Patch 8.1 Change Summary (BfA 8.1)
Welcome! Whether you are a new player starting in December of 2018, took a large break and are coming back for Patch 8.1, or are a veteran player and want to make sure you are not missing anything from the new patch, you have come to the right place! See below for our Patch 8.1 change summary with links to all of our relevant guides!
Item Level Changes
Item level rewards have been increased from dungeons, PvP, and warfronts. Patch 8.1 also brings revision to Mythic+ rewards by key level and a new raid that will be released shortly after Patch 8.1 releases with sizeable item level gear increases! These item level changes can be seen in detail in our BfA Level 120 Battle Guide.
Two New Raids
There will be two raids released at some point during Patch 8.1. The first will be the Battle of Dazar'alor and the second, coming after a period of time, will be the Crucible of Storms. The Battle of Dazar'alor will be a nine encounter raid where each boss drops a piece of Azerite gear! The Crucible of Storms will be a smaller three encounter raid that will have heavy lore implications!
Mythic Plus Season 2
Season two of Battle for Azeroth will add a new affix to Mythic Plus dungeons on difficulty 10 or higher called Reaping. Not much is confirmed about the affix, but Bwonsamdi raising corpses to chase after you in dungeons probably will not be fun.
Battle for Darkshore Warfront
A new warfront will emerge in Darkshore where the Horde and Alliance compete for vital war territory in a thematic battle very similar to the Battle for Stormgarde. This extra warfront allows for essentially a doubling of contribution phases and quest reward battle phases. New mounts, pets, toys, and a world boss await. Item level gear from warfronts has been increased from item level 340 to item level 370 in the victories while the quest victory available once per warfront cycle has been upgraded to item level 400! Check out the new rewards, achievements, and gear available in our Warfronts Guide.
Island Expeditions Overhaul
Island Expeditions have had numerous changes to them including two new islands to explore, a reduction in the weekly cap of Azerite needed from 40,000 to 36,000, and a bonus treasure map item available upon the weekly quest completion that gives your follower a lucrative mission that awards either 2,000 Azerite Power or 5,000g with the 200% success bonus of an additional 1,500 AP! The treasure maps can also award any of the toys, pets, or mounts that can drop from the Island Expeditions. Island Expeditions have also had a vendor added where you can spend your Seafarer's Dubloons! All of this, as well as two unique strategies, one for completion and one for loot, can be found in our Island Expeditions Guide.
Azerite Gear Revamp
Azerite gear no longer comes from your weekly chest. Instead, you will receive a new currency called Titan Residuum that can be used to purchase Azerite gear tokens or even specific pieces of Azerite gear! The Titan Residuum can be farmed as well in the form of scrapping Azerite gear that comes from all other sources after Patch 8.1 launches. This, and other information, is a plenty in our BfA Level 120 Battle Guide.
Incursions and Service Medals
Incursions are a new feature in Patch 8.1 and look a lot like the Legion invasions from a time in the past. These are accessible to all characters on an account that has World Quests unlocked, so this will be a great opportunity to level alternate characters as well as acquire item level 370 Azerite gear and weapons! You can read more about the incursions in our BfA Level 120 Battle Guide and more about acquiring the Service Medals and what you can buy with them in our Warfronts Guide.
Reputation Changes — Paragon Caches and War Campaign
Some reputation changes have come around in Patch 8.1 that will be quality of life improvements. The paragon caches have returned, except these caches differ from their Legion cousins in that they do not contain mounts. They will, however, contain new items to Patch 8.1. The new items are various toys in addition to 2,500 Azerite, 4,000+ gold, 20 Service Medals, and 500 War Resources. The War Campaign has seen a large increase in the reputation rewards earned in order to lower and eliminate the time needed to wait to progress your War Campaign. This will expedite the process for players to unlock their 5th follower and catch up to the story being told to this point.
Some additions have been made to professions to give crafters more recipes for item level 340 bind-on-equip gear, the bind-on-pickup crafting gear has been upgraded from item level 355/370/385 to 385/400/415. A new feast finds its way into the cooks of Azeroth who will find a use for some excess Sanguicell lying around. All of these changes, as well as the location for all 3 star recipes, can be found in our Rank 3 Recipe Locations Guide.
Leveling Experience Change
The leveling experience has been greatly shortened for all levels from 20 through 110. There are new heirlooms, a new experience flask, and a much shortened period of time needed to get through the bands of levels. Level 20 to 60 has had its total experience needed reduced by 31%, Level 60 to 80 has been reduced by 34%, and all of the other levels from 80 to 110 have been reduced by 25%. The new experience flask can be purchased for a very insignificant amount of Service Medals and last for 60 minutes, persist through death, and provide a stat bonus! More detailed information about the leveling experience change can be found in our Leveling Guide.
Heritage Armor for Blood Elves and Dwarves
By simply being a Blood Elf who is exalted with Silvermoon City for the Horde or a Dwarf who is exalted with Ironforge for the Alliance, you can unlock the heritage armor designed for Blood Elves and Dwarves after just a short quest chain that is available to start in Orgrimmar or Stormwind's Embassy.
Alternate Character Quality of Life Changes
In Patch 8.1, an item can be purchased called the 7th Legion Scouting Map and Honorbound Scouting Map. These items can be purchased by any character who has earned the Pathfinder, Part One achievement in Battle for Azeroth to send the item to alternate characters. Using this item on an alternate character will unlock all of the available flight paths! Also, the Champions of Azeroth reputation is account wide, so if you have a character that is already at least Revered, then all of your alternate characters can upgrade their Heart of Azeroth as soon as Patch 8.1 goes live!
New Pet Battle Things!
Patch 8.1 introduces a few new things for avid pet battlers. The first is the Family Battler achievement that has you focusing on defeating the pet battle trainers around Zandalar and Kul Tiras in a unique way with only using battle pets of the same type. These trainers battles can be repeated, so those of you in desperate desire of the Wicker Wraith pet can earn your new companion very quickly! There is also a new mega pet battle dungeon in Gnomeregan, which is similar to the Wailing Caverns pet battle dungeon with its own rewards. The quests to start this epic pet adventure begin in Dazar'alor or in Boralus.
New Follower Equipment
Some new champion follower equipment pieces have been added. First, the Monelite Whetstone is available from the Honorbound or 7th Legion vendors for only 200 War Resources as long as you are at least honored in reputation. Alchemists can craft a very useful item called the Vial of Obfuscation which removes the penalty for the Stealth type missions that reduce the effectiveness of a mission with troops by 100%. Both of these items should give your followers an alternative to the crafting material equipment options.
Patch 8.1 has a lot of additions, changes, and improvements to World of Warcraft as we know it. We hope that this guide has been helpful in navigating all of the changes made as we push forwards into Patch 8.1, The Tides of Vengeance!
- 11 Dec. 2018: Added pet battle information and follower equipment updates.
- 07 Dec. 2018: Guide added.
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