World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade Classic Launches This Year

After the success of World of Warcraft: Classic, Blizzard is preparing to take the re-release of its MMORPG in its original form to the next expansion, with the launch of The Burning Crusade sometime later this year.

The news was planned to be announced at this year’s BlizzCon event taking place online tomorrow, but a leaked early press kit revealed the expansion early.

The Burning Crusade was originally released in 2007, and will add two new races to World of Warcraft Classic’s playable roster — the Alliance Draenei, and the Horde Blood Elves. It raises the level cap to 70, and sends players to the broken world of Outland to fight the invading Burning Legion across areas such as the scorched Hellfire Penninsula, the swampy Zangarmarsh, and the mystical Terokkar Forest. It also introduced flying, allowing players to earn mounts that would let them soar across Outland.

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As with World of Warcraft: Classic, Blizzard intends to release content from the original game in phases, including the opening of the Black Temple, Zul’Aman, and the Sunwell.

However, Blizzard is also planning on preserving the original Classic experience for those who want it. Players will be able to choose when the expansion launches whether they want to bring their Classic characters to The Burning Crusade expansion with the rest of their server, or if they want to move them to a new server that will remain perpetually in original Classic.

As with the rest of Classic, The Burning Crusade will be available free with existing World of Warcraft subscriptions.

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Rebekah Valentine is a news reporter for IGN. You can find her on Twitter @duckvalentine.

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