Pre-Loading Cataclysm Without Preordering Possible

| 29 Oct 2010 22:18

Taking time to install games is for noobs.

imageOne of the more pleasing conveniences that Blizzard has recently announced is that Cataclysm, the upcoming third expansion for the terrifyingly popular MMORPG World of Warcraft is available via digital pre-sale. This enables players to purchase the expansion digitally now, begin the background downloader of the expansion files immediately, and therefore be fully upgraded to Cataclysm and ready to play the moment the servers go live at way later than you want them to be sometime after midnight on December 7, 2010.

The problem with this, of course, is that a lot of people have already pre-ordered, say, a Collector's Edition (I know I have), which will hinder their ability to play each and every second possible, as they will have to wait in line to get their copy at a midnight release (c'mon, you know you're doing it), get home, install the game, and then log in. What ever shall they do?

Our friends over at WoW Insider have pointed out a method to trick your WoW Launcher into thinking that you've already upgraded your account, therefore beginning the download of the files and pre-loading them onto your system. Just follow the steps ahead.

1. Make sure World of Warcraft and/or the launcher and background downloader are completely closed.
2. Open up your World of Warcraft folder.
3. Open Launcher.wtf in Notepad and change the "accountType" line from LK to CT.
4. Open Config.wtf in Notepad and change the "accountType" line from LK to CT.

Now load up the launcher and you should begin downloading 700 megs or so of new material. That's all of it; you'll be able to play the very second your server comes online.

As a note - in case you are concerned about legality/ToS violations, worry not - Blizzard is aware of this method, and sees nothing wrong with it. This doesn't upgrade your account, it only tells the Launcher to begin downloading the Cataclysm files. You still won't be able to access Cataclysm features, and you will still need a valid Cataclysm CD Key to play the game. This method just cuts the time you'll need to spend installing down to simply the time it will take for you to enter in your new CD Key. Enjoy!

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