WoW Dragonflight Expansion Overview
The WoW Dragonflight expansion release date is November 28 for realms based in the USA, and 29 for EU and most other regions’ servers. Starting with the WoW Dragonflight expansion leak in early April, the community received a steady stream of Dragonflight news, official previews, and developer interviews revealing various facts regarding the Dragonflight expansion and its features. Keeping up with all this information has proven difficult for everyone except the most dedicated fans. In this article, we have compiled WoW Dragonflight expansion details revealed from different sources. Use it to discover the most important facts concerning the Dragonflight expansion, its Dragon Isles setting, the new race and hero class, and more!
Dragonflight Expansion Premise
As can be expected based on its name, dragons lie at the forefront of the World of Warcraft Dragonflight expansion. Those ancient and powerful beings have played many parts throughout the MMORPG’s lifetime, appearing as antagonists and friends alike. Their mysterious point of origin, Dragon Isles, was alluded to in earlier storylines. Dragonflights abandoned that archipelago twenty millennia ago, only returning there now. Yet the proud creatures’ attempts to reclaim their home have run into resistance from their ancestral enemies. This opposition drove the dragons to reach out to their friends among the mortals, who in turn are concerned with supernatural turmoil that threatens to spill out beyond Dragon Isles.
In many ways, the WoW Dragonflight expansion is intended as a return to the MMORPG’s roots after the bizarre cosmic conflict of its predecessor. Adventurers are summoned to explore a new region of their homeworld and defeat a direct source of menace for their friends. Numerous familiar faces among the dragons, such as Alexstrasza, Wrathion, and Chromie, aid this goal. Developers have expressed their wish to author a more down-to-earth, character-driven narrative - as much as that may be possible in the intensely magical environment of Dragon Isles. Antagonists for the Dragonflight expansion include proto-dragons and half-giants, though other, less straightforward menaces might appear later as well.
Dragonflight Expansion Dragon Isles Zones
The Dragonflight expansion is set primarily on the Dragon Isles. This primeval archipelago bears traces of draconic presence and supernatural forces that shaped it in the distant past. That is reflected in its elementally-marked biomes and curiously dragonlike fauna. As elemental energies surge forth again, the Dragon Isles has become a vibrant and magical place, but also one full of unpredictable dangers. The bulk of the new zones is situated on the central island, whose size rivals Northrend. It is defined by its high altitudes. Heroes will need to climb from coastal lowlands to a remote peak as they experience the Dragonflight expansion campaign. There are four new zones accessible to all, each with a distinct theme:
- The Waking Shores: Volcanic, rocky coastline where explorers from other continents establish their initial base. Red and black dragonflights both dwelled here once, but now they must contend with magma-wielding Djaradin half-giants to recapture their homes;
- Ohn’ahran Plains: Wild grasslands, valleys, and plateaus that forced the developers to extend draw distance to properly convey their size. Shared by green dragons and fierce centaur clans;
- The Azure Span: Likely the biggest of those maps, and one showing the biggest difference in heights and climates. A rocky tundra containing both scenic autumnal forests and ice-covered waterways, the natural habitat of blue dragons and friendly tuskarr;
- Thaldraszus: The pinnacle of Dragon Isles, including imposing mountains and caves as well as massive draconic and titanic structures. Bronze dragons found their home here, but share the Dragonflight expansion hub settlement of Valdrakken with their kindred.
Dragonflight Expansion Renown and Dragon Isles Factions
Reputation is among the long-standing systems that underwent rework for the Dragonflight expansion. Adventurers still earn reputations with specific factions by performing various tasks on their behalf. However, reputation points now go towards raising Renown, which happens every time the hero hits 1,000 Reputation. Each point of Renown provides additional rewards, from the ability to purchase unique cosmetics to access special events. There are four major Renown factions in the Dragon Isles, each focused on different kinds of activities:
- Dragonscale Expedition: An Alliance-Horde joint effort at uncovering the secrets of the Dragon Isles. They unlock climbing and cataloging quests as well as other exploration activities, grant entrance into a Dragon Isles portal network, and help hunt for treasures;
- Valdrakken Accord: The coalition of dragonflights coordinating efforts to take back the Dragon Isles. Their operations include Dragonflight expansion crafting and supply quests, open-world PvE activities, and Dragonriding mount races;
- Maruuk Centaur: Nomadic tribes from the flatlands. Heroes can prove their worth to them through hunting and caravan protection events, receiving boons including faithful animal companions;
- Iskaara Tuskarr: Mostly peaceful villagers who invite adventurers to Dragonflight expansion fishing and cooking events and offer special Dragon Isles tools to help with such activities. They also show interest in stories of victories over tough opponents throughout Dragon Isles.
Renown progressions for those factions are not exclusive. Indeed, certain Dragon Isles missions and activities allow adventurers to earn Renown with all groups at once. Most of the prizes, such as activity unlocks, are account-wide, though the Renown progress is not. Earning enough Reputation with any factions is mandatory to finish the Dragonflight expansion campaign, but the Renown gating approach of Shadowlands was not extended. Lesser groups with their own progression and rewards also exist. For instance, adventurers can pledge allegiance to Wrathion or Sabellian as the black dragons’ leaders every week, improving their reputations and earning unique titles and cosmetics from each.
Dragonflight Expansion Dungeons and Raids
At the outset, the Dragonflight expansion will contain eight original dungeons, one of which is a previously unknown section of the Classic era instance Uldaman. The Mythic Plus roster for each season shall include four Dragonflight expansion instances and four dungeons taken from older content. That way, the activity should remain fresh and provide players a priceless opportunity to claim updated versions of vintage loot. Available Affixes have been modified and will refresh more often. The finest dungeon plunder in Dragonflight expansion could only be claimed via Mythic +20 runs.
The opening Dragonflight expansion raiding instance is Vault of the Incarnates or VotI. It includes eight encounters connected to Primalist proto-dragons - the rough and chaotic antagonists of the orderly dragonflights. On top of “ordinary” endgame spoils, the first Dragonflight expansion raiding instance will provide opportunities for heroes to collect Primalist or Vault of the Incarnates Class Sets. More raids will follow as this era of gameplay continues. Unlike their predecessors, Dragonflight expansion raiding instances will be divided into three loot tiers, with medium-tier bosses giving medium-quality spoils. The Group Loot mechanic is back, distributing plunder based on players’ expressed intentions and luck.
Dragonflight Expansion New Race and Class
The Dragonflight expansion brings forth a new Hero Class: the Dracthyr Evoker. It is fully covered in our class Dracthyr Evoker preview. The most important details are summarized below:
- At least during the Dragonflight expansion, Evokers are exclusive to the Dracthyr race, who can belong to no other class;
- As Hero Class Dracthyr Evokers are subject to restrictions. A player can have a single Dracthyr Evoker in a server. All Evokers after the first one could only be placed in servers where the player has at least one hero with level 50 or higher;
- Evokers are spawned as level 58 adventurers, beginning play in an isolated starter zone in the Dragon Isles;
- Players must decide which of the two opposing coalitions their Dracthyr is affiliated with during the character generation process;
- Dracthyr can transform between draconic and humanlike shapes, with the former being required to use many of their racial abilities. Those include limited flight (a la Dragonriding mounts) and attacks using natural weaponry. Both shapes may be modified with many options;
- Evokers are spellcasters who evoke the draconic magics of the major dragonflights. They can choose between Devastation and Preservation specializations. Adherents of the former concentrate on harming foes at medium range, while the latter wields versatile healing powers;
- All Evoker spells are fueled by Mana, while some also utilize Essence, a Rune-like resource that recovers automatically outside of combat;
- Evoker players can elect to Empower certain spells in combat, reducing their casting speed to attach increasingly powerful effects.
Dragonflight Expansion Special Mounts
Dragonriding mounts are another hallmark of the Dragonflight expansion. This special category is made up of drakes from the Dragon Isles and defined by unique flying mechanics. Their riders must contend with a sophisticated flight physics engine that keeps track of momentum, variable altitudes, and mount Vigor. They will be helped by abilities that allow their mounts to alter their speed or elevation, along with performing more complex maneuvers. Dragonriding mounts also enjoy an unprecedented degree of customization, with players choosing between several basic species and modifying every part of their mount’s body with options unlocked throughout Dragonflight expansion content.
Those mounts and their peculiar mechanics will not work outside the Dragon Isles, at least until after the Dragonflight expansion. Normal flying mounts shall be grounded in the Dragon Isles, but they will operate as usual elsewhere. Pioneers can unlock Dragonriding mounts very early in the Dragonflight expansion storyline, and all subsequent adventurers belonging to the same account will get to ride them as soon as they arrive in Dragon Isles. Dragonriding is invaluable for exploring the Dragon Isles since they are vast and contain many high places, as well as spots that would be otherwise unreachable. The Dragonflight expansion also features PvE and PvP Dragonriding races.
Dragonflight Expansion Profession Changes
Professions receive many changes in Dragonflight expansion. Taken together, those innovations should drastically alter the workings of this system and the player-driven economy:
- Craft requests for specific items that can be assigned to guildmates, friends, or any other players. The one placing the orders does not need to possess their recipes or even applicable crafts;
- Soul binding items that crafters can produce for other people’s characters to bind;
- Quality ratings that modify item levels and other stats of crafted objects;
- Professional stats that affect the gathering and manufacturing processes and their results, including crafted object quality;
- Reinvented Dragonflight expansion specializations that allow players to improve professional stats and unlock certain recipes related to their chosen specialties;
- Dragonflight expansion professional equipment granting bonuses to professional stats. It does not occupy normal inventory slots;
- Recrafting crafted objects to improve quality or alter their stats through Dragonflight expansion reagents;
- Dedicated containers for reagents from all sources;
- Dragonflight expansion professional quests and events that interact with specialization and stat systems;
- Community areas with craft stations in the Dragonflight expansion hub.
Dragonflight Expansion Talent Trees
The talent system has been greatly simplified in expansions since Cataclysm. Dragonflight expansion changes reverse that policy to grant players more control over their builds. Upon leveling up, heroes will allocate points from separate progressions to purchase active abilities or passive bonuses in their core and specialization trees. Dragonflight expansion talent system talent progression is in the hands of the player, letting them decide which talents to pick at what point. Players can save particular talent builds and load them in resting areas, making it trivial to adjust to varying types of activity. The Dragonflight expansion talent calculator allows fans to research and plan their builds in advance.
Dragonflight Expansion PvP Tweaks
While PvP has not been the main area of attention for the Dragonflight expansion, it still received some notable changes and additions:
- All Conquest gear in Dragonflight expansion will have its own tier for PvP purposes. That means it will be flatly superior to equipment from any other sources in PvP, with the potential exception of the finest Mythic raid gear. Players could upgrade their Conquest gear to make it more effective in Dragonflight expansion PvE activities;
- Solo Rated Arena queuing will be enabled in the Dragonflight expansion via Rated Solo Shuffle, which will provide the same sorts of rewards as other ranked PvP activities;
- Nokhudon Proving Grounds are available as an original Dragon Isles Arena setting;
- Players can earn Dragonriding mount customization options from ranked PvP, notably with Dragonflight expansion seasonal Gladiator Titles;
- Multiple experimental PvP Brawl events will occur during the Dragonflight expansion.
Other Dragonflight Expansion Features
There are many other great and small adjustments on their way in the Dragonflight expansion that may exercise a significant influence on the player experience:
- After the previous levels squish, the leveling maximum is raised again for the Dragonflight expansion. Heroes are now capable of leveling to 70, and will need to do so to finish the Dragonflight expansion campaign and take on advanced World Quests;
- Having leveled up to 60 at least once using Battle for Azeroth content, players can advance their subsequent characters to 60 using alternative leveling environments provided by Chromie Time. This system now includes the outgoing expansion’s content as well;
- In the Dragonflight expansion, class combinations all races except the Dracthyr can select include Priests, Mages, and Rogues, enabling many long-sought character options;
- After many years, the user interface underwent a radical transformation for the Dragonflight expansion, with an emphasis on customization, accessibility, and wider monitor support. Many ideas were borrowed from popular add-ons;
- Boats in the Dragonflight expansion have clear indicators of arrival and departure times, visible at dockmaster NPCs;
- The Dragonflight expansion allows users to transmogrify common and poor quality items;
- Heroes could access the Dragonflight expansion Weekly Chest in Valdrakken. Like in the previous expansion, it will provide prize options based on the character’s participation in the latest Dragonflight expansion raid, Mythic Plus dungeons, and rated PvP;
- There will be no War Table Missions or temporarily-available mechanics like Covenant Abilities in the Dragonflight expansion.
Dragonflight Expansion Schedule
As with its predecessors, Dragonflight WoW expansion content will not be released in one go. The rollout schedule for the initial wave of Dragonflight expansion content is as follows:
- October 25: First pre-patch phase, implementing interface and talent tree updates;
- November 15: Second pre-patch phase, allowing WoW Dragonflight pre-order owners to create Dracthyr Evokers and complete their introductory storylines. The old continents will see invasion events. The newly-added Uldaman dungeon wing will be released in Normal mode;
- November 28: Dragonflight expansion launch date, rolling out the bulk of its features such as Dragon Isles zones and the eight initial dungeons;
- December 12: Beginning of Dragonflight expansion Season One for PvP and Mythic Plus content. VotI raiding instance release for all full-length modes;
- December 19, January 2, January 16: Launch dates for the three VotI Raid Finder Wings.
How Cakeboost Can Help
Many people are excited about the Dragonflight expansion. It promises to be a grand revival for the MMORPG after its divisive previous chapter. The prospects of traveling across Dragon Isles, refining builds using rejuvenated talent trees, or checking out any of several added character options will surely draw in many previously disillusioned fans. Tweaks to professions and the groundbreaking advanced flight system are also appealing. However, even with all the quality-of-life improvements introduced in the Dragonflight expansion, experiencing it fully will still require a major investment of playtime and effort.
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WoW Dragonflight Expansion FAQ