|Release: December 7, 2010|
|Players: 1 (MMO)|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Blood and Gore, Crude Humor, Mild Language, Suggestive Themes, Use of Alcohol, Violence|
The next stage is the early game content, which takes place at a goblin home base of sorts. I have to say that it didn't draw me in at first. The first several missions help you learn the ropes, but they're hardly compelling. I ran a few errands, killed a few small creatures, and drove my car for the first time. That car, by the way, handles terribly; you can actually turn it from side to side while it's not moving. I didn't expect top-notch vehicle handling from a fantasy MMO, but this was just ridiculous.
Also, I think these early moments would have benefited from a little more story. Aside from a brief opening cinematic, all I really knew was that I controlled a funny-looking green guy, had a minion named Bizfip (if any explanation was given for his presence, I didn't catch it), and was expected to do things for the people with the exclamation points over their heads. Perhaps knowing why I was doing these quests might have made the mundane tasks feel more purposeful.
Another obstacle that total newbies will face is that while Blizzard has made efforts to make Cataclysm user-friendly, you'll still have to learn a lot by trial and error. During my first few quests, I was almost constantly confused as to where to go next (annoyingly, your goals aren't marked precisely on the mini-map), how to perform the steps of the quest, and how people even play this game with its awful camera (Pro Tip: click and drag the screen to change the view). Especially frustrating was that my character could not equip many of the items I earned from doing quests. It may simply be the case that any MMO will take some getting used to, but newcomers should realize they'll be disoriented for a couple of hours.
WoW will feel unnatural to newcomers in smaller ways, too. One is that it seems claustrophobic. There are always lots of other people running around, even when they don't affect your gameplay. Also, if you die too much, the game starts forcing you to wait to respawn. I understand that the MMO format makes it difficult for developers to handle death, but I cannot imagine anything more obnoxious than being forced to sit there, doing nothing, just so the game can punish me.