Burning Crusade Classic official artwork without logo

[Update]: Blizzard has toned down the absurdly expensive Character Copy service for Burning Crusade Classic.

A fair bit of time has gone by since the original announcement, but I'm happy to say that the long wait will soon be over! According to Blizzard's latest developer update, World of Warcraft: Burning Crusade Classic will be launching at 3pm PDT on June 1st!

If you would like to get in on the action a little bit ahead of time, it's also worth mentioning that the pre-expansion patch will be arriving on May 18th. It'll bring with it all of the major balance changes and gameplay tweaks to help pave the way towards Outland, as well as the ability to create and level Blood Elf and Draenei characters, including Paladins for the Horde and Shamans for the Alliance!

Should you decide to go with a brand new character, you likely won't have enough time to get them up to level 58 in order to participate in the initial madness in Outland, even with the boosted experience gain that comes with the pre-patch. While a bit annoying, I have a feeling this was done intentionally in order to avoid the gigantic queues that plagued Classic's original launch.

Unfortunately, I do have one bit of a bad news as well. The micro-transactions that Blizzard announced would be coming as a part of Burning Crusade Classic are anything but micro in nature!

The Character Cloning Service that lets you copy a character to a forever-Classic realm will set you back $35, while a level 58 Character Boost will cost you an absurd $40! And if that just isn't enough, there will also be a Burning Crusade Deluxe Edition that offers a couple of cosmetics, a boost and 30 days of game time for the low, low price of $70! On the positive side, at least none of the paid stuff is mandatory or even all that useful, so you can safely ignore it and still have a great time with Burning Crusade Classic.

Once the pre-patch goes live I'll make sure to let you know. Until then, you can read a little bit more about the upcoming launch over at the WoW website.