Before the end of Legion comes one final WoW patch - 7.3.5, bringing with it Legion's epilogue, a few new features, and the long awaited expansion of level scaling to include the full 1-100 experience. There's also datamining pointing at some more concrete answers on how Allied Races will work, and all the usual tiny tweaks. Read below for more info.
For the futher future of World of Warcraft, have a read about Battle for Azeroth.
WoW Patch 7.3.5 release date
Blizzard have announced that the update will hit on January 16 - pretty much as we expected - and they’ve provided official patch notes as part of that announcement.
Notably, the official notes don’t make any mention of Allied Races, so it seems they will indeed not be a part of 7.3.5. The Seething Shore also won’t be available - at least not at first. Instead, the battleground “will become available as the story in Silithus unfolds.”
The new notes do confirm that you’ll need to complete Antorus in order to access the new quests available in Silithus.
More details on features including level scaling, Ulduar timewalking, and new content in Silithus can be found below.
WoW Patch 7.3.5 livestreams
There's always a few of these leading into a patch release. The first was in November, shortly after BlizzCon, with game director Ion Hazzikostas:
There will be at least one more before launch, and likely quite a few of these as we head towards Battle for Azeroth.
WoW Patch 7.3.5 level scaling
The largest component of 7.3.5 is the introduction of worldwide level scaling. This means going from 1-110 won't involve quests and mobs going grey until you choose to leave an area or you pass an expansion barrier. Here's the basics of how it will work:
- Starting zones from 1-10
- Vanilla zomes up to 60
- TBC and Wrath zones 60-80
- MOP and Cataclysm zones 80-90
- WOD, Legion and Battle For Azeroth for 10 levels each from there
These are broken down more specifically per zone, as you can see in this graph:
*using Google Sheets candlestick charts + some paint magic pic.twitter.com/pM17loZ4Oj
— Poneria / Megan O (@_poneria) December 1, 2017
Dungeons scale in a similar way, based on the zone they're located in. Full listings are available over on Wowhead. As noted there, this is also paired with a reworking of how zone achievements work into specific quest lines, similar to the system that premiered in Warlords of Draenor. Similarly, the war zone selection method that started in
WoW Patch 7.3.5 Silithus
The other major part of this patch is the new content available in Silithus. This looks to just be a single redesigned zone - it's got a big sword in it now, if you hadn't heard - with a couple of quest lines, but it's the epilogue to Legion and begins to explain why everyone ends up at each other's throats in Battle for Azeroth.
There's a questline for each faction, beginning in their capital cities. If you want to watch the full thing, here's the Alliance version, via Wowhead's YouTube channel:
Clearly, neither of these questlines are complete. Cinematics won't be added until it goes live, and they're both supposed to end with (spoilers) Khadgar deciding to leave us to our own devices rather than take up arms on either side. He's been the main character for a couple of expansions, so it's probably time for a new one.
As is the theme of World of Warcraft currently, there's also at least one major secret that hints at the plotline of Battle for Azeroth. As found by a member of the WoW subreddit a journal can drop from one of the new mobs in Silithus, which not so subtly hints at the rising of the Old Gods as part of the next expansion.
Datamining has also indicated that a follow up quest line will have us retire our Artifact Weapons at some point in the patch, with a cinematic called 7.3.5 Artifact Weapon Retirement having not yet been implemented. While this could happen at any point post-Argus lore-wise, gameplay wise this isn't something we can really handle until 8.0 as classes are entirely balanced around the power of their artifact weapons. Expect that to be quite a while after the launch of 7.3.5, but you can read a little more about it here.
Patch 7.3.5 Seething Shore battleground
As part of these rising tensions in Silithus, the new Seething Shore battleground will also be added in 7.3.5. It's a 10 vs 10 fight over the Azerite that's now leaking out of the planet and is the central theme of Battle for Azeroth. Gameplay wise it's a little like Arathi Basin, with control points to grab and earn points for, but with those control points disappearing and reappearing randomly around the map at intervals.
Here's a fairly long stream of the battleground being played (starts around 25 minutes):
Blizzard have described this as a "preview" in patch 7.3.5. Exactly what that means hasn't been explored, though it's assumed that the battleground will simply be live from when 7.3.5 is available, and playable through until 8.0 and beyond. It could be time limited, or only available towards the end of the patch.
WoW Patch 7.3.5 Legendaries
Well, it took many months, but we got there - you'll be able to earn legendaries on a linear basis with patch 7.3.5. For 175 Wakening Essences, the item obtained from almost everything in-game and used to upgrade legendary ilevels in the past, you can purchase a token that, when used, turns into a class and spec appropriate legendary. If you have all those, you get another legendary for your class or a BOA token for a different class, as with how normal legendary acquisition currently works. You can read about it here, including a note that it doesn't affect the normal legendary drop chance. Further revelations in a follow-up here.
WoW Patch 7.3.5 Ulduar timewalking
As revealed at BlizzCon, 7.3.5 is also expanding the raid timewalking program with Ulduar from Wrath of the Lich-King. This will work identically to Black Temple timewalking other than the level you're scaled to - 80 - and the raid itself.
There's been some testing so far. Popular streamer Towelliee went through the first few bosses at the end of this stream:
Note that this won't be available the moment 7.3.5 goes live, as it is only active during the Wrath of the Lich King Timewalking week. The next is scheduled for February 13. That probably also indicates that 7.3.5 will be available some time before or around that, unless Blizzard are okay delaying this part of the patch until May 22 - unlikely.
WoW Patch 7.3.5 backpack slots
Minor as it is, 7.3.5 also brings the ability to get four extra bag slots on your backpack. Those with an authenticator attached to their account - either physically or via their phone - will get this upgrade automatically. It's another push from Blizzard to increase the security of player accounts, and joins the Core Hound pet as a reward for adding an authenticator. We'd recommend it.
In similarly minor news, the S.E.L.F.I.E. cam is getting a couple of upgrades and a new questline in 7.3.5. Wowhead have all the details on that.
WoW Patch 7.3.5 Allied Races
One of the key components of Battle for Azeroth will be Allied Races, and a massive amount of content surrounding them is included in the files for 7.3.5. However, Blizzard have specifically stated that this is Battle for Azeroth content and won't be available during 7.3.5. Whether that's them masking the non-BFA-specific Allied Races coming to the game early or the simple truth, for now they're not a part of the patch. Wowhead's 7.3.5 patch tab has everything currently known about them, if you're curious.
That's everything we have for now. WoW patch 8.0 should hit the test servers in early 2018, though there may be more of a gap than normal between that and 7.3.5 going live, since it's a whole new expansion.