[Update] Oct. 7th:
The beta is released! You can download it here:
BitTorrent: CraftingAzeroth-v0.1-beta.torrent (2.17 GB)
Mirror: woz.cursecraft.com/minecraft (thanks wozarib)
The files extract to ~24 GB so make sure you have enough harddrive space. The download contains map files for Eastern Kingdom and Kalimdor plus two essential plugins for running a Bukkit server. Bukkit is needed to play the map properly; there are no equivalent plugins for single-player at this time.
I've marked this as a beta release, meaning that additional updates / fixes may come in the future. As much as is possible, I will try to release these changes in the form of a patch that will only modify the blocks that need to be updated. This means you can start working on the map right away, without worrying about your changes being wiped out by a later update.
If you're just interested in exploring, you can access a public server by adding cursecraft.com:1337 to your in-game server listing. You should be able to fly around (double jump) and teleport between continents (/mvtp Kalimdor or Azeroth, or /warps).
[Update] Oct. 8th
YouTube user svmgaming has made a helpful installation guide for Windows that will be useful to anyone who is having trouble getting started.
About this project:
The Crafting Azeroth project is a full-scale reproduction of the World of Warcraft environment for Minecraft. The creation of the map is heavily automated, assisted by custom software that I have developed. The continents of Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms were the first to be generated. You can explore them in your browser by clicking one of the links below:
Screenshots of the map are also available in the galleries below. If you are unfamiliar with World of Warcraft, the "Before and After" gallery will show a comparison between specific locations in both World of Warcraft and Minecraft:
Additional information about the map and many older screenshots are available in this this archived post, and in this article by VentureBeat. A mirror of this thread is also posted on minecraftforum.net.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
Q. How does the conversion process work?
A. I developed software to convert the continents of World of Warcraft into Minecraft blocks using a process known as voxelization. The software converts everything in the game, including all the buildings and natural details, down to the individual tree stump. Once the parameters for the software have been set, the entire conversion process takes approximately 24 hours and requires no human intervention.
Prior to the conversion process, I needed to match textures from World of Warcraft to the appropriate material in Minecraft. For example, an object with a wooden texture might be converted into wooden planks, while an object with a mossy texture might be converted into mossy cobblestone. I created a special program to help do this assignment, but selecting materials for all 10,000+ textures in the game still required many hours of work.
Q. How large is the world?
A. The current version of the map spans approximately 275 square kilometers and contains over 68 billion blocks. The highest part of the world, the peak of Mt. Hyjal, stands more than a kilometer above sea level. Since the map exceeds the Minecraft height limit, the world had to be divided into seven altitude layers, each connected via a server-side plugin that teleports players as they approach the height limit. To be played locally, the map requires 24 gigabytes of hard-drive space.
Q. Does the world include underground areas, like dungeons and caves?
A. Yes, the map includes all caves and dungeons that are not part of a separate instance. Loosely speaking, this means that if you can only get there by portal, then it's not part of the map. So, areas like Blackrock Mountain are freely accessible, but dungeons like Blackrock Depths or Molten Core are not.
Q. Do you plan to convert any other continents, such as Outland?
A. Yes, work has already started on Outland and Northrend, and I plan to convert other regions such as Tol Barad and the Lost Isles as well. The conversion process can also be used on instanced dungeons, so they may appear at a later date, but they are not top priority right now.
Q. Where can I download a copy of the map?
A. The map can be downloaded via BitTorrent (2.17 GB).
Q. Who else is involved in the project?
A. The Cursecraft team has been very helpful in hosting and testing the multiplayer version of the map, particularly Marlamin, who was willing to setup and configure the server for me =p. I've also received much help from the team over at Overviewer.org, who adapted their software to generate and host the Google Maps view of the project.