More time to write. A lot more time. With that, output on my end should increase. Assuming I don’t become a lazy bum. Who knows. Let’s not get into that, instead let’s talk a bit about something I was hinting at the other day, switching mains in WoW. One of the parts at least, but probably the most important part: preparation. I am sure WoW would be a very easy game for everyone if we were just able to switch who we raid with on the fly, no penalty, no time needed in the newer character. WoW is pretty easy compared to other, older MMO’s, but not that easy. There is a lot of time that goes into the cultivation of an alt, especially if you want to get them raid ready quickly. This issue is especially made more time consuming if you’re sure you want to play a new class you do not have at the current level cap, or even close. However, knowing what you’re going to do, and how to go about it can help avoid confusion down the road. Help from the people around you will greatly expedite the process, known to you or not, really doesn’t matter. Also there are a ton of great little helpers that can really ease any transition from zone to zone on that steep climb to 90. Trust me, the claim isn’t so steep. It’s important to know that this will take time. WoW is a far faster game than most MMO’s when it comes to grinding your way to the endgame, but it’s still going to take a while. How much time that will take though can be greatly mitigated by taking advantage of things such as rest XP. If you are leveling an alt, odds are you will be jumping back to your main a lot, or going out, going to work, etc. This will allow you to build up some rest XP on the character you’re leveling, and take advantage of quickly filling a few bulbs. This is easy XP, but remember, there are certain things you have to do to make sure you maximize this time. If you logout, do so in an inn, or in any capital city. Logging out in the field severely limits the rest time your character accumulates, which is just silly on your part.
With all that rest XP your character now has, what is the best way to mow through it? I have found dungeons make a great way to burn down some rest XP, especially in the Old World, as well as Outland. Queues, even for DPS tend to only be a few minutes long while leveling, and the dungeons have been re-tooled so much over time that they tend to be romps in the park. On top of this, if it is the first time in a dungeon, there are some nice quests waiting for you at the dungeon entrance, or a few feet away. These quests don’t involve much going out of your way to do things, and they give a hefty XP bonus on top of the levels you’ll be tearing through with the rampant mob murder. Lastly, the gear you get from the Helpful Goods satchel, as well as the dungeon, will no doubt help leveling in the world, making quests rewards not needed most of the time.
Gear…it’s always about gear in WoW. Gear helps, and there is a good set of gear to help you through the leveling of your alt, no matter the class or spec. Heirloom gear exists in every flavor to ease that transition. Most of it eases your leveling pain 1-80, and some 1-85. Some of these are obtained through either Honor Points and whatever the hell those marks are called you get from the Argent Ren Faire. Others you get with honor, but those are not nearly as good for PvE. Rings…through the Fishing Derby? I don’t really remember. The helmets and cloaks you get by gaining guild rep, which in today’s environment…is easy. While the armor and weapons can cost you significantly in honor points, especially so early in an expansion, most of them have been around since Wrath of the Lich King, and you may have quite a few already.
Honestly though, if you don’t have any heirloom items it’s fine. When Cataclysm happened, the 1-60 was so smoothed out that the grind is still pretty easy. Outland and Northrend’s XP requirements have been so hacked down that really getting through the content is nice and easy as well. Granted these help, but really not needed.
What is more needed than heirloom items is a decent bankroll. This is mainly for the profession game. One thing I have made the stupid mistake of doing a few times is ignoring professions while leveling. This makes a situation where eventually, you are going to have to waste a ton of time and effort simply to go back to lowbie zones and level the hell out of professions. Every moment spent picking Peacebloom on that now level 90 character is another moment not spent picking Golden Lotuses and Rainpoppy.
Even if you need to take some time out while leveling, it is good to get this stuff done on the fly. That bankroll helps whatever crafting you end up doing, making sure you can keep up. Unfortunately, a lot of materials, especially in the Old World, are kind of hard to find unless you’re willing to do some very specific farming. This can severely slow down character progress, but can be mitigated with a few gold coins and a lucky trip to the auction house. Now note, when I say a few gold coins, I mean get ready to drop some serious money, especially if you don’t want to spend the time farming.
Lastly, while levling those alts, getting them to 90, there is one simple thing you need to know. Do not use raiding guides to help you level. First of all, before level 90, you’re going to be missing quite a bit from the full class toolkit, no matter what class and spec. Second, raid rotations and such are meant for longer, sustained fights. Busy killing 20 wolves? Do not put Serpent’s Sting on it, it’s a waste of your time. Just unload with aimed/arcane shot, loot and move on.
Also remember, there are often specs that are played for leveling, but not so much in raids, usually due to lower health pools of standard quest mobs. These specs will often have some sort of built in survival tactics past their raiding brethren. Want to be a Fire Mage at 90? That’s great, but maybe look into Frost while leveling, those slows help when there is no tank around to help you not die. Now I know this is stuff most of you know. People who read WoW blogs tend to be people who have played the game. So why did I write this? Who knows, popped in my head as I was leveling the Warlock pictured above. Enjoy my evil petting zoo of Wild Imps.