World of Warcraft Classic‘s Season of Discovery update is nearly here. While Season of Discovery wasn’t the biggest thing announced at BlizzCon 2023, the update has rightfully caught the attention of WoW fans old and new. Of course, that’s also because there is so little we actually know about the update ahead of its release. At least we now know what time the update will be released.
World of Warcraft: Season of Discovery is set to launch on November 30 at 1:00 p.m. PST, 3:00 p.m. CT, 4 p.m. EST, and 9:00 pm GMT. As you can see, Season of Discovery will follow a global release time schedule. That means that everyone will be able to access it at the same time relative to their time zones. There is no way to play the game earlier than that, so don’t even think about it.
Of course, since this is an update to an MMORPG, it is worth noting that the planned release time will likely be preceded by a period of server downtime. In this instance, the WoW Classic servers are expected to be down for three hours before Season of Discovery‘s launch. While that information has not been confirmed by Blizzard as of the time of this writing, that estimate is in line with the downtime associated with previous WoW updates.
Furthermore, history tells us that the early hours of the Season of Discovery update will be plagued by server congestion. You should expect to encounter a login queue shortly after the update launches and for some time thereafter. How long that queue will be and how long it will last will depend on a few factors. The popularity of the update is obviously one of them, but we also don’t know how many Season of Discovery servers will be available at launch. Given that you are not able to reserve your Season of Discovery name (or perform similar pre-launch functions) ahead of the update’s launch, it’s possible that this initial launch will be treated like a soft rollout. However, we should know more about all of that once the update is actually released.
For a complete rundown of Season of Discovery‘s planned launch times, please check out this official post on the subject.
For those who don’t know, Season of Discovery is essentially a reimagining of the WoW Classic experience. While it will largely rely on the major pieces of content featured in Classic, it will introduce entirely new elements like new powers, new class roles, new gear, and more. Most importantly, Season of Discovery will launch with a new Level Cap (Level 25). While that is lower than the base game’s cap of Level 60, Blizzard plans to release interval updates that will raise Season of Discovery‘s level cap and introduce new content. At launch, though, the main piece of endgame content will be a 10-player Raid set in a reimagined version of Blackfathom Deeps.
Of course, this being the Season of Discovery, the WoW team is intentionally withholding quite a few details. The idea is that longtime WoW players will be able to discover new things about one of their favorite games. As for whether or not Season of Discovery will be substantial enough to serve as the “Classic+” experience those fans have been asking for…well, that’s another thing we’ll have to wait and see.