Let chaos reign! The Warcraft 3 Multiplayer Beta is starting this week
After a quiet year since the game’s announcement (but also a few weeks of some very conspicuous data updates and beta rumors), there’s some news for Warcraft 3: Reforged. This week, an invite-only multiplayer beta is kicking off for folks to test Horde vs. Alliance 1v1 and 2v2 matchmaking. Invites will be coming from Blizzard first to Spoils of War edition purchasers, folks who’ve pre-purchased WC3R, and other players who have opted into beta testing on their Battle.net accounts. (Remember, Blizzard doesn’t send out beta keys, so any “beta key” email is a faaaaaaaaaaaake. Check for beta access in the Battle.net launcher instead.)
For now, the beta only includes Humans and Orcs, with Undead and Night Elf factions in action added in coming weeks. Along with this announcement, QA forum poster Torelef provided a list of known issues with the multiplayer beta client as a heads-up. The game isn’t perfect, and that’s why you’re being invited to test it out.
This presages that the game is getting primed for a release date: our most recent point of comparison is StarCraft: Remastered, which started a closed beta at the end of July 2017 and was released only two weeks later. It sounds like this beta test may take longer, but it’s also possible that Blizzard will announce a hard release date for WC3R at BlizzCon this weekend. With big holiday breaks coming up in the US, it’s more likely that WC3R will get a release date sooner rather than later, so Blizzard has a full staff to handle any launch hiccups.
Now, not to belabor the point, but in any other year, this would be an opening ceremonies-grade announcement at BlizzCon. Maybe not the finisher at the end of the show, but something to make a big deal out of in a year that’s a landmark anniversary for the Warcraft franchise. Between this and the Deathwing in Heroes announcement last week, the studio is really clearing the decks for big announcements at BlizzCon. The hype rises, but y’know, stay chill.
Blizzard also took the opportunity to reveal more details about bonuses for the Spoils of War edition of WC3R:
- WC3R: New skins for Thrall, Cenarius, Arthas, and Jaina
- Overwatch: Animated sprays of the baseline units of all four WC3 races, and player icons evoking the cover art of Warcraft 3:Reign of Chaos and The Frozen Throne
- StarCraft 2: Console skins based on all four races
- StarCraft Remastered: Horde-themed skin
This is in addition to the goodies we already knew about, including Meat Wagon mount in World of Warcraft, unlocking Thrall, Anub’arak, Jaina, and Tyrande in Heroes of the Storm, the Mal’ganis pet in Diablo 3, and the Third War card back in Hearthstone.
Are you looking forward to Warcraft 3: Reforged? Reconsidering getting that Spoils of War edition?
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