World of Warcraft's next expansion revealed: Shadowlands

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World of Warcraft's (opens in new tab) next expansion, Shadowlands, has been announced. The months of rumors and leaks turned out to be accurate, as Shadowlands will wrap up the faction war of Battle for Azeroth as both sides unite to fight a far bigger threat: The Old Gods and their evil masters, The Void Lords.

Revealed during the opening ceremony of BlizzCon 2019 (opens in new tab), the cinematic trailer opens with Sylvanas returning to Icecrown Citadel, where the current Lich King Bolvar resides. Sylvanas and Bolvar battle one another, before Sylvanas takes his crown and claims it for herself. Using the Lich King's crown, Sylvanas tears open reality, revealing what appears to be the Shadowlands, an alternate dimension of death and decay. Players will be familiar with this realm because it's where you're sent to when you die.

One of the key features of Shadowlands will be choosing a Covenant, aligning with one of the different factions that call it home like the Valkyr. Of course, Shadowlands will also include several new zones, which we'll have more on shortly. "Shadowlands is an expansion built around choice," Hazzikostas said.

At the end of the gameplay trailer, it also looks like we got our first-ever look at a Void Lord, the legendary monsters who represent the greatest threat to Azeroth (and the puppetmasters of the Old Gods).

World of Warcraft has an entire panel dedicated to its new expansion later this afternoon at 3:30pm PT. We'll have more info for you then.

(Image credit: Blizzard)

(Image credit: Blizzard)

(Image credit: Blizzard)

With over 7 years of experience with in-depth feature reporting, Steven's mission is to chronicle the fascinating ways that games intersect our lives. Whether it's colossal in-game wars in an MMO, or long-haul truckers who turn to games to protect them from the loneliness of the open road, Steven tries to unearth PC gaming's greatest untold stories. His love of PC gaming started extremely early. Without money to spend, he spent an entire day watching the progress bar on a 25mb download of the Heroes of Might and Magic 2 demo that he then played for at least a hundred hours. It was a good demo.