It's the eve of World of Warcraft's Cataclysm, and already speculation abounds as to where players will go next. With most of the known world already revealed, including the Outland and Northrend, destroying and rebuilding the known world was the logical step to make. Where should players go afterwards, though? Blizzard's Lead Systems Designer Greg Street says they're approaching the fourth expansion with a, "new continent approach."
On top of that, Greg also believes it would be worth revisiting the Outlands and Northrend to better tie in the story, post-Cataclysm and Deathwing:
"...we have this weird story now where you almost go back in time when you hit the Burning Crusade and Lich King content. We're going to have to do something to bring that up to speed. You're hearing all about Deathwing and all the destruction and then you leave Azeroth and go to Outland and they're talking about Illidin. That's a little bit of a non-sequitur, particularly for new players."
Exploring Azeroth after the Shattering is certain to be exciting, but it is certainly going to be interesting to see how content transitions between Azeroth content and the first expansion in the Outland. Fans who've already played through the content before might likely never notice the abrupt change of plot, but new players certainly might feel out of place. Really though, so long as the content is fun it shouldn't be too troubling, and definitely not so terrible as to justify an entirely new expansion to revamp the content.
No, it's definitely a smart choice to open a new world for Warcraft players to explore. There are certain to be any number of fans already pining for more, more, more. Where will Blizzard go, though?
There's very few places left to explore on Azeroth proper, though it's said there may be more continents on the opposite side of the planet? That may be a stretch though, because there are other areas fans likely want ASAP, including the Emerald Dream and the Great Sea including the Maelstrom. Other ideas include further exploration of the Twisting Nether, underground areas of Azeroth, or a time traveling romp into ancient Kalimdor for the War of the Ancients. Whatever Blizzard decides will likely be exciting.
Are you already thinking about the fourth World of Warcraft expansion, Ranters? Or do you have your eyes focused on Cataclysm and nothing else? Where would you like to see Blizzard go next?