World of Warcraft: Shadowlands season four goes live today, Aug. 2, and the final season of the expansion will mix things up in a way that other seasons in past WoW expansions never have before.
Shadowlands season four will bring older content from past expansions, as well as content from earlier in the current expansion, back into relevancy through increased difficulty levels.
For the first time in the history of WoW, the final season of an expansion is set to bring raids from earlier in the expansion back into the regular content fold, giving players a full experience of what the expansion had to offer while keeping the difficulty level up to speed.
These updated raids are called “Fated raids,” and are scaled up to players’ current power levels as of Patch 9.2.5. All three of the raids from the Shadowlands expansion—Castle Nathria, Sanctum of Domination, and Sepulcher of the First Ones—will be scaled up to match the appropriate loot and power creep associated with Shadowlands season four, despite the fact the three raids were released during the first three seasons of the expansions, respectively.
What does the schedule for Fated raids look like?
Fated raids will be playable on a rotating schedule, with Castle Nathria, the Sanctum of Domination, and the Sepulcher of the First Ones each being available on the “Fated” difficulty during a different week. No two raids will be available to play on Fated difficulty during the same weekly reset period. Starting today, Castle Nathria will be available on Fated difficulty. Next week, starting Aug. 9, Fated Sanctum of Domination will be available, while Fated Sepulcher of the First Ones will be available on Aug. 16. This rotating three-week schedule will eventually be removed, and all raids will be available on Fated difficulty “later in the season,” according to Blizzard.
Apart from an increase in raw health and damage numbers for bosses and enemies in each raid, Fated raids will bring a variant of the affix system from Mythic+ dungeon into raids, making them more challenging by adding extra mechanics to deal with apart from the systems already in place.
One of four affixes—Creation Spark, Protoform Barrier, Chaotic Essence, and Reconfiguration Emitter—can be active in a Fated raid at a given time.
Fated raids come with fated rewards
The increased difficulty for Fated raids doesn’t come without rewards, of course, as players can expect higher item level gear to be available to loot. Additionally, players will be able to fully equip their best-in-slot builds with weapons, trinkets, and tier pieces from across the entirety of the expansion, combining gear from all three Shadowlands raids to create new, yet slightly familiar, high-level loadouts.
Shadowlands season four will cause the mark of item level 300 to be eclipsed for the first time since the Battle for Azeroth expansion. Here are the item levels raiders can expect to loot from Fated Shadowlands raids.
- Looking for Raid: Item Level 265-272
- Normal: Item Level 278-285
- Heroic: Item Level 291-297
- Mythic: Item Level 304-311
Completing each Fated raid on a specific difficulty will also reward players with unique rewards. Clearing all three Fated raids on Normal difficulty will award players the Jigglesworth Sr. mount, a large saber-toothed cat made completely of gelatinous slime.
Completing the Fated raids on Heroic difficulty will give players the “Hero of Fate” title, while completing them on Mythic difficulty awards players with teleport spells to the entrances of each Shadowlands raid, similarly to the spells in place for achieving Keystone Master feats of strength in Mythic+ dungeons.