When is the Classic WoW release Date?
The Classic WoW release will be on August 27th, 2019. It will be released at the same time all around the world. More information about time zones can be found in the original news post from Blizzard here.
The testing schedule for Classic WoW
Before the classic wow release, there needs to be a Beta phase. The closed Beta started on the 15th of May, but they are keeping the invites to a minimum at the moment. In order to be eligible for an invite, you have to have an active subscription and set your beta profile accordingly in your account settings. There are 3 dates for focused stress testing:
- Stress Test 1: Wed May 22–Thurs May 23
- Stress Test 2: Wed Jun 19– Thurs Jun 20
- Stress Test 3: Thurs Jul 18– Fri July 19
Secure your character name
Blizzard will open character creations to anyone with an active subscription on the 13th of August, 2 weeks before the official release. It will be possible to create up to 3 characters per realm. They also announced that the realms will be announced prior to the release.
Layering in Classic WoW
For the first Phase of the content plan, Blizzard is planning to make use of a new system to reduce the load on the realms. They call this technology Layering. For a detailed explanation on how layering works, this article on Wowhead explains it pretty well.
But in short: Instead of creating multiple instances of every zone and pooling players from multiple realms, like sharding does in retail WoW, layering creates an instance of the whole world once a certain population is reached. Players will not phase in and out of their layer unless they group with someone from a different layer. In addition to this, there will be no cross-realm functionality involved in this at all. Blizzard also said that layering will be used at most until the first content release.