IRVINE, Calif.—August 26, 2019—Grizzled veterans and hardy newcomers alike can now experience Azeroth as it was in its earliest days with World of Warcraft® Classic, which is live starting today and included at no additional cost as part of everyone’s WoW® subscription globally. World of Warcraft Classic has been a labor of love for Blizzard, and the result is an authentic re-creation of the pre-expansion game in its most feature-complete state, as it was during 2006’s “Drums of War” update (patch 1.12.0). Blizzard has continued to bring WoW Classic realms online around the world to accommodate the more than two million players who have created characters in anticipation of today’s launch, and will work to add more based on player population trends.
World of Warcraft®, which has been played by more than 140 million players over the past 15 years,* has evolved considerably across seven expansions, with numerous features, enhancements, and quality-of-life improvements. In many ways, World of Warcraft Classic is more unrelenting and demanding of self-direction from players than today’s version of the game. Bonds among the community are paramount—activities like raids and dungeon runs must be organized collectively by players on the same realm, with the toughest challenges requiring 40 coordinated and committed souls to surmount.
Classic’s Azeroth is equal parts wonder and hazard, and its trials will push players to their limits. The Alliance and the Horde, in the midst of outright war, are made to reckon with forces whose powers transcend their own brutal conflict—including some of the most iconic and love-hated of villains of the Warcraft® universe, like Ragnaros the Firelord and the Archlich Kel’Thuzad.
“It’s been a long time coming, but we’re overjoyed to welcome our friends new and old to classic Azeroth,” said J. Allen Brack, president of Blizzard Entertainment. “The community’s excitement is infectious and deeply motivating—it’s clear they’re as thrilled as we are to relive the World of Warcraft Classic experience. We look forward to rediscovering its wonders and challenges together with them, starting today.”
World of Warcraft Classic will continue to expand in the weeks and months following today’s launch, allowing players the opportunity to live through pivotal moments in Azeroth history previously lost to time. Among the host of features and activities set to be introduced to the game across six phases are iconic raids like Blackwing Lair, Zul’Gurub, and Naxxramas; player-versus-player battlegrounds like Warsong Gulch, Arathi Basin, and the classic version of Alterac Valley; and time-limited server-wide events like the Ahn’Qiraj War Effort, and the Scourge Invasion.
World of Warcraft 15th Anniversary In-Game Celebration
World of Warcraft Classic heralds WoW’s 15th anniversary, arriving ahead of celebrations planned for the coming months. The festivities will begin with an in-game event in World of Warcraft’s latest expansion, Battle for Azeroth™, in which max-level players can participate in a special raid that brings together some of the mightiest raid bosses in WoW’s history. Players who complete the raid will be awarded the Obsidian Worldbreaker mount, inspired by the dreaded Dragon Aspect Deathwing the Destroyer.
In addition, all Battle for Azeroth players who log in during the 15th anniversary event will earn limited-time bonuses, including a Lil’ Nefarian pet, a commemorative in-game achievement, and more. Further details will be announced in the coming weeks.
Current World of Warcraft subscribers can access Classic right now through the Battle.net® desktop app.
For more information on World of Warcraft Classic, visit the official website at www.worldofwarcraft.com.
Assets available at: blizzard.gamespress.com/World-of-Warcraft.
*Based on internal company records.
Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft®, Hearthstone®, Overwatch®, the Warcraft®, StarCraft®, and Diablo® franchises, and the multi-franchise Heroes of the Storm®, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (www.blizzard.com), a division of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ: ATVI), is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s track record includes twenty-two #1 games† and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company's online gaming service, Blizzard Battle.net®, is one of the largest online-gaming services in the world, with millions of active players.
†Sales and/or downloads, based on internal company records and reports from key distributors.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements: Information in this press release that involves Blizzard Entertainment's expectations, plans, intentions or strategies regarding the future, including statements about the gameplay, features, and functionality of World of Warcraft®: Battle for Azeroth™, World of Warcraft® Classic, and the World of Warcraft 15th anniversary in-game celebration are forward-looking statements that are not facts and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. Factors that could cause Blizzard Entertainment's actual future results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements set forth in this release include unanticipated product delays and other factors identified in the risk factors sections of Activision Blizzard’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K and any subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q. The forward-looking statements in this release are based upon information available to Blizzard Entertainment and Activision Blizzard as of the date of this release, and neither Blizzard Entertainment nor Activision Blizzard assumes any obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements believed to be true when made may ultimately prove to be incorrect. These statements are not guarantees of the future performance of Blizzard Entertainment or Activision Blizzard and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond its control and may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations.