Blizzard dropped a tweet and a blue post with information about patch 10.1 and every planned World of Warcraft patch in 2023: all six patches. In what I'm sure is Wow's first-ever public expansion road map. I'll let WoW's executive producer Holly Longdale explain the thinking behind this unprecedented move: "A WoW expansion is not a single moment in time but a journey - we know that the merit of an expansion hinges on the sustained quality of its entire arc. Years after its release, Legion is remembered fondly as much for the 11-week content update cadence that served as the framework for its first year as it is for artifact weapons or Khadgar's brilliant dad jokes. Frankly, we need to do better than we have at times in the recent past. Our goal for Dragonflight is that there should always be something around the corner, with a new update hitting our test realms shortly after the last one is live and in your hands." Of course, Holly isn't the first person on the team to express this sentiment. Ion Hazzikostas said pretty much exactly the same in a couple of interviews in the wake of Dragonflight's initial announcement, but Ion didn't have the entirely laid out detailed graphic to show us.
If you're new to this game, we, as WoW players, have never seen anything like this. Here are the promises:
Patch 10.0.5: Winter 2023
In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if those world quests and dailies are straight-up reruns of the story quests that we did in that area, too, the first time around. But new world content is neat.
Patch 10.0.7: Spring 2023
Return to Forbidden Reach
Holly says these story quests will directly lead into the beat of the 10.1 patch. I wouldn't be surprised if there's an awesome cinematic or two associated with it, and it's incredibly satisfying to read: "...and by its conclusion, it should be obvious what our next destination must be." Concluding an arc or beat with each story installment is very important, but in WoW, it's equally important to include a clear marker of what is coming next. It's really cool this sentiment that Holly clearly stresses several times in this post that the team appreciates now too.
Human & Orc Heritage Armor
Patch 10.1Then 10.1 is our next big content patch. It does contain what you'd expect. Season two, new mythic plus dungeon pool, a new raid, a new zone, UI improvements, and profession updates. So it's nice to see they're doing better on the UI updates. As a side note, the 10.0.5 PTR data mining suggests we'll get editable XP bars, bags, and a micro menu. As for the professional updates look, it's hard to know what that means because that could be just another rank of crafts. It could be an update to secondary professions or even an Archeology. We just don't know yet.
Patch 10.1.5: Summer 2023The second half of the year then looks much the same. We have 10.1.5 dropping in the summer with a Megadungeon, new world events, and content and system updates. In interviews, Blizzard has alluded to revamped archeology and a new Mage Tower-like feature in this expansion. As we go through this roadmap, there are obviously loads of opportunities in spaces for content like that to be slotted in.
Patch 10.1.7: Fall 2023Patch 10.1.7 looks similar enough to drop in the autumn with story and quest updates and another holiday refresh. So I would pause it lightly for Hallows and through to at least Winter's Veil so that those feel up to date. Then, of course, more content and system updates.
Patch 10.2: Winter 2023 - 2024Finally, patch 10.2 heading into the winter with season 3, a new zone, a new raid, a new mythic plus dungeon pool, and additional content and features. A new mythic plus dungeon pool is kind of interesting because the whole split between four new dungeons and four old dungeons for season one and two have been to keep Dragonflight seasons feeling new with an entirely new dungeon pool but by the time 10.2 comes out, all eight original Dragonflight dungeons will have been used. Of course, the Megadungeon will be split into two for mythic plus. Will the Megadungeon be so big it'll actually have room for four dungeons for mythic plus content? I appreciate their commitment to us not having to play the same eight dungeons for two years straight.
Road Map on the CalendarLet's put it on the calendar. The big picture is in 2023, we'll have six content patches. Divide a year into six, and you get a patch on average every 60.8 days, and that cadence is faster than Legion's every 77 days. It's every 10 weeks versus every 11 weeks. That is a lot stronger than recent expansions too. Data mining suggests 10.0.5 will land before January 20th because it has some Lunar Festival stuff. Now, if that's the case, then:
- 10.0.7 would be March 28th;
- 10.1 will be June 13th;
- 10.1.5 August 22nd;
- 10.1.7 November 31st.
- 10.2 January 2024
Dragonflight vs. Shadowlands Patch Releases