World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade was the first expansion for the hit game from Blizzard, World of Warcraft. It was originally announced in October 2005 and released to the public starting in January 2007. It hit stores in North America, Europe, and Australia on Januray 16th, 2007. Korea followed with a release there on February 2nd, 2007. Then came the debut in both Taiwan and Hong Kong on April 3rd, 2007, followed at last by mainland China on September 6th. Its main features included the first increase of the level cap, allowing players to attain level 70, the introduction of two new races (the blood elves and the draenei) and the addition of a whole new zone, that being Outland. This new expansion included a dearth of new zones such as Terokkar forest, the new city of Shattrath, dungeons and raid encounters (such as Gruul's lair), and a whole new bestiary.
In preparation for the Burning Crusade, Blizzard released patch 2.0.1 in North America and Europe on December 5th, 2006. This patch introduced some of the upcoming content before the expansion released, such as the complete revamp of the honor system (now referred to by some as "the great honor nerf") a new type of PvP Arena matches and completely redesigned Looking For Group ("LFG") interface.
When it was released, the expansion came in both a standard and a Collector's Edition package. Of the many features in the Collector's Edition were a bonus "Behind-The-Scenes" DVD and an exclusive in-game Netherwhelp pet for collectors. One of the other nice features about this expansion was its backwards compatibility. Players with the "vanilla" wow version were still able to log in to non-upgraded accounts while using the new Burning Crusade client.
System requirements for both editions stayed unchanged for the most part, with the exception being the required network bandwidth. Initially WoW was designed to run on both 56k dialup and broadband but with the release of the xpac, a broadband connection was recommended due to the increase in data and graphics provided. The statement from Blizzard was that this change was also due to account for the size of future patches. they also stated that they would continue to offer support to players still on dialup, with the sole exception being in regards to patching issues.
The Burning Crusade expansion contains two new playable races:
The blood elves have two new starting areas located in the Eastern Kingdoms:
Similarly, the draenei have two starting zones off the west coast of Kalimdor:
With the expansion, the new lands of Outland were made available to players. This area can be reached through the Dark Portal in the Blasted Lands and portals in some of the major cities.
The new zones are as follows:
|Hellfire Peninsula||58 - 63|
|Zangarmarsh||60 - 64|
|Terokkar Forest||62 - 65|
|Nagrand||64 - 67|
|Blade's Edge Mountains||65 - 68|
|Netherstorm||67 - 70|
|Shadowmoon Valley||67 - 70|
The expansion also added many new dungeons, many of them with specific "wings" to speed up run times. Both Outland and Azeroth had them added so players not wishing to instance in Outlands can still experience a few in the "old world". These dungeons contain a plethora of new equipment including Tier 4 , Tier 5 and Tier 6 armor pieces.
|Auchindoun||Terokkar Forest||Black Temple||Shadowmoon Valley|
|Caverns of Time||Tanaris||Coilfang Reservoir||Zangarmarsh|
|Gruul's Lair||Blade's Edge Mountains||Hellfire Citadel||Hellfire Peninsula|
|Isle of Quel'Danas||Quel'Thalas||Karazhan||Deadwind Pass|
With the expansion, two new sets of land based mounts were released to players specific to the new races. However, it was also added that other player races with an exalted reputation could acquire these mounts as well.
In addition to the new racial mounts, several dungeons have had mount drops added, such as Karazhan and Magisters' Terrace. The expansion also saw the release of flying mounts and increased riding skills to allow for their use.
|The Burning Crusade