World of Warcraft has made its mark as a legendary MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game) with over 10 million members worldwide. The World of Warcraft Battlechest is self-claimed to "include everything you need to begin the adventure," and contains a 256-page beginner's guide, a free month of online game time, the game itself and two expansion packs.
MMORPGs are extremely popular, and World of Warcraft is the most popular one there is. Players create a custom avatar and complete quests, fight monsters or each other and join factions. In World of Warcraft there are two main factions, one of which you must join. The Alliance gets typical fantasy protagonist race/character types such as humans and dwarves, while the Horde faction can choose between things like Trolls and Orcs. It is also notable that the two main factions cannot intercommunicate aside from very simple emoticon-based things; in order to speak to another player, you must be of the same faction.
Players have a variety of options when it comes to developing their character, which is the mark of RPG-style games. You can pick a profession such as blacksmithing or mining, and you can develop secondary skills such as archaeology or fishing. There is a built-in leveling system that is experience point-based.
The 256-page beginner's guide is created and distributed by Brady Games, which is not directly affiliated with World of Warcraft producer Blizzard Entertainment. Brady Games is a company that produces guides and walkthroughs for video games across the industry.
A free month of online gameplay time comes with the chest as well, which is somewhat typical for an MMORPG package. These companies make money (as well as support servers) by charging per-month subscription fees for players.
The game originally took place on only two continents, but expansions have expanded it to four continents and one "realm." The original two continents are Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms; expansions added Northrend, Panderia and the realm of Outland. The entire game takes place in a world called "Azeroth."
The Battlechest package also contains two of the four expansion packs available. The two contained are World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade and World of Warcraft: The Lich King. However, it must be pointed out that as of September 19, 2012, both of those expansions were added to all previous Warcraft accounts, so in effect the Battlechest is only offering the game, a guide and a one-month subscription. It is relatively cheap, though; the Blizzard Entertainment website offers it for only $5.
World of Warcraft is widely reviewed as the best and most in-depth MMORPG on the market and is lauded for groundbreaking work in the online gaming industry. In fact, there are claimed "addicts" to the game, and overplaying has been such a problem for the game that it now has a built in "parental control" option which limits the amount of time played. Although the tool is meant to be used by adults limiting their children, many adults use it themselves to monitor their own playing time.