Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Planning for Cataclysm

There are rumors that we may be playing Cataclysm as early as this November, so it is far from too early to start planning to get the most out of your fresh Goblin or Worgen.  For those of you who are serious about making the push to level 85 with one of Cataclysm's new classes, a little preparation can make all the difference.  After the bump you'll find my tips for getting your new character off to a great start when Cataclysm ships.
Build Your Bankroll

If you plan on questing your way up to level 85, gold for training skills and repairs should not be a problem.  You may, however, fall short when it comes to major purchases such as flying mounts.  Also, a couple pieces of gear from the Auction House can really make a big difference in how your character performs at lower levels.  Lastly, who wants to bother with gold if you don't need to?

Making gold at level 80 is easy.  Farm some materials to sell, run your dailies, or simply lay off the auction house for a couple weeks and you can build up a nice coin purse to help your Cataclysm toon live the good life.  Wrath of the Lich King is almost over, don't buy those level 80 epics.  Save up for Cataclysm instead.

Get Those Heirlooms

Heirloom items will still work in Cataclysm up to level 80.  With a full stack of heirlooms, you can level up 25% faster than less fortunate players.  For the first 20%, all you need is a pile of badges from Wrath of the Lich King's many heroic dungeons.  That final 5% will be tougher though as you must win the Kalu'ak Fishing Derby which only takes place on Saturday afternoons.  If you hope to be sporting a Dread Pirate Ring in Cataclysm, you really need to start working on it now.

Even though the experience boosts are the main draws for heirloom items, do not neglect your heirloom weapons and trinkets.  Though weapons may be easy enough to find as you level, trinkets are harder to get your hands on.  Also, the mana and health refunds provided by the heirloom trinkets help limit downtime for players who prefer to level up solo.

Build Up Bag Space

Blizzard learned back in Burning Crusade that it was a good idea to hand out bags as part of the leveling process.  What they haven't learned, however, is that tiny little bags aren't going to be enough to hold the massive pile of loot you will ultimately gather.  Do yourself a favor and pick up some large bags for your soon to be baby Worgen or Goblin.  Now is the time to get them because once Cataclysm ships demand for bags will skyrocket and supply will dry up.

Get Yourself Some Gear

Remember how I mentioned before that you want to squirrel away some money for your Cataclysm rerolls.  Well, if you plan to use that gold to buy gear, do yourself a favor and pick it up today. 

As nice as it might be, you will not be one of the only players to hop on a Worgen or Goblin when Cataclysm drops.  Thousands of other lowbies will not only be competing with you for quest mobs, but will also be bidding against you in the Auction House.  This will drive prices for low level gear way up.  Also, all the level 80s currently farming low level gear will likely be busy working on hitting level 85 instead of putting up gear for you to buy.  This will push the prices up even farther.  Strike now while the iron is hot!

Consider Professions

Though I would recommend forgoing your professions while you focus on leveling; if you are committed to seeing your new toon gainfully employed, start laying the groundwork now.  Just as there will be enhanced competition for lowbie gear when Cataclysm ships, it will also be hard to get your hands on low level profession materials.  Stock up on them today to save some serious cash.  Even if you plan on taking a gathering profession in Cataclysm, you might be better served to buy the mats you need to level your crafting profession now and sell the materials you gather to players who did not prepare as well as you did.

What have you been doing to prepare for rolling a new Worgen or Goblin in Cataclysm?  Let me know in the comments.

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