Players quickly took to Reddit last week, as well as reaching out to Wowhead, to speculate on these NPCs with long cast times. As the Shadowlands pre-patch date is unknown, players were eager to assume the cultists were predicting the release date!
The duration of Fel Channeling has lined up with the release of Antorus, start of 7.3.5 and Seething Shore battleground, and start of BFA beta. Their most-recent cast ended September 16, which lined up with the Shadowland background download. However, we also have examples of other NPCs with long casting times who didn’t predict anything.
While speculation can be fun, there’s a technical explanation why the Xorothian Cultists have long cast times and don’t really predict anything. There are still some theories pointing to October 6th, such as the end-of-season PvP blog usually occurring two weeks before the pre-patch, but it looks like the cultists shouldn’t be used as actual evidence.