During the Blizzcon opening ceremony on October 3, Blizzard revealed the Battle for Azeroth expansion for World of Warcraft, as well as many new features that would be arriving in the core game alongside the expansion. We'll be running down all you need to know, including the Battle for Azeroth release date.
World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth Release Date
The World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth release date has officially been revealed as August 14. Those who pre-order will gain a level-110 character boost to use immediately, and begin recruiting the first four of Battle for Azeroth's new Allied Races, including the valiant Lightforged draenei on the Alliance and ancient Nightborne on the Horde.
But, as Polygon's Philip Kollar was keen to point out on Twitter: you'll be able to get a frog mount with the Battle for Azeroth expansion.
FROG MOUNT IN WOW THIS IS NOT A DRILL YOU CAN GET A FROG MOUNT— philip kollar (@pkollar) November 3, 2017
World of Warcraft New Allied Races
Brand new Allied races are coming to World of Warcraft through the Battle for Azeroth expansion in 2018. The Nightborne Elves, Highmountain Tauren and Zandalari Trolls will join the Horde faction, while the Void Elves, Lightforged Draenei and Dark Iron Dwarves will team up with the Alliance faction.
However, all the aforementioned new races must be unlocked through specific questlines, and after you've completed quest for a new race, you can then create a brand new character from said race. The new characters are said to start at level 20, and can be increased to a maximum level of 120.
But don't think these new races are merely cosmetic changes, as each new race comes with its own passives and abilities, just like the traditional World of Warcraft races. All these brand new races for both the Horde and Alliance factions are coming with the Battle for Azeroth expansion.
World of Warcraft New Level Scaling
One detail that wasn't revealed in the Blizzcon opening ceremony was the new level scaling mechanic being implemented in World of Warcraft as a whole, not just the new Battle of Azeroth zones. First revealed in the last World of Warcraft expansion, Legion, level scaling allows for all of the zones in that expansion to be relevant no matter what level players enter them at.
This basically opens up all the brand new areas in World of Warcraft for under and over-levelled players. Every single zone in Battle for Azeroth will now feature a much wider range of levels, as every quest in every zone will scale to the level of the player, along with all the enemies encountered in said quests.
However, there will be a maximum level that zones can scale to based on the level of the player, so you can't merely wander around the same zone forever.
All these new level scaling changes will actually be implemented in World of Warcraft well before the Battle of Azeroth expansion arrives, through patch 7.3.5. We haven't yet heard a solid release date for patch 7.3.5, but we can be fairly sure it'll arrive during the first half of next year.
World of Warcraft Battle for Azeroth PvP Servers
Another new detail that was revealed later on in the Blizzcon festivities was the changes that are coming to the player versus player servers in World of Warcraft.
As part of the upcoming Battle for Azeroth expansion, Blizzard is actually cutting out PvP servers entirely. Instead, you'll now choose whether to opt into PvP in their capital cities, and if you turn this feature on, you'll then find yourself placed in a world filled with other players that opted into the PvP feature.
There will also be brand new PvP arenas arriving in Tiragarde and Zuldazar, and a new Battleground titled Seething Shore is also in the works, slated to launch as part of the Battle for Azeroth expansion at some point in 2018.
World of Warcraft Classic Announcement
Aside from the main announcement of the Battle of Azeroth expansion during Blizzcon's opening ceremony, Blizzard later revealed that they are hard at work on World of Warcraft: Classic.
"This is a larger endeavor than you might imagine, but we are committed to making an authentic, Blizzard-quality Classic experience. We want to produce the game experience that we all enjoyed from the original Classic WoW, not the actual launch experience," said Warcraft producer J. Allen Brack. "So please bear with us, it's going to take some time."
As such, we don't even have a release window right now for World of Warcraft: Classic, but you can be sure that we'll update this guide with any new information that Blizzard releases for the project.
This might be all the total information we have right now on everything that's changing with World of Warcraft in 2018, but we'll keep this guide updated with any new details that make their way out into the wild.