Update on WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade

            WoW classic has proven to be incredibly popular. This is unsurprising given the massive popularity of World of Warcraft when it initially launched and that same loyal player base as drawn back to reminisce on all that had changed since. Nostalgia can be fun on occasion. And that is an occasion that some of us are willing to rise for as long as we can. Hence why we are now entering the era of expansions of WoW classic. Burning Crusade has already launched, but unlike the base classic servers, not all the content launched with it. So now we await the second phases of BC and all the additional content it will bring.

What we don’t have so far is any sort of solid date. What we do know is a lot of the content that is coming and that it is coming soon, thanks to information from the PTR testers. The update will be called the Overlords of Outland and will have a ton of new content. The downside of the size of the update is that it likely means there will be a maintenance period, but that’s something WoW players are pretty accustomed to at this point.

Two of the really exciting additions coming with the phase two update are the raids. We have the Serpentshrine Cavern, a level 70 raid with six bosses including Lady Vashj. That raid can be found in Zangarmarsh. In the Netherstorm you also have the slightly smaller four-boss raid, The Eye, staring Kael’thas. And with the two new raids comes an addition that will make navigating them much easier and more rewarding, the group browser tool. Tell the tool your class and specialization and it will match you with a group that you will fit well with. Perfect for quickly and effectively tackling these new raids, as well as a bunch of the others currently available in WoW classic. Not to mention a fun way to make new friends in an old game.

We will note players have been opposed to the browser tool as an addition since the idea of the classic servers is meant to emulate and this would be a change that wasn’t present in the edition that was originally released. We can appreciate where people are coming from in being against this type of thing, though slippery slope arguments are treacherous. This definitely seems more like a quality of life change more than any sort of gameplay overhaul and we would think that flat improvements on the more archaic difficulties would be met with less resistance. Naive of us, perhaps.

Another expansion of the gameplay they know and love that players are excited to see return with phase two is the guild bank. As the raids and potential for loot grow, so does the consideration of investment. The guild bank allows for the sharing of necessary resources among allied players with much more ease than trying to manage it between several players’ inventories. Not to mention pooling the resources and money makes it easier to determine the overall amount of materials the guild has on hand, where it has a surplus, and, most importantly, where it has shortages. Logistics may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it is somebody’s and you are lucky if one of those people is in your guild.

The raids and microeconomics aren’t the only familiar addition to WoW TBC. We are seeing the beginning of arena season 2. Earn arena points for better equipment and earn clout for your faction in these classic all-out brawls. Also, make sure to spend your arena points before the season change too. Any unspent arena points will be converted to honor at a rate of 1 point to 10 honor, so if you would prefer to use your currency as is, your window for spending it during season one is shrinking. Though the points won’t carry over, the prices for the PvP gear will go down in season two, so if you were just shy of something you really wanted this season, you might be able to get your hands on it a little easier next season. You will have to wait the two-week rest period between seasons before you can start earning points though, don’t forget.

Speaking of factions, the Overlords of Outland update comes with new groups to try and curry favor with. The Ogri’la and Sha’tari Skyguard make their return in phase two and with them comes daily content to earn points within those factions. More factions and daily content means more rewards and loot, which we know is a plus in many peoples books so we are happy to see mentions of these two groups in the PTR notes. Not to mention that the Skyguard will be returning with their coveted mounts, so we know some players will be chomping at the bit to get their hands on them.

With all of this exciting content it is almost enough to make people forget that Burning Crusade was already released and that we have many more “new” raids in store over the coming year. Five more to be precise, ranging from more twenty-five member groups like the two above to the small five-player Magisters Terrace. And that isn’t even looking at the factions, gameplay, quests, and additional arena seasons we have to look forward to before the year is out. Sure, its all stuff we have played before but since when has replaying a game been something people didn’t do?

With all the hype it is unfortunate that their hasn’t been an official announcement date for phase two yet. This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t buy a WoW TBC account to get ready for the new content.  Many of the predicted dates by other media outlets have come and gone without any official announcement, so we are more incline to sit tight on this one rather than hazard a wrong guess. We know the content, for the most part, already exists and that it will get here eventually. All we can do now is wait and anticipate. 

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