Imagine stepping into a fantastical world where dragons soar through the skies, ancient evils threaten entire civilizations, and heroes rise to confront these threats.
This is the phenomenal realm of World of Warcraft, a game that has captured the hearts of millions. But what makes this online sensation even more fascinating? The ever-expanding streak of WoW expansions!
This article will take you on a captivating journey through each expansion, starting from the very beginning. Whether you’re a seasoned adventurer or a newcomer to Azeroth, explore the expansions of WoW!
WoW Expansions in Order
Since its first release, Here are all the Wow expansions in order.
1. World of Warcraft: Burning Crusade (2007)
World of Warcraft Burning Crusade marked the first official expansion for the legendary gaming franchise, adding exciting new content and opportunities for both long-time players and newcomers.
Two new playable races, Blood Elves for the Horde and Draenei for the Alliance, brought fresh adventures and unique abilities to the game.
In this expansion, the Player versus Player (PvP) system received an upgrade with the addition of the Eye of the Storm battleground and an entirely new team-based deathmatch mode for up to five players.
Burning Crusade also introduced engaging storylines and quests, some exclusive to the new races. The expansion’s name is inspired by the “Burning Legion,” a menacing army of mythical demons central to the expansion’s storyline.
Overall, Burning Crusade was a significant step forward in World of Warcraft’s journey, offering players more reasons to explore its ever-expanding world and enjoy exciting new adventures.
2. World of Warcraft: Wrath of the Lich King (2008)
When Wrath of the Lich King hit the scene in 2008, the level cap was one of the most noticeable changes. It leaped from 70 to 80, unlocking a new realm of power and abilities for players to explore as they progressed through the game.
But the excitement didn’t stop there. Blizzard introduced a groundbreaking concept: the “hero class.” The debut of Death Knights marked the arrival of this special class, allowing players to start above level 1, a game-changer.
These formidable characters were portrayed as heroes from the Alliance and Horde who had met their demise.
Raised by the enigmatic Lich King, these death knights added a fresh layer of strategy and combat options to the game.
Players could now venture into Northrend, a brand-new continent within Azeroth, offering a whole new realm for exploration and adventure.
3. World of Warcraft: Cataclysm (2010)
The next one in the franchise, Cataclysm, shook up the world of Azeroth in 2010, once again raising the game’s level cap, this time by just 5 levels, from 80 to 85. What set this expansion apart was the way it weaved its magic through an engaging storyline and gameplay.
Over 3,500 new quests were added, breathing new life into the game. Azeroth transformed, with many areas getting a facelift and mini-quests added to enrich the player experience.
Dive into the dungeons and raids as Cataclysm introduces fresh multiplayer co-op challenges. Plus, two new races, Worgen for the Alliance and Goblins for the Horde, entered the scene, offering players even more choices in character selection.
The expansion’s story got inspiration from old Warcraft games, especially Warcraft II, where Deathwing the Destroyer made a comeback. This caused a big problem called the Cataclysm, messing up the game world. Players had to go on exciting adventures and face new tough challenges.
4. World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria (2012)
Mists of Pandaria, the 2012 expansion, was all about fresh fun. It introduced a cool new class called the monk and a brand-new race, the Pandaren. The Pandaren have an interesting backstory.
Originally, they were created as a silly April Fool’s joke for Warcraft III, but players loved them so much that they found their way into World of Warcraft.
What’s nifty about the Pandaren is that they don’t start with the Alliance or the Horde. Players get to pick which side they want to join, making for an interesting twist.
This expansion also brought challenge modes into the game. These modes challenge you to complete dungeons quickly to earn cool rewards.
Plus, those in-game pets you used to look at? Now you can have them duke it out in the Pet Battle System, a fun new addition. You can even customize your pets with a new class system.
And if that’s not enough, the level cap got bumped up to 90, giving you more adventures to dive into. Mists of Pandaria was all about adding fun and excitement to your World of Warcraft experience.
5. World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor (2014)
In 2014, Warlords of Draenor came charging into the World of Warcraft scene. One of the first things players attracted was the level cap getting a big boost, jumping up to 100. This meant that characters could now reach new heights of strength and unlock even more impressive abilities.
But it wasn’t just about the numbers. The game got a dose of extra polish with new facial expressions and animations, making the experience more immersive.
When you look at Warlords of Draenor compared to other expansions, it might not be the largest, but it didn’t come without cool stuff. It introduced a new raid method, making the game more challenging and fun.
Plus, it lets players make their special places in the game called garrisons. So, even though it wasn’t the biggest expansion, it brought some exciting features to World of Warcraft.
6. World of Warcraft: Legion (2016)
When Legion arrived in 2016, it brought the game a fresh breeze of excitement. Players now had the chance to level up to 110, which became the new base level, a big change. Blizzard also decided not to charge for previous expansion packs, making it more accessible.
But the real magic of Legion was the patches that balanced raid tiers, introduced new dungeons, and amped up PvP modes. These changes kept the gameplay engaging and well-rounded.
Perhaps the most thrilling addition was the introduction of Demon Hunters, a hero class not seen since Wrath of the Lich King.
These characters started at level 98, thrusting players into a prequel storyline before fully immersing them in the game world. The new Mythic Plus dungeon difficulty cranked up the challenge, enticing players with great rewards for completing it.
Thus, Legion was a game-changer, elevating the World of Warcraft experience to a new level of adventure and challenge.
7. World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth (2018)
The Battle for Azeroth expansion was a game-changer in many ways. First off, the level cap upscaled from 110 to 120, opening up new frontiers of power and possibilities. But that was just the beginning.
Two new continents were introduced, each teeming with adventures waiting to be discovered. What shook things up, though, was the concept of allied races. Now, races once tied to one faction could join the other, creating new dynamics.
To unlock these allied races, players had to complete quest chains that led to forming alliances with races that had previously been exiled or defected from their factions.
The game’s system requirements got a bump, but even budget gaming PCs could handle most aspects of the game comfortably. Indeed, the Battle for Azeroth truly brought a battle for power, territory, and much fun to the World of Warcraft universe.
8. World of Warcraft Classic (2019)
Released in 2019, This expansion of World of Warcraft Classic wasn’t your typical one; it was more like a time-traveling journey. It introduced servers that whisked players back to the original, untouched version of WoW.
For those yearning to relive the “vanilla” WoW experience or for newcomers curious about the game’s roots, these Classic servers offered a portal to the past.
On these servers, you could play the game as it existed in September 2006, just before the launch of the Burning Crusade expansion. It was a chance to step into the same world and experience the same challenges that captivated players in the early days of World of Warcraft.
Classic was a nostalgic nod to the game’s history, allowing players to relish the adventures of yesteryear. So this was nothing more than a nostalgic journey for the old gamers who stuck to this franchise since day one!
9. World of Warcraft: Shadowlands (2020)
With this expansion, a unique change arrived on the scene. For the first time, the maximum level cap was trimmed down. Players who had conquered the 120-level pinnacle in Battle for Azeroth were reset to level 60 in Shadowlands.
Although it’s officially the 10th major installment in the series, most players consider it the true 8th expansion when we exclude WoW Classic from the count.
Shadowlands made its grand entrance in November 2020, bringing a new realm, the “Realm of the Dead,” and a wealth of exciting features. It was a fresh, intriguing chapter in the ever-evolving story of World of Warcraft.
10. Burning Crusade Classic (2021)
Following the success of WoW Classic, Blizzard made another player-pleasing move by launching Burning Crusade Classic servers. These servers allowed players to relive the game as it was after the release of the Burning Crusades expansion.
The Burning Crusade Classic servers debuted on June 1, 2021, allowing players to rewind to a pivotal point in World of Warcraft’s history and savor the challenges and adventures of that era. It was yet another nostalgic journey for fans of the game.
11. Wrath of the Lich King Classic (2022)
In April 2022, Blizzard made a thrilling announcement for World of Warcraft enthusiasts by unveiling two exciting expansions.
First on the list was the Wrath of the Lich King classic server option, a nostalgic journey back to 2008, when the iconic Lich King storyline and Death Knights were first introduced.
12. World of Warcraft: Dragonflight (2022)
Accompanying the Wrath of the Lich King classic servers, Blizzard unveiled the new expansion, Dragonflight. This expansion took flight in November 2022 and introduced many exciting features.
Players got to explore new playable race/class combinations with Dracthyr Evokers, soar through the skies on dragons, experience a complete talent system revamp, and discover a host of new zones and dungeons.
That’s all for the current scenario, but Blizzard also announced some futuristic expansions we’ve covered here.
Here are some of the expansions that gonna release in upcoming years accordingly.
13. World of Warcraft: The War Within (TBA)
At BlizzCon 2023, Blizzard dropped another bombshell, announcing the next three expansions, all part of the Worldsoul Saga trilogy.
The first in the trilogy, titled The War Within, will introduce players to a subterranean map called Azeroth, featuring fresh zones, a new allied race known as Earthen Dwarves, and, of course, brand new dungeons and raids.
14. World of Warcraft: Midnight (TBA)
As part of the Worldsoul Saga unveiled at BlizzCon 2023, Blizzard revealed another WoW: Midnight would be the second installment in the series, marking the 11th expansion in the game’s history. Midnight’s storyline is set in the Old World in Qule’thalas and focuses primarily on a Void invasion.
15. World of Warcraft: The Last Titan (TBA)
Finally, Blizzard saved the best for last with The Last Titan, the third and final expansion in the Worldsoul Saga and the 12th in the series.
This expansion will transport players back to the Old World, specifically Northrend, and promises the return of the Titans in an epic showdown.
These Expansions were released time by time to give players a new experience every time and something fresh to explore.
World of Warcraft has had many exciting expansions that added new stuff to the game. We discussed these Wow expansions in order, from the first to the latest ones.
Some made the game bigger, some let you go back in time, and some introduced cool new things to do. The game keeps changing and growing, so there’s always something fun to look forward to. It’s a game that never gets old!