Smoke ’em if you’ve got ’em

I’ve been gallivanting through a gallimaufry of gaming goals recently, but this Bear cannot get it in gear from group content alone.

There have to be soloing goals to grip me as well, y’know?

At this point in the expansion lull, what do you do? Just keep scouting Archaeology sites to get those last nine rares? Start farming zones for Black Kitty Cats?

I’ve frogflailed around for a focus and finally found a new goal to pursue; playing classes to 85 that I’ve never played before!

yeah, yeah, I know, stop me if you’ve heard this one. I say this same thing, what? Oh yeah, just every damn expansion at this point, that’s all.

I have to admit, I’m a naughty polyalterous player. I start ’em and dump ’em, over and over. Sometimes after making expensive bags and leveling crafting professions, too!

I’ve never played a Mage or a Warlock to max level, any max level

I did get a Warlock to level 52 once. Then I killed him.

It was a Warlock though, so, hey… he wasn’t destined for a happy, carefree existence anyway, right? That whole “impending doom, soul going to hell when I die” thing must be a real drag at parties.

You’d think, with all the pressure weighing them down, Warlocks in general would have a bad enough drinking problem to keep a bar in business all by themse – oh, wait. Right. Sorry.

I look at my alt record, and I feel like I should apologize or something.

The Warlock and Mage classes sound so cool in theory, but when the paws hit the dirt I’m either into something tearing and clawing, or I’m sending my furry minion in as my slaughtering surrogate.

Or, you know, I’m being all lazy and casting the occasional heal while reading the latest book by Stephen Hunter or Lee Child.
Hey! Don’t complain about the heals you’re not getting, I can dial this all the way down to zero.

My personal healing motto is, “Don’t be mad at the heals you don’t get, be grateful for the ones you do.”

I think LFR taught me that, but that’s a motto I would proudly carry into a pen and paper roleplaying D&D group anytime.

So, leveling new classes to 85, but one slot and two classes, which to level, which to level.

It’s not like there’s some kind of RIVALRY or something between Mages and Warlocks, right? No reason one should feel slighted if I pick the other?

No reason at all.

With a known release date for the expansion, my new soloing goal is to take my long lost, lonely and forlorn Mage and try to level that sucker all the way to max and do some LFR before Pandamonium reigns supreme across Azeroth.

Gotta change it up a little, though.

Every other time I’ve leveled a Mage, I’ve gone Frost.

This time, against all logic and in abandonment of pet pal principles, I’ve gone FIRE, baby.

As of last night, I’m at level 62 and, er, burning my way through the Hellfire Peninsula. Hey, they can’t all be winners. Or most. Or some.

Here is where I could really use your help.

I’m really enjoying Fire spec. I’m loving blowing up ALL the things. I like the old school Hunter feel of being able to kite by using Scorch on the run, Fire Blasting with the stun, and then on a Pyroblast! proc doing a spin jump shoot behind Blink on the dismount.

Now if only I could drop two chain traps. Oh, wait. Frost Nova. Sorry, forgot.

I’m enjoying Fire, I LOVE the ‘riding a lucky streak high roller’ feel that reminds me fondly of the early days of Enhancement Shaman leveling with Wirt’s Leg and twin Windfury procs.

But I’m so dreadfully tired of leveling in Outlands.

Please, PLEASE can someone recommend an unusual leveling path through Outlands to get to Northrend?

Normally I do Hellfire until I’m high enough level to hit Erebor in Zangarmarsh, do rep quests for the Broken in Erebor, then jump straight to Nagrand to the end of my Outlands time.

I’m afraid I’ve gone to the Nagrand well one too many time. I’m truly afraid that if I go just one more time, I’m going to crack.

Any ideas?

32 thoughts on “Smoke ’em if you’ve got ’em

  1. Battlegrounds…
    The level 60 and then level 70 PvP gear rocks, you queue while questing, have 15-30 minutes of something different and then buy nice gear.
    But then, I would say BGs…


  2. Hello, my name is Dragon, and I don’t mind HFP. I know I’m an outsider.
    That being said, if you dislike those zones:
    – get rested
    – Wear heirloom items and be in a guild with the bonus XP thing
    – Archaeology and mine / herb (get the gatherer enchant!) while being in LFG and/or BG queue (can you be in both?)
    – Trade chores with your family members. “Run me through dungeons and I’ll do the trash/dishes” 🙂

    Sorry, that’s about all that I can suggest. I leveled a Lock through PvP to 85 (except for open-the-portal-quests) and dungeoned a Disco-priestess. All other 6 85s got the questing treatment – and I leveled my wife’s hunter for her as well. Apparently I don’t mind getting in the zone and grinding away 😉


  3. I, too, -loathe- HFP. I’m also guilty of deleting alts that I get tired or bored of. Every few months, I think I need to “clean house” and delete a few, unless I feel attached to them. I’ve been leveling a new batch of alts, seeing as my main’s guild has gone on hiatus from raiding until we’ve gotten level 90 in MOP. Boom/resto druid (69), Ret/holy paladin (77), Unholy/frost DK (77) and ANOTHER Bear/cat (69). All but the bear/cat are on a different realm from my “home” one, so no heirlooms for them.

    -Boomkin: Winterspring to 59, Blasted lands to 61, HFP to 62, Zangar to 65, Blade’s edge to 68. At this point, AV weekend happened, so I got nearly 2 levels healing through that.

    -Pally: Silithis to 60; and because I hate HFP that much, Blasted lands to 61; HFP for one level, Terrokar to 65, spammed 65 to 69 in LFD as heals, quested in B.Tundra and D.Blight until 77 in between dungeons. I’ve never gotten a paladin this high before and I find I enjoy holy spec the most.

    -DK: I went through old world gathering mats to level crafting while spamming dungeons until 62 or so, did HFP for gear quests, farmed in Terrokar while LFD spamming, went to Netherstorm as soon as I was able and savored every single quest I could there. I actually hit 72 in Nagrand.. but I was farming Mag’har rep (wanted the colbalt talbucks badly!) while queued for BC heroic dungeons. Did 72 to 77 almost all in AV. I’ve found I really enjoy playing Frost in BGs.. when I’m not in the graveyard waiting to respawn. Otherwise, I’m hanging out with my buddy, Timmy the Wonder Ghoul, and questing. This is my first DK to break the 70 barrier and NOT get deleted! The chances of her getting to 80 before MoP are very high.

    -Bear/cat: This is my dirty, rotten, spoiled and twinked beyond all reason pet alt. Every heirloom that is beneficial to a bear or cat spec is on that character. When on this toon, I ask myself this: Do I want to eat monster face (tank a dungeon) or nom on other players (pvp as cat)? Whichever I feel like, I do. She does not quest, unless it is in a dungeon.


  4. I’m currently levelling a Paladin through all the new content, and with full heirlooms and two gathering professions I’m doing well leveling in the old world even post 60. I’m currently about to ding 62, and I’m questing in Winterspring. Just gather as you ride, and you get xp for handing in gray quests just as you would were they green. And it’s fun!


  5. I really like the revamped Winterspring, I think it’s worth questing through if you want to follow the story. If you haven’t done Felwood yet, perhaps try Felwood-Winterspring and see just how much Timbermaw rep you can get without really trying, then moan and complain about how hard it used to be?


  6. I hate to say it but I mainly used lfg to level ( and got my hubby to play for me 😛 ) only went to areas to level my profs 🙂


  7. Hold off on going to hellfire.
    To be a little different, try running ALL the Vanilla 60 Instances (BRD Upper city, LBRS/UBRS) as well as those forgotten zones like Winterspring or Silthius… Theres some fantastic content out there.

    And like what Tsudrats says, pick content you haven’t done in a while – and this may include levelling via BG’s or spamming LFD.

    Elli (no longer retired!)


  8. Recently did the whole of Blade’s Edge for the first time. Really enjoyed it. Would run it again.

    My recommendation is to do an entire zone. Folow the story, do the instances, don’t jump around. Much more satisfying.


  9. My general rule of altoholic leveling (the condition not the addon) is to pick regions I’ve not run for a while even if it feels a bit insane. This time round I’m camping Silithus until I’ve cleared the place of quests as it’s something I’ve never actually managed to do before I go bouncing off to Outlands. You could also sit in Azeroth and just lfd until you can go to Northrend. I had a guildie who lfd’ed from 60 to 80. A bit of a pain come raiding at the time as he had no flight paths to speak of and needed summons half the time.

    Not sure I could do those instances that much.


    • Seems like you get at least one flight path per zone automatically now. May not have all of them, or the best placed one, but at least you can get there. I once dragged someone around half of Kalimdor getting flight paths… he’d gotten to 80 by the recruit a friend levels, and didn’t even have gear… was still in the stuff you start with.


  10. Really though, the joy of fire in Outland is AoE dps in instances. You have about 5-6 AoE abilities. Just keep your ice block at the ready, give those DK tanks a few seconds head start, then explode your way to the top of the meters, and probably pull aggro.

    The only thing more fun than firemage AoE is an engineering firemage. Is that exploding sheep gratuitous? Sure. But it’s always funny. Make an enormous stack of them for appropriate occasions.


  11. Blades edge with flight is a different experience. Don’t do terokkar – it is heinously disjointed. Do do ring of blood. Avoid shadow moon – quests take too long for the payoff. Area 52 though is a pretty solid hub.


  12. Have you done Blade’s Edge at all since originally visiting it on a toon that couldn’t fly? It’s substantially less painful when you can fly around instead of running.


  13. When leveling my rogue recently I did half of hellfire before heading to northrend! Worked like a charm. Oh the xp? That came from bgs – love leveling that way it is a bit slower but ended up with capped honor and justice points when I hit 85.

    That’d certainly be different for you!


  14. Heh, thats the exact same leveling path I usually use.

    Heres some alternatives : Level on archealogy instead – Great exp and a decent way to level, very useful for an alternative to outlands and northrend. Very useful if your an alchemist as well.

    In outland: Hit terrokar at 62, then blades edge. goes VERY smooth up till 68.

    Dungeon running: Run each outland dungeon twice and you can really skip the entire outland zones as well.


  15. Before she fell into the 45-60 blah valley, I leveled my warlock entirely through LFG. Started at level 17 just because I wanted to do something other than questing, and got three levels in one dungeon. (full heirlooms) I go with a combination of what people above have said; if you can get BabyBear to drag you through Ramparts you should get some decent XP reasonably quickly, and when he’s not available, LFG may work.

    Lower level LFG seems to be less filled with asshats… guess it’s not just cream that floats to the top. I went from ~20 to 35 with one group, just doing (the same) dungeon after dungeon, because we fit well together and were having loads of fun. Was like being in a good guild. You screw up and people laugh and try again, rather than ZOMGUSUK!


  16. Terrokar”s Forest and Blade’s Edge, while being in LFG queue.
    Stop when rested XP is gone.

    Use aspirin as required.



  17. I hate Hellfire. hate hate hate hate hate. As in truly dislike.

    Being a die-hard healer-alt fanatic, I tend to level via dungeon runs, but man, the Outland dungeons LFG are too brutal for me to face. I leveled one alt through there last year, and never again. Tank to dickhead masquerading as a tank ratio was about 24:1. Where were you when I needed you BBB?

    So, these days I tend to keep leveling to 61 in one of the classic zones, then jump into Zanger – my all-time favourite zone. I do as much of Zanger as I find still interesting, then a mix of Terrokar Forest, Nagrand, and Blade’s Edge til I hit 68, then off to Northrend and into the face-roll LFG there.

    Remember too, you can always jump into PVP to level through a zone you just cannot face one more time.



  18. Try some path you have not done before. Normally I do Hellfire, Zanga, then Nagrand and by the end of that I am ready for Outland. Last guy I switched it up and went Bladewhatever mountains which was different.

    I am having such a problem figuring out what to solo.

    I have goals and stuff but they are boring me right now. I would level another character except I have all 10 slots full.

    Funny you mentioned archeology because I started doing some of that this morning for pets. I also want to level some alts easy reputations for the United Nations achievement for my guild. I would love someone else to fish up 10k fishies for my guild too but that’s another story. I think I would rather delete my character than fish that much.

    I have been trying to get that dumb fox kit.

    Also the deepholm dragon.

    I have been doing the raid group with you guys. Loved it last Sunday. That is only one day a week though. It gets me achievements I have on none of my characters which is awesome. I love the shinies.

    I want to finish my Hydroxian Waterlords rep grind… but 1k per run… till exalted. UG! I am not sure I can do that. Why did they have to go and make the trash mobs not give experience after revered. Blah.

    I could attack some of my other reps but I dunno. I am kind of tired of the grind at this point.

    Making some gold before MoP but kind of bored of that.

    I gotta say MoP can not come soon enough.


  19. If you haven’t over-played the 55-60 content, I’d recommend staying in Azeroth until 60. Then you can go straight to Zangarmarsh (or hellfire if you really really want). After a couple levels there you could go to blade’s edge or south to Terokkar. Then the final outland levels can be done in the same way as BC, Shadowmoon or Netherstorm.

    Northrend is similar, stay in outland until 70. It lets you get through the earlier zones a lot quicker (if you’re not sick of Shadowmoon/Netherstorm by then of course)

    If you don’t entirely hate the 5-mans yet, I suggest doing each one at least once to do the quests, the experience gain is too high to pass up. Plus if you’re on a mage, you’ll get plenty of gear. You, a healer, and 3 deathknights in every run!


  20. The last alt I leveled through there (back in Wrath) just tore through LFD. I don’t know what the queue times are like now, but I remember it not taking long at all to get into Northrend.


  21. When I was dual boxing I would take my level 85 and run through the hellfire instances for my lowbie. Tearing through ramparts would take like 5 minutes and would give a decent amount of xp for my level 60. The great thing was you could park the low level guy at the door and just run through the whole instance killing stuff on the higher level guy. Lather, rinse, repeat. As I started getting higher level I would add Blood furnace in there etc. Once I hit 65 I would add the heroic versions of the instances for more xp and some better loot. You would be amazed at how fast you can level to 68 doing this although it can get boring… once I hit 68 I would head to Northrend.


  22. Also, try this addon called Xtolevel – it shows you how many quests, kills, bgs, instances you need to ding and based on your exp/hour rate, an ETA to your next ding. Keeps me sane while leveling – that little finish line to aim for. 🙂


    • This. HFP is unfortunately unmissable, although you could try “alternative ways” to gain XP?

      I would have recommended loitering in the Plaguelands. Suboptimal XP but good for nostalgia. Not sure what Cataclysm did up there though.


  23. thinking about getting back into the game I took advantage of the “resurrection scroll” and leveled a Rogue. After hitting 60 I went directly into Zangarmarsh. Even without heirlooms I only needed Marshes and Nagrand to get to 68. In your case I’d go Marshes and then as early as possible north to Blade’s Edge. With heirlooms and maybe guild bonus you are speaking a couple of hours forOutland. If you want to go slow you always can take the heirlooms off again afterwards 🙂

    Rauxis, chosen of CAT


  24. Hit the LFG queue as DPS while leveling (making sure you have all quests ready for instances). Just keep on killing in Outlands.
    Or ask your Young-one to chain-run Outlands instances. With a lvl 85 leading, the XP from full clears, should net you a huge chunk of XP (and gear).


  25. Stay in Azeroth until 60, the new content is better than going to hellfire at 58. That will let you skip most or all of hellfire alltogether. Do Zangarmarsh until 62, then go to terrokar. Then go to blades edge or shadowmoon. Full heirlooms should let you skip lots of the annoying quests in each zone and do the ones that can be easily done together only, and level into the next zone long before you run out.


  26. Hellfire just feels like dues we are forced to pay — but after spending hours back with the ‘shroom critters in Zangermarsh, I am finding my chi again. Chillax, man, go see the Spores and beat a drum. That usually helps. Go all Matthew McConaughy on them.


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