So, the game has been launched for a week. We’ve all had a chance to explore some of the earlier zones and scenarios. And I don’t know about anyone else but I already have some loves and hates. I’ve been finding myself drawn to the zones for my own race, and it’s not just because you are more likely to get drops for your race there (you are more likely to get drops for your own race in your own zones by the way). It’s because the storyline is telling me more background about the race I play, and that’s something I really enjoy.
I always regretted in WoW that once you were out of the starting zones, with their very different themes, that’s about all you get for race-specific quests. WAR isn’t like that at all. As I wander through High Elf lands, I’m constantly getting more background about the High Elves and their various regiments. I feel like I know my own character and her background better too.
This is a screenshot I took in the Shadowlands, which is my favourite zone so far. It’s a very dark zone (in colour palette as well as theme), and for me it has a strange stark beauty. Questing through it, you get the story very clearly of past tragedies and a race beset and struggling to fight back. There is also a strong theme to the zone and it’s quests of ‘How do you fight an enemy who has no scruples, without becoming as bad as they are?’ I’d love to see more of this kind of thoughtful storytelling — although I dunno if I really expect that of this game. It also has zombies, which I personally appreciate. Unlike boars, you can never have too many zombies in an MMO.
I find it a moody, gothic kind of fantasy zone which is far different in tone to most of the other High Elf areas which I have seen. I was sorry to leave it and move on to Ellyrion with its gaggle of NPCs who are obsessed with their pretty white ponies — I’m surprised none of the horses have sprouted wings or spoken yet. For a short period of time, High Elves were captivatingly cool and tragic.
Admittedly, now I have a pony of my own I am definitely appreciating their good points!