It’s finally done. Somewhere, I imagine, in Bobby Kotick’s basement or perhaps sitting unassuming on one of his many fireplace mantles is a beautiful, ornate jar swirling with power. Infused with the blood, sweat and tears of Michael Morhaime and J. Allen Brack and powered by the wishful desires of hundreds of millions of fans sits the phylactery that will keep World of Warcraft alive millennia after we all perish. Probably.

I remember when World of Warcraft first launched in late 2004 and the phenomena it became following. At the time, I was engrossed in my first MMORPG, Final Fantasy XI. Now THAT’S an online game. It took real work, real effort, real time to get anything done.

Then Blizzard and the World of Warcraft came along and changed everything. They made it easy to play, easy to get invested, they brought in the casuals from all across the gaming spectrum.

And let’s be clear about something; gaming is better for it.

But that didn’t stop me and most of the Final Fantasy XI players from developing an unhealthy rivalry between the two games. Even when I had finally picked up a copy for myself and started to adventure around Azeroth, I was still waiting for it…the WoW Killer. It was a term we heard often over the next decade.

Would Lord of the Rings Online be the one to dethrone it? What about TERA or Tabula Rasa? No, it quickly became clear there would be no killing World of Warcraft.

And that has never been more true than after the announcement of BlizzcOnline 2021. Most people would argue that once World of Warcraft Classic was a success that behemoth MMO had achieved its immortality. But there was still a chance players would grow bored of it and the player base would dwindle…such a line of thinking was folly.

With the announcement of World of Warcraft Classic launching The Burning Crusade expansion it’s completed the circle. The pact has been sealed. From now until a rogue solar flare knocks out all power and fries all electronics on Earth, Activision Blizzard can continue to release expansions and games.

In 15 years, when few are playing what is currently WoW Classic, there will be a number of players who yearn for the true classic era. Not the malformed husk that Activision Blizzard will eventually turn it into as they cave into player demand to slowly change it for the better while keeping what worked…and they’ll need to re-re-release the Original World of Warcraft Classic. Or whatever stupid name they’ll call it.

So enjoy your new (old) playable races in the Blood Elf and Draenei, Horde and Alliance scum. Storm the front in Hellfire Peninsula and curse to the devs as you try in vain to collect that one last Hellboar Haunch. Enjoy the Circle of Blood or Ring of Trials, wiping time and time again in Black Temple and Sunwell Plateau.

At this point we have no one to blame but ourselves, Activision Blizzard is just a company pursuing their one directive: make money. And they’re making it hand over fist as we clamor to get empty “world first” kills on re-released raids. News flash, you’re not world first, you’re not even world 1000! I’ve killed all those raids solo on my shaman, shadow priest and who knows how many others!

We, as gamers, never get to complain about remakes or re-releases ever again, because we did this. We helped create the Arch Lich World of Warcraft of Activision Blizzard. Long may it reign.

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