Blizzard Entertainment announces midnight store openings across Europe for the launch of World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King
Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. announced today a series of European events for the upcoming launch of Wrath of the Lich King, the latest expansion to its highly acclaimed massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG), World of Warcraft. At midnight on the 13th of November, 2008, key retailers will open their doors to players wanting to be the first to purchase and play the next installment in the World of Warcraft series.
“We’ve been looking forward to these launch events all year,” said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. “This is one of the few opportunities we get to meet with players in person, and we can’t wait to celebrate the release of Wrath of the Lich King with them.”
Here in the UK, the launch event will take place at HMV in London at 150 Oxford Street, London, W1D 1DJ, with doors opening at 00:01 on the night of the 12th/13th. As well as being among the first to acquire the expansion, attendees will have an opportunity to meet with COO Paul Sams and associate producer Lee Sparks, who will be present to welcome players and sign their copies. Similar launch events will be held internationally in North America, Taipei, and Seoul. Full details on the specific locations and plans for each of these events can be found at www.wow-europe.com/midnight.
Attendees will have the opportunity to purchase the standard edition of the game as well as the limited Collector’s Edition, which contains The Art of World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King hardback book; Frosty, an exclusive in-game frost wyrm pet; a behind-the-scenes DVD; the official soundtrack containing 21 tracks; an exclusive mouse pad displaying a map of the newly opened continent of Northrend; and two World of Warcraft Trading Card Game starter decks with two exclusive cards available only in the Collector’s Edition.
For those unable to attend the official launch events, hundreds of stores across Europe will open at midnight to celebrate the launch. Players should check with local retailers for their midnight opening plans.
The January 2007 launch of the first World of Warcraft expansion, The Burning Crusade, saw thousands of players attend the European midnight opening events. The Burning Crusade went on to sell nearly 2.4 million copies worldwide within its first 24 hours of availability, and approximately 3.5 million within its first month.
With more than 11 million players worldwide, World of Warcraft has become the most popular massively multiplayer online role-playing game to date. World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King sends players to the cold, forbidding continent of Northrend, where the fearsome Lich King Arthas Menethil, last seen in Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, works from his secluded citadel to bring all of Azeroth under his twisted dominion. Players will battle the Lich King’s undead army from the shores of Howling Fjord and Borean Tundra to the seat of his unholy power in Icecrown Glacier. In addition, players will be able to advance characters to level 80 and gain powerful new abilities while exploring several new zones and dungeons. The expansion also introduces a number of exciting new features, including an achievement system, expanded player-vs.-player combat options such as siege weapons and destructible buildings, and the game’s first Hero class — the necromantic death knight.