An Ex-Gnome Tank's World

You can never go back

August 22nd, 2009 Posted in Cataclysm

If you read the below post on the futility of refresing the Onyxia raid, you might be surprised to learn that, having read the MMO-Champion spoilers a couple of weeks back, I was looking forward to the announcement of the next expansion, and more than that, hoping that it was true.

So, armed with a load of beers,¬†¬†various in and out-of-game chat channels, my guild, and the Blizzcon stream, I spent Friday night watching Cataclysm unfold. And I wasn’t disappointed. Of course, the proof will be when we actually come to play it in the future, but… Wow. I’m all about the storytelling, and that’s quite some story, and I was to find out what happens next.

More interesting, of course, are the incoming changes. No more Defense rating? Interesting. How the itemisation on our (current) gear will change to reflect that is anybody’s guess. Split between dodge, parry and block? The not-unexcpected change to block making it a real mitigation stat is very welcome, too.

But the real meat of the announcement – the sundering! The world will change in ways that we don’t yet understand, left in a state that will take quite some getting used to. More importantly, though, the content that we’ve levelled up on so far will be all but gone.¬† We’ve had hints of this before – the return of King Wrynn, the blood elves and draenei appearing in the world – but this is bigger than all of them.

It’s somewhat disappointing that much of what we’ve seen before is going to change. From what I’ve seen, Astranaar will be gone. Southshore will be gone. Orgrimmar will change completely, as will all the capital cities. I’ve heard it said by some that they’re disappointed, that they’ll never be able to play through the same content they did when they were first levelling up. This is true, but it’s also flawed.

For me, the memories of early WoW include that first epic journey from Darnassus all the way to Stormwind as my rogue was told to report to SI7. Walking from Elwynn forest into Westfall, Sentinel Hill appearing in the distance. The elite orc ambushers on the road above Lakeshire. Even when you repeat the content with new characters, it isn’t the same. Some epic moments from the early days are already gone forever – Bolvar’s confrontation with Onyxia, played out in the Stormwind Throne Room, has had its time, and is now only a distant memory.

So, however much the world has stayed the same over the last few years, some things will always change. The content may be gone, but seeing it for a second time is never as exciting or enthralling as the first.

You can never go back.

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