The Burning Crusade Preview

Of course there is oodles of lore pertaining to each territory, explaining why it exists, who inhabits it and why certain races have a personal issue with said inhabitants, but I’m not going to delve too deep into all that here. Blizzard will be hosting an international “event” to celebrate the opening of the Dark Portal and the entry to Outland – obviously we’ll try to be there on the big day.

It was also very good to hear that Blizzard has split all the new dungeons into wings. This means that you can tackle a large dungeon a wing at a time, thus allowing you to commit smaller chunks of your time to the task as opposed to an entire evening/Saturday/Sunday. That’s not to say that the only new dungeons will be in Outland of course, since there will be new dungeons for high level characters scattered throughout the lands of WoW.

Difficulty levels can now also be set when embarking on a quest. A quest can be undertaken at Normal or Hard level. If a party embarks on a Level 60 quest at Normal difficulty, the players will encounter equivalent monsters, but if the same quest is undertaken at Hard difficulty, then the monsters will be a few rungs up the food chain. This will add an extra challenge for high level players, especially when they’re close to, or have achieved a Godlike Level 70 status.

Besides the extended levels and new continent, the biggest additions in Burning Crusade are the two new races – the Draenei and the Blood Elves. The Draenei represent the new addition to the Alliance, while the Blood Elves make camp with the Horde. There’s no love lost between the Draenei and the Blood Elves, especially since it was the Blood Elves who sabotaged the Draenei spaceship, causing it to crash land on Azeroth in the first place.

The Draenei homeland is the island where their spaceship crashed and the first quests you’ll encounter will involve collecting medical supplies to help your injured comrades. As you wander around the Draenei homeland, you’ll notice that the race has a definite affinity to crystals – the crashed spaceship looks to be almost entirely crystalline. The love for crystals ties in with another major new feature in Burning Crusade, Jewelcrafting, but more about that later.

The classes available to the Draenei are Warrior, Paladin, Hunter, Priest, Shaman and Mage. Whatever class you choose, the Draenei don’t look like a race you’d want to mess with. In fact if you had to pick a Draenei’s wallet out of a bag, you could be pretty certain that it would be the one with Bad Mother****er on it!

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