First, a bit of context: I've been playing the game since six months before it was originally released, and I make no apologies about liking it. It's getting long in the tooth, as with all games that have been on the market for 14 years, but Blizzard seems committed to continuous improvement. The last expansion, Legion, was the best the company had ever released. (Stop arguing, Wrath of the Lich King fan boys. It's true and you know it.)
These stat priorities help to get a rough idea of what gear to go for, but the most important thing to get as soon as possible is your stat weights. Stat weights help you zero in on which stat is the most effective at increasing your healing. However, healers have no grand simulator, as there are a lot more variables that can affect your overall performance than there are for DPS specs. In light of that, healers use fight analysis tools like WoWAnalyzer and the Teachings of the Red Crane spreadsheet that takes logs from WarcraftLogs and gives you accurate weights that would improve your output.
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.
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.
In World of Warcraft®: Battle for Azeroth™, the seventh expansion to Blizzard Entertainment’s acclaimed massively multiplayer online role-playing game, the fall of the Burning Legion sets off a series of disastrous incidents that reignites the conflict at the heart of the Warcraft® saga. As a new age of warfare begins, Azeroth’s heroes must set out on a journey to recruit new allies, race to claim the world’s mightiest resources in order to turn the tides of war, and fight on several fronts to determine whether the Horde or Alliance will lead Azeroth into its uncertain future.
It’s a good thing that the previous expansion, Legion, was the best in the game’s history because Battle for Azeroth is coasting on its success. The major class redesigns that happened then remain in effect (though some are a little worse, and some a little better), and the combination of World Quests and Mythic+ dungeons means there’s always something to do, no matter your skill level or how long you can play.
Some quests in my guide are marked as "SKIP" and colored in red. These quests are simply either too hard to solo or not worth the XP/time and are skipped. My guide will only list SKIPPED quests if the quest is a direct follow up after completing a quest, not one that you have to click the NPC again to get it. If you hover over the skipped quests, it will give info on why it is skipped in the guide (unless that info is already listed directly in the guide text).
As always, I will monitor and update this guide as new information comes in. If I've gotten anything glaringly and completely wrong, just tell me with as much data as possible. The idea is to find the fastest possible leveling method, NOT to argue about how good or bad individuals are. If you have hard data, post it! If you have an idea, let the thread know so we can test it!
War Mode, which allows players on PvE realms to turn on PvP combat and PvP realm players to turn it off, launched--offering a fairly measly 10% extra experience to leveling players for the privilege of getting ganked by max-level characters, or 10% increased world quest rewards for level-capped characters. For many players, that's not much an enticement.
I do not recommend going for TBC, although I remember Hellfire peninsula to be decent, everything else is rather slow. Instead go for WotLK, Borean Thundra gets you levelled very fast, and then you can head straight for Icecrown at 67, which is also insanely fast, although admittedly has a few elite quests. You can go to Sholazar Basin alternatively. 2 zones should get you 60-80 no problem.