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World of Warcraft Battle Chest

Experience the World of Warcraft! World of Warcraft is an online role-playing experience set in the award-winning Warcraft universe. Players assume the roles of Warcraft heroes as they explore, adventure, and quest across a vast world. Being “Massively Multiplayer,” World of Warcraft allows thousands of players to interact within the same world. Whether adventuring together or fighting against each other in epic battles, players will form friendships, forge alliances, and compete with enemies for power and glory. And now, World of Warcraft and its Expansion Pack “World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade” are combined in one package with additional items!

  • Includes both the World of Warcraft base sku and the Burning Crusade expansion pack
  • Official Battle Chest strategy guides: one for Burning Crusade and one for World of Warcraft
  • Game manuals
  • WOW guest pass (14-day trial)
  • Blizzard catalog included

Rating: (out of 120 reviews)

List Price: $ 39.99
Price: $ 26.72

World of Warcraft Battle Chest Reviews

Review by Mitchell M. Tse:

I bought this for my son, since I had only bought him WoW without the expansion.

With the assumption that you’ve decided you want to play WoW, all the way through to lvl 70, this is the pack for you. You get WoW and expansion, which would cost 50 bucks if bought separately. You also get two strategy guides, but the strategy guide for the expansion (see my review for it here World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade Official Strategy Guide (World of Warcraft)) is terribly lacking, so we’re really looking at one valuable guide, one crappy guide. What you also get, and not even the box mentions this, is the game on DVD! Oh, how many times I’ve installed and reinstalled the original WoW on multiple computers at home and at my friends place, swapping disks. Well, no more! Unless you were lucky and bought the original Collector’s edition World of Warcraft Collector’s Edition and World Of Warcraft Burning Crusade Collector’s Edition, you’re stuck with 4 CDs each instead of 1 DVD.

Overall, I would buy (in fact, I did).

Update December 2009:

I’ve bought my 4th copy of this battlechest (yeah, I try to enlist friends and families to play WoW, so call me the Wow drug dealer….), which arrived the week before Thanksgiving 2009. Instead of 2 DVDs (one for WoW and one for The Burning Crusade), you now get everything in one DVD, with the two activation codes both printed on separate labels on the DVD cardboard sleeve. Not very different, but it’s nice that they at least save a bit of plastic by packing it all in one disc. Still comes with one month of play included, contrary to what the one comment on my review claimed.

And until they release a new battlechest that will include Wrath of the Lich King (which I doubt Blizzard will do until right after they release their next expansion [to be titled Cataclysm {which I preordered my max of 3 from Amazon already!}]) this battle chest is still the deal to buy. Also, in my opinion, including the Burning crusade makes sense, since it does include 2 new player races as well as their corresponding zones in Azeroth, which can be played from the beginning, whereas pretty much all of Wrath of the Lich King isn’t available until you’re at least lvl 55, and then Blizzard sinks in the extra hook. Would have been nice if there was a battlechst that included all 3, since that would have potentially saved me money, but oh, well….

Still greatly recommended for the person wanting to start playing WoW.

Review by Kule Noorth:

This is a very long post, but well worth it if you’re seriously considering this game.

Pros:

First and foremost this game is a milestone in the both the MMORPG and online gaming industry. With over 11 million subscribers, it’s the largest online game to date, and for good reason.

The graphics, while cartoonish, indulge you in a moving work of art with flowing waterfalls, freezing tundras, and shadow-ridden caves. The world itself is simply huge (though surprisingly easy to navigate), spanning across four continents (one in outer space), and leaves the gamer with an unparalleled sense of citizenship. Once you log into World of Warcraft, you truly plug into a hidden universe.

The music is truly worthy of mention. When you first launch the game, you are met with a symphony of heart-pounding drums, violins, bassoons, or what-have-you. The music/ambience then changes frequently throughout the game depending upon your current location and really adds an element of class to the experiences of stepping into a haunted mine, or riding up to the gates of a citadel.

The gameplay ranges from simple to slightly complicated depending upon your class selection, but always maintains the smooth controls that are oh-so-user-friendly. You can select from 9 different classes at the start (another is available further on in the game), each of which have their own roles to fulfill by either Healing, Tanking (taking the hits for other less-hardy classes), or DPSing (DPS: Damage per second, a term used to explain classes adept at dealing damage). Also with the introduction of “dual-spec,” a character is able to switch between two customizable talent builds (determines your main role: healing/tanking/dps, through the selection certain talents) at the drop of a hat.

The most basic gameplay consists of leveling your character from 1 to 80 via the completion of quests, invading of dungeons, and slaying of monsters, all of which grant “experience,” and move you closer to the next level. If you grow wary leveling, it is possible to “que” into a battleground from anywhere in the world. There are four different types of battle: capture the flag, protect the resources, defend/attack the keep, and control the territory. You compete against real players controlling real characters on different computers, which is typically referred to as “PVP,” or player versus player.

Once you have reached the maximum level, the fun has just begun. You will continue advancing your character by upgrading his or her equipment (or “gear”). Raids, dungeons and “heroics” offer thousands of powerful monsters that, when killed, give weapons and armor that strengthen your character. Dungeons and heroics are typically conquered by five players effectively working together to defeat the obstacles and creatures within. Raids follow a different suit, requiring 10 to 25 skilled players able to communicate and coordinate themselves in order to (hopefully) kill the most difficult monsters in the game.

Another option to the post-leveling stage (or “end game content”) is coordinated PVP. Beside the four available battlegrounds, the game contains four “arena” maps offering extremely competitive play in the form of 2v2, 3v3, or 5v5. If you are successful, the rewards are some of the most powerful upgrades in the game.

Guilds, world events, seasonal events, mounts, professions, mini-games, parties, transportation and real-time economies are just a few more of the many other unnamed aspects to this game. Some things are simply best if discovered.

Cons:

In recent times, the game has found difficulties in PVP in terms of equality. Some classes seem to always be more powerful than others, however, the developers of the game promise that they’re addressing this situation.

It is fairly expensive if thought of as simply a video game. The game runs at (I believe) a month, or .99 if you pay for 6 months at once. By the time you’ve purchased the original game and the two expansion packs, you’re out 0+, which doesn’t include subscription fees. The cheapest route to take is to purchase the Battle-chest (the first two games), the second expansion pack (soon to be added to the Battle-chest) and a large chunk of game time.

A key thing to consider in terms of price is that you’re buying much more than a game. You’re paying for the new content which is released almost every two months, the server maintenance, and in-game customer support. Also, keep in mind, that this game will (probably) entertain you for much longer than a TV or DVD or Console game. Sure, an XBox game is only .99, very cheap compared to World of Warcraft, but within a few weeks/months the XBox game will become dull, whereas this game will have already released new content to be conquered.

*This is why I only gave it 4 stars*

The game is addicting. Extremely. Dangerously. No, seriously, if you have any history of alcohol/drug/gambling abuse, you should reconsider, or at least be informed prior to purchasing.

I offer to you this solution: first, download the 10 day free trial. Next, keep a log of the amount of time you spend on the game during these 10 days. It’s expected that you will 1-3 hours a day initially, but will quickly fall into the 4+ hours as your trial nears its end. After the 10 day trial, take a look at how much time you’ve spent on this game. Some might find themselves in “good shape,” with only a couple hours of play time. Most will find that they’ve spent an upwards of 30 hours (or much more) on the game in only 10 days.

Determine for yourself if you truly have that much free time to spend on a video game. If you do, wonderful, then this is the game for you, and I hope you enjoy your experience. If you believe this is too much time to spend on a game, don’t fret! Within the account creation process, you will be able to set up “parental controls” for the availability of play. It is in this device that you can limit your playtime to a healthy and sustainable amount.

I hope this was helpful.

Buy World of Warcraft Battle Chest now for only $ 26.72!

World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Expansion Pack

Fans of World of Warcraft, prepare for Blizzard Entertainment’s next installment — World of Warcraft: Wrath of King Lich. In this latest expansion, something is afoot in the cold, harsh northlands. The Lich King Arthas has set in motion events that could lead to the extinction of all life on Azeroth. The necromantic power of the plague and legions of undead armies threaten to sweep across the land. Only the mightiest heroes can oppose the Lich King and end his reign of terror.

The tuskarr, a walrus-like race of nomadic fisherman, inhabit the icy Borean Tundra. View larger.

Half-giant warriors, the vrykul, once inhabited the land. View larger.

You’ll enjoy exploring Northrend and all its environments and dungeons. View larger.

Explore Northrend and battle the Lich King with World of Warcraft’s first hero class character — The Death Knight. View larger.

One of many new environments, Dragonblight is an arctic wasteland surrounded by dense forests. View larger.

Many strange and terrifying creatures inhabit this frozen continent. View larger. Enter the Death Knight
This expansion adds a host of content to the already massive existing game world. Players will achieve soaring levels of power, explore Northrend (the vast icy continent of the Lich King), and battle high-level heroes to determine the ultimate fate of Azeroth. As you face the dangers of the frigid, harsh north, prepare to master the dark necromantic powers of the Death Night — World of Warcraft’s first Hero class. No longer servants of the Lich King, the Death Knights begin their new calling as experienced, formidable

  • This expansion pack REQUIRES the original World of Warcraft game and The Burning Crusade expansion pack in order to run
  • World of Warcraft: Wrath of King Lich expansion pack for PC and Mac opens the new continent of Northrend
  • Death Knight is Warcraft’s first hero class and is available for any player with at least a level-55 character
  • Northrend offers new environments, including Dragonblight, Grizzly Hills, Borean Tundra, and Howling Fjord
  • New creatures inhabit the icy continent, such as Nerubian Viziniers, Plague Eruptors, Shoveltusks and Flesh Giants

Rating: (out of 192 reviews)

List Price: $ 39.99
Price: $ 29.99

World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Expansion Pack Reviews

Review by J. C. Amos:

I have been playing World of Warcraft since a month after it came out. Not quite consistently, as I’ve taken a couple of 6 or so month breaks in that duration, but I’ve been there through all the changes. Having started playing the game again 2 years ago when Burning Crusade came out and being pretty disappointed, I have to say that restarting the game again this time with Lich King has been a much better experience. At first, I only got the expansion because all of my friends and all the old folks from my guild were getting back together. So I figured that even though I wasn’t really looking forward to getting into the game again, at least I’d have the fun social aspect of it. But I’m having more fun playing the game with this expansion than I have had since the game started and everything was new.

So does that mean that the game has totally changed and we’re playing a whole new WoW? Not exactly. It seems that this is the expectation that a lot of people are having. I’m reading a lot of negative reviews saying that this is more of the same. Well, unfortunately for them, it is. It’s the same game, just more of it. There are still plenty of obnoxious people with bad manners and even worse skills in English, still plenty of quests that involve killing mobs and gathering items, still an opposing faction that kills you while you’re questing (for me there is anyways) and so on. But in my opinion, the new content in Northrend has much more depth, much more detail and is just plain more fun than anything I experienced with the Burning Crusade Expansion. It really seems that Blizzard took their time in making the quests much more unique and varied as well as many other aspects of the content.

A lot of people jump on WoW to plow through the quests and instances and get to level 80 as soon as possible. Why? There probably won’t be another expansion for 2 years, so what’s the rush? That’s my feeling about that anyways. I find that when I play the game more sparsely, I’m able to appreciate the time that was put into it and also prevent myself from getting burned out. I pay attention to a lot of things in games that other may not care about at all, such as environment and music. The new zones in Northrend look really cool (at least by the standard that WoW looks considering the graphics are outdated in general, but with an MMO that’s not really a problem for me.) With the first zone in Northrend, Borean Tundra, I was just impressed by the scope of the place: four flight points, 130 quests, NPC ships raiding NPC towns, undead crawling out of the earth, gnome planes flying all over the place… It was all a little overwhelming. And I didn’t find that much annoying repetition as I did the quests there, despite the fact that there are twice as many quests in that zone as there are in the first zone of Outlands. In fact, some of the quests were pretty innovative. And the environment for the second zone I went to, Howling Fjord, was simply amazing to me. The boat ride into the huge cove with the towering canyons, waterfalls, all around was unlike any WoW environment I had seen. Continually as I go into each zone, everything about Northrend just seems bigger and more grand than anywhere else.

Another thing that’s impressed me with the expansion is the music. Most of the up-tempo quasi Lord of the Rings style score has been replaced with more mellow and melodic fare. From the first boat ride into Northrend you’ll hear a somber but really amazing fiddle tune and much of the music in the many zones matches that tone. It’s sometimes a little odd to be in the midst of slaughtering enemies to the sounds of fiddle and pipes in the background, but somehow it all works. A lot of the music throughout the rest of the world has been changed and enhanced for the better as well.

These things aside, everything else about the game seems to be enjoyable. PVP is one of my favorite WoW pass times and there’s no shortage of that here. Admittedly, the Wintergrasp PVP zone isn’t quite as huge and amazing as I’d hoped, but it’s still fun, as is the new battleground. The instances are more attuned for my liking, since I rarely get a time to play video games for more than an hour or two at a time. The new smaller, more easily accessible dungeons are much more fun and like a lot of the quest lines, they’re actually pretty fun and unique.

So perhaps it was the fact that I bought it with low expectations, or maybe it’s just because Blizzard really put out a good product, but I really like Wrath of the Lich King. If you’re looking for the childish and a**hole players to disappear, looking for less questing to do, less… Warcraft, then you’re looking for another game. This is still World of Warcraft, but now it’s as good or better than it ever was.

Review by B. Dyer:

For the most part, this is by far the best incarnation of WoW yet. Northrend is joy to quest in since it looks nice, has excellent lore (at least for the alliance) that involves you like never before, and a new class that is really fun to play. However, after awhile the novelty of all this new stuff wears off and you’re left with the end game content to keep you playing. As someone who can’t raid, I was really looking forward to getting to run the new heroics and things. However, Blizzard’s new philosophy on the “difficulty scaling” of the game has pretty much completely changed the way end game content runs. After less than a month of playing, my friends and I were tearing through the heroics like nothing. Its hard to get psyched for new gear when you can already dominate in what you have. Heroics in TBC were basically hard as heck raids for 5 people, and I miss that. Heroics aren’t the only casualty to the new system: I’ve never seen so many people with the best gear in the game before just running around. My friends that do raid have nothing left to do, and are now just epicly gearing out all their alts. That situation will be fixed with patches, but it stinks to have to just wait for everything. This is basically the first time playing the game I (and my friends) were left with nothing to do except level alts. I can’t really comment on the pvp state of the game since that’s not my thing (bg’s are the most frustrating thing ever… especially on Alliance).

In summary, exploring the new world for the first time is fun, but that’s about it. If you can’t raid and aren’t obsessed with pvp, find an alt you love or be prepared for boredom.

Buy World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Expansion Pack now for only $ 29.99!

World of Warcraft 60 Day Pre-Paid Time Card

The World Of Warcraft 60 Day Time Card Lets gamers enter the world of Azeroth for 60 days of real-time combat in an incredible fantasy setting.

  • Box contains Game Card only.

Rating: (out of 129 reviews)

List Price: $ 29.99
Price: Too low to display

World of Warcraft 60 Day Pre-Paid Time Card Reviews

Review by Nam Nguyen:

The price as the time writing this review is for 2 months, that gives you about .50 per month. The cheapest you can get from WoW official website is .99/month, only IF you pre-paid for 6 months.

So pre-paid for 2 months at .50/month vs pre-paid 6 months at .99/month, you do the math.

I had to say I was a little bit turn off by what Blizzard did to me few minutes ago, I posted on their forums the link to this Amazon deal, it was deleted in 3 minutes. I know they’re trying to protect their monthly fee, but it’s kind of childish and immature, IMO. Just let you guys know here, you’re the judge.

Review by bixodoido:

Okay, this is pretty straightforward. By paying for WoW using these prepaid game cards you get the game cheaper than if you pay month to month using a credit card. On top of that you get the added security of not having to give your credit card info for your subscription. For parents of young people who play the game this is even better, ensuring that your personal information will stay hidden in case the account is hacked. And remember, these cards ship free if you buy over worth, so keep that in mind. Overall this is just a great value, and a cheaper way to feed your MMORPG craving.

Buy World of Warcraft 60 Day Pre-Paid Time Card now for only Too low to display!

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm

An ancient evil lies dormant within Deepholm, the domain of earth in the Elemental Plane. Hidden away in a secluded sanctuary, the corrupted Dragon Aspect Deathwing has waited, recovering from the wounds of his last battle against Azeroth and biding his time until he can reforge the world in molten fire. Soon, Deathwing the Destroyer will return to Azeroth, and his eruption from Deepholm will sunder the world, leaving a festering wound across the continents. As the Horde and Alliance race to the epicenter of the cataclysm, the kingdoms of Azeroth will witness seismic shifts in power, the kindling of a war of the elements, and the emergence of unlikely heroes who will rise up to protect their scarred and broken world from utter devastation.

  • Two New Playable Races – Goblins and Worgen
  • Level Cap Increased to 85
  • Classic Zones Remade
  • New High-Level Zones
  • Flying Mounts in Azeroth

List Price: $ 39.99
Price: $ 39.99

World of Warcraft

Vivendi (72212) World of Warcraft PCWorld of Warcraft didn’t invent the online role-playing genre, but it certainly benefits from the missteps of other titles that have come before. A mind-boggling array of improvements in graphics, gameplay, networking, and interface–really every category–makes this game the crown prince of the genre, a great starting place for newbies, and a challenge to any other MMORPG currently in the works. The game’s beautifully rendered locations are filled with small details, such as flying birds and flowing water. A History of Conflict
WoW takes place just four years after the real-time strategy Warcraft series, which chronicles a 25 year struggle between the Alliance (humans, dwarves, gnomes, and elves) and the Horde (orcs, tauren, trolls, and undead). Even though there’s tons of accumulated story to the series, new players should not be daunted. The background is there for you to explore, but you don’t have to tread a lot of Azeroth history to get into the action. The makers boast 2,000 existing quests with more being added, many of them noncombat in nature.
The game looks magnificent. There’s plenty of detail and variety to the landscapes and interiors, and the artwork has a refreshingly playful style. There’s not a lot of variety in the character creation process, but with all the skills and proficiencies to combine in the game, WoW focuses its customization not on the appearance of your character but rather on the character of your character. The game lets you adopt any two trade skills, regardless of character race or class, and combine those skills in useful ways. If you choose skinning and leatherworking,

  • This game requires a monthly fee, and an internet connection to play
  • Create and customize your own hero from the unique races and classes of the Warcraft universe
  • Explore an expansive world with miles of forests, deserts, snow-blown mountains, and other exotic lands
  • Visit huge cities and delve through dozens of vast dungeons
  • Adventure together with thousands of other players in an enormous, persistent game world

Rating: (out of 868 reviews)

List Price: $ 19.99
Price: $ 12.50

World of Warcraft Reviews

Review by Walter Milford:

This game is, quite simply, the best Fantasy MMORPG I have ever encountered. Having played during the entire 11 day Stress Test, I can honestly say it will probably be around even longer than EverQuest. This work of art has all the magic of EQ, without the many frustrations that finally caused me to give up on EQ (such as extreme grind, a very punitive death penalty, and being forced to group at high levels).

The graphics in WoW are awesome. Some people complain about the “cartoonish” colors, etc. I find these graphics to be very pleasing to the eye, and extremely well detailed and arranged. Guess this just shows that it isn’t possible to please everyone, particularly those who go out of their way to find a flaw in other people’s creations. To me, it is just right.

I won’t elaborate on the basics of the game, such as the 8 races and 9 classes. Others have already covered them. Rather, I will focus on some other areas that are important to older players (I will soon be 60 years old, and no longer have the lightning-fast hand to eye coordination and sharp vision I once enjoyed).

There appeared to be no need for extremely quick reflexes in this game, but instead a player needs to use strategy and planning to avoid getting in over one’s head. The wonderful hotkey bar across the entire bottom of the screen was very helpful and well thought out. Kudos to Blizzard for making such a great interface. The screen is not all cluttered up like it is in most games.

The game runs on a 24-hour clock, so it is dark nearly half the time. Blizzard wisely chose to not make the game black as night in most locations. It is possible to play effectively in caves and other usually extremely dark areas, without benefit of an external light. I thought this was a very wise decision and really enjoyed playing in those locations for the first time ever in an MMORPG. Some players complain that it is too bright. I would say to them: Turn down your Gamma control in the game if you like. Many of us do not have your young night-vision, and we are paying customers too. I think that Blizzard got this part just right.

The quest system in this game is better than I have ever seen. I actually liked doing quests, something I haven’t previously enjoyed. Also, quests give lots of experience, and since they can usually be done on a casual basis, they don’t require the same level of one-track focus that they do in other games I have played.

During this “way too short” Stress Test, I decided to try a variety of different characters and locations, so played the following characters: Night Elf Druid, lvl 12; Tauren Hunter, lvl 13; Human Mage, lvl 8; Human Warlock, lvl 6; Gnome Warlock, lvl 6; Troll Shaman, lvl 6. Unfortunately, I have a full-time job and could only devote about 40 hours a week to the game. The initial leveling rate is quite quick, with it slowing down a lot at about level 12. Just about right, IMO.

The game is bug-free, for the most part. It is way more bug-free than SWG is even today. I would be willing to pay a subscription now, if it would “get me my game back!”. There are only two problems I see with this game:

1. Even though the Stress Test ended at 6pm Sunday evening, three days later I am still going through withdrawal and still have no desire to play on my two City of Heroes and three SWG accounts.

2. World of Warcraft is still not out, so my pre-ordered copy hasn’t arrived, nor do I know when that will happen. The sooner, the better, IMO. There is no doubt in my mind that this game will be way more popular that EQ2, which I also plan to try. Hopefully WoW will arrive first.

I for one really appreciate these Reviews that Amazon has. I find them very helpful. The only problem I see with them is that there are only FIVE stars in the rating system. This is a shame, for World of Warcraft certainly deserves a TEN.

Review by Seth Mclagan:

I just spent the last week playing the World of Warcraft Stress Test Beta, and I can tell you that it was better than I expected. Even though the game wasn’t finished, it still has many features that make it head and shoulders above every other MMORPG I’ve played.

Now, I, like many others, have been waiting in ancicipation for this game to come out, and when I had the chance to play the stress test, I was elated. Considering the majority of my MMOG experience is in EverQuest, I will list a few of the improvements (at least what I see as improvements) over the MMORPG “norm.”

1) Experience from completing quests is noticable, and the rewards from completing them are worthwhile. I was always frustrated with EverQuest’s quest structure, and the only reason to do a quest was for the item quested for, not for the experience gain. In WoW, it is possible to gain more experience from completing a quest than from killing a monster.

2) Experience progress is anything but vague. Every time a character kills a monster or completes a quest, the experience points are clearly given, and a meter with the character’s progress within a level is clearly marked with numbers. So it’s impossible not to tell how much experience killing a monster was worth. No more questionable meters with random values.

3) The world is easy to get around in. And it doesn’t take an hour to get where you need to be, if you know where you’re going. This was one of my biggest problems with EverQuest, because, as a semi-casual player, sometimes I don’t have the time to run for an hour to complete a quest, or, in some cases, die, then have to make a corpse run and take twice as long as it originally was supposed to take. Which leads me to my next point.

4) Death is reasonable. If your character dies, its ghost spawns at the NEAREST graveyard, so there is no need to manually bind your character somewhere. Also, there is no XP loss if you choose to run your character over to its corpse. In my opinion, the death system is one of the best, as you can choose to lose XP by ressurecting right at the graveyard, or just run to your character’s corpse and revive there with no experience loss. And before you can ressurect your character in a graveyard, it will let you know exactly how much XP will be lost. This replaces the 3 hours of grinding time needed to replace the lost XP.

5) An XP grind is perfectly possible, but not necessary. It is very possible to level up consistently without having to play for 5-7 hours a day. Between XP from killing monsters and the great quest completion XP, I was able to level a character to 17 in 3 days of semi-casual play. Now granted, those were the first 17 and the easiest, but it’s also possible to gain a level a day, almost unheard of in EverQuest.

To make a long story short, this will be a great game, but there is still a lot of work needed to make it release-ready. Since there is no official word yet on its release, I wouldn’t hold my breath, but it’s certainly something to keep an eye on.

-Bullroar

Buy World of Warcraft now for only $ 12.50!

World Of Warcraft Expansion: Burning Crusade

Blizzard Entertainment took online role playing by storm with their hit title, World of Warcraft. With mind-boggling improvements in graphics, gameplay networking, and interface — really every category — this game became the crown prince of the genre. World of Warcraft players will be excited by the approaching release of the new expansion pack: World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade. This pack expands the already massive, award-winning multiplayer online role-playing game by tremendous bounds, adding new races, lands, battlegrounds, professions and items, and much, much more. Although no release date has been set, here is sample of what you can expect from The Burning Crusade.

The Burning Crusade is the highly anticipated, unreleased expansion pack for Blizzard’s “World of Warcraft.”

What lies in Medivh’s tower? View larger.

Blood Elves emerge as a new race in The Burning Crusade. View larger.

The Blood Elves seek the golden destiny that has been promised to them. View larger.

Warcraft’s newest continent: Outland. View larger.

Once a beautiful land, Outland has been ravaged by war. View larger.

Outland is a vital strategic location. View larger. The expansion pack features an increase in the level cap to 70. There are two new playable races, including the magical Blood Elves that you can read more about below. The other race has not yet been released by Blizzard. There will be new starting zones in Quel’Thalas and beyond. Another eye-opening addition is the entirely new, unexplored continent of Outland that is reachable through the Dark Portal. Plus, you’ll find many new high-level dungeons to explore in Azeroth, Outland,

  • This game requires a monthly fee, and an internet connection to play
  • Two new playable races, including the magical Blood Elves
  • An entirely new continent, Outland, can be reached through the Dark Portal
  • Hundreds of new quests, items, monsters, and more
  • Pack increases the level cap to 70

Rating: (out of 180 reviews)

List Price: $ 29.99
Price: $ 17.00

World Of Warcraft Expansion: Burning Crusade Reviews

Review by Bobbie Lynn:

This expansion pack introduces the new continent of Outland. This continent can only be accessed with a character that is at least level 58. If you’re either just starting to play World of Warcraft, or you have no characters even close to level 58, you may just want to wait to buy the expansion at a later time.

However, the expansion also grants you access to two new races, the Draenei (Alliance) and the Blood Elves (Horde). You won’t be able to create characters of either of these races if you don’t have the expansion. So, if you want to play one of them you’ll need to get it. If you’re a new player who’s just trying out the game, I’d suggest just getting the basic version and playing one of the original races, rather than spending the extra before you even know whether you like the game.

You should also be warned that if you’re upgrading from the original version of the game, even if your copy is already fully patched, you’ll have to install the patches again after installing Burning Crusade. This is because they printed the CDs with version 2.0 of the client you use to play the game, but they’ve issued patches after that which you need to log into the server (up to version 2.05 as of this writing). If you look in the Patches sub-folder of your World of Warcraft folder on your computer, you should already have some of the patches present and be able to simply double click them to install. If you were to try to log in before doing that, you’ll have to redownload the patch before it installs instead, which will naturally take more time.

Some people have complained about lag, crashes, and lines to log into the more popular servers. These are all short term problems. A lot of people are very excited about the expansion, and so there are far more players than usual logged in at once, which is straining the servers. Give it a week or two after release and it should begin to settle down.

For the basic version of WoW, the level cap is 60. If you install the expansion, the cap is increased to 70. If you have a level 60 character and want to continue to advance, you MUST upgrade your account with the expansion pack.

Additional level brackets for the Battlegrounds (Player vs Player areas) have been added to accomodate the new higher levels in the game. Also, a new battleground called Eye of the Storm has been made available for characters of level 61 and above. Additionally, around the zones of the new Outland continent, there are PvP tasks you can perform such as taking over control of towers, with the faction that controls all of the towers in a zone gaining a small bonus such as a 5% increase to damage anywhere in that zone.

They’ve also added a number of new instances/dungeons. The new ones have two settings, allowing you to go through them at either ‘normal’ difficulty, or ‘heroic’ difficulty. The heroic setting makes the enemies tougher, and provides increased treasure rewards. This keeps the instances useful for advancement over a larger span of levels than would normally be the case.

Most players will find that, as they do quests in Outland, they quickly begin to get armor that’s superior to what they’ve previously been using. The monetary rewards in the new areas are also increased. Additionally, professions have been expanded to cover the additional levels in the game and tailoring has been expanded to include specialties similar to the way blacksmithing and leatherworking work.

Flying mounts are available on the continent of Outland for those who purchase them. However, these are not available to be used in the two original continents. This is because those areas were designed with the intention that they would only be accessed from the ground and a lot of work would have been required to make all of the quests and visuals work as intended if characters were permitted to fly around freely.

Be cautious about buying this item used. Each copy of the expansion includes a key code that is required to upgrade your account to allow access to the new content. If you buy a used copy of the software where the seller has already used that key to upgrade his account, you’ll still be able to install the software upgrade, but the lack of an unused key will mean that you won’t be able to apply the upgrade to your account that’s required to actually access the new content.

If you install the expansion on a computer where more than one account is used (for example, if you and your spouse each has your own account) then you can only use the key to upgrade one of those accounts. The other account will continue to work, but it will not be given access to the expansion pack content. Therefore, you need to obtain one expansion pack for each account you or your household has if you want to access the new content on all of them.

Edit: As of January 22, 2007 Blizzard has announced on their forums that they’re working on allowing players who already upgraded using the basic expansion to then also upgrade using the collector’s edition in order to get the limited edition pet. You’ll have to call Blizzard’s billing service line with the unused collector’s edition expansion key, so it’s slightly more work than upgrading directly with the CE, but it can now be done.

Review by Robert Rowland:

For those of you who are wondering if you should buy the BC expansion and how it is faring on the live servers, let me put your mind at ease. The servers are up, the game is wonderful, and the new content puts the original content of WoW to shame. This is an expansion that Blizzard should stand up and be proud of!

Contrary to other players experiences, I played the expansion for about 10 hours of the first day of its official live release (not the beta), and it is not buggy. The lag in the Outland can be a bit much at times, but then again when every level 60 on your server is in one zone trying to do quests, what do you expect? The mobs are constantly respawning at a rate so fast that once you kill the mob a respwan happens almost instantly (due to the frequency of kills in the zone). I have seen only one “evade” mob bugging out, and been disconnected twice in 10 hours, each time for less than a minute. With the score and breadth of the expansion, these are small problems that will not hamper your gameplay in the least (unless you are a Mr. Grumpy-Pants).

The bottom line: buy the expansion if you play Warcraft. You won’t regret it.

Buy World Of Warcraft Expansion: Burning Crusade now for only $ 17.00!

SteelSeries Limited-Edition Zboard Keyset Wrath of the Lich King

This SteelSeries Zboard Limited Edition Keyset (WotLK) is customized for the World of Warcraft® expansion, Wrath of the Lich King®, but will also work together with any other World of Warcraft® PC game. After mounting the keyset to the SteelSeries Zboard base, the gaming experience will enhance drastically due to specific keys assigned for Raiding and Player vs. Player (PvP) gameplay. Strategical placement of color-coded labelled keys and one-touch macros for frequent commands like roll, duel and invite, will help provide immersion, mastery of the game and help increase the users actions per minute (APM).

  • Compatible with any World of Warcraft® PC game
  • Color-coded labeled keys for commonly used commands
  • One-touch macros for raiding and PvP gameplay
  • Requires Zboard Gaming Keyboard.

Rating: (out of 15 reviews)

List Price: $ 19.99
Price: $ 15.12

SteelSeries Limited-Edition Zboard Keyset Wrath of the Lich King Reviews

Review by Gerry Strafford:

Let me first say that I agree with Carlee, having reviewed the description for this item if you were not already aware of how the ZBoard works, this is misleading. This product is merely a “keyset” for the ZBoard. The ZBoard base has all the wires and connectors to your computer, and your keysets can be lifted out and changed on a game-by-game basis (or the regular keyset layout included with the base.) They make quite a few variations of the keysets for different games.

That being said, and having been a ZBoard user for some time, I greatly enjoy the layout and functionality of this keyset. I have often found myself at a loss when returning to regular keyboards at friends houses since I am so used to the (vastly improved) layout offered on my ZBoard.

Review by D. Moring:

This product requires a Zboard for use. The product on Amazon.com states this nowhere. While it does show that buyers frequently buy a Zboard, if you are unfamiliar with Zboards you most likely would not realize this. I ordered this product at the beginning of December as a Christmas present, and it didn’t arrive until two weeks after its original estimated delivery date, which was long after Christmas. I was ok with the delay until I opened the package to find it wasn’t what I thought it was. I have no idea how good the product is, because I can’t use it. Maybe I should have just bought it directly from WOW. This was a disapointing performance on Amazon’s part.

Buy SteelSeries Limited-Edition Zboard Keyset Wrath of the Lich King now for only $ 15.12!

World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Collector’s Edition

The Lich King Arthas has set in motion events that could lead to the extinction of all life on Azeroth. With the armies of the undead and the necromantic power of the plague threatening to sweep across the land, only the mightiest heroes can oppose the Lich King’s will and end his reign of terror for all time. Learn the craft of spell augmentation with the new Inscription profession. Brave the harsh new continent of Northrend, the icy domain of the Lich King. Engage in epic siege warfare, deploying mighty siege engines to lay waste to destructible buildings in your path. Transform your hero’s look with new character-customization options, including new hairstyles and dances. Explore perilous new dungeons filled with some of the deadliest creatures — and greatest treasuresWorld of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King You’ve turned the tide against the demonic evils of Outland. Now the Lich King Arthas has set in motion events that will lead to the extinction of all life on Azeroth. With the undead legions of the Scourge threatening to sweep across the land, you must strike at the heart of the frozen abyss and end the Lich King’s reign of terror for all time… Rise as a Death Knight:
Master the necromantic powers of the Death Knight-World of Warcraft’s first Hero Class. Create a new Death Knight character with a starting level of 55 and break the chains of the Lich King to forge your own destiny. Battle to Level 80:
Power your way through new quests and dungeons as you seize ever greater abilities. Assault the terrifying Wrathgate, war in Lake Wintergrasp, uncover the secrets of Dalaran reborn, and much more. Brave the Lich King’s Domain:
Discover

  • Master the necromantic powers of the Death Knight — World of Warcraft’s first Hero class
  • Learn craft of spell augmentation with new Inscription profession
  • Explore vast new continent and perilous dun filled with deadly creatures
  • Transform hero’s look with new character-customization options
  • Requires the orginal World of Warcraft game (sold separately)

Rating: (out of 50 reviews)

List Price: $ 69.99
Price: $ 99.94

World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Collector’s Edition Reviews

Review by Harrison Brock Schaerr:

for a fraction of the price that alcohol, cocaine, or acid will…

And therefore, represents a quality value to all those in the market for addictive substances.

Review by C. Weathers:

You can all see from the product details what comes in the box, so I won’t rehash it all for you, but one thing not mentioned is that in the special pack of cards for the trading card game, I got one “loot” card with a scratch-off code you can use to get stuff in the game. That was pretty sweet. Also the pictures of the mouse pad do not do it justice. My wife told me if I get the dragon pet in game, that she gets the mouse pad. It’s very high quality, and looks amazing, almost like they used holographic type paint for it.

The gameplay itself is great. I’ve been so busy playing my new Death Knight and leveling their trade skills, my own lvl 70’s fishing, and cooking… and alchemy… getting achievement points that were released in v3.0.2 prior to the launch etc. I’ve only hit 72. I did however take the first day to just run around and look at everything. The world design is amazing. It’s all themed around cold climate except the southern parts of the two starting areas, but, it’s not like you’re going to run around and look at the same thing from beginning to end, there is tons of zone variety. Crystalsong Forest is my favorite so far, I plan to spend a lot of time there for sure.

UK and the Nexus are the first two instances, they are solid. UK is like a cross between a really big Shadowfang Keep and Deadmines. Nexus is like… geeze… I dunno… a blue Underbog crossed with Tempest Keep. So they definitely made it a point to distinguish this content from old world just like they did with Outland in The Burning Crusade.

They added a bunch of new enemy and neutral NPC models to the game, which is nice. I was disappointed with the rehash and redesign of several old world mobs in TBC. Most of what I’ve seen in Wrath so far is all new, and that’s definitely a welcome change.

*EDIT* The same can also be said for the quests. It’s still mostly, gathering and mob farming, but there are a lot more, “go here, use this item to do x” quests as well as some completely new quests that center around a new vehicle engine. There’s an alliance quest in Howling Fjord where you get in an airplane, actually pilot the plane around an open mine picking up bags of minerals with a grappling hook, then flying them back up to the top to drop them off. There’s another in the Borean Tundra where you hide in a mine cart, wait to get carted behind enemy lines, get on their boat and use a huge cannon to fire into several enemy brigades. You actually get to aim the cannon and there are a couple different actions while in the cannon. This new system has thus far proven to be a welcome addition to the typical mmo game play. *END EDIT*

All in all I am very pleased with this collector’s edition, and would recommend it to anyone with a few extra bucks to spend, that enjoys extra “real world” loot so to speak.

Buy World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Collector’s Edition now for only $ 99.94!

SteelSeries Special-Edition World of Warcraft Mouse

Designed by Blizzard® and SteelSeries specifically for World of Warcraft®, The World of Warcraft® MMO Gaming Mouse provides remarkable benefit to all World of Warcraft® gamers, regardless of level or play style. The mouse can be customized to fit the users personal preferences; the illumination feature allows for up to 16 million colors, programmability of all 15 buttons via an intuitive and easy to use drag and drop interface. The fluid integration of software with hardware will provide the user with an amazing in-game experience featuring superior performance, comfort and control. The World of Warcraft® MMO Gaming Mouse is fully scalable to meet and exceed the requirements of even the most discerning World of Warcraft® gamer

  • 16 million illumination choices with 3 intensity levels
  • Over 130 predefined macros and posibility to create your own
  • World¿s first gaming mouse designed exclusively for World of Warcraft®
  • A total of 15 programmable buttons
  • Save 10 profiles in armory… Macros up to 160 characters

Rating: (out of 46 reviews)

List Price: $ 99.99
Price: $ 72.99

SteelSeries Special-Edition World of Warcraft Mouse Reviews

Review by Jennifer Leising:

Watch Video Here: http://www.amazon.com/review/R2PKXZ0OWBZUDJ I had written a hands-on review on my blog, since (even though I ordered and received this mouse from Amazon), I was unable to review on this mouse since it was incorrectly categorized as “Preorder” for quite some time.

[…]

First of all, here are the “pros” of the mouse:

* It has a LOT of buttons

* It glows and has shiny colors

* It looks expensive, and has a little WoW logo on the plastic, as well as a WoW-skinned software UI.

Here are the cons:

* It utilizes delays, loops, and timers and ENCOURAGES users to leave the delays on by default. This is against the WoW Terms of Use and can get your account banned. If you manually turn them off and know what you’re doing, you’ll be fine.

* The “macro system” is just insertion of keys into the keyboard buffer. That means if you want to “stopattack” a mob that just got sheeped or CC’ed, the keys will “collide” with any other keys you’re typing at the time (including your “wasd” movement keys) and will type them directly into the in-game chat buffer. (see video) This is the exact same macro functionality as any other macro-capable non-WoW mouse.

* Names with extended ASCII characters are not recognized by the macro software. That means those with extended ASCII or from non-US locales won’t be able to utilize the armory feature within the software.

* The software does not come shipped in the box. If you do not have the internet for some ungodly reason and plan on using this mouse on an offline PC game, you are out of luck.

The “not good, not bad” parts:

* The mouse (at least IMHO) is uncomfortable for those with small hands. I am a female gamer with small hands (5’2″, 100 lbs) — extended play sessions are not possible with this mouse since it is designed for a larger hand.

For more details, feel free to visit my blog post review or view the video. I’ve gotten a few not-so-friendly comments somewhat along the lines of “LOL N00B. Only a dumb girl would fat-finger mouse buttons while they’re chatting lolz pwnt!”. Of course, since I don’t expect every video commenter on youtube to possess an IQ, I’ll politely point out that the video is what’s called an “example”, and that the real-world scenarios (/stopattacking a sheep, /assisting another character, whatnot) would collide with your movement keys (wasd, q and e) providing you with a command much like “/stopatwwwwwack” or “/assqqqqqqissssssst”

As a 15-button mouse, you’re not going to find anything like it on the market right now. If you’re unconcerned with the built-in macro functionality, feel free to utilize this mouse with single-character keybindings (i.e. “f” as an in-game keybinding for assist instead of “/assist”). However, as the feature-rich designed-for-World-of-Warcraft mouse that was touted with such specially co-designed features, I’m astonished that the macro system is identical to other mice on the market, and that the mouse’s user guide would recommend breaking the WoW’s terms of use.

It gets 2 stars for misleading advertising, continually pushed preorder dates that continued even after I received my 2-month preorder, and the lack of “designed-for-WoW” functional and non-cosmetic features.

As a 15-button mouse, it gets 3 stars — I hear it fails at keybinding key combinations (such as CTRL+5 or SHIFT+4), but the multitude of buttons might still be appealing. If steelseries had marketed this mouse as a general gaming mouse, they’d have had none of the problems with false advertising and might’ve gotten a bigger market since I don’t know many MMO gamers who need 15-button mice.

EDIT: April 27, 2010

I noticed a new button under the main menu->Interface options that mentions “Detect Steelseries WoW Mouse”… it may be that FINALLY, WoW had added the advertised special functionality that was advertised for us a year ago who paid far too much to sit on a ridiculously long waiting list for something that didn’t even work as advertised…. So MAYBE this actually works correctly now. I wouldn’t know – I haven’t used the Steelseries mouse since this review, nor would I (since it’s not comfortable, so perhaps someone with the current WoW patch and this mouse could write an updated review regarding the macro issue.

However, there are also new mice on the market, like the Razer Naga, that include a LOT of bindable buttons in a much more comfortable form (at least, in my opinion). So do your market research and decide whether you really want to throw money at a company (Steelseries) that has treated its customers to a poor quality mouse with both hardware and software issues, poor ergonomics, and unreliable release dates/pre-order handling.

I’m likely to buy a Razer Naga in the near future, but in the meanwhile, I’ve already given away my Steelseries mouse to my boyfriend since his mouse broke and he just needed a basic point-and-click device… you know, a basic mouse. And yes, he’s a main tank for the highest progression guild on our server – and while he could use as many bindable keys as he can get, I don’t think he’s even using any of the hard-to-reach keys on this Steelseries mouse.

Best of luck!

-Jennifer

Review by Christopher Lazzaro:

You’ve probably already read that this mouse is, in general, good for Warcraft players and bad for virtually anyone else. While the mouse has some redeemable stats hardware-wise, DPI, report rate, yadda yadda, all the features that would interest a WoW player are disappointing.

The “Macros” that are build into the mouse cause the text box in the game to come up and the mouse actually types your macro letter by letter into the chat frame. Obviously this makes those macros useless, since you can probably type them faster manually. The other flaw with the macros was that when you build a custom macro and removed the time delay between keyboard inputs the macro was typed too quickly or inaccurately or incompletely to execute.

The mouse is only capable of actuating buttons on your main action bar or main pet bar. So if you have buttons on other bars you need to use a workaround, and map the mouse buttons to keyboard strokes and map your action buttons in game to the same keystrokes. It actually works very well in game, but you need to get past the idea that you’re now setting your game up around the limitations of your mouse and that those buttons will still produce the same useless keystroke combos outside of the game. Alt+Shift+Q isn’t all that useful outside of WoW now is it?

The software itself was a bit difficult to use, even for a seasoned WoW player. My biggest issue ended up being frustration over setting or resetting the basic mouse button functions we’re used to with any other mouse on earth. I remapped the “browser back” button and there was nothing in the documentation to tell me how to get that function back. (Which you find in a drop down menu by right clicking the button in the on screen diagram of the mouse. But I got the feeling that if I remapped the right click button that I’d be uninstalling and reinstalling to get that one back.)

The buttons themselves have shortcomings as well. The ring-finger button is 2 buttons on a rocker that must be pressed with the left side of the ring-finger. This is not a particularly sensitive part of a finger with no acclaim for it’s dexterity. Deciphering which of the 2 buttons you might be pressing at a given time was impossible and pushing the button required enough force to cause you to active some of the buttons on the opposite side of the mouse with your thumb. In the end, I ended up mapping both the ring-finger rocker buttons to the same function and gluing a piece of rubber to it so the button could be activated with a more natural motion, like a trigger (using the ring-finger) instead of a scissor motion between the middle and ring fingers, that alleviated the inadvertent activating of the thumb buttons.

The thumb buttons were difficult to use at best. To give you some idea about the size of hand I have, and I’m sorry this is the best I can come up with, when I select a glove size, I go for a large, but never XL, if that’s any indication. Or, I could choke someone with about a 19 inch neck. The number 4 thumb button on the rocker was out of reach without using two motions to spin the mouse in my palm a bit the reach for it. It was useless for gaming. The other 3 buttons on the 4-way thumb rocker activated an adjacent button roughly 85% of the times I clicked in game. The workaround I had to use was to disable the number 2 and number 4 buttons all together (The ones closest and furthest from the base of the thumb). The 2 traditional (browser fwd/back) thumb buttons are much further apart, horizontally, than on any mouse I’ve ever seen, but this isn’t a bad thing, it gives a bit of room so your thumb can feel its way between the 2 of them and the 4-way rocker slightly below them.

There are raised buttons on the inner edges of the 2 main, traditional mouse buttons, these are probably the most useful of any of the extra buttons on the mouse. If you have a 2 finger on top style, (left and right click with index and middle fingers, respectively) you might find they are positioned so that you want to use the extra raised buttons for primary and secondary click. They should have been placed further to the outsides of those buttons to keep them out from under finger constantly, but the elevation makes them obvious and after an hour of 2 of gaming I found I could cope with them.

The mousewheel is grippy and the force to active the wheelbutton is fine. You won’t be spinning this wheel to navigate large menus or text documents though, as it has no inertia to speak of.

2 more customizable buttons near the mousewheel are safe from accidental clicking and good for DPI-on-the-fly functions but unless you’re double jointed you won’t be using them for frequent clicks.

The back half of the mouse sits on what amounts to rubber wings. The elevates your hand from the mouse surface. Which is great for keeping your grubby mitts off your pristine mousepad, but for those of us whose little fingers play a stabilizing roll in our gaming the wings are great for making us feel more detached from the mousing experience. I was able to cut a portion of the right wing off with metal shears without altering the glide of the mouse so the little finger could be grounded again.

The last flaw was the surface of the mouse. It’s smoothe plastic. Very smoothe. So smoothe in fact that I couldn’t keep the mouse in my hand when I had to pick it up off the pad to reposition it. Or I could squeeze really hard and activate any number of buttons. The point is, gamers lift their mice frequently, and this surface is slippery. It seems like there wasn’t any thought put into the surface.

The LEDs are useless. She is not going to sleep with you even though your ‘mouse is so cute, it looks like it’s breathing.’ Not only that but your hand will cover them entirely while playing, so no 3rd parties are going to write a useful program for them. What they did manage to accomplish was push the mouse over the power rating my g15 keyboard’s USB hub was capable of supporting, even as the only device attached. This meant the cord, at 2 meters, was literally a drawback on a big desk.

All in all, the mouse is clunky to use with WoW, its buttons are poorly positioned, the button rockers are terrible ideas (think: very tiny Sega Genesis controller D-pad when you imagine the thumb rocker), and the mouse is too hard to keep in an average hand. So unless you’re a collector or you have a gargantuan hand with bomb technician dexterity and purpose-built gamer callouses you’re going to have a lot of heartache with this mouse and accurately pressing its many buttons.

Buy SteelSeries Special-Edition World of Warcraft Mouse now for only $ 72.99!

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