UPDATE 9/3/20 11:00am PT: Blizzard has updated their minimum required spec to include 100GB storage space for both SSDs and hard drives. However, they warn players that performance of your hard drive might impact Shadowland’s gaming experience.
In a surprising turn of events, Blizzard has announced that World of Warcraft Shadowlands now requires a 100GB SSD as a minimum requirement, but does this mean you can't run the game with a regular spinning hard drive? A couple of Shadowlands beta testers have reported that running the game on an HDD has not affected their gameplay or performance in any significant way. However, as this expansion is still in beta, this is subject to change.
However, it is probably a good idea to run this game on an SSD anyway (here's our list of Best SSDs). If you look at games like Call of Duty Modern Warfare that don't require an SSD but have very large storage requirements, the game is playable but you will encounter painfully long loading times. You can also possibly encounter "hitching" where the HDD is not fast enough to stream assets in real time.
Buying an SSD shouldn't be a big problem for most users – nearly all new PCs and laptops come with solid state storage. Plus, with the price of SSDs dropping exponentially over the past few years, grabbing a shiny new SSD just for Shadowlands won't break the bank for most budget gamers.
Overall, Shadowlands is looking to be the most demanding World of Warcraft expansion yet, with new Ray Tracing features already in the beta, a new graphics recommendation of GTX 1080 or RX Vega 64, and now a 100GB SSD requirement. I'm sure lots of WoW diehards will be upgrading their PCs to run this new expansion.