Wow. That didn’t take long at all. What appears to be the first leaked screenshot from the Cataclysm Friends & Family Alpha has appeared on internet, and comes from none other than the infamous bastion of anonymity itself, 4chan. Tucked away in the video games section of the site, the following image appeared this morning and immediately caused a stir:
This is likely the first known picture of Deathwing’s in-game model. Now, to note a few things:
- The source of the image (4chan) is known for its propensity to fool people and play internet pranks. The model looks pretty authentic and well-detailed, though.
- Likewise, this appears to be the result of a model swap, which explains why Deathwing is hanging out on the bridge leading into Stormwind. It would also account for the tiny, blue name hovering above the dragon, which indicates that this is likely a player and not an NPC of some sort.
- The model, while currently looking awesome, may not be finished. The head looks ace, but textures on other areas of the body seem to be of a lower resolution.
Essentially, while there’s a small chance of shenanigans, this model is most likely the real deal. Just like everything else that gets data-mined, it’s probably somewhere in the Alpha’s client files, which the player then modified to appear as his character (and from what I know of the technique, they would not appear as Deathwing to other players, as a result). I would also bargain that, unless it’s some graphic pulled from the login screen or otherwise, that it appears in an area of the game unable to be accessed at the current time. Not that I wouldn’t like to see him laying waste to Stormwind (For The Horde!).
Just to reiterate, this has not been confirmed, and nobody on the Lore Hound staff has access to the Friends and Family Alpha. This may not be our screenshot, but that doesn’t rule out the possibility of getting a C&D to take it down later. I guess that’s up to Blizzard.
Until (and if) that happens, enjoy your first look at Deathwing stampeding around Azeroth.