^ "The Activision/Blizzard Merger: Five Key Points". Industry News. gamasutra.com. December 3, 2007. Archived from the original on December 21, 2008. Retrieved February 24, 2009. One of the intriguing things about the old Vivendi structure was that, even when Martin Tremblay joined to run Vivendi's publishing, it was specified: "World Of Warcraft creator Blizzard Entertainment has been designated a stand-alone division reporting to VU Games' CEO, and is not part of Tremblay's product development mandate.
Much of World of Warcraft play involves the completion of quests. These quests are usually available from NPCs. Quests usually reward the player with some combination of experience points, items, and in-game money. Quests allow characters to gain access to new skills and abilities, as well as the ability to explore new areas. It is through quests that much of the game's story is told, both through the quest's text and through scripted NPC actions. Quests are linked by a common theme, with each consecutive quest triggered by the completion of the previous, forming a quest chain. Quests commonly involve killing a number of creatures, gathering a certain number of resources, finding a difficult to locate object, speaking to various NPCs, visiting specific locations, interacting with objects in the world, or delivering an item from one place to another to acquire experience and treasures.
As with other MMORPGs, players control a character avatar within a game world in third- or first-person view, exploring the landscape, fighting various monsters, completing quests, and interacting with non-player characters (NPCs) or other players. Also similar to other MMORPGs, World of Warcraft requires the player to pay for a subscription by using a credit or debit card, using prepaid Blizzard game cards or using a WoW Token purchased in-game. Players without a subscription may use a trial account that lets the player character reach up to level 20 but has many features locked.
Questing was described as an integral part of the game, often being used to continue a storyline or lead the player through the game. The high number of quests in each location was popular, as well as the rewards for completing them. It was felt that the range of quests removed the need for a player to "grind", or carry out repetitive tasks, to advance their character. Quests also require players to explore every section of the game world, potentially causing problems for social gamers or roleplayers seeking somewhere quiet. Quests that required the player to collect items from the corpses of creatures they had killed were also unpopular; the low "drop rate", or chance of finding the items, makes them feel repetitive as a high number of creatures need to be killed to complete the quest. A large number of new players in a particular area meant that there were often no creatures to kill, or that players would have to wait and take turns to kill a particular creature to complete a quest. Some critics mentioned that the lack of quests that required players to group up made the game feel as if it were designed for solo play. Others complained that some dungeon or instanced group quests were not friendly to new players, and could take several hours to complete. Upon release, a small number of quests had software bugs that made them impossible to complete.
World of Warcraft requires a subscription to allow continued play, with options to pay in one-month, three-month, or six-month blocks, and time cards of varying lengths available from retailers, or purchasing a "WoW Token" in-game. Expansion packs are available online and from retailers. As the game client is the same regardless of the version of World of Warcraft the user owns, the option to purchase expansions online was added as it allows for a quick upgrade. World of Warcraft is also available as a free Starter Edition, which is free to play for an unlimited amount of time. Starter Edition characters are unable to gain experience after reaching level 20, and there are other restrictions in effect for Starter Edition accounts, including the inability to trade, use mail, use Auction House, use public chat channels, join guilds or amass more than ten gold.
World of Warcraft ganó varios premios tras su lanzamiento, incluyendo Selecciones de Editores (Editor's Choice awards).1542 Además, ganó varios premios anuales de medios, siendo descrito como el mejor videojuego de rol y MMORPG.44 Los gráficos y el sonido también recibieron mención en los premios anuales, sobre todo el estilo de dibujos animados45 y el sonido en general.46 El juego recibió el premio al mejor producto de entretenimiento para Mac OS X en los premios Apple Design en 2005.47 finalmente, World of Warcraft fue reconocido en los premios Spike TV de 2005 como el mejor juego de PC, mejor juego multijugador, mejor RPG y juego más adictivo.48 En 2008, World of Warcraft fue honrado (junto con Neverwinter Nights y EverQuest) en la quincuagésimo novena edición de los premios Emmy de la tecnología e ingeniería por su avance en juegos MMORPG.49 Game Informer situó a World of Warcraft como el undécimo en su lista de los mejores dos cientos juegos de todos los tiempos.50 La expansión Wrath of the Lich King recibió el premio al Mejor Videojuego en la categoría de empresas otorgado por el certamen imagina en su edición del año 2009.51
World of Warcraft has inspired two board games: World of Warcraft: The Board Game (including Shadow of War and The Burning Crusade expansions) and World of Warcraft: The Adventure Game, produced by Fantasy Flight Games. There is also a trading card game, and a collectible miniatures game on the market, both formerly produced by Upper Deck Entertainment, now produced by Cryptozoic Entertainment. Cryptozoic released an "Archives" set which contains foil reproductions of older cards produced by Upper Deck. In August 2012, Megabloks launched a licensed line of World of Warcraft 'building block' toys based on the game scenes, scenarios and characters. In March 2014, Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft was released, which is a free-to-play digital card game based on the Warcraft universe, using classes similar to World of Warcraft.
As characters progress in World of Warcraft and take on some of the toughest challenges, many of the rewards received are bound to that character and cannot be traded, generating a market for the trading of accounts with well-equipped characters. The highest noted World of Warcraft account trade was for £5000 (€7000, US$9,900) in early September 2007. The high price was due to the character possessing items that at the time were owned by only a handful out of the millions of active players, due to the difficulty in acquiring them. However, Blizzard banned the account five days after the purchase.
Como en otros, los jugadores controlan un avatar dentro de un mundo en una vista de tercera persona (con la opción de jugar en primera persona) explorando el entorno, combatiendo contra varios monstruos y jugadores, completando misiones e interactuando con personajes no jugables (PNJ) u otros jugadores. El completar misiones ayudará a los jugadores a poder subir de nivel y de esta forma, podrán conseguir equipamiento que les ayudará más adelante a combatir a las distintas criaturas que vayan apareciendo en su camino.