Step away from the Mechanostrider, lady!

Like a drunken adult trying to ride a child’s playground ‘springy’, I bring you this screenshot of my World of Warcraft character in full Frost Vrykul disguise sat on his (yes, the disguise changes your sex if you’re a fella) swift, green mechanostrider. Riding on mounts that are clearly waaaaay too small for you is one of the delights that await you in the new expansion, Wrath of the Lich King. The mount considered too tiny for anything but a Gnome or a Dwarf to ride is apparently strong enough to support the weight of a hulking, frozen warrior in full battle armour. It’s Gnome technology at it’s finest!
Frost Vrykul on a Swift Green Mechanostrider
You might be wondering, since WotLK came out almost a month ago, why beyond showing you this hilarious scene (seriously, my eyes were watering after seeing this giant zipping around on a tiny mechanostrider… but, hey, that’s just me) I’ve been strangely quiet on the expansion-related article front. The fact is, I’ve been playing WotLK during pretty much any free time I can muster. Work has been torture. Not the regular torture that it usually is but a special kind of torture you’d only wish upon your most successful friends.

Wrath of the Lich King is great fun. I’ve really been enjoying it. Of course, people are devouring the new content at a lightning speed and if that’s your thing, go at it. For everyone else, I’d recommend taking things at your own pace. Enjoy the sights, take in the lore and for God’s sake, read the damn quest instructions, you morons! Sorry… sorry. One of the returning plagues from the launch of The Burning Crusade (heck, even the start of World of Warcraft itself) is the dumbasses who think yelling out to everyone else in the area to give them a point-by-point breakdown of every step a quest entails is somehow quicker than simply reading four or so lines of text.

Still, before long you find yourself in the next area and well away from those knuckle-dragging bozos. People seem to be handling the change of scenery in WotLK a lot better than TBC and feel quite at home in the Dun Morogh-esque snowy landscapes it provides. The gap between end-game TBC player items and WotLK new greens seems to be less drastic than the first expansion, quietening some of the masses this time round though there are murmurs that Blizzard might have gone too far in the opposite direction – that people rarely find the quest rewards a worthwhile upgrade to anything they already had. What can I say – you can’t please everyone.

New game mechanics in the form of vehicles have been the occasional questing highlight while playing through the expansion and a new slew of recipes are sure to keep me and my alts busy (and financially secure) for a long time to come. I can’t say I’m too enthralled with the new Death Knight class. Some people are having a whale of a time, to be sure (and others are crying that they’re too over-powered), but for me the late 50s and very early 60s are a real drag for my alts so having a class dropped right at the foot of that particular mountain just doesn’t inspire. Maybe a month or two down the road I’ll have an itch for something different but in what roughly amounts to three levels of DK starter quests, I can’t muster the energy to put aside my main and embrace the traitorous DK lifestyle.

So WotLK is lovely and I’m looking forward to getting as much blood from this particular stone as I can, as is MMORPG tradition but looking ahead, I really think Blizzard have to step up their game and try to adhere to their statement of providing something close to one expansion a year. Two years is too long to wait, if you ask me. I have to wonder if the majority of WoW’s playerbase would wait another two years for the next one.

And of course, I can’t end an article mentioning drunken adults on a playground springy without linking to this webcomic from Cascade Failure.