Blizzard Entertainment is kicking off the alpha testing of World of Warcraft: Shadowlands this week. The first wave of invitations will be sent out in the next few days. However, the field of participants is initially very small, and only a part of the new content is available for testing.
On its way to release, the MMO expansion World of Warcraft: Shadowlands is about to take a big step. As Blizzard Entertainment has announced on the official website, the starting signal for the alpha test will be given in the course of this week, in which for the first time fans outside of the development studio may participate.
According to the current plans, the team wants to publish the first wave of invitations in the next few days. In addition to some already selected journalists, influencers and other media representatives, a small group of "normal" fans will also be allowed to participate. Registration - for both the alpha and beta - is still possible via a special website. However, this seems to be struggling with some technical problems at the moment. By the way, in this first alpha phase only the zone "Bastion" including the corresponding dungeon "the Necrotic Aisle" is available. Furthermore, it seems that only characters of the Alliance will be playable. However, Blizzard Entertainment plans to unlock additional content as the alpha test progresses. Game Director Ion Hazzikostas on this topic:
"Our goal is to make new content available regularly throughout the test cycle. Later in April, we plan to release the Revendreth zone as well as our endless dungeon Torghast, Tower of the Damned for testing. We will continuously unlock content such as zones, dungeons, and max level questlines when they are ready for testing. As needed, we'll use character templates to direct testing and feedback to specific parts of the game. Once all content is released in the testing environment, we will officially move into a beta phase for which all characters will be cleared and a larger number of players will be invited to test the full Shadowlands experience with all content."
However, a concrete release date for World of Warcraft: Shadowlands remains undetermined as of yet. Blizzard will certainly wait for the testing phases to run their course before making a final decision. We will keep you up to date.