Two years after the announcement of World of Warcraft Classic, this oft-requested server option is now available and transporting many players back to 2004. While some fans may have been skeptical that players would show up en masse for the vanilla WoW experience, WoW Classic certainly appears to be a hit, and some newly available data offers further evidence that players really were longing to return to the original Azeroth.
Specifically, SuperData indicates that World of Warcraft subscriptions increased approximately 223 percent from July to August. While it is stated that the current WoW player count is below what it was when Battle for Azeroth, the game's seventh expansion, released last August, this increase certainly suggests that there are a great number of players interested in WoW Classic.
With that said, it remains to be seen if this interest, and increased WoW subscriptions, will hold for a significant amount of time. While many players are still methodically making their way to the game's level cap, some of the most dedicated fans have already killed Ragnaros and Onyxia in WoW Classic. These are the most challenging encounters that the game currently has to offer, and only time will tell if players will be satisfied farming them until the next phase of WoW Classic comes.
With respect to when the next WoW Classic phase will release, that is currently unknown. There has been indication that WoW Classic phase two, which will introduce content like Dire Maul and two world bosses, will come "around a couple of months" after launch, but no official release date has been revealed. As such, players may need to occupy themselves with WoW Classic's current content for at least one more month before anything new arrives.
Regardless of World of Warcraft Classic's ability to sustain increased subscriptions, the spike in the game's player base certainly suggests that the initial interest is there. Whether these subscriptions are coming from fans looking to relive old experience or those that want to be part of the phenomenon that was vanilla WoW for the very first time, WoW Classic is providing a special opportunity that many players will not want to miss.
World of Warcraft Classic is available now on PC. World of Warcraft: Battle for Azeroth is available now on PC.