Let's talk about this for a bit ... We know that Blizzard wants to accelerate patch and expansion release timelines. It's feeling competition from other games, and that's good, and it's in agreement with all of us devoted fans that the game needs more awesome content to play. That's also good.
Given that, I'd like to get the ball rolling on some good old-fashioned release date guesses. My personal guess is May or June of 2012. It'll happen in the summertime, the initial awesomeness of Star Wars and Diablo III will have worn off, and Blizzard will be in a prime position to drop a major expansion to the tried-and-true World of Warcraft.
A quick, late-night WoW Insider staff poll suggests that Mike Sacco, Anne Stickney, and Mat McCurley think July 2012. Daniel Whitcomb and Allie Robert say August or September of 2012. (Allie thinks November/December might also be possible, even though she wants her [expletive deleted] pandas before the world ends.)
But when do you think? Yes, that means a reader poll:
When do you guys think the Mists of Pandaria beta is coming out?
We haven't a clue (and I'm serious). But if I have to wager a guess, I'd say that a target date of sometime around Dec. 20, 2011.
We don't have anything in-game that closely resembles Pandarens or their style. How does this architecture even fit in?
Take a very close look at the Night Elf buildings. Then go and take a look at eastern (Asian) buildings. Well, wait, let me just illustrate:
The Pandaren architecture, pictured below, fits Asian themes even more.
With the introduction of the Monk class, do you think Blizz will extend the 10 Character per server limit to accomodate the extra class? Seeing as many people may already have a character of each class at some stage or another.
Ghostcrawler responded in a panel at BlizzCon that Blizzard's thinking of ways to solve this, and it doesn't have anything yet. One idea that's been thrown around is to remove the individual realm restriction of 10 characters per realm but keep the account restriction of 50 characters per account. That'd certainly solve things.
But again, this was just an idea being thrown around, so don't get mad if it doesn't happen. Greg shares things like that to let us know Blizzard is working on it, not to get our hopes up for that exact solution.
My guess? We'll see the 10 character per realm limit lifted somehow in MoP.
The Dewd asked:
Do we have any idea what itemization will be for the Monks? Did Blizzard reveal anything about it or does anyone have any theories?
We already know they'll share their itemization with rogues and druids. As for exactly how the stats will be weighted slightly differently, that remains to be seen. Small weighting changes are just the type of thing Blizzard likes to play with in betas.
Have questions about the World of Warcraft? The WoW Insider crew is here with The Queue, our daily Q&A column. Leave your questions in the comments, and we'll do our best to answer 'em!