Monday, February 23, 2009

Horde Leveling Addon Speed - Chapter 1

After consulting with Jame, I have decided to do my own series on leveling speed with the new addon, but for the Horde side.

Today I tested Zerinj's Durotar guide on an orc shaman, who happens to be named Mokrana (Mokra, my usual shaman name, was taken >.< ). While leveling, I'm also following Trollvink's Shaman Leveling tips. The end result:

Zerinj's Durotar Guide 1-12: 4h 14min
= 21min/level

I was actually within a few XP of dinging 12 at this point, but so close that someone could easily have made it to 12 had they killed a couple more mobs. I tend to avoid non-quest mobs like the plague, so I figure it's okay to assume level 12 at that point.

After seeing Jame's results, I was actually very dissapointed with this - it took over an hour longer than the human starting area. There are several possible reasons for this:
  • The human starting area may be simply a better place to level. I know there are some pretty irritating quests in Durotar, such as the Echo Isles, Dark Storms, and the Skull Rock quests.
  • A Paladin may be easier to level from 1-10 than a Shaman. I did take about 15-20 minutes to do some shaman quests, but the paladin probably had paladin quests to do too.
  • Jame may just be a better player than me!
Like Jame, I tried to make this character as realistic to what someone would actually be playing as possible, but also a "worst case" sort of character. To this end:
  • I started on a fresh server, with zero twinking of any kind.
  • I purposefully logged out outside of an inn, so I had zero rested XP.
  • I played like a reckless noob! I actually died several times, mostly during the Dark Storms and Skull rock quests.
  • I leveled two gathering professions as I went, and also cooking. I actually want to use this character someday and I don't want her professions gimped! This seems reallistic enough as well, and probably added a decent chunk of time to my leveling.
Here are some screen shots of Mokrana in her journey to level 12:

Level 6 - Valley of Trials Complete

Level 10 - Achievement
2hr 32min

Level 12 - Durotar Guide Complete
4h 14min

All in all, this isn't bad, but it isn't really as good as I had hoped. I disliked the bit of grinding that was required by the guide at certain points, and I know there is a little of that in the Barrens guide as well. We'll have to see how that goes.

I hope to do a speed test of the Barrens guide next, but that won't be for another couple weeks.


  1. Haha, how dare you make fun of me with the "[b]Reckless Noob[/b]" in bold!

    4h is actually amazing considering all the handicaps you put on yourself:

    -Paladins totally own shamans in leveling speed in the lower levels.
    -The shaman totem quests are a huge waste of time. Paladins quest are from Elwynn Forest do not slow you down at all.
    -Leveling 2! Professions and cooking? Madness!

    I think that when the whole guide is revamped, and when I get some time to myself, I'll do a speed run of my own, using a hunter and not leveling any tradeskill, logging off inside inns, just to see how it compares to Joana's leveling speed ;)

    Because hey, it's not fair to compare our guides to his if we handicap ourselves so much!

    Anyway, great post Ji, looking forward to the next!

  2. Hah, well it's not much of a "handicap" really, because I think most people want to level at least a couple gathering profs. The gathering ones don't take up too much time, especially skinning. Herbalism only takes a little time. I'm not doing first aid since I can heal myself, but cooking helps with buffs - it's the only one I could see taking much time.

  3. Fishing is the time waster. But I usually level it. What I tend to do is watch a movie or catch up on my online reading (2 monitors) while fishing.

  4. Heh, well fishing would add hours upon hours to the guide, and it's something that can easily be leveled later on while sitting in Orgrimmar. So I won't be including it here, but it is a good thing to do while leveling, especially if it's your first character on a server.

  5. I have been wanting to try this addon out for a few weeks now (I needed to get my priest to 80 first though) and so far this looks very encouraging. I seem to recall it taking about 4 hours to reach level 10 so this is quite an improvement over that. I look forward to seeing your next update.

  6. Hello Jiyambi, this is my first post here. I decided to follow your blog because I was really impressed by your blog posts. I have also a personal curiosity here because I am a horde player and thus I'd love to see how that leveling guide progress throught levels.

    So far, the results are good. Considering the things you have already pointed out, the time is very good. It's the time that I need to level to 10 without including the level 10 class quests, I see a nice improvement here! Than, the choice to take professions will show a more realistic test, because most of the players want to level fast without leaving behind the professions. I'm not saying that Jame is doing a mistake, because he worte that he want to do a real speed testing, and thus no professions is the way to go. Your way of leveling will show a competitive time, I'm sure, that for other guides it's impossible to match if you consider the professions.

    I agree on the fact that skinning takes no time and you always end ahead of the mobs (I.E.: you will have 300/300 skinning around level 50, which is way before Outlands) and Herbalism is not time consuming. Mining is a bit tedious in the 75-115 bracket, becasue there is a general lack of tin/iron veins and you have to head to specific areas in order to level the professions. But, once at 125 it will be as easy as herbalism.

    Last thing, thumbs up for your interface. I just don't see the arrow and the exp. bar, but despite those details is very good. I wish you to breeze through the levels :)

    ~Benhir (of wow-pro,yep).

  7. Oh, hey Benhir! A note on the interface - the arrow from the guide appears in the center of the screen, it just happened to be missing in those shots since I was either standing on the NPC or had just moved away from him/her.

    As for the XP bar, I have it faded until I mouse over it. Just makes my screen feel cleaner to me :)

  8. Shaman was a brave choice of class to level. I just got done levelling a paladin not long ago, and I can tell you that as retribution you do much better than most classes. The combination of relying on a weapon rather than on spells (the switch to base mana costs really made levelling a caster annoying) and Judgements of the Wise when you get it means you can pummel through mobs without ever needing a break.

    The problem with shaman is simply the totem quests. These quests are all horrifically long and annoying to do, you will lose hours simply by getting your totems, so as these characters grow yours will drop further and further behind i'm afraid!

    And please please please, don't move onto the barrens guide just yet. :( it's old and needs a ton of reworking. The change in exp gain, the added flight point to Ratchet (yes, it's that old. :( ) and the fact that everyone seemed to struggle on the Kolkar Leaders quest has made it clear to me that the guide is bad. I've been meaning to re-think the route but never had a character sitting waiting to go, nor the inclination, but with a little time before ulduar, and addons needing to be written, i might redo it.

    Good luck with the shammy!

  9. -cough-

    <-- Hosho. Sorry, I forgot to sign it. =/

  10. Heh, I know what you are talking about for Pallies, I'm leveling one now and I love it! But I needed to test the Durotar starting area and Pallies can't do that :( So I went with a shammy. I am going to try to weave the totem quests in with the rest of the guide as best I can. It might mean taking longer to get the totems than usual, but that's really okay since I pretty much never use totems unless fighting an especially strong mob.

    I'll go ahead and wait to do the speed testing. I think I have the most recent file I've been working on uploaded at the moment, if you would like to revise that along with your paper guide. I actually find working with the guides in code form really really easy, as the steps are so clearly set out line by line. So feel free to work with it.

    Anyways thanks for the comment!

  11. Hey thanks for working on this addon for the guide. It's good, but not as good as the human guide is. At the very beginning I think you should add a note that tells players to kill the boars until getting to level 2 before taking on Sarkoth. I died pretty quick as a level 1 hunter.

  12. I tried the first 6 lvl a week ago, and i was quite a bit into lvl 2 when i finished the boars. Don't know what happened to you.

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