When is the start of World of Warcraft: Shadowlands testing? Well, on a small scale it seems to have already happened, since the latest encrypted alpha build is itself an alpha build. Of course, it’s still all encrypted, so no one knows precisely when any of the information will start being publicly available or players will be getting brought in on testing, but the groundwork is there. The Vendor server has also updated, which throughout the current expansion has usually occurred a few weeks before the test server opened.
And release? That’s still much more opaque, but reader speculation on the subject notes that based on the current pattern of updates, the legendary cloak won’t update to 125 resistance until September 8th. That rules out anything earlier than September 15th for the pre-patch, and based on assumptions of the pattern remaining fixed and a four-week pre-patch period, October 13th looks like the earliest reasonable date. It’s all based on some assumptions rather than facts, but it does tend to support the idea that this expansion will be out later in the year than its two predecessors.