Apologies for butchering the Pokémon catchphrase but this latest announcement by Blizzard Entertainment for the upcoming World of Warcraft expansion – ‘Wrath of the Lich King’, just puts me in mind of Nintendo’s obsessive collect-’em-up title.
I thought the hook was already buried deep within my cheek in regards to announced features for the expansion. Extensive new content? Yay! I want me some of that. Raise the level cap? Mmm-mmm! Loving that progression. Then they did it… They appealed to the brainless grinder in me. They announced their Achievements system.
Basically they’re borrowing the system Microsoft have made popular with their XBox Live ‘experience’, and bolting it into the perfect casing for such a devious set of enticements – a Massively Multiplayer Online game. With it they’ll be awarding points for completing various chores and attaining specific conditions (from the bizarre; getting your hair cut in a new WotLK barbershop… to the obsessive; raising your reputation with 40 factions to ‘Exalted’).
And what do points make? Prizes! (sorry, Brucie). And by prizes, I mean some fairly innocuous little rewards in the shape of titles, vanity pets and tabards. “More pets?” I hear you scream, “But I’ve got pets coming out of my ears! I can’t possibly devote yet more bank space to all these cute little critters!”. Worry not, that’s where Blizzard’s announcement comes in (you did click the link before, right?).
Blizzard CM, Wryxian, revealed that in WotLK, players won’t need to forever juggle bag & bank space due to their insane need to collect each and every mount and vanity pet in the game. You’ll simply ‘learn’ the pet/mount as you would a spell and it’ll appear in a new tab in your character info window to be called up whenever desired. Cool huh? Yeah. That’s me tied up until the expansion after WotLK comes out desperately trying to catch ’em all, too.
ps. Almost forgot to mention – if you are planning on expanding your critter collection to near-legendary status, the website with all the information you could ever want is ‘WarcraftPets.com’. Consider it a to-do list as well as a how-to guide.