Blizzard drops Patch 7.1.5 onto World of Warcraft‘s live servers, introducing a bevy of class and profession changes as well as new features like “micro-holidays.”
Blizzard teased most of the major features for World of Warcraft‘s Patch 7.1.5 last week via a Survival Guide trailer that gave players a rundown of what to expect from the patch. Additions to the 12-year-old MMO include everything from Mists of Pandaria Timewalking to the creation of “micro-holidays” as well as an update to the Brawler’s Guild. On Tuesday, the patch officially went live and Blizzard has now released the full 7.1.5 patch notes into the wild.
While players will be most interested in the major updates previously revealed, the patch also includes a lot of under-the-hood changes to World of Warcraft‘s various classes and professions. This isn’t the first time Blizzard has patched in class changes since the successful launch of the Legion last summer, but it’s definitely the most comprehensive balance pass the developer has made this expansion. The full list of updates can be read at WorldofWarcraft.com.
A core feature of the Legion expansion is Artifact Weapons, which can be leveled up through the Artifact Knowledge system, causing players to become more powerful over time. With this patch, players who have let their subscription expire in recent months may find it easier to catch up with the rest of their guild or raid group, thanks to a change to how Artifact Knowledge is gained. But even gamers who have played non-stop since Legion‘s launch stand to benefit because it will now be easier to level up Artifact Weapons on alts.
Patch 7.1.5 also introduces new Legendary items to the game (and makes changes to some existing ones). Legendary items in Legion drop very rarely but can often change a gamer’s entire rotation or playstyle once acquired, usually due to a buff to a specific class ability. The new items should introduce some new wrinkles into the never-ending battle to top the DPS meters.
The patch also puts the final touches in place for The Nighthold, a new raid that opens on January 17. Adventurers will soon be able to take the fight to Gul’dan, an iconic character from Warcraft lore who has served as the main villain of Legion so far. It was revealed during BlizzCon 2016 that after Gul’dan is defeated, players will turn their attention to The Tomb of Sargeras in Patch 7.2 before traveling to Argus to close out the expansion in Patch 7.3.
After the disaster that was the Warlords of Draenor expansion, Blizzard deserves some credit for following through on its promises this time around. While Draenor forced players to go for months on end with no new content, Legion to this point has kept the patches coming semi-frequently. If Blizzard can stick to its roadmap through the end of 2017 and beyond, it’s likely to keep a healthy percentage of its player base subscribed for a long time to come.
World of Warcraft is out now on PC and Mac.