Archive

WoW: Mists of Pandaria Beta First Look

Posted Thu, Mar 22, 2012 by Xerin

Mists of Pandaria beta just went live and the team here at Ten Ton Hammer has charged head first into the latest incarnation of World of Warcraft. Currently, testing is limited to the Pandarian starting zones, so we’ll bring you more as the beta opens up. Staggered content releases are rather normal, so it’s something that we all should expect.  What’s available though, I dare say, is breathtaking.

Beta Client Fun

I haven’t needed to install WoW in a long time, so it was a shock to see how fast the Beta Client started up and had MoP ready to go. It literally took about ten minutes for the initial download to complete and the game to reach playable status. The battle.net tools for moving characters over are quick and easy to use without any bloat, making the process smooth and streamlined.

Exploring Pandaria

First, the new Pandaren models are absolutely fabulous. Both the male and female models are adorable, cute, and fit snuggly within the background setting. Seeing a Pandaren in Stormwind isn’t odd or discouraging like many thought, but actually very apropos. The models have even improved since we’ve last seen them live and the female model is especially surprising.

The graphics are, again, top notch. We’re definitely seeing Blizzard’s A-game when it comes to this expansion. It’s like walking through Nagrand again, which is a good thing. The bright and vibrant graphics haven’t been seen since The Burning Crusade anyway, with the cold harsh landscape that Wrath of the Lich King brought and the gritty ash covered themes that came with Cataclysm being in our recent memory. This makes gameplay a lot more refreshing and fun.

Of course, they’re still WoW graphics and the game engine is showing its age, but at least we’re still see improvements, which is important to the overall health of the game.

Monk-fu

The Monk class is fun. Sadly, I wasn’t able to snag one of the premades before they shut the system down, but we here at Ten Ton Hammer will bring tons of coverage about this class we expand our playtime with it. My experience breaks down into two parts: the starting zone and the class itself.

The starting area, The Wandering Isle, was fun and streamlined. I liked the approach that they’ve been fine tuning since TBC. You start off with a few introductory “how to play” quests that present basic combat, equipment, movement, and world interaction. Then you move into the meat and potato storytelling and adventurering, both of which are smooth.

The only issue I found was that the area hasn’t been properly tuned for the zerg rush of new adventurers. I had to search for some enemies, wait until others were taken care of, you know the usual thing. I’m sure that the zone will be brimming with enemies by the time the game is ready for primetime.

The Monk, at least in lower levels, is a fun departure from your standard classes. It works much like a Rogue and Death Knight merging together into a fisticuff friendly class. The energy allows you to build chi points (which are like runes / combo points) that aren’t time / enemy sensitive. Your chi points synergize with your energy skills to create a fluid rotation.

Of course, the animations for the new skills look fantastic and have a lot of neat motion to them. They’re actually, at least at the lower levels, more graphical than a lot of the other spells for other classes. Of course, that could just be the new shiny class syndrome sitting in that makes you drool over something because it’s new and different, so take that for what you will.

New Talents

I’ve played with the talents in MoP for a little bit so far and I have to say the new system is nice. I’m not going to go into if the viability of class specific talents, but I will comment on how slick the talent picking UI is. Many times I’ve nearly gone cross eyed from staring at the large lists of talents, but now everything is easy and very user friendly.

Although, I don’t believe in dumbing down game components to make them more accessible, so it isn’t a change that I’m entirely comfortable with. I am, however, happy that they’ve executed their ideas very fluidly and the entire system is easy to use and very intuitive.

Further into MoP

This is only covering our day one thoughts on MoP. Stay tuned to Ten Ton Hammer as we continue to cover the expansion and bring you the latest and greatest content from Mists of Pandaria.

What are your thoughts about the expansion so far? Looking forward to the panda rush or dreading the new talent system? Let us know in the comments section below.


I'd of so much rather had the Monk "Class" be rolled out to various races already in the game...

I just can't get into the whole Panda model/thing :(

Will be interesting to see how it flies with the community in general.

the monk is being rolled out to the other races except ofr Goblin and Worgen.

Really??!!

I've heard nothing about that at all...if so that's actually a good thing imo

I'll see if I can find an official conformation somewhere.

If you have a link to something I'd appreciate it :)

Regards

I personally think the expansion is rediculous, however if Blizzard are trying to appeal to the casual market or age 15 and under then it is probably great.

It's been one of the most casual game on the market since launch, what are you talking about?

I always thought Blizzard peaked on crappiness when they introduced to WoW "Undead inter dimensional space goats that ride motorcycles". I was wrong.

The theme of this expansion just seems wrong for WoWs setting and the author of this article is delusional if he honestly believes they fit in well.

I for one, think Wrath of the Lich King will be a refreshing new spin on wow. The Death knight sounds fun and I want to ensure I am ablke to wear a fishing hat until right up to the new 80 cap.

Dr. Sheldon Cooper

Think you're a little late to the party Dr. ;)

lol

@ Dr. Sheldon Cooper

I bet you're not even a real doctor. You're a big fat, curley headed fuck. Learn your WoW loser. I bet you live a home with you mother. Fishing hat.....curley headed fuck.

Dale Doback

Woah, that's a bit uncalled for.

Plus if you're going to slander someone, at least have good grammar and sentence structure.

This comment needs to be deleted by the Mods!

dr. sheldon cooper is a character from the big bang theory fyi

I agree with Dr. Cooper. Mr. Doback your language is rude. I thought that was an older expansion though. Is it true they are re-tweaking Lich King whenb Pandaria is released. It that the big secret buzzing around?

Karen S

The 1st trailer for mists has a 50% dislike bar on youtube which means over 2 million dislikes, this article reeks curley head.

Eeeexcept there aren't millions of likes/dislikes. I think the likes/dislikes bar only has a total of MAYBE five, six hundred thousand hits?

Excuse me!!!

I don't even have curley hair...and why call me names? Bit immature are we? I assume your gaming time runs into poop time and homework.

@Karen, A far as I know they are only working on the new Burning Crusade expansion. Looking forward to flying mounts!! :D. So Mr. Doback is full of **insert here**. I would appreciate if someone blocked him, dare say mock him on my behalf.

regards,

Dr. Sheldon Cooper

Don't get all offended, it's a movie reference from the movie Step Brothers. John C Reilly's character's name is Dale Doback and he has Curly hair. He was merely quoting movie lines

I heard the youtube numbers are a fake. The anticipation of this game will wock and roll. I also heard they will include your name in a waffle for a prise if you pre-order.

I think the game will be awesome. I've always wanted Blizzard to add the monk class! Also I think the new landscape will be a pleasent change from our usual dreary plague striken lands.

I think the game will be awesome. I've always wanted Blizzard to add the monk class! Also I think the new landscape will be a pleasent change from our usual dreary plague striken lands.

Bring on the pet battles, Normally new expansion comes out and it gets played to death for a month or 2 and then loose interest, so with all the new little mini additions I am hoping it makes me want to play longer.

when is it coming out so we can play it in game?

With these tips you can start to see some store cars. Thus, the future buyer sees what they offer, the vehicle status, price, etc.. and becomes a new honda rough idea of what can be depending on what you're willing to pay. First contact is used to get an overall idea.

News from around the 'Net