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10 x 85

July 18, 2011

Dear Reader,

Some brief updates.  First, I finished Fallout over the weekend, as I intended (so it wouldn’t be in the way once my wife got home).  I decided all the factions were untrustworthy and I’d just do it myself, and there was some bloodshed as a result.  One fellow just wouldn’t take no for an answer, and he had to be seen to, but overall I was satisfied with the result.

I purchased another cheapy called Cthulu Saves the World, which is a 16 bit throwback to the days of Final Fantasy (2, probably), and while I DO NOT recommend trying to play on hard mode, the normal mode is very entertaining, sarcastic, campy, and enjoyable.  Leveling in the game is simple as you are simply presented with two options each time you level which may be more HP or more Str or an “cheap” escape spell that sometimes works or an “expensive” one that always works.  It’s been very much worth the price.

I launched back in to WoW, breaking (but not really) my promise of never going to Zaroics again (I only returned for the raptor, which I said I would, but still).  My group was incapable of finishing.  I stuck through for about an hour and a half, but finally enough was enough (on the cauldron boss, as usual).  My wife healed better in there than she had ever healed in there before, and only on two occasions did I feel I had to blow a cooldown, and both were a result of her having to heal others and being forced to move at the same time.  Simply put, the dps wasn’t good or coordinated enough, and only after the third time that I had zombies on me while DPS failed to kill a berserker and the poison came up (so all three effects at once) did I say, “Sorry,” and drop.

I didn’t do the dailies, but I considered it, which is more than I had done recently.  I also updated some of my gear, enchants, and whatnot to make myself more “ready” should something fall in my lap.  Since one of my buddies was in BWD over the weekend (though he didn’t respond when I asked him about it), I may be shifting over soon.

Until then, I’ve decided to do something ostentatious.  I’m putting in black and white so that if I renege (I had to look that one up) on it, I’ll have to do so publicly.  I call it the 10 x 85 goal, to have a level 85 of each class before the next expansion.

This isn’t too unheard of, of course.  Nearly every PuG you criticize claims to have an 85 of every class, so apparently lots of people have done this.  More seriously, though, there are alt connoisseurs who have done it, though not anyone I know personally.  I had avoided the “Great Alt Debate of ’11” because I knew that in the end, it all comes down to play style and preference, but here’s my answer: I like alts.  It allows me to go back and play in the kiddy pool (that may come out creepier than I mean it to) and avoid the grown-up stresses of end game.  It teaches me the value of each class, the strengths, the weaknesses, and the special abilities.

I certainly understand the draw of focusing on only one character.  It gives you time to experiment and nigh-perfect the PvE rotations, the PvP environment, achievements, professions, and the like.  I spent a lot of time on Paladi before I made my first alt (although, to be fair, Paladi was an alt on a new server, at first), so I wholeheartedly admit that there’s merits to both sides of the debate.  I like alts, though, so “Bleh” (to use a Peanuts word).

So there it is.  I want to have an 85 of each class before the next expansion.  I have a goal in mind, and a timeframe in which to do it.  I hope this will reinvigorate my feeling about the game, though I’m well aware it may have the opposite effect.  Since my goal is just to have them, not to raid or for them to be perfect, I can mix and match race, starting zone, and class to my liking, providing benefits to guilds who are missing certain race/class combos.  I can also experiment with different types of leveling via questing, PvP, dungeons, and so on.

I’m off to a good start already.  Here’s a list of where I’m sitting:
Paladin – 85
Druid – 85
Mage – 85
Warlock – 81
Priest – 80
Rogue – 71
Shaman – 71
Death Knight – 71
Hunter – 41
Warrior – 13 (ugh)
So all told, I have to earn 167 levels, less than leveling two full characters.  Of course, the later levels are longer than the earlier, so really it’s not scaled that way, but still.  It’s a goal.

On that note, dear reader, anyone who’s done things like this or just has some ideas of how to spice it up, I’m looking for suggestions.  Fun combinations, little challenges (like permadeath – by the way, they made those sharks level 15.  Jerks.), interesting “don’t skip” zones, anything really, that could help me along the way would be much appreciated.

Sincerely,

Stubborn (3 down, 7 to go.)

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. Ralthrus permalink
    July 18, 2011 7:55 pm

    AH!! I shall join you in this adventure!

    Although I raid three days a week I’ll try to play along so you have a “partner.”

    I have
    85- Pally
    85- Rogue
    83- Shaman
    83- DK
    35- Druid

    Everything else doesn’t really matter….

    I will catch up though!

    • July 19, 2011 4:19 pm

      Well, I appreciate the company. I’ve not off to much of a start, as I spent last night watching Harry Potter movies with (for) my wife, and tonight I have to go to bed early for an interview tomorrow (more in today’s post). However, Weds night I’m going to be off and running!

  2. July 19, 2011 4:30 am

    Shintar (priest with a cause) has plenty of alt-rediscovery posts on her blog, have a look sometime.

    and if i didn’t perceive alts to be such a fundamental part (or symptom) of WoW’s overall issues, I’d almost envy you – at least you feel you have something “to do” still in the game. it’s considerably harder to feel that way with only 1 accomplished character – and even if you are making up for lacking content that way, self-created challenged can be fun. 🙂
    and that is the nicest thing I’ll ever have to say on this topic, ha ha!!

    ^^

    • July 19, 2011 4:21 pm

      Thanks for the suggestion; I’ll definitely check her site for more information.
      Also, I agree that alts are a symptom of the “play more, not better” approach WoW’s taken in the last expansion (and somewhat before that, but not as much). Like you point out, this is more of a reason to keep playing than a good use of play time.

  3. Arctica permalink
    July 19, 2011 7:04 am

    My progress:

    85 – Mage
    85 – Warrior
    85 – Druid
    85 – Hunter
    85 – Priest
    85 – Paladin
    60 – Death Knight
    50 – Rogue
    47 – Shaman
    25 – Warlock

    My observations/strategies:

    I use full heirlooms and guild perks.
    I do not PvP.
    I do not level professions until max level.
    If the class can tank, I level exclusively via Dungeon Finder.
    I prefer it to questing and it saves on travel time (as soon
    as I log in, I can be gaining experience).
    If the class can heal, I have teamed up with a tank and
    leveled exclusively via Dungeon Finder. If my partner isn’t
    in game, I work on other alts and let the rest xp accumulate.

    If I do decide to quest, I only focus on the zones I am
    very familiar with and prefer – and skip zones (and quest) which
    I dislike. I also use the Have Guild, Will Travel perk by having a
    guilded 85 quickly fly to the zone I need to be at and summon
    me there to save on lowbie travel time.

    1-57 is a breeze. 57-68 isn’t bad for me because I enjoy Outlands,
    especially Nagrand. 68 – 80 and the Northrend experience I am completely
    burnt out on however. Leveling speed drops considerably, you
    get the same dungeon over and over again if you’re going that route,
    and I have tired of the questing zones of Northrend. I become
    reinvigorated at 80 and Cataclysm because leveling speeds up again,
    I like the zones, the gear is always an upgrade and the loot/gold gained
    is impressive.

    And that’s my story : )

    • July 19, 2011 4:38 pm

      WoW! That’s a lot of excellent information, which I greatly appreciate. I have only been lucky enough on one server to be able to use heirlooms, though I’ve used guild perks on my last several toons (my mage and shammy, mostly). I will certainly attempt to use them on my next toons, though. In fact, I’ve wondered why Blizz doesn’t just make 1 set of leveling gear per relevant stat, since the armor can chagne type as you level anyway (leather becomes mail, for example). That would save on having to purchase cloth vs. leather int gear, for example, or… well… I’m not sure there is another example, since agi is all leather and str levels up automatically. I guess that says something about the character’s I’ve been leveling.

      Also, I’ve always taken double gathering since the nodes give XP now; have you found that to be ineffective, or do you just mean don’t bother with a crafting profession (which I agree with)?

      Also, I enjoy outlands, too, though I may change my toon when I get to numbers 8 or 9 going through there (mercifully I’m mostly through). Since I double gather, I always have the money for a flying mount, which speeds things up greatly, and even though it’s the “oldest” content now, I think you can see a move towards the streamlining in quest zones we’ve seen more since then. There’s virtually no “go to another zone” quests (a few in HP I think, but that’s all), and those can be easily avoided.

      Anyway, thanks for all the tips, and I look forward to trying to catch up to you. It seems you have quite a head start (;

    • Arctica permalink
      July 19, 2011 7:55 pm

      I have a lot of bonuses from having played the game as long as I have, having all the heirlooms and all my toons on the same server, with max level professions (my own mini economy of JC/Mining/Herbing/Enchant/Tailoring/Inscription/Blacksmithing) that keep the gold coming in for my alt’s mounts

      I am under the impression double gathering professions would certainly be a boost of XP, I have just never have the patience for it because you out level zones so fast you are forced to go back and solely herb/mine just to keep it current and that time expense may actually slow the process down. Also, I do the dungeon finder so often and that’s not conducive to gathering professions.

      Your point on the heirlooms I agree with completely.
      1 caster set that conformed to your armor type would be ideal.
      Over the years I’ve accumulated every single heirloom but some are so class/spec specific it’s pretty silly.

      Good luck on your project and thanks for the blogs : )

    • July 20, 2011 1:46 pm

      You’re right about having to make an effort to level some of them, though I’ve mostly found that to be the case with mining, as herbs are freaking everywhere now. I think the ease with which you can level in dungeons really makes it difficult to keep your prof’s up, too. I wonder, though, if my only goal is to have the toons whether or not it’s even logical to level a profession at all.

      Thanks again for the input!

  4. Nina permalink
    July 19, 2011 8:42 am

    You don’t say what faction those are on – makes a difference when listing ‘don’t skip’ zones.

    • July 19, 2011 4:23 pm

      You’re quite right; it does. However, I didn’t say it, because I’m open to both. I”m leveling Allies on two servers already and have horde on two other servers, so I don’t discriminate. Any suggestions at all would be welcome.

  5. July 22, 2011 2:29 am

    I can make no higher recommendation than Protection Warrior.

    Apart from the fact that tanks at low levels are ridiculously overpowered and you can practically solo instances if you know what you’re doing, Protection has some of the most fun tools in the game, and insane AoE with Blood and Thunder many, many level before other classes get their big AoE abilities.

    • July 25, 2011 10:17 am

      I’ve always really enjoyed tanking, so I’ll definitely take your suggestion. I have a warrior at level 13, but was headed down the fury tree, as I’d heard it was “best” for leveling. Now that you mention it, though, I’ve usually leveled tank toons as tanks, so I’ll look into it. Thanks!

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  1. 10×85 Analysis: An Introduction « Sheep The Diamond

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