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New World of Warcraft expansion confirmed: Cataclysm

2:43 PM on 08.21.2009 // Jim Sterling

Blizzard Entertainment has just confirmed a brand new expansion pack for World of Warcraft. Following up Wrath of the Lick King will be Cataclysm, revealed at Blizzcon today. The new expansion will put players against the corrupted Dragon Aspect Deathwing, who threatens to destroy all of Azeroth. Those damn corrupted Dragon Aspects!

Cataclysm will include two new playable races, Worgen for the Alliance and Goblins for the Horde. The level cap has increased once more, this time to 85, and old areas of the game have been recreated thanks to Deathwing's awakening. Plenty more additions are included, such as new race and class combinations, a new secondary profession and flying mounts. 

Hit the jump for the full details. 

ANAHEIM, Calif., Aug 21, 2009 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. today announced plans for the third expansion to World of Warcraft(R), its award-winning massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG). Unveiled at the company's fourth BlizzCon(R) gaming festival, World of Warcraft: Cataclysm(TM) will bring sweeping changes to the world of Azeroth. Players will be able to adventure as two new playable races, achieve new levels of power, take on challenging quests and dungeons in all-new zones, and experience dramatic changes to familiar aspects of the game in the wake of a world-shattering disaster.

"In addition to revitalizing some of the most familiar and iconic areas of the game world, this third World of Warcraft expansion will add new features and a large amount of new content for players to explore," said Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard Entertainment. "We're excited to be offering a first glimpse of Cataclysm for attendees of BlizzCon, and we look forward to sharing more information with everyone as development progresses."

In Cataclysm, players will witness the face of Azeroth being altered forever, as the corrupted Dragon Aspect Deathwing awakens from his subterranean slumber and erupts onto the surface, leaving ruin and destruction in his wake. As the Horde and Alliance race to the epicenter of the cataclysm, the kingdoms of Azeroth will witness seismic shifts in power, the kindling of a war of the elements, and the emergence of unlikely heroes who will rise up to protect their scarred and broken world from utter devastation.

Building on the foundation established in World of Warcraft and its first two expansions, Cataclysm will add a variety of new content and offer players the opportunity to rediscover Azeroth and experience the game from a whole new perspective. New features coming with the game's third expansioninclude:

  • Two New Playable Races: Adventure as the cursed worgen with the Alliance or the resourceful goblins with the Horde.
  • Increased Level Cap: Advance to level 85 and earn new abilities, tap into new talents, and progress through the path system, a new way for players to customize characters.
  • Classic Zones Remade: Quest to level 60 as you never have before. Familiar zones across the original continents of Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms have been reforged by the cataclysm and updated with new quests and content.
  • Flying Mounts in Azeroth: Explore Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms from a whole new perspective.
  • Guild Advancement: Progress as a guild to earn guild levels and guild achievements.
  • New High-Level Content: Explore newly opened parts of the world, including Uldum, Grim Batol, and the great sunken city of Vashj'ir beneath the sea, and enjoy even more high-level raid content than in previous expansions.
  • New PvP Zone & Rated Battlegrounds: Take on PvP objectives and daily quests on Tol Barad Island, a new Wintergrasp-like zone, and wage war in all-new rated Battlegrounds.
  • Archaeology: Master a new secondary profession to unearth valuable artifacts and earn unique rewards.
  • New Race and Class Combinations: Explore Azeroth as a gnome priest, blood elf warrior, or one of the other never-before-available race and class combinations.

Since launching in November 2004, World of Warcraft has become the world's most popular MMORPG. The game's second expansion, Wrath of the Lich King(TM), sold more than 2.8 million copies within its first 24 hours of availability and more than 4 million copies in its first month, setting both records for PC game sales. World of Warcraft is available in eight different languages and is played in North America, Europe, Chile, Argentina, Russia, mainland China, Korea, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, and the regions of Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macau.

For more information on World of Warcraft: Cataclysm, visit Blizzard Entertainment's official website at To keep pace with the continued growth of World of Warcraft as well as development on other Blizzard games, the company is currently hiring for numerous open positions -- more information on available career opportunities at Blizzard can be found at

Jim Sterling, Former Reviews Editor
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