Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The lack of pigs in Northrend spoils me

My picture of Northrend was somewhat hazy before I entered it. I never made it into the beta and for some reason I haven’t been keen on reading about it and watching movies on beforehand. It wasn’t as if I avoided it un purpose, but I had enough of unfinished business in TBC to keep me occupied. I couldn’t put time and energy to explore the new game before it was there for real.

I only had two clear ideas about WotLK before it arrived:
1. I expected new landscapes, rather influenced by Scandinavia than by Africa. There would be ice and tundra and not so many jungles and deserts.

2. There would be pigs. A lot of them. I would be expected to kill them and turn in details from their bodies for xp. Perhaps the pigs would have a bit thicker fur to withstand the coldness. Perhaps we would cut out some other part this time – eyes or tongues instead of livers and snouts?

For some reason I had the idea that levelling would be rather tedious, a more or less monotonous sequence of barely disguised grinding sessions.

How wrong wasn’t I? Not about the landscape – as far as I have seen they’re quite much what I expected. But I was wrong about the pigs and the questing.

It had been so long since I levelled a main character, experiencing content for the first time that I had forgotten how fun it is. End game still is what I enjoy most and aim for, but the road to get there can be quite entertaining.

Up to now I’ve managed to get halfway to 74, questing my way first through Borean Tundra and currently in Howling Fjord. And what I’ve seen until now has been amazing. I haven’t encountered a single pig so far. The quests are far from repetitive – on the contrary, they’re varied and full of humour and surprises.

I’ve dressed up like a crazy murloc (try a few moves with it like jumping or dancing and I promise you’ll end up giggling). I’ve been flying all sorts of vehicles, including turning myself into a hawk. I’ve entered the spirit world and I’ve tortured people, which took my by surprise, but didn’t make me as upset as Rohan of Blessing of Kings.

Seeing all of this I’ve become a bit spoiled. Or at least I’ve got higher expectations than I used to have. Every quest now is like a little wrapped-up gift and even if I know that some of the quests still are in the genre “Kill 10 evil guys”, they still have some freshness in them and every now and then I know I’ll encounter one of those jewels that make me go: “Wow!”

So where does this leave the pigs? I think that the low areas in the old world really have lost their charm when you compare it to Northrend. It’s beyond my comprehension how anyone could go through the pain of killing pigs in Westfall or gnolls in Redridge in order to bring up another alt. I certainly know that I couldn’t.

It’s no wonder that they’re introducing the possibility to get alts ready to go at lvl 55. Blizzard wants to direct us to the newest and coolest content so that we’ll stay satisfied and not get tempted to try out some other MMO.

Are there any boars at all in Northrend, hiding in a corner? I don’t know. Perhaps the Vikings grilled them in a barbeque beach party. Anyway I certainly don’t miss them for a second.


Anonymous said...

I've definitely gained a lot more appreciation for Wrath in the last couple days. When I wrote my post about information overload, I think I had written it off a bit prematurely. You're absolutely right about the quests. They're definitely not more of the same.

But where the hell ARE those pigs? Hellfire Peninsula got the party started straight away. You couldn't fart without drawing aggro from a Hellboar. Like you, I assumed that Northrend would be a bacon fest as well. Apparently not.

Green Armadillo said...

I'm actually a bit disappointed in the lack of pigs. My level 70's have all made sure to ding 70 off of a felboar in Shadowmoon Valley in honor of the South Park episode, and now I can't continue the tradition for lack of any pigs in Northrend.

The sentiment, though, is definitely appreciated. :)

Dragon's Den said...

The pigs are disguised as rhinos and mammoths as they got such a bad press in BC

Gevlon said...

To bad for you being alliance. We HAVE pigs! *evil laughter*

Anonymous said...

@Devv: oh yes, entering Hellfire was a nightmare. Since I had never done amy endgame at 60, entering at 58 all in greens, I was a very little taste piece of meat for them. I remember the place as an endless number of corpse runs.

@Green Armadillo: well, I haven't seen everything yet, maybe they'll turn up in some far away corner.

@Dragon's den: for some reason I prefer killing rhinos and mammoths. It's silly since they're disguised as you say, bit it gives a false feeling of variation.

@Gevlon: really?!

Anonymous said...

Hey, you're following my thoughts of doing both starting zones! Except that I started Howling Fjord first and will soon start Borean Tundra.

Anonymous said...

@Loronar: to be really honest it's not my own idea. I've decided to follow Jame's levelling guide which tells me to first do BT and then HF. So far so good. Since I've done a couple of instances on the way I've just dinged 74 with a great part of HF left to do, and the quests have turned green. However I trust him and stay in the zone. After all that's my general experience, that levelling doing green and yellow quests rather than orange ones is more efficient. And it's an awesome zone that I really wouldn't like to miss.

I guess I'll end up with a lot of quests in the higher zones undone at 80, but then I can make them for gold, just the way we did with Netherstorm in TBC.