World of Warcraft has become a genre-spanning, pop-culture phenomenon. In the massively competitive MMO arena, it has staked its claim as the one true king over and over again. Projects with massive budgets have come and gone, but the realm of Azeroth has endured. Over the years, with each passing update, Blizzard have shown their mastery in understanding what makes a great gameplay experience. Outland, another realm which they later introduced into the game, was equally appreciated for its fantastic quests and tons of content and loot. With their latest update, Warlords of Draenor or WoD, Blizzard have once again proven that they’ve got the formula World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor PC Reviewdown pat. World of Warcraft continues to be one of the most challenging, fun and consistently engaging MMO games in the market. There are very few other games that are so content-rich that players literally live out their lives inside the game.
The Set Up:
The previous expansion, Mists of Pandaria, introduced gamers to the Pandaren people and ended with the big-bad Garrosh Hellscream managing to evade his captors. The plot of Warlords of Draenor involves Garrosh time-travelling back to the land of Draenor, uniting the Orc forces into what becomes the Iron Horde, and finally opens the portal to unleash a reign of terror on the land of Azeroth. The opening cinematic, is, in true Blizzard fashion, truly spectacular. The pulse-pounding action and brilliant dialogues in the cinematic get you pumped to once again play your part in this epic adventure. You can choose to be part of the resistance, or part of the force that invades Azeroth. It’s tough not to sit back and marvel at the consistent home-runs Blizzard continues to hit in the cinematic department. For returning players, the premise will remind you of the time the Legion invaded Azeroth, and infuse you with the appropriate amount of foreboding.
So, this time, it’s Garrosh and not Lord Kazzak who uses the Dark Portal to unleash their forces onto the world. Blizzard isn’t unaware of the similarities between these two events. As a matter of fact, it deftly touches upon several elements of the previous story, only this time, it’s an alternate enemy. It’s a fantastic “What If?” scenario and Blizzard handles the details expertly. There’s a bit of time-traveling multiverse space time mumbo jumbo to understand, but you’ll get it once you start playing the game. The story of World of Warcraft is designed to appeal to casual and hardcore gamers. If you’re a lore fiend, you will have plenty of inside jokes, references and special appearances to enjoy.
The New Changes:
WoD isn’t simply a story reboot though. There have been a lot of changes to the gameplay and technical side of things too. For one, the stat system has been reworked to make the on-screen numbers a bit more palatable. I mean, a million HP, really? It was getting ridiculous. But if you suddenly find your pimped-out character has lower stats, don’t worry, everything has been evened out across the board. You’ll still find the same level of challenge you did in the previous expansion. So you’ll see less 0s pop up behind your damage counters, but its fine. In addition, Blizzard has taken away a lot of the more complicated stats related to combat and characters such as dodge and parry ratings. As a result, it’s easier than ever to build and upgrade your own garrison that suits your play style.
The ability tree has been overhauled too. Now, there’s a more defined set of skills that each class can choose from, and there are lower cooldowns. So you won’t need to be a Beethoven-esque keyboard warrior with seventeen complex macro systems running in the background. New gamers, rejoice. Returning gamers and purists, worry not. You can instantly have a 90 level character and roam around the world experimenting with builds and skill choices.
The graphics, long maligned as one of the game’s shortcomings, have received a minor upgrade. While the game still looks like its 5 years old, at least there are fewer blocky character models. Sooner or later, the graphics problem is going to catch up with World of Warcraft. For now though, players can World of WarCraft WoD Reviewenjoy slightly better graphics on their maxed-out Orc warriors and any other characters they’ve been building.
The auction house system has been slightly reworked, and players will now be able to find items they were looking for more easily. The overall UI has received a lot of changes, making it more intuitive and user friendly than it has ever been. Finally, quest items receive their own menu slot. When you consider the amount of gear and consumables you have to lug along, any improvements in the organization system is a welcome change. The game is more quest oriented than ever, and it’s easier to find raids or dungeons. Slowly but surely, Blizzard is working on presenting the player with a different version of the world to the player depending upon their gameplay choices. For example, you may be able to interact with NPCs that have died in other player’s storylines, because you chose a different story path.
WoD is a massive upgrade to the World of Warcraft experience. New bosses, more lands to explore and an improved interface mean that both new and old players will enjoy this offering. Blizzard has made just enough changes to improve the player experience without completely changing the basic nature of the game. Critics have been calling World of Warcraft an aging mammoth that’s on its way out, but WoD proves that there’s life left in Blizzard’s powerhouse. Put your favorite helm on, and get to questing!
Game Score: 8.2 Out of 10