of people like to go stand on top of the quest givers to obstruct other people. They started to pile on top of the flight master in Orgrimmar at least 2 hours before the expansion actually went live. You have to admire that sort of dedication.

One thing this launch does mark is the end of the long (very long) blogging road from the last big WoW patch, which is when Icecrown Citadel was released, until today. For most of that time, those of us who weren’t in the Cataclysm beta had very little new high level stuff to write about.

This was the point at which the beta players were able to churn out maps and guides and information for a thirsty audience. And they did, in vast numbers. People ran out and bought Cataclysm related domain names purely on the strength of that beta invite (I’m not linking because it’s tedious over-commercialised levelling guide stuff, but understand that there is an actual business advantage to be gained from having priority access to the content).

And everyone else was writing about what our cats did that week, or the WoW equivalent. Now for me, being shut out of the new content means the blog posts start to get a little random. I hope it’s been an interesting ride, it certainly challenges me to get my head together. And it means that when my copy does arrive, I’ll come to the new content fresh and hopefully it’ll be bug free.

In any case, I’d especially like to thank all the other bloggers who didn’t have beta access (particularly if you focus on WoW) for hanging in there through the dry patch. There’s no in game achievement for that kind of dedication but that’s partly the point.

Incidentally, when I logged in this morning, one of my guildies noted that he’d seen level 84s on the server already. I suspect they will be raiding by tonight. (For comparison, as I write this, the expansion doesn’t go live on the US servers for another hour.)

There is also a discussion thread on mmo-champion about the world first 85 (yes of course someone hit max level already).

So how big is Cataclysm exactly?

We know that previous WoW expansions have been amongst the biggest PC sellers of the years when they were released. And there’s no reason to think that Cataclysm will be any different.

But this year there is a difference, Blizzard offered a digital download option and it’s likely that a lot of players will have taken them up on it. So how will we get the overall sales numbers? That’s going to be an interesting news story to look out for this week, especially if Cataclysm doesn’t hit the top of the sales lists for retail sales (although I suspect it probably will as well.)

And lastly, what do you do when Deathwing comes?

cata_daydeathwingcame1 (Picture from ‘The Day Deathwing Came’)

8 thoughts on “The long blogging road to Cataclysm, and other thoughts

  1. I was online last night puttering around in Un’goro levelling mining of all things. When 11pm GMT kicked in I was there for that message to log out and back in for the new stuff to be available after purchasing the digital download. However, the vast majority of players doing that meant I couldn’t even log in, I’ll just have to get on with it later when I can. I do think it’s sad though that people are already at 85, I’ll never be that hardcore and would like to appreciate the expansion rather than rush to the end and then whine about the end-game content not being up to much when the thing has only be released for hours.

    • I suspect you’ll probably find that the guys who powerlevel really fast will still intend to explore the content – they’ll just do it later on an alt.

      The thing that bugs me is that after all the leaps and strides Blizzard is making in making the quest layout accessible (hence all the comments about hand holding), people still feel the need to use levelling guides. Why, people, why? Is it still not easy enough yet?

      • Some people *really* want to be told what to do, I guess. It’s a mental wiring I don’t understand, but so long as they aren’t trying to tell me what to do, to each their own.

  2. It certainly is an achievement to blog your way through the entire Wrath without being in the beta. Many bloggers went silent towards the end. But we stuck to it. Yay us!
    And isn’t it such a blast to open the Christmas gifts now, with everything unbroken and unspoiled, a game full of exploration and surprises!

  3. Haha, I heard about the flight-master dogpile thing. WHY?! I wasn’t around much on the night-before-Christma..err..Cataclysm, tbh, but several guildies had the digital download and were excitable all over vent and the forums. I’m glad not to be chasing an expansion like I was with Wrath but equally I don’t really see the big advantage of rushing.

    Just wanted to say thank you for the random but always interesting blogging. To be honest, I was rather tired of all the Cata-beta stuff and the “how to gear your [spec-class] at 82” guides. I make a policy decision (heh, by which I mean … a decision) that I *wasn’t* going to read anything about Cata, because I wanted to experience it for myself so actually I was really really appreciative of people who kept the blogging homefires burning.

  4. Pingback: Dragon Age 2 Demo! « Welcome to Spinksville!

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