A newcomer’s Guide to Warcraft – Toogie learned the hard way so you don’t have to!


Hi. I decided to make this guide for fun and to kill some down time at work. I will cover many topics from character creation to strategies for making money. It’s not a guide to tell you what to do but it will explain many things which should be considered when rolling your first character and many lessons I learned the hard way. I have played this game way too much so I hope this helps some people out there.

Making Your First Character

The first thing you will have to do after installing warcraft is pick a server. I chose based off where my friends were, some people pick one with a cool name which is fine. Keep in mind that you must be on the same server to play with friends. It’s important to pick a server type that fits you. Here is a quick rundown of the different server types.

Normal- Sometimes called PVE servers. On these servers players must flag themselves before they can be attacked by other players. You can flag yourself by typing /pvp or attacking a flagged player or npc or by healing a pvp flagged member of your own faction. If you join a battleground you are automatically flagged. Characters made on PVE servers are only able to be transferred to Normal or RP servers.

PVP- On these servers you will be flagged for pvp by entering any area that is contested or belongs to the opposing faction. Pretty much after level 25, expect to be flagged pretty much anywhere you might be leveling. This means higher level players can and will hunt you down and kill you for sport. Starting areas and capital cities are safe zones. It is considered to be more difficult to level on these servers due to being killed by enemy players on a regular basis but it is also a lot of fun to kill them back. Characters made on a PVP server can be transferred to any server using the paid character transfer service.

RP- RP servers are just like normal servers with the exception of an additional set of rules to follow. These realms are catered to players that want to “role-play” or pretend they are actually the characters on the screen. The rules seem to be loosely enforced but you are generally expected to speak as if you were your character and have a name that fits a Medieval setting. The complete rules can be found here. Characters made on RP servers are only able to be transferred to Normal or RP servers.

RPPVP- RPPVP servers are just like PVP servers with the exception of an additional set of rules to follow. These realms are catered to players that want to “role-play” or pretend they are actually the characters on the screen. The rules seem to be loosely enforced but you are generally expected to speak as if you were your character and have a name that fits a Medieval setting. The complete rules can be found here. Characters made on RPPVP servers can be transferred to any server using the paid character transfer service.

Picking Your Race/Faction

After you have picked the server you will be taken to the character creation screen. From here you will need to pick the race, class and looks of your character. Also you will be choosing your faction. There are two factions Alliance and Horde. you cannot speak with or mail players of the other faction so If you plan on playing with friends you will want to be the same faction. On PVE or RP servers you can make characters of either faction. On PVP or RPPVP servers you can only have characters of the same faction. Keep in mind if you have characters in both factions they will not be able to mail things to eachother or transfer things by using nuetral auction houses. The Alliance are humans, dwarves, night elves, gnomes, and drenai. Horde are Orcs, Undead, Tauren, Trolls, and Blood Elves. If you have no preference on faction, read on and pick based off of which race/class combination sounds best to you. I’m going to give a run down of the races and classes. However not all classes are available to each race.

There are 10 total races in Warcraft. Each faction has 5. They are all pretty much equal but have little bonuses that are specific to each race. I suggest you don’t let starting stats or racial bonuses determine what you choose to be. Instead I would pick your race by what looks best and sounds the most fun to play to you. Your enjoyment of playing the game will benefit from that more than some miniscule advantage you might have by picking a race you dislike. You will be defined by your class and not your race. When people try to find groups they will ask for a warrior or a priest, they wont care if you are a troll or an orc. So make this decision based off what you like.

Humans have a small bonus to sword and mace skills. They also have 5% bonus to spirit. They have an ability called perception which can help spot stealthed targets. It can be beneficial in PVP environments. They also recieve a 10% bonus to faction gains. This becomes more important later in the game, to recieve some tradeskill recipes or patterns you need to have a certain reputation level with them.

Dwarves get a bonus to gun skill and frost resistance. The also have a treasure finding ability. Most people don’t use it because it interferes with the the tracking abilities of the gathering professions. Their main claim to fame is Stoneform. It gives a bonus to armor but what i like about it is it’s ability to neutralize poisons and diseases. Get poisoned? Stoneform real quick and your cured. It used to slow your walking speed down but they changed that so this ability is quite nice.

Night Elves have a 1% bonus to dodge. A small bonus to nature resistance. The get wisp spirit which makes them move faster in ghost form. Which makes those long corpse runs not so bad. Their big ability is shadowmeld. It allows them to stealth as long as they don’t move, cast a spell, fire a ranged weapon etc. Useful for hiding from things when you need to go afk or for ambushing pvp targets.

Gnomes get a bonus to thier skill if they choose to be engineers. They get a small bonus to arcane resistance and a bonus to intellect. Their big ability is called escape artist. It allows them to step out of movement impairing effects. Pretend you are in playing capture the flag and you have the flag and are running for your life and someone snares you with a ice trap, you hit escape artist and voila you are free to run again. They also get the unadvertised benefit of being hard to click on in PVP fights since compared to other races they are so small. It gives them a small edge since they are a little harder to target.

Drenai get a small bonus to jewel crafting professions. A bonus to shadow resistance. They also have either inspiring or heroic pressence. This grants party memebers a 1% chance to hit either melee or casting depending on what class you are. They also have a healing spell which is can come in handy paritcularly for warriors and rogues which have no natural healing ability.

Orcs get a small bonus to axes and pet damage. The also get a bonus to resist stunning effects it says 15% bonus but read the fine print first, It’s not as great as it sounds. It means a 15% to your current resist. Not a flat 15% bonus. So if you have 10% base chance to resist stuns your orc would have 11.5% chance to resist, not 25%. They also have bloodfury. When activated it gives a nice bonus to attack power, which means more damage, at the expense that heals will be 50% less effective. Most of the time this is a good trade since most characters don’t actively recieve heals. But I have screwed up and used this on a boss when I was main tank. Needless to say I couldn’t be healed fast enough and caused a problem for my group. So this can be great, but use it wisely.

Undead, sometimes known as the Forsaken, get a bonus to shadow resistance. They can also be underwater 3 times longer than other races. This can come in handy in certain situations but not enough to say this is a great ability. The can also “cannnibalize” which means they can eat humanoid or undead corpses. It can save money on food or maybe come in handy if your first aid is on cooldown. I primarily used it to mock people by eating their corpse after killing them in PVP. The also get an ability called Will of the Forsaken. It can make you immune to fear, sleep, or charm. It’s is awesome in PVP and has it’s uses in PVE but not very frequently.

Tauren get a bonus to nature resistance and the herbalism skill. They also get a 5% bonus to health. It doesn’t sound like much but I can’t tell you how many times I died, where if I had gotten in one more hit I would have lived. They also get warstomp. It stuns up to 5 people for 2 secs. This is a good one for pvp and pve as it can interrupt spellcasting but you have to time it right since it has a casting time.

Trolls have a passive ability to regenerate health. It helps with down time and since it’s 10% effective in combat it can help in those close calls but really isn’t anything to be proud of. They get a small bonus to thrown weapons, bows, and damage against beasts. They have a beserking ability that increases their attack speed by 10-30% depending on how close to dieing you are. 10% at full health. I’m not sure of the health levels it uses to increase from 10% to the 30% max. It can come in handy in a pinch thats for sure.

Blood Elves get a small bonus to enchanting and to ALL resistances. They also have “mana tap” which drains a small amount of mana from target and gives you a charge of magical energy. This charge is used in the ability “arcane torrent” for classes with mana this gives you a bonus to your mana per charge of mana tap, for rogues it grants energy. It also silences casters around you for 2 secs. You don’t have to have a mana tap to use arcane torrent and on my rogue I use this a lot to interrupt spell casting. Good for both PVP and PVE.

Choosing a Class

Classes might also be called jobs. It is the main definition of your characters abilities, skills, and play style. Each class has a function when grouping and when used correctly can make the difference between life and death of a party. I will summarize each class’ strengths and weaknesses and their party role.

Druids are a hybrid class meaning they have aspects of other classes and no solid playstyle or position. They have different forms and can mimic other classes abilities. In bear form they are like warriors, in cat form like rogues, in normal form they are casters and have a mix of damage and healing spells. They also have aquatic form which makes you swim faster and breath in water. Also they have a travel form which makes them run faster. It helps ease the pain of not having a mount when you are under level 40. There are more forms but you get the idea. In a party you can do pretty much any role but mainly you’ll probably be a designated healer since healers are important and usually the hardest class to come by when making a group. Their strength is versatility and survivability. You can do heavy damage as a cat then when low on health swich forms heal yourself and go back to catform for more damage dealing. Their weakness is that although they are versatile the animal forms aren’t quite as good as the real class they mimic. This can be made up for with skill and good equipment. Druids are restricted to leather armor and the learning curve is kind of high since you have so many abilities to learn to use effectively. This isn’t really a weakness but they are only available to the night elf or tauren races. I wish there were more races that could be druids.

Hunters are a high damage class. They also get to tame a pet at level 10. Hunters are argueably the easiest class to solo with. You have a pet that can take the damage while you stay back drilling your target with arrow after arrow or bullet after bullet etc. They also can “feign death” so if anything goes wrong they can effectively play dead, wait for things to reset, and try again. You also get a speed boost at 20 that helps you along until you have a mount. Hunters, in general, have a bad reputation in parties. Their have been too many bad hunters in the past and they have a role in a party that can easily be filled with other classes and in my opinion hunters are the least sought after party addition. There are a few instances where hunters can shine but most things can be done without them. In a party your job is to stay back and do damage and maintain a balance so your not doing too much damage that you pull aggro from the person tanking, also you should keep an eye on your healers and casters. If they are taking damage you should draw aggro from them since you can handle it better and your not as important. (Sorry, but true.) Now I did mention bad hunters; so I will give a couple examples of what makes a bad hunter so you don’t do it yourself. When grouping you need to be able to control your pet. So many deaths have been caused by hunters having their pet either attacking something it shouldn’t, chasing running monsters, or bad pathing by the AI. If you jump of a ledge your pet is going to take the long way around and bring everything along the way with it. Also you are a ranged class. Almost never should you be doing melee damage in a group. Be prepared for groups. Make sure you have lots of ammo. If you run out, you become a waste of space. I ran into this problem so much I started carrying around extra ammo in case I grouped with a hunter. A skilled hunter is definately a great group member though and can bring a lot to a party when used right. Strengths are excellent survivabilty and crowd control. They can kite better than anyone else. They are excellent for pvp in almost all scenarios. Weaknesses are bad melee ability and low priority when it comes to grouping. One thing that bothered me as a hunter was the need to have a bag slot designated for ammo. You can’t carry as much as other classes and having a full inventory is quite frustrating. Finding pet food can be a chore at times and also eats bag space.

Mages are also a high damage class. They get some sweet abilities like being able to open portals to capital cities, major time saver. They can also conjure food and water, which saves lots of money. It can get annoying having people begging you to make them food though. Mages have excellent crowd control and are most effective with a hit and run play style. In parties you will mainly be dps but will probably be called upon to sheep different enemies on a regular basis. So strengths are high damage, crowd control abilities, and free food! Weakness is low health and cloth armor. You won’t live long if something gets close enough to hurt you. Mages also have no healing ability.

Paladins are like warriors that can heal. They wear heavy armor and can use big two handed weapons. They get different auras and blessing to buff themselves and party members. They can be slow on the dps sometimes and can be slow to level but they can survive almost anything. They are heavily reliant on mana for damage and healing. Paladins are welcome into most groups and are usually designated healers. They can tank if the need arises and are excellent support class. Strengths are ability to heal and wear heavy armor. Great support class. Can ressurect dead party members. Weakness are no ranged ability and mana dependancy. Not quite as good as a warrior for tanking and aggro management and not quite as good as a priest for healing but a great blend of the two. With the right gear and skillful playing they can effectively replace either class.

Priests are the main healers. They have the best abilities to heal and shield party members from damage. If shadow specced they can do enough damage to rival a mage. Probably the most sought after class to group with. Many priests complain of being flooded with requests by strangers to group with them. They also have great buffs. Strengths are healing and damage ability and high demand for groups. Weaknesses are low health and pretty much no melee ability.

Rogues are light on armor and big on damage. They have tons of tricks to get into and out of bad situations. Stealthing is the primary ability that sets rogues apart from the crowd. They have some crowd control with sap. If things are going bad they can use vanish and just dissapear. They also can dual wield, but they can’t use two handed weapons. They can also use lock picking to make some extra pocket change. In parties you will be the primary damage dealer. The hard part is learning to balance your damage output so the tank can keep aggro. Since rogues wear only leather armor they can die pretty easy in instances if they are the primary focus of an enemy so it’s best to lay off the damage a little to make sure the tank is the one taking the hits. Strengths are their ability to do massive amounts of damage, ability to sneak through hard spots, and great abilities for escaping bad situations. Locking picking is essentially a free profession. I made more money with that than I did enchanting. Also they get to use poisons which make them even more deadly. Weaknesses are low armor in comparison to other melee classes and no way to heal themselves. There is a learning curve to be effective with combos and aggro management.

Shaman are another hybrid class. The main thing that sets them apart are their great totems. These provide buffs, do damage, slow down enemies, or even heal. Depending on how they spend talent points shaman can be really effective doing melee damage or spell damage. They are a blend of a warrior and a mage. They also get a ghostwolf form that makes you run faster and is nice until you get your mount. Shaman are excellent members for grouping. You will often be designated to heal but can easily fill a damage role if healing is already taken care of. Strengths are their great totems and buffs. exellent for pvp. Weaknesses are mana dependancy for damage and survivability. Totems are weak if targetted directly for damage. Poor ability to manage aggro. Would be a godly class if they could be main tanks.

Warlocks are an insane class. They have some many odd abilities. They primarily are damage dealers primarily their damage comes from dots. (damage over time spells) They can change health to mana and have abilities to drain mana or health from their target and use it themselves. They also get pets, but unlike hunters they don’t get to name them. They can be incredibly deadly in certain scenarios. They can summon other players to them. They can make soulstones which will save a group probably everytime they are in groups. Strengths are damage output. Convienence of being able to summon, You get a pet. Weaknesses are poor armor and having to manage soulshards which are needed for certain spells. They are also a little hard to start off since most of their better abilities come after level 20 but if you can stick with it they are a blast to play.

Warriors are the tank class. Have the ability to take and dish out high amounts of damage. Have the best abilities in the game to manage aggro. Welcome in every party and are probably the most important member of the group, with the healer being the close rival. My personal favorite class. Strengths are high health and damage, ability to use any weapon and armor in the game with the exception of a wand. Important group role. Great abilities to maintain and control aggro. Very easy class to learn and be effective with. Weaknesses are weak ranged ability and no healing. They have a buff but it expires every two minutes so can be a pain to keep up constantly. They also have no good way to get out of bad situations. Usually it’s hamstring then run and hope you have enough health to get far enough away that they stop chasing you before you die.

The Early Levels

Ok you’ve made your character. Now what? When you log in for the first time you will be greeted with a short “video” introduction to your races background. If you’re like me you’ll just hit the “Esc” key and get started as fast as possible. When you start you will see a NPC in front of you. NPCs are characters in the game that are not controlled by other players. Notice the yellow ! over their head. That means they have a quest for you. Right-click on the NPC and you will “talk” to them. It will give you some dialogue describing the quest and it’s objectives. Their are thousands of quests in World of Warcraft but most fall under a few different categories. Go kill a specific number of monsters. Gather certain items. Or traveling quests which involve making deliveries or talking to people in different areas. The early quests are fairly straight forward and should not be difficult to understand. If you have any problems make sure you try to reread the quest; most of the questions will be answered in the quest description. You can access the quest log by pushing the “L” key. If you still have trouble you can ask other players for help. if you type in “/1 ” and then your question it will show up in the chat box of all the players in your area. For example: “/1 Can anyone tell me where I can find the kobold miners?” most of the time the other players will be helpful and point you in the right direction. When you complete a quest the NPCs wil have a yellow ? above thier head. They will also show up on your mini map. Travel around your starting area and do all the quests you can. They will provide you with armor and small amounts of money which is needed to train your skills. Every other level (2,4,6,8….) you will be able to learn new skills from your class trainer. At some point in the starting area you will be given a quest to visit the class trainer. This is who teaches you your new spells or special skills. They charge a fee, but usually it’s pretty reasonable and after the first few levels you shouldn’t have any trouble having enough money for training. Eventually, you will complete all the quests in the area and be given a new quest that involves traveling to another town, you will usually be level 5 or 6 by then.

Follow the road out of the starting area and you should come across the town after a short walk. In the town you will find new class trainers and a handful of profession trainers. I’ll cover professions in more detail later, but if you see something you like feel free to train it. The quests here are a little tougher than the starting area ones. You will start running into aggresive monsters that will attack you just for being too close to them. Also, sometimes when they get low on health they will run away and come back with friends. Just play careully and you’ll do fine. Doing these quest should get you to level 10 or higher. When you get to level 10 go find your class trainer. For most classes they will have a special quest for you. This quest will usually give you a nice ability after you complete it. Hunters will get to train a pet, warriors learn defensive stance, druids learn bear form, etc. Also at level 10 you will get your first talent point. Press “N” on the keyboard to bring up the talents screen. Each class has three talent trees. Each tree gives bonuses to different aspects of the class. It’s important to think about where you place your talent points. In general it’s best to keep your talent points in one tree, so you can get to the better abilities that are farther down the tree sooner. Also, while leveling up it is usually best to put points in talents that boost your offensive abilities. So you do more damage. But there is no set way to do this and picking your talents is what makes you different from other players of your class. If you make a mistake, or feel like trying something new, you can visit a trainer and pay them to reset your talent points but it gets expensive if you do it a lot. The first time is 1 gold piece but after a while it can get as high as 50 gold! Eeventually, you will get a quest that will send you to your race’s capital city, For most the races you just need to keep following the same road you used to get to the second town.

Capital cities are pretty big. As a new player I liked to just walk around them and take them all in. Each city is unique and has lots of sights to see. I recommend you visit the inn and set the inn as your home so you can use your hearthstone to warp back to it and have quick access to things you need. It’s very handy to be able to hearth back to a big city because they usually have everything you can need. In the capital city you should be able to find class trainers, profession trainers, a bank for storing your extra things, weapon trainers, and the auction house. It can be hard to find things in big cities sometimes. If you right click on the guard NPCs they can give you directions to where you can find things around the city. Also in the city there is lots of chat going on and they have a trade channel where people try to sell things. To talk in the trade channel you need to type /2. It’s similar to the general chat I described. What you will notice though is people linking items in their chat messages. If you click on the item, you can see it’s stats. If you hold “ctrl” and click you will see what the item would like on your character. To link your own items hold down “shift” and click the item in your inventory. Make sure to check out the auction house. Here you will be able to put your items up for sale and buy items from other players.

After you are done exploring the city go back to the second town and finish any quests you might have left, and you’ll get a quest that will take you to another town that will have a whole bunch of new quests and harder monsters to kill. These towns usually have an inn and a mailbox but no class trainers. Aren’t you glad you set your hearthstone to your capital now? The town may also have a flight master. Talk to the flight master and you will learn the flight path. You will then be able to fly back to this flight master later on from other flight masters you find as you travel along. Eventually you will have a whole network of paths that criss cross their way across both continents, making travel quicker and more convienant. From here the strategy is pretty much the same. Complete the quests in the area and move on to next area. If you seem to have completed all the quests in an area or the quests seem to be too hard for your level it’s best to take a break and go try a new town. You can travel to the starting areas of other races and do the quests there and get yourself up a couple levels before coming back and it will save you a lot of frustration. Just use chat to ask for directions on getting to a new area.

Grouping With Other Players

You will start getting quests for dungeons. They are often called instances as well. These instances are setup to encourage group play, provide different types of challenges, and they give out better than average equipment. You will need a well balanced party of similar levels to complete them. It might seem tempting to have your high level friend take you through these so you can hog all the items and get the quests done quickly but I recommend you try it with a group of players around your same level. You will learn a lot this way and later on in higher level instances you will know what you are doing and it will save you, and other players, lots of frustration. The earlier level instances are easier and give you time to figure things out. If you wait until later to learn party ettiquette and group skills you will often be kicked out of a group so they can find a better prepared player. Before doing an instance make sure your armor is repaired. You have plenty of food and bandages. You have ranged ammo if your class uses it. And you have any needed spell components. Shaman should have ankhs for self-resurecting, rogues should have their poisons and flash powder etc. Bringing along some health potions will always come in handy as well but people won’t expect you to have them.

A typical 5-man group is usually one tank, one healer, one melee damage class, one ranged damage class, and one extra that can be any of the above. This is by no means the only way to do it, but this has been a proven formula for sucess. In higher levels you will do groups of 10, or 25, or even 40! But don’t think you can slack off in a group. Each member is important. Even in a 40 man raid, each person has a job to do and if they don’t do it the whole group will face disaster. In a 5 man group, The tank will usually “pull” the monsters to the group. Then he uses his skills to maintain aggro so the monsters will attack him and not the other members of the party. If he does a good job it makes life easier for the healer since they will only need to focus on healing one person and they won’t run out of mana wasting heals on 3 different people. The job of the damage classes is to hit the same target the tank is fighting and do as much damage as they can without drawing the attention of the mob away from the tank. Also as a secondary job, they are to protect the healer. Healing will draw the attention of the mob away from the tank as well. So if you ever see a monster going for your healer, do everything you can to draw it away. If the healer dies, usually the whole party dies with him. If you save the healer even at the cost of your own life you did a good thing. The healer will be able to resurrect you shortly after the fight and you can continue on with minimal downtime. A good tank is the key to a good party though. If the tank is holding aggro well, the damage classes can go all out and the healer won’t have to worry about being hurt since the monsters are all focused on the tank. A good healer is key to keeping the tank alive. And good damage classes are important for killing the monsters quickly so they die before the healer runs out of mana and can’t heal the tank anymore. Each role supports one another and that’s why if each member knows their role and does their job, your party will have an easy time even when things go wrong a good party will survive a catastrophie where an disorganized party would easily be killed.

Some groups will have what’s called an “off-tank” usually it’s when they have an extra warrior around. The way an off-tank works is they will draw aggro from one monster and keep it away from the group and fight it one on one while the rest of the group kills the other monsters. It’s usually a warrior because they need to be tough enough to take a beating while the healer focuses on the main tank. Once the group kills the other monsters they then heal the off-tank and help him finish off his monster. If the off-tank manages to kill it on his own, he would then go assist the party with the other remaining monsters. This really helps in pulls where there are multiple monsters. For example, the tank shoots his gun at a group of 4 monsters and they all start charging the party. The tank can try and hold the aggro of all 4 monsters but with each extra monster it’s more difficult to keep each one focused on the tank. Usually with that big of a group the tank takes more hits, which means the healer is healing more, but the tank’s aggro is split across 4 monsters and it won’t take much for the healer to heal enough to catch the attention of a monster. That monster will start attacking the healer which may end up killing the healer causing the whole group die. But if you have an off-tank they would grab one of the monsters charging the party and lead it away from the group and it gives the tank just 3 to deal with. Meaning less hits, less healing, and better control of the group of monsters pulled. Some classes have what is referred to as crowd control, a way to take a monster temporarily out of combat. Mages can turns things into sheep, rogues can sap, warlocks can seduce, priests can shackle undead. The idea behind this is similar to the strategy of off-tanking. It gives the group one less monster to worry about and once they kill the rest of the group the can go back to the crowd controlled monster. The hardest part about it is getting everyone in the group to leave the crowd controlled monster alone. Because if you attack it while it’s sheeped or sapped etc. it will free it to go cause trouble with the rest of the party. Communication is the key to coordinate what is being off-tanked, what is being crowd controlled etc.

We could talk about group strategy all day but it can be summed by saying know your role. Even as situations get harder fulfilling your role will be the key to survival in group enviroments. Most parties will have experienced players that know their role, and someone who doesn’t sticks out like a sore thumb. Not filling your role will lead to your parties death and a long run back to your corpse. If you need help let the party know you are new, most players are happy to take a moment out to explain what you need to do or discuss the strategy for bosses. It’s a lot easier to help someone than die and get frustrated and waste time running back to the instances, resurrecting, getting buffs, and getting organized again and then discuss strategy so it doesn’t happen again. So make sure you ask for help when you need it. It saves a lot of time and energy. Not to mention a lot of times parties fall apart after a “wipe.” They will get frustrated and leave the party. Once one person leaves it’s usually hard to find a quick replacement and more people leave rather than wait around and eventually you have no party left and you will need to find a new party and start over again. After you have done it with a group, by all means have your high level buddy take you through it so you can have all the money and items. Just don’t rob yourself of the chance to learn to do it right. It will pay off in the long run because it will make you a better player.

While we are discussing party tactics we should discuss how loot works in groups. One new thing you will find is when you are in a party some of the better items will ask players to roll for them. You will have a small window come up that asks you if you “need” or “greed” the item.The general rule is to roll need, if and only if the item is usable by you and is an upgrade to your current gear. Most players are very understanding when a player needs an item. But on the other hand it is a big deal if you take advantage of this and roll need on things you don’t. Most parties will remove you from the group for doing it and it damages your reputation. If you have a reputation as a “ninja looter” you will find it hard to find people to group with. Some people even get kicked out of guilds for it. If more than one person chooses need the computer will “roll” and it generates a random number between 1-100 for each player and whoever has the higher number will recieve the item. If you don’t need an item choose greed or if you are feeling generous you can pass on the item. All players that picked greed will then roll and the item given to the highest roll. If everyone passes then no one recieves the item automatically and it can be picked up by anyone that feels like looting the corpse. In some parties blue items (the extremely good items) will have special rules. Like everyone must pass and then let the group discuss who will recieve it. Either by talking out who could use it most or doing a more organized roll. The winner will then be allowed to loot the corpse to recieve the item. It is important to go over what the loot rules are early on. You’d hate to pass on a blue you could have used expecting to talk it out but have someone else who didn’t know roll need and get it without you having a chance. Most blue items bind when they are picked up, so they can’t be traded to other players. That’s why most groups like to talk things over so mistakes aren’t made, people get pretty upset when they lose out on good items unfairly and believe it or not people will leave groups over this. So make sure you are being fair when you choose need and things will work out just fine.

I’m Broke…

Getting money in wow can be frustrating, and trust me high level players will hate you if you beg for money. If you are fortunate you may have a high level friend that can be your benefactor and help you financially until your character can support itself. For the rest of us we have to blaze our own trail and become financially independant on our own. There are lots of ways to make money in warcraft and everyone has their own ideas on how to do it. I’m going to put in my strategies and you can use them or not but I do well with them. Probably the most important thing you need to do to make money is get big bags. I recommend you get big bags as soon as you can afford too. I usually start off with 12 slot bags. They are usually reasonably priced and will serve you well until you can move up to 14 or 16 slots. Being able to hold more will mean you will be able to either sell more since you don’t need to pass up items or you will be more efficient since you don’t have to run to town constantly to clear your small bags. Either way it’s win/win. But to get big bags you need to be able to afford big bags and what’s a player just starting out supposed to do?

At low levels the best way to make money is to get two gathering professions. I prefer mining and skinning personally but you can choose other ones. Why do I like mining? Well at early levels copper is pretty easy to find. A stack of 20 copper bars will sell for 1-2 gold on most servers. So while you do the quests early on you mine every copper node you come across. Also, coincidentally most the time mageweave bags (12 slot) sell for 1-2g on most servers. So with my first few copper sales I replace my bags and life is easier when you got bigger bags. After that you can use the money to buy upgrades your gear. I choose skinning because it doesn’t interfere with the find minerals radar on the mini map. If you choose herbalism and mining you will have to switch between find minerals and find herbs radars. You can choose herbalism if you’d like to instead of mining. It is still profitable to pick the flowers and sell them. I just feel I make more money with copper. Check your auction house for prices and make an educated guess on what you will make more money doing.

But I want to have a craft you say? I think you should have a craft, I am merely recommending you wait for a while before you do it. Having two gathering professions will give you lots of material to sell and you will get a nice wallet a lot faster. You think selling crafted items is going to make you money? Well you are wrong. Crafting will actually cost you money. Say you are a blacksmith and you want to make a Copper Battle Axe. You have the all the copper and stone you need but you don’t have the malachite. Now are you going to go out and mine until you find two malachite? Well some of you might, but the majority are going to run over to the auction house and buy it. Now you just spent money. But I just made this cool axe you say? Well what are you going to do sell it, use it? According to the average selling price for the axe is 40 silver. Ooooh that’s sounds good. But if you think about the materials that went into making it you probably could have made at least 1 gold selling them instead of making them into an axe. This formula is true for pretty much every item you can craft at lower levels. The materials cost more than the item you are making is worth. Sell the materials and use the money to buy items that other people are making. By gathering at first you will be better off. My last character I started on a new server had 700 gold by the time I turned level 40. I easily bought my mount, upgraded armor frequently along the way etc. I then dropped mining and took up leatherworking. I invested 100 gold into buying low level leather and within a couple hours I had my leather working up to a level where I was making upgrades to my level 40+ armor. And guess what. I still had 600 gold I could play with. I may have lost money spending 100g to work my crafting up. I made some of it back by selling things I made, but also I put money into other people’s pockets. I most likely helped some other lower level skinners get established with money in their pocket. It’s the circle of life. After you have a profession that is that high you will be able to find things you can make for a profit and use your craft to make money. It’s just hard to do at low levels so just skip it and wait til you are level 40 or so and catch up easily in one day. And then when you are 60 or 70 and swimming in cash you can drop your other gathering profession and buy your way through another crafting skill if you feel like it.

Here are a few small things you can do to generate money. I like to find a vender that sells shirts. I like to buy Common Gray Shirts and sell them in the auction house. I buy them from the vendor for 4 silver and I stick them up on the auction house for 50 silver. I found they sell really well. The dark color looks good on rogues and I see a lot of them wearing it. Also, tailors don’t make these shirts so there isn’t going to be a million of them up so you won’t have much competition. I guess the other people don’t realize they can buy them a lot cheaper. I usually put 1 or 2 per day up and they almost always sell. In Orgrimmar and Stormwind the vender that sells these is just a stone’s throw away from the auction house. Also, the meat that drops from low level animals is more valuable than most people realize. Things like stringy wolf meat only sell to vender for a few copper but you can sell them for around 2 silver each. I don’t usually have a problem getting 50 silver out of a stack of 20 meat and most people simply sell it off to a vendor for a few coppers. The meat is handy for people that want to raise their cooking profession quickly. And like I mentioned before high level players normally find it a lot faster and easier to buy their way through professions.

The only other thing I want to add is to make sure you are getting a good deal on what you buy in the auction house. Don’t update your gear every level. Wait until a piece is about 5 levels below you before you change it out, unless you find a bargain. A penny saved is a penny earned. Well not quite, but the less you spend the quicker you will have higher amounts of money. If you come across a blue item that isn’t bind on pickup, I recommend you sell it rather than equip it. the blue item will normally sell for enough to buy 4 or 5 green items at least and you can turn what would be an upgrade to 1 piece of equipment into an upgrade to several pieces of equipment. Once you have a couple hundred gold tucked away it won’t matter as much if you decide to just go ahead and equip it, but early on selling it will be extremely beneficial. Also, if you’re willing to do a little work you can search the auction house for underpriced items and buy them and sell them for more. There is a mod called auctioneer that helps you find the bargain priced items, but I’ve never used it myself. It sounds handy though. I usually look the item up using and see what the average price it sells for. If something is 8 gold and it normally sells for 15 gold I’ll buy it and relist it and make a quick buck. This is a riskier way of generating money but it has the potential for big gains.

General Advice

I already mentioned this but get big bags as soon as possible.

Join a guild. Members of the guild are usually more willing to help eachother than strangers. Also if you are able to make groups of all guild members things usually run a lot smoother in instances. It’s the easiest way to make friends in the game. And most guilds have crafters that are willing to craft items free of charge if you provide the materials needed. Some of the more generous ones will provide some of the materials themselves. A lot of times people will give you items just to help you out. Or say you need something like heavy leather. Someone in your guild might have or be willing to go farm some for you and will give it to you cheap. Guilds are good. You don’t have to be in one but it helps.

Be courteous to other players. You never know who you might be playing with and sometimes simply being nice will be enough that people will want to reward you with a favor.

Be honest. While no one knows who you are in real life. That character on the screen has an identity and people will recognize and remember you. If you have a bad reputation it will be hard to find groups that will take you. People don’t buy your auctions because they don’t want to give you their money etc.

Make a low level character and run them to a big city and park them there. Then as you get full bags mail the items to them and have them sell them on the auction house for you. It will save you lots of time especially if you’re nowhere close to an auction house. Items take 1 hour to arrive. If you ever need the money you can quickly mail it to yourself since money comes instantly.

Stupid Things I’ve Done That You Should Not

Swim from Darkshore to Desolace. Time spent 2 hours, XP gained none.

Max out your hunter with +Spirit items to get more mana regen.

Raid small villages by yourself.

Raid large cities by yourself.

Walk on the grass of the Tarren Mill.

Perform AoE spells on the boat at the end of the dead mines.

Fall off the walkway to the boat in the dead mines.

Jump off the twin towers in feralas without a goblin parachute

Use the goblin parachute in feralas, and then wait 5 seconds to jump off the twin towers.

Jump over what looks like a small hill between Tanaris and the Un’Goro crater to take a shortcut to Un’Goro but results in a 12 second freefall of doom. (You may or may not be able to reach your body, so you will end up with 10 min of res sickness)

Attempt to Solo deadmines or stockades at level 20.

Try to ride the Horde Wind Riders as an alliance member. (Right click the guy, I dare ya)

Stand there and look at Samantha Swift, while she kills you.

Stand there and look at Stitches, while he kills you.

Train King Bangalash, and keep him in the stable.

Join Arathi Basin when you are in the middle of a quest really far from IronForge.

Spec your warrior to defense at lower levels

Release your spirit when a boss in an instance is not dead yet.

Refer to the Ironforge moat as the “Bitch Ditch” in the forums. I fell into that ditch like a thousand times due to lag back when the only alliance auction house was in ironforge.

Tell people that Chuck Norris talk is annoying.

Make a post on your guild website saying what you sell to make good money in the early levels because no one will believe you anyway. And if they do you just have more competition in the AH. (Seriously copper sells well!)

Make an alt, then decide to delete it and accidentally delete your main.

Fall off The Great Lift near Thousand Needles. You WILL die! But the graveyard was like 10′ away, so it wasn’t that bad.

Try to figure out if you can jump off Deeprun Tram while it’s moving. (Yes, you can. And it’s a long walk back.)

Right click on gear icons in an instance and then ask “What happens when I push this?” (It releases all the monsters that just ambushed our group. Thanks nub.)

Join a guild that randomly invites you.

Try to start your own guild.

Sap people in Booty Bay so they miss the boat. Sure it’s funny but the guards will treat you like your name is Rodney King.

Use bloodfury while main tanking an instance boss.

Unleash a Infernal into the auction house.

Summon people underwater so they drown. (Account suspended for “harassment”)

Decide to twink a rogue. Put Crusader enchant on two swords and realize after that they are both meant for main-hand only and already are soul bound.

Go afk in a instance while you are qued for a battleground. (You will auto join the battleground after a couple minutes. Bye bye group.)

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    Nov 16, 2010 @ 11:49 am

    This is a great guide,This is a great guide, especially the “things not to do section” – BUT it needs an update! If anyone would like to adopt this guide and update it, please leave a comment.

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    Apr 2, 2009 @ 2:18 am

    Near experienceMy friend accidentally deleted his main when he was like lvl 50 ( i no its not that high but it was his main) so what he did is he e-mailed blizzard saying his account got hacked and they brought back his main.

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    Apr 2, 2009 @ 2:12 am

    Awesome guide!!!!Awesome guide!!!!

    only one thing I think you should add and it isn’t even vital …a table of contents just so that readers can navigate a lot easier.

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    Mar 31, 2009 @ 10:50 am

    Things I Have Done That You Should NotWalked to what looked like the edge of a waterfall on Teldrassil only to find it was the edge of the tree – as with the crater, there is no way to retrieve your corpse!

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    Dec 18, 2008 @ 21:24 pm

    Oh noezOh noez 😉

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    Dec 18, 2008 @ 5:21 am

    Protection, right now, isProtection, right now, is called the best Warrior leveling spec by some. Go Prot, go!

    Oh, here’s something not to do : Set auto-walk on when you’re spending 10+ mins on WoW-pro; I got into The Great Sea from Undercity doing that, haha.

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    Jan 19, 2008 @ 19:29 pm

    Yeah, you make a good point.Yeah, you make a good point. I did this during the early stages of the game’s release and protection was not nearly as viable as it is now. But I still think going arms or fury would get you leveling faster. But prot is great for survivability like you mentioned.

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    Jan 1, 2008 @ 21:13 pm

    Great guideIf only every new player saw this guide.

    One thing I would like to add, is that while being in a guild is great, you shouldn’t just randomly ask people to invite you into their guild. I have had this happen, and our guild is mostly people who know each other in real life, along with a couple people who we played with first, then invited into the guild. In the large cities, there are usually people recruiting for their guilds, and you can talk to them about what they are all about and decide if it is the kind of guild you are looking for.

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    Sep 30, 2007 @ 13:07 pm

    In your ‘Things not to do’In your ‘Things not to do’ part you said not to level protection as a warrior from the beginning.

    Protection is an excellent tree to go for from level 10. It provides excellent survivability (admittedly at the expense of kill times) but playing a protection warrior is good for new people to try out.
    At level 39 you can get Concussion Blow which is a lifesaver in PvP and PvE encounters and at 40 you get Shield Slam which is a superb instant attack.

    Try doing battlegrounds as a protection warrior. It rocks, going into Warsong Gulch in defensive mode and picking up the flag, no one can pull you down!

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    Aug 8, 2007 @ 17:04 pm

    Nice guide Toogie, that lastNice guide Toogie, that last bit was hilarious! 🙂 Also your tips were great as well, and though I’ve gotten a level 60 before, and just recently started a new server, I stupidly decided to get enchanting and tailoring as my profs, AGAIN. Of course, that eats money like there’s no tomorrow, so I’ll most likely put them on hold for the moment.

    Keep up the good work, I’m sure many would find this guide helpful. 😉

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    Jun 13, 2007 @ 5:24 am

    LOL the Stupid Things I’veLOL the Stupid Things I’ve Done That You Should Not was hilarious…………..i was like rolling on ma floor laughing especially aout the summoning under water lol well good guide it might actually teach a noob something about world of warcraft 😉

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    May 27, 2007 @ 10:02 am

    Awesome guide Toogie.Awesome guide Toogie.

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    May 23, 2007 @ 2:50 am

    I know the formatting forI know the formatting for the section headers is off. I’ll fix it later. I’m just out of time right now.

    /fixed 🙂

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