World of Warcraft Review
This game simply cannot be summed up into one short article review. Remember that as you read the rest of this review. There is just simply too much content to cover; I'll only be covering the most important topics.
I used to be a huge fan of the Warcraft series. I played through all three games (and expansion packs) and loved every minute of it. So when I heard the news that Blizzard was launching a Warcraft MMORPG? I went nuts. It was a dream come true!
I didn't actually get the game until over a year after it was released, though. Some of my friends had finally got it and I bought it too, immersing myself into a fantastic world. This world had everything Warcraft - the races, the settings, the skills, the characters. It was great.
Before I get into the details, let me say this - WoW is truly an MMORPG. With millions of players, it feels like this really is a world of its own. But be warned - you'll only appreciate this game fully if you have a lot of time to dispense on it. As much as Blizzard denies that, having played it myself I know that much to be true. But if you can give up plenty of time, you will be glad you spent it on this game.
First I'll start with the graphics. Everything is, in every sense, massive. Once you load up the game, you don't load up any other areas (except for a few certain areas, but that's a different story). You could, if you so desired, run from one side of a continent to another without be hassled by loading zones. If you did that, though, it could take several hours to get there. It's like a real continent. It's amazing how there is to do!
Everything you see in the immediate backdrops of areas can be explored. Mountains, streams, and forests - It's all there for you to tackle. And with two continents and a large island to go to, the gameplay areas are almost endless. And just in case your computer can't handle it, you can always turn the detail down.
The character models are also incredibly well done. Each character looks different from another. And with a heaping helping of different details, the world is full of diverse characters, even inside the races. And, each race has different emotes to watch and hear and have fun.
The audio is also truly amazing. It is a fully orchestrated soundtrack that changes depending on your environment or actions. When you’re in battle, the music will be intense, while in a town it will be calmer. It helps to give a very immersing feeling to the game. All of the characters have voice commands, too. From shouting "I need a heal," "I'm out of mana," or "Mooo," if you happen to be a Tauren, each phrase is different depending on your race and gender, providing an even more authentic feel to the game.
Everything controls very naturally, too. All the skills that you set are assigned to a number, so you don't actually even have to move your mouse while playing. Just use the W, A, S, and D keys to move, the number buttons to cast spells, and tab to select enemies, and you're set. And if you don't like that way, the game allows you to reset certain letters on the keyboard to certain actions.
Obviously the game has an enormous lifespan. I know people who have been playing the game for no less than 3 hours a day for the last 3 months and are only level 40 or so out of 60. It's amazing how much you can do in this game. Say you get tired of grinding (which, unfortunately, happens all too often). You can just go to a town, into a Battleground, and start duking it out with players of the opposing faction in a well-designed Capture the Flag scenario.
There really aren't many complaints here. The Blizzard team responds very well to problems. Rude players are dealt with. Cheating is fought very heavily, as is gold farming. The only complaint I have is that the classes are unbalanced in places. But if you really, really, want to get into that right now - I won't for the sake of length - go here, to the WoW forums. Feel free to open up the class' forums and read their complaints all you like.
While I don't play it anymore, Blizzard really got this game right. This game is the standard to which all MMORPGs need to live up to. I'd be willing to say this is the best MMORPG out on the market with things to do for those who only have 15-30 minutes as well as those who have hours. Even better, Blizzard is constantly fixing and tweaking the game, ever loyal to their fanbase. Congratulations, Blizzard, on a job well done.