So both my priest and my mage are now slogging through Northrend, and I had forgotten what slow going questing through there can be. In reality, because I've been leveling these last four toons simultaneously, I haven't really done much questing in Northrend since early February. While I love how the quests fit together so much more nicely, particularly than Azeroth, I had forgotten how much slower it goes.
I'm averaging somewhere right around 450-550,000 xp per hour questing on both toons, so it's actually a pretty decent pace of a level every 3 hours or so. There are some areas where I can get it up a little bit higher than that, which helps. I tried a few instances on my mage just to make sure that nothing had changed about my xp per hour calculations on Northrend instances and it still consistently drops my xp per hour down to around 300,000 while running instances (and that is generally with rested xp - if you're running without rested xp, expect something even south of that).
While I tend to go back and forth quite a bit, I have to say that right now the mage is probably my favorite and if I had to pick just one to finish the rest of the way, it would probably be the mage. Maybe it is because my original main was a warlock, so the style of play just feels familiar. But I believe it is because of the speed at which the mage just tears through everything in sight.
I've also been distracted by all of the news and information coming out about Cataclysm and tinkering with the new 31 point talent trees. I do think almost all of these changes are going to be a huge benefit to people leveling toons from scratch as the new abilities granted, particularly on what are normally considered good leveling specs, are all things that can make a big difference at early levels. The only one that I'm not so sure about so far is Intimidation for Beast Mastery hunters. I've actually taken a look at the Survival tree, and given some of the interesting new talents in there, there could actually be a case made for leveling as Survival rather than Beast Mastery, utilizing traps to handle multiple mob pulls.
The thought of a bunch of level 10 warlocks running around with their Felguards just seems crazy. And getting Mangle at level 10 as a leveling druid. Be still my heart! I'm also very curious to see how the Holy Power feature works out for Paladins. Having some extra burst while leveling always helps. Plus, it's always fun to have more to keep track of and more buttons to push. I might have to start over with a toon from each class on the alliance side just to experience the thrills! (This is where the men in white coats show up to have a little chat with me).
So, as an overall update, the Rogue made it to level 63 in Outland. My Shadow Priest is at level 71 and is almost finished with Borean Tundra and my Frost Mage is at level 70 working her way through Borean Tundra. I'll be heading back to the Shaman later in the week for the final push to Northrend on the Shaman.
Still on track for some time in late August or early September to have all of these done.
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