World of Warcraft Classic's artwork for Nefarian

[Update]: The fresh Season of Mastery servers have now arrived, and so far I'm happy to say everything seems to be working as expected.

In order to revitalize World of Warcraft Classic, Blizzard will be launching an assortment of fresh servers this November 16th alongside the Season of Mastery. However, unlike the original WoW Classic that mostly stuck to the "no changes" motto, the Season of Mastery servers will bring with them a variety of changes to help improve the overall experience.

Speaking of which, the experience required to reach level 60 will be getting reduced to Burning Crusade Classic levels, while many items available only in the latter portion of Classic's life will be dropping as soon as the servers launch. The most important addition here is the Dungeon Set 2 quest chain which awards amazing gear for quite a few classes and is easily achievable for even casual players.

You can also expect to see all three PvP battlegrounds available from day one. Not only will this make the PvP side of the playerbase a lot happier, but it should also cut down on the ganking epidemic that nearly ruined some WoW Classic servers in the early days of Phase 2.

Season of Mastery will also remove the 16 debuff limit, remove world buffs while in raids, as well as beef up all of the raid bosses in order to make the encounters more challenging. The one worry here is that longer encounters will heavily favor classes like Rogues and Warriors that don't rely on mana, but according to Blizzard, their testing has found that the most successful teams were the ones with the greatest amount of class diversity so hopefully this won't be an issue.

To further help raiders out, Blizzard will also be increasing the availability of frequently used consumables. As such, you can expect to see more Pleaguebloom in the world, Black Lotus to randomly drop from high level Herbalism nodes, as well as a lot more Elemental Fire, Elemental Earth and Elemental Water.

Unfortunately, despite these drastic changes to pretty much every aspect of the game, the classes will remain exactly as they are. So if you were hoping your favorite off-meta spec would get a bit of a boost to make it competitive with Warriors or Mages, I'm afraid you're out of luck. I can only that hope future seasons will bring with them a general class rebalance because while I do love Classic's gameplay, I'd love it a whole lot more if pretty much every class and playstyle was a valid option.

Once Season of Mastery launches on November 16th I'll make sure to let you know. Until then, you can read a little bit more about Blizzard's intention behind these changes over at the WoW forums.