New AKB48 single songs, New WoW Dungeons and possibly a new J-Pop addiction.

So I’ve got a few things to get to today, so I’ll get right to it.

Last Tuesday saw the release of World of Warcraft’s 3.3 update patch, and boy, is it one of the best yet. First of all, let me say what a great addition the Dungeon Finder is. Essentially, you choose what role you want to play (DPS, Tank, healer) and then you can choose to queue up for either a random heroic or normal dungeon, or select from a list of all the instances which one you want to do. When you’ve queued up, all you have to do is wait till your put into a group, and your off to the dungeon. The nice things is that once your group is formed, your automatically teleported to the dungeon, so you can queue from ANYWHERE, which is awesome because you can go and do things while queuing, especially if you might have to wait a bit, but the wait times are normally not that bad. Another nice thing is that when your done and you either select to teleport out or just leave the group, you’ll be back to the spot you were at when your group was formed. Another nice thing is that if someone leaves, you’ll be put back into the Dungeon finder queue, and normally within seconds, a replacement will be found. Needless to say, as a DPS, this whole system makes getting into dungeons a WHOLE lot easier.

Now, lets move on to the new 5 man instances themselves, The Frozen Halls. There are 3 parts to this; The Forge of Souls, The Pit of Saron and the Halls of Reflection. In the Forge of Souls, you’ll face to bosses; Bronjahm, The Godfather of Souls (a humorous homage to James Brown, the Godfather of Soul) and The Devourer of Souls. The fight against Bronjahm is a fairly simple tank and spank until he starts casting Corrupt Soul on a party member. A soul orb will come out of that member and move towards Bronjahm, and if it touches him, he’ll be healed quite significantly. The best thing to do is to destroy the soul orb as quickly as possible, though he only does this a couple of times before casting Soul Storm, in which you have to move right near him to avoid taking damage. Normally when he does this, he’s done. Just keep damaging him and he’ll be down. The Devourer of Souls is a little harder. I always find this fight somewhat chaotic, but its still pretty simple. The best thing to remember is to stop attacking it when it casts Mirrored Soul on you. You’ll take damage when you deal damage to it as long as this debuff is up. It also has a nasty leaping attack, the Phantom Soul attack which you HAVE to avoid or its pretty much instant death, and an attack where he summons souls which you pretty much have to just run from. He also has a sweeping beam attack which can be pretty nasty. As long as you have decent healing and DPS, this fight is pretty easy.

The next dungeon is the Pit of Saron. Its the largest of the 3 dungeons, but in my opinion the easiest. Depending on which route you take at the beginning, the first boss you’ll fight is either Forgemaster Garfrost or Ick and Krick. The third and final boss is always Scourgelord Tyrannus. Garfrost is simple, yet throughout the fight he is always hitting you with a damage over time debuff, which can be weakened by standing behind one of the saronite boulders he throws. Other than that, its tank and spank until he’s down. Ick and Grick is a little more complicated, but still easy for a good group. In essence, you only actually fight Ick, though Krick does his own attacks from Icks back (Ick is a large zombie and Krick is a Gnome) Ick will constantly throw down patches of toxic waste, so you have to avoid those. He also will occasionally start running after one of your party members, so that person has to run away from him. Also, Ick will occasionally use a nasty poison nova attack, so make sure to get out of range of that. Kricks main attack is when he starts conjuring arcane bombs all over the place. You can continue to attack during this, just make sure to stay out of the bombs. This is one fight where you are always moving around.
Tyrannus is the final boss, and it too is fairly simple. He will occasionally cast the Overlords mark. If you do damage or healing while this is on you, Tyrannus will be healed instead, so you have to wait till its done to do anything. You also have to watch out for Tyrannus’s frost worm Rimefang, which will launch attacks from above, but you only need to kill Tyrannus.

The Final of the 3 instances is the Halls of Relection , and is, in my opinion, the best and hardest of the 3. It can be either the shortest or the longest depending on your group. The first room has you fighting 10 waves of spirits, as well as Arthas’ two right hand men, Falric and Marwyn. After the first 4 waves are down, you’ll fight Falric, and when the 9th wave is down, Marwyn will come out. Both are normally simple fights, though they can hit pretty hard. One bit of advice for the Spirt waves; fight them in one of the two alcoves of the room (where Falric and Marwyn stand) Just bunch up in one of those and it will make fighting the spirits a lot easier. Now, the 3rd and final fight is without a doubt the hardest 5 man encounter at the moment. Essentially, you have to get through 4 waves of enemies, all the while your being chased by the Lich King himself. While running to escape, Arthas will create a barrier blocking your progress and summon enemies to stop you. You have to kill the enemies as fast as possible in order to bring down the barrier, and this happens 4 times, with each consecutive wave consisting of more enemies. There are essentially 2 ways to screw this up; the Lich King as a damaging aura around him, so if you stand in that too long, you’ll die. Also, if Arthas reaches the barrier and your faction hero (Sylvannas for horde and Jaina for Alliance) he’ll do an attack which instantly kills your entire party. This is essentially a DPS race; you need lots of DPS, and you need it FAST. When you get to the end, your factions Airship (Skybreaker or Orgrims Hammer) will rise up from below and stop the Lich Kings advance. This scene is awesome and is something straight from a Hollywood movie.

Needless to say, these new instances are a blast, and I’m pretty much running them daily, in hopes that the elusive Battered Hilt will FINALLY drop…and of course to score some of the new gear that drops.

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Alright on to the next new thing; the new AKB48 single…or more accurately, the 2 new songs being included in the single. Recently, a number of the girls were split into two groups, Team YJ and Team PB. Each group has their own song being included in the new single (and I think there are different versions of the single with one of them on it, if I remember correctly. So in short, if you want both songs, you need to buy two versions of the single) and both songs are, in my opinion, equally awesome. The two songs are:

Team PB – Enkyori Poster
Team YJ – Choose Me!

Both songs are very upbeat, with Choose Me! being a fast paced rock song (like straight up rock, not to many hints of pop in it) and Enkyori is more a combination of pop/rock. Most of the fandom seems to be favouring Choose Me! over Enkyori, but I found both equally appealing, with both sounding distinctive. Though, I have to say I favor Enkyori a little bit more, because Yukirin is in Team PB, and she seems to be the main vocalist for the song (which is awesome!)

Needless to say, with these 2 songs being so good, I can’t wait to hear the A and B sides; hopefully they can live up to these 2 songs.

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So now, on to the last bit of new stuff, at least for me.

If you have been over to either International Wota or CK’s Blogs, you’ll have seen everyone raving over a…somewhat…new idol group, Momoiro Clover.

(In order from top left to bottom right)
Sasaki, Hayami, Takagi
Tamai, Momota, Ariyasu

I say somewhat new because they’ve been around since sometime last year, but have only started releasing singles this year. They also had about 5 members graduate (including Takai Tsukina who not to long ago graduated from SKE48) before they started doing singles. I have to give credit to CK for getting me into this group as without his initial post on them, I likely would never have heard of them, let along form some interest in them, so thanks!

It seems this group (which consists of 5 girls, Takagi Reni, Momota Kanako, Ariyasu Momoka, Hayami Akari, Tamai Shiori and Sasaki Ayaka) is taking the world (of Idol fandom) by storm, and after listening to their singles, I understand why. Their awesome! One thing that I noticed everyone seems to like about Momoiro is their traditional Japanese sound, and I have to agree. It is very present in their songs (and more so in their first single) and if anything it really separates this group from the others out there. They have one of the most distinctive sounds I have heard in quite some time.Their songs so far are not generic pop tunes. They are in a whole other bracket. I can’t do their songs justice just by talking about them, you really have to give them a listen for yourselves. So far though, I would have to say that their debut song, Momoiro Punch, is my favorite so far.

So I think its safe to say I will be following this group, for sure.

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So that’s it for today. Now its back to the Frozen Halls for me….

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World of Warcraft Patch 3.3, Fall of the Lich king, is live!

Huh, guess it did come out today. Not THAT surprising, but still…

I love how so many people were adamant about it not being released until later this month, or even going into next month. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned over the last few months, its to trust what Boubouille over at MMO Champion says. He said it would go live this week…and lo and behold…its gone live. Hell, this is the guy that practically called everything about Cataclysm, so he knows what he’s talking about.

Though I figured out on my own that the patch would be released this week, or at least before next Tuesday. Why? Well, its quite simple, yet no one seemed to notice. One change made in this patch is the removal of one achievement from the Winter Veil meta achievement. Now, Winter Veil starts next Tuesday. Put two and two together, and they pretty much confirmed the patch coming out this week with that one update.

So for me, I have a few things I’m defenitly going to get started on when the servers come back on (I hate that; Its like “Here’s the new patch with all its new shiny things…..but you can’t play it yet!” What a tease 😦 ) The first thing is to mail some of my heirloom items from my Horde Death Knight over to my Alliance Paladin, for when Cataclysm comes out (for my future Worgen Warrior). The next thing will be to try and get into the new 5 man dungeons and hope to dear god that the battered hilt drops and I win it. Why is this item so important? Because it starts the quest to obtain Quel’Delar, a powerful High-Elf sword. The quest involves doing a bit of running around, then going through all 3 sections of the new 5-man dungeon in order to reforge the sword, then finally giving the sword a good dip in the Sunwell in order to purify it. When its all said and done, you take the blade back to your respective faction (Sunreavers for the horde, Silver Covenant for the Alliance) and you are given your choice of either 4 variations of Quel’Delar, or one of 3 maces (if you can’t use swords):

Swords:

Quel’Delar, Might of the Faithful
Quel’Delar, Ferocity of the Scorned
Quel’Delar, Cunning of the Shadows
Quel’Delar, Lens of the Mind
Maces:
Cudgel of Furious Justice
Hammer of Purified Flame
Lightborn Spire

I myself will likely go for Might of the Faithful. That should suit my Death Knight the best.

The other major thing I’ll be doing is continuing to run heroics, which now graciously drop Triumph Emblems, so I can finish my Tier 9 armor set, which will then prepare me for the Icecrown Citadel raid. Also, the first random dungeon you do a day will award you with 2 emblems of Frost (the new high grade emblem) so I’ll also start saving up for my Tier 10 armor, and considering the prices for Tier 10 armor, I’ll be saving up emblems for awhile to come.

I am stoked to finally get playing, so hopefully when I’m done my University classes today the servers will be back up and running.

The “Best of” and “Worst of” – 2009 Edition

Sure, 2009 was, in all fairness, a pretty crappy year, primarily due to all that bad economic crap that went down, however, there were actually a lot of great things about this 2009, lets take a look shall we?

AKB48/SKE48
Best of:

Team B’s 4th Stage “Idol no Yoake”

Team B once again proved they are the best team in AKB48 (who says I’m biased 🙂 ) with their 2nd original Stage, Idol no Yoake. This stage has a bit of everything in it, rock, pop, nice ballads, and that’s why I think it stands as one of AKB48’s best stages yet. Its also the last stage for the original Team B, so its a bit bittersweet as well. Kinda sad that the original Team B only got TWO original stages, whereas A and K got 5. That’s hardly fair.

Iwake Maybe

Iwake Maybe was a breath of Fresh air in regards to AKB singles. The previous single, Namida Suprise, ranks up there with crappy singles like Baby!Baby!Baby! and Aitakatta (sorry, I just CANNOT stand that song), so Iwake was a nice followup. I think for me, having a similar sound to Oogoe Diamond really is what makes it a favorite of mine. You all know how much I love OD, so Iwake having a similar sound and feel just works for me. The other thing that makes this a great single is the fact that for once, the B-side is actually…good. I haven’t been a fan of too many of AKB’s b-sides (a majority of them being familiar stage songs and nothing really new) so an equally awesome original b-side song was also nice. This single has also introduced the concept of having separate groups for both songs, something I see them sticking with for future singles (just PLEASE ditch that whole Undergirls name)

RIVER

River is, without a doubt, the best AKB48 single at the moment. Its got just a badass rock sound to it, and is defenitly a unique single compared to past singles. The whole military theme is also pretty awesome. Nice to see its not just another school-girl themed single. The only downside to this single would be that they used Hikoukigumo as an accompanying song. Its just not that good, nor is it an original song. But that aside, everything else about RIVER is awesome, and it is defenitly AKB48’s best single of the year, and the sales will back up that statement.

Team S’s 2nd Stage “Te wo Tsunaginagara”


I originally didn’t like this stage, but that’s what you get when you listen to crappy previews of only a few of the songs. After listening to this stage in full, I came to one conclusion. SKE48 Team S fucking kicks ass! For their first original stage, Team S debuted with a bang. This stage has a mix of everything, which for me is great, as it means your not sticking to one style of song all the way through, which gets tedious and boring FAST (much like A1, A2 and A3 did, and is the reason I don’t care for those stages much). This stage also has a very different feel to it than AKB48 stages. I can’t pin-point it exactly, but I really like SKE’s style so far. Its just…different, and it works.

Team S’s 3rd Stage “Seifuku no Me”

While I haven’t heard all the songs for this stage as of yet, I can already tell this stage is going to be even better than S2. It seems to be carrying on with that distinctive SKE sound, and it also seems to be expanding on it as well. I will obviously have more on this stage once we have more of it (like an LoD performance…please?) So stay tuned. So far, though, its looking awesome!

SKE48’s Debut single “Tsuyokimono yo”

Let me get this out of the way first; AKB48 had 2 horrible debut singles. Their indie release, Sakura no Hanabiritachi, is just outright boring, and not my thing. Their official debut single, Aitakatta, is just plain bad and horribly annoying. One of the few AKB songs I REFUSE to listen too. SKE48 fared a whole lot better. Tsuyokimono yo is an outright baddass, awesome song. Now this is what I call a debut. If this is what we can expect from SKE48 regarding their singles, we are in for some awesome songs.


Worst of:

Team K’s 5th Stage “Saka Agari”
Yeah, I really don’t care for Team K’s latest stage. Its got a couple of gems, but overall, its lackluster and a complete disappointment. I can’t really say anything else about this stage. Its just not my cup of tea I guess. Though I seem to be in the minority about K5. Everyone else seems to love it (or it could be that Team K fans just can’t stop talking about it…I don’t know…), but I just can’t get over how bland it is.


Team Shuffling

This is likely the biggest news in regards to AKB48 this year, and likely in the groups entire 4 year history. At the time of the announcement was when I was taking my little break from the group, and even then it hit pretty hard. Now, the fandom has begun to cool off about the news and is slowly coming around to accepting it (face it, its happening) and I for one am excited to see the new stages with the new teams. However, one thing I am not looking forward too is more new girls getting pushed to the front because of this shuffle. A lot of former research students have been promoted to full team members, and already people are talking about them being front girls.

No thank you, not until some of the less popular girls (especially ones who have the talent and DESERVE to be in front) have their time to shine. And even then, these new girls shouldn’t be put to the front because their new and fresh. That unfair to the girls who have been there far longer and have yet to have their chance in the spotlight. Heck, I’m already pissed about a certain new Team B member being promoted at all, when she obviously has a lack of talent and stage presence, and she seems to be promoted a lot lately.

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World of Warcraft

Best of:

Secrets of Ulduar, Call of the Crusade and Fall of the Lich King

This year along, we have had treated to the 3 main content patches of the Wrath of the Lich King expansion. Patch 3.1, Secrets of Ulduar brought us the awesomeness that is the Ulduar Raid. I myself have never fully completed the raid, but I have experienced a bit of it, and of what I did go through, I loved ever minute of it. The beginning vehicular battle through the gauntlet is very fun to play through, and having a boss ( The Flame Leviathan) you fight while in said vehicles is actually a rather intense, yet enjoyable and manageable fight. The lore behind the raid is deep and exciting, especially when you finally come face to face with the man himself (or rather the mouth himself), the old god Yogg-Saron. Call of the Crusade was somewhat of a letdown when compared to Ulduar ( in regards to the raid instance), but it did introduce some great things; new five man instance, new daily quests and corresponding rewards, new loot, etc. The final WOTLK patch, Fall of the Lich King, is due out anyway day now and is bringing even more big things, among them a totally revamped Dungeon Finder system, which will make it much easier to find groups for raids and dungeons. Also coming, of course are new instances; a new 3-part 5 man dungeon and of course, the Icecrown Citadel raid, which will culminate in the final showdown with Arthas. A ton of other small but useful changes are coming as well. Of all the 3 patches for this expansion, this one has me excited the most.

Worst of:
Constant whiners and complainers – Every single day it seems like more and more people come out and complain about SOMETHING about WoW. Its something new everyday; “its too easy to get gear now”. “my class keeps getting nerfed”..blah blah blah…its annoying. Seriously, can these people not realize that its a game? If you don’t like what Blizzard is doing, stop playing the game. That way those of us who enjoy it can be rid of you and your constant bitching. It gets infuriating to read some of the various WoW forums and see nothing but complaint after complaint after complaint. I think Blizzard is doing a phenomenal job with WoW, but I guess there are those people who will never be satisfied until the game is exactly the way THEY want it. Again, all I can say is that if you don’t like it, don’t play it, its that freaking simple.

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Gundam
Best of:

Announcements of the Gundam 00 Movie and Gundam Unicorn OVA series

So yes, while these are not technically “out” yet, they were announced this year, and its the hot topic of the Gundam community at the moment. 2010 is not only giving us the hotly anticipated Gundam Unicorn OVA, its also giving us a Gundam 00 movie. How awesome is that? I’m highly anticipating both of these. Gundam Unicorn will be the first animated UC series of any form in quite some time, and its nice to return to the Gundam universe that started it all, and its nice to finally see the immediate aftermath of Char’s Counterattack. And a Gundam 00 movie is just the icing on the cake. 00 is likely my favorite AU series and one of my top fav series of all time, and I’m curious to see where the movie will take it.

Worst of:

Too much merchandise, not enough money
Yup, thats my only complaint about Gundam this year. So many awesome new model kits, DVD’s figures, etc have been released this year, and its too much for my poor wallet to handle. Ease up on the merchandise Bandai…please?

And another one bites the dust…

So for the last 2 months or so in World of Warcraft, My main (a Death Knight) has been a member of a guild known as The Juggernauts. It was a great guild in my opinion. We did raids regularly, however we never really finished any. But to me, that didn’t matter, considering we actually GOT INTO the raids. I’ve been in a number of guilds where we wouldn’t even get into the raid due to not being able to get enough people or people just being jerks and joining and leaving and whatnot. The fact that we were able to get raids going (which seems to be getting harder and harder nowadays) was just great for me. I also really liked the members of this guild. They were great to play with. And that really goes along way in WOW.

Now, over the last week, things were kinda quiet. I didn’t think of it much as there are always going to be periods of downtime. So imagine my shock when I logged on the other day to find that pretty much all the main raiders had left the guild. Hell, the Guild Master had even left.

Not good. Not good at all.

I logged in yesterday to do some of my dailies, and found I was no longer in the guild. The Juggernauts were officially dead.

Right now, Guilds in WoW are really nothing more than social networks in which to chat and get groups together for instances. This is why I am excited for Cataclysm, in which Guilds will become so much more. The Guild system in Cata will allow for guilds to progress towards special bonuses and the like, which in my opinion, will give guilds a lot more reasons to stick around, and for people to stick around as well. Right now, there is no real draw to stay in a guild, though really if you want to raid you need a guild.

Now, I just need to find a new guild…god I hate doing that, considering most guilds on my server don’t need anymore Death Knights.

On another note, I’m beginning to think I will NEVER get my Polar Bear mount from the Brunnhildar Village daily quest(s). Seriously, I’ve been doing that quest for months, and still no damn bear. I understand making something rare, but come on, this is almost ridiculous. From what I’ve read, it has a 1% drop rate (from the spoils bag you get from completing the quest), so really, every time you complete the quest, you have a 1% chance of getting it. Pretty dumb if you ask me. But hey, guess I just gotta keep doing the quest, it has to drop sometime…

World of Warcraft Cataclysm

Before I get to the bulk of this post, I figured I’d post the new MV for T-ara’s song Lies. It came out just shortly after I posted before, so I wasn’t able to put it in the original post:

Now, yeah, the PV doesn’t fit the song whatsoever, but screw that. There’s nothing wrong with seeing the girls frolicking around at a water park. Nothing wrong at all.  Eunjeong especially looked good. Hell, they all did. This just proves the fact that girls + water parks = a damn good idea 🙂

Anyway, on to the main event. Friday marked the beginning of this year’s Blizzcon convention, and everyone was anticipating one specific thing; the announcement of the new World of Warcraft expansion, supposedly named Cataclysm. Prior to the event, numerous supposed details about a new expansion were leaked, though no one knew for sure if they were true (though the one blogger over at MMO Champions was 100% sure he was right about the info being absolutely correct)

And he was right. At the opening ceremony to Blizzcon, WoW’s 3rd major expansion, named Cataclysm, was officially announced, and pretty much all the leaked info was proven to be correct. Now, I won’t go over ALL the new stuff coming out in this expansion (just go to practically any game site or WoW blog like Project Lore or MMO Champion for all the nitty gritty details) but I would like to talk about the things I am excited most for.

2 New Playable Races: Goblins and Worgen

This is likely the biggest addition to the new expansion. A faction of the Goblins (remember, the goblins overall are normally neutral between both Horde and Alliance) have joined the Horde after shipwrecking in the Lost Isles. On the Alliance side, the werewolf like Worgen have join the alliance. Now, the Worgen joining the Alliance are in fact the cursed citizens of the Kingdom of Gilneas, which sealed itself away long ago. However, they were still hit by the worgen curse, and for years have lived a terrifying existence. Now, the Greymane wall protecting Gilneas has come down, and the secret of Gilneas has been revealed to the world.

Goblins look to be essentially the horde’s own version of the Gnomes, but much cooler. Goblins have long been an important part of WoW, and to be finally be able to play as one is pretty neat. However, I am more interested in the Worgen. Worgen’s will have the ability to shift between their human form and worgen form at will, which will be pretty cool. If I want to run around as a human I can, but then if I want to be a badass wolfman, I can, when ever I want. Worgen also have some pretty cool racial features, the neatest one being they can skin animals without having to have a skinning knife (I mean, huge claws should be just as good as I knife right?) and they get a bonus to the skinning profession as well. Their starting zone also greatly interests me. Gilneas has always been a place I have wanted to go to in game. I mean, you can go right up to the damn Greymane wall, and its just there, taunting you. You can’t go past it, its just there. Now we can go beyond the wall, and finally learn the fate of Gilneas. The Worgen will also make the Alliance so much more awesome that it ever has been. They are very much a horde-like race, so having the Worgen in the alliance should make things very interesting. And lastly, Worgen are essentially were-wolves (well, the ones of Gilneas and Silverpine are, original Worgen are in fact other worldly beings first brought to Azeroth by the ancient Night Elves using the Scythe of Elune and then by Archmage Arugal, who is responsible for the worgen curse itself, to fight the scourge. These worgen are inherently evil beings who come from a world of eternal war, where they fight against beings known only as the Lords of the Emerald Flame, who some believe may be the Burning Legion). How may games let you play as werewolves? not many.

Oh, and Goblins get cars as their mounts. Freaking awesome. Worgen also apparently get these weird pig/wolf things. I only saw some concept art, so I’m not certain what their mount is as of yet, but still.

Azeroth is Changed…forever.

With the Cataclysm (hence the title of the expansion) comes huge changes to the geography of Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms, where most of the expansion will take place. The cataclysm has devastated much of the land, so zones you’ve been to numerous times will look vastly different. These changes also bring about the ability to use flying mounts in mainland Azeroth, as things would be difficult to traverse otherwise. Forinstance, the Barrens will be split into two, Tanaris and Wailing Caverns are now lush and full of life, Thousand Needles is flooded, and Blackrock mountain has erupted. The new Azeroth will be much different, and much more interesting that ever before.

Uldum

This is another place that has always been present, but has been inaccessible. Uldum lies at the very southern tip of Kalimdor, in Tanaris. With the new expansion, the veil will be lifted and the secrets of Uldum will be revealed. Apparently, within Uldum (which will be split into two 5 man instances; Halls of Origination and The Lost City of the Tol’vir) lies a Titan super weapon, which The Alliance, Horde and the primary enemy faction (which I’ll get to next) all want to gain control of. Now, I can only guess what kind of weapon this could be. After seeing some of the stuff in Ulduar ( The Flame Leviation, XT-002 Deconstructor and Mimiron’s V-07-TR-0N weapon system) it should be awesome. This Titan complex also has an ancient Egyptian style of architecture, which is interesting because Ulduman in the Badlands had a very ancient Greece style to it, while the various ruins in Northrend had somewhat a mixture of both with Roman styling to it (though the Titans themselves are based on the deities of Norse Mythology) so it will defenitly be a sight to see. The lore should also be a feast for the mind. I’m also excited to see everyones favorite Titan fan Brann Bronzebeard make his return.

and now on to what has me most excited for the new expansion:

The return of Deathwing and Ragnaros, and the Elemental Planes:

Deathwing, also known as Neltharion The Earthwarder, makes his triumphant return as the primary villian of Cataclysm. First some backstory. Deathwing was formerly known as Neltharion, and was the aspect of the Black Dragonflight and likely the most respected of the various aspects. However, he was driven mad by whisperings of the Old Gods, and turned to a being of pure evil, known as Deathwing, the aspect of death. Deathwing hasn’t been seen since Warcraft II, and now his return from the elemental plane of Earth, Deepholme, has brought about the great cataclysm that has torn Azeroth asunder, and also has the Old God cult known as the Twilight Hammer on his side. Now, last time we saw Deathwing, he had grafted armor plates to himself, but was still somewhat an average looking dragon (blame old graphics for that) but now, Deathwing is back and more badass than ever:

ss39_hires

Now, if this is what being driven mad by the Old Gods turns you into…then sign me up. Seriously, have you ever seen a dragon look so awesome? Awesome work by the Blizzard artists.

The other big baddie making a return is the fire lord Ragnaros, who players banished back to the elemental plane of fire back in vanilla WoW. We will now get the chance to take the fight to Ragnaros in said plane, where he is at his strongest. That should be one hell of a fight.

We will also visit Deepholme and the elemental plane of water (in the form of the dungeon Abyssal Maw) as well as the Elemental plane of air I believe. These should be some interesting places indeed.
Needless to say, this is going to one hell of an expansion. The revamping of old areas is awesome enough, but all the rest of the new stuff just makes me want this expansion more. Now, we still have Wrath of the Litch King to go through (Icecrown Citadel and Arthas are next) but come the end of that, we’ll have a lot to look forward to. Bring on the Cataclsym!