WoW Classic director says the next phase will launch "later this year"

WoW Classic
(Image credit: Blizzard)

World of Warcraft Classic has seen an impressive amount of players get stuck into the questing and raiding action the vanilla edition has to offer. But more is set to come to the world of, well, Warcraft in future. The good folks over at PCGamer recently interviewed Ion Hazzikostas, who revealed that players can expect a "second phase" introducing new raids and dungeons to Blizzard's MMORPG "later this year." 

"Within that time frame?" Hazzioktas told PCGamer, "It's going to depend on a few factors." While we don't know when exactly the new phase will be rolled out, it might not be too far off with Hazzikostas saying it will happen this year "definitively." 

Since the vanilla edition of WoW launched in August, the realms have seen a wealth of players join. In fact, it was so overcrowded to begin with, folks had to actually queue up to complete quests and faced lengthy wait times to even get onto a server. 

One of the biggest hurdles the Classic server has had to face is the layering problem. Essentially layers create different versions of the same zones to allow more players to join the realm and was used in order to try and meet the demands of the population. After some were exploiting this layering system in order to repeatedly farm loot, Blizzard implemented a player ban, but the studio are still working to stabilize the realms and remove the layers so there's only one in each realm to prevent any exploits happening again. 

It's especially important since the interview reveals the next phase will feature world bosses such as Kazzak, and as Hazzikostas explained, they want there to be only one of them players can face: "When Kazzak is up, we only want one Kazzak. That's kind of a central dynamic of how that needs to play out in the outdoor world." 

In WoW Classic's forums community manager Kaivax addressed the layering problem and revealed that Blizzard have already locked in 13 realms with one layer, and players will now be able to see when a realm there in has more than one layer with a message indicating that it's "layered." Blizzard plans reducing realms to a single layer "over time." 

Read about how World of Warcraft Classic already has one of the nicest communities in gaming or check out the video below to see the top 10 MMO games you can play right now. 

Heather Wald
Senior staff writer

I started out writing for the games section of a student-run website as an undergrad, and continued to write about games in my free time during retail and temp jobs for a number of years. Eventually, I earned an MA in magazine journalism at Cardiff University, and soon after got my first official role in the industry as a content editor for Stuff magazine. After writing about all things tech and games-related, I then did a brief stint as a freelancer before I landed my role as a staff writer here at GamesRadar+. Now I get to write features, previews, and reviews, and when I'm not doing that, you can usually find me lost in any one of the Dragon Age or Mass Effect games, tucking into another delightful indie, or drinking far too much tea for my own good.