Years ago I would preorder expansions pretty early in the build up to their launch. There was a practical reason for this, of course, as shops would sell out of copies of the expansion’s box and mail-order copies might fail to turn-up on time. We would generally go grab our copy of the latest World of Warcraft expansion, or Guild Wars 1 box from a Game Store somewhere in the city.
At some point online shopping took over, maybe it was Warlords that we bought physically but from Amazon. I guess I even have an emails somewhere to prove which were bought through that channel. More recently buying an expansion feels more like subbing, its an account feature that you buy through the store and ‘unlock’. So there’s no real scarcity issues to deal with and I can choose to buy the expansion just before the launch, on the very day it unlocks or even afterwards if I’m too busy to play.
Coming up soon I have the Shadowlands expansion to buy for World of Warcraft and then the Reign of Shadows expansion for Everquest 2. In the case of Shadowlands I’ll buy the expansion just before it launches, maybe this weekend. Although there shouldn’t be any scarcity of supply, the account and store servers could be crippled by the same crush of players that is inevitably going to lead to log-in queues. I wouldn’t want to be stuck out of the rush to the afterlife because the store is down.
In the case of Reign of Shadows I’ll probably buy it a bit earlier, but I’m not sure exactly how long Shadowlands will have me enthralled so it may be a bit after the launch of the expansion that I really dig into the new content. Still having it unlocked will be worthwhile even if it’s to allow me more time to look at the revamped AA system before playing my characters properly.
Lots of content to look forward over the coming months! Here’s hoping I can find the free time to enjoy it all…