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General Articles: Correspondent - Levelling in WoW

By Richard Turner on August 08, 2008

Correspondent - Levelling in WoW

World of Warcraft has been the leader in all Massive Multiplayer Online Games for a few years now. Of course there are many reasons why this has occurred, but one of the more notable ones is how the issue of levelling your character to the highest level (70 here) is accomplished. Most quests are just: run here, kill that, loot this, bring it back, but the way they are put together eliminates the incredible grind session found in many other MMORPG’s today. What Blizzard has accomplished with this game is something that is both enjoyable for the hardcore or casual player, and will continue to propel their monster of a franchise forward into the not too distant future.


Although it is implemented incredibly well into the game, the levelling system can still be semi-mind numbing. Some players, new and old, still have trouble finding the right area to quest in for their level, and some still hold onto the old misconception that levelling their new character will take them months. All that has changed now though, due to Blizzard’s implementation of a patch that was released some time ago, patch 2.3 which made it so that once you hit level 20, the amount of experience needed to level becomes decreased by 15% per level. While this doesn’t sound like much, it makes a huge difference and makes the levelling seem to fly by. Also, level 30 players can now purchase mounts, which in turn speeds up the questing/levelling cycle by allowing the player to get from point A to point B at a much faster rate. So those of you out there who never fully levelled a character, or got bored in trial, give it another go. You may like it more now.

Another thing that can take the boredom out of levelling is to completely explore the areas you’re questing in. Blizzard has built an elaborate seamless world that allows you to explore and find all sorts of hidden goodies. Many players tend to forget this and just work on solely questing or grinding to level. By exploring you gain experience and get to fully immerse yourself in the Warcraft world. However, many people will find that unimportant and burn themselves out on questing and grinding.

If you ever feel as though you’re burnt out, there are ways to break up the monotony of questing. The Battlegrounds, such as Warsong Gulch at level 10, Arathi Basin at 20, Alterac Valley at 50, and Eye of The Storm at 70 are sure to bring a new experience into your game. There are also quests you can get from each of the “bases” for these battlegrounds. It’s a good excuse to take a break from the typical repetitive questing, and you still gain experience from it. Personally, I use this as a way of breathing life back into the game when I feel questing has gone stagnant. Another thing that allows WoW to stand out from the rest, is its class system. Each class brings an individual play style to the table, and allows you to tackle the game in your most preferred fashion. Whether you prefer brutal melee battles where no one leaves without limbs missing or a tactical bolt of lightning to electrify your enemies, WoW has it all for you. The classes all have their own strengths and weaknesses, and you should try them all to find the one that suits you the best.

Class balance is a crucial game play factor in a MMORPG, and can either make or kill a game. Since launch, Blizzard has nerfed or buffed the classes over what seems to be millions of times to create their idea of a more perfect equilibrium. They’ve buffed the classes to the point that no class is very hard to solo level with, and only a few, such as mage, would pose a slight disadvantage to the other classes due to their sheer dependency on mana for survivability. The best class choices for a newcomer to the game would have to be rogue and hunter, for their easy playability and their extremely high DPS output. Yet, it all boils down to what your goal is when coming into the game.

The talent trees for the classes in WoW all serve their own unique purpose. Some builds are set up for leveling, some raiding, and some for PvP. What I’ve done is compiled the leveling builds in order to help you, the reader, level. Of course, all builds are subject to change and everyone should try their own.

These builds are all designed to make it easier for the player to level, and have been proven to work.

While leveling, many players also encounter what is called the “awkward levels.” These are levels that require you to run back and forth between multiple zones, and attempt to find quests in order to level. For example, as a Horde character, once you finish the Shimmering Flats circuit in Thousand Needles, you are forced to run between Stranglethorn Vale, Tarren Mill, and the Arathi Highlands. All of which are very spread apart from another, creating an incredible amount of time wasted on merely running. For Horde, these levels usually begin anywhere around level 32 and do not cease till somewhere around level 38. For Alliance, they range anywhere from level 26 till level 41.

Another thing that can help you through these awkward levels would be Jame’s Leveling Guide (All rights belong to Jame and Wowpro, I in no way have any affiliation outside of using the guide myself.) Jame has wrote both a Horde and an Alliance version of his leveling guide, each with circuits and maps to help you level your fastest. These guys have saved me countless hours on leveling. You can access the Horde leveling guide here, and the Alliance one here. Two add-ons that can greatly increase your leveling efficiency as well would be LightHeaded, which can be found here, and TomTom, which can be found here. Once again, I had nothing to do with either of those add-ons, or the guides, I merely found them to be invaluable resources in the quest to reach level 70.

While this article was mostly geared towards newer players, I hope those of you who are seasoned found some bit of usefulness out of it. Thanks for reading, stay classy.

Richard Turner / I live in the North Georgia mountains and am a music education major at NGCSU.