I've watched the newly released opening cinematic for Mists of Pandaria several times now, trying to force myself into liking it, yet I feel let down.
For starters, we don't see war. We see the end of a naval battle, where an Orc and Human wash up on the shores of Pandaria. While the rendering is amazing (you can see sweat on the orc's skin and grime on the human) they look a bit...cartoonish. I'm very much accustomed and a fan of their appearances in the Vanilla and BC trailers, that's to say, a sense of realism.
Then the Orc and Human fight; this is the highlight of the trailer for me. It's cutthroat--if left to their own devices, one of them would die, but a Pandaren shows up and breaks them up, beats them down. If only Blizzard had left out the humor, that's really what has me upset.
I say these things because since the announcement of MoP, Blizzard and Metzen have repeatedly told us Pandaren will be treated in a serious manner, that they won't be kiddy or something to laugh about, and I truly saw that while playing beta, despite a bunch of humorous quests. A few seconds after Chen's appearance in the trailer, he fixes a lamp with a grunt. Right there, my disappointment sunk in. It doubled when the Human passed the Orc, whose jaw is dropped, a spear.
Trailers have always been something I look forward to. They're usually dramatic and real, bringing you in to Azeroth as if it's a place that could and does exists. The past three (BC, Wotlk, and Cata) showcased the main villain. BC also showcased the new races, and to this day, it's the trailer I like the most. Without needing impending doom or a villain, Vanilla, my second favorite trailer, showcased the races of Azeroth and the battle to come.
In part, I thought there would be a montage of war and races we have yet to see rendered. No luck. To this day, Gnomes are the lone original race left out. It appears they never will be recreated with CGI. We also haven't seen death knights, Worgen, and Goblins, and I had really, really hoped to see Goblin on Gnome violence in an epic way. Trolls have made a scant appearance, nothing spectacular. In other words, I feel a ball was dropped. We get the usual Orc and Human tussle (eerily similar to one that happens in a WC3 cinematic), Chen Stormstout, and some neat scenery.
And in the end, the Orc and Human help each other. In no way did I think they were going to keep fighting. I didn't sense an upcoming war or an escalation in conflict. I felt they were going to be pals, drink and explore together. In my opinion, I felt the opposite way of what I was promised the expansion would entail.
All that said, I'll still play MoP and make my Pandaren Monk, yet each day I grow more and more suspicious that Blizzard will not uphold their end of the bargain and give us an all-out war. If that's the case, this just might be my last expansion.