So I’m a little bit late on this considering it was over Friday and Saturday but yeah, I caved and bought a Blizzcon ticket. *pets Grommloc* And just wanted to give a quick journal on my thoughts considering this was my first Blizzcon. Obviously I’d have loved to be there in person but I have a wedding to save up for and I’m not getting on a plane for 10 hours for 2 days of walking around. I’ve been to conventions before, when Nerds gather together in large numbers, the heat we generate could power a city.
So yeah, this is gonna be a review of the virtual ticket experience. So first things first, Blizzard…get a better streamer..seriously. The quality of the stream kept taking a nosedive at random, cut out at random and I had to keep refreshing the page to get it back. It’s not a big deal but it was definitely an annoyance.
So the opening ceremony did it’s job at getting me hyped to Hell, especially considering Warlords of Draenor goes live in a couple days. The Hearthstone Goblins vs. Gnomes expansion looks great although if I’m honest I was hoping for another Hearthstone Adventure like Naxxramas. I dunno, maybe Blackwing Lair or Ahn’Quiraj.
The big news of course is Blizzard launching a brand new IP; Overwatch and I’m sure my first thoughts upon seeing the trailer and game footage were the same as many others; “Wait, is Blizzard making a movie about superheroes? It looks cool but it’s an odd turn. Oh! It’s a game….it’s Team Fortress 2 =/” But after watching the Overwatch Overview panel I’ve got a lot more confidence in Overwatch and if I’m honest I can’t wait for this game, it genuinely looks like something that could -replace- TF2 for me. Just the manoeuvrability of the characters, the sweet powers and ways you can manipulate the match and other players with them, like Tracer’s Blink, Bomb, Recall combo just make it look sooo much fun. If you dunno what I’m talking about check out the trailers, it looks great.
Most of the stuff on WoW itself and Diablo though was..it was interesting to watch but I’m a huge fan of all that Behind the Scenes stuff. On the surface though, there wasn’t really any new information about either game, save for the fact that there’s a few new Treasure Goblins being added to Diablo. It’s a nice touch but not a huge deal. I was hoping for like, the next expansion after Reaper of Souls or something.
Now the Warcraft movie panel, left me for the first time…ever, really excited for a Video Game adaptation movie. Anyone who plays game knows the completely abysmal record for movie adaptations. When the best we’ve got in terms of accuracy are Mortal Kombat and Silent Hill, you know we’re in a bad place. But the panel got me honestly excited for the movie and quelled a lot of anxiety I had towards it. I got to see a few cast members and hear a bit about the story being based on Warcraft 1, which I always thought it should be that instead of Warcraft 3 or WoW itself and it sounds like it’s gonna kick ass.
That said there was something that seriously pissed me off; There was a viewing of some clips and a teaser from the movie that was not available to virtual ticket holders, you had to physically be there to see it and that’s bullshit, it’s nothing more then teasing us and it’s just rubbing it in that some of us couldn’t make it to Blizzcon because there were several other panels that weren’t on the virtual ticket too, like the voice actors panel.
But I digress, the movie itself is sounding great so just keep praying
. Moving on, Heroes of the Storm, while I haven’t gotten to play it myself I do want to, it looks great, I love the aesthetic environments and character designs. There were a couple new battlegrounds announced, a few panels going over the character building process and sound design so I enjoyed those and of course a few new characters announced, Jaina Proudmoore, Thrall and Sylvanas Windrunner. I do wonder with the over abundance of WoW characters if there’s a bunch of Starcraft and Diablo characters waiting to be announced to balance things out. Also announced as playable was the Lost Vikings and when asked about bringing the Vikings back, there was a mention of “Older Blizzard properties” including Blackthorne so we might be getting him as a future hero.
The three big tournaments were, obviously, World of Warcraft PVP Championships, Hearthstone’s first ever World Championship and the Starcraft 2 Global Finals. Now I haven’t watched the Starcraft finals yet but the Hearthstone championships were..not exciting but very interesting. Watching Hearthstone is a lot like watching Chess games, both players looking stone faced as you just watch their every move, enjoying the spectacle of an expert strategy being played out. Btw congrats to Firebat, it seemed like he was one of the players with very little hype behind him and he just bulldozed his way to the Championship.
The WoW championship however….Okay look, I’m not a sports fan. You put the Football World Cup or the Super Bowl in front of me and I’ll fall asleep, I just can’t care about it…with the WoW matches..I may or may not have found myself yelling at my computer monitor more then once..<<..>>..
The matches were really exciting and so many times a player would take a huge amount of damage, only to duck behind a pillar and get a heal on them, it got so tense a lot of the time.
It was cool getting to see a Live Raid on day 2 of some new content in WoD, and making it a race between a top Horde Guild and top Alliance Guild didn’t hurt either…*cough*FortheHorde*cough*
I really wasn’t sure what to expect from the Looking for Group documentary but really it was kinda emotional, all things considered. Taking into account this movie covers 2 decades of work put into a franchise that has become synonymous with the term MMORPG and Video Games in general and affected so many people in such a profound way. I know it might sound sad but this documentary really shows how World of Warcraft can be more then a money draining video game to people, including myself. (Also points for the many cameos, extra for getting Oxhorn)
So that’s the bulk of both days content, and to wind off both days we had the contests on Friday and a bigass Concert on Saturday.
The contests was mostly bands and one dance group, a movie contest and an art competition. All the entries were awesome, I loved the Sore Loser movie, though I’m probably biased towards Machinema
But if I’m honest my favourite entry in the entire competition was a song called Dropship by Recap. It’s like a rock/rap song about Starcraft 2...considering I don’t even play Starcraft 2 (Always meant to, just never got round to it, plus I suck at RTS) and I’m not a fan of Rap…that should tell you something about how well these guys did. Here’s a link to check it out yourselves; www.youtube.com/watch?v=ReSOOD…
And the costume competition was a lot of fun, I’ve got nothing but respect and admiration for people who make cosplay costumes, some of the ones seen here were insanely detailed. It’s unfortunate that the first place winner was unable to get on stage and show off her costume as from what I heard, she’d slipped and fallen, spraining her ankle and breaking her costume. I’ve seen some photos of it from earlier in the day and it does look amazing.
And to round out the entire convention was 2 and a half hours of rock!
First we got a concert by ETC, something I’d been looking forward to seeing all year, and we got 2 new songs, one of which being an Alliance anthem to go alongside Power of the Horde. (Wonder if they’ll be playing them both at Darkmoon Faire now) And then of course, the grand finale, Metallica! It was amazing and I imagine that alone justified the price of the ticket to a lot of people. The entire concert was incredible and would’ve been a perfect end to the event if not for one teeny thing….My house had a power cut halfway through -_-; And I didn’t get power back til the next day. Soo…thank God for the Archived video playback.
Which brings me to my biggest issue and overall thoughts on Blizzcon. Overall Blizzcon 2014 was good, I really enjoyed it, I was able to get into the excitement and feed my Nerdiness. However I get the feeling like there was way more hype over some events then deserved, like the panel that did nothing but explain all the stat and class changes done in Patch 6.0.2 for WoW, or the one that was mostly just saying “Remember how shit Diablo 3 was at launch? Good job we fixed all that for Reaper of Souls, amirite?” The biggest complaint I heard about this Blizzcon was how little new information there was for WoW and Diablo and…yeah, I’ve gotta agree. Like I said, I enjoyed the Hell out of this Blizzcon but remember; this is my FIRST Blizzcon, I was going to enjoy it anyway. I get the impression past years were overall better.
That said, my biggest problem is that I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t feeling a twinge of Buyers Remorse. I spent money for a virtual ticket to view this event and see everything there was to see and at least for me, I feel like the whole virtual ticket experience was a little backhanded, like I was being given stuff but also missing some stuff because “Hey, it’s your own fault. You should’ve come here in person.” And all the events I PAID to see are now all up on Youtube to be viewed for free, which I always knew would happen, it’s the internet but most of the events are uploaded on Blizzards own Youtube channels. That feels like a serious slap in the face right there. What was even the point of me buying the ticket then? The ingame pets, transmogs and stuff were a nice exclusive but they shouldn’t be the main reason for paying, y’know?
Anywho, I know this is a really long entry, I meant to just write a couple paragraphs but there was just more and more I wanted to talk about
So yeah, thanks for putting up with my ranting and to those of you who play WoW, I will see you on Draenor!