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Leveling and Professions

This a subject that’s come up a number of times over the years. The answer is never fully clear and everyone has their own opinions about what the best professions are while leveling. Let’s face it, we all want to get our two crafting professions as soon as we can. But one must remember that while your leveling, there is only one thing that is important; leveling.

So what are some of the things that people recommend? Well I remember back in Wrath of the Lich King, I ran a guild called Lords of Wolzard for a good amount of time. It was fun and one of the things I did for my guild was teach them how to make gold in-game. I would end up seating and talking with my guild about ways to do this and often was asked; “What professions should I level with my x character”. Well this question I see all the time and it’s not one that’s easy to just go, well you’re a mage so tailoring and enchanting go best.

As many of you have seen, tailoring isn’t just for cloth users. With the changes that came to gathering professions in Cataclysm, with gaining experience off every node, many have opted to go with duel-gathering.

Mining & Herbalism

There are three gathering professions in the game and two of he three, give you an amount of experience base on your level and your gathering skill. As such if you’re a high level in a low-level zone, you wont gain very much experience from a node. On the other hand if you’re in a higher level zone you get a good amount, some times up to a quest worth of it.

The best part is there really isn’t a right answer here, some people would rather take two gathering professions, I know some people like to focus only on leveling and don’t take any professions until max level. Which works if you already swimming in max level characters and gold.

However if you’re not, let it be a new server your rolling, or simply new to the game and in some chases have one max level character. No matter what your set-up is, some times Mining and Herbalism can be a pain to level.

First off, I’ve level a number of character so in Cataclysm and I can tell you that two things happen. You focus on trying to keep your gathering skill par with your level and the zone you’re in or you don’t and it falls behind. I’ve leveled a character and only force myself to take nodes that are in my path and not out-of-the-way of the quest. I found doing this, I keep up with leveling but my professions fell behind.

To the point when I moved to the next zone well, I can’t gather half of what I see. On the other hand you take up focusing on gathering every node you can and end up taking you nearly twice as long to level. Which as I said the focus of leveling is that, leveling.

Enchanting and Mining

So what is the idea way? Well back in Wrath I use to tell people to take up, Enchanting and Mining. This was however before Cataclysm’s changes. So why those two?

It’s very simple; first off you’re going to be leveling and leveling doing questing. Not every quest is going to give you a good reward for your class. And you’ll be replacing gear rather quickly. The 1-60 grind takes about a day and even less if you have BoA gear plus the guild perk. So you’ll be getting a lot of gear you can’t use (due to BoAs) and gear that’s just not worth anything to you.

The options are to sell it to the vendor for some gold here an there or… you disenchant it. I was able to level an enchanter up to about 300 something by the time I was pushing level 65 without even once going to the Auction House and buying gear to Disenchant. The other reason you’re taking mining is simply I feel that mining is more of a money-maker at lower level than herbalism is. but that’s a judgement call, you could go with Herbalism over Mining and still get the most out of leveling.

Richard Arellano is the founder and webmaster of the NeckarUnrivaled.com, HunterMastery.com and Majin-Planet.net. Currently studying HTML/CSS and enjoys playing MMORPGs, Magic the Gathering writing and Roleplaying.

6 thoughts on “Leveling and Professions”

  1. I always take herbalism and mining while leveling, except on a hunter where it is Skinning and herbalism.

    Mining versus Herbalism is a judgement call, they probably balance out in the long run (Herbalism seems a better gold source to me). Below level 20 Mining is certainly a better gold maker in my experience. But then you get some very valuable herbs after that point. Even on a L85 I make good gold from Kingsblood & Ragveil for example. Also the herbalism haste bonus is probably more useful than extra health.

    However with so many people leveling through the dungeon finder it can be difficult to keep gathering professions up to speed, I would suggest Enchanting and Tailoring for those following that route. Plenty of cloth drops in instances, and items crafted to level it can be disenchanted if they don’t sell.

    TLDR: Tailoring & Enchanting if you level through LFD. Herbalism over mining after L20

    1. Thanks for the reply. I wouldn’t recommend Tailoring & Enchanting if you’re leveling even if you using the LFD because you simply wont gather enough cloth to match the rate in which you level. It’s the same with any profession. Which is sort of a problem. The way professions currently level is base off an old out-date leveling system that we had back in BC days. Wrath was a bit better.

      Like I said you can pretty much with no BoA or guild perk level 1-60 in one day played time. That’s pretty fast if you ask me. You’ll out level the professions no matter what route you take. If your duel, I found I end up wasting time questing because I would see a nod, out of the way of my quest and I run over to get it. That’s not so bad once you get flying, but it’s still a time sink.

      I still recommend enchanting if your questing, not so much if you only level to 15 then hit the LFD. If you the kind of person who does that then no matter what profession you have, you’ll end up out leveling it and not gathering enough mats to level them. I had this happen on 4 characters. I end up taking Skinning and Mining on a hunter and found that after about level 22 I was having a hard time skinning because there where less beast in instances early on and when I did reach the ones full of them, I couldn’t skin them.

      I should have added if your questing and don’t care about the small boost of exp you get from Mining/Herbalism I would take skinning. Check your server but there are a whole lot of wholes in leather between low level and wrath.

  2. “I found I end up wasting time questing because I would see a nod, out of the way of my quest and I run over to get it. That’s not so bad once you get flying, but it’s still a time sink”

    Staying in level appropriate areas the nodes are often worth at least as much as killing a mob so probably worth the small detour. Herb & Mining = more nodes = more ‘free’ XP.

    As regards not getting enough cloth from instances, you can buy extra from the AH (same place you get the rods required for enchanting from) and disenchanting crafted items can even help pay for this, this is possible at skill 35 with heavy linen gloves = strange dust. Then there are netherweave bags which bring in a nice amount of gold every day (even if you buy mats from the AH) for very little time invested. I have followed this route successfully a number of times when rolling on a new realm. I have too many toons with enchanting and tailoring lol.

    Skinning is very much an outdoor profession so no I wouldn’t recommend it if going the LFD route.

    1. True, very true and I agree with you on everything you said because however, my post was more gear to people who are rather new to gold making. Most people aren’t going to know off hand what cloth item is going to turn into one dust. I remember my first time around I end up making gear and being able to disenchant it but not be able to use the dust I gain from it.

      The problem with mining and herbs is it’s not really free, you have to still go to the nod and you know how it goes. You go off your path to get a nod, then you see more and you keep going before you know it your back tracking. It’s more of a time sink to get your quest done quickly because at level mining ore at the level only maybe gives you as much exp as a normal kill. If you level past the zone you get far less exp. But again its a choice, I found time wise I wasted too much time gather while leveling then leveling. Which is the idea of the post.

      The best way to level while still having professions. In time you have to just wait for a boat, or something you can disenchant the gear in your bags while waiting. But yes the idea is to level without using the auction house. I really hope they lower the crafting time of netherweave bags because yeah… far too long.

    1. @TheOvercut

      That’s what I do generally on new characters, I some times however taking dual gathering simple because I’m a on new server and need the mats. But I think my post was more gear to new gold makers. You know people who may only have a few 100 gold or maybe under 10k so to speak. But the best thing about it is you can take pretty much any of the combos and still make out well.

      It makes for good discussion too I believe as well. Thanks everyone for the replies. It’s nice to see what other people think and the other side of the same coin.