If you’ve seen or heard people getting excited for World of Warcraft because it’s “getting back to its roots,” thanks to a renewed focus on the shared hatred between the game’s two major factions—Horde and Alliance—in its new Battle for Azeroth expansion, maybe you’re tempted to sign up and give the game a whirl. Or, if you haven’t played in years, perhaps you’re curious to see what’s changed.
Dugi and Zygor both had their guides updated before Mist of Pandaria was released and both guides are kept updated with all the patches and changes to the game. Dugi is way faster with updates and has a lot more. Zygor seems to hold out and then do a big update. With new content such as guides etc, Dugi is definitely leading the way with Zygor usually many months behind. Zygor now offers the same number of guides as Dugi but it took them a long time to catch up.
To give you some perspective I leveled both a LF Ret Paladin and BE Rogue (so one started from level 20 and the other from level 1). I focused on getting the achievements I was missing for the Loremaster, so not the most efficient route by any means. I was using full enchanted heirlooms (minus the ring) and the WoW-Pro addon though, as well as having War Mode turned on all the way.
The bones of Mythic+ are fairly simple, but it’s that simplicity that makes it Battle for Azeroth’s most rewarding mode. It’s fun, generally only takes about 40 minutes per dungeon and allows small groups of players to push themselves exactly as hard as they’d like. Battle for Azeroth’s dungeons are extremely well-designed and consistently entertaining, even after doing some of them 20-plus times, which makes the challenge of Mythic+ a great way to keep people playing.
Still, it’s terrible to see the new expansion fail so spectacularly at iterating on Legion’s success. It’s hard to believe the two expansions came from the same company. Legion made you feel powerful and unique. Battle for Azeroth grinds at you by taking away as much as it gives. Sure, you can have a shiny toy. Sometimes. If you don’t get too carried away.
Azeroth paid a terrible price to end the apocalyptic march of the Legion’s crusade—but even as the world’s wounds are tended, it is the shattered trust between the Alliance and Horde that may prove hardest to mend. As the fires of war continue to roar, take the battle to both new and familiar lands with the Tides of Vengeance update, and join your allies to champion your faction’s cause.
If you just care about unlocking the ability to fly in the new expansion, and you should, the site’s Pathfinder tool is a must-bookmark. Its Character Planner is also incredibly useful for getting a sense of what you could (or should) do next, based on your recent activity, the gear you’re wearing (and would like to upgrade), achivements you’re close to unlocking, et cetera. If you want a simpler guide, the site also has a great list of all the activities you should be doing each day and week in Battle for Azeroth.
I like his recommendations 2 level 1-20 zones to get to 20, then do all the 2nd zones since they are designed for walking (Horde: Northern Barrens, Silverpine Forest, Ghostlands, Azshara, & Hillsbrad Foothills if you need a little more. Alliance: Westfall, Loch Modan, Darkshore, Bloodmyst Isle, and if you need a little more Redridge Mtns, or Duskwood). Don't even bother with the higher level areas, too spread out. Finishing up a Monk now and I had done all these zones before the update, the running between quest and the 50% experience cap is driving me crazy.
I personally wouldn't recommend Bloodmyst Isle. There's a ton of quests but a lot of those quests have absolutely horrible drop rates on their items. A lot of the quest mobs also have very slow and/or spread out spawns so if there's other people there you're gonna be waiting for respawns or spending a lot of time traveling between spawn areas quite a bit. Overall it's just an incredibly slow zone as far as EXP goes.
Meanwhile, in Zandalar, the Horde seeks to earn the trust of King Rastakhan so they can use his legendary Golden Fleet against the Alliance. To this end, they assist Rastakhan and his court in dealing with local threats in Zuldazar, fight maniacal Blood Trolls in Nazmir, and face off with serpentine Old God cultists in Vol'dun. Throughout their journey, the Horde gradually learns about an eldricth being known as G'huun, an artificial Old God accidentally created by the Titans and the patron deity of the Blood Trolls. The Blood Trolls and the Faithless Sethekk seek to free G'huun from his prison of Uldir so they can use him to rule Azeroth, and to this end they resurrect G'huun's champion, the C'thrax Mythrax, to destroy Uldir's seal. Rastakhan's own chief adviser, the prophet Zul, is revealed to be the Blood Trolls' secret leader and launches an armed revolt against Rastakhan. With the Horde champions' help, Rastakhan is able to defeat Zul and his forces, but not before Mythrax destroys Uldir's seal.
These guides are completely automated and work in-game, so you can see step-by-step instructions as you play. The guides automatically move to a new step as you complete the quests. You are told where to go i.e. the questgivers for accepting and turning in quests along with where and how to complete the quests. Zygor has more steps and details, which would be more suited to beginners. Dugi condenses the info into fewer steps, but still has all the necessary questing info.
I highly recommend actually staying in the 20-60 range zones until you ding 62. The reason for this is that despite getting a slight penalty in experience for being over-level, the advantage of having flight will more than offset this. That, and WOTLK and TBC zones are the slowest part of the leveling process. Minimizing your time there as much as possible is worthwhile.
Heirlooms: Heirlooms are the best source of bonus XP for leveling. All slots can be gotten pretty easily now, except the rings. The time you need to spend to get the rings if you haven’t gotten a level 3 shipyard in WoW is way too long, so getting the rings is generally not worth it. Having all your heirloom gear will boost XP by 55%. Generally, you want heirloom gear with crit on for leveling as you want to kill mobs in a few hits as possible
Isle of Quel'Danas: Special mention. At lvl 70 you can start doing the dailies here. Despite not being able to fly, the quest density is VERY high. I recommend hitting this every reset if you spend more than 24 hours REAL time(not /played)in the 70-80 level range. In fact, if you're doing a monk and only logging in once each day anyway, IQD WILL be your best exp/h for this level range.
Darkmoon Faire: The Darkmoon Faire comes around once a month and provides two ways of bonus XP. You can ride the carousel to get the “Whee!” buff (10% bonus XP for one hour). You can also get the Darkmoon Top Hat by playing a few games, which gives you 10% bonus XP but only works during the Darkmoon Faire. Both of these are generally not worth it for the most part, as you spend more time running to get the buff than you gain in XP when leveling.
The idea of the expansion came up after the heroes of Azeroth dealt with so much external threats like the Burning Legion. In their own words, "so when we talk about what's the biggest threat in this world, is it the titan or is it the dwarf paladin that put a hammer in that titan's head"? As such, the enemy (at least during the early parts of the scenario) will be the opposite faction, a "vast army of world-destroying forces".
If you’re a returning player, consider paying for a month’s worth of playing time—a mere $15—and using the game’s newer Class Trials to see if you still have that spark for higher-level play. While you can also go the “Starter Edition” route for a free, limited romp through Azeroth, you might need a little more than the newbie zones to help you decide whether you want to play through the game’s latest expansion.
You can earn a decent amount of XP by doing Herbalism or mining. Any zone works but I prefer Sholazar Basin as a lot of the mobs are not aggressive and the mobs are spread out so you will find a lot of herbs and ore that you don’t have to fight for. It is possible to make about a level every hour by doing this, or a level every 30-40 minutes with rest XP.
Spoiler: A lot has changed. It can feel daunting to jump into a huge world of which you know very little, and World of Warcraft is gigantic. You will feel overwhelmed if you just rush in. As a returning player who used to write for the freakin’ World of Warcraft magazine (RIP), even I find it hard to figure out exactly where to get started adventuring if I haven’t played the game for a while.
Heart of Azeroth: Our world is direly wounded. Players will be summoned via Magni Bronzebeard to Azeroth herself. She will gift players with a medallion called the [Heart of Azeroth]. Her life essence seeps from the world in the form of [Azerite]. When players wearing the medallion come in contact with azerite, this sought after resource becomes a source of power for selected pieces of armor, providing players a way to level them up. This feature replaces the artifact system of World of Warcraft: Legion. Currently the plan of development is to limit the upgrade system to 3 pieces of armor. Players will be able to choose the stats they want to better fit their play-style.
New to Patch 8.1 is a new leveling flask called the Draught of Ten Lands which increases all primary and secondary stats by 20 and experience gained by 10%. This effect lasts for one hour and persists through death, similar to other battle flasks. This item can be purchased using a new Patch 8.1 currency called 7th Legion Service Medal or Honorbound Service Medal which can be earned doing the new incursions and Warfront activities. Simple earn these medals on your main character, purchase the flasks, and send them to your other characters. The cost is 10 of the medals.
The expansion brings a major change to the PvP ruleset on each realm. Every realm by default only allows players to attack NPCs in the open world; players who wish to engage in world PvP now have a setting called "War Mode" that can only be toggled on or off in their faction's capital city (i.e. Stormwind for the Alliance and Orgrimmar for the Horde). While in War Mode, players have access to new talents and abilities, as well as a slightly accelerated rate of XP gain. Characters with War Mode activated are only able to see other players with War Mode, unless in their own capital cities.
Currently, it is believed that the War Mode rewards will change depending on which faction is more heavily prevalent with War Mode activated. The Horde have typically had more participating in War Mode, so the reward has been increased for the Alliance to incentivize more participation in War Mode. These rewards could potentially be increased to both the Horde and Alliance to incentivize both factions to higher amounts of War Mode participation.
After completing your island expedition and second foothold, head back out to your third and final zone to quest in. Note that any legendaries you were using to level have become inactive and are merely stat sticks now. Feel free to replace them with quest gear as you obtain it. Before heading out, feel free to send your three champions out on new missions!
The Horde levels 50-60 guide has been rewritten and revamped. My 1-60 Horde leveling guide is now completely updated for the 1.12 Drums of War patch. As you can see it is about 15% larger than the 40-50 guide (single largest guide page yet). There is also a lot of route changes. I moved the entire Silithus section from level 55 to level 58, which allowed me to include a lot more quests for that zone. There is also a lot of other improvement to the route, including adding a lot more quests into the guide, mostly from Moonglade, Silithus and Eastern Plaguelands. This will make the final level 59 grind much shorter.
Excess Potion of Accelerated Learning: Acquired in your Garrison (part of the Warlords of Draenor expansion), this gives you a 20-percent bonus to experience from killing monsters and finishing quests. It lasts one hour, but you can buy it multiple times and use it back-to-back. Alliance players buy it from Sergeant Crowler, horde players buy it from Sergeant Grimjaw. Does not work above level 99.
This top-end difficulty was missing entirely from Legion’s first raid, Emerald Nightmare, which was cleared by top guilds in around 11 hours. Meanwhile the first guild to clear Uldir’s hardest difficulty, Mythic, spent somewhere around 70 hours attempting to kill the raid’s eight bosses. Even after all that time, the guild, Method, still had members say they loved the raid, and that it was one of their favorite in recent memory.
For Alliance it's Lok'Modan, Redridge, Darkshore, Felwood, Stranglethorn (both parts), Plaguelands. Somewhere between 3 - 3.5 of these get you to 60 in like a 16 hours /played, if you queue for dungeons at the same time. I recommend dropping everything at 45 and going to Darkshore-Felwood if you didn't do them yet - they are literally the fastest levelling zones in the game right now, maybe only trumped by Silverpine.
It's not just the publishers, it's also impatient gamers who (in the main) can't allow any deviation from when they want to see the game published - even when devs postpone the release due to their belief that it's not ready.Some people just don't want to wait - either for the money to start rolling in or to start playing a game they've managed to over hype in their own minds.
Dugi’s leveling guide is the leveling addon I’ve always used to level as fast as possible. It will show you where to go and what to do in-game, speeding up the leveling process. This is optional though, as the game already does a pretty good job at showing you where to go at all times. The addon does, however, come with a couple of other nice features and perks.
Elixirs serve the same purpose as Flasks, but the buff expires if you die. You'll only use these between 1-70, generally speaking, until you can start buying Flasks which persist through death. Try not to die, and carry extras just in case. If you can't find an Elixir with the stat you want, look under scrolls, since they count as battle or guardian buffs as well.
If you need the abridged version, because you’d rather spend an hour in a game than hearing someone talk about a game, you can also check out the excellent “New & Returning Player Guides” series from YouTuber (and World of Warcraft expert) Bellular. And you probably even skip the bits about ”how to purchase” or “how to install” the game, saving you even more time for new World of Warcraft adventures:
As for the classes themselves, they almost all play like slower and slightly less interesting versions of their Legion counterparts. This is thanks in large part to the loss of one ability from each class that came along with Legion’s own AP dumping system: the artifact weapon, which added a unique ability to every spec in the game. The loss of these abilities left most classes feeling frustrating and incomplete, and though Azerite gear was supposed to be the replacement, it missed the mark completely. There will always be one Azerite trait that reigns supreme for each spec, meaning that the frustration of that particular loop will be unavoidable as long as the system is in the game.
Each of those modes existed long before this latest expansion; raiding is a basic concept in MMOs, and Mythic+ was added in World of Warcraft’s last expansion. The problems with Battle for Azeroth’s endgame come from the systems it adds, which most often artificially gate progress where most of the fun can be found. If raids and Mythic+ are the carrot, we’re about to talk about the stick.
On March 23, 2018, Zygor Guides announced that they would end support for their ESO guide. Later, via answers given on the forums, they confirmed they would not add a leveling guide for Summerset. Their guide is Public Domain with Zygor's blessing for the community to create guides. So I took it upon myself to create a Summerset guide for the ESO community.