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Pelagos Reflects on His Mortal Life in Shadowlands

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Pelagos is the first transgender character in World of Warcraft and one of the Kyrian Covenant soulbinds. Recently, Blizzard gave Pelagos more dialog options, giving players the opportunity to find out more about his mortal life.

Pelagos reveals to you in the game that he had a female form in life and appreciates that you listen to his story. We transcribed the whole dialog and you can read the lines below.

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Precious little, in recent times.

The memories fade naturally as my former life draws ever more distant, and many others have let go of willingly to fulfill my duties here.

Except...

Pelagos

<Except what?>

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Except for one.

It can be difficult to think about. I know I should let it go but...I want... maybe need...to remember it.

It is too much a part of who I am to forget.

Pelagos

<I'm listening.>

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I appreciate your listening. Truly. As soulbinds, I know I can trust you.

<Pelagos takes a deep breath, then exhales slowly.>

I had a female form in life. I don't recall my former name, or even my race, but I...never felt like my physical form represented who I was inside.

It never felt as clear to me then as it does now. I struggled with that identity for my entire life...

Pelagos

<Continue to listen>

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But when I arrived in Bastion I became an aspirant that looked like, well...

<Pelagos gestures to himself.>

This! A male form!

I felt...comfortable! Excited! like who I was inside matched what others saw for the first time!

All of those feelings in my life finally made sense.

Pelagos

<Continue to listen>

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I may not reach ascension as fast as some. Pelagos, but I am truly happy on the path I follow.

Not many kyrian discuss their pasts, or even remember them! I believe we have much to learn as a people in that regard.

When I told Kleia, she listened--just as you have. And she has been as steadfast a friend as I could have hoped for--just as you have.

Thank you. I am glad that I was able to share my story with you.

Pelagos

<Thank you for sharing it, Pelagos>

Pelagos was a woman in his mortal life, but chose to be a man in his afterlife, so to respect his identity, Blizzard started referring to Pelagos as "he/him" instead of "they/them" on the Shadowlands Alpha.

Blizzard Logo(Source)

In an upcoming build for the Shadowlands alpha, we are updating some dialog and quest text referring to a key character to the Bastion storyline: Pelagos. While normally we wouldn’t share these changes in advance, we recognize there is a higher than usual possibility of this being misunderstood if (and when) it is discovered out of context through datamining, and wanted to make sure that our intentions are clear.

A key part of the Bastion storyline is that Aspirants are able to choose a physical form that represents their true self. Pelagos, who presented as a woman in his mortal life, chose to be a man in the Shadowlands. The team had originally written him to use they/them pronouns but received feedback that he/him would be more respectful of the character’s wishes to be identified as a man. This change is simply the result of us listening and responding to that feedback.

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again virtue signaling by blizz but yeah..... not a "transgender" in anyway since it seems that when you die you can i guess somewhat be what ever you want to be in death so you are a completly new being

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Right after the Method scandal. Thia reminds mw of Riot releasing Neeko right after it was revealed to be full of *filtered* pests 

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To be honest, I think everyone deserves the right to live their life as they please to, but why on earth do we need THIS much depth to a video game character?`Its not like we will sit down with them ever and talk about such things. It doesn't matter if the writers make them homosexual, transgender or have three extra limbs.
I for my part do not care, it is just annoying that everyone has to jump onto the bandwagon to not be called "sexist". I am aware that this is a much more complex discussion that we initially would think but can we maybe keep that topic out of things where everyone can get involved even if they don't want to? Not forcing someones opinion down your throat is an option. Just move on, be self- aware and respect others as individuals surely should be more than enough.

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2 minutes ago, Senou said:

To be honest, I think everyone deserves the right to live their life as they please to, but why on earth do we need THIS much depth to a video game character?`Its not like we will sit down with them ever and talk about such things. It doesn't matter if the writers make them homosexual, transgender or have three extra limbs.
I for my part do not care, it is just annoying that everyone has to jump onto the bandwagon to not be called "sexist". I am aware that this is a much more complex discussion that we initially would think but can we maybe keep that topic out of things where everyone can get involved even if they don't want to? Not forcing someones opinion down your throat is an option. Just move on, be self- aware and respect others as individuals surely should be more than enough.

Yes... and no.

As part of the LGBT+ community, I enjoy Blizzard do this kind of things. It feels really good when your favorite game has at least little representation. And Im sure it could be more, but the community it's not ready yet for this kind of things. 

 

"It doesn't matter if the writers make them homosexual, transgender or have three extra limbs.". It does, and a lot 🙂 

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56 minutes ago, Ravenclaw89 said:

As part of the LGBT+ community, I enjoy Blizzard do this kind of things. It feels really good when your favorite game has at least little representation. 

Does it feel like a good representation to you? How about Mathias + Shaw? Does the quality even matter?

And that's not trying to catch you out or anything, just trying to work stuff out and I'd love your opinion. Something's been bugging me about both. 

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2 minutes ago, Fredfuchs said:

Anyone think that transgender NPC will make it into Chinese release. Hypocrisy and pandering.

Don't say that. You'll make Xinnie the Pooh sad

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17 minutes ago, Halock said:

Does it feel like a good representation to you? How about Mathias + Shaw? Does the quality even matter?

And that's not trying to catch you out or anything, just trying to work stuff out and I'd love your opinion. Something's been bugging me about both. 

Leaving my 5 cents, since I happen to belong to it as well, in case you're collecting opinions.

Absolutely hate the entire "token Asian/Black/Latino/Gay/Lesbian/Trans/Bi" tendency that's plaguing the modern media. Accent on "token". Most people I know want equal treatment, and acts like those of Blizzard on the subject, especially since the entire batch happens at the same time, looks like a bone thrown a dog's way, not "representation" and especially not after 15 years of lacking it.  To add insult to injury, it is "3rd-4th row" characters, that contribute next to nothing to the story, nor they are memorable. A token to appease, nothing more.

Execution matters A LOT. A side example, there's a show I watch and it has a spinoff - both have "diverse" casts. Except the latter shoves it down your throat from ep1 to the point a character unsubtly confirms to another character he's being hired  - with additional salary - mostly because he's a trans. Meanwhile, watching the former, the "diversity" part didn't even occur to me until the "racist *filtered*" character called it out, nor their character's storylines are rooted in their race/sexuality, so seamless it was written. That is what I think is "representation" done right.

WoW's universe in general lacks those social stigmas our society does to make such traits as sexuality or sexual identity matter and contribute to a character in a meaningful way. If it was gradual population of the world over the expansions with some minor LGBT characters here and there, like it is a common occurence, no one would bat an eye. As it is... well. Read above.

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30 minutes ago, Halock said:

Does it feel like a good representation to you? How about Mathias + Shaw? Does the quality even matter?

And that's not trying to catch you out or anything, just trying to work stuff out and I'd love your opinion. Something's been bugging me about both. 

 

No, it could be better BUT it's something. It's the begining. Gamer community its kinda homophobic, so I get why they go slowly. 

Mathias + Flynn for me was amazing, I was sorpresed that a "main" character was canon-gay. I mean, does it matter the sexuality in a war game? Not at all, but as it doesn't matter if it is straight, why not gay? 

"Does the quality even matter?" I don't get this one 😛 You mean the way they introduce this details? 

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2 hours ago, Senou said:

To be honest, I think everyone deserves the right to live their life as they please to, but why on earth do we need THIS much depth to a video game character?`Its not like we will sit down with them ever and talk about such things. It doesn't matter if the writers make them homosexual, transgender or have three extra limbs.
I for my part do not care, it is just annoying that everyone has to jump onto the bandwagon to not be called "sexist". I am aware that this is a much more complex discussion that we initially would think but can we maybe keep that topic out of things where everyone can get involved even if they don't want to? Not forcing someones opinion down your throat is an option. Just move on, be self- aware and respect others as individuals surely should be more than enough.

What's wrong with adding more details and dialogue to create an interesting minor character? WoW has done that since 2004 and people have loved it. The world is full of NPCs, books, dialogue and other stuff that doesn't serve much of a purpose in terms of gameplay, but has a surprising amount of depth if you choose to interact with it, or just gives the player a subtle nod to tell them that they've found something special. It makes the world feel alive and more like a real place, and it rewards players who like to explore all the little details in the various nooks and crannies.

Edited by Monlyth
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27 minutes ago, Teufel said:

... especially since the entire batch happens at the same time, looks like a bone thrown a dog's way...

You said a lot, and thanks, I was interested. But just picking this out --

It seems pretty clear to me that this is one of those big changes they save for the start of an expansion, and I would very much guess they're going forward with it. They've got to start somewhere, right? 

But it can easily feel bad, and I think it can do so on multiple fronts. To you it may feel like a bone thrown; but to some it could seem to be trying to change their opinion with a hammer.

It's a bit sad, really. There's so much discomfort around the subject all sides struggle to let it lie easy. 

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36 minutes ago, Ravenclaw89 said:

"Does the quality even matter?" I don't get this one 😛 You mean the way they introduce this details? 

I think so. 🙂 I gathered that the representation was important to you -- which you've further clarified. You look at Flynn and think something along the lines of 'it's nice that he's gay', right? But do you find it natural for him to be gay? Had you been able to pick any character to be gay, would you have picked a different one? 

Or, like I said, does it not really matter? Is whether he's a good fit a non-issue, provided someone's gay? 

See, that might be a stupid question. But I initially heard of Mathias + Flynn and thought little of it. After a few days, I realised it didn't feel like a good pairing to me. And then I saw your comment and thought 'well, there's somebody who's really keen on the representation part of it -- I wonder what they think about the quality?'

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1 hour ago, Halock said:

Does it feel like a good representation to you? How about Mathias + Shaw? Does the quality even matter?

And that's not trying to catch you out or anything, just trying to work stuff out and I'd love your opinion. Something's been bugging me about both. 

Not really, most heterosexual relationships/characters in these games are paper thin. Representation, even if its forced or awkward at first, can help, and *filtered* relationships and identities don't need to be perfect to still matter to people. They don't need to cross some higher bar, and in fact that's the usual over correction. When pop culture realizes its had some *filtered* representation, they swing so hard they end up creating the "magical old black man" or "*filtered* friend who has spot on perfect relationship advice" tropes. And for if it's needed, well no, but would that question come up had the character not had some elements of trans identity? It'd just be "oh cool this character has a bit more lore". If people don't care to read it, dope. Most of us skip quest text, this won't be any different. And for those for whom it's representing, great! They feel more at home in the game.

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48 minutes ago, Halock said:

You said a lot, and thanks, I was interested. But just picking this out --

It seems pretty clear to me that this is one of those big changes they save for the start of an expansion, and I would very much guess they're going forward with it. They've got to start somewhere, right? 

But it can easily feel bad, and I think it can do so on multiple fronts. To you it may feel like a bone thrown; but to some it could seem to be trying to change their opinion with a hammer.

It's a bit sad, really. There's so much discomfort around the subject all sides struggle to let it lie easy. 

My two problems are still timing - as explained above - and execution. The game is just too old, and this whole ordeal really looks like "Dumbledore is gay" thing back from HP's earlier days.

I've also heard there is some Night Fae content related to Night Warriors and even more "sudden homosexuality" in WoW, but unless someone can confirm it, I'd rather not bring that to the table.

And, again, it adds virtually nothing to the characters or the story, despite the author claiming he wants to give some "depth". Either the aftermentioned stigmas need to be introduced/retconned into the lore to create narratives (at least we knew for awhile that sexism is a thing in WoW. Looking at you, Magni.), or there's some creative next-level writing Blizz do not seem capable of these days. So, still most likely to end up a bland pandering.

PS: finding it pretty amusing that the Alliance characters are involved, when the whole "acceptance" thing is something usually attributed to the Horde. At least the way Thrall envisioned it.

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10 minutes ago, Teufel said:

And, again, it adds virtually nothing to the characters or the story, despite the author claiming he wants to give some "depth". Either the aftermentioned stigmas need to be introduced/retconned into the lore to create narratives (at least we knew for awhile that sexism is a thing in WoW. Looking at you, Magni.), or there's some creative next-level writing Blizz do not seem capable of these days.

I keep turning that problem over in my head. It is difficult to find what it adds. Not solely in this case, but generally. Not impossible, I think, but difficult. But I think that runs deeper, into the fact we haven't really examined these things closely. 

Defining these things by What A Bad Time They've Had possibly has its place, but is dangerous. That can turn shallow and bitter. 🙂

I feel like Pelagos does add something to his character, to the character of Bastion. I'm not sure it adds something that really works well, unfortunately, though I'm keeping an open mind on that. Blizzard's surprised me before.

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33 minutes ago, Teufel said:

My two problems are still timing - as explained above - and execution. The game is just too old, and this whole ordeal really looks like "Dumbledore is gay" thing back from HP's earlier days.

I dunno. It seems like people complain when minor characters are introduced because they're "meaningless token characters", but when they reveal the sexual orientation of a major character, people complain that it's a "Dumbledore is gay" moment instead. Seems like you can't win.

Personally, I don't take any issue with "Dumbledore is gay", anyhow. I don't recall Dumbledore ever saying or doing anything that made it clear he wasn't gay.

And in my opinion, this still does add depth to the story, because this implies that your soul's form can differ greatly from your mortal body's form after you die, to the point where you can have a mortal woman become a man. It adds worldbuilding and can be expanded upon with other characters.

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People trying to label this 100 ways from Sunday - it's just representation, and if you think they are really pouring it on for Shadowlands, you should ask why there are so many gaps to be filled in the WoW universe to begin with. They have 15 years worth of content to evaluate.

 

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I would just like to point out, trans people use a lot of the same phrases and words as furries. 

Edited by Grumar

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10 hours ago, Monlyth said:

And in my opinion, this still does add depth to the story, because this implies that your soul's form can differ greatly from your mortal body's form after you die, to the point where you can have a mortal woman become a man. It adds worldbuilding and can be expanded upon with other characters.

Aren't all of these four factions formed from souls of different race? Like Kyrian, Venthyr, Necrolord and Night Fae could have been human, orc, dwarf etc. during their lives but once they are chosen, their souls are used to create a new being (afaik Kyrian even lose their memories?).

As for representation, it's not wrong, although no one should be praising them for it. Would have been a different thing, if they were doing it like 15 years ago. They are only introducing such characters, because it's safe and many other companies have been doing the same. Would have been a different story, if for example one of their RTS games had such characters, because it was unpopular back in the day and required to take some sort of risk. I wonder though, how that is going to be translated in Russian and Chinese version, since they actually do have laws against it, especially given game's age rating (are these texts the same or there is no Russian/Chinese beta?). Also, are Flynn/Shaw going to be just friends in these versions? 

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Half this page is angsty posts from people who've never had a problem being represented in entertainment, because they're cishet, and likely white on top of it. How sad is your life that you have to dump on others getting to feel represented when it doesn't affect you in any way.

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      Sanctum Upgrade - You may upgrade the Queen's Conservatory to Tier 5. Sanctum Upgrade - You may upgrade the Path of Ascension to Tier 5. Sanctum Upgrade - You may upgrade the Ember Court to Tier 5. Sanctum Upgrade - You may upgrade the Abomination Factory to Tier 5. Renown Level 38
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      Soulbind Upgrades - You may access the final row of traits for all of your Soulbinds. Soulbind Upgrades - You may access the final row of traits for all of your Soulbinds. Soulbind Upgrades - You may access the final row of traits for all of your Soulbinds. Soulbind Upgrades - You may access the final row of traits for all of your Soulbinds. Renown Level 40
      NYI (Source)
      RENOWN
      As you progress through your Covenant’s story, you’ll build Renown and increase the amount of trust your character has earned within the Covenant. Renown is earned by performing worthy actions through the Covenant Campaign, returning Anima to the Sanctum, and by rescuing souls from the Maw.
      Increasing your Renown will grant specific rewards at each Renown Level, including:
      Unlocking a new row of power for a Soulbind character. Increasing the item level of items you receive from World Quests. Increasing the maximum potential level of the features within your Sanctum. Earning legendary recipes for the runecrafter in Torghast. Earning unique Covenant-themed cosmetic items such as mounts, pets, a title, back attachment transmog, and transmog armor. Each week, you will pick up two quests in your Sanctum. Each of these quests will award you a Renown level.
      The first quests ask that you deposit a certain of Anima into your reservoir in your Sanctum. The second weekly quests send you to the Maw to recover souls from the clutches of the Jailer. Completing each chapter of your Covenant Campaign will also provide an additional Renown Level, so these will be quests that you want to focus on.
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    • By Stan
      We're looking at a WIP (work-in-progress) cutscene of Bolvar arriving in Oribos.
      We've also uploaded the cutscene to YouTube.
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    • By Stan
      Among other notable items added in Beta Build 35432, we found two that suggest Hunters will be able to tame Cloud Serpents and Undead Beasts in Shadowlands.
      How to School Your Serpent requires Exalted with the Order of the Cloud Serpent, the Mists of Pandaria faction, which can be easily farmed during Mists Timewalking if you haven't reached the required reputation standing yet and the item teaches you how to tame Cloud Serpents.
      "A lighthearted and picture-filled book on training cloud serpents as pets. A favorite bedtime book of Pandaren children." Simple Tome of Bone-Binding is also new, and we think it is tied to the Necrolord Covenant in Maldraxxus, since necromancy is their area of expertise. It teaches you how to tame Undead Beasts. Undead Hunters will learn this by default.
      "A tome written by members of the House of Rituals, in large letters and using simple words, to teach the House of the Chosen members how to bind undead beasts to them. There are pictures." The Hunter stable size has been increased to 205 Slots in Shadowlands, so giving Hunters two new pet families to tame is a welcome addition.
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    • By Stan
      Azerite Powers and Essences will stop working as soon as you enter Shadowlands.
      In the latest Shadowlands Beta build, Heart of Azeroth now has a red warning in the tooltip, informing you that its effects are inactive in areas without abundant Azerite, which means Azerite Powers and Essences will cease to work when you start your journey in the Shadowlands and they won't work for leveling.

      Related Shadowlands Beta Build 35432 News
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    • By Stan
      In the latest round of Shadowlands class changes, Blizzard capped Death and Decay's Scourge Strike to hit four targets, and Shadow Priests received some significant changes, including new talents.
      Death Knight
      Unholy
      Death and Decay - While you remain within the area, your Scourge Strike will hit all up to 4 enemies near the target. Monk
      Brewmaster
      Celestial Brew - Purifying Stagger damage increases absorption by up to 400% 200%. Purifying Brew - Increases the absorption of your next Celestial Brew by up to 400% 200%, based on your current level of Stagger. Priest
      Baseline
      Shadow Word: Death - A word of dark binding that inflicts [ 210% 160% of Spell Power ] Shadow damage to the target. If the target is not killed by Shadow Word: Death, the caster takes damage equal to the damage inflicted upon the target. Damage increased by 100% 150% to targets below 20% health. The spell no longer generates Insanity. Shadow
      Void Eruption cast time reduced from 2.5 to 1.5 seconds. The ability now has a 1.5 min cooldown. Mind Flay is now a 4-sec cast (was 3). Assaults the target's mind with Shadow energy, causing [ 148.48% 197.97% of Spell Power ] Shadow damage over 3 4 sec and slowing their movement speed by 50%. Voidform has been given a 90-sec cooldown and increases your damage by 20% for 15 seconds. The "legacy" Insanity-draining effect can still be achieved through the redesigned Legacy of the Void talent. The spell now refreshes the cooldown of Mind Blast and you gain 2 charges while in Voidform. Mind Blast (Rank 2) now reduces the cooldown of Mind Blast by 7.5 seconds (was 7). Devouring Plague - Afflicts the target with a disease that instantly causes 0 [ 150% of Spell Power ] Shadow damage plus an additional 0 [ 300% of Spell Power ] Shadow damage over 12 6 sec. Heals you for 50% of damage dealt. Dark Thoughts is a new baseline proc. For each of your Shadow damage over time effects on the target, your Mind Flay and Mind Sear have a 2% chance to trigger a Dark Thought, stacking up to 5 times. Dark Thought - Increases the number of charges of Mind Blast by 1, Mind Blast can be cast instantly, and can be cast while channelling Mind Flay or Mind Sear. Shadowy Apparitions was redesigned. When you use Mind Blast, Devouring Plague or Void Bolt you also create a shadowy version of yourself that floats towards all targets afflicted by your Vampiric Touch dealing [ 25% of Spell Power ] Shadow damage. Critical strikes will cause two Apparitions to be created. Talents
      Tier 15 Shadowy Insight has been removed. Shadow Word: Void has been removed. Death and Madness is now available on this tier. New Talent: Unfurling Darkness – After casting Vampiric Touch on a target, your next Vampiric Touch is instant cast and deals [ 155% of Spell Power ] Shadow damage immediately. This effect cannot occur more than once every 15 sec. Tier 40 New Talent: Psychic Link – Mind Blast deals 60% of its damage to all targets afflicted by your Vampiric Touch within 40 yards. Tier 45 Lingering Insanity has been removed. Dark Void has been removed. New Talent: Searing Nightmare – Instantly deals [ 90% of Spell Power ] Shadow damage to enemies around the target and afflicts them with Shadow Word: Pain. If the enemy is already afflicted by your Shadow Word: Pain, Searing Nightmare deals double damage. Only usable while channelling Mind Sear. New Talent: Damnation – Instantly afflicts the target with Shadow Word: Pain, Vampiric Touch and Devouring Plague free of cost. The spell has a 45-sec cooldown. Void Torrent – No longer pauses your Insanity while used, but now refreshes the duration of your Shadow damage over time effects on the target while its channeling. Tier 50 Dark Ascension has been removed. Legacy of the Void re-designed – Voidform no longer has a duration. However, during Voidform your Insanity will drain increasingly fast until it reaches 0 and Voidform ends. Void Form increases spell damage by an additional 5%. Surrender to Madness – Now has a 1.5 min cooldown (down from 2 mins). New Talent: Ancient Madness – Entering Voidform increases your critical strike by 30% for 15 sec, reducing by 2% every sec. PvP Talents
      New Talent: Lasting Plague – Increases the duration of your Devouring Plague by 6 sec. Warlock
      Affliction
      Mastery: Potent Afflictions - Mastery now includes Malefic Rapture. More Shadowlands Class Changes
       Death Knight  Mage  Rogue Death Knight 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Mage 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Rogue 9.0.1 Class Changes
       Demon Hunter  Monk  Shaman Demon Hunter 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Monk 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Shaman 9.0.1 Class Changes
       Druid  Paladin  Warlock Druid 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Paladin 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Warlock 9.0.1 Class Changes
       Hunter  Priest  Warrior Hunter 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Priest 9.0.1 Class Changes
      Warrior 9.0.1 Class Changes
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