Blizzard ships World of Warcraft

Blizzard Entertainment on Tuesday shipped World of Warcraft, its first entry into the popular Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG) genre. The game ships in North America, Australia and New Zealand for Mac and PC in both Standard and Collector's Editions for US$49.95 and $79.99. Further beta testing will be announced in Europe, Korea and elsewhere in Asia before the games are released in those regions.

World of Warcraft transports players to the mythical world of Azeroth, a war-torn place populated by the Alliance and the Horde, two opposing factions vying for power. Each faction comprises creatures of different types, each with different physical characteristics and specializations, including humans, dwarves, Night Elves, Orcs, Tauren, The Undead and others. Players congregate in the game world by the thousands as they assume the roles of heroes, going on quests, developing skills, joining each other in epic battles and more.

Like most MMORPGs, after an initial trial period (30 days), you are required to pay a subscription fee to continue playing. World of Warcraft subscriptions range from US$12.99 to $14.99 per month depending on how many months you buy. The Collector's Edition includes a behind-the-scenes DVD, "exclusive in-game pet," cloth map of the game world, soundtrack CD, coffee table book and commemorative manual.

Mac system requirements for World of Warcraft call for a G4/933MHz, 512MB RAM; ATI or Nvidia video hardware with at least 32MB VRAM; 4GB hard disk space; Mac OS X v10.3.5 or higher, and 56K or higher modem with an Internet connection.

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