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World of Warcraft patch 5.3 adds new Scenarios, Heroic mode

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Blizzard Entertainment's upcoming 5.3 patch for World of Warcraft will add four new Scenarios and a new Heroic mode for them as well as for two existing Scenarios, the studio announced today.

The four Scenarios are "Blood in the Snow," in which you assist with the defense of the dwarven capital; "Dark Heart of Pandaria," a cleanup mission in the Vale of Eternal Blossoms; "Secrets of Ragefire," in which you help the Gob Squad track a kidnapper; and "Battle on the High Seas" (screenshot above), a naval battle between the Horde and Alliance.

World of Warcraft's new Heroic mode is a tougher difficulty setting that's available for the aforementioned Scenarios and for "Crypt of Forgotten Kings" and "A Brewing Storm." Queuing for Heroic mode requires an item level of 480, and a few hardy friends. It's a stiff challenge, but the rewards are alluring: you'll receive Valor Points and will have the chance to discover Raid Finder-quality items.

Blizzard said last month that patch 5.3 will also introduce a new feature called Loot Specialization. The studio hasn't yet announced a release date for patch 5.3; patch 5.2, "The Thunder King," went live in early March.