Take it from someone that has played the Mists of Pandaria beta extensively, the trailer really captures the essence of the new content. The narration has a philosophical and slightly didactic tone reminiscent of an old Buddhist monk instructing his students. The music brings up images of a mystical ancient Asia.
Blizzard has not forgotten the Horde/Alliance conflict either, showing us a naval battle ending in a draw and the desperate fighting of an orc warrior and human sailor that survived the shipwrecks. A mysterious pandaren master martial artist (assumed to be the narrator) appears and attempts to stop the conflict, only to have to face both combatants at once. The ensuing battle gives the audience a very well-rendered and animated action scene to help grab interest. When the battle finally ends, we finally see the reveal of Pandaria itself and the gorgeous colors and scenery found within.
Notably, this is the first cinematic trailer for any of Blizzard’s games to have a bit of humor in it. The way the human awkwardly hands a weapon to the orc while avoiding eye contact and the pandaren master fixing the sign post that the orc broke lighten the mood a little, but are underplayed enough to not feel silly. The last words of the narrator as he closes off the trailer seem a slightly tongue-in-cheek allusion to a certain song from Mulan, a film that certainly influenced the artistic style of Pandaria. Th humor could have easily felt wonky or out-of-place, but like the more lighthearted elements of Mists of Pandaria (and the rest of World of Warcraft for that matter) they are well-balanced by the overall seriousness of the whole package.
As with everything, not everyone will like what they see. This trailer reflects the actual game’s tone and focus well enough that players can use it to help figure out if they would be interested in the game itself. An honest trailer deserves respect for that trait alone, even if you don’t like the actual product.
The latest World of Warcraft expansion, Mists of Pandaria, releases on September 26th of this year.