Just after Xfire’s report on the huge negative response from World of Warcraft players to the cloning price for the Burning Crusade Classic, Blizzard has relented. The initial price of $35 to duplicate a character from World of Warcraft Classic to Burning Crusade Classic caused a massive uproar that has apparently been successful in getting Blizzard to change its stance.
Read on for the details of the Burning Crusade cloning price update and the statement from Blizzard regarding the issue.
World of Warcraft to Burning Crusade Classic
As previously reported, Burning Crusade Classic will be launched on a series of servers that are separate from the current vanilla World of Warcraft Classic. By default, all players will have the option to retain their existing characters on the World of Warcraft Classic servers to either continue playing there or progress to the new Burning Crusade Classic servers. This service would have no charge associated.
However, players may also choose to duplicate their existing World of Warcraft Classic character. This cloning option would allow the player to retain the character for playing in the World of Warcraft Classic server, as well as having that character continue from that point into the Burning Crusade Classic servers.
To illustrate, if you have a level 50 Human Alliance Paladin named Grok currently running around in Word of Warcraft Classic, you can either keep him adventuring in the vanilla Classic server or continue to progress in the Burning Crusade Classic for free. But for a cloning fee, Grok can have a copy of himself in both servers. This way, the player does not need to start from scratch and experience having their character gain access to the content the first World of Warcraft expansion offers, such as new areas, new quests, professions, gear, mounts, and items.
The World of Warcraft Community Cries Foul
For players of World of Warcraft, using the Classic server itself does not have any additional fees. If you have an ongoing monthly subscription for the current version of World of Warcraft, then you already have access to the Classic version as well. The expectation from the player base is that the Burning Crusade will also follow suit.
Blizzard then announced that, starting May 18th, customers can purchase the Dark Portal Pass and its Deluxe edition which offer extras, including a level boost to 58, race specific mounts, level-appropriate gear, Runecloth bags, gold, and a number of cosmetic items. Although expected, the WoW player community did not respond too negatively, aside from the lack of useful in-game bonuses and too much focus on the cosmetics versus the asking price for these premium options.
However, the announcement that the cloning service would be $35 per character to be duplicated from the World of Warcraft Classic server onto the Burning Crusade Classic server sparked massive outrage. WoW players took to the official forums and social media, voicing out their displeasure at what was viewed as a cheap money grab from Blizzard, taking advantage of its loyal customer base.
$35 to transfer a classic era character? Are you guys insane? You have to level again from 1-70 if you don't want to spend money?
This crap costs $15 a month still. pic.twitter.com/gz5Q33JZ1C
— Kalopsia (@Waddedmoose) May 6, 2021
Over the next few days that followed the revelation of the Burning Crusade Classic cloning fee, more and more players voiced their dissatisfaction at the decision. Most respondents expressed their resolve not to use the cloning option and pay Blizzard the $35.
Blizzard Course Correction
In the official Blizzard World of Warcraft Classic forums, community manager Kaivax posted Blizzard's course correction, as it was referred to, in reference to the cloning fee. The first part of Blizzard’s announcement provides an explanation as to why the initial price of $35 for the cloning fee was chosen:
This service – providing a player with a second copy of a character in a different game – is new for us. Our original concept of the value of this service was largely based on how we price other optional items and services. We want players who choose Classic Era realms to feel as though their choice comes with the possibility that they’ll be able to build relationships and guilds with other players they can count on.
The second part of the announcement is where the WoW community’s dissatisfaction over the cloning fee price is properly addressed, including the updated price:
However, over the last week or so, we’ve gotten a very large amount of feedback from the community, and we’ve decided to lower the price. A lower price will likely still accomplish our goals with the new service, while allowing many more players to explore the option of playing characters on both Classic Era and Burning Crusade Classic realms.
According to Blizzard, the new pricing will be dropped from $35 to $15. For the European Union, the price will be €15 (£11). Thus far, the World of Warcraft Classic player community seems to think this is an acceptable resolution. Although there are still some players who feel the new pricing is too high, with $10 to $12 being the suggested ideal price point.
The World of Warcraft: Burning Crusade Classic pre-patch is available on May 18 and is set to fully launch on June 1, 2021.