No more carbon copies; these WotLK Classic changes mark a new direction for World of Warcraft: Classic.
WoW Wednesday: How WotLK Classic Changes the #NoChanges Ethos
Following a slightly suspicious 'leak', the Wrath of the Lich King Classic release date was finally confirmed this week. And while the WoW community is abuzz with enthusiasm for what is considered one of, if not the best WoW expansion, there may be even more reason to get excited for September 26th than we initially thought.
Getting a 'do over' is a luxury that is rarely afforded to anyone, let alone one of the most maligned video game studios in recent years. But thanks to the surprisingly ingenious move to release World of Warcraft again, it seems Blizzard has granted itself an alternate timeline in which to rectify its past mistakes.
WoW Classic and its expansions were supposed to be a like-for-like recreation of the beloved MMORPG's heyday. A hashtag even emerged in honour of this ethos: #NoChanges. AKA #TemptingFate. Indeed, Wrath of the Lich King Classic will be the first of the Classic expansions to feature actual changes to the original - as initially detailed in a blog post.
WotLK marked a turning point in WoW's history when it introduced the Dungeon Finder, something that OG fans considered to be a departure from the inherently social mechanics of WoW. As such, one of the biggest WotLK Classic changes will be the omission of LFD. Marking the first step down a path designed to squash the frustrations that came with its initial release.
Other WotLK Classic changes, for instance, will include the ability to skip the painstaking grind that was required to get to level 55 and unlock the Death Knight, as players can now roll for a Death Knight straight away. Quality of life improvements that came with later patches back in the day will also be present on launch, such as Dual Spec.
Blizzard is also increasing the difficulty of Naxxramus, which it considered to be too easy on launch. This may also be followed by future changes that include "10-player and 25-player raids dropping the same items, Heroic dungeons getting improved drops, or increasing the starting difficulty of Heroic dungeons."
While this new branch in the WoW timeline throws into question the reasoning behind the 'Classic' series, this might end up with Blizzard and WoW players getting to experience the best of both worlds. For now, the WoW community is generally positive about these tweaks despite the #NoChanges ethos. But time will tell just how far Blizzard will take it in future.