Tobold's Blog
Friday, February 11, 2005
WoW Journal - Day 1

The release day of the European version of World of Warcraft finds me strangely excited. I can't wait to get playing there. Utterly silly, because this is the same game I'm playing for months now. But a new server, and playing with a guild in my own time zone, are things I'm looking forward to.

I take the afternoon off as holiday from work, and drive directly from work to the shop. Great timing, in the shop the guy is just ripping open the cartons in which the game was just delivered. And they even got the English language version. I take the collectors edition, a huge heavy box.

At home the installation seems to take forever. Not quite as huge as EQ2, but still several Gigabyte on one DVD, or 4 CDs. Then I try to create an account, and get only a web page with error messages. I surf to the European official WoW site instead, and after several tries finally manage to create an account. Try to log into the game, and first have to endure another waiting period, downloading 40 MB of patch. The first 99% take 10 minutes to download, then I need another 5 minutes for the last 1%. Annoying.

Finally I'm able to launch the game. Meanwhile I checked my guild website, we are playing on the Runetotem server, PvE, English language, Horde side. I create a troll warrior named Raslebol, and get playing. The huge troll looks quite funny with his cute panda cub pet (added bonus from buying the collectors edition) following him around. I reach level 2 in no time, then the game crashes. Fortunately the only crash for the day.

Back online I continue to level quickly. The guild mates are there, and we already have our own chat channel. Private chat channels are a nice feature of WoW. A bit later we get the 10 people together needed to form the guild, The Order of the Rose Croix. Great.

The game feels strangely deserted. I get Cosmos running, downloading a tool from Curse Gaming to set the version to the right number. That allows me to run a census, which shows practically nobody from level 1 to 4, with the most players only already level 8 to 10. Less than 200 players on the horde side. A guild mate whose girlfriend is trying to create an account confirms the bad news for Blizzard: They had to take the account creation page down because it became overloaded and crashed. For hours nobody is able to create an account. They fix it only late at night.

Meanwhile I picked mining and blacksmithing as my tradeskills. I believe alchemy to be more useful, but thats what I took in the US version, and I want to try something new. Plus I'm the only blacksmith, and the only chain wearer, in the guild right now. I get lucky and find a recipe for making a Copper Chain Vest, manage to find a the Malachite needed for that, and thus arrive at my first "green" magic item, self-made. The end of the day finds me at level 10, with the highest level player on the server being an undead warrior of level 17.
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