World of Warcraft introduces playable panda race - for real, this time

It's been several years now since Blizzard Entertainment played an April Fool's prank on its World of Warcraft base by saying the fifth race in the game would be panda-humanoid in flavor – today we find that in their newest WoW expansion, it's no joke. There's a whole new expansion for World of Warcraft coming out soon by the name of "Mists of Pandaria." This race of fuzzy lovable killers has since the first "JK" announcement made several appearances in both WoW and StarCraft II, and both story characters and a playable Monk class will be coming with this next expansion pack.

Blizzard vice president Chris Metzen has described the land of Pandaria, the new China-inspired country that comes in this expansion, as a peaceful place. This peaceful place, he says, is then ruined by the players that come in with the expansion. So basically Blizzard is daring us to be evil, essentially. The announcement of this expansion game at this year's BlizzCon, taking place this week, and it is said that it will focus on a war between the game's two factions, blue and red, rather than any sort of new external enemy, he saying thusly:

"Red and blue are about to get it on with a heavy ferocity that has not been seen since the days of Warcraft II" – Metzen

My god! Store your food and stack you paper, war is coming! This announcement also came aside word that World of Warcraft would begin to have an annual subscription plan that would be able to be paid for in monthly installments. For a limited time, they say, anyone who decides they want to sign up will receive a TOTALLY FREE COPY of none other than DIABLO III. Oh my gosh, my goodness, I think I'm going to have a heart attack.

Of course also of note is the fact that neither Diablo III nor the Panda expansion for WoW has been given a release date, so you'll just have to continue to chill.

[via Wired]