WoW! Thoughts! — On Coping with the Lull Between Expansions

Thoughts on how the lack of new content doesn't mean you have to stop enjoying Warcraft.


We’ve hit that time at the end of an expansion where there’s no new content for the forseeable future.  The lengthiest delay between patches during Mists was the 112 days between patch 5.3 and 5.4, and we’ve exceeded 120 days since the release of 5.4.  By now, most everyone’s goals on the Timeless Isle should be met.  This is the time that, if you’ve leveled all your alts and achieved your goals for Mists of Pandaria, you can safely let your subscription lapse until we approach the launch of Warlords. It’s a sad time for an MMO.  Even my own WoW playing has been reduced to farming leather and seeing what Nomi has to offer each day.  Its only January, and without any beta announcement, Warlords of Draenor feels a long way off. Still, there’s plenty to do for the Warcraft fan looking to try something new.

Mists of Pandaria was unique in that it expanded the amount of content available at max level, and while I doubt every activity will be enticing to every player, now might be the time to try out some previously-ignored features.  It was in the waning days of Cataclysm I decided to grind out my fishing, and as someone who hasn’t touched pet battles since beta, now might be a good time to get into that.  If you’ve been too busy raiding, you may want to look into Challenge Mode dungeons, Brawler’s Guild, or do some catching up on the legendary quest.  For PvE focused players, PvP gear should be so plentiful now that it might be a good time to jump into arena.   World of Warcraft offers plenty of content, and while none of it is new, if you haven’t tried it before, it’s new to you.

Even so, Blizzard cautioned us against this.  Blizzard removed the daily quest cap in Mists with the (sometime faulty) expectation that we wouldn’t rush through the new content and burn ourselves out.  I personally have stalled on the legendary questline and raiding Siege of Orgrimmar because I know there’s plenty of time for me to catch up.  Wrathion and Garrosh aren’t going anywhere for the next few months, so there’s no hurry for me to chase them down.  I can wait until I feel the launch of Warlords impending to start to worry about not completing my goals.  For now, World of Warcraft is just as timeless as the Isle most recently discovered.

Despite having activities in the game to do, this is just as good a time to engage with Warcraft outside of the game.  Not counting Hearthstone, which is still developing and still addictive, Warcraft can still be a time-consuming activity.  There are websites to spend time reading in anticipation of Warlords, and there’s also plenty of Warcraft literature to catch up on.  Since Jaina Proudmoore: Tides of War unofficially kicked off Mists of Pandaria, Blizzard has released two additional books (Vol’jin: Shadows of the Horde and Dawn of the Aspects) as well as three graphic novels (Bloodsworn, Dark Riders, and Pearl of Pandaria). Of course there’s also the ever-expanding lore section of the official website, which keeps adding official short stories.  For those who missed the fate of Sunwalker Dezco’s children, or would like to learn more about the history of the Mantid Paragons we revive and then slay, those tales can be found there.

Furthermore, Pandora recently announced that World of Warcraft soundtracks will be available.  If you don’t own any of them, this can be a great way to stay connected to the game even when not signed in.  Listening to the Heart of Pandaria or Why We Fight will make even the most mundane of actions feel epic.

The next few months will be tough for Blizzard and Warcraft fans.  Blizzard rushed through Mists of Pandaria at a breakneck speed, and now we have a gaping chasm of time before Warlords is released.  Content like the Diablo expansion and the official Hearthstone release may offset that boredom, but just because there’s nothing to do in game doesn’t mean you have to leave the Warcraft universe.  Regardless, Warlords’ launch date will arrive eventually, and it will be awesome when it does.

WoW! Blurbs!

The Iron Skyreaver is now available, possibly as the result of a glitch.  Regardless, its worth it for a twin-engine barrel-rolling chimera!

Blizzard game the forums a minor facelift.  But I still have to wait for my character’s facelift till Warlords?  Unfair!!!

Level 90-upgrades are coming Pre-Warlords, and there will be an option for upgrading other characters as well.  Now we can boost to 90 and immediately jump into Seiging Orgrimmar without ever touching that filthy Panda-filled continent!  Hooray!

Blizzard announced Callback support for their customer service!  Good luck if your smartphone with your mobile authenticator gets lost!

The results of the Razer WoW player survey are out!  Now I can say I’m in the top 10.5 % at something!

Nick Zielenkievicz
Nick Zielenkievicz
Nick Zielenkievicz

Senior Producer

Host of WoW! Talk! and The Tauren & The Goblin. Sometimes known as the Video Games Public Defender. Wants to play more Destiny and Marvel Heroes but WoW is all-consuming. Decent F2P Hearthstone player. Sad that he lost the Wii that had Wrecking Crew on it. Would be happy if the only game ever made was M.U.L.E. Gragtharr on Skywall-US. Garresque on Ravencrest-US.

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