World of Warcraft Classic: The Burning Crusade — everything we know

World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade
(Image credit: Blizzard Software)

With World of Warcraft Classic out in the wild, players are looking ahead to what's next from the massively multiplayer online game, especially after the recent phase six content patch for the classic version. At BlizzCon 2021, Blizzard announced when a timeframe as to when players can dig into The Burning Crusade

While an exact date was not given, Blizzard announced that players can expect The Burning Crusade sometime in 2021. The release of the expansion lets players experience it more quickly than subscribers did back when there were three years between releases.

We've also gathered everything we currently know right here. That includes rumors, tidbits and everything else you should keep in mind ahead of a potential announcement from Blizzard. Here's everything we're looking to see from the relaunch of the WoW Classic expansion, The Burning Crusade.

WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade release date

At BlizzCon 2021, dubbed BlizzConline, publisher Activision Blizzard announced that the Burning Crusade will launch sometime this year. Much as Blizzard did with WoW Classic, the company will release content in phases. An exact date was not given.

World of Warcraft Classic

World of Warcraft Classic (Image credit: Blizzard)

Some WoW fans would prefer to only have the default WoW Classic content to navigate, while at the same time, there are others who long to try out The Burning Crusade for the first time, or to relive their journeys through the expansion. Blizzard has previously gauged interest by way of surveys to see if players want to play through new content, or if they want to leave the game the way it is for the time being. There's the possibility that the expansion may only exist in dedicated services for The Burning Crusade, or offered by way of several different options to cater to various players’ preferences. 

Though there hasn't been any official information from Blizzard about the expansion, there have been rumblings about a potential summer launch. World of Warcraft streamer "StaySafe" has indicated by way of "multiple sources" (via Wccftech) that The Burning Crusade could be released in some iteration by May 4. 

Of course, Blizzard hasn't confirmed or denied those rumors. As BlizzCon nears, we’ll likely either hear something about the date, or we’ll have to end up waiting a bit longer.

WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade beta

With no exact release date announced for WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade, Blizzard also has yet to mention any official beta. Fans are hoping that at BlizzCon, the game maker will offer either a closed or open beta that would take place after the expansion is announced. That’s what typically happens, at any rate.

When Blizzard opens up betas, you generally have to sign up to have a chance at being included. There are also other avenues, such as being logged in to Twitch and watching your favorite streamer for beta key drops. You might also be able to follow influencers or official accounts for key giveaways. Being a former World of Warcraft beta tester may also grant you access.

The best thing to do for now is remain vigilant for any announcements Blizzard makes in the coming weeks. Once the expansion has been made official, that's when the developer will start talking about when you can try the game out. 

WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade legacy

To folks who aren't regular players, it may seem like World of Warcraft releases new expansion packs all the time. Why is The Burning Crusade, the return of an expansion that was already released, such a big deal? In 2007, it was one of the most exciting games that year, as The Burning Crusade brought with it a staggering volume of new content. It was only one year later that the game would see its second expansion, Wrath of the Lich King. 

World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade

(Image credit: Blizzard Software)

Of course, the way each expansion changed the vanilla game has been quite different each time. As it stands right now, WoW is nothing like it was at launch. As such, it's nothing like it was when The Burning Crusade debuted. Being able to experience the game the way it was in 2007 is an exciting prospect for many, just like trying WoW Classic for the first time. 

There's a particular rush of nostalgia that comes from revisiting games like this, and the legions of WoW subscribers still playing the current game will no doubt want a chance to revisit the “golden era” the game experienced all those years ago. 

WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade setting

World of Warcraft Classic: The Burning Crusade is set within the overarching game world of Azeroth, but there's an additional set of locations to explore. By using the Dark Portal (the Great Portal), you can head to Outland, which is one of two gateways between Azeroth and Draenor, or the barren wasteland of what once was the home of the Draenei. It's located in the Blasted Lands, in the southern Eastern Kingdoms. 

As the Burning Legion drive the Draenei out, it's easy to set the destruction laid bare throughout the expansion. This makes for a dynamic, exciting area to explore, especially if you’ve only ever experienced the main WoW Classic narrative and raids. 

WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade zones

The Burning Crusade will feature zones you can explore in Outland, the previously discussed lands through the Dark Portal. It will also include additional content zones for new players based on the expansion's newest playable races: the Blood Elves and the Draenei. You can also visit the capital cities Exodar (Draenei) and Silvermoon City (Blood Elves). It's a great way to get to know the new races' heritage while exploring somewhere you may not have been before.

WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade races

The Burning Crusade introduced two new playable race. You get the Horde's Blood Elves, as well the Alliance's Draenei. They also expand the availability of the Paladin and Shaman classes. Previously, the Shaman was only available to Horde classes like Orcs, Trolls and Tauren. Likewise, the Paladin class was only available for Alliance Humans and Dwarves. 

World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade

(Image credit: Blizzard Entertainment)

As of The Burning Crusade, players can try out these positions with the new races as they see fit, as long as Blizzard keeps things the way they were in the past. This means you can choose from a variety of classes, whether you opt to play a previously-established race or you want to try something new.

WoW Classic: The Burning Crusade outlook

Can't wait to try out The Burning Crusade in World of Warcraft: Classic? We expect to hear more about the potential expansion in February, as BlizzConline takes place beginning February 19. It's free for anyone to attend and is taking place online only this year.

May be the came could come to mobile, as Blizzard is looking at bringing Warcraft games to mobile devices

Brittany Vincent

Brittany Vincent has been covering video games and tech for over 13 years for publications including Tom's Guide, MTV, Rolling Stone, CNN, Popular Science, Playboy, IGN, GamesRadar, Polygon, Kotaku, Maxim, and more. She's also appeared as a panelist at video game conventions like PAX East and PAX West and has coordinated social media for companies like CNET. When she's not writing or gaming, she's looking for the next great visual novel in the vein of Saya no Uta. You can follow her on Twitter @MolotovCupcake.