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Updated Jan 18, 2017 at 02:35PM EST by Don.

Added Jan 18, 2017 at 01:39PM EST by Don.

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Nostalrius was a private World of Warcraft legacy server which allowed players to experience an early version of the online game often referred to as "Vanilla WoW." Following the server's controversial shutdown in April 2016, Nostalrius developers shared data to develop the vanilla server Elysium.


In July 2010, the Nostalrius YouTube channel was launched, featuring videos on the development of the Nostalrius World of Warcraft server (shown below, left). On January 13th, 2012, the Nostalrius Facebook[2] page was created. On October 12th, 2014, developers created the /r/NostalriusBegins[3] subreddit for discussions about the developing server. On February 11th, 2015, a release trailer for the upcoming server was uploaded to YouTube (shown below, right). On February 28th, the server was officially launched under the title "Nostalrius Begins."


In April 2016, Nostalrius developers received a cease and desist notice from United States and French lawyers acting on behalf of Blizzard Entertainment, forcing the server to shutdown.[4] On April 10th, YouTuber JonTron posted a video titled "The Blizzard Rant," which condemned Blizzard for forcing Nostalrius to close their server (shown below, right). Over the next nine months, the video gained over 3.2 million views and 28,200 comments.

Elysium Project

In November 2016, Nostalrius and Elysium partnered together to work on the Elysium Project, a new vanilla World of Warcraft private server.[5] On November 11th, the /r/ElysiumProject[6] subreddit was launched for discussions about the upcoming server. On December 4th, the Elysium Project YouTube channel uploaded a trailer for the upcoming server release (shown below).

On January 7th, Elysium officially launched. On January 14th, Nostalrius Forums administrator Viper posted an announcement asking Elysium to cease using data provided by Nostalrius.[7] That day, Elysium Project Forums administrator Shenna posted an announcement titled "Our official response to Nostalrius – Elysium will prevail!", which promised to discontinue use of Nostalrius code within weeks and to wipe Nostalrius data from their servers.[8]


As the most successful unofficial World of Warcraft server, Nostalrius maintained a player base of more than 15,000 online during peak hours. Prior to the server's shutdown, over 800,000 accounts had been registered on Nostalrius.[9]

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