World of Warcraft: Contemplating WoW Classic plans

One of my idle daydream scenarios is to imagine what I would do if I was thrown back in time with current knowledge to play MMOs of years past. If it was November 2004, what would I do in World of Warcraft? Other than not being able to log on for weeks at a time, of course. Would I be able to tolerate that era? Would there be sufficiently unmined content that I could keep myself occupied and amused in a pre-expansion game?

Well, now that hypothetical is not so much one any more. While we’re not going to get sent back in time and experience the WoW phenomenon and culture as it developed, World of Warcraft Classic is set to deliver the MMO as it was. And while we don’t know the specifics of what it will entail, our knowledge of the past means that we can take educated guesses about what will be present — and start to plan what we might do when it launches.

I can’t see just up and leaving the current version of WoW to solely exist in Classic, but I am really excited to jump into it at least casually (as casually as one can in Vanilla, that is). I’m sure there will be all manner of hype and positive peer pressure around playing it, if Old School RuneScape and the EverQuest progression servers are any indication.

I’ve been on-and-off considering what I might do when Classic comes out (my guess, December 2018). I do hope that there will be some sort of guild pulled together from among bloggers and commenters, so I’ll wait and see if that happens. But what do I want to play?

It would need to be a class and race that I’m not currently pushing hard, one that offered some fun in Vanilla and was self-sustaining. I think with those qualifications, I’ll be looking at a Tauren Shaman. They’d be something the Alliance wouldn’t have (at least not at first), and I do miss totems. Troll Shaman is another possibility, although I do have very fond memories of Mulgore as a starting zone and probably preferring the big cows as a character model over the hunchy trolls.

I would assume that the first week or so would be a wonderland of rediscovery and group excitement, but the big question will be in sustained interest over the long haul. I imagine that the “challenge” with an older version would be a selling point, although it could also be pretty frustrating too. I don’t have the fondest memories of late-game Vanilla back in 2005 and 2006. A slow journey to the top and then… not much. Rep grinds? Boring dungeons? We were pretty much waiting with bated breath on upcoming patches and the expansion.

I remember always having to use a very specific leveling guide that chained together the sparse quests across the world to help players get to 60 without too much grind. I also remember how much I felt that Burning Crusade was a blissful leveling experience in comparison, how excited I’d always get when my characters would reach level 58 and finally be able to ditch the desolate questing lands of Azeroth for the breezy Outlands. Funny how time changes that and how Outlands are now despised and avoided by so many players for being slow, ugly, and poorly designed.

Are you formulating any WoW Classic plans? What do you intend to play and do when the server launches?

10 thoughts on “World of Warcraft: Contemplating WoW Classic plans

  1. Isey November 20, 2017 / 11:38 am

    I’m not sure if I am going back. It doesn’t hold the same nostalgic sway as going back to EQ did. Not sure quite why, either.

    BUT, your mention of Shaman just upset me about the total homogenization of character classes in WoW. Sore spot for me, I loved those differences!

    The things I liked about the era – class dependency, use of CC in dungeons, etc. I am not so sure I care enough to go back and play the old version of. Because I still dip into the new version every expansion for the sole purpose of moving my characters forward in the WoW world, there isn’t much incentive for me to go back. At some point I will retire them and say goodbye for good but this isn’t the time.

    Yet. =)

  2. Bhagpuss November 20, 2017 / 2:44 pm

    Definitely going to play when it happened because I didn’t play first time around. I don’t imagine for a moment it’ll be more than an experiment, though. If I stay a couple of months I’d be surprised.

  3. Bhagpuss November 20, 2017 / 2:45 pm

    Grr. “happens” not “happened”.

  4. Shintar November 20, 2017 / 3:22 pm

    I will definitely play when it launches. I dabbled on a private server for a while and was surprised by how much I still loved the game and the world. Getting an official version run properly and on stable servers is fantastic news for me.

    As for what I’ll play, we’ll see. Ideally I’d like to get some of my old crew back together for a nostalgia trip, but I’m under no illusions about the chances of that actually working out. If I do find people to play with, I’ll probably be some kind of healer, because it’s what I always do in groups.

    However, worst case I could always roll a hunter and spend some time levelling solo and mostly in the company of my pet. 🙂

  5. josetorr November 20, 2017 / 3:51 pm

    I still own my original vanilla strategy guide, illustrated by Penny Arcade, going to have to wipe the dust of that one

  6. Pallais November 20, 2017 / 8:08 pm

    For me it will be leveling a Warlock. Do their epic mount quest chain calls to me since I never did it. Warlocks were the last of the original classes to click for me. I never got one to max level until after Cataclysm hit.

    Later, if I want to raid, I might roll a dwarf priest and see if I could eventually get Benediction. I have Rhok’delar, though I got it at a level where most of the quest stuff was trivial. Benediction, though, could still be challenging even at 80.

  7. kamaliaetalia November 20, 2017 / 11:08 pm

    I want to make a double of Kamalia, my Tauren Shaman main. I also want to make an Alliance Mage, though I haven’t quite decided if I’d rather be a Human or a Gnome.

    Because my main goal would be to explore the world and experience the zones and quests the way they used to be, perhaps I should go for the class that was the most robust for solo questing in Classic. Which class was that? A Hunter or a Warlock, maybe? Then I’d be looking at a Tauren Hunter or an Orc Warlock on the Horde side, and a Dwarf Hunter or a Gnome Warlock on the Alliance side. Or maybe a Night Elf Hunter (sorry, Syp) because I love the female Night Elf bow-drawing animation.

  8. Seamaster November 21, 2017 / 6:46 am

    damn u Syp for bringing up the troll shaman
    that was my main for all my wow years
    now I have this desire to play her again the way she was
    I didn’t have it until I read this post!

  9. Telwyn November 21, 2017 / 3:52 pm

    Hmm. I’m in two minds. I expect friends will drag me in as they’re more interested than I or my husband. I’d love to play Shaman as was but then I main Alliance, so that’ll be one problem. The slog of leveling with the “anaemic questing”, as you wrote in the Perfect Ten column, may be another problem. Playing those classic dungeons though, in all their sprawling and unbalanced glory will be a major plus point…

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