A fresh start is coming to World of Warcraft Classic in the Season of Mastery
There are some big things on the horizon for World of Warcraft Classic. Blizzard announced today that Fresh Start servers are coming to the Classic experience — something that had only been hinted at before. These servers will start all players back at level one and let them re-level their way through Azeroth. It’ll be just you and your fresh Warrior or Shaman without any of the massive piles of gold or armor that you might’ve stockpiled for your next character.
Blizzard is calling it the Season of Mastery and it’s possible that this will be the first of many seasons that are set to emulate the Diablo 3 model of fresh starts and interesting new ways to play. But this isn’t just a chance to replay through your Classic experience, Blizzard is also making #slightlymorechanges to things along the way with these servers.
Firstly the timeframe that the content will unlock in the Season of Mastery will be accelerated. Rather than have a half year between major raid releases as we saw on the current Classic servers, Season of Mastery will release entirely over a year. Six phases broken up over that time will mean you see new content coming every two months.
Phase 1 (WoW Classic Season of Mastery Launch)
- Molten Core
- PvP Honor System and Battlegrounds (up from Phases 3 and 4)
- Dire Maul
- Blackwing Lair
- Darkmoon Faire
- Darkmoon deck drops begin
- Green Dragons
- Ahn’Qiraj War Effort begins
- Ahn’Qiraj raids open as the war effort dictates
- Scourge Invasion
The sped-up content cycle is nice, but the best part is yet to come. The Season of Mastery will have a variety of other tweaks that weren’t present in the original release of World of Warcraft. Blizzard saw how quickly bosses were dying, especially with their choice to launch on the later Classic patch 1.12, and have decided to try and do something about that to make them harder. Bosses will have some of their original mechanics restored, increased health, and players won’t be able to bring world buffs like the Rallying Cry of the Dragonslayer into raids anymore. It’s not all things that make the fights harder though, to help offset the increased health bosses have — they will no longer have a limit of 16 debuffs that can be applied! Finally, you can apply all of the damage over time effects you want without worrying about taking the slot of something important.
There are also a couple quality of life changes coming to the outside world as well. Players will see a faster 1-60 leveling process that’s closer in speed to how it was once Burning Crusade Classic came out, with the largest experience increase going to quest completion experience. This looks like a way to encourage players to go and do the quests in every zone rather than just slaughtering thousands of boars for their levels.
Meeting stones are all going to be upgraded to summoning stones so that you can quickly get your party and raid to the dungeons instead of waiting for that one Hunter to run all the way across Tanaris. Miners and Herbalists will also see additional nodes to mine and gather flowers from. With the more densely populated realms of Warcraft Classic Blizzard found the competition a little too fierce for those Thorium nodes.
Blizzard has hinted that there still might be more changes in the pipeline, so we’ll have to wait to see what other zany things they’re tweaking.
I’m much more interested in playing this condensed speedier Season of Mayhem Classic experience than I was the original Warcraft Classic. The first information we’ve gotten has all seemed like really good ways to modernize Classic without getting rid of the things that made it special in the first place. I can’t wait to peek my head into the beta for this when it goes live on October 5.
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