The clock has officially been turned back. Back to one date, Nov. 23, 2004. People all worldwide have been going crazy for the game’s release, and that game is the up and coming “World of Warcraft.”
“World of Warcraft” released to a massive fan population back then, and as the years passed into the late 2000s, the player base only continued to grow. With the release of the expansions “The Burning Crusade” in January of 2007, and “Wrath of the Lich King” in November of 2008, the game that only four years prior hit the markets, had become mainstream among adults and teenagers alike. However, since the release of “Cataclysm” in 2010, the player base has slowly but surely dwindled its numbers over this decade. This led to a growing push for the return of the game’s base state, also known as “Vanilla.”
At Blizzcon 2016, the Warcraft’s creators’ yearly convention, then-producer J. Allen Brack was asked a question by a fan during a Q&A panel about if there was any possibility for a “legacy server.” J. Allen Brack specifically replied to him with a very controversial answer among the Warcraft player base: “You think you do, but you don’t.” This immediately skyrocketed the want for a Vanilla Legacy Server, as over the course of two years since the incident, players expressed their interests on social media platforms and online forums. Just one year later, the same man who said the famous answer to the fan that year prior, introduced the legacy servers, called “World of Warcraft: Classic”.
Since the announcement in 2017, the online trailer has amassed over 2.7 million views, and has gained worldwide support from fans old and new. “World of Warcraft: Classic” just launched this past Tuesday, and it once more gained worldwide popularity, shattering streaming site Twitch’s viewer counts with its peak at over 1 million people watching across the globe. The overwhelming response surpassed Blizzard’s expectations, as hundreds of thousands of people were overflowing the many realms and servers that they provided, forcing them to open many more servers on the European, Oceanic and North American programs. By having more and more stabilization as the week went on, the fans and the original creators of “World of Warcraft” expressed how fantastic it was to finally return to what made the game-changing MMORPG what it was.
However, not all fans were looking forward to “Classic,” thinking of it as appealing to nostalgia. Many users voiced their displeasure on Blizzard’s “World of Warcraft” forums page, which opened much more criticism, which is what the current retail “World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth” is for if Classic does not appeal to them. The majority of current, new and returning players went back to “World of Warcraft: Classic” with an open mind, and it so far has had such a positive reaction, much to J. Allen Bracks’ chagrin.
As someone who has played “World of Warcraft” for nearly a decade, give it a shot if you are interested. Whether you’d be a Dungeons and Dragons player, or just someone new to the gaming scene, “World of Warcraft: Classic” is for you and I hope to see you back in Old Azeroth!
Jeff Babcock is a third-year student majoring in communications. JB884128@wcupa.edu