Apologies that this is late but my email's only just properly kicked back in, but without further ado!


European beta signups to start on 5th July 2004

VELIZY, France - 28th June, 2004 - Blizzard Entertainment today announced the 5th July 2004 as the date players can start signing up for the European closed beta of its eagerly awaited MMORPG, World of Warcraft. Potential testers will be able to register online through the official European Blizzard websites for the English, French and German speaking markets: English Signups, French Signups and German Signups The final selection of testers will be chosen randomly to ensure a broad base of playing skills, locations and system requirements to address compatibility and game play issues. All submissions will receive equal consideration at anytime throughout the three-week sign up period.

In addition to game play and technical compatibility testing, the purpose of the beta test is to validate the distribution and hosting infrastructure in Europe and, in due time, to verify the localization of the game in French and German. This process will allow World of Warcraft to reach the high level of quality that has become the signature of every Blizzard product.

In Europe, Blizzard plans to host the game on local servers, with pan-European network management. Additionally, the game will be fully supported by Blizzard's local World of Warcraft team, making it the first non-licensed MMORPG in Europe to have a dedicated regional team in place. The local team will be responsible for all aspects of game operation, including localized offline customer support, in-game support through game masters and community management for the game.

With this team, Blizzard intends to affirm its commitment to the European game community by delivering an unparalleled massively multiplayer experience.

Building on the success of the Warcraft series, Blizzard hopes to expand the MMORPG genre by creating a deep, immersive, user-friendly experience that will appeal to both veteran gamers and casual players alike.

World of Warcraft takes place three years following the aftermath of Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne, when a great tension has settled over the ravaged world of Azeroth. As the various races begin to rebuild their shattered kingdoms, new threats, both ancient and terrifying, have arisen to plague the world once again. Players must explore the lands of Azeroth, forge fellowships with other players, and build their strength in order to prevail. World of Warcraft will be fully localized into French, German, and English in Europe.