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WoWFeb 18, 2021 1:18 pm CT

Patch 9.1 finds us trying to cast off the Chains of Domination

With Shadowlands patch 9.0.5 being largely focused on systems and balancing, many World of Warcraft players have been waiting patiently for the continuation of the various story threads left dangling at the end of patch 9.0 content. On Wednesday Blizzard accidentally released information for patch 9.1 Chains of Domination, and it looks we’ll finally get some answers — while likely posing new questions for the remainder of the expansion. A majority of the content focuses on the Jailer and the Maw, but they’re not the only threats we’ll need to deal with.

This article contains spoilers for patch 9.1 and for the World of Warcraft sessions at BlizzConline.

Following is the text of the official PR release, which has since been removed from the website.

Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
The traitorous Sire Denathrius has been defeated . . . but the power of the Maw still grows. In Chains of Domination™, the upcoming first major content update for World of Warcraft®: Shadowlands, players will delve into new depths of the Jailer’s hopeless domain, seeking to understand the true nature of his malignant plans. Backed by the renewed might of the four Covenants, the champions of the Horde and the Alliance will take the fight for the Shadowlands to the seat of the Jailer’s power. But the Banished One has a terrible new champion in his service—a cruel instrument of despair conscripted by Sylvanas Windrunner, capable of instilling dread into the hearts of Azeroth’s heroes like no creature of the Shadowlands.

  • Discover the Mysteries of Korthia – The Jailer is searching for the key to fulfill his twisted designs—and he has pulled a fragment of a long-lost domain into the Maw itself to find it. Seek answers in ancient Korthia, the City of Secrets, and engage in new quests and outdoor activities.
  • The Covenants Strike Back – With the strength of the kyrian, night fae, necrolords, and venthyr restored, embark on a campaign to unite the four covenants—and together, launch an assault against the Jailer in his home territory.
  • Raid the Sanctum of Domination – Brave treacherous, unexplored reaches of Torghast in a new 10-boss raid: the Sanctum of Domination. Encounter the true Eye of the Jailer, turn the tide against the Tarragrue, and come face-to-face with the Banshee Queen herself in a fateful confrontation.
  • New Mega-dungeon – Tazavesh, the Veiled Market—Gather your party and discover exotic wares and strange creatures in an eight-boss Mythic mega-dungeon set in a bazaar of the mysterious Brokers, and culminating in a high-stakes heist to steal powerful artifacts from Azeroth.
  • And More – Gear up for Shadowlands Raid, Dungeon, and PvP Season 2, with a seasonal Mythic Keystone dungeon affix themed around the Jailer’s power; don new Covenant cosmetic armor sets that any class can wear; expand the powers of your Soulbinds and Conduits; add new mounts and pets to your menagerie; Unlock flying in the Covenants’ four domains; and much more.

Patch 9.1 offers a lot to explore — and makes us curious about the future

There’s a whole lot to unpack here, and I’m sure as information comes out over the next few months — and even tomorrow — we’re going to get even more details; suffice to say we don’t know everything about patch 9.1 but we already know a whole lot.

The most interesting aspect of patch 9.1 is that everything points towards us being done with the Maw and Torghast when it’s finished. The Jailer, of course, will likely not yet be defeated, but with the raid in Torghast and featuring opponents you’d normally expect in a Big Boss raid, I’m wondering where we go from here. Will there be new Shadowlands zones in 9.2, or will we be heading back to Azeroth?

The Covenant storylines have the air of being finished as well during 9.1, with them uniting for the push into Torghast. We do get a new zone Korthia to explore, although it’s been pulled into the Maw; fortunately, its status as zone of the Maw does not appear to come with the Eye of the Jailer or with the mount restrictions of the rest of the zone — although don’t expect to be flying there any time soon, if ever.

Shadowlands also continues the tradition of mega-dungeons, this time featuring our favorite shady traders, the Brokers. While I’m not certain Ve’nari will be involved, I really hope she is, as she is quite the interesting character. The fact we’ll be heading to Azeroth as part of the dungeon experience is another clue as to where the rest of Shadowlands is headed.

Stay tuned to BlizzConline and Blizzard Watch for more information about the Chains of Domination.

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