WoW Shadowlands First Impressions

Nov 24 2020 5 min read

After some hours inside World of Warcraft: Shadowlands, here are our first impressions.

The agonizing wait has finally come to an end, and millions of World of Warcraft fans around the world have gotten what they've been waiting for. Less than a day ago, the new Shadowlands expansion was released, sending us to save the universe in a new way. This time, to the... underworld, so to speak. We spent several hours in a fresh World of Warcraft expansion and are in a hurry to share our impressions, emotions, and, of course, questions that arose during the game.

Let's start with the good ones right away: the delayed start (not Cyberpunk2077, of course, but still felt a little unpleasant) had a positive effect on the launch. It is still unclear whether Activision Blizzard really decided to postpone the start due to a lack of resources or simply because they realized their mistakes during the beta and ran to fix them. However, within a month, they did a very important thing that everyone asked for: abandoning the forced division into covenants.

Is the Jailer actually the main villain?

Even in the release video with Zovall, the Jailer, something was wrong. He looks like a first-line raid boss, nothing more. Of course, Sylvanas is still a tricky fox; she deliberately kneels in front of the Jailer in order to get something more from him. However, the feeling that something is wrong does not disappear. Hopefully, Blizzard has hidden something deeper.

Echoes of the Past

Is this really a new addon? Looks like Legion and Draenor at the same time. In general, this is quite logical because the Legion fans consider it the best of the latest expansions, and Draenor was its forerunner. Again, the heroes got into trouble, again some kind of an imbalanced new race tries to help, again we are saving Azeroth without being on it. This time, instead of Azerite, we have Anima, a resource that supports the forces of a new reality.

Self-copying is one of the diseases that plague Blizzard. The feeling that I have already seen almost everything somewhere does not disappear. Oribos resembles both that Argus holy Draenei ship and Ironforge, doesn't it?

An adventure in a new (which is actually well-forgotten old) format is great, but the idea of ​​BfA looked fresh: we were allowed into Zandalar and Coultiras, two locations placed in Azeroth. It's cool to feel like a part of the world that has taken root inside the heart. But going once again to a completely new (?) reality/world/planet/universe is boring and repulsive.

Removed Azerite artifacts are just replaced with covenant ones

Yes, we will be able to try all three new 'factions' one after the other, but in the end, we will have to choose one to which we will lean. As a prize for completing the covenants and the main storyline, the heroes of Azeroth will receive several artifacts, depending on their own specialization and the chosen covenant. So, we get a neural number of combinations, and the question is: how to balance all this? The developers promised a two percent drawdown between the strongest build and the weakest, but this is a double-edged sword: it turns out that it makes no difference who to play for, or Blizzard is a little cunning.

But it's better that way than staying permanently attached to the covenant without the ability to change specialization on the go.

Blizzard hasn't learned anything new since Ny'Alotha

Once again, we're for the old. The main characters (that is me, you, we, us) are the saviors of the universe, at the same time loners and at the same time, the entire server of players. Now I will seem like a whining old man, but classic WoW and the first expansions forced players to look for partners, battle instances, and raids together, become teams. Remember how the Lich King shouted at death? "Tyrion, you raised good heroes." Yes, the feeling of gigantic power in a player's hands must be present in an MMORPG, but just if you think about it: the server has everyone with such power in their hands, every single one is the chosen one, the champion, the hero of Azeroth. And before, they were just a good army of ordinary soldiers.

Here we have another expansion with Thrall, Jaina, Anduin, Bane following us almost everywhere and helping us out... Their morale-boosting auras should work, but we deal with them so often that sometimes we forget that they are the great heroes, the planet's old-timers. Is that okay?

And Finally, Something Pleasant

After the outrage of players during the beta, Blizzard decided not to divide subscribers into covenants but to do everything consistently. This was discussed above, but here it is worth paying attention to the fact that the developers listened and implemented a clever solution. Bravo.

Reducing levels helps to adequately observe what is happening. When HP and damage were calculated in hundreds of thousands, the feeling of incredible power was present, but also harmed the perception.

The locations are very beautiful; at the micro-level, everything is brilliantly worked out. The only problem is that there is so much of it that it is not remembered.

Bolvar looks like the one who will eventually kill Sylvanas. Simply stunning.

Bolvar Fordragon


Blizzard took some good things out of all the expansions but couldn't pull it off in Addonus Maxima. We have an epic based on the best ever WoW expansion (WotLK), but the introductory quests and subsequent tasks are reminiscent of the classic grind quests, whose characters you don't even remember. Everything is very beautifully executed, no doubt about it. The legacy Shadowlands uses to lure us over to their side should be played very carefully. The developers have a very serious weapon in their hands, and it remains to hope that we will have the best possible patch since WotLK. So far, there are only prerequisites for this.

The question is whether Blizzard will be able to soak up the annoying insane epic a little bit with any drama with the upcoming content patches, because from the point of view of gameplay, WoW is still one of the best MMORPGs on the planet.

And at the very end, the main advice: turn on War Mode because you will get more experience with it. There are complaints about the imbalance: if the War Mode is enabled, everything is too easy to go through, and even sometimes the quests become 'gray' when moving to the next covenant, and on the other side of the barricades, people complain that there is that lack of quests and EXP if War Mode is disabled. Nevertheless, there are very few aggressive players of the opposing faction so far because everyone only cares about farming and content absorption. So be kinder, but play with War Mode on — everyone wins!


World Esports Stands for Charity and Peace in Ukraine

Donate to Techiia Foundation to support charity and people of Ukraine for those who suffer the most, for those who protect the country from the Russian army forces right now and for those who will never return from this war but remain in our hearts forever.

qr code
The Esports Awards 2020 Winners and Participants
VALORANT Power Rankings for November: North America


WePlay Logo
Halloween Events in Esports Titles
Complexity Gaming partners with World of Warcraft guild Limit
Complexity Gaming partners with World of Warcraft guild Limit
The best RPGs of all time on PC
The best RPGs of all time on PC
WoW Classic lost Shroud at least 2,000 Twitch subscribers
WoW Classic lost Shroud at least 2,000 Twitch subscribers
Stormwind City recreated using Unreal Engine 4
Stormwind City recreated using Unreal Engine 4

Other Categories

WePlay Promotes

Stand with Ukraine


Ukrainian Army NBU Fundraising


Come Back Alive Foundation