I don’t have time to comment on this right NOW, but for my feedreader viewers at work trying to sneak content by your work filters… here is Blizzards’ announcement:
Player Achievements Preview
While Wrath of the Lich King will improve many of World of Warcraft’s existing features, it will also introduce plenty of brand-new ones to keep the game fresh and interesting. One of these new features is sure to suit a wide range of play styles: achievements. These self-contained goals will offer new challenges, satisfy goal-oriented players, allow others to see your accomplishments in World of Warcraft — and are just plain fun.
World of Warcraft’s achievements system will launch with more than 500 individual achievements covering every aspect of gameplay, including world exploration, PvE, PvP, professions, and character development; from the purely whimsical to the truly epic, there will be something for everyone. Some achievements come with in-game rewards such as tabards, vanity pets, and titles. All of these rewards are purely cosmetic and just for fun, but you’ll certainly stand out when you proudly display them.
And don’t fret about running out of achievements anytime soon. The list is easily expandable, so you can expect additional achievements with each new World of Warcraft content update.
The Achievements Window
Upon starting your journey in Wrath of the Lich King, you’ll see a new button on your main action bar. Click that button to bring up the achievements window.
The top of the window displays the total number of points you’ve received for completing achievements. Below, each achievement appears with its name, description, point value, the completion date, and a progress bar (if applicable). Some achievements expand to display a list of individual components, highlighted to show which parts you’ve finished. You can also designate which achievements to track as you play, similar to the existing quest tracker. An important design goal is to provide players with everything they need to know to unlock an achievement.
Feats of Strength represent the past glories of Azeroth, and as such, players will find them very difficult — if not impossible — to earn. They’re worth no points, and unlike normal achievements, unearned Feats are not displayed in the achievements interface. Feats include old-world player-vs.-player ranks, obtaining rare mounts, special titles, and more. Feats of Strength will be awarded retroactively (that is, they’ll be immediately granted to your character if you qualify) since many of them will be impossible to earn in Wrath of the Lich King.
It’s great to be able to see your own achievements — but it’s even better to let the world know what you’ve accomplished. By right-clicking other players and selecting the appropriate option, you can compare your achievements to theirs. Every time you earn a new achievement, your accomplishment is announced to your guild and everyone in your immediate vicinity — and the custom achievement animation and sound effect are unmistakable. Also, your achievements will be viewable on the Armory, allowing you to track and show off your accomplishments via the web.
World of Warcraft’s achievements come in several varieties. Some simply require specific actions to unlock, such as getting a haircut or defeating a member of each race in your opposing faction in PvP. Others involve a progress bar and require you to do something several times — such as give out 10 hugs. Some achievements are progressive; for example, once you complete an achievement to collect 10 vanity pets, you might next be asked to collect 25. Finally, meta achievements unlock when you complete other achievements — unlocking all World Exploration achievements (see below) unlocks a World Explorer meta achievement. Some achievements, including those that involve quests, honorable kills, items currently in your possession, skills (including professions), exploration, and reputations, will be applied to your character retroactively.
To help keep track of all the different achievements you can unlock, you’ll find the following categories in the achievements window:
Player-vs.-Player: This includes arena, battlegrounds, and world player-vs.-player objectives. A few examples: Hot Streak: Win 10 ranked arena matches in a row.
Alterac Valley All-Star: Capture graveyards, towers, and kill the enemy leader all in one game.
City Defender: Kill 50 enemy players in your faction’s capital cities.
Dungeons and Raids: Every end boss of every raid and dungeon in the game grants its own achievement. Future achievements in this category may include ones for completing a run without any player deaths, with fewer than the maximum number of players, or within a certain time limit.
Professions: Advancing to each tier of mastery in a profession earns you an achievement, and there are specific achievements for secondary skills (with major professions to follow).
Quests: Quest-based achievements include completing a certain number of quests and completing specific quest lines. This category contains zone-specific subcategories.
Events: Seasonal events such as the Midsummer Festival, the Lunar Festival, and Hallows’ End have specific achievements of their own.
World Exploration: You’ll earn achievements by exploring each zone in the game — and get meta-achievements when you fully explore a continent.
Reputations: This set of achievements includes attaining exalted reputation with each faction in the game.
General: These achievements tend toward the whimsical, including getting a shave and haircut (a new feature of Wrath of the Lich King), obtaining a certain number of tabards and vanity pets, falling from a great height, and more.