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Warlords of Draenor to be a $50 Expansion? And Something About Insta-90s March 10, 2014

Posted by Wilhelm Arcturus in Blizzard, entertainment, World of Warcraft.
Tags: ,

And while we were on the topic of insta levels…

Blizzard has finally opened up pre-orders for the Warlords of Draenor expansion.  The price falls between my expectations and my fears.  WoW expansions have been $40 items up until this point, while the EuroGamer article two weeks back said the expansion would be $60. (Though they deleted that without reference when Blizzard objected.)


The actual price, according to Blizzard’s announcement, is somewhere in between.   The standard edition will be $50, with the usual $20 bump to get the Digital Deluxe edition.  Presumably the physical Collector’s Edition will be an additional $20 on top of that, making it potentially a $90 purchase.  So there is your buy-in price for the next two years of WoW content… once it ships.

There were a couple of items of note in the announcement, starting with that potential ship date.

Pre-order announcement

Pre-order announcement

You probably cannot read it in the thumbnail, but if you expand it by clicking on it, you can see that they have tacked on a line about the expected release being in the Fall of 2014.  My September 9th guess seems even more optimistic at this point.  And, as somebody pointed out, Fall technically goes all the way out to December 20, 2014, though I would imagine that Blizzard would do all it could to get the expansion in the pipe at least a month before Christmas.  Like, maybe at the 10 year anniversary?  We shall see.  (Elsewhere Blizzard says, “Game is expected to release on or before 12/20/2014.”  If this were SOE, that would mean February.  And even with Blizzard, “expected” is a hedge and not a promise.)

Then there are the in-game items you get with the Digital Deluxe and Collector’s Edition.  A mount and a pet are the key items, and you get them as soon as you pre-order.

Dread Raven mount and hatching pet

Dread Raven mount and hatching pet

The other items, StarCraft II portraits and Diablo III banners don’t really thrill me.  Blizzard does insist on these cross-game items though.  Occasionally they are good.

And then there are some details about how the insta-90 process will work, including a 2 minute tutorial on YouTube, and what you will get with your character after you wave the magic level-up wand over it.

  • 150 gold
  • 4 Embersilk (22-slot) bags
  • A stack of 20 food items
  • Full set of spec-appropriate Item Level 483 (blue-quality) gear
  • If a boosted character was already level 60 or above, their existing Primary Professions and First Aid are bumped up to level 600
  • A faction-specific flying mount—a traditional Wind Rider for Horde or Gryphon for Alliance
  • Artisan flying—that’s one rank below max flight speed
  • Northrend, Kalimdor/Eastern Kingdoms, and Pandaria regional flying skills trained

That isn’t a bad list of items.  I’ll happily take one with the expansion, though I am not sure I will fork over $60 for any more after that.

Four 22 slot bags are more than any but my main have on them.  The gear is a decent start on things in Pandaria.  The flight boost, including opening up all the areas that require specific skills, certainly saves you some gold.  And then there is the boost to your primary professions and first aid.  No cooking, no fishing, and no archaeology I guess.  Have to level those up the old fashioned way.  But that is still enough to keep my Death Knight in the running as I try to decide which class to boost to 90.

So there we go.  This will have to keep us all busy… or not… in Azeroth through the summer.

Will Blizzard be able to keep the subscriptions from ebbing between now and then?


1. Wilhelm Arcturus - March 10, 2014

And within minutes of the pre-order going live the Blizzard store is having problems due to load according to Blizzard CS. Take our goddam money already!


2. Gripper - March 10, 2014

Got mine clean…..working ok at 1:36pm PST – now to figure what do I want to do with that boost…


3. gwjanimej - March 11, 2014

FYI, 483s are purples, not blues. :)


4. Wilhelm Arcturus - March 11, 2014

@gwjanimej – Word on the street is that they are iLevel 483 greens.


5. Pia - March 11, 2014

I just mousedover someone’s gear who just applied the instaboost, and its 450 greens all named “Communal”. (This was a priest.)


6. Syl (@Gypsy_Syl) - March 11, 2014

I’m not sure I follow completely with the insta-level 90; is there still one free boost per account or do you pay for it either way?

And my launch guess is early November :) given the last two expansions were end of September and start of December.


7. Codeblue - March 11, 2014

When you pre-order you get a free instant boost (per account that you pre-ordered for) to level 90 on any current toon or can create a new one. If it is over level 60 you get first aid set to max and both of your primary professions maxxed if you choose level 1 or have a level 59 or below you get no boost to professions. You will get all riding skills and green 483 armor and will log in at the timeless isle (bound to valley of whatever).
If you are boosting a new toon you will have to choose the spec ( a word of warning the lfr has many many many trying out new things so be aware its madness)
I think I jumped the gun too quick creating my monk ….I should have in retrospec …leveled him to 60 THEN boosted so I could have engineering maxxed it will be very very expensive to do it now.


8. anom - March 11, 2014

for the love of god quit giving Activision money what’s wrong with u ppl. I can see the insta 90 appeal since wow has no mid game but let’s be honest its end game is trash ne way


9. Xyd - March 12, 2014

Color me a sucker. I’m going to re-enable my WoW account so I can complete the pre-order. I guess their special offer will have achieved its goal for at least one suspended subscription.

Now I have to break it to my family that I’ll be disappearing for a couple weeks sometime in the Fall. Maybe I can hide for the duration of Christmas shopping. :-)


10. Wilhelm Arcturus - March 12, 2014

@Xyd – Cross-realm grouping, it works. We can go take out insta-90s out to Timeless Isle and die trying to get purple drops.


11. Draenor expansion to launch in “Fall 2014″ | GamingSF - March 13, 2014

[…] is hardly a shock, others have predicted it would take this long including many in my WoW guild. To me that’s reminiscent of the […]


12. Pia - March 14, 2014

@Xyd – yup yup, me too.


13. Leonaras - March 26, 2014

Tbh blizzard really throw themselves under the bus with the pricing here.

Thankfully you can get the game a bit cheaper on preorder through some third parties such as:


Ah well, i hope the whole character boost thing doesnt end up so popular, its detracting from the feel of wow in general.


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