World of Warcraft has one of the biggest gaming communities that has been going strong since its release in 2004. The fans have expanded the WoW player experience over the years, creating private servers that have brought new dimensions and life into the game.
Private servers are reimplementations of the original game or server, usually run by fans for player use. These servers will usually have specific alterations to change up the gameplay experience, making each server a unique experience. Servers can try to be similar to the original WoW servers, or they can deviate far from the original content. There are plenty of types of private servers that will cater to all kinds of players, whether they want more PvP, PvE, or even Roll Play. The following private servers are the largest active servers for WoW.
10. WoW Mania – 1,600 Players
WoW Mania contains anywhere from 500 to 1,600 players online throughout the day. This server contains PvE realms for gamers to play through. Its current focus is the Wrath of the Lich King expansion version 3.3.5a. It is a Blizzlike server that tries to stick to the original gameplay while adding a few perks to freshen up the experience. It does have double XP on the weekends and will hold custom events.
9. SoloCraft – 1,900 Players
SoloCraft is a private server that contains 1,500-1,900 players. It is a Blizzlike server that also offers a few perks that differentiate it from the original servers. Players can get 3x the XP and can learn all professions. This server also provides AI companions for those who want to play and do not wish to quest or raid alone, but their friends are unavailable. Cross-faction guilds are available as well. The server has both PvP and PvE gameplay.
8. WoW Panda – 2,000 Players
WoW Panda is a private server that mostly caters to Russians and Russian speakers but thankfully has English along with other languages available. This server primarily focuses on the Mist of Pandaria expansion and contains 1,200 to 2,000 players online on any given day. The server offers PvP and PvE for players to enjoy. It has awesome multiplayer gameplay and plenty of quests to fulfill.
7. TwinStar Apollo – 3,000 Players
TwinStar-Apollo is a private server that has been around since 2008, making it one of the longest-running private servers available. It is a server made for those who love PvP, as it will hold regular events such as a 3v3 arena event. Players can get XP fast with 1-3x XP and bonus XP possibly provided on the weekends. Twinstar-Apollo II will event hold character auctions if players want to gamble for that already-made character. The population is anywhere between 2,200 and 3,000 during the day, with 2,771 new accounts recently made.
6. StormForge – 4,000 Players
StormForge contains two private servers under one umbrella group. The private servers they run are Mistblade, which has 2,500 to 3,000 players, and Netherwing, which has 3,000 to 4,000 players active during the day. Stormforge servers offer plenty of raids of varying tiers and PvP play. New content for these servers is constantly being released.
5. Turtle WoW- 6,100 Players
Turtle WoW is a newer World of Warcraft private server that was launched in 2018. This server currently has 5,500 to 6,500 players online during the day, with a peak population of 15,178 players in August of 2023. The Turtle WoW Team creates new stories based on the WoW lore and other content provided by World of Warcraft and other past Warcraft games. They provide new class and race combos while adding new races to play with their own unique flair.
4. WoW Freakz – 7,310 Players
WoW Freakz, like Stormforge, has two different private servers that they maintain. Firestorm is their original server, with 7,310 players active during the day. Their newest server is Felsong, which currently has 498 players online, but I suspect that number will increase soon. Firestorm has content as recent as the DragonFlight Season 1 expansion from WoW for players to enjoy. Felsong is based on the 7.3.5 client, with content being released progressively over time.
3. Everlook – 10,000 Players
Everlook is a PvP private server that has on average 10,000 players a week per their website. It has no geo-bans, making the server accessible to everyone worldwide. It has unique in-game features and progressive itemizations that will change with each new patch. The server is based on Northdale and Light’s Hope.
2. Warmane – 27,450 Players
Warmane has five separate servers, with three of them having over 5,000 players daily. The top three servers are Lordaeron with 5,572 players, Onyxia with 8,320 players, and Icecrown with 12,000 players daily. Warmane has surprisingly taken down the Frostmourne seasonal server, which was their most popular server, showing about 20,000 players on that server alone. All three of the current top servers are focused on PvP.
1. WoW Circle – 32,471 Players
WoW Circle is the most popular private server with gameplay similar to the official World of Warcraft server by Blizzard. This server has 32,000 to 33,000 players daily compared to WoW official servers, which hold up to 37,000 players. The server caters to both Russian and English speakers, which can be an interesting experience navigating the website since half of it is in Russian. The server offers many expansions, including the fan favorite Wrath of the Lich King.