World of Warcraft: Cataclysm is the third expansion pack for the massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) World of Warcraft, following the last expansion Wrath of the Lich King. It was officially announced at BlizzCon on August 21, 2009, although dataminers and researchers discovered details before it was officially announced by Blizzard. The expansion was officially released on December 7, 2010.
With the release of Cataclysm, the level cap has been raised from 80 to 85. Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms have been redesigned with a changed appearance and some new towns. The quest system has been refreshed with almost 3500 new quests along with new and streamlined low and mid-level quests to complement the redesigned areas of Azeroth. Seven new dungeons and four new raids have been added as well as a new secondary skill, Archeology. The glyph system has been overhauled to now have three types of glyph: prime, major, minor. Furthermore, glyphs are now permanently learned and require a reagent to remove from a slot. Two new races have been added, the Worgen and Goblins. In addition, existing classes have been expanded to be available to more races. The major cities of Orgrimmar, Stormwind and Dalaran have all experienced major changes. Lastly, the existing talent system has been overhauled. Players are awarded their first talent point at level 10, the next at 11, and then once per two levels until level 80. Levels 81 through 85 receives a talent point at every level bringing the total to 41.
Many of these changes were put into place as of patch 4.0.1, which added all the new systems (new talents, glyph system, spell changes, resource changes, pets at level one, removal of stats from items and from the game, mastery, and others). The changes to old zones were made in patch 4.0.3a, which was released to live servers on November 23, 2010.