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WoW Dragonflight Release Date, Leaks & Updates

The next World of Warcraft expansion will include playable dragons, rideable dragons, and a trip to the dragon homeland.

World of Warcraft: Dragonflight is the ninth expansion for the MMO.and it will transport us from the Shadowlands to the mythical Dragon Isles. There will be playable dragons, rideable dragons, and playable dragons riding rideable dragons. We’ll travel to the dragons’ home, where the Alliance and Horde will face some newly awakened ancient mysteries.

Dragonflight does not yet have a firm release date, but it does not mean that we will have to wait until next year. There’s much to learn about the next expansion, including new areas, races, interface updates, talent system changes, and the Dragonflight alpha. So, if you’re interested, here’s what we know about World of Warcraft: Dragonflight.

Is there a WoW: Dragonflight alpha available?

There has been some concern about Dragonflight’s release date of 2022 with no evidence of alpha testing. Everything goes as per the plan for a more focused testing period, which is now underway (opens in a new tab).

If you want to get into the Dragonflight alpha or beta phases, go to the official Dragonflight website (which opens in a new tab) and click the “Beta Opt-in” button at the bottom.

When will WoW: Dragonflight be released?

World of Warcraft: Dragonflight slate for release in 2022. Sometime near the end of the year—no specific date has been announced. You can also pre-order(opens in a new tab) the expansion now, which will be available “on or before December 31, 2022.”

Most expansions have traditionally launched in the second half of the year, between August and December, so this makes more sense than our initial thoughts. We speculated that Dragonflight might not arrive until early 2023. The final season of Shadowlands will be shorter than usual to make room for more expansion. It’s because Shadowlands Season 4 (which opens in a new tab) is about to release later this summer.

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Quick facts about World of Warcraft: Dragonflight Level Cap: 70

Dracthyr, which are Dragons, is a new playable race.

Dragons are also new mounts.

New zones: There are four new zones and one new starter zone. 

System updates include a redesign of the HUD, a new talent system, and updates to the professions.

Eight new dungeons and a new raid add to the group content.

New race/class pairings

The new playable dragon race in World of Warcraft is also its class.

One can play as a dragon in the next World of Warcraft expansion. The Dracthyr has two forms: draconic and humanoid, which you can customize when creating your Dracthyr character.

Here are some more Dracthyr specifics:

  • Dracthyr begins at level 58.
  • Dracthyr wears mail armor.
  • They each have their starting area.
  • Two specializations are available: a mid-range DPS and a healer.

New zones and stories in World of Warcraft: Dragonflight

The Dragon Isles, dragon kinds’ homeland, will be added in the Dragonflight expansion. The four new zones are Waking Shores, Ohn’ahran Plains, Azure Span, and the ancient Thaldraszus.

The Dragon Isles have always been a mysterious part of WoW lore. Now you’ll be flying headfirst into all of their ancient secrets. Blizzard explained during the reveal that the Dragon Isles were the center of the dragon kingdom when the world was new.

Long ago, the division of Azaroth into continents rendered magic dormant, forcing dragon kind to abandon the Isles. No point in guessing that dragons’ elemental energy will not remain dormant for much longer.

Aside from dragons, there are several other mortal races you’ll encounter on the Isles. The half-giant elemental Djaradin are long-time dragon foes. Tuskarr, the walrus-like creatures, also make a reappearance. Blizzard also mentions an ancient Centaur civilization living on the Isles.

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RIDING A DRAGON

Dragon riding appears to be far more appealing than flying.

You won’t be able to play as a dragon because Dragonflight is obsessed with them. A dragon, known as the Dragon Isle Drake, can also be used as a mount. Blizzard explained that your drake mount is fully customizable, with various appearance unlocks (snouts, horns, tails, and more) and skills for flying further and faster.

Ion Hazzikostas, WoW’s game director, has confirmed that Dragon Riding unlocks will be account-wide. “We’ve discussed the philosophy of what should be a character-specific progression, as opposed to progression made by you, the human behind the keyboard, across your accounts. The ease of movement seemed to be one of those things that is only enjoyable in one direction. It would be inconvenient to have to re-unlock it on subsequent characters.”

Unlike flight, as it currently exists in WoW, dragon riding is a bit more involved. According to Blizzard, riding your drake is something new, a different way of getting around. With new animations for diving and barrel rolling around the Isles, Blizzard’s developers discussed how momentum and gravity play a role in dragon riding.

While not a replacement for traditional flying, Dragon riding will allow you to take to the skies in the new Dragonflight zones. The ability to fly is typically earned only halfway through an expansion. It secures behind a specific set of achievements.

And, while Dragonflight will be the same, dragon-riding means you won’t have to rely on walking everywhere until that happens.

PROFESSIONS UPDATED

Dragonflight professions will update.

For the new expansion, we will redesign works. Blizzard has detailed the new systems here (opens in a new tab). Still, I’ll review some of the most significant changes in Dragonflight. They are as follows:

  • Orders for Crafting
  • Specializations
  • Stats
  • Quality 

Crafting Orders allows you to place orders for almost any craftable item through an “auction house-like interface.” It essentially means that you can customize an item to your liking using the reagents of your choice but have it crafted for you by someone else. Crafters who pick up these orders will compensate for their time.

By specializing, you can concentrate on a specific area within your field of study. There haven’t been many details released about how this will work. Still, it sounds similar to the old system specializations, such as having to choose between Goblin and Gnomish engineering.

Profession stats will introduce four new ways to improve your crafting efficiency, and you’ll be able to equip them to gain their benefits.

The Dragonflight profession stats are as follows:

Inspiration: Crafting this recipe with extra skill has an x% chance of inspiring you.

If you are resourceful, you have an x% chance of using fewer tradable reagents, such as ore.

Multicraft: You have an x% chance of making more items. It only works on stackable item recipes.

Crafting Time: Crafting takes x% less time.

Crafted, including consumables, will be assigned one of five new Quality levels. The caliber of the supplies used and your level of expertise and crafting stats will determine this. Higher quality equipment has a higher item level than consumables, which have a longer duration or more charges. Contrary to consumables, which have a long-term or more direction, higher quality equipment has a higher item level. The quality of the item you craft using gathered materials, such as herbs, ore, and leather, will depend on one of three new quality levels.

There is now a new Dragonflight profession bag slot.

Professions, as previously stated, will be redesigned. So you’ll need plenty of space to store your crafting materials, especially now that you’ll be dealing with different qualities.

“Think about what the reagent bank tab is in your local bank,” Ion Hazzikostas explained in a recent interview. “One of the first questions and responses from the team was, ‘I don’t have any backspace as it is.’ This is terrible. Please don’t give me any more garbage to stuff in my bags.'”

The new professions bag will be significantly more significant than the ones previously used. There’s no word on how many slots it will have, but it appears you won’t have to struggle to find a place for all of your reagents. “Not endless, but the intent is big,” Hazzikostas explained.

Talented people are returning to their roots.

Talent Trees have returned, and they resemble their pre-Mists of Pandaria counterparts. You can now choose six talents for your specialization, with three options in each row. Dragonflight will reintroduce a more complicated talent system.

Instead of having a tree for each class’s specs, Dragonflight gives you a prominent “class tree” and a second “specialization tree,” depending on your current role. As a result, you have significantly more options. In addition, you can save profiles for different talent tree setups. We enable you to switch between them for various types of content quickly.

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The 18-year-old user interface exists.

There’s no denying that World of Warcraft’s UI is showing its age, and Dragonflight will bring the first major overhaul in nearly 18 years. The upcoming update will make the UI cleaner and less cluttered and allow you to move individual elements around the screen.

You can save UI profiles just like talents and have a specific setup load automatically for different specializations. Suppose you’re a healer, for example. In that case, you’ll want party or raid frames in an easily accessible location on your screen, whereas a DPS player may prefer those frames off to the side and out of the way.

The UI revamp will not eliminate the need for WoW addons(opens in a new tab). Still, it will allow us to be less reliant on them for basic customization, which can only benefit our overall experience.

Rogues, mages, and priests can be of any race.

Traditional ties between classes to the race you choose, some being far more strict than others—yes, I’m looking at you, druids. While this will remain true for many classes in Dragonflight, if you want to play a mage, priest, or rogue, you can choose any race you wish to.

The eight new race/class combinations are as follows:

Mage Tauren

Highmountain Mage Tauren

Tauren, priest of the Highmountain

Priest of the Orcs

Rogue Tauren

Tauren rogue from the mountains

Rogue Draenei

Rogue of the Lightforged Draenei

Raids should see the return of group loot.

Personal loot may have solved many issues with players unfairly distributing loot via the old Master Loot system, but it introduces its problems. Thankfully, at least for raids, Group Loot will return to Dragonflight.

The goal is to transition from personal loot to a shared pool of loot in which you kill a raid boss and roll for the items on the corpse. You can, of course, distribute them or exchange them with friends. “That’s a world we think we’d like to be in again, so we’re still ironing out the details,” game director Ion Hazzikostas explained. “Our current plan is to have Dragonflight raid bosses work that way.”

Sylvanas, what about you?

Unfortunately, she’ll be too preoccupied with her (endless) weekly Maw quest to pay much attention to the next expansion.

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