We're back on track for a trip to hell, adventurers. After last month's delay failed to give us a new release date, Blizzard are now confident in their ability to deliver World Of Warcraft: Shadowlands by the end of November. It's not the Halloween launch I imagine they were hoping for, but hey - what better way to close out this year than by yeeting ourselves into the fantasy underworld?
To get us all prepared for a trip out of mortality, Blizzard have released a new story trailer for the sinister expansion. Truly, I have no idea what is going on in Azeroth these days.
While originally planned to launch back on Tuesday, Blizzard delayed Shadowlands last month - citing a need for polish, balance, and to tighten up some interlocking systems. Today, executive producer John Hight returned with a message explaining that they're on track with those changes, believing the team can get the game on shelves by November 23rd.
"Since we first told you about our decision to delay, we’ve used the time to further polish the expansion and shore up the endgame, including overhauling the combat and rewards in the Maw, and reworking the Covenant systems to make your choice more immediately impactful and have clearer long-term goals. Now the team is in a great position to get things the rest of the way to the finish line before November 23—and as always, we’re committed to working with you to improve the game for as long as you’re out there playing it."
In addition to the awaited release date, Hight gave dates for both the pre-launch Scourge Invasion and the expansion's first raid. On November 10th, the world map will periodically flood with the undead, turning players into zombies that risk infecting even more players. Following the expansion's launch, Castle Nathria will test raiders with Shadowlands' first endgame challenge, opening its doors on December 8th.
The world being divided by timezones and all, Blizzard have put together a nifty little map explaining when, exactly, Shadowlands will open up. For us in the UK, we'll be taking a trip to the underworlds at 11pm on Monday, November 23rd.
— World of Warcraft (@Warcraft) October 29, 2020
For the time being, you can check out some of the wild changes made in the pre-expansion patch wot hit earlier this month. I popped in myself with the last of some BlizzBucks I'd acquired over the years, and it's all quite neat. The tutorial zone actually works as a tutorial, the levelling experience has been handily condensed into a mere few hours, and I must've spent 500 gold dipping into the new customisation features at the barbers.
Let me know if Sylvanas bites the dust in this one, and maybe - just maybe - I'll consider jumping back aboard the WoW-train.