Wrath is depressing

*Puts on nostalgia hat*

I remember back when I was levelling through Outland for the first time. I had finally pushed through the last bits of the 50-58 level range which had nearly killed my interest in WoW. It was quite a hump for me. I was very happy when I hit Illidans domain, and that happiness only increased the more I played there. What was this magical place? With it’s crazy energy lanced sky and it’s wildly varying monsters and locales? From the arid blasted plains of Hellfire to the gorgeous Nagrand, I loved it all, it was so vibrant and amazing.

I remember snapping screenshot after screenshot of everything, my heart stopping terror and then amusement when I first got flattened by the Fel Reaver, my exuberance when I tanked my first new dungeon. I was completely hooked, and it just got worse when I reached max level, the first max level dungeon I did was crazy, I was so very very happy, though I was with good people. It always seemed like I was exploring some strange new locale, battling against demons and evil Blood Elves, infinite dragons and naga, I would go from place to place vanquishing these interesting new enemies, mastering their dungeons. It always seemed like there were chances for victory.

The storyline was fun, I’ve always been a fan of Illidan, and even though there were tangents that didn’t unite with the main story, Mount Hyjal, ZA, maybe perhaps Karazhan(though it was controlled by a demon, sooo..?) it all seemed to be one great piece, complete and wholesome. Compared to this, Wraths raids just seem to be a mish-mash of ideas, a great idea shattered into parts that don’t come together quite right. And that’s just it really, the crux of the issue in my mind, Wrath feels broken to me.

Now, keep in mind I love alot of the stuff they’ve done in Wrath, and it has had some of the best storylines and quests I have ever done in WoW. The wrathgate? Brilliant. Arugal in Grizzly Hills? Fun! Thorim questline? Epic. But it’s missing something, that spark that ties it all together. Maybe it’s the places that we’re playing in in Northrend.

  • Howling Fjord –  Good crisp zone with clear themes and a cool new enemy. (Vykrul)
  • Borean Tundra – As I thought before Wrath was released, boring, it’s a bloody tundra, I mean really.
  • Dragonblight – Big white emptiness with a desolate feel, not exactly the kind to embolden an adventurer.
  • Grizzly Hills – Great Music, SERIOUSLY, that music is so good. Pretty zone with some fun quests.
  • Sholazar Basin – What feels like a bad nagrand clone. Nagrand was otherwordly and majestic, Sholazar feels dark and oppressive.
  • Zul’Drak – Some fun quests here (Drakuru) but overall a dismal place of broken stone and a crushed people, who you don’t like anyway, because they’re dicks.
  • Storm Peaks – I like the Ulduar architecture and once again, Thorim quests were awesome, but it’s just snowy hills for the most parts, and ends up feeling wind swept and lonely.
  • Icecrown – Ahh the last zone of the xpac. I love the gunships, love them. Apart from that, it is once again a rather desolate zone filled with the types of undead you’ve seen time and time again.
  • Afterthought: Dalaran – Technically not a zone, but the main city. I hate this place, cramped and annoyingly laggy, it’s a marked downgrade from Shattrath, even though it’s more detailed. It feels like a model city, not a real one.

I know Northrend is kind of supposed to be like this, the frozen north and all that, but I just can’t like it compared to the stunning vistas of Outland. My surroundings dictate my moods and feelings about the game to an extent, and this place with it’s dark zones, dark storylines, dark armour, dark everything, just depresses me.

It always seems like we’re struggling without an end in sight, us against the endless armies of the scourge with despair as our only companion. That’s the mood they tried to evoke with the Northrend expansion, that of despair, of knowing you will be ground to dust by the encroaching ice and the unending unholy marching of a thousand risen corpses. Even the raids that are supposed to empower you drain your spirit, every victory is just a small setback for Arthas, every boss killed is one that was disposable to him. There is never a feeling of a definite win.

Make me happy to be an adventurer, fill my veins with courage to fight the enemies of our kin. Don’t leech my strength, don’t make me feel like I will never win.


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