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I've been playing World of Warcraft since launch, burned through Outland and Northrend and run Scarlet Monastery so many times that returning to it feels like a real-life visit to an apartment I used to rent. I'm so emotionally invested in this world I feel shame every time I go to unsubscribe, which has been several times now. Yet with every expansion I start back up. I have to see what Blizzard's done.
In this case my time in Azeroth wasn't quite as extensive as in expansions past, even though Cataclysm marks the most impressive change to the world to date. Specifically, how the starting experience is so fast, convenient, and story-driven. I love how the story gives the world a sense of progress and continuity by referencing events in the past. I love how easy it is to get good gear. And I still really like the visual style.
Then we have a perfect score of 10/10 from Games Xtreme:
I was greatly impressed with Wrath of the Lich King, and doubted Blizzard could top the atmosphere and game play of that, but they really have excelled themselves with Cataclysm. I can whole-heartedly recommend it to seasoned WoW players who might've taken a break, veterans of other MMOs who are considering giving WoW a try, or complete newbies to this kind of game. You won't be disappointed.
Followed by a score of 90% from MyGaming:
In closing, Cataclysm may have changed the landscape immensely, but it is still intrinsically World of Warcraft. If the formula did not work for you in the past, it won't work for you now. For the majority of the fans out there, I see Cataclysm as a good expansion, bar the usual complaints seen on forums. However, it seems impossible to please all of the people all the time. Cataclysm, and specifically World of Warcraft, is what all other MMOs should strive to be, but honestly, most developers frequently fail to learn from these successes.