With the release of World of Warcraft: Classic around the corner, decisions need to be made. Classic is a lot less alt friendly than retail, professions matter a lot more. Even the chosen race can have a huge impact on your in-game experience.
The first question that we need to answer is the most basic of all: Horde or Alliance? Seems simple enough, right? There’s only two choices but it’s also what’s going to impact the Classic experience the most. I’ve always played Alliance, it was only in late Legion when I made a Horde alt for the experience of leveling through the Horde content and gearing up through Dungeons and Mythic+.
The content available to us is also a lot more faction based than in most of the expansions. In that regard, Classic compares the most to Battle for Azeroth, where both factions have their own part of the world and are restricted there for the largest part of the content. It is only in the later content where we will spend some more time on the other continent.
At first, I was tempted to go through Classic as Horde, but with almost everyone I know intending to play Alliance, the decision was pretty much made for me. After all, playing Classic on your own without your friends is not fun at all!
Race and Class
There are several good reasons why we need to decide race and class at the same time. First of all, in the pre-Cataclysm era, there are a lot less race/class combinations than we have now. There are a less races. There are less classes. No Death Knights, no Monks, no Demon Hunters. Pandaren, Draenei, Blood Elves, Goblins, Worgen and the whole range of Allied Races … NOPE.
Oh yeah and Alliance doesn’t get Shamans and there will be no Horde Paladins! Faction locked classes … that was a thing back then! Each faction has access to 4 races and 8 classes.
The second consideration to make is the racial stats and traits. Each race has different starting stats, racial traits for some classes even unique class abilities.
The base stats are not huge, but they still make a difference. Let’s take an Alliance Hunter for example. We can choose between a Dwarf and a Night Elf, our primary stat is Agility of which the Dwarf starts with 16 and the Night Elf gets 25. That’s only 9 Agility I hear your say, but do keep in mind 9 Agility is even more than Greater Agility !
So racial stats matter, but so do traits. Humans make excellent Priests due to The Human Spirit and Gnomes excel as casters because of their high base Intelligence and Expansive Mind.
But wait! There’s more! In some cases, most notably the Priests and the Paladins, different races get different class abilities. The best example of that is Fear Ward, uniquely available to Dwarf Priests and a very powerful tool in end-game content and almost indispensable in PvP!
It is getting really hard to pick something to play. Of course we all want to play something we will enjoy and honestly that’s the only factor that should matter. But we also want to be able to perform to the best of our abilities in end-game content right? Imagine how much it would suck to be declined for a Dungeon run just because you’re a Night Elf Priest and not a Dwarf. For those thinking that won’t be the case, I sincerely hope you’re right, but way back when, that was the case all too often!
Another thing to keep in mind is the starting areas. Especially for Night Elves and Undead, who start on the other continent as the other races of their faction. Getting to your friends can be quite a time consuming endeavor. Again, this is not game breaking, but if you’re the only Undead in a group of Orcs and Trolls, getting to them is going to take a while and will involve a lot of corpse running.
Ultimately, I don’t take Classic too seriously. I’m definitely not going to min/max. That being said, I decided on a Gnome Warlock. I never played a Warlock, so that’s something new. They have amazing solo leveling capabilities and perform amazingly in end-game PvE, which is where it matters for me.
Right, so we have ourselves a Gnome Warlock, now all we need to do is figure out which professions to level.
As a caster, there’s the obvious option of Tailoring/Enchanting. They work very well together, since Tailoring doesn’t need a separate gathering profession and you can disenchant all the cloth gear you make to help level up Enchanting.
Our second option is Herbalism/Alchemy. Always popular and a great money maker due to the continuous demand of potions and flasks. Only drawback is that in the end game, gathering herbs is quite a chore. Herbs are less abundant than what we’re used to and we will not have the luxury of flying to speedfarm them.
What about Mining/Engineering? After all, as a Gnome it’s only fitting we dabble in bombs, mines, exploding chickens and all sorts of other things that go *BOOM*! While the fun factor of having all those explosives at your disposal cannot be denied, in the end-game, Engineering has little to offer to a caster. Most Hunters will pick Engineering for their ammo, but practitioners of the dark magics will find the profession less desirable. On top of that, it’s one of the most expensive professions to level, due to the heavy reliance on gemstones. No Jewelcrafting in Classic means no prospecting ores and the standard drop rates for gemstones are quite low.
There is always the option of going dual gatherer, relying on other people to craft what we need and sell whatever surplus we have for a nice bit of gold. All three gathering professions have great moneymaking potential, but if you’re going dual gatherer, I would recommend Herbalism/Skinning.
Ultimately, I decided on Tailoring/Enchanting. Tailoring will certainly help with gearing up, even in end game, while enchanting will assure a steady income.
With all the big decisions made, I’m totally ready for when Classic goes live! In the guild, we settled on Mirage Raceway, EU PvE realm. My character will be named Mortenebra or Deneghra (still haven’t figured the name yet), so if you see me out and about, say hi!
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