ANYWAY, HERE IT IS! The big announcement about celestia and pet enhancement. This Press Release hit the streets about an hour ago and already twitter is exploding. Central has post up about it. Mythspent Youth has a post up about it. West Karana has a post up in the works. Ravenwood Radio promises to talk about this press release on the show tonight. Edward Icespear is already lamenting the increased work load that his massive pet listing on Central will become. Hahaha! And here I am throwing down my two cents.
I'll talk some more about this after you read the press release. I cut out the bottom material of the release that no one reads for ya . . . you're welcome.
UPCOMING WIZARD101 EXPANSIONS INCLUDE SEVENTH WORLD AND NEW PET CAPABILITIES
New world, advanced pet system and level cap increase included in two Wizard101 content updates
PLANO, TEXAS (March 24, 2010) – KingsIsle Entertainment, creators of the award-winning massively multiplayer online game (MMO) Wizard101 is proud to announce details on two of the major content updates for 2010. An extensive Advanced Pet system is launching this spring and the world of Celestia is launching late summer. In addition to all new quests the Celestia expansion will also include an increased level cap and new secondary schools of magic.
Coming this spring, players will have the opportunity to hatch customized pets from millions of potential combinations. The Advanced Pet system will bring a new dimension of interaction within Wizard101 as players can race their pets in the expansive Pet Derby, participate in new pet-themed minigames, feed and train them, and use them as allies in magic duels. Players will be able to level their pets from an egg to ancient beings with incredible powers.
The new world of Celestia is inspired by Atlantis, and young Wizards will encounter new adventures and quests deep under the sea. Celestia also increases the level cap in Wizard101 from level 50 up to level 60, as well as introducing three new secondary schools of magic. Celestia will officially open in late summer. Starting in June players can undertake new quests to discover the secrets of this new world and begin to unlock the story behind Celestia.
"2010 is shaping up to be an incredible year for the students of Ravenwood School of Magic," said J. Todd Coleman, Vice President and Creative Director for KingsIsle Entertainment. "Whether exploring the underwater kingdom of Celestia, or hatching and training pets to participate in the Pet Derby, every player–from the newest apprentice to the returning grandmaster–will find something compelling, engaging and fun."
My thoughts on some of the finer points:
- millions of potential combinations . . . so unlocking this puzzle is going to be a huge community effort.
- race their pets in the expansive Pet Derby . . . Yup we wanted Mario Kart for Wizard101, we got it!
- pet-themed minigames . . . notice the pluralization there . . . more ways to fill our potion bottles.
- feed and train them . . . hmmm, wonder where the best place to do that will be, hmmmm? Maybe in your player housing lawn?
- allies in magic duels . . . either pet cards just got a whole lot cooler, OR maybe it will work like the toon town pets where they randomly step in and take a swing when you attack . . . don't know how that will work with traps.
- level their pets from egg to ancient beings . . . yup. That. Is. Awesome. I can't wait to see a little squee baby wraith pop out from an egg. This probably also means that certain eggs will be crown items. Just a guess.
- Celestia is inspired by Atlantis . . . Have you all seen Atlantis Squarepantis . . . the spongebob mini-movie? Sorry, my brain is full of this kind of nonsense rather than historical book reading type of mumbo jumbo, but I'm going with it. In Atlantis Squarepantis, Sandy the squirrel explains that Atlantis contains all the pinnacle of existence there is to living, Krabs goes for the gold, Sandy goes for the Science, Squidward goes for the art, Plankton goes for the weapons of war, and Patrick and Spongebob go for the world's oldest living bubble. I really really really really hope that KI uses a few puns in their quests from this mini-movie . . . jus' sayin'
- quests deep under the sea . . . ok, so to this point Wizard101 has had no Z-axis. You have not been able to go up and down. Your character has been glued to the ground. If you actually get to swim, then WOW. That is truly amazing. The problems with traveling along the Z-axis in most games is that it increases the chance for glitches where you get stuck in walls or hills, etc. At least we have a port button. I really hope this doesn't increase complaints about getting stuck. Alternatively, I really want to swim up and down and not in a straight line . . . or be stuck to walking through hallways like the storm house has.
- increases the level cap from 50-60 . . . I told you so! Expect to receive 3 more training points I'm guessing.
- three new secondary schools of magic . . . note "secondary." That means you can't make a wizard that's a moon wizard or some such nonsense. I'm also going to guess that these secondary schools of magic are going to be necessary to fight whatever monsters you come up against in whatever final instance you fight in. So, expect to spend those 3 more training points in astral magic.
- late summer . . . dang, August or September seems so far away. It would have been nice for all these kids to play in Celestia over the summer break. Now it looks like pet racing derby and mutant pets are going to be the way to go.
- starting in june . . . OH WAIT! So at least they are going to give you summer break kids a few new quests to get you started toward Celestia! WOOT! NEW CONTENT FOR SUMMER!
- unlock the story . . . this, my friends, is one of the best parts. We all absolutely love a good story. I hope it really gets me excited and immersed in the anticipation of the new content. I wonder if they will unlock levels 50-60 early so you don't get the whiners complaining about missing out on the Exp of doing the quests early. Hmmmm.
- Quote from J Todd Coleman . . . I love J Todd Coleman. He's awesome.
I can't wait to hear your thoughts and feelings!