Despite World of Warcraft dropping down to 7.6 million subscribers - which is still 6.6 million subscribers more than many MMOs would dream of - there's nothing stopping Blizzard's moneymaker. Today at Blizzcon 2013, the company announced the next expansion for World of Warcraft, Warlords of Draenor.
Like other expansions, Warlords of Draenor will kick the level cap up another 10 levels to a max of 100 and give players the ability to boost a single character up to level 90. As always, you'll get a new storyline, dungeons, raids, scenarios, and battlegrounds. The game will be sending players to Outland before it was shattered into the area found in the Burning Crusade expansion. In addition, after Cataclysm and Mist of Pandaria's simplification of stats, more stats will be joining in Warlords of Draenor. This includes Movement Speed and Cleave, which will take up space freed up by outgoing stats like Hit and Expertise. Otherwise, WoD will be more of what you love: revamped Professions, 2 new raid instances, 6 five-player dungeons, and a new PVP world zone.
But you want to know about the new stuff. How about new character models? The original races were looking long-in-the-tooth compared to the Goblins, Worgen, and Panderen, so Blizzard will be changing things up. Blizzard plans to update all eight original races, plus the Blood Elves and Draenei, over the course of this expansion. So, not all at launch.
Warlords of Draenor will add player housing, called Garrisons, that you can build, customize, and defend. Your personal garrisons will expand and upgrade as you complete quests and you'll be able to recruit NPC allies to join you. That part sounds a lot like the Brotherhood missions in the Assassin's Creed games.
"For example, a miner rescued from a dungeon might take up residence and help gather Mining resources," reads the FAQ. "A heroic warrior you quarter might embark upon quests at your command, with a chance to return with valuable treasures. Other characters might provide you with quests that expand upon their own stories or lead you to valuable assets in your campaign."
"When it comes time to upgrade your Garrison, you might choose to build a Barracks to send more followers on missions simultaneously, an Inn to provide new recruits, or an Infirmary to speed up injured followers' recovery time between assignments," the FAQ continues. "You may instead decide to build a Smithy and recruit a Blacksmith to research new plans and craft valuable resources (such as those with daily cooldowns). You'll also be able to invite friends to visit your Garrison to trade resources and see how your home base stacks up against their own."
There's currently no release date for Warlords of Draenor, but sometime in 2014 fits Blizzard's previous release schedules.