Monday, April 15, 2024

We Want a Shrubbery

Although nobody is asking for my take on the Pandamonium limited event that Retail will be experiencing, I figured I'd drop in my two cents:

Pandamonium is a hedge by the WoW team.

It's not a shrubbery, it's a hedge!
From, but really from Monty Python.

What do I mean by that?

Well, it's pretty simple. The WoW Classic team is all in on Cataclysm Classic, but if it flops badly, there likely won't be a Mists of Pandaria Classic. 

Let's face it: Cataclysm Classic is as big of a risk as the original WoW Classic was in 2019. Blizzard wasn't entirely sure if people would show up to play an "official" Vanilla Classic server* back then, and by throwing out the "Original Trilogy" by moving all Wrath Classic servers to the now-current Azeroth (before phasing, I presume) there's no guarantee that enough players will show up and continue to play Cataclysm Classic to make a Mists Classic viable.

So, the easiest way to present the Mists expansion in a way that will guarantee people will go back and play the content is to create a limited time event with wildly accelerated leveling in Retail. Throw in a bunch of FOMO cosmetic items, and there you go.

There is a second reason for this Pandamonium event, and it is to drum up interest for a Mists Classic.** This is a taste of what Mists was like, since it is still set in the current Retail environment, so Blizzard is also hoping that Pandamonium will generate enough interest in Mists as an expansion to counter the pushback from the bean counters should Cata Classic flop.

And that's that. For those interested in the event, go have fun. Enjoy yourself, because that's why we play games, right?

*Hindsight is a real bitch here, because looking back it seemed obvious, but there was no guarantee that people who'd been playing on private servers would actually show up to play the "official" version, and there was also no guarantee that people like me would return just to play the pre-Cataclysm version of WoW. There's a very vocal part of the player base that looks down upon Classic and Classic players, and even those blowhards aside the fracturing of the player base was a big risk Blizzard took. 

**I don't think I need to go over my own opinion of Mists, so I'll save that for another time.)


  1. It does crack me up that we seem to be seeing almost the complete opposite here. 🙂 To me it's a sign that they might not be doing MoP Classic, to you it's a promotion for MoP Classic.

    1. By announcing Cataclysm Classic, the WoW Classic team crossed the Rubicon. At this point there's nothing stopping WoW Classic from going all the way to Legion, although what they'll do about Warlords will prove interesting.

    2. Well, the thing that I was thinking might stop them is the population of "rolling" Classic dropping too low and things like SoD seeming like a better way forward. The additional server merges for the Wrath servers certainly point that way for me.

  2. I have to write it up one of these days, but playing Cataclysm Classic in the beta has been great. I wish they'd flip the switch tomorrow. It was, as I can see now, my favorite era of the game besides WOD. Just so much fun to play. It is way more like Wrath Classic than any version you will find in the retail version. If you like Wrath Classic, I think you will like Cata Classic. Atheren