Friday, April 2, 2010

Old sensations

Leveling the new chars in SAN has brought back old memories. Usually painful ones since I was used to the comfort that a level 80 armed to the teeth gives you. Good gear, all the class skills available, fast mounts (including flying ones), big bags, plenty of money... all of that disappears when you start leveling a new character in a new realm (although you can cheat a bit by making a deathknight to get some starting gear and money easily)

- Sills. Until level 20 or so your skills won't matter much. You can play any role if you go into a dungeon. Verech tanked RFC at level 12 or so... without any aggro generating skills and using Arcane Torrent to pull groups
- Walking. You'll spend a lot of time walking from one side to another. Nowadays things are much easier since you can get a mount at level 20 (and won't cost you a small fortune like in the old times) Still the lack of "quest-hub design" will make you visit the same place several times. Yesterday night Verech had to cross Arathi Highlands from one side (Hammerfall) to another (Stromgarde) three frigging times! in order to complete the sigil questline. Horse helped, but I couldn't help but feel angry since everytime had to clear the way of mobs I just killed some minutes ago to get to the new target
- Fleeing mobs. This is one of the worst ones. I had almost forgot mobs could flee from you. At low levels almost all humanoids flee from you when theyreach 20% health. And it's a pain chasing them to avoid they call some friends to dance on your face. Some classes like paladin got some good tools to prevent the cowards from getting away (Judgement of Justice, Hammer of Justice) but other ones aren't so lucky
- Survivality. An hybrid class with mail armour is easier to keep alive and level than a pure dps wearing cloth. Thanks to several nerfs introduced in the game (eliminating almost all elites outside instances, better hp & mana recovery, tanking classes doing more damage, etc) some quests can be easily facerolled by some classes. In the old vanilla WoW I would have never been able to kill elites with 2 or 3 levels above me or normal mobs with 5 levels above me unless I'd be very lucky (I'm talking about soloing btw) with a prot paladin. Now it's maybe too easy. Other classes, specially ranged ones who don't have a "tank" will suffer more (mage, balance druid) to achieve it even if you're good at kiting due to the lack of skills and spells at these levels
- Reputation. I still remember my first exalted reputation took ages. Back in the days your rep gain depnded on your level, so completing low level quests for reputation yielded very feew reputation and runecloth grinding was th eonly stable way of getting rep with major cities. Although this was changed long ago (giving now a fixed rep quantity) I find it amusing I got my first one before level 30
- Leveling. this is also an old change but with every expansion it has been modified. In the old vanilla days getting to 40 required a good investment in time play. Now in 3 weeks dedicating some time will get you there. Not a bad change but can't help to feel sad seeing how much took me to get to 40 my mains.
- Gear. Wrath finally hit the nail on the head with quest rewards in form of gear. Now you get an object that will suit your class/role most of the times, but in vanilla WoW, until Cataclysm comes, you're still presented with very poor rewards (unless it's some former elite quest), both in number (two options max to choose from) and usefulness (plate with agi and spirit and things like that)

It's good to do all the journey from start, but as I level I think it's going too fast. On one hand I prefer it this way. Low levels (specially when soloing) can be a pain when lacking so many skills and spells and travelling back and forth to the same place again and again (not to mention those pesky quests that make you travel all around the world, hopping from one continent to the other and back thousandfold). On the other hand I feel I'm maybe losing many things behind... but I won't complain, I can always level another toon :)

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