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Starym

Will the Shadowlands Pre-patch Only Last 2 Weeks? Could Ocober 13th Be the Release Date?

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Bolvar is also exhausted by all this waiting. Another Tuesday has passed without any official word on the pre-patch release date and everyone is asking themselves what exactly is going on. We've asked ourselves the same question and one worrying thought keeps popping up: what if the Shadowlands pre-expansion patch only lasts 2 weeks. That would mean next week's October 6th/7th release date is missed and we get the pre-patch on the 13th/14th. So let's get into it, starting with the most recent news related to the pre-patch.

The PTR Release Candidate and the Patch Pre-load

The PTR was re-labeled as a "Release" candidate yesterday, after a number of days of being reverted back to a regular "Test" build. The importance of this is along the same lines as the fact that the patch is available for download on the Battle.net app, it's definitely a positive development, but doesn't mean much in regards to a specific release date or window. Many players were very excited when the patch was first made available for pre-load 2 weeks ago (September 16th), assuming that the pre-patch would be coming int he following week. The first "Release" candidate appeared on the PTR a week ago (September 23rd) and was changed back to "Test" 2 days later. So basically, both of the above factors aren't very important or indicative of a release timing. The following one might be, however.

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The PTR Stress Test

The bigger news this week is the stress test happening today, where Blizzard asked everyone to come and smash the servers after they implemented some improvements presumably aimed at realm stability. This is a much stronger indication of progress towards a pre-patch release, as Blizzard might (rightfully) be expecting some big crowds to show up when the pre-patch hits - or it might just be testing for the actual Shadowlands launch. In any case, this also doesn't give us any definitive information, but does at least somewhat point to next week as the release date.

The Two Week Warning (or Was It?)

We've already discussed this, but it bears repeating as it's becoming much more relevant this week. In the big official post detailing everything that's coming with the pre-patch, released on September 21st, nestled and almost hidden in the tail end of it was a section on the end of BfA Season 4:

Blizzard LogoBfA Season End Warning (source)

BATTLE FOR AZEROTH PVP SEASON 4 ENDS AND THE POST-SEASON BEGINS

The gates will soon close on Battle for Azeroth PvP Season 4 with the release of the Shadowlands pre-expansion patch. Don’t worry though, you’ll still be able to take part in competitive PvP in a special post-season, which will end with the launch of the expansion. The new Shadowlands Season 1 will then go live shortly after the launch of Shadowlands.

If you participated in Season 4, to ensure you receive the rewards that you’re due, please keep the following in mind:

  • Refrain from transferring your character(s) to another realm or faction until after Battle for Azeroth Season 4 has ended.
  • Battle for Azeroth Season 4 titles and mounts will be awarded approximately two weeks after the season ends.

Facion-Based Rewards

Don’t forget—end-of-season rewards are based on your faction. If you transfer your character to the other faction, you must have 50 wins after your transfer to receive the reward and 150 wins after your transfer to earn Gladiator and Corrupted Gladiator.

Jump Into Post-Season

Once the pre-expansion patch is live, we’ll be kicking off a special post-season that last until the launch of Shadowlands. While placement on the season ladder is locked for any end-of-season rewards such as the Gladiator mount or title, players will be able to continue to earn Conquest towards the Conquest Schedule, gain random PvP loot, and collect catch-up gear rewarded from strongboxes. Players will also be able to purchase Corrupted Aspirant gear from vendors located in Stormwind and Ogrimmar.

So if we were to take this as a "regular" season end warning timing, aka 2 weeks, the pre-patch should hit next week, despite the post actually coming out on a Monday. As we discussed before, a very similar post was written for the Legion pre-patch, with the 2 week warning being in place there, but that post got its own news and blue posts, as it was singled out as being important, while this one was tucked in with some bigger announcements, which might indicate it wasn't really intended the same way.

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The Pre-patch Events Themselves and Their Duration

While you've probably already heard that the pre-patch only has "2 weeks worth" of events, that only relates to the changing and added activities during it. Week 1 starts the story off and week 2 adds more to it, but there's no "end" there, the event can continue for as many weeks as necessary with those activities already added in those 2 weeks. However, now that we're only 4+ weeks out from Shadowlands launch with no stated release date of the pre-patch, it is looking more likely that the 2 weeks of planned events and activities were very purposeful and that might truly be all we'll be getting of the pre-expansion event and patch.

Why Is This So Important to People?

This particular pre-patch, unlike many others, has many players hyped up and very much anxiously expecting it. The reasons are pretty clear as well, as in addition to the usual pre-patch stuff like the big class changes and reworks and the event itself, Shadowlands brings very many things people are excited for. The improved and new customization options are a big part of it, the removal of exalted requirements making Allied Races more accessible and many smaller additions besides, the major one is probably the biggest reason for the hype. The level squish, new starting experience and new level progression system via Chromie time, with it's significantly faster and better leveling is possibly the major selling point of the pre-patch. Getting more alts prepared for Shadowlands, especially with the concerns over Covenants and their restrictiveness is what has so many players waiting for the patch so intensely, not to mention the many new players that have been told the pre-patch is the best time to start their WoW journey.

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Conclusion: So When's the Pre-patch?

Well you've made it this far in the article so we'll just let you in on the secret exact release date of the patch that we know and were told by Blizzard a looong time ago. Or, wait, that's not a real thing. Well, you'll just have to settle for our opinion instead then. Many of the factors stated above do influence ours and everyone's thoughts on the release date, with varying degrees of importance. But the only thing we know for sure is that Blizzard still haven't announced an actual date, despite clearly seeing the fervor, excitement and, perhaps most importantly, frustration their community is showing at not knowing when it's coming. There may not have been specific release dates announced for previous expansions, but there certainly were more explicit pointers to it, but that doesn't mean that there should have been/still should be one for this one, considering the intense anticipation for it.

Currently the best bet going completely objectively is that the "everything coming in the pre-patch" pseudo-hidden BfA season warning ending section was indeed a two-week warning and Blizzard either thought that was very clear (despite no mention of a timeframe in there other than "soon") or knew it was vague but are sticking to their weird/unexplainable "no pre-patch release date announcements ever" policy. In either case the best bet for the pre-patch is still next week, October 6th/7th, but the closer we get to it the less likely it seems. If we do get a 2 week only pre-patch, many players would be very disappointed, as the possibly most anticipated pre-patch would be getting an extremely short duration.

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I can understand people wanting to take out Blightcaller, but the main thing i hate is the walking dead event, i heard that they made them only attack those that are flagged or something..

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40 minutes ago, Lithari said:

I can understand people wanting to take out Blightcaller, but the main thing i hate is the walking dead event, i heard that they made them only attack those that are flagged or something..

yeah i think its based on war mode so if you dont want to cuddel the slime ghuls you dont have to and i hope this is true cause man i realy want to enjoy my time trying out witch class i want to main for sl and maybe even lvl a new toon and i dont want to be hit by theses guys left and right

 

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30 minutes ago, N3ilo said:

yeah i think its based on war mode so if you dont want to cuddel the slime ghuls you dont have to and i hope this is true cause man i realy want to enjoy my time trying out witch class i want to main for sl and maybe even lvl a new toon and i dont want to be hit by theses guys left and right

 

Well, I think i will roll a warrior, it seems promising, the dot aspect seems more maintainable, since the dot lasts for 12 seconds and the ability has a 6 second cooldown.

 

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42 minutes ago, Lithari said:

Well, I think i will roll a warrior, it seems promising, the dot aspect seems more maintainable, since the dot lasts for 12 seconds and the ability has a 6 second cooldown.

 

i think i will go with guardian druid it looks very nice and combined with the very nice fary tree love covenant every thing looks perfect for me 

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1 hour ago, 1know said:

Hopefully It will take only 2 weeks, I mean, pre-patches are boring

I think its more about allowing us to get used to the new style of playing.

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Uncommon Patron
7 hours ago, Lithari said:

I think its more about allowing us to get used to the new style of playing.

Which takes about a day...

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1 hour ago, Calysia said:

Which takes about a day...

I takes longer than that, unless you have no responsibilities in real life.

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