Blizzard announced today that World of Warcraft: Shadowlands won't make its October 27 release date. The developer still plans to release the expansion sometime before the end of 2020, but doesn't have a new release date to announce yet.
According to a statement from WoW executive producer John Hight, the delay will allow time for "additional polish," balancing, and work on the endgame, which he says has been a challenge in part because Shadowlands is "one of the most intricate expansions" in WoW history, and in part because the developers have had to work from home as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
pic.twitter.com/FCkGYxax60October 1, 2020
Hight also announced that the Shadowlands pre-patch, which will set the stage for the expansion's release, will be pushed out to players on October 13. That patch will include "revamped character leveling," the new Exile's Reach starting zone (opens in new tab), and "a host of new character customization options."
There'll also be a pre-launch defense against the undead Scourge, but that won't happen until we're closer to the new Shadowlands release date, whatever it ends up being.