The last recorded patch notes can be found here.
- Arena Season 8 ends due to the balance changes.
- Your auction house addons will need to be updated
- Flexible raid locks are live.
- Guilds are limited to 1,000 members.
- Guilds will, of course, have other changes that are important for officers to know
- Currency for gear has undergone significant conversion.
- Mana regeneration is notably different.
- You can now use the Return to Graveyard button.
- There are significant changes to the glyph system.
- Reforging has been added.
- The streaming launcher will be active.
What patch 4.0.1 is
Patch 4.0.1 is the pre-Cataclysm patch. It contains a metric ton of changes for all classes and specs. We'll get into the specifics later, but for now, here are the major implications:
- There's a complete overhaul to existing item stats and their values. Reforging will be implemented, helping to making the transition much smoother.
- There's a total overhaul to our talent trees. The current 51-point trees are gone; the new 31-point trees will be implemented, complete with new abilities. As part of this, you're required to choose a specialization at level 10. You will get 5 more talent points when Cataclysm launches and you are able to gain 5 more levels.
- Spell ranks are gone. You only have to learn a spell once, though it may be at a different level as before. Your spells will now automatically "level up" in damage along with you.
- Mastery has been implemented, although it is not part of the talent trees
You can read a general summary here.
- Death Knight
Think of patch 4.0.1 as a modification to your character, with the later, full Cataclysm release as a modification to the world around you. While this new patch includes a lot of changes we're currently seeing in the Cataclysm beta, it's important to note what will not happen with the new patch:
- The world will not be torn asunder -- you won't see any changes to existing zones or new quests.
- As a logical extension, you will not be able to access new zones like Vashj'ir and Mount Hyjal.
- You will not be able to surpass level 80.
- You will not be able to play as a goblin or worgen.
- You will not be able to fly in the "old world." You will be able to train 310 percent mount speed.
This is it! Patch 4.0.1 begins the slide into December's upcoming expansion. It's a whole new game from here on out. Get oriented with our roundup of everything there is to know about patch 4.0.1 and how it changes the game until the launch of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm.