World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King Preview

Game Industry News has dished up a preview of the upcoming World of Warcraft expansion Wrath of the Lich King.

The new crescent-shaped continent of Northrend contains ten zones, and has a landmass larger than Outland. Two of the zones, Borean Tundra and Dragonblight, are enormous and comparatively bigger than some of Outland’s largest zones. The environmental theme through-out most zones is of a rural and arctic tundra feel. One only has to look up and note the aurora borealis to know this is not Outland, or even old-world Azeroth. There are small pockets of urbanization but most are kept to small areas giving most zones an untouched and vast feel. While previewing the expansion the Lich King’s domain of Icecrown was unavailable. However in the northwestern part of Dragonblight the enormous Wrathgate which will eventually open to Icecrown was visible. This gate is massive and looks like the Black Gates from Lord of the Rings, only with a motif akin to the Lich King’s famed helmet.

Northrend also has otherworldly qualities such as the zones of Crystalsong Forest, Zul’drak, and Coldarra. Crystalsong is where the floating kingdom of Dalaran is located (Dalaran replaces Shattrath as the new sanctuary city for Northrend). A triangle-shaped object is position on the ground below Dalaran and will allow players to teleport up to Dalaran. You can also reach Dalaran via a flight path. And once you reach level 77 you can learn cold weather flying and fly to Dalaran on your own. Crystalsong’s ground around Dalaran is full of tree-shaped crystals that have been forming for hundred of years. Some have even broken off and seem to defy gravity as they hover near their trunks. The entire zone of Zul’drak is one big ancient Troll kingdom now overrun with Scourge and scourge-controlled Zul’drak Trolls. The zone architecture feels new and familiar at the same time. Finally Coldarra is a large island located in northwestern Boren Tundra. The area feels common except for the central cornerstone. There the Nexus exists. This broken hunk of snow and ice gushes forth blue magical energies from a temple below like some sort of broken oil well (not withstanding a very similar occurrence within Dragonblight).

Spotted on Blue’s News.

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