There are also a number of different online tools you can use to make yourself a better World of Warcraft player—and to help you decide what to focus on. Wowhead has a great Attunement Tool that shows you how close you are to unlocking significant milestones in the game, like unlocking new allied races, earning reputations with key factions (which will ultimately help you unlock faster mount speed and other goodies in the game’s expansion), and how far along you are in your dungeons and raids.
Today, I finally found out what the real problem was. I have always had the "Enable Zone Map" feature off, but noticed that I had "Enable Auto Zoom" still enabled. I assumed if you turned the map off, the auto zoom would just automatically not do anything. Turns out, every time I moved, the auto zoom was still collecting information and 'zooming' a map that didn't exist. I've turned it off now and my game is perfect - not a single slowdown. The difference is dramatic.
At the same time, a stat "squish" meant that players' gear level, health and damage were drastically reduced. Monsters' stats were similarly clobbered, though predictably, some lesser-known abilities immediately started one-shotting players. (On the beta servers, a simple toy allowed players to kill each other with one blow, with amusing results; but even on live servers, those bugs were legion.)
Let’s start with the basics. At its core, World of Warcraft is a saga that centers on two warring factions: the aforementioned Horde and Alliance. They’ve been fighting each other since the days of MS-DOS, locked a never-ending war—save for those rare moments where they attempt to team up to counter a greater threat—that has taken them across continents, into space, and through time.
Some people have made arguments that quest blues can sometimes be more powerful than heirlooms, especially with sockets. I'm not convinced. The simple fact that you never have to even look at quest rewards will save a non-insignificant amount of time over the course of leveling. Also of consideration is the value of enchanted gear never having to be re-enchanted.
Groups are constantly forming in the group finder to go battle the enemy faction. If you’re more of a lone wolf, you can still stalk around the world looking for enemy players. You’re bound to find some. World quests with Warmode on also spark some seriously interesting interactions, especially ones for neutral factions like the Champions of Azeroth.
And... that was it. New NPCs offered a glimpse of some truly amazing armor and weapons, none of which are currently available to players (and datamining suggests it may be a while, if ever, before they are.) There were no new appearances for players to farm, no items or pets or toys or titles to obtain, no achievements to complete. There was no repeatable, truly farmable content.
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.
":" - Any time a step ends in a ":" instead of a "." means that the next step is part of the current step you are on. This generally means the next step should be done while working on the current step. This means every "start working on" or "continue working on" will end in a ":". But this is used with other occasions as well, so keep this in mind.
Just like player item levels, the game's professions have become pretty bloated over time. Blizzard has made some updates to the leveling process before but Battle for Azeroth features a skill squish that should smooth things out considerably. Instead of having to level hundreds of points before you can start crafting Battle for Azeroth items, each expansion will have its own separate skill tier. In other words, you can start crafting Battle for Azeroth content right away, while the gear and items from other expansions will each feature their own separate counters. Your first Battle for Azeroth item will put you at 1/150 on the counter for the new expansion, no more grinding needed.
XP Potions: The Elixir of Rapid Mind and Elixir of Ancient Knowledge no longer drop. They can be bought on the AH still but are way to expensive for it to be worth it. The Excess Potion of Accelerated learning is available from your garrison quartermaster but only works for level 91 to 99. As of Patch 8.1 you can also buy the 10% XP Potion Draught of Ten Lands.