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Blizzard’s recent convention has wrapped up, and the big news revolves around the announcement of their forthcoming World of WarCraft expansion, Warlords of Draenor. As a lapsed player I followed this announcement with interest, and it’s from that angle we’re going to look at it today.

World of WarCraft: Warlords of Draenor

Like I said, I dropped out of WoW’s masses (along with a couple million other players in the last couple years), quitting about four months into the Cataclysm expansion. I came back for a few short bursts during Mists of Pandaria but never stuck. I’d moved on to the likes of Guild Wars 2 (which I still play regularly) and Blizzard’s giant’s slower pace and quaint graphics lost their charm for me. With that in mind let’s see what Warlords of Draenor has in store that might draw the old guard like myself back into action.

World of WarCraft: Warlords of Draenor

One big change is that we’re going back to Outland, before it was Outland. This is the orc and Draenei home world as it was before the shattering that left it as level 60-70 players know – and often loathe – it today. For the first time since Wrath of the Lich King there will be 10 new levels to progress through, plus a free one-time token to level any character to 90 so you can get right to the new stuff. Personally this last part is appealing because I never got into the Mists of Pandaria content, so being able to take my level 85 paladin from Cataclysm (I do own MoP, just never really played it) and skip that continent completely sounds great. Likewise, if you have an old favorite you abandoned in Outland (or anywhere else) you can give them the one-time boost and make them viable again.

The second thing that really caught my eye is the addition of player garrisons. You will get to build, design, and staff a garrison that will reportedly be tied to your story experience. Said garrison will provide various benefits depending on how you build and staff it. Apparently you’ll be able to recruit followers who will quest and craft for you, even while offline.

World of WarCraft: Warlords of Draenor

Visually the original race player models are getting redone to higher poly models along the lines of the newer races. This has been requested – I believe – since the Burning Crusade expansion so it’s nice to see Blizzard finally getting around to it.

Other more expected content – new dungeons, battlegrounds, talents, and raids – will be coming as well. I haven’t seen any information about a beta – let alone a release date – so keep an eye on All Around Gaming Hub for more information.