For quite some time, fans of World of Warcraft have been eagerly waiting for some news regarding their favorite MMORPG game. With the final Battle for Azeroth content update 8.3 Visions of N’Zoth just around the corner, many of us were expecting a new game expansion reveal at this year’s BlizzCon. Rumors turned out to be true as Blizzard revealed that the next chapter coming to the Warcraft universe will be called World of Warcraft: Shadowlands.

Have you ever wondered what the famous quote “There must always be a Lich King” meant? Well, apparently, it meant that Lich King prevented the sky from breaking up and opening a massive gateway to another dimension where souls are going after their death. Sylvanas destroyed the Helm of Domination and opened a way to the Shadowlands, setting up the stage for the new World of Warcraft expansion. According to the news, Shadowlands not only brings tons of new content but also tackles some of the game’s issues from the past.

Let’s talk about the new content first. As always, with the new expansion players are getting new places to explore. However, this time it’s not yet another forgotten island on Azeroth’s map, the new locations are going to be more alien than anything we’ve seen so far. Don’t be surprised – it’s a land of the dead after all. According to Blizzard, there will be 4 new leveling zones – Bastion, Maldraxxus, Andenweald, and Revendreth, along with a new end game zone called The Maw.

Each of the new zones will have a prominent theme going on, starting with a Covenant that will invite players to join. After you complete the initial storyline, you’ll be able to enlist into the Covenant of your choosing and get two new active abilities – one will be class and spec-specific while the other will serve as some sort of racial of your new Covenant. Blizzard says, that the Covenants will be a blend of Legion’s Suramar and Warlords of Draenor’s Garrisons where you’ll work towards building your reputation and base in order to unlock new story quests, rewards and so on. According to the developers, building your Covenant will serve as a substitute to a tiresome Artifact Power grind.

There are also new dungeons, a new raid, fresh solo/group PvE experience and much more. Here are the rest of the new Shadowlands features:

However, we should mention that the new content is only one of the reasons to get excited about the World of Warcraft: Shadowlands. With the new expansion, Blizzard is making some really interesting changes to enhance the new player experience. If you were following the news regarding World of Warcraft lately, you might remember that Blizzard was planning to squish character levels. These plans will become a reality in Shadowlands expansion which will see players level from 50 to 60 over the course of the expansion.

According to Blizzard, the team is working on fixing the outdated content and trying to make it relevant again. In Shadowlands, newly created characters will get their introduction to the game in a new-player zone and will be able to select how they want to level their character from 1 to 50. Blizzard has plans to scale down each expansion content so new players can experience it in its entirety. For example, you’ll be able to play through Legion’s zones and storylines on your journey from 1 to 50 without a necessity to hop through multiple zones from multiple expansions. Sounds nice, doesn’t it?

In addition to the new leveling experience, Blizzard also has plans to tone down some of the RNG with the reward system rework, make in-game classes feel more unique, give more options for character customization, and so on… If all goes according to plan, World of Warcraft: Shadowlands might become a major shift in World of Warcraft’s game direction. And we couldn’t possibly be more excited about it!