Cataclysm Beta: Level 80 Starting Gameplay

The first thing I did today was change my horrible Tauren druid into a slightly less horrible Troll druid. I wasn’t aware that going from Tauren to Troll would change several things: in flight and Moonkin form I now look like an Alliance character.

The new me!

As soon as I spawned outside of Org, I was instantly given a quest. When I accepted it, it popped up as normal but now had a moving portrait beside it. I guess this is what my quest giver looks like! This new portrait didn’t come up with all subsequent quests, but it DID happen a few more times later in the day when I needed to kill a named goblin and shark. It seems to be a pretty cool idea – having a picture of who/what you’re looking for.

Quest giver portrait

Once I was happy with my new look I checked my spell book to see if anything was missing, and there was. I was pleasantly surprised by the spell book’s new look, and after admiring it for a few minutes, I went and retrained my professions and flying, found the NEW Druid trainer in Org, and generally took care of what seemed like essential business before questing.

The re-skinned spell book has a more elegant look

When I went to spend my talent points, I got another surprise – the talent trees are MUCH smaller (maybe I read about this and just forgot it was happening), and the window has been re-skinned slightly (for the better).

The re-skinned talent window

In typical me style, I got distracted and decided I would go to Undercity before checking out the new questing zone. I took the zeppelin (since the portals aren’t functional yet) which is now located inside of the city.  Now that we can fly in Azeroth, missing boats and zeppelins is no longer an issue, as is falling off of the zeppelin outside of Undercity. Once I arrived, I flew over the top of the city – I don’t think it’s been re-skinned, but it was cool to see it from such a height.

Undercity from above

I then had a quick peek around Brill, which has had an extensive face lift.

The new Brill

Brill, facing North

Statue of Sylvannas in the centre of Brill

I was now ready to go quest. The quest I had initially picked up in Org sent me to an area (via mercenary ship) northwest of Stranglethorn Vale called Vashij’ir in the Shimmering Expanse.

The Shimmering Expanse

While on your ship, you are attacked by some kind of tentacled creature, and the ship sinks. As you sink to the bottom of the sea, you see the crew drowning around you. Suddenly, you are surround by a bubble and brought to the now sunken ship, and so begins the questing.

Sunken mercenary ship (quest hub)

The majority of quests are pretty standard and are all underwater. The one standout quest so far is one involving harnessing a large seahorse, which, once completed gives you an epic level underwater mount. Because all of the quests are underwater, you are granted a boon that gives you unlimited water breathing and the ability to run along the ocean floor.

New seahorse mount

I took a few quick videos of the gameplay today, so check any or all of them out. There’s no sound, but you should get the idea anyway. I recommend viewing them in 720p (HD) and full screen.



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