When was World of Warcraft released? All WoW Expansions & Classic

When was World of Warcraft released and how many WoW expansions are there? Here’s an overview of everything you need to know.

As the World of Warcraft universe continues to expand, there are a slew of stories yet to be told and vistas that remain in the shadows.

Building on the age-old stories of Blizzard’s Warcraft franchise, WoW allows players to explore the plains of Azeroth in style and create their own PvP and PvE destinations.

As one of the oldest MMORPGs out there, you might be wondering when World of Warcraft was actually released, and the timeline for all of its numerous expansions. Here’s everything you need to know, from WoW’s first release date to the dates each new episode came out.


world of warcraft wow jaina on a ship in the battle of azeroth
Blizzard Entertainment

Home to a slew of iconic characters, World of Warcraft is an ever-expanding world.

WoW release date

World of Warcraft released in 2004, sequel to Warcraft III: The Frozen Throne. Since Guild Wars doesn’t arrive until 2005, this makes WoW one of the oldest MMORPGs out there.

All WoW Expansions: From Legion to Shadowlands

WoW has eight several expansions, the most recent being Shadowlands. As we close the book on this divisive chapter of the WoW story, Blizzard has announced that they’ll be unveiling the next WoW expansion (allegedly dubbed “Dragonflight”) on April 19.

For now, though, here are all the current expansions, listed chronologically by release date:

Expansion Publication date
The Burning Crusade 2007
Wrath of the Lich King 2008
catastrophe 2010
Mist of Pandaria 2012
Warlords of Draenor 2014
Legion 2016
Battle for Azeroth 2018
Shadowlands 2020

What is WoW Classic? Release date & info

Released in 2019, WoW Classic effectively recreates the Azeroth of yesteryear. While it originally mimicked the WoW universe before one of the expansions, this changed to 2020 with the release of The Burning Crusade Classic.

By bringing the Twisted Nether back to life in style and reinventing some of the game’s most iconic dungeons and raids, players can plunge back into the action all over again and take out Illidan once again.

So that’s all you need to know about the release of World of Warcraft, as well as all the various expansions and DLCs it spawned.

Do you want to know more about Azeroth? Be sure to check out our other World of Warcraft guides:

Level up quickly | The best expansion to level through | 5 best add-ons, ranked | How to get Pepe into WoW | Top 5 Best Races for Classes in WoW Shadowlands | How to cancel WoW subscription | Get and upgrade Heirlooms in WoW Shadowlands | WoW Elemental Shaman Guide

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