Good news World of Warcraft fans, some new high-level content coming to the realms of Classic. The ancient Night Elf city that was eventually destroyed in the Great Sundering returns, with the rebirth of the haunting and desolate halls of Dire Maul. And for context this is the original version of the level 56+ Dungeon from the early days of the MMORPG. It was originally planned to be rolled into a later release, but Blizzard now appears to have moved that plan forward a bit.
The original plan appeeared to be that the endgame dungeon would drop along with world bosses and the honor system for PvP combat. Now the dungeon module has been spun off of that release and will be pushed out separately. game director Ion Hazzikostas announced the change saying, “I’m happy to announce that we’re going to break Dire Maul out separately and get it out there as soon as possible,” and he went on to elaborate that the Visions of N’Zoth update would be finally launched.
Dire Maul dungeon will release next week on October 15th.
Blizzard first added it to World of Warcraft in March 2005, as one of the first major additions to the game for endgame content, as it was introduced just four months after the MMO launched. The resulting Dire Maul raid become one of the top tier of challenges for player groups for the next few years, but it slowly waned in popularity as time wore on and more content was added.
The reintroduction of this content will be the first time since 2010 that Dire Maul has been a main part of the game though, as it was heavily nerfed in the Cataclysm expansion due to the sweeping changes that expansion made to the game world in WoW. Players could still get access to the original content through emulated servers, but the official support for that version of the raid was gone, until now.
The other plans Blizzard has for the future of the Classic port of vanilla WoW are still somewhat vague. The company plans to bring other updates and new content to the Classic version as part of the rollout of “Phase 2”, but they’re being pretty secretive right now. Blizzard will “share more detailed information on exactly when to expect that as soon as we have it.” Blizzard has been pretty good about pushing out updates and news about the Classic port, including some very tongue-in-cheek announcements. So we can expect more news about future plans pretty soon.