It’s incredible to think that the MMORPG that was released 16 years ago still reigns as the most popular option. We are, of course, referring to Blizzard’s flagship game, World of Warcraft.
GameCardWorld says that many games are old but are still played today, but WoW is on a whole other level, and there’s nobody in the MMORPG world that can parallel its popularity to date.
GameCardWorld will go through the history of the game to see how it got to where it is today.
Pre-World of Warcraft
Warcraft started as a series of video games in the RTS (Real-Time Strategy) genre, all of which were a continuation of the story from the first Warcraft: Orcs & Humans that was released in 1994. In 1995 Warcraft II: Tides of Darkness was released, and in 1996, the expansion Beyond the Dark Portal came out.
There was an additional expansion that came out in 1999, which basically introduced Battle.net and the option to play with other players online, which is where Warcraft’s competitive history begins.
In 2003 and 2004, we got Warcraft III: Reign of Chaos and Frozen Thrones, respectively. This game took the world by storm and spawned numerous mods like Tower Defence and, most prominently, DOTA (Defence of the Ancients) thanks to its robust world editor.
The entire story of Warcraft through the three RTS games and their expansions led to the release of World of Warcraft. Are you intrigued? You can get WoW at GameCardWorld.
World of Warcraft
In 2004, ten years after the first RTS release, Blizzard released World of Warcraft, the MMORPG, that would change the landscape of online gaming forever.
The game was quite challenging to play and required cooperation and coordination between players to get the best items and progress to the max level. There were no things that held the players’ hand throughout questing and dungeons like there are today. Quests were more descriptive and required orienting oneself in the game’s world. There was no mini-map or other aids.
Two factions, as was the tradition in Warcraft, were introduced – the Horde and the Alliance. Each came with fraction specific classes; the Horde had the Shaman, and the Alliance had the Paladin.
The game was so good that the reworked Classic version of WoW (released in 2019) still runs today parallel to the expanded game and with a lot of success. Of course, you can get it at GameCardWorld.
Now, expansions are a pretty tricky subject for WoW fans. A lot of people have an expansion they consider to be the best. Honestly, it all depends on what you’re into. They all increased level caps, and introduced new races or classes. New skills and spells were also added, along with new content, regions, monsters, end-game content, and much more.
- The Burning Crusade (2007)
- Wrath of the Lich King (2008)
- Cataclysm (2010)
- Mists of Pandaria (2012)
- Warlords of Draenor (2014)
- Legion (2016)
- Battle for Azeroth (2018)
- Shadowlands (Expected in 2020)
Which one is the best? Well, that depends on who you ask. Players that have been there since the beginning will throw shade on later expansions as they introduced many quality-of-life things into the game world, which was seen as catering to the “average Joe” who is unwilling to put in “the work” required to be considered a powerful in-game character.
Still, the last expansion, Battle for Azeroth, received a lot of criticism for incomplete development (which is something that WoW fans tend to forgive if it’s all ironed out at a later date) but also for the direction they took the story in.
There is this trend developing in WoW that Horde players have noticed when it comes to main villains in new expansions. There was quite a bit of outrage when Garrosh Hellscream was set up to be the main villain in Mists of Pandaria and again in Battle for Azeroth.
This was nothing compared to the fans’ reaction to the storyline in Battle for Azeroth and the similar faith befalling another horde leader and fan favorite, Sylvanas Windrunner.
Shadowlands is the next expansion, and it’s expected to be a great one and also to resolve the story around Sylvanas, who was a prominent character from Warcraft 3 onwards. Get it at GameCardWorld.
The World of Warcraft series has changed the online gaming landscape and, on top of that, remained a top choice for many gamers. It is also one of the few games out there that functions based on monthly subscriptions, and there don’t seem to be many complaints coming their way because of that.
World of Warcraft is the closest you can come to adventuring with your friends fighting dragons and ancient monsters, even Gods. It has been on top of the MMORPG world for years for a reason! If you want to try the game or get a friend to try it, check out GameCardWorld gift cards.