More World of Warcraft expansions in the works

Blizzard's newest expansion isn't even released yet, but the company has unofficially revealed that two more expansions are already planned.

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The Mists of Pandaria expansion for World of Warcraft is still several months away. but Blizzard has revealed that there will be at least two more expansions beyond the panda-tastic adventure. I guess 100 would be a nice round number for the max character level.

Blizzard COO Paul Sams told CVG that "the lore creators" already have a framework for expansion five and that Chris Metzen, the company's head of creative development, has even pitched a plan for number six.

"I think Mists of Pandaria is going to breathe huge life into what I believe is the best MMO out there," Sams said. "I think the number of people we have playing and the level of enthusiasm they have for the game suggests that to be the case. This is the next of many ways in which we're going to grow and improve and evolve this game."

It will be interesting to see how Blizzard's subscriber numbers react to Pandaria. The number has dwindled from more than 12 million down to about 10.3 million in November and 10.2 million in their February financial report.

Contributing Editor
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From The Chatty
  • reply
    March 26, 2012 5:45 AM

    John Keefer posted a new article, More World of Warcraft expansions in the works.

    Blizzard's newest expansion isn't even released yet, but the company has unofficially revealed that two more expansions are already planned.

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 5:48 AM

      Weren't they supposed to be adding Hero Classes or some shit - Death Knight was the only one right?

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        March 26, 2012 5:50 AM

        They gave up on that plan.

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          March 26, 2012 6:41 AM

          I don't think they gave up on it, I just think they haven't come up with the right way to add the next one yet ...

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            March 26, 2012 6:44 AM

            Well, they've added Monk this time, so no bullshit levelling shortcut and hopefully not as overpowered at first (heh, yeah right)

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              March 26, 2012 1:25 PM

              Except the Monk isn't a Hero Class. It's just like all the others.

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              March 26, 2012 6:17 PM

              i think being forced to go from 1-85 (or probably 90 now) is a huge turn off for me.

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                March 27, 2012 12:06 AM

                Don't worry, when Pandaria comes out, they will probably make it so that you can grind up to level 30 in the first day, just by going on a long, preprogrammed gryphon-flight and blasting elite monsters from above by mashing the spacebar key. ;

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 6:52 AM

          Yea, eventually the DK became the same ole watered down shit as every other class.

          • reply
            March 26, 2012 8:03 AM

            If by "watered down" you actually mean "not incredibly overpowered (as was the case for the first few months after they were introduced), but still a very good class", then yes.

            A Hero Class in WoW means that you start at level 55 and are given a unique introductory experience. That's compelling enough.

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              March 26, 2012 9:56 AM

              Well, to be fair, in a bit of irony, I think the paladin was far more op at the arrival of the death knight, lol.

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                March 26, 2012 10:05 AM

                At what, exactly? DKs were initially the undisputed kings of PvE DPS, tanking, PVP (as shadowfrost spec) and solo leveling. What's left?

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                  March 26, 2012 10:17 AM

                  seriously, playing a launch DK was glorious!

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                  March 26, 2012 10:20 AM

                  You are telling me you have forgotten things like ret palliy running such a rape train they needed a hotfix? DKs were op at tanking sarth until they nurfed some of the spell mitigation. It all evened out after the first tier.

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                    March 26, 2012 11:08 AM

                    Ahh two hand tanking all the way to 70,ret was so grossly overpowered I would hold incredibly aggro and lead in dps. PVP was ridiculous and than it got nerfed back to the stoneage.. Ret was not very good in Vanilla wow.

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 7:47 AM

        Hero classes were a failed idea...

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 8:21 AM

        There were supposed to be like 8 hero classes.. When vanilla launched.

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        March 26, 2012 8:47 AM

        Pretty disappointing they aren't adding one in Pandaria. I feel like as they keep increasing the level cap, the less likely people are to level from 1 to max. 90 is a pretty intimidating number for starting out from.

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          March 26, 2012 8:48 AM

          They've accelerated the 1-80 game so much, though, even without all of the heirlooms.

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      March 26, 2012 6:46 AM

      LEVEL 10000!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! *sigh*

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      March 26, 2012 7:04 AM

      I think they said back during TBC or Wraith they had plans for expansions/content up to level 100, so... yeah, that makes sense.

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      March 26, 2012 7:56 AM

      BC was the high point of WoW overall. Everyone seemed to enjoy exploring the new continent, and you got the combo of things still being fresh and then all the new stuff. It was also made before they changed their design process for expansions, which they did for WLK.

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        March 26, 2012 8:05 AM

        That's like just your opinion man. BC was fucking awful. Vanilla was the high point.

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        March 26, 2012 8:15 AM

        I loved TBC, lovely continent, cool story stuff, and the new raids were stunning, varied, challenging crazy hard sometimes, but still great stuff

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        March 26, 2012 8:22 AM

        I actually think BC is as far in WoW's lifetime as people are willing to go because they still need some old-school cred.

        vanilla was a thankless grind. I think that, although WotlK was pretty easy, it was the best expansion.

        Catacysm's t11 was quite well-designed, I think. But it's not cool to like any of cata's content. Plus t12 took too long to come out, which soured a lot of ppls take on t11.

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          March 26, 2012 8:26 AM

          TBC was where they started to abandon the thankless grind, and really figure out gear progression & whatnot. The initial release, however, was just painful.

          Farming ~eight hours per hour of raiding because you needed two dozen consumables sucked ass.

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            March 26, 2012 8:31 AM

            I didn't play during BC, and came in towards the end of WotlK. I like Wrath best because the art style and atmosphere were just fantastic. The setting of ICC was just so epic, and the final battle against the LK was one of my favorite fights in the game.

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              March 26, 2012 9:49 AM

              The look and feel of Northrend was definitely awesome, they nailed that. The problem was that it was attached to a gameplay model where they decided that everything had to be super fucking easy so that everybody could "enjoy everything" regardless of whether they were capable of playing video games. Odd as it sounds, I didn't necessarily mind leveling new characters back in Classic, because the game world was threatening enough that it FELT LIKE A GAME. In Wrath, leveling a character was just like, "oh, here's another 50 hours that I have to spend on something trivial so that I can participate in end game stuff".

              I don't know, I wasn't a big fan of raiding back in Classic or even TBC, but I liked the outdoor world a lot better. Feels so empty if there's not really anything of consequence in it. Just an over engineered gameplay experience that feels like Disney World. Honestly, in terms of gameplay experience, single player games can do and are doing Disney World a lot better.

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            March 26, 2012 8:52 AM

            TBC still had some ugly grinding elements going on.. but it was a step in the right direction.

            Unless you were serious about crafting. Then grinding was your middle name.

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              March 26, 2012 8:53 AM

              Man I wish they still did those "tiered" crafting items like they tried in TBC. Those were pretty interesting.

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                March 26, 2012 10:00 AM

                The specific crafting drops in each instance felt like a nice progressive reward. The tier 5 mace comes to mind. They sort of did this with shadowmourne, but legendaries can be a bit too exclusive.

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              March 26, 2012 8:53 AM

              The whole gated progression-thing basically killed any lower-tier guilds. As soon as they got through one tier, the higher level guilds would snatch up all of their tanks/healers.

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                March 26, 2012 8:57 AM

                Kind of like back in vanilla when a key to UBRS was a golden ticket into any guild..

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                  March 26, 2012 9:00 AM

                  seal of ascension

                  oh the memories.

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                    March 26, 2012 9:05 AM

                    As a mage who had that very early in the game, I can't even imagine how much gold I made opening shit for people. I kept my hearth in Kargath forever for that very purpose.

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                March 26, 2012 10:04 AM

                I think you mean attunement? As far as the "gated" in term of having to kill gruel/mags then Kael/vashj, it did suck wiping on those fights with not having access to the next tier. I think that lead to a lot of stalling out in progress and people leaving to join guilds who were over the hump.

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              March 26, 2012 11:46 AM

              They really need to fix endgame crafting. Having to grind mats in endgame raids in order to make anything just doesn't make sense. By the time you have the mats, odds are pretty good that you have equal or better gear.

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          March 26, 2012 2:23 PM

          I liked WOTLK best i think

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        March 26, 2012 10:39 AM

        I fucking hated BC. There... I said it

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        March 26, 2012 1:14 PM

        Wrath had tons of flaws I admit but it's still by far the best in my opinion. Felt more like a coherent story then a collection of zones better then any mmo I can think of.

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        March 26, 2012 1:47 PM

        Vanilla and TBC we're the best parts of the game. The only part I ever completely missed out on was killing C'thun and Kil'Jaeden.

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        March 26, 2012 3:58 PM

        BC has some crazy interesting zones to level in. WOTLK was just more of the same. Cata was a bit generic as well except for vashj.

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 8:19 AM

      I guess the kung fu panda expansion makes people clamor for more

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 8:39 AM

        One might think this joke would get old, but here it is again, and it is still retarded.

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 8:21 AM

      Weren't they going to cover the Emerald Dream back in 2005?

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        March 26, 2012 8:24 AM

        I remember screen shots, but I think they were fake.

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        March 26, 2012 8:40 AM

        The Emerald Dream expansion would have been epic instead of yet another lost isle with a race no one has hardly seen before. There is still lore from Warcraft 1-3 games they haven't completely resolved. I personally liked TBC and WOTLK specifically because of the tie-ins.

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          March 26, 2012 8:44 AM

          I just don't know what they could really do with the ED. I mean, lore-wise it's just a copy of Azeroth without the contributions/destructions/whatever from the races. So... it'd be vanilla WoW with Icecrown (without the Frozen Throne) and no Maelstrom, and no buildings or ruins. Also, and I may be thinking wrong, but I think only Druids can enter the ED.

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            March 26, 2012 8:49 AM

            Druids can enter it by dreaming. Every one else can get there by magic or portals.

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          March 26, 2012 8:45 AM

          They resolved that storyline in the Stormrage book. Also who knows wtf is going on with the Emerald Dream now that Ysera is mortal

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            March 26, 2012 10:07 AM

            Well, I don't think they fully resolved it. I want to say there were some hints at deathwing. But your last point is a pretty big factor. I think they have closed it off unless they come up with something entirely new. Also, it's god damn sad they decided to do it in a book rather than in game...

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 8:25 AM

      So, will this whole thing end with having to defeat Sargeras? He's like the ultimate force in the game right?

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        March 26, 2012 9:22 AM

        in the universe from what I remember

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        March 26, 2012 10:09 AM

        Yes, but kiljaden is still out there as well (he was only sealed off) I am pretty sure there have been hints that the legion will return.

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        March 26, 2012 4:29 PM

        i think its supposed to be the tentacle guys (like C'Thun) as the big bad of the universe

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 8:59 AM

      Just die already WoW....

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 9:01 AM

        Don't play it. TADA., problem solved

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          March 26, 2012 6:15 PM

          It's hard to not play it when tons of other games are trying to imitate it, or parts of it.

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 9:04 AM

        Still 10.2m paying subscribers as of the last financial call.

        Not going anywhere any time soon.

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      March 26, 2012 9:15 AM

      The number has dwindled from more than 11 million down to about 10.3 million in November.

      REALLY ?! going from 11MILLION to 10.3MILLION is dwindling ?? I'm so tired of this angle from people. "wow is struggling to keep it's clients, people are upset, they're all going to leave to the next big MMO X Y or Z, wow is dying."

      if wow is dying, it's the healthiest death ever observed by humanity.

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 9:23 AM

        Hey, it dwindled down to 10.2 million in February!

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 9:57 AM

          a downward spiral of economic disaster!

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 9:24 AM

        dwindling is an accurate term. you're projecting way beyond what that factual statement is actually saying

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          March 26, 2012 9:27 AM

          Accurate by definition or not, the connotation doesn't fit. Just like the people claiming SWTOR is on track to eclipse WoW.

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            March 26, 2012 9:29 AM

            "dwindle" implies a very gradual decline; i don't see a problem with what the article says. the people saying SWTOR is on track to eclipse WoW are wrong in a much more obvious way; that isn't a minor subtlety or connotation.

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              March 26, 2012 9:32 AM

              The term is almost always used when describing something effectively on life support. Using it in conjunction with the industry leader that still eclipses its competition by a factor of five seems off, regardless of its definition.

              The SWTOR logic goes like this -- it took WoW ~2 years to hit 2 mil, and SWTOR hit that number in 2 months. Therefore, it's on track to beat WoW. Ignore the fact that the mmo market has changed, substantially, since WoW's release, and 80% of the servers are fucking ghost towns because SWTOR has about the same number of servers with less than a fifth of the population.

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                March 26, 2012 9:53 AM

                i'm not really sure why you're telling me this SWTOR stuff; you're the one that brought it up and it doesn't appear to have anything to do with this subthread.

                i don't agree that "dwindle" is almost always used when describing something that's on life support. i think you and Disarray are being a little oversensitive to a statement that doesn't imply what you're saying it implies

                • reply
                  March 26, 2012 10:03 AM

                  I'm actually confusing this with the GW2 discussion a bit. A few of those articles painted a picture that WoW's collapse has left a giant hole in the mmo market that GW2 is slated to take over.

                  My point with the SWTOR stuff is people are using specific rhetoric to paint an unrealized picture of the current mmo market. They've been doing this for the past couple years, largely because people like to see giants fall.

                  This site does the same shit. The article it's links puts the term subscribers in quotes, even though their definition of subscriber is consistent -- people who have paid Blizzard money in the past month to play WoW. There's too much ridiculous sensationalism in gaming journalism, imo, and this site is no different.

                  • reply
                    March 26, 2012 10:06 AM

                    If it was down like, 2 or 3 million subscribers I would consider that a giant hole to fill, 700,000 is ok, but nothing to be particularly proud about.

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                      March 26, 2012 10:10 AM

                      I think it's down ~2.5 mil worldwide since its peak.

                      The "worldwide" is what makes it tricky, since different regions have different release schedules and are on different versions of the game.

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                        March 26, 2012 10:25 AM

                        True, American numbers are such a weird metric nowadays.

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                          March 26, 2012 10:33 AM

                          ...

                          The reason "worldwide" is important is because each individual region is going to spike for 1-3 months around a major release. If you stack up releases in the same 1-3 month timeframe, then you're likely going to hit a peak in your worldwide statistic but that peak is going to be followed by a decline back down to your baseline (routine) numbers. If you space those releases out, then the subscriber profile will look like it has a higher baseline subscriber count, because there's always a region or two at or near its peak.

                          You're always going to have a decent sized group of transients. My only point is sufficient information isn't available to estimate the per-region transient vs. stable population to determine an accurate picture of what's going on.

                          • reply
                            March 26, 2012 10:44 AM

                            Yeah, there is definitely value in that, I just find that American numbers aren't as good an indicator as they used to be for world wide entertainment consumption trends. (particularly with movies, but also more and more for game releases and subscription based content).

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                March 26, 2012 10:08 AM

                Dwindle refers to an gradual decline. I disagree with your assertion that it implies life support. I have never used it to imply that. 10.2 million subscribers is far from life support, although I wish there was a way to accurately find the number of ACTIVE players.

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                  March 26, 2012 11:43 AM

                  I actually didn't know that. In my mind dwindle has always meant "on the verge of disappearing entirely".

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                  March 26, 2012 3:44 PM

                  dwin·dle/ˈdwindl/
                  Verb: Diminish gradually in size, amount, or strength: "dwindling resources".
                  Synonyms: diminish - wane - decrease - lessen - decline - abate

              • reply
                March 26, 2012 1:01 PM

                Dwindle is a gradual decrease or lessening? Sort of like saunter!

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            March 26, 2012 9:56 AM

            would "slowly dwindled" help the misguided preconception?

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              March 26, 2012 12:50 PM

              "slowly dwindled at a gradual snail's pace, unhurriedly"

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 9:59 AM

        SELL SELL SELL!

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        March 26, 2012 10:09 AM

        [deleted]

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        March 26, 2012 10:10 AM

        Yeah, sounds more like a plummet.

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          March 26, 2012 10:37 AM

          It's obviously skyrocketing down, right?!

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 10:13 AM

        I really wish this thread was about how WoW's numbers are just about decimated!

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        March 26, 2012 10:14 AM

        I agree it's not a huge number or anywhere close to a mass exodus that people call it. But, that is still a substantial amount of income loss to blizz. Who knows what their operating cost/overhead or profit margin is (they likely still print money). That lost revenue adds several million dollars per month and shouldn't be taken lightly.

        • Zek
          reply
          March 26, 2012 11:41 AM

          WoW has an impossibly long way to fall before it's no longer profitable. As the infrastructure demands diminish they can just gradually transition resources and people away from the game(or do layoffs) to cut costs.

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            March 26, 2012 11:57 AM

            probably when they start to merge realms would be a good sign that they're starting to feel the loss in subscribers. they also added alot of ways to make money off existing subscribers, like real money from pets, mounts, realm transfers, renaming, faction/race changes, etc.

            • reply
              March 26, 2012 12:10 PM

              Merging realms needs to stop being a symbol of a game dying, and something companies do proactively to guarantee healthy servers.

              The current attitude hurts more games than it helps.

              • Zek
                reply
                March 26, 2012 12:28 PM

                Yep, merging realms is a sign that the population is shrinking, but an MMO can continue to be profitable even off of very small subscription numbers, and it will take a very long time for WoW's numbers to come back down to earth. Besides, from the player's perspective, the only thing that matters is that there's at least one healthy server to play on.

                • reply
                  March 26, 2012 1:41 PM

                  I wonder if they will do something creative to avoid the negative appearance of merging. I could seem them doing something like a phase in swotor and merging all servers on a battle group. Swapping phases would just be an xfer since they've automated that to 5min process anyway. Improvements could make it take a few seconds and I am sure they will give it some goofy cool down. I can just see them doing something like this. However, they make a lot of money from xfers and that would be a hit to give up.

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 10:32 AM

      AFTER 10 YEARS WE FINALLY GET PANDAS !!!!! Glad I quit 2 years ago hahahahahaha

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 11:29 AM

        hahahahaha

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 11:34 AM

        lololololololol

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        March 26, 2012 11:34 AM

        INORITE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LFG PANDAZ!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! hahahahahaha

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 11:34 AM

        Game. Set. Match.

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        March 26, 2012 11:41 AM

        IKR JFC HOW LONG ARE WE SUPPOSED TO WAIT? PAAAAAAAAAANDAS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1111

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 11:58 AM

        lulululululull

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 12:18 PM

        HAHAHA LMFAO!!! I GIVE THIS JOKE A 10/10 AND FIVE STARS

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 12:35 PM

        You can never get enough of people making fun of pandas.

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 12:40 PM

        hehehehehehehe

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 12:56 PM

        Your move Blizzard.

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 1:17 PM

        This comment really blew us away. Epic! 10/10

        -IGN.com

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 1:44 PM

          Your post wasn't labeled with enough pandas in the background to be a legit ign post.

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 1:28 PM

        headshot

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 1:28 PM

        eucalyptus.txt

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 1:53 PM

          Actually a Koala bear would have made a better race.

          • reply
            March 26, 2012 1:53 PM

            Seriously.

          • reply
            March 26, 2012 2:20 PM

            They could have been a race of scientists, because you know they would totally look like scientists if they were dressed in a lab coat, wearing glasses.

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            March 26, 2012 3:58 PM

            At least they fucking reproduce

            • reply
              March 26, 2012 4:08 PM

              Which makes them totally nonviable as a WoW player's avatar.

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 2:14 PM

          bamboo you asshole

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 2:12 PM

        hahahahahhahah lolololololololololololololololol

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 2:13 PM

        My grandfather was a panda you insensitive fucker

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 3:00 PM

        BAHAHAH! what are we laughing at here?

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 3:01 PM

          He ended his post with "hahahahahaha". If that is not laugh-inducing, I don't know what is.

          • reply
            March 26, 2012 3:46 PM

            Ill tell you what is laugh inducing, DANE COOK!

            SUPER FINGER!

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 3:35 PM

        Dropping WoW and moving to Tera Online because... oh.

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 3:45 PM

          Tera Bad Online

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 4:14 PM

          what mmo's are you currently playing and which ones are you interested in?

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            March 26, 2012 5:20 PM

            I'm infrequently playing WoW and SWTOR and I played Tera last weekend during the beta. I'm undecided about Tera at this point. I'm looking forward to Planetside 2 and World of Darkness and I'll likely play Mists of Pandaria for a little while.

      • reply
        March 26, 2012 4:12 PM

        More like World of Warcrap hahahahahahahahaha

        • reply
          March 26, 2012 4:28 PM

          You should have gone with World of Warcarp. :(

      • reply
        March 29, 2012 3:15 PM

        LOL WATS NEXT, COWS?

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 4:22 PM

      I think it was pretty obvious when the game first came out, that an expansion to hit level 100, was just a matter of time.

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        March 26, 2012 4:47 PM

        I really like the way Rift has done their endgame. You hit 50, but there's still tons of room to continue gaining xp and using it to get incrementally stronger. I'm not sure if they have plans for a "proper"expansion at some point though.

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          March 27, 2012 7:27 AM

          Rift helped me kick my WoW habit for awhile.

    • reply
      March 26, 2012 6:12 PM

      ill prob check them all out

    • reply
      March 27, 2012 9:02 AM

      WARLOCKS CAN TANK!?!?! WAAAAAAY COOL! I know there was like two or three fights in BC where you needed a Warlock to tank, but to make them an actual tank is pretty badass.

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