The day started with breakfast at Coco’s. It was surprisingly empty, but I guess it was a bit early for the average gamer crowd…a bit after 9am. Mike had banana pancakes, and I had bacon, eggs, country potatoes, and coffee cake. Service was great, as was the food.
Off to the convention center. We arrived a bit early, but the main stage was already full up for the opening ceremony. Instead, we went over to the Hearthstone stage, and got seats right near the front. The stage is AWESOME by the way. We saw it last year too, but it was no less awesome this year.
We watched the countdown to the opening ceremony, and then it began. So many awesome reveals! My thoughts on each:
- New Warcraft Charity Pet, Brightpaw: I loved this pet when I first saw it, though I wish it was a bit cuter…chibi like the Cinder Kitten or something. I’m glad all profits in December will be for Make-a-Wish!
- New Diablo Patch 2.4: Didn’t even know this was coming…glad to hear it! More on this later.
- Starcraft Mission Packs: I have not played Starcraft thus far, but I did recently buy the Complete Deluxe Edition, and will be playing the new co-op mode with Mike this weekend. That said, I currently have no excitement for the mission packs myself, since I have no idea how I’ll even like the main game (I don’t dislike RTS games, but it’s never really been the type of game I play, either). But I appreciate their continued support for a “finished” game at this point.
- Warcraft Movie Trailer: I’ve been fairly excited for the movie, because it will hopefully be a way for me to sort of see the basic story of Warcraft 1 (which I’ve never played). The trailer solidified that excitement. It looks very good! Some people say the Orcs don’t look good, but I think they’re good enough, and the story will be more important than “Durotan’s eyes look too human”. Can’t wait to see this!
- Heroes of the Storm: I didn’t really get what the whole Arena mode was about, but it looks interesting at least. I’m always for more modes. Greymane hero, awesome! Lunara was unexpected, but also welcomed! And then Cho’gall…oh. my. GOD. It sounds fun! And then the reveal that everyone at BlizzCon was getting him for free? WHOA. I love the community feel of this hero, and I can’t wait to spread the virus (now…to find people who need him :p). As for the new Towers of Doom battleground, I loved the Eternal Conflict ones with their different objectives. I can’t wait to see how this one plays out, considering you can’t even directly attack the core!
- Hearthstone: I am someone who would love to play Hearthstone, but a few things hold me back. First, The limited time seasonal card backs make me sad, because I missed the first 1-2 and now I don’t even want to try because I’m already missing some 🙁 Second, I’ve never been a huge CCG player. More of a collector than anything, but that’s been of physical cards. Anyway, the new League of Explorers adventure looks cute, and I’ll probably check it out as I have $20 in free credits from Google Rewards to spend. It has a different enough flair that I think it will be fun! (But what I really want out of Hearthstone is to be able to play co-op with Mike. 2v2 games would be great fun!)
- Overwatch: Great new heroes…everyone loves Mei and I’m no exception. D.Va is cute too, but I’ve never been one to play tanks in games. I have played a few in HotS, though, so maybe they will be fun in Overwatch as well. But I won’t really know until I can play! >_< Very happy to see release details. I don’t need it on console, but I can appreciate the option. As soon as I got home from the convention I pre-purchased the Origins Edition. Mike will get the full Collector’s Edition. Anyway, all the extra goodies…that Winston pet for WoW is ADORABLE. And Tracer in HotS? Ummmm…yes please!! Also very glad they’re adding in at least some skins. A nice bit of flair.
- World of Warcraft: Ohhhh boy. That Legion cinematic was so, so good! Not much was revealed during the opening ceremony for Warcraft other than that, but there was definitely plenty to come in the Warcraft panels over the course of the convention! They did also announce the pre-purchase, which I promptly did when I got home, and use the level 100 boost on my level 1 Night Elf Hunter, Ryadriel.
Legion World & Content Overview
After the great opening ceremony, we managed to make our way in to the main hall to see more of what’s in store for Legion. This overview had some awesome information and pictures! I love the sound of the huge 40-player scenario as the pre-Legion event. I hope there’s some awesome rewards from it!
All of the new zones look beautiful. I don’t know what to say. I can’t wait to explore them all! I love that questing will be less linear with the world scaling throughout leveling, so I can forge my own path a bit on each character I play through. The fact that end-game content will take me back out in to these zones is also exciting!
I’m pretty excited to hear more about the Challenge Modes for Legion. Having it be more about challenge than just “beat this timer with scaled down gear” should be fun. Being able to make it more difficult as you gear up? Also awesome. I love the idea of it being a complement or even a possible alternative to raiding.
Anyway…did somebody say updated Moonkin model? HELL YES! So fluffyyyyy!
And…the extra camera zoom/view distance we’re going to get? So beautiful!
After the panel we went over to check out the new Darkmoon Faire area to do some pin trading.
We had purchased Series 2 pins before the convention, and had 4 + 2 from last year to trade and complete our set. The line was a bit long to trade, maybe about 45 minutes. But it wasn’t bad, because we actually ended up doing a lot of trading in line!
The community feel here was really great, and even introverted people like Mike and myself got pretty in to it. Some people were there to complete their sets, while others were there to help others complete their sets! How nice of them 🙂 By the time we got to the front of the line to do the official pin-board trade, we only had one trade left to complete our set. We are now the proud owners of the full series 1 and 2 pins (well, besides the gold ones which we don’t care for, though do have some of)!
Blood & Treasure Diablo Panel
At this point, I was getting pretty tired, and I don’t remember much. I do know I like Diablo, and all of the changes they’ve been making have been great (as mentioned in my post 3 months ago 😉 ). I love the idea that we can basically rebirth our characters for the seasons, instead of making new duplicate classes once we’ve made everything. New zones are a plus, and an updated approach to set items! Hopefully our Legendary items will feel more awesome, instead of saying “okay cool, but I am going to replace it with a set item anyway.” Loving the quality of life improvements as well, such as having info in the tooltips if you’ve already Kanai’s Cubed an item. The whole “kill a bunch of enemies to get up a combo” thing also sounds fun (apparently something from console versions?). Anyway, I look forward to checking out this new patch!\
Overwatch: What’s New? Panel
It was then time for the final panel for us for the day, back over at the Main Stage. Sadly, my eye had been irritating me, so about half-way through the panel I closed my eyes a bit to relieve it….and I fell asleep! WTF? Regardless…of what I DID see, I loved it all! The statistics they shared from the first few days of beta were pretty interesting. The Hollywood map looks cute, but frankly I haven’t seen ny of the maps yet, so it wasn’t all THAT exciting? It took a closer look at the new characters. Mei and D.Va look interesting (and Mei is just sooo cute)! I can’t say much for Genji…I think I was asleep at that point. In any case, I can’t wait to get access to play! I’ve already ordered it…so let me play now! :p
At this point, we went back to the hotel. We had planned to watch the contests, but decided against it. There was no way we’d get close enough to the stage to see the costumes well anyway, which was what I really wanted to see. Will just watch the stream later! I did manage to catch a few cosplay photos, but not near enough. They usually hang out up front, but we didn’t go out there much.
Anyway, got our free pizza, relaxed, and slept in preparation for Day 2!