the exciting launch of
Mists of Pandaria just a few short days away, we World of Warcraft fans
are stuck playing the dreaded waiting game. While mundane everyday
tasks may fill the time, those who have a true passion for the game
will find that their mind is constantly ticking down the days, hours,
and minutes. This will undoubtedly continue until Pandaria is at last
at our fingertips.

While nothing can take away
this burning desire to play, we can seek to quench the flames, at least
for a little while. The best way I have personally found to do this is
to read more about that the very thing we seek, in this case Mists of
Pandaria. Devouring every bit of information out there seems to make
the waiting more bearable and at the very least, allows us to be
ultimately prepared for the newest expansion to World of Warcraft.

Below you will find five often
overlooked Mists of Pandaria facts that I have stumbled across in my
adventures for knowledge about this expansion across the internet.
Perhaps you are already aware of some of them, and perhaps they will be
as new to you as they were to me when came across them. Regardless they
will hopefully help to sooth your yearning for Mists of Pandaria for a
while at least.

Five Often Overlooked Mists of
Pandaria Facts

Pandaren are NOT Kung Fu Panda
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Mists have parted...but why?

While I was already very aware
of this fact, it seems that many are convinced that the Pandaren we are
destined to meet in Mists of Panadaria are direct rip offs from the
popular children's movie Kung Fu Panda. While this may seem to be the
case, as the Pandaren and Po (the main character in the movie) are both
cartoonish pandas who can kick some serious butt, it could not be
further from the truth.

Looking back into the history
of Warcraft we find that the Pandaren sprouted up in the lore long
before Po was first imagined up by Dreamworks. Pandaren were first
introduced as an April Fools joke before the release of Warcraft III:
Reign of Chaos which was slated for release in July 3, 2002. The "joke"
was met with a wildly popular reception and the Pandaren actually made
their way into the game as a neutral hostile creep. Seemingly beloved
by the players, Pandaren have made appearances in Warcraft games ever

As we know, the movie Kung Fu
Panda was not released until 2008. Meaning, unless Dreamworks leaked
their story idea back in 2002 to Blizzard, it is highly unlikely that
the concept of the Pandaren was divulged from the movie.

The Mists have Parted....for a

Based on my observations during
beta testing I was under the impression that the Horde and Alliance
stumbled across Pandaria while trying to, as usual, wipe each other off
the face of the earth. This of course at least partially true, we know
the Horde and Alliance crash land on the island of Pandaria, but why
were they able to do this?

Pandaria had been shrouded in
its engulfing and protective Mists for time untold and it seems that
none except for the Pandaren inhabitants have ever laid eyes on this
isle until now. Why have the mists receded allowing the rest of the
world in? Is this a doing of fate, of the Pandaren, or of the evil
creatures that also inhabit the land? While we don't have the answers
to these questions yet, it is certainly something to think about. The
mist has lifted and when we can embark upon our journey into Mists of
Pandaria we will hopefully find out why.

The Pandaren Empire

While it is easy to believe
that the elusive Pandaren have always lived upon Pandaria, that simply
(and surprisingly) is not the case. According to history the Pandaren
are originally from central Kalimdor where they established the
Pandaren Empire. Firmly allied with the Night Elves, the Pandaren
seemed destined to eventually become part of the Alliance. That was of
course not destined to happen.

The Night Elves have always
been enamored of magic and eventually the Pandaren felt their obsession
was spiraling out of control. They severed ties with their allies and
sought out a refuge where they could live their lives in peace, they
found such a place on a remote island that we now know as Pandaria.
While there is no changing the past, one can't help but wonder what
things might have been like if the Pandaren had not decided to leave
the shores of Kalimdor.

For the
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Pandaren were replaced by the Draenei as the new playable Alliance race
in the Burning Crusade expansion.

What do the Sunwell and
Pandaria have in common? If you are like me, you are probably of the
opinion that they have absolutely nothing to do with the other.
However, after doing some reading it seems that they may have a
connection after all.

As we know, Pandaria is a land
filled with mysterious, unique, and powerful magic. According to Lands
of Conflict, a source book for the Warcraft RPG, this magic has
unsurprisingly seeped into the gems found in this land. Also revealed
in this book is that the red dragonflight is of the opinion that
crushed gems from Pandaria were a key ingredient needed to fully
rejuvenate the Sunwell.

While the Warcraft book series
is not really considered to be part of the real lore of the game, this
information still managed to peak my interest. Will the magic of
Pandaria be able to rejuvenate the Sunwell. What will this mean for the
Blood Elves and their Wretched kin? All we can do is speculate and
imagine what an interesting storyline this would bring us.

Original Alliance Burning
Crusade Race

One of the most interesting
things I've learned about the Pandaren and Mists of Pandaria is one
that I have only discovered recently. Apparently the expansion Mists of
Pandaria almost wasn't to be. Chris Metzen, in a candid interview at
BlizzCon 2011 with Direct TV, let slip that the Pandaren were the
original Alliance race intended for the World of Warcraft: Burning
Crusade expansion.

Yes, you read that correctly,
Pandaren almost made their appearance as playable characters in the
first World of Warcraft expansion. Is your mind blown yet? Mine was.
Halfway through production of the expansion the Pandaren were replaced
with the loveable blue alien people we know as the Draenei and Blizzard
never looked back, until now at least. In Mists of Pandaria the
Pandaren will finally get their moment in the sun and at long last
become a playable race.

Were you aware of these little
known facts? Do you have other little known facts about the upcoming
Mists of Pandaria expansion that you would like to share? Feel free to
further enrich the minds of the Ten Ton Hammer community and post them
in the comments section found below!

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our World of Warcraft Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

About The Author

Amunet, also fondly known as Memtron, is an organic life form best known for its ongoing obsession with Blizzard Entertainment's numerous properties. To that end, Amu has authored hundreds (thousands?) of the most popular World of Warcraft guides, editorials, and Top 10 lists on the planet. When not gaming and writing, Amu is busy chasing after her three children in a perpetual loop of ongoing disaster.