After a lot of pleading from the World of Warcraft community, Blizzard and Activision has taken the tough, but correct decision to delay the release of Shadowlands. They agree that they need more time to sort a lot of the issues, issues that a lot of players participating within BETA have brought to their attention. Not only did they confirm the delay of Shadowlands, but they also confirmed the release date of the pre-patch – 13th October 2020. You now have ten days (as of today) to get the Reins of the Mighty Caravan Brutosaur mount!
Statement from John Hight, Executive Producer of World of Warcraft
A lot of players within the community (including the Allcraft stream) are anticipating a late December possibly early January release date for Shadowlands; this would mean that the pre-patch could last between 2-3 months. This would also be a good time for Blizzard to continue with their realm connection plans, connecting low populated realms with other realms to improve populations.
With the pre-patch coming on the 13th we get the level, item level squish, so if we get 2-3 months, this should be enough time to get accustomed to the new changes before the release of the new expansion. That might mean there’s enough time for me to adequately gear all my level 50 alts to ilvl 100 (equivalent to ilvl 440 at level 120) *Evil laugh*
Also coming in the pre-patch is the removal of experience gains from heirlooms, Death Knights and Demon Hunters will now start at level 1 (instead of level 55 and 98 respectively) meaning the introduction to a new starter zone called Exiles Reach. I urge anyone that wants to take advantage of the level squish, to create as many Death Knights and Demon Hunter’s they want before the release of the pre-patch. Level 55 Death Knight’s will squish to level 23, and level 98 Demon Hunters will squish to level 39. This will save you a lot of time and effort in the future.
Please bear in mind, that there is a throttle on the creation of a new Demon Hunter character. It’s believed to be 24 hours per creation, and the throttle can reset if you try to create a new Demon Hunter within the timeframe, so be careful!
Pre-patch will also bring changes to professions, notably Tailoring, Blacksmithing and Leatherworking; because of the new Relic of the Past system. Check my previous post if you want to understand more about this. The Relic V will only upgrade an item to ilvl 87, so I urge you to take advantage of the pre-patch gear, if you’re looking to gear your main or alt(s). As mentioned earlier, pre-patch gear is ilvl 100 at level 50 (equivalent to ilvl 440 Ny’alotha Normal loot at level 120)
I want to take this opportunity to warn you to be extremely careful, with the Relic shuffle. The method of crafting a Relic to upgrade gear and to sell it to a vendor for a significant profit margin, could be deemed as an exploit by Blizzard if done on a grand scale. I’d argue that because of the testing within the PTR, that if Blizzard were concerned at this method being an exploit, they would/should have made changes to limit this. So participate at your own risk!
If you want a comprehensive guide to whats coming in the pre-patch, then check out this guide from Wowhead.
My Thoughts on the Delay:
It’s a shame we’ll have to wait till the end of the year for Shadowlands, but I believe this to be in the best interest of the game and the franchise as a whole if Blizzard wants to bring us a great expansion. There’s a lot on the line for Blizzard and them taking extra time to iron out the issues, reassure me that we’re not going to experience another, Warlords of Draenor or Battle for Azeroth expansion. Both were rushed and released with issues just to meet a deadline.
How do you feel about the delay? When do you think Blizzard will release Shadowlands? Share your views in the comment section below.
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