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BlizzConline 2021: The Burning Crusade is coming to World of Warcraft Classic

By Tim Augustin - on 20 Feb 2021, 9:00am

BlizzConline 2021: The Burning Crusade is coming to World of Warcraft Classic

Image: Blizzard Entertainment

The portal beckons…

BlizzConline 2021 saw an unsurprising but incredibly welcome announcement for World of Warcraft Classic players - the Burning Crusade is coming! This expansion to the original game launched back in January 2007, summoning adventurers to the broken and fel-scarred realm of Outland to halt an invasion of the demonic Burning Legion. 

Check out the announcement trailer:

Nostalgic players will get to relive the events of The Burning Crusade this year, when the expansion drops in World of Warcraft Classic. The Burning Crusade seems to have been faithfully remade to boot, preserving the core experience of what it was like stepping through the Dark Portal for the very first time. So, what’s coming in this update?

Image: Blizzard Entertainment

First off: new places to explore! The broken world of Outland will be opened up to players, where they can flee the fel reavers who roam Hellfire Peninsula, confront what lurks deep beneath the swamps of Zangarmarsh and battle agents of the Burning Legion in the shadow of the Black Temple. New races are coming as well, as the Horde and Alliance grow in ranks. The blood elves fight for the Horde, looking for a new source of the arcane power that once sustained them. The draenei on the other hand, join the Alliance as exiles from Outland in search of a new home. 

If you’re looking to pick a fight with other players, you can prove your worth in the Arena PvP system. You could also give your gear a spit-shine with the Jewelcrafting profession, or fly over the Outland on mounts. Yep, flying’s back! Content from this expansion will roll out in different phases, paced for the Warcraft Classic community. What does that mean, exactly? Well, we asked Warcraft’s production director Patrick Dawson, and here’s what he said:

What we did in Classic, which we felt worked really well, was monitor how far the community had progressed toward defeating these raids and bosses. When we felt like the majority of them had accomplished their goals, that felt like the right time for us to move on to the next phase. I think we'll take a similar approach with Burning Crusade, where we just keep an eye on things and see how the community is doing with the content. We don't have a specific amount of time in mind (in between phases), it’s just when it feels right for us and when it feels right for the players.

Image: Blizzard Entertainment

But hang on, what if you want to preserve the untouched purity of your World of Warcraft Classic realm, expansions be damned? Well, players get to decide whether they actually want to advance each of their characters to the Burning Crusade era with the rest of their realm, or just continue adventuring with the original Classic content on new Classic Era servers. 

We asked lead producer Holly Longdale why the team decided to do the expansion in Classic this way, and she said:

This was a result of us listening to the community and keeping our ear to the ground and gauging what our players want. While we do expect that most of the players are going to move on into Burning Crusade classic, we recognize there's a huge group of players that just want to remain in Classic, whether they just want to continue PvP or they didn't get to level 60. They want to continue their journey there, so we want to make sure we're providing that for them. We want to have a really smooth experience so players can live in the world they want to live in, whether it's the classic world, or if they want to continue on into Burning Crusade Classic.

If you’re concerned about later expansions tainting the ‘Classic’ experience, these Classic Era servers have you covered. Just like World of Warcraft Classic, anyone who’s subscribed to World of Warcraft will enjoy Burning Crusade Classic for free. Technically, a subscription now earns you access to three different eras of Warcraft: modern, Classic and the Burning Crusade. Blizzard also announced new content for World of Warcraft: Shadowlands, which you can check out here. 

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