This page will be your guide as you return to the World of Warcraft. Learn all about the new content we’ve added to the game, the vast number of updates and improvements we’ve made to familiar gameplay since you last played, and much, much more.
Let’s get started.
Reactivating Your Account
If you haven’t visited Azeroth since November 11, 2009, you need to convert your account to a Battle.net account. You can add any Blizzard game you own, easily manage them, and even download them again from within Account Management.
While you’re there, we recommend you also attach a free Battle.net Authenticator to your account for added safety and peace of mind if you haven’t done so already. If you lost a previously attached Authenticator, don’t panic! You can detach an Authenticator and get back in the action by visiting the Authenticator Removal page page.
For more account security information, visit the Account Support site.
Downloading the Game
Once you’ve gotten your account set up, you can download the updated game client directly from Battle.net. And thanks to our new streaming downloader you can start playing within minutes, even before the game is fully installed!
The launcher will continue to download the game whether you wait in the launcher or start playing the game once the status changes to Available.
If you have issues during this process, you can read about how to resolve them on the support site.
Major Game Changes
Curious to learn what’s changed since you left? Read on to find out about some of the most fundamental changes to the game.
Play As Any Race
As of the release of World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria, all players can play as any of the game’s thirteen races, including the new Pandaren, who can choose to join the Horde or Alliance. Check out our races overview page to learn more!
New Talent System
The talent system (keyboard shortcut: “N”) has been completely redesigned to make talents more fun and meaningful. Check out our talent calculators to see how it all works. In-game, you can also change individual talents “on the fly” by purchasing special items from a scribe or Inscription vendor.
Spells no longer need to be learned by visiting your class trainer, though you’ll still need to see your class trainer should you want to change your Talent Specialization.
Glyphs provide cosmetic effects or specific benefits to your spells and abilities. Three Major and Minor Glyphs are available at level 90. Glyphs are created with the Inscription profession and can be bought and sold via the Auction House. Much like talents, Glyphs can be swapped in and ot using special items bought from a scribe or Inscription vendor. Check out our talent calculators to see what glyphs are available for each class.
Let’s explore some of the improvements to familiar gameplay elements and how they will help you experience Azeroth like never before.
Players who enjoy Player vs. Player (keyboard shortcut: “H”) combat are able to earn experience by engaging in Battlegrounds. You can earn experience by completing objectives, killing opponents, and winning the Battleground. By running random Battlegrounds or the “Call to Arms,” you can also earn additional Honor Points or (with a win) Conquest points. Maximum level players are able to form Arena groups or compete in Rated Battlegrounds to earn additional Conquest Points.
Mists of Pandaria also introduced some new opportunities for world PvP (on PvP realms) with the addition of several new roaming world bosses. Grab you sword and fight the Horde!
Social Gaming Improvements
Press “O” or click the Real ID icon above your chat window to bring up your friends list. See if any of your friends are online and send them a message to let them know you’re back! You can now use email addresses, character names, and BattleTag to add new friends to your friends list!
The quest log (keyboard shortcut: “L”) will allow you to track as many as 25 total quests at a time, including daily quests that you can do once every day. As of the release of Mists of Pandaria, there are no longer any limitations on the number of daily quests you can do in one day. Within every capital city you can also find either the Warchief’s Command Board (Horde) or a Hero’s Call Board (Alliance) with additional quests. When in doubt on where you should go next, this is a great place to look for quests.
Joining a guild now comes with a number of benefits beyond just having a cool group of people to play with. Guilds can earn experience and gain Guild Perks that provide guild members with buffs such as faster experience gain, travel speed increases, bonus gold, and many more. You can even buy heirloom items that will make leveling your character much, much easier.
The Dungeon Finder (keyboard shortcut: “I”) is an easy way to run Dungeons at any level. It will match you with other players and transport you directly into the Dungeon. You can even queue with a group of friends and fill out the group as needed. You’ll eventually gain access to the Raid Finder and Scenarios as well.
Check out the Dungeon Journal (Shift+J), which lets you take a look at bosses and their abilities from within the game, though it won’t provide you with specific strategies.
Latest Gameplay Updates
Now it’s time to delve into some of the brand-new, never before seen gameplay you’ll be able to experience in World of Warcraft!
Previously content to sit by your side and look cute, the companions you’ve collected can now compete in the new Pet Battle system, which was introduced in Mists of Pandaria. You can level your pets up to engage in combat with other players’ pets, and you can even sell your pets to others. You won’t be able to level your own character within this system, however.
Cross Realm Zones
As you travel through Azeroth, you may come across people who hail from different realms. Cross-Realm Zones were introduced in Mists of Pandaria.
Read more about Cross-Realm Zones in the original FAQ.
Account-Bound Items and Mounts
Your mounts and pets are now shared among all of your characters attached to any individual Battle.net Account with only select restrictions for PvP mounts or faction-specific mounts. You’ll be able to see all of your available pets and mounts by clicking on the pets and mounts icon or by pressing (Shift+P) to bring up the panel.
The Achievements (keyboard shortcut: “Y”) system has also been updated. In many cases, some are now Battle.net account-wide. Shared achievements show up with a blue header within the Achievement interface.
You’re now able to customize the look of your character through Transmogrification. By visiting an NPC, you can pay a small fee to exchange the appearance of your armor and weapons to look like those of another while still retaining the worn item’s stats.
View Other Game Updates!
Useful Keyboard Shortcuts
|Talents||N (unlocked at level 10)|
|Achievements||Y (unlocked at level 10)|
|Dungeon Finder||I (unlocked at level 15)|
|PvP||H (unlocked at level 10)|
Common Dungeon and Raid Abbreviations
|TJS||Temple of the Jade Serpent|
|SNT||Siege of Niuzao Temple|
|GSS||Gate of the Setting Sun|
|HoF||Heart of Fear|
|TES||Terrace of Endless Spring|
|TT||Throne of Thunder|
The Story So Far
Check out the interactive Warcraft Timeline to catch up on everything that’s happened in World of Warcraft while you were gone.