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The Think Tank: Predicting the launch of Warlords of Draenor


We teased Blizzard on Monday for announcing an announcement date for the release date for World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor, but the truth is, even MMO players who don't play WoW are a little curious about when the expansion will release and how it might impact other MMOs we all play. That release date is what the Massively team is talking about today; we're issuing our predictions for launch date. Join us in the comments!

Anatoli Ingram, Columnist
@ceruleangrey: I choose November 12th! There is absolutely no rhyme or reason behind my choice. I haven't been following WoD, and I probably could have gotten an equally accurate prediction by blindfolding myself and throwing darts at a calendar. However, I do have a handful of friends who play WoW, and from what they've told me, I think the playerbase may begin physically devouring the game if the expansion doesn't come out this year.

Bree Royce, Editor-in-Chief
@nbrianna: $1, Bob! No, really. My colleagues are probably realistic that it will launch in November or December because there's no way Blizzard can afford the PR hit of waiting longer, but then I said that last spring too (that there was no way Blizzard could afford the PR of waiting past summer... 800,000 players agreed with me, apparently). But I'm going to go wild and say it'll be delayed until January as The Burning Crusade once was. I pick January 13th. I'm probably wrong and it'll just launch on time and unfinished (sigh), but if I'm right, I'll be right in such a satisfying way!

Eliot Lefebvre, Contributing Editor
@Eliot_Lefebvre: Here's my logic: It's not coming out in August or September. There would be no reason for the whole pomp-and-circumstance around the whole "today we're announcing the day we're announcing the launch date" if the darn thing were coming this soon, and awarding a beta key to someone who attended would feel like a weeksauce reward if the expansion were dropping in a month. So no to that.

Also, October is BlizzCon, so odds are good that they don't want to release then, either. Considering they'll have not much new on display anyway, if the expansion is launching, then players will want to stay home and play that. So odds are it won't be that month.

Based on what I've played and what I've seen of the game so far? I'm going with November 25th, as late as it can actually be in November before it's, well, December. Not that I'd be surprised if it did, in fact, turn out to be December.

Justin Olivetti, Contributing Editor
@Sypster: Blizzard needs to get Draenor out this year; slipping to 2015 would be massive smear on its face, even if the studio had the best of intentions. It's been far too long since the last update, and as recent subscriber numbers have shown, players' patience for new content is slipping, big-time.

I think that the best move all-around would be to target the December holiday season. That would allow WoD to be distant enough from Destiny and past major releases (barring, say, ArcheAge), would let Blizzard hype it up during BlizzCon some more, and it could be positioned to be THE holiday gift for MMO gamers (even one they get themselves). So put me down for December 15th.

Larry Everett, Columnist
@Shaddoe: I'm going to say that Blizzard will do something crazy. It's going to launch the day after BlizzCon, November 9th. I doubt that it will be before October because of the hype being built around things like BlizzCon. I don't think it's good timing to launch after Thanksgiving unless you're going to hold off until mid-December. By then, I think it'll be too late. So that leaves mid-November. I don't think raid content will launch with the expansion but the week after. That leaves one possible date for a normal launch day: November 12th, but Toli said that already. My next best guess would be the day right after BlizzCon. So that's what I'm sticking with. What's my prize again?

MJ Guthrie, Contributing Editor
@MJ_Guthrie: November 4th! For no reason in particular. Because everyone knows I don't follow WoW in any way shape or form, but I do know how to pick a random date! Eeny, meeny, miney, moe...

What do you get when you throw the Massively writers' opinions together in one big pot to stew? You get The Think Tank, a column dedicated to ruminating on the MMO genre. We range from hardcore PvPers to sandbox lovers to the most caring of the carebears, so expect more than a little disagreement! Join Editor-in-Chief Bree Royce and the team for a new edition right here every Thursday.

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