Posted on March 19, 2012, Phil Hornshaw Metzen Reveals Pandaria’s Patch Conclusion: The Siege of Orgrimmar
Chris Metzen looks tired.
In fact, everybody present at Blizzard’s press event looks a little run down as the 10 a.m. presentation to kick off eight hours slowly begins. From the looks of things, the World of WarCraft development team has been hard at work, slugging away at the upcoming expansion, Mists of Pandaria. It’s immediately apparent that the expansion has come a long way since BlizzCon 2011 in November, growing larger and more complete by the day, and at 10 a.m. on a Wednesday, it appears the coffee is still working caffeine in to the various bloodstreams of developers and journalists alike.
Or maybe the reason Metzen, Blizzard’s senior vice president of story and franchise development, is tired of having to explain why people should be more excited about Pandaria, and less skeptical about it.
“This expansion set is not a joke; it’s not light and fluffy,” Metzen intones, reiterating a point he hit hard and often at BlizzCon. “We got to debut them (the Pandaren race) for April Fools, and I think that because of that people think that we feel it’s innately comedic. No — april fools was just a fun opportunity to show the idea.”
Metzen is referring to the April Fools Day joke in which Blizzard debuted the Pandaren as the “fifth race” playable in WarCraft III — a gag that, obviously, wasn’t really indicative of what happened in that game. But since debuting the Pandaren as the playable race in the next expansion, as well as a new world to explore in the hidden island of Pandaria, and a story that didn’t center on a major villain or a world-ending catastrophe, many WoW fans have been incredulous and critical about the idea.