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WoW Patch 3.3 Guide

Icecrown Citadel
The focal point of the patch, and ultimately of the entire expansion, lies behind the Deathgates of Icecrown, where Arthas sits upon his frozen throne awaiting the heroes of Azeroth. Led by the Ashen Verdict, the newly combined forces of the Knights of the Ebon Blade and the Argent Crusade, players finally get the chance to vanquish the Lich King once and for all.

The instance will continue the format that has been refined throughout the expansion, featuring ten and twenty five player raid zones with both normal and heroic modes. There will also be a five player dungeon in the area with regular and heroic modes as well. The raid instance features twelve encounters for players to conquer, with multiple wings and the usual host of liches, dragons, patchworks and undead – oh my!

All across the lands of Northrend, many battles have been fought against the vile Scourge. Countless lives have been lost since the Alliance and Horde first reached the frozen wastes, but the champions of Azeroth continue to march forward. Now Icecrown Citadel, the cornerstone of the Scourge's power and the home base of the Lich King, is their final target. Tirion Fordring and the Argent Crusade have forged an alliance with Darion Mograine and the Knights of the Ebon Blade to form the Ashen Verdict. The strongest combatants of this coalition, along with the champions of the Alliance and Horde, will lead the charge against the citadel.

This dungeon reveals the culminating story events and battles of the Wrath of the Lich King expansion pack. Join the legendary heroes Highlord Tirion Fordring, High Overlord Saurfang, Muradin Bronzebeard, Highlord Darion Mograine, and King Varian Wrynn in an epic battle against the Scourge and their master. Icecrown Citadel features 10- and 25-player versions of the raid dungeon, and each version has 12 encounters. Each encounter can be fought in either normal or Heroic mode, and players can use a new user interface feature to toggle easily between difficulties. The rewards in the raid dungeon start at item level 251 in the normal mode with 10-player encounters, increase to item level 264 in the Heroic mode with 10 players and the normal mode with 25-player encounters, and then finally reach item level 277 in the Heroic mode with 25 players.

The Skybreaker in a unique encounter. Each faction will protect its gunship and try to destroy the other one in a back-and-forth battle to see who is truly worthy of facing the Lich King.

The Lich King's most powerful death knight then stands as the final obstacle for the heroes to enter the upper reaches of the citadel.

After the heroes of the Alliance or Horde defeat the other faction on the gunships and wipe out the creatures near the entrance, players will venture into an area with three separate wings. Here they will face a multitude of terrors that must be vanquished in order to confront the Lich King.

Cross Server Instance Que
Another highly anticipated (or dreaded) feature of 3.3 is the addition of cross server pugging. The newly redesigned LFG tool will link up players of the same battlegroup, allowing them to join non-pvp instances in much the same way that BGs work now. This should be a huge boon to low population realms where putting together a viable group for the daily heroic or any other instance run, now players from ten to twelve realms can all stew over the fact that there never is a tank or healer when you need one. The LFG tool itself is also getting a substantial overhaul that should improve overall functionality.

Altoholics Rejoice!

Multiple enhancements are being made to help the speed of leveling, as well as revamps to many of the underpinnings to character mechanics and starting items. WoW has always been an alt friendly game and this list of updates will help expedite the process even more, especially for traditionally low DPS classes and hybrids.

Class Changes
There are a whole slate of class changes coming with this patch, virtually assuring the forums will soon be aflame with the rants and raves of vocal players. In addition to the specific class changes a couple of notable modifications to game mechanics, among the most substantial is a change to the popular racial ability Will of the Forsaken. The fear breaking mechanic will now share a 45 second cooldown timer with other items that have a similar effect. The cries of those that plunked down the coin to race change for the three days prior to this announcement can be heard for miles.

Also receiving a change is the way AoE damage is distributed, going from a maximum number of targets to a maximum amount of damage per target. Troll and Orc Shamans will now feel more unique as their totems receive a revamp, becoming more orcish and troll-like.

Patch 3.3 is one of the most highly ambitious patches to hit the game since Wrath launched, and many of its changes will help pave the way to the transition to patch 4.0. Keep in mind that while most of these changes will end up live, this is still on the test realm and is subject to change at any time. For a full list of all the changes you can keep up to date by frequenting this page as it is revised often. I hope you are as excited as I am to see this content up close and personal. As always, stay safe and have fun in Azeroth.