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Blizzard: Mists of Pandaria is “no joke”

Tuesday, 25th October 2011 01:51 GMT By Brenna Hillier

World of Warcraft’s upcoming Mists of Pandaria expansion is no walk in the petting zoo, according to Blizzard’s Chris Metzen.

“This is no joke. This is not a throw-away silly-silly ha ha funny expansion set; it is absolutely the next vital chapter and as things ratchet up, they’re gonna get really gnarly,” the vice president of creative development said at a Blizzcon 2011 panel on Saturday, as reported by Gamefront.

An April Fool’s Joke involving the pandaren has some World of Warcraft players affronted by what they perceive as a flippant attitude to the serious business of the game, but Metzen explained that the pandaren have a much longer history.

“There’s no way we’re gonna build an expansion set based on an April Fools Joke,” he scoffed.

“What you guys may not know is, our senior art director, Sam Didier, started drawing these guys years ago. Was it in Warcraft III, we included Chen Stormstout in Frozen Throne, maybe, in the Orc campaign? Was it after that? I can’t remember anymore. But these guys are not a joke. This is an idea that we’ve been thinking about for years. It’s one of our favorite flavors of Warcraft.”

Metzen said the events of the pandaren campaign are “serious as a heart attack”.

“They’re really going to make a difference in the history of the world; it’s definitely not a light, throw-away expansion set in any way. It’s about as rich a kit as anything we’ve put out so far and it’s definitely got its intrigues and its dangers and its drama. It ain’t armies of the dead and it ain’t demons fallin’ out of the sky, but it’s definitely gonna have some flavor and some teeth.”

“I think a lot of people that aren’t buying into the idea right away don’t realize the depth of the race,” lead quest designer Dave Kosak agreed in an interview later.

“I actually think the pandaren as a culture are really neat. I would encourage you, if you aren’t really climbing onto the idea, to check out what’s there, what’s in the game, because the pandaren are fascinating, they’re fun — they live hard, they work hard, they play hard, they drink hard, they nap hard. they don’t do anything halfway. So they’re a very fun, very lively, vibrant people.”

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11 Comments

  1. Judicas

    Thank god someone pointed out to Chris Metzen where they originated from because he sure as hell didn’t know during the Blizzcon stream. He said in an interview right after announcing the expansion that they originated from the April Fools day joke. Glad to see him eat his words.

    #1 3 years ago
  2. Se_7_eN

    They are a joke, they have no background WHAT SO EVER… Wow, they were in Warcraft 3, for like what? 1 or 2 battles? And there was only a handful in the battle itself.
    Blizzard used these guys as an April Fools joke wallpaper themselves back in the day and now are getting bit in the ass because they have completely ruined this game, along with the “Lore” of Warcraft that they used to have.
    Sad when your own Vice President of Creative Development have no idea behind the lore of the characters your xpack is based off of.

    #2 3 years ago
  3. ultramega

    This is why I fear a Warcraft IV may never be possible, as much as it is the only game I want from Blizzard… they royally fucked everything up with WoW.
    *sigh*

    #3 3 years ago
  4. TheWulf

    @3 – Keep in mind that this is Nu Blizzard. Blizzard changed radically when Vivendi took over and a lot of people left. Hell, one subdivision of Blizzard (Blizzard North) died completely. What remains is a festering carcass, wheezing, and perpetually grasping for every last coin of cash it can.

    The Blizzard that we knew, of Lost Vikings, of Warcraft III, of Diablo II fame? …is long dead.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. Jarvgrimr

    @ 1,2,3,4 -

    Well done on fitting the stereotype of contemporary bitchy-nerdery. Sprouting your opinions as if they are facts.

    Seeing as Metzen & Samwise have been friends since WC2 days, and are both heavily invested in the lore of the series, they may know what is what. Or have a better idea of what eachother were thinking/doing than some internet troll.

    Samwise has had a long-running “Panda” theme and has had art that was WarCraft-less but involved Panderan like characters. From there, he started to sneak them into WarCraft art as a signature/easter egg. This does not make it an “April Fool’s” race, none of you have any idea of what Blizzard were changing or adding to the lore behind the scenes.

    Show some respect for their IP and what they want to do with it.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. TheWulf

    @5 – I must congratulate your use of irony and satire. I almost took you seriously. That would have been embarrassing for me. But I can see from the content of your comment that it was a well veiled joke, as no sane person in their right mind would hold up lore about Kung-Fu Pandas as though it were some kind of religious standard to be so zealously and piously upheld.

    Good job. You almost had me. You clever hipster, you.

    #6 3 years ago
  7. John117

    @1,2,3,4 and 6

    People have been asking for Pandaren for years, me included. Atleast the Pandaren actually had a mercenary hero for sale in the local tavern compared to a certain space goats which was much discussed in the first expansion when playing WC3… And Pandarens are bloody awesome, when the expansion comes everyone will make a panda and run around as monks while they kick all the other classes for months until Blizz decides to nerf em to ground lvl like they did with DK’s.

    #7 3 years ago
  8. _LarZen_

    When Blizzard has to comment that the expansion is no joke it says alot.

    #8 3 years ago
  9. silkvg247

    Pandaren monks are fucking cool.

    I guess people would have preferred generic large event #458 and generic race #423 instead. Because it’s normal.

    #9 3 years ago
  10. GwynbleiddiuM

    So, how come the Tuskar isn’t a joke, but pandaren is? How come murloc, kobold and gnoll aren’t jokes but the pandaren suddenly is? We have race of humanoid cows, and they’re pretty popular, but pandarens are jokes to many people. It offends me how close-minded ya’ll are.

    #10 3 years ago
  11. Ireland Michael

    @10 I don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t create an entire expansion set around murlocs.

    Better not give Blizzard any ideas…

    Its not Pandarens that are a joke. It’s their suddenly visual reinterpretation as the Kung Fu Panda of the World of Warcraft universe that is.

    #11 3 years ago

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