Best Classic Video So Far

I just had to share this somewhere because I couldn't stop giggling throughout the entire thing.


Beta Hype

Just because I'm not playing the beta (and not planning to either) that doesn't mean that I'm not interested in hearing what other people have to say about their experiences with it. So far, reactions seem pretty positive. There are the ones who were super excited about it beforehand and are - unsurprisingly - super excited about it now, such as Nixxiom:

Then there are those who were vaguely optimistic about it beforehand and are now also super excited about it, such as Crendor:

(I also love how his first big beta adventure was to run his level 9 orc hunter halfway across the world just because he could, and because you don't get res sickness under level 10.)

And finally, there are those who figured that Classic probably wasn't going to be for them and were positively surprised, such as Jesse Cox:

I expect that we'll see a fair amount of grass roots hype building for Classic over the next few months. I don't think Blizzivision is going to invest much into marketing it beyond some basics such as social media shout-outs and inviting journalists to give it a try, but I think the success of Nostalrius has shown that there's a part of the Vanilla crowd that's both very loud and very passionate and basically willing to provide a lot of advertising for free.

And there's certainly interest too: Well-known streamer Asmongold hit over 100k live viewers streaming a Deadmines run for example. I expect the grousing of the "you think you do, but you don't" crowd will continue for a while, but I also suspect that a lot of people will still be curious enough to give the game a try at launch just because everyone's talking about it.

It's been about five years since we last had a major Western MMO launch (I'm thinking of ESO and Wildstar in 2014), and in these times of controversy about microtransactions and such, Classic is also going to stand out as launching with a pure subscription package with no add-ons. Could Blizzard be managing to capture the zeitgeist at just the right time a second time? I can't wait to find out.


We Have A Release Date!

27th of August... sort of, except that in the US it will still be the afternoon of the 26th.

I'm happy to say that this won't fall right into the middle of the family visit I was planning for summer - I have a bit of a bad track record of missing big MMO events that interest me due to being away, so I was a little worried that I might end up booking my flights just to find out that Classic launch would happen right in the middle of my trip, but fortunately I should now be back about a week beforehand.

In fact, I'll try to get at least a couple of days off for the launch as well. I hope that Blizzard has learned enough about organising this kind of launch for it to not be a disaster full of login queues and server crashes, but I'm willing to risk it in any case. The worst that can happen is that I end up having to play some other games while I wait for them to fix things, so it's a win either way!

I went right ahead and logged into my Battle.net account for the first time in years to tidy up my account info. Apparently the last time I gave them any money was in March 2010! (My brief visit during Mists of Pandaria took place with gifted game time.) I wonder how much of an uptick they are seeing in terms of old accounts being reactivated right now...

As an additional lure there is a chance that they'll let you join the Classic beta right away if you're a current subscriber, but I'm not falling for that one, marketing team! I'm not that keen on betas anyway, even if the thought of taking part in a starting zone stress test or something like that sounds somewhat entertaining. More importantly though, I don't want to give them any money until I can get my hands on the fully released game.

I've made some progress on the "what to play" front as well, as I've got two old friends committed to spending some time playing with me. They want to go Horde, and I thought we'd agreed to play a warrior/rogue/shaman trio, with me being the shaman, but now they are dithering again... I told them not to mess with the plan, but we'll see. If that Horde trio goes ahead with me filling the healer role, I might roll up a night elf hunter for some solo adventures on Alliance side, which would once again provide an interesting mix of old and new experiences.