Deckswabber to Swashbuckler

In honor of Zug Gaming’s Help a Noob Day, I’m going to spend some time today discussing various things newer players who have recently reached or are nearing the level cap prepare for life after leveling.  We’ve still got some time left in this expansion before the next one hits, so a lot of this will be geared toward preparation for Cataclysm.

If you’re completely new to the game, and you want to level a Rogue, I’ve actually covered that before, so I would recommend you start here.  It’s an in-depth look at the basics of the class, and if you follow the links at the end of each post, you can find guides that will get you from 1-80.  Also, I do have an email set up specifically for answering questions, so hit that link on the sidebar if you need any help.

And now, it’s time to stop Swabbin’ the deck, and start Buckling the Swash.

- Deckswabber to Swashbuckler -

So…you’ve just dinged level 80, or are about to, and you’re not quite sure what to do.  There are quite a few end game options for you ranging from PvP, PvE, Crafting, Auctioneering, etc.  It can be a bit overwhelming to realize that the game truly begins when you hit max level.  My first bit of advice would be to find the aspect of the game you enjoy most.   

Once you’ve decided what you want to get out of the game, your next step is to find a guild that will support the type of gameplay you like.  You may already be in a guild that fits that description, and if that’s the case you’re set.  If, however, you are not in a guild or the guild you are in doesn’t suit your gaming needs, it’s time to go shopping.  Ask anyone you know on your server about guilds that might suit your needs and keep an eye out in the trade channel.    

When you find a guild that might be a good fit, try to track down an officer from that guild.  Introduce yourself and state that you are potentially interested in joining their guild.  It’s likely that they will have questions for you or they will redirect you to another officer who will.  Answer any questions they may have for you politely and honestly.  More importantly, ask a few questions about what the guild is like and any related to what you want to get out of the game. 

Sometimes, it won’t work out, but with luck, you’ll want to join them and they’ll want you to join them.  If you are leaving a guild, politely let your guild know before you leave; it’s a courtesy that some people overlook.  Once you’re in the new guild, don’t be afraid to introduce yourself or offer up your help and services when members ask in guild chat.  This is by far the quickest way to establish yourself as a member, and not “the new guy (or gal).” 

Beyond finding your gameplay niche and a guild, the rest of my advice is some simple and solid advice for stepping up your game and potentially enjoying it more:

1.) If you’re poor, changing a few habits can make you rich quickly.

  • If you don’t have two professions leveled to (or close to) 450, that should be your first priority.  Hopefully you’ve got a gathering profession that feeds your crafting profession.  If not, it might not be a bad idea to drop one of your professions and get a gathering profession that feeds the one you keep.  In addition to keeping you from spending money on the items you can craft yourself, you can sell your excess stuff on the AH to make more money.
  • The more money you spend, the less you will make.  While that statement might seem simple, it’s true.  You’d be surprised how much money you spend in-game daily.  If you get everything you need on the auction house, you’re throwing away money.  Try and find a friend that you can trade your own goods with, or that will sell you stuff cheaper.
  • Do your daily quests daily.  Seriously.  If  you only do the Argent Tournament dailies, you’ll easily make over 100 gold in 30 minutes just questing (once you get all the quests unlocked).  If you do that,  a few other daily quests and a random dungeon or two, you’ll be looking at close to 500 gold for little effort.
  • Finish any quests you haven’t done in Northrend.  Assuming that you’ve got at least two zones left to clear, you’ll make several thousand gold in the process.

2.)  Research your class.

  • Find a friend or information source on the internet that clearly explains the basics of how your class is supposed to be played, what gear you should be looking for and what augments (gems/enchants) you should put on that gear.
  • Once you have enough money, make sure your gear is reasonably gemmed and enchanted.  You certainly don’t have to have all of the best gems and enchants on your gear, but having good ones will make a huge difference.  You can worry about the high-end stuff when you’ve got the money and the gear you need for them.
  • If you prefer PvE, find out what the best abilities are to use for your role.  If you are Tank or DPS, this means a rotation of abilities or a priority list.  For healers it is more about learning which spells to cast in what situations.  Regardless, take this knowledge into random dungeons and practice.

3.)  Focus on one Character (Main) , but level a few others (Alts) on the side.

  • If you level different classes, it can help you to better understand your how your Main character fits into the mix for group play.  This is especially true when you level a class to use in a different role than the one that you normally play.
  • Leveling Alts on the same server as your Main provides you the opportunity to have more max level professions, and can both save you money as well as generate it.  I have seven level 80 characters and every profession covered.  Yes, that means I’m crazy, and I’m not telling you to go out and do the same.  That said, I can make anything I need, and I never need to buy things from the Auction House.
  • A potential side effect of leveling a few alts is that you may discover that you like the gameplay of one of them as  much or more than your main.  If you this happens, don’t be afraid to focus on that character instead, even if it means a little extra work to get that character up to speed with gear, gems and enchants.

4.)  Create a Bank Alt.

  • Roll a character on the server your Main is on and level it to level 10; anything character under level 10 generally will not be restored in the event of your account getting hacked.  Set your hearth to the closest inn to the bank in the major city of your choice.
  • Send this toon enough money to purchase all of the extra slots in their personal bank, and send them the largest 10 bags you can.  Even with 16 slot bags, you’ll be increasing your space from 16 inventory and 28 bank slots to 80 inventory slots and 124 bank slots. 
  • Keep enough mats on your characters for day to day crafting, but send everything else to your Bank alt.  This will should open up a ton of space on your other characters and you won’t feel that you bags are always full.  Also, this should allow you to see when you have way too much of something; make a trip to the Auction House and sell your excess for just under what the item is going for currently.

5.) Set achievable goals for yourself, both long-term and short-term.

  • Without direction in WoW, it can feel as if there’s no point to logging on.  Having something to work toward, whether it’s something you can do in 5 minutes or something that might take 5 months, gives you a purpose in what you do.
  • Pick a long-term goal that will take you a while to accomplish; there are many achievements that fit this description.  Break down your goal in to sub goals and if possible, break those down into smaller goals.  If you only worry about the small pieces of the total goal one at a time, you will be able to focus on each individual part, and clearly see your progress as you go. 

For instance, the Loremaster (my current big goal) is an achievement for completing just about every quest in the game.  I split this up into completing one zone at a time (smaller goals), and after 4 weeks, I’ve only got about 100 quests to go.  I’ve done over 1,000 quests in that time, and had I looked at it as “you’ve got to do 1200 quests,” I may have gotten discouraged and done something else. 

The bottom line…

Find what makes this game fun for you and figure out the things you need to work on to play the game your way.  There’s an abundance of resources out there, and plenty of friendly people to help you.  I hope that the advice I’ve given here is of use to you, and again, if you need any clarification or other help, shoot me an email.  Also, if any veterans of the game have read this article and have any further advice, throw it in the comments section.

- Sam

8 Responses to Deckswabber to Swashbuckler

  1. wrthofnino says:

    Well said sir! Very nice post :)

  2. cold says:

    I too have 7 level 80s and all professions maxed. Does that make me crazy too?

  3. MissMediocre says:

    7 level 80s isn’t crazy! It’s dedicated and experienced! Very nice post, I like that you covered things to do for a level 80 noob! That “The more money you spend, the less you will make” line is great, it’s scary how fast and how easily you can spend gold, especially as a new level 80! I only started making gold when I started looking at how much I was actually spending, and stopped, lol.

  4. Anslym says:

    “Sometimes, it won’t work out, but with luck, you’ll want to join them and they’ll want you to join them”

    Or they really want you to leave . . .

    “don’t be afraid to introduce yourself”

    So the guild can have a mass exodus . . . .

    “1.) If you’re poor, changing a few habits can make you rich quickly.”

    Or borrow gold that you have no way to repay . . .

    “2.) Research your class.”

    Didn’t need to, A shadow priest with spirit of redemption is completely viable . . .

    This message brought to you by “Fail shadow priest” coming to a guild near you!

    -Anslym

  5. samueltempus says:

    Cold and MisMediocre,

    Yea, I don’t think it’s crazy to have 7 80’s but someone who only has 1 might find it so.

    Greg (not Anslym’s real name, but an inside joke),

    You’re crazy, but that part about you as a fail shadow priest isn’t too far off.

    – Sam

  6. Pingback: Cataclsym Guild Changes (spoiler-free) «

  7. Locamotive says:

    Sam-
    I have read about everything you have and I love to read your blog. I also have a new blog that I started with some common questions and my own exp on being a Rogue in WoW. The big question I have I guess would be ArP or AP in a combat build? Spreadsheets say onething and players say another. I posted on my blog more information on this question if you have time to check it out if not anything in your spare time would be greatly appericiated. sorry about my blog if you visit BTW I just built it today and I have limited access to websites from where I work..

    http://roguerespect.wordpress.com/

    Thanks in advance for your advice

  8. samueltempus says:

    Honestly, with the 4.0 supposedly hitting in a week, and Cataclysm hitting in a few months, it’s something that’s still in up in the air. I personally only have combat as an offspec currently, and all of my gear is set up of Assassination. I’ll take a look at your post though and see if I have any bits of wisdom to send your way.

    – Sam

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