The prepatch for Battle for Azeroth first hit on July 17th, but the first real pieces of story weren't available until this week (more on that in a minute). The storyline is called the War of the Thorns, and it's intended to hype up the faction-vs.-faction conflict that makes up the core of BfA. Instead, it feels like it's sucking the air out of the room.
Island expeditions require groups of three players to venture to islands with randomly spawned enemies and piles of AP. The island expedition ends once they collect a certain amount of AP, and they are granted about 300 AP as a reward — unfortunately, players don’t get any of the between 6,000 and 12,000 AP they collect during the expedition. These missions can take anywhere from three to 20 minutes, and never once offer any real challenge or depth.
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.
-PvP- Completely broken for some classes and I mean broken going from both sides of the spectrum, from classes destroying everyone, to classes that can't even kill another player. It's fairly common for a weak class to lose to a powerful class even if the weak class outgears them by 50+ ilvls. That's how broken PvP is and Blizzard doesn't seem to know what to do to fix it other than do blanket damage nerfs/buffs as those are the only changes we've seen.
Since it's like a premium version and it's not modifying game files it gets by somehow. I personally hate Zygor's guides and always have, it's just personal honestly. I understand some people like his guides and have no problem paying for them but I personally hate the idea of charging someone for an addon that - as this post points out - has plenty of bugs in it. These were fixed last week and if I'm paying cash for an addon I want that addon bug free and not causing a hassle and taking my time away when I could be doing a better job without an addon at all.
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.
That lack of storytelling agency may soon change with Patch 8.1, Tides of Vengeance, which is coming to Battle for Azeroth soon. While there are plenty of fun gameplay changes that should make the expansion better, one of the most interesting additions is that of choice. In an upcoming quest, players will be able to choose whether they want to support Saurfang or Sylvanas — essentially honor or evil — in the struggle for Horde warchief.
-New dungeons- About 3/4 are fairly decent, not too long not too short, but none of them are compelling, none make me say to my friends and guildies, "Hey, let's do this instance, I love the theme and encounters." They're dull but tolerable. The other 1/4 of the dungeons just aren't fun and you will groan when you get a mythic Keystone for the Underrot, the snake temple, or Waycrest Manor. Waycrest Manor is actually one of the better dungeons, however, with the new Infested affix, Waycrest Manor suffers from many game-breaking bugs that end in the entire instance being pulled due to doors not properly working as intended.
These things happen during prepatches. There are always kinks to work out, and typically those kinks are offset by the items and experiences players receive during the prepatch events themselves. The vast list of bugfixes demonstrates just how doggedly Blizzard developers are playing whack-a-mole with in-game issues. But in the past few expansions, it's become a bit of a trade: Hang with us during the rough patch and we'll reward you with goodies and some seriously overpowered, fun gameplay, Blizzard seems to say.
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.