It’s still a fair way away from release, but World of Warcraft: Legion is officially playable. It might not be quite as ready as you think, though. Blizzard promised the new WoW expansion would be playable in beta mode “within weeks” of this month’s BlizzCon event, but the client available now through Battle.net is quite obviously an alpha build.
What that means is you’re looking at a very early version of the game, likely to not only be full of bugs, but also full of things that are going to be changed before the final release hits shelves.
According to Blizzard Watch, the alpha test isn’t showing up in user accounts in the normal place. Traditionally, Blizzard has put alpha/beta access on the Battle.net page under Account Information, but not this time. Instead, to find out if you’ve got access to the new stuff, you’ll need to load up your Battle.net launcher and check under “Region / Account”. If there’s an entry marked “Alpha: Legion”, you’re in. If not… better luck later.
Another way to find out about your access is simply to log into Battle.net as you would normally. If you see not one, but two public test realms for World of Warcraft – one labelled WoW1 and the other numbered “something else” (WoW4, WoW5 and WoW6 have all been reported) – it might be a sign. Check the launcher before you set off the fireworks, though, just in case.
…and, frustratingly, all of this information only really benefits PC gamers. While Legion certainly is headed to Mac (like all other WoW content), the Mac alpha client isn’t working right now. You can download it and install, but it won’t do you any good.
From the Blizzard tech support forum:
It installs everything on mac except the application binaries. They are missing from CDN which means when you try to click “play” it’ll fail to find valid binaries and abort.
Don’t worry, this isn’t an overwatch situation though. Mac is supported, just delayed, much like Diablo 3 2.4 PTR which only worked on PC for about a week or two. It’s just the nature of having an understaffed mac team :\ Things can’t be ready at the same time.
Perhaps if you are in the alpha but also on a Mac, it might be worth borrowing a PC to access the new stuff? You shouldn’t have to wait too long to play it on your own machine, fingers crossed – the Mac client will be playable from the next build onward, but Blizzard aren’t offering an ETA just yet.
If you are in the alpha, and you’re able to talk about it, let us know! What’s new? What’s different? What’s exactly the same?