So I received my Beta invite in one of the rounds that went out on this past Friday.
Before I get into a few gripes and reiterations of earlier comments, I want to show this one screenshot that shows how before things go live the internal Blizzard development has a sense of humor. To mark models that are place holders they are members of the Need Model faction or Guild.
Starting Area Rant
So time for rant number 1, which is a reminder of tBC and Cata Day 1. You would think Blizzard would learn from their issues in previous expansions.
As you can see in the image gallery there are way too many players in one area for the game to be playable. I have complained about this many times over the years, hell I have even made suggestions using technology they already have in-game to improve the play experience with regards to these issues. There are solutions out there already implemented for other games, such as SW:ToR. For this very reason they have put invisible walls on the Valor Point Vendors in the Faction Capitols. Why they don’t implement this out in the world for quest givers in areas that will have periods of high traffic is beyond me.
Further what makes this worse than in previous expansions is that both future horde and alliance characters are in the same starting zone. While I like the concept some sort of instancing/phasing is needed.
Some General Scenery
I will say the minor tweaks that Blizzard has done to the rendering engine does have some very nice results. When not in a super crowded area I can run the game still with Ultra Graphics settings and it looks really nice. Here is a gallery of some of the nice scenic views I came across while leveling my Warrior Malchome and exploring the zone in general. These are all from the Jade Forest as I have yet to come across a way into any other zone.
More information and interesting images to come as Beta Progresses.