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Monday, September 3, 2001
ECTS Report on World of Warcraft
9:46 AM | IMG News | Comment on this story

Unfortunately technical problems have delayed the release of this report, but the thrill of a new Blizzard game is enough to last into a second day, we think you'll agree. Blizzard has just held one off the most eagerly-anticipated Press Conferences to date. In a small and very hot room at ECTS under tight security, their new game World of Warcraft was announced and the game itself shown off to a select group of the world's press.

World of Warcraft, a massively multiplayer, online role-playing game set in the rich fiction of Blizzard's Warcraft universe. Featuring bold 3D graphics and deep, immersive gameplay, World of Warcraft will allow thousands of players to adventure together in this epic world and will provide them with a new, in-depth perspective on familiar lands, former battlefields, and heroes from the legendary universe. In addition, World of Warcraft will introduce new, uncharted territories and foes never before seen by followers of the series.
Taking the transition from 2D to 3D adventures (already started with WarCraft III: Reign of Chaos) to the next logical step, and entering the genre of MMORPG for the first time, this is a bold move by Blizzard. They hope to extend the already immensely popular Warcraft series and take it a new direction, combining the elements that have made the series the addictive classic it is without alienating current fans.
World of Warcraft takes place four years following the aftermath of Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos, where a great tension has settled over the ravaged world of Azeroth. As the various races begin to rebuild their shattered kingdoms, new threats, both ancient and terrifying, have arisen to plague the world once again. Players must explore the lands of Azeroth, forge fellowships with other players, and build their strength in order to prevail.
Blizzard intends to have a dedicated team continuing to work on and within the world which will be born upon the release of this title. As well as constantly updating the game to take account of new problems and tweaking gameplay - something which we have become familiar with from previous titles - this team will continually be adding new content to the world giving an ever-evolving story and questing system. This move will need to be funded, so rather than the free battle.net service, World of Warcraftwill have its own dedicated servers and be based on a monthly subscription model. This is an increasing trend in multi-player gaming, particularly MMORPG's. Here's what Mike Morhaime, Blizzard Entertainment president and co-founder had to say on the subject: "World of Warcraft is our largest undertaking to date," he related to the eager crowd. "We are extremely focused on increasing the scope of the Warcraft universe, giving gamers an incredibly dynamic online gaming experience complete with endless possibilities."

The combat system is going to be action-oriented, although not as fast as we've come to expect from titles such as Diablo II. You will have the ability to take part in furious combat with multiple opponents and allies, while minimizing delays between battles to keep players on the move. There will be fully customizable character classes, with Humans, Orcs and Taurens being shown during the gameplay demo (which was indeed impressive).

World of Warcraft has been in development behind closed doors for about a year and so far only a PC version has been announced. After speaking to the team. We learned a Mac version has not been ruled out and as usual they have developed the game with portability in mind, so watch this space! Expect more from us on the subject of WoW in the coming days, including more in-depth info, character pictures, concept artwork and the all important in-game screen shots! Watch for more reports from the ECTS show flow, coming soon.

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Other Mac Games News for Monday, September 3, 2001

ECTS: All-In-Wonder Radeon 8500DV Announced3:09 PM
AvP Demo, Chat with MacPlay [Correction]1:38 PM
GeForce 3 Ultra Due Soon?12:34 PM
Marathon Aleph One Goes True 3D12:30 PM
World of Warcraft Previews, Impression11:53 AM
Red Faction PC Progress Update11:37 AM
ECTS Report on World of Warcraft9:46 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Monday, September 3, 2001 on one page

Mac Games News for Sunday, September 2, 2001

GameSpot Previews World of Warcraft10:25 AM
Warcraft III Gameplay Movie10:11 AM
Blizzard Announces World of Warcraft10:07 AM
View all of the Mac games news for Sunday, September 2, 2001 on one page

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