After a long and action filled vacation, Yotaan and I have returned! Those of you who follow us on Twitter already know this, but Yotaan and I got a special treat on Thursday of our vacation. It turns out, we were within driving distance of L.A. on August 14. What was special about that day? Well, I’ll just point you to the image above.
Yes, Yotaan and I were able to go to the live cinematic showing for Warlords of Draenor! It was complete happenstance, and completely awesome!
The day we arrived at our vacation destination, Yotaan mentioned to me that we would be near LA on the 14th. I had not connected the two events, until he explained to me what that meant. We were in California and free to go to the WoD cinematic premiere live. Suffice to say, I freaked out. I begged Yotaan to take me, explaining how once in a life time this opportunity was. I will probably never be able to go to BlizzCon for a number of reasons, so this was the closest I’d get to seeing something like this live. Yotaan discussed this with my mom, and eventually said yes. We would be going to the Ace Theater on Thursday.
The week flew by until Wednesday night was upon us. Yotaan and I mapped out the quickest route to the theater and got all prepared to go once we got up the next day. Then bright and early Thursday morning, banana breakfast in hand, we were off.
We arrived at the theater at about 6:30 in the morning, a full two hours before the doors opened. But already, the line was MASSIVE. It stretched all the way around the block so that we were on the backside of the building. Apparently people had been camping out over night, and one dude had been there since the day before.
I went on a mission to walk the entire line, since we would be there for a bit. I set out, Yotaan saving my spot, and hiked around the whole block. It took me about ten minutes to get to the front and back while walking at a brisk pace. I saw people of all backgrounds, ethnicity, heights, genders, and ages as I walked around. It was truly awe-inspiring to think that one video game, World of Warcraft, had brought them all together. There were families all wearing WoW shirts and old people shouting ‘For the Horde!’ at all those around them. There were clusters of young men all babbling excitedly about the game and one girl done up in fangs and face paint waving around a horde flag.
After walking to the front of the line, I quickly made my way back to my dad again. We stood in line and chattered with the people around us for a bit. I was checking my Twitter periodically, to see if I could meet up with any famous people (I actually saw Rygarius, but didn’t realize it was him until afterwards).
About half an hour passed, and I decided to head out again, this time in search for Olivia Grace to get a WoWhead bracelet. I got halfway to the front when Yotaan called me frantically, telling me to run back to our spot. I dashed back, and was given an orange bracelet with the WoD Warcraft logo on it. At the time, we had no idea what the bracelet meant, but were stoked all the same.
The line moved up a few times, and then a woman with a British accent whipped around the corner, and asked the people behind us if they’d like a photograph. I realized with a start, that she was Olivia Grace. I dashed after her, and asked her (using the magic word) for a WoWhead bracelet. She only had one left, which was the one she had on her wrist. Ms. Grace didn’t skip a beat; she took the bracelet off her own wrist, and handed it to me! I thanked her heartily, and she again dashed off to do more Olivia Grace work.
It was now about 8:30, and the line was started to inch its’ way forward. Yotaan and I didn’t know if we would get in or not, but the event had already been a fantastic success. We turned one corner, and then another until we could see the front of the building. The Ace Theater entrance was ahead of us, and the hype was real.
There were some people at the side of the line, beta keys already in hand. They told us that they had been too far back in the line to get in, so they were given beta keys and an apology, and had been asked to go. I felt bad for them, but at the same time excited that we hadn’t been told that. We could have a chance at getting in. The line moved up, and up, and up, until we were under the Ace Theater sign. We showed the door dude our wristbands, and we were in!
According to the doorman’s conversation with another guy, we were in the 700s of the people allowed in. But Yotaan and I believe that we were later than that, due to the ground floor being completely filled up and the balcony seats almost as well. We quickly found seats, and settled down to wait.
First and foremost, the theater was beautiful. Ornate stonework adorned every wall, and two gorgeous murals were painted on the sides. The whole theater was cast in a ethereal blue light and down on the stage a huge screen blazed the Blizzard logo. I’ve been to a few theaters in my day, but this one outshined them all.
For about half an hour, the crowd murmured with conversation, anticipation buzzing in the air. Then, the lights changed to an orange-red, and Warcraft music began to play. The crowd cheered and sat up, but the show was not set to start for another 10 minutes.
Ten minutes flew by, and a dude sauntered on stage. The crowd went quiet, then roared, and the show was on!
Those of you watching the live stream know what went on, but I’ll provide a brief summary for those who weren’t. There was an interview with Holinka and Hazzikostas with great information on Ashran and the pre-expansion event, and then a video detailing the game play of WoD. After this, Metzen walks on, and introduces the Lords of War video. That is also shown. Finally, the cinematic starts.
As it begin, there is a tremendous cheer. Shortly after, we fall silent, and watch. The sound it booming through the theater, and everyone’s eyes are on the screen. We watch enthralled until the very end, when the WoD logo is shown. An even more tremendous cheer rings through the air, the release date is shown, and the event was over!
Yotaan and I slowly made our way out of the theater, flowing with the crowds. Upon leaving, we got two epic posters, and two beta keys. And stay tuned, we might be giving that extra key away in the next week or so.
All in all, that was the most fantastic, video game filled, nerdy-licous, incredible morning I’ve ever had. The whole thing was like a mini taste of Blizz Con. It was fantastic to be surrounded by people who all played WoW and who all felt passionate about it. The hype was real and the cinematic was so powerful and well done. That event was EPIC!