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For the novel by Christie Golden, see The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm. For the Cataclysm event, see Shattering.
Icon-patch-22x22 Patch 4.0.3a
“The Shattering”
Cataclysm Login No text
Cataclysm Login Screen
Release date November 23, 2010
Initial version 13329
Interface .toc 40000
Highlights & notes
  • Cataclysm intro cinematic and login screen
  • Revamped classic Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor zones
  • New race/class combinations for existing races
Official links

Patch chronology
Useful links
PatchesPatches category

Patch 4.0.3a, "The Shattering", is a pre-Cataclysm content patch that updates the old world in preparation for the expansion's release.


This patch is the only patch in World of Warcraft history to be re-released. The original US patch on November 22nd was missing a key skin for boats, so users who patched with the ~20MB version were unable to use any boat. Users who patched in the evening of November 22nd were unaffected as Blizzard had added the missing skin to the patch (~130MB). Unfortunately the streaming client couldn't differentiate between the two separate versions, so on November 29th, this issue was resolved by re-releasing the entire patch to the entire US userbase, followed on November 30th to the EU userbase, with additional content (~162MB). This re-release also released a bug fix for users experiencing disconnection issues on entering a new zone.[1][2]

The Shattering of Azeroth[]


Azeroth after the Cataclysm.

In the frigid wastes of Northrend, the final battle against the merciless Lich King ended in victory for Azeroth's defenders. Upon returning home, veterans of the unforgiving conflict against the Scourge were showered with praise for their valiant sacrifices, while the honorable dead were mourned. Yet as hope flared anew in the wake of the Lich King's fall, Azeroth's native elemental spirits grew confused and erratic, setting off a series of deadly natural disasters. Horde and Alliance leaders scrambled for clues about the troubling state of the world, but nothing could have prepared them for what was to come.

Without warning, the corrupted Dragon Aspect, Deathwing, erupted from the stone heart of Deepholm, the domain of earth within the Elemental Plane. Jagged fissures were torn across the earth, and monstrous waves pummeled coastal regions. From Thousand Needles to the Blasted Lands, the surface of Azeroth was reforged through violent upheavals. Now, the Horde and the Alliance must defend their homes against Deathwing and his minions, burdened by the unsettling fact that the world as they know it has changed... forever.


Patch 4.0.3a race / class chart
DeathKnight Druid Hunter Mage Paladin Priest Rogue Shaman Warlock Warrior
Alliance DraeneiDraenei Draenei Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Alliance DwarfDwarf Dwarf Yes Yes New Yes Yes Yes New New Yes
Alliance GnomeGnome Gnome Yes Yes New Yes Yes Yes
Alliance HumanHuman Human Yes New Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Alliance Night elfNight elf Night elf Yes Yes Yes New Yes Yes Yes
Horde Blood elfBlood elf Blood elf Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes New
Horde OrcOrc Orc Yes Yes New Yes Yes Yes Yes
Horde TaurenTauren Tauren Yes Yes Yes New New Yes Yes
Horde TrollTroll Troll Yes New Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes New Yes
Horde UndeadUndead Undead Yes New Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Main article: Patch 4.0.3a (world changes)
  • Azeroth Shattered
    • Deathwing's return has had an immeasurable impact throughout the Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor. Players will notice drastically altered terrain, thousands of new quests from levels 1-60, and updated level ranges for some zones to improve the questing flow.
  • New Race/Class Combinations
    • In the wake of a world on the brink of destruction, members of the Horde and Alliance have taken to new cultures and studies, mastering crafts previously foreign to them. Many existing playable races now have new class combinations.
  • The World of Warcraft: Cataclysm cinematic trailer and login screen have been added to the game.
  • Experience required to gain levels 71 through 80 has been reduced by 20%, which increases leveling rate by 25%.
  • Many quests in zones on Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor have been removed from the game to make way for new adventures. These quests have been automatically removed from players' Quest Logs.


Death Knights[]

  • Spell shadow deathpact [Death Pact] now heals for 25% of maximum health, down from 40%.
  • Spell deathknight butcher2 [Death Strike] now heals for 25% of damage taken in the last 5 seconds, down from 30%, and will heal for a minimum of 7% of maximum health, down from 10%.
  • Spell deathknight iceboundfortitude [Icebound Fortitude] now provides 20% damage reduction, down from 30% (now 50%, down from 60% when talented), and has a 3-minute cooldown, up from 2 minutes.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Blood
      • Spell deathknight runetap [Rune Tap] now heals for 10% of maximum health, down from 15%. The tooltip may not yet be updated to reflect this change.
  • Glyphs
  • Bug Fixes
    • Spell deathknight frostfever [Frost Fever] critical strikes now apply the correct amount of bonus damage.
    • Inv misc horn 02 [Horn of Winter] will once again provide runic power when used while another Attack Power buff is already present on the death knight.


  • Ability racial bearform [Bear Form] now provides 10% bonus health, down from 20%.
  • Ability druid nourish [Nourish] no longer consumes Spell nature crystalball [Omen of Clarity].
  • Spell nature rejuvenation [Rejuvenation] has had its mana cost increased by 30%.
  • Ability hunter beastsoothe [Soothe] now has a 1.5-second cast time.
  • Inv misc monsterclaw 03 [Swipe] can now be used even if the druid does not have a primary target selected.
  • Spell nature thorns [Thorns]: beginner tooltip revised to no longer imply the spell could be kept up at all times. In addition, Thorns damage has been reduced by 60%.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Balance
      • PvP set bonus redesigned. While not in an Eclipse state, critical attacks against the druid restore 5 Solar or 7 Lunar energy, whichever is more beneficial. This effect can only occur once every 6 seconds.
    • Feral
      • Ability druid bash [Brutal Impact] now increases the mana cost of spells on the victim by 5/10% for 10 seconds, down from 15/30%.
      • Spell nature unyeildingstamina [Leader of the Pack] now heals for 4%, down from 8%.
      • Ability druid tigersroar [Survival Instincts] now provides 50% damage reduction, down from 60%, and its cooldown has been lowered from 5 minutes to 3 minutes.
      • Inv misc monsterclaw 03 [Swipe] damage has been reduced by 20%.
      • Vengeance is no longer cleared on exiting Bear Form, and instead is cleared upon entering Cat Form.
    • Restoration
  • Glyphs
    • Glyph of Healing Touch now reduces the cooldown on Nature's Swiftness by 10 seconds after using Healing Touch, up from 5 seconds.
    • Inv glyph minordruid [Glyph of the Treant] (new) allows druids to keep the original treant Tree of Life look... if they must. Must they?
  • Bug Fixes


  • All special attacks based on weapon damage (except Ability golemstormbolt [Scatter Shot]) are now normalized.
  • Ability druid cower [Scare Beast] is now available at level 36, up from level 14, and has had its training cost updated.
  • Ability whirlwind [Deterrence] is now available at level 78, up from level 36, and has had its training cost updated.
  • Ability rogue feint [Disengage] is now available at level 14, down from level 78, and has had its training cost updated.
  • Glyphs
    • The level requirements for glyphs that affect Scare Beast, Deterrence, and Disengage have been altered to correspond with the level changes of these abilities.
  • Bug Fixes
    • The Core Hound pet ability Spell shadow unholyfrenzy [Ancient Hysteria] now places its own unique debuff on affected players that has the same effect as Sated and Exhaustion.
    • Certain pets should no longer forget how to Ability druid dash [Dash].


  • Spell arcane blast [Arcane Blast] now increases damage of the next Arcane Blast by 10% per stack, down from 20%, reduces cast time by 0.1 seconds per stack, and increases the mana cost by 150%, down from 175%. In addition, the base cast time of Arcane Blast has been lowered to 2.35 seconds.
  • Spell nature wispsplode [Arcane Explosion] now costs 15% of base mana, down from 18%.
  • Spell nature starfall [Arcane Missiles] damage has been increased by 5%.
  • PvP set 4-piece bonus changed to increase damage by 5% instead of providing 5% Haste.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Arcane
      • Ability mage arcanebarrage [Arcane Barrage] damage has been increased by 5% and its cooldown is now 4 seconds, down from 5 seconds.
      • Spell shadow manaburn [Arcane Concentration]: Now has a much higher chance (13/27/40%) of entering a Clearcasting state. This effect cannot occur more than once every 15 seconds. The tooltip still states that there is a 3/6/10% chance, as it averages out to approximately the same chance with the internal cooldown applied.
      • Spell fire twilightfire [Arcane Specialization] again increases arcane damage by 25%.
    • Fire
      • Spell fire burningspeed [Blazing Speed] no longer dispels movement slowing effects (it still dispels effects that totally stop movement).
      • Spell fire fire [Fire Specialization] again increases periodic fire damage effects by 25%.
      • Spell fire firearmor [Molten Shields] now also causes Blazing Speed to dispel movement slowing effects in addition to its current functionality.
      • Spell fire fireball02 [Pyroblast] base mana cost is now 17%, down from 22%.
      • Spell mage flameorb [Flame Orb] added.
    • Frost
  • Glyphs
  • Bug Fixes


  • Spell holy excorcism 02 [Exorcism] damage has been increased by approximately 50%.
  • Spell paladin divinecircle [Holy Radiance] now has reduced effectiveness on targets over 8 yards away from the paladin.
  • Spell holy sealofvengeance [Seal of Truth]: periodic damage from Censure reduced by 25%.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Holy
      • Ability paladin beaconoflight [Beacon of Light] now lasts 5 minutes, up from 60 seconds.
      • Spell holy blessedlife [Blessed Life]: the effects of this talent cannot occur more than once every 8 seconds, up from every 2 seconds.
      • Illuminated Healing absorb shield now absorbs 10% of the total amount healed, up from 8%. Each point of Mastery increases the effect by an additional 1.25%, up from 1%.
      • Spell paladin lightofdawn [Light of Dawn] has been redesigned. It no longer has an enforced cooldown, now costs Holy Power instead of mana, and scale in direct proportion to the amount of Holy Power used. In addition, it now heals the 5 most injured group targets (including self) in a 30-yard frontal cone.
      • Ability paladin protectoroftheinnocent [Protector of the Innocent] no longer triggers from self-heals.
    • Protection
      • Divine Bulwark now grants 2.25% less block chance per point of Mastery, up from 2%.
      • Inv shield 1h hyrja d 01 [Holy Shield] no longer increases chance to block. Instead, it increases the amount blocked by an additional 10%, for a total of 40% damage blocked.
      • Ability paladin shieldofvengeance [Shield of the Righteous]: Contribution of attack power halved (now 60% with full Holy Power) and base damage brought up so that a level 85 paladin in Heroic dungeon gear deals the same damage with no Vengeance, but Vengeance has less impact.
      • Ability paladin shieldofthetemplar [Shield of the Templar] now reduces the cooldown of Guardian of Ancient Kings by 40/80/120 seconds, down from 1/2/3 minutes.
      • Inv mace 82 [Wrath of the Lightbringer] now increases Crusader Strike and Judgement damage by 50/100%, up from 30/60%.
    • Retribution
      • Spell holy crusade [Crusade] now also has a proc on kill to increase the healing done by the paladin's next Holy Light by 100/200/300% for 15 seconds, in addition to its current effects.
      • Ability paladin divinestorm [Divine Storm]: This ability has been redesigned. It no longer consumes Holy Power and instead costs 5% of base mana. It shares a cooldown with Crusader Strike and hits all nearby enemies for 60% weapon damage.
      • Ability paladin veneration [Pursuit of Justice] now has an 8-second internal cooldown, shared with Blessed Life.
      • Spell holy rebuke [Rebuke] no longer initiates Auto Attack.
      • Inv sword 136 [Sanctity of Battle] now also causes Divine Storm's cooldown to be reduced by Haste effects.
      • Spell holy proclaimchampion 02 [Zealotry] no longer consumes 3 Holy Power, but still requires 3 Holy Power to use.
  • Glyphs


  • Spell holy blindingheal [Binding Heal] now provides roughly double the amount of healing.
  • Spell holy prayerofhealing02 [Prayer of Healing] has had its mana cost reduced by nearly 30%, and its base points and Spell Power coefficient increased by 20%.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Discipline
      • Spell holy devineaegis [Divine Aegis] is now always triggered by Prayer of Healing, in addition to critical heals from all other spells.
      • Spell holy hopeandgrace [Grace] has been increased to 4/8% stacking 3 times, up from 2/4% stacking.
      • Spell frost windwalkon [Inner Focus] now works with Binding Heal, but no longer works with Heal.
      • Spell holy powerwordbarrier [Power Word: Barrier] has been redesigned. It no longer acts as a shared absorb shield. Instead, all affected friendly targets take 30% reduced damage for the duration of the shield, which is now 10 seconds, down from 25 seconds.
    • Shadow
      • Spell priest shadoworbs [Shadow Orbs]: redesigned slightly. The Shadow Orbs continue to increase damage done by Mind Blast and Mind Spike and stack up to 3 times, but now when the priest casts Spell shadow unholyfrenzy [Mind Blast] or Spell priest mindspike [Mind Spike] (consuming the orbs), the priest gains a 15-second duration buff (Empowered Shadow), which increases the damage done by all Shadow periodic spells. Empowered Shadow does not stack. Mastery increases the damage bonus of Shadow Orbs and Empowered Shadow by the same amount, 10% with the base 8 Mastery, and an additional 1.25% per Mastery.
      • Spell shadow unsummonbuilding [Vampiric Embrace] healing to the caster has been reduced to 6%, down from 12% (there was a tooltip error which stated that the self-healing amount was 15%). Party members still receive 3% healing.
  • Bug Fixes
    • Ability priest darkarchangel [Dark Archangel] now correctly increases the damage done of certain abilities by 4%.


  • Ability rogue dualweild [Deadly Poison] base damage and attack power coefficient have been increased by 30%.
  • Ability rogue recuperate [Recuperate] now restores 2% of maximum health, down from 3%.
  • Ability rogue venomouswounds [Venomous Wounds] base damage and attack power coefficient have been increased by 30%.
  • Talent Specializations
  • Bug Fixes
    • Bandit's Guile now applies more consistently to all of the abilities it's supposed to modify.
    • Player guardians and temporary pets now stop attacking when a rogue uses Ability vanish [Vanish], but city guards will not.



  • Bane of Agony damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell shadow auraofdarkness [Bane of Doom] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell shadow abominationexplosion [Corruption] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell shadow deathcoil [Death Coil] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell shadow lifedrain02 [Drain Life] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell shadow haunting [Drain Soul] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell fire immolation [Immolate] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell fire burnout [Incinerate] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell shadow rainoffire [Rain of Fire] damage has been increased to be more comparable to other area-of-effect abilities.
  • Spell fire soulburn [Searing Pain] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell shadow seedofdestruction [Seed of Corruption] damage has been reduced to be more comparable to other area-of-effect abilities.
  • Shadowbolt damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Spell fire fireball02 [Soul Fire] damage has been reduced by approximately 12%.
  • Talent Specializations
  • Bug Fixes
    • Spell shadow lifedrain02 [Drain Life]: The Spell warlock soulburn [Soulburn] version of this was charging 17% of base mana instead of 12% like the normal version. This has been corrected.


  • Cleave damage has been reduced by approximately 17%.
  • Execute damage has been reduced by approximately 17%.
  • Heroic Strike damage has been reduced by approximately 17%.
  • Overpower now does 125% weapon damage, down from 150%.
  • Rend base damage has been reduced by approximately 17% and percent of weapon damage per tick lowered to 25%, from 30%.
  • Shield Block now only increases block chance by 25%, but excess block that pushes avoidance plus block to over 100% is now converted to critical block chance.
  • Slam now costs 15 rage, down from 20, and now does 125% weapon damage, down from 150%.
  • Victory Rush damage has been reduced by approximately 17%.
  • Whirlwind now does 65% weapon damage, down from 75%.
  • Talent Specializations
    • Arms
      • Mortal Strike now does 150% weapon damage, down from 185%.
      • Second Wind now heals for 2/5% of total health, down from 5/10%.
      • Strikes of Opportunity now does 100% weapon damage, down from 115%.
    • Fury
      • Blood Craze now heals for 1/2/3% of total health, down from 2.5/5/7.5%.
      • Bloodthirst damage has been reduced by approximately 17%.
      • Raging Blow now does 110% weapon damage, down from 150%.
      • Unshackled Fury now gains approximately 50% more benefit per point of Mastery.
    • Protection
      • Critical Block now grants an equal amount of block chance and critical block chance (1.5% each per point of Mastery).
      • Devastate no longer provides bonus threat.
      • Shield Slam: Contribution of attack power reduced to 60%, down from 75%, and base damage brought up so that a level 85 warrior in Heroic dungeon gear deals the same damage with no Vengeance, but Vengeance has less impact. In addition, Shield Slam no longer generates 30% bonus threat from its damage.
      • Vigilance no longer provides 3% damage reduction, but still refreshes Taunt and provides Vengeance.
  • Glyphs
    • Glyph of Bloody Healing increases the healing received from Bloodthirst by 40%, down from 100%.
    • Glyph of Intimidating Shout no longer causes targets to flee slowly, but roots them instead.
    • Glyph of Shield Wall increases damage reduction to 60%, but increases the cooldown from 2 minutes to 4 minutes (talented).
  • Bug Fixes
    • Taste for Blood should once again proc on every other tick of Rend.



  • Inv egg 02 [Mysterious Egg] now takes only 3 days to turn into a Inv egg 02 [Cracked Egg] and has a slightly greater chance of awarding the Ability mount drake proto [Reins of the Green Proto-Drake].
  • PvP set bonuses now provide 70 of stats such as Agility, Intellect, and Strength (down from 100) at 2 pieces, and 180 of these stats (down from 300) at 4 pieces.


  • Perfect Gem Cutting and Mixology have been removed as trainable skills and are instead passives profession abilities. When players reach the appropriate skill levels, they will start getting bonuses from Mixology (they must know the recipe to gain the benefit) and/or cutting perfect gems (depending on their profession, of course).
  • Alchemy
    • Alchemy recipes now require Crystal Vials. Deathwing broke all the others because he's mean (or because he didn't want alchemists to carry 5 different vials around with them).
  • Engineering
    • The Engineering Tinkering enchants will no longer provide their bonus stats, but the activated effects will stack with other enchants. In 4.0.1 the stats were there (but hidden) and are now removed.
  • Bug Fixes
    • Several epic gem transmutes that were missing from the trainer have been added back.

Bug Fixes[]

  • Certain area-of-effect abilities are no longer ignoring the area-of-effect damage cap.
  • Mobs and NPCs should no longer appear to randomly gain or lose health during combat.
  • Re-summoning pets in Battlegrounds should no longer count towards a player's total healing done.

Known Issues[]

  • Some tooltips may not reflect the most recent changes to certain abilities.
  • Worgen hunters are currently unable to learn Dual Wield.
  • The achievement Explore Tol Barad will not be possible to complete upon release of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm.


  1. ^ New patch download?. Retrieved on 2010-11-29.
  2. ^ Data patch released. Retrieved on 2010-11-29.