"For many World of Warcraft players, the original Burning Crusade was their first step on an epic journey that’s still going on today—but for many others, stories of fleeing the Fel Reaver and confronting Illidan at the top of the Black Temple are just the stuff of legend”
Blizzard Entertainment’s World of Warcraft Classic is about to get a big new update in 2021 - or should that be old update?
Burning Crusade will bring back the expansion that originally launched in 2007, and will mark the first big expansion for WoW Classic.
Here's everything we know so far about this exciting new chapter.
May 6 2021 - WoW Burning Crusade Release Date has been announced alongside plenty more juicy details. Read on for all the news.
May 11 2021 - A large beta invite wave has gone out and Blizzard is asking people to attend a "launch test" On Wednesday, May 12, at 11:00 a.m. PDT. You can read the full blue post here.
May 18 2021 - Blizzard has announced changes to the PvP system. Initially, season 4 rating restrictions on gear were present on season 1 gear however, they have been removed and only 2000 rating is required for shoulders and 1850 for weapons. This system will likely be used in season 2 also. You can see the full list of changes here.
Blizzard also announced it's removing the WoW Classic daily dungeon limit, but not permanently.
June 1st 2021 - Find out everything you need to know about maintenance ahead of the Dark Portal openenig here.
World of Warcraft: Burning Crusade Classic is launching June 1, 2021
WoW Classic Burning Crusade Pre Patch Start Time
Here's when you can get into the Burning Crusade pre-patch:
- WoW Classic Server Maintenance (US) – Will complete at 3 p.m. PST/ 6 p.m. EST on May 18, 2021.
- WoW Classic Server Maintenance (UK) – Will complete at 8 a.m. BST on May 19, 2021.
Good news! As with WoW Classic, Burning Crusade Classic will be included with every WoW players’ subscription at no additional cost.
Pre-Expansion Update Patch
Beginning May 18 with the launch of the Burning Crusade Classic pre-expansion patch, WoW Classic players will choose whether to progress each of their characters to Burning Crusade Classic with the rest of their realm, or continue playing the original WoW Classic content on brand-new Classic Era realms also launching that day. Players who wish to experience the best of both worlds will be able to use the optional character cloning service (available May 18, $35 per character), which will allow them to continue playing a copy of an existing character on a Classic Era realm while also advancing into Burning Crusade Classic.
Also starting May 18, players on Burning Crusade Classic realms will be able to create blood elf and draenei characters and experience the two races’ new starting zones in the Azuremyst Isles and Eversong Woods, preparing their new heroes for the opening of the Dark Portal on June 1. From the day of the patch through launch, players will also be able to participate in a limited-time in-game event as demonic agents from beyond the Dark Portal pour into the Blasted Lands and assault key locations across Azeroth.
Check out the trailer below:
Burning Crusade Classic builds on the epic foundation of World of Warcraft Classic, providing players with an opportunity to experience the next legendary chapter in the Warcraft® saga. Through the launch and over the course of content updates to follow, the recreation will bring back the features of the 2007 original, including:
- The Shattered Realm of Outland: Traverse the treacherous crags and spires of Blade’s Edge Mountains, where even dragons fear to roam; hunt alongside the uncorrupted Mag’har orcs among the floating islands of Nagrand; battle demonic agents of the Legion in the shadow of the Black Temple; and much more.
- Two New Playable Races: Fight for the Horde as the blood elves, seeking a new source of the arcane power that once sustained them, or join the Alliance as the draenei, exiles from Outland in search of a new home.
- Gather at the Arena Gates: Assemble your most trusted allies and prove your PvP prowess in 2v2, 3v3, or 5v5 combat in Arenas such as the Ring of Trials and the Circle of Blood.
- Take Wing on Flying Mounts: Take flight in the chaotic skies of Netherstorm and soar over fel-touched Shadowmoon Valley with the introduction of flying mounts in Outland.
- Master Challenging Raids and Dungeons: Conquer 5-player dungeons set in the crystalline fortress of Tempest Keep and the Caverns of Time, where heroes bear witness to Azeroth’s past. Raid the haunted halls of 10-player Karazhan, and gear up over time for a climactic confrontation against Kil’jaeden in 25-player Sunwell Plateau.
- New Options for Heroes: Carve gems of power to socket into players’ gear with the Jewelcrafting profession; choose between the Aldor or Scryer factions in Shattrath and earn their unique rewards; create a paladin on the Horde or a shaman on the Alliance; and more
WoW Classic Burning Crusade Deluxe Edition Content
Intrepid explorers looking to further enhance their Burning Crusade Classic experience can purchase the optional Deluxe Edition ($69.99), also available with the arrival of the pre-expansion patch on May 18. The Deluxe Edition comes with:
- The Reawakened Phase-Hunter mount, a creature that draws on the otherworldly energies that transformed Draenor into Outland, for use only in Burning Crusade Classic and designed to match the look of the original expansion
- The Viridian Phase-Hunter mount, a variant for use in modern World of Warcraft (including Shadowlands) and reflecting the game’s current visual style
- A Dark Portal Hearthstone for use in Burning Crusade Classic, providing a unique visual effect inspired by the gateway between worlds
- The Path of Illidan toy for Burning Crusade Classic, which causes your character’s footsteps to leave flickering fel fire in their wake for a short time
- The Dark Portal Pass, which boosts one character to level 58 (same restrictions as standalone Dark Portal Pass apply; cannot be combined with standalone Dark Portal Pass purchase)
- 30 days of World of Warcraft game time, providing access to WoW Classic, Burning Crusade Classic, and the modern game
WoW Classic Burning Crusade Pre-Announcement Development
While Blizzard has not announced anything in terms of WoW Classic’s future post-Naxrammas, there is plenty of information that almost confirms it is coming.
The most significant indicator of TBC dates back to March when Blizzard sent emails out to high profile WoW content creators and some of the game’s biggest fans.
The email linked to a poll that suggests the different ways that Blizzard could launch TBC on various server configurations.
The options detail Classic servers advancing to TBC, new servers starting with either level 1 characters or level 58 templates. The other option is to create TBC realms for players to transfer or copy characters over to the new TBC realms.
I've rarely had to think about an answer for this long.. hmmm #WoWClassicpic.twitter.com/KncEmJpCfz
— KLRS (@Kaelaris)
More evidence of TBC comes from popular WoW Classic YouTuber, Tipsout, who claims a source informed him that TBC and even Wrath of the Lich King are on their way.
His source initially gave him the correct release date for WoW Classic, and important job information which also came true.
The video also goes on to remind us that Jay Allen Brack, the President of Blizzard Entertainment said if Classic is a success, then TBC and Wrath of the Lich king are likely. Brack has since mentioned Classic is a success as detailed in multiple earning calls for Activision Blizzard.
With the evidence building to a TBC launch, the post 1.12 content idea seems to be dead in the water.
Before Classic launched, the community was talking about the potential for WoW Classic to get new content post patch 1.12. However, if the dev team is focusing on TBC and Wrath, then it is unlikely this will be the content plan.
With Blizzcon set for February 2021, there's every chance we'll hear more at the online-only event.
WoW Classic Burning Crusade - A Community Divided
World of Warcraft’s most popular Twitch streamer, Asmongold, warns that Blizzard needs to be careful with the launch of TBC. Speaking back in March when Blizzard sent the TBC poll out, he mentioned they need to avoid splitting the community.
Asmongold said: “The first option Blizzard gave out [in the surveys] was to upgrade all the Classic servers into Burning Crusade servers. Do not do this. There’s a reason people are playing Classic, moving them on from that will alienate them all.”
The call for WoW Classic back in 2015 and 2016 was immensely powerful. Blizzard lost roughly three million subscribers in one quarter in 2015, with many moving to Classic private servers, forcing Blizzard to open conversations with a private server developer. Even with the game out and supported officially by Blizzard, some players will not want to move on. Forcing them to play TBC may not be the best move.
Perhaps moving onto TBC is not the only solution to the end of WoW Classic’s phased content plan. While nothing is supporting this solution, perhaps there will be new Classic realms launching for players that want a fresh Vanilla experience?
The reality of the situation is that Blizzard needs to be careful with the Classic player base departing. Private server developers can get access to more accurate Blizz-like values now that Blizzard restored the old game. Another player exodus to private servers is something Blizzard does not want.
Perhaps Blizzard will have more information on all of this when BlizzCon begins in February 2021.
WoW Classic Burning Crusade Release Date Rumours
With the future of WoW Classic looking to Outland, when could we expect a TBC release date?
Rumours originally surfaced back in September 2020 detailing a potential TBC beta expected for Spring 2021, with WoW Classic’s Naxxrammas looking at a December release window.
Haven't confirmed it yet but the hottest rumors for Classic WoW: Naxxramas release is planned for early December with a TBC Beta rolling out in March/April of 2021! Sooner than expected but we'll see! pic.twitter.com/RmhTX1x1nb
— Nano (@NanoNost)
With the benefit of hindsight, the Naxxrammas release date seems to be correct. Naxrammas is currently on the WoW Classic PTR for testing.
Looking at the recent history of the WoW Classic PTR, the Ahn’Qiraj PTR went live on June 12, with the raid official releasing on July 27.
The Nax PTR went live on October 7, which places it well in the time frame for the rumoured December release window.
The only thing that could throw this away is the delay of WoW Shadowlands. The game’s delay to an unscheduled 2020 date may cause release issues since Blizzard tries to avoid content overlapping on the CDN (Content Distribution Network).
It was only recently there were login server issues when the WoW Shadowlands pre-patch part one and the Call of Duty Black Ops Beta launched on Battle.net on the same day, which also coincided with Blizzard’s Paris office striking.
Since the above release rumour seems somewhat accurate, the suggested rumour dates for a TBC date could be correct. With BlizzCon delayed until February 2021, we will likely have a TBC announcement at the event. Perhaps we will get a TBC demo as we did with the 2018 Classic demo, or even an Alpha/ Beta release date.
It is unlikely we will get an actual TBC release date until the WoW development team are confident with the product. WoW Classic had plenty of launch issues, and Blizzard will not want to repeat them.
If history is anything to go by the WoW Classic release date was confirmed in May 2019, three months before it went live on August 27 2019. It is likely we will not see an official WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade release date until the late spring / early summer of 2021, presuming TBC is the answer to WoW Classic’s future.