World of Warcraft Classic will finally be launched on Tuesday 27th August, Blizzard has announced.
WoW Classic will take the game back to its vanilla state, allowing players to go back and play the game in the manner that they remember so fondly, and—perhaps more importantly—allowing new players to experience the game in its original, much-loved form. Content will release in stages, with dungeons like Dire Maul and Zul’Gurub being released in future patches to keep things in line with how they were added to the game back in the day. Blizzard says that they’re staggering content to both avoid balance issues and to try and “capture what it felt like to play in a realm community in original WoW”, which for me is what WoW Classic is all about. The best part about WoW Classic is that it doesn’t require any extra subscriptions or up front costs, as it will come as part of an existing WoW subscription.
It’ll be interesting to see how people react to WoW Classic. While many people—me included—have longed to once again play the game in the way that meant so much to so many, there is always an argument that some things are better left remembered and undamaged. J. Allen Brack, now the President of Blizzard, when asked about the possibility of vanilla servers famously once said that “You don’t want that. You think you do, but you don’t.”, which unsurprisingly received quite a bit of criticism. I guess we may now find out if he was right or not.
Regardless of any reservations I may have, I cannot deny that the prospect of exploring The Barrens or taking part in World PvP at Tarren Mill and Southshore is a mouth-watering one. On the flip side, there have been a lot of quality of life changes since then that may be hard to go without, but the excessive grind and the social aspect of having to find your own groups was part of what gave WoW its character, charm, and addictive nature. In practice though, will we be happy having to spam “LF 1 TANK 2 DPS FOR SM” in Ironforge general chat rather than just pressing one button on the Dungeon Finder and letting the game do the work for us?
As a side note, World of Warcraft turns a staggering 15 years old this year, and to celebrate there will be a 15th anniversary collectors edition of the game released in October. It’s going to cost a pretty hefty £89.99, but it does include a gloriously enormous statue of Ragnaros. Give it to me now.
WoW Classic will launch on Tuesday 27th August.