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Shadowlands is bringing back tons of tools and toys to World of Warcraft classes

Frost Death Knights and Enhancement Shamans are overjoyed

World of Warcraft - a group of Death Knights from Allied Races pose at Acherus Image: Blizzard Entertainment
Cass Marshall is a news writer focusing on gaming and culture coverage, taking a particular interest in the human stories of the wild world of online games.

World of Warcraft fans have a big complaint with the current expansion, Battle for Azeroth. Players said the classes are too stripped down and streamlined, leading to a frustrating experience. Blizzard seems on track to change this with the next expansion, Shadowlands.

Today, Blizzard released a new blog post that explains the big picture changes coming for each class and specialization in Shadowlands, and there are some juicy morsels there for long-time World of Warcraft fans.

Fans can check out the post for a full list of all changes, but some of the biggest points have to do with either making an ability standard for all specs, instead of just one, or bringing back an old ability from past expansions that was trimmed away later on. For instance, classes like Rogues and Priests are getting more baseline abilities that are shared across all specializations. Meanwhile, classes like Shamans and Mages are getting reworks so that they have more to do in parties and raids, and a better flow in solo combat.

A lot of these changes are small things that add up quickly, but a few classes are getting big, fun tools back. Frost Death Knights are getting the ability to choose between two one-handed weapons, or one two-hander again, which opens up different ways to play. As a Paladin main, I dread the fact that Warriors can once again shatter invulnerable barriers, making maneuvers like the bubble hearth much more difficult to pull off.

All of the changes discussed on Blizzard’s blog are subject to further iteration; the Shadowlands expansion is just entering alpha, so there’s a lot of time for the developers to hone in on certain skills and find ones that aren’t working.

Combat and abilities are the bread-and-butter of World of Warcraft’s gameplay, so its nice to see them getting some much-needed love. As players explore the mysterious Shadowlands, they’ll have a lot of buttons to press along the way.