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Which Should You Play: World Of Warcraft Shadowlands Or Classic?

World of Warcraft, Blizzard's popular MMORPG, now has two entirely different versions out in the wild: standard WoW, and the throwback World of Warcraft Classic. Whether you're a brand new player or a grizzled veteran, you may be torn about which release you should be playing. The two games do offer two totally different experiences, after all. They are definitely not the same. You can decide which gets your time, though, by figuring out what it is you're ultimately after.

Below, you'll get a rundown of what World of Warcraft has to offer, including what's on the way in the upcoming Shadowlands expansion. You'll also get a brief explainer about what World of Warcraft Classic is, and what it has on tap that might appeal to longtime WoW players and brand new recruits. After that, the decision will rest solely with you. Some World of Warcraft fans might believe there is no wrong choice, but perhaps this information can help you make one all the same.

World of Warcraft: Shadowlands is the new stuff

Are you all about playing the latest and greatest thing? Do you want to be part of the zeitgeist, so to speak, and take on fresh new adventures with everyone else who is also doing so for the first time? If so, standard World of Warcraft might be your cup of tea. There are already numerous challenges to take on in WoW, and the Shadowlands expansion — due out in Fall 2020 — will add even more.

If you're brand new to the game but want to see what all the fuss is about, Shadowlands could serve as a good starting point. Likewise, if you're someone with years of WoW experience under your belt, Shadowlands will introduce all-new challenges so you can test your mettle, and new features to make the act of playing easier and more fun. Are you ready to run through what Blizzard calls an "infinite dungeon?" Keep an eye out for Shadowlands, then.

World of Warcraft Classic takes you back

Don't let the name fool you — World of Warcraft Classic isn't an older version of the game that's since been abandoned. Instead, it's a "faithful recreation" of WoW's past that many veterans actually begged for. Some players have been living the World of Warcraft experience for over 15 years now, and have seen a lot of change come in that time. You can think of World of Warcraft Classic like an old photo album — it lets those old-school fans relive some of their favorite memories, but unlike a photo album, WoW Classic is interactive.

That's not to say you need a long and storied history with World of Warcraft to appreciate Classic, however. If you're someone who plays the more modern version of the game, or if you've never stepped foot in an MMORPG before, you may have the desire to educate yourself about WoW's past. Doing so could help you understand some of the nuances of World of Warcraft. That, in turn, could help make you a better player.