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Genre: Adventure & RPG    Expansion For:
Min OS X: 10.4

World Of Warcraft: Cataclysm
December 23, 2010 | Ted Bade

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Mac OS X: 10.5.8 (10.6.4 recommended) |†CPU: Intel Core Duo Processor (Intel Core 2 Duo recommended) | RAM: 2 GB (4GB recommended) | Hard Disk: 25 GB | Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce 9600 GT or ATI Radeon HD 4670 recommended | Requires World of Warcraft

The Cataclysm expansion of Blizzard Entertainment's very popular World of Warcraft MMO was released in early December of 2010. If you are a player and havenít yet upgraded, you are missing out on a lot of new and interesting content. If you arenít a player, read on, you might find yourself tempted to join the fun. WoW is a terrific game that I look forward to playing every day. Not only does one find interesting quests, other tasks, and spectacular scenery, but often one meets other players who become friends. Special events like the prelude to this expansion and regular holiday events make every day of playing different.

This is the third major expansion for World of Warcraft. As with previous expansions the graphics have improved, new playable races have been added, and new areas of the world are available for questing. Unique to this expansion, major parts of the original two continents have changed. This change affects the lower level areas, adding new quests, removing older ones, changing locations of towns and camps, and significantly changing the topography of the world.

Deathwing, an ancient (and angry) dragon, has returned to Azeroth after having recuperated from a battle with the forces of Azeroth long ago. Being a bit peeved by this, he does a very nice job of tearing the lands of Azeroth apart. I am relatively certain that just before the next WoW expansion, the forces of Azeroth will have quieted this nasty dragon again. But we will have to wait and see.

Players returning after the sundering found a world changed. Cities have been modified, moved (a bit) and features added. Many smaller towns and camps have been destroyed; some moved, some are gone forever. Much of the world was altered as well. Giant trenches split the Barrens into two areas, the seas have moved flooding areas that were once dry, and new islands have risen from the sea. One major discontinuity for players happened the day after this attack. Returning, a player finds that the world has changed, and enough rebuilding has occurred that one feels he has slept for 100 years.

From the player's aspect, all this change is very welcome. Most dedicated players have leveled a variety of characters to great heights, a number of times. Many have grown tired of the same old quest series that must be accomplished to raise levels. What Blizzard has done is make the lower level areas new. They have added many new quests and altered the landscape in many ways. This coupled with changes in travel paths means there is a lot to explore. I just wish a bit of this had affected Outland as well.


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