BlizzCon 2017 kicked off with a bang today, as Blizzard announced World of Warcraft Classic, a new server option meant to emulate the “vanilla” version of the game.
WoW fans have been asking Blizzard for a way to access the “vanilla” World of Warcraft, or the way the game was when it first released back in 2004, for quite some time. After the release of six expansions, the game has been altered in several different ways—changing it drastically and making it so that some content would never be accessible in its then-current form ever again.
The goal of this server, according to executive producer J. Allen Brack, is to reintroduce the game experience from classic World of Warcraft, and not, as it was joked about, the launch experience, which was notoriously disastrous when it made its debut those 13 years ago. Fans have been hard at work on creating their own versions of vanilla servers over the years, which have systematically been shut down by Blizzard itself time and time again due to copyright claims and other issues, but the community has continued to push back every time the company came down on them.
With World of Warcraft Classic, there will now be a way for players to experience the game the way it was, like a “snapshot” in time of sorts, officially endorsed by Blizzard. Unfortunately, there’s no release date or timing just yet for the new server, but rest assured it’s probably around the corner.
In other WoW news, there’s also a Shadow plushie coming to the Blizzard store, with all sales proceeds going to charity for global disaster relief efforts. If you’re feeling nostalgic about the popular MMORPG, it’s a good time to get started playing again, especially with the seventh expansion, Battle for Azeroth, on its way soon.