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Paladin Leveling: 70-85 Protection

Here we are now in the final stretch, finishing up Wrath content and both starting and finishing Cataclysm leveling content as you prepare for your gear and reputation grinds as you strive to get your gear improved enough for heroics and eventually raids as well.

This guide will get you all the way to the level cap so you’ll have all of your spells and talents available to you at the end of this. If you aren’t already familiar with your various cooldowns and buffs, then now is the time to learn them. Go queue yourself up for a random dungeon and make a point of using all of your cooldowns at some point. If you’re still under level 81 then queue for Wrath dungeons so that you don’t have to worry about new mechanics just yet, and focus on learning how and when to use the spells you may have been ignoring up to this point.

As always, remember that my guides are focused on getting you leveled up. I’m not here to get you ready for raiding, that’s for other bloggers who focus specifically on certain classes and the raiding aspect of the game.

Playing a Protection Paladin
So now you’re in Northrend level content and moving up towards Cataclysm content and the level cap. As far as playing your Prot Pally goes there’s not much difference at all, save that Northrend mobs are harder than Outlands mobs and Cataclysm mobs are harder than Northrend mobs. You can still do big AoE pulls in all the content you’ll level through in this range, though I suggest you go back to starting with small pulls of 2-4 until you get a feel for the mobs and then work your way up to bigger groups.

Questing as Prot is both simple and effective. Keep on doing what you’ve been doing the whole time, keep an eye on your health when you enter new areas so you know what to expect in the way of healing and pulling, but otherwise just have at it.

If you’re looking for specs, rotations, gear guides, and so forth for getting into heroics and raids, then I direct you to Righteous Defense, a blog written by my buddy @Rhidach, who I consider my go-to source for end game Paladin information.

Protection-Specific Tips
I don’t have much in the way of specific tips for you in this level range other than I love taking advantage of kill quests to use my AoE. I didn’t have any trouble at all with Northrend group quests until I got to the last couple of levels in Northrend, there’s one Group 5 quest in Ice Crown that I couldn’t handle at 78. Not a big deal, I just skipped it and went on to other quests.

As you get into Cataclysm you’ll notice a big jump in how powerful mobs are compared to how relatively weak your gear is if you’re leveling straight through and weren’t raiding in Wrath before. While not specific to Prot, I suggest you check the Auction House or your crafting alts to get yourself some Cataclysm gear from level 78 on. Get yourself a new set of armor, a new weapon, and a new shield. You should be able to get a couple of rings and a neck for fairly cheap since Jewelcrafters mass produce them to level their profession. A good weapon and shield are probably going to cost you a couple hundred gold each, but it’ll be worth it.

Important Spells & Abilities

Level 70-85:

  • Avenging Wrath: Increases all damage and healing caused by 20% for 20 sec.
  • Resistance Aura: Gives additional Fire, Frost and Shadow resistance to all party and raid members within 40 yards. Players may only have one Aura on them per Paladin at any one time.
  • Turn Evil: The targeted undead or demon enemy will be compelled to flee for up to 20 sec. Damage caused may interrupt the effect. Only one target can be turned at a time.
  • Hand of Sacrifice: Places a Hand on the party or raid member, transfering 30% damage taken to the caster. Lasts 12 sec or until the caster has transfered 100% of their maximum health. Players may only have one Hand on them per Paladin at any one time.
  • Mastery: Divine Bulwark: Increases your chance to block melee attacks by 18%. Each point of Mastery increases block chance by an additional 2.25%.
  • Inquisition: Consumes all Holy Power to increase your Holy Damage by 30%. Lasts 4 sec per charge of Holy Power consumed.
  • Divine Radiance: Heals all friendly targets within 0 yards for up to 683 every sec, with effectiveness diminishing on targets farther than 8 yards away and for each additional player target beyond 6. Lasts 10 sec.
  • Guardian of Ancient Kings: Summons an Ancient Guardian who reduces all damage taken by 50% for 12 seconds.

Avenging Wrath, at level 72, is what gives your Paladin their “wings”. It’s a flat 20% increase in damage and healing that you do. It’s a great buff and you should use it whenever you have the opportunity to do so, whether you’re solo questing or tanking.

Level 76 gives you Resistance Aura which is a pretty decent buff when used at the right now. If you’re in a situation where you’re going to take elemental damage and you don’t particularly need any of your other auras, then you might as well use this one. If you aren’t taking significant elemental damage though, I wouldn’t bother with it. As Protection Paladins we can take a melee style beating for days and just keep right on going, but we have very little resistance to Magic damage, so if you find yourself facing a lot of casters it might be a good idea to switch this baby on for a bit.

At level 78 you’re able to send the fear of righteousness into undead and demons thanks to Turn Evil. It’s a fear spell that can only target Undead and Demons, but at least it’s somewhat reliable CC when it can be used. There aren’t a whole lot of undead in Cataclysm, but there are some demons hanging around here and there. Honestly I only use this in AoE situations so that I can get a mob to socially agro his buddies for me. I leave the CC to other classes when I’m tanking.

At level 80 you get both Hand of Sacrifice and access to your Mastery, Divine Bulwark. Hand of Sacrifice is a great spell for saving the lives of your teammates by taking 30% of the damage they deal and directing it to yourself instead. The only time I cast this as a tank is when my healer is taking damage and my taunts are on cooldown. I use this a lot more during the rare moments I’m in a spec other than Prot. We make great use of our Mastery stat.

Level 81 sends in the (Spanish) Inquisition, our final method of burning Holy Power, this time to increase our Holy Damage. I’m not going to lie to you, I forget this thing exists constantly. It seems to me it’s more of a DPS spell, though it could of course be used for tanking as well. I generally don’t bother with it, but that’s me.

Level 83 brings Holy Radiance which is an AoE heal centered on you that heals for more the closer they are to you. I actually like using this as Prot, even though it’s a heal and my heals typically suck. It’s something I can cast during combat to add a little buffer to myself and the other melee DPS. When I talk about the 939 rotation down below, this is one of those spells I fit into a 9-slot that doesn’t typically belong there.

And finally, level 85 gives us Guardian of Ancient Kings, a spell that has a different effect based on your spec. For Prot that means we get 50% damage reduction for 12 seconds. It’s a great way to mitigate some damage and ease up the load on your healers, or to add some more survivability when you’re solo grinding large packs of mobs.

Leveling a Protection Paladin
Buffs List: Righteous Fury, Seal of Insight/Truth, Blessing of Might/Kings, Retribution/Devotion Aura
Multi-Target Rotation: Avenger’s Shield, Hammer of the Righteous, Holy Wrath, Hammer of the Righteous, Judgement, Hammer of the Righteous
Single-Target Rotation: Exorcism, Avenger’s Shield, Crusader Strike, Judgement, Crusader Strike, Holy Wrath, Crusader Strike, Shield of the Righteous
Boss Rotation 1: Avenger’s Shield, Judgement, Divine Plea, Shield of the Righteous, Crusader Strike, Holy Wrath, Crusader Strike, Judgement, Crusader Strike, Shield of the Righteous
Boss Rotation 2: Divine Plea, Shield of the Righteous, Crusader Strike, Judgement, Avenger’s Shield, Consecrate, Holy Wrath, “939”

The Buffs List contains the buffs you should have up at all times. You’ll notice that most of those have a This/That option as well. I tend to use Seal of Insight at all times while I’m leveling. Most mobs aren’t going to live long enough to make SoTruth worth it, and it’s better to keep your life and mana topped off instead. For Blessings I generally use Might when soloing and Kings when I’m in a group or a Battle Ground. The Aura is up to you, though I lean towards Retribution unless I’m taking a ton of damage.

The reason why the Boss Rotation 1 changes from everything else we’re doing is because you want to start off as strong as possible on the threat front. This is my own preference for boss fights, it’s how I like to handle them. Avenger’s Shield and Judgement give you a decent start on threat but the real kicker is using Divine Plea which your talents trigger to give you 3 Holy Power and Shield of the Righteousness burns those three for a big burst of threat as well. Doing this should put you far enough ahead of all your DPS that you won’t have to worry about them pulling off of you. Also, if you have your Avenger’s Shield cooldown reset from your talent procs go ahead and fit it in whenever you have a moment to do so.

Boss Rotation 2 brings up the mysterious Paladin rotation known as 939. Prior to 939 you’re building up your threat with various cooldowns and then settling into the 939 rotation. See the following section for details on what 939 is, and how to use it.

Understanding the 939 Rotation
939 – Those numbers more or less represent the cooldowns of your spells. The 9’s represent your longer cooldown attacks while the 3’s always represent Crusader Strike (single target) or Hammer of the Righteous (AoE). So the basic idea to do Special Attack > Crusader Strike > Special Attack, and repeat that over and over. That’s why Paladins are “so easy” to tank with, because they have a literal rotation and it’s easy to follow.

The easy part of 939 is remembering that you’re going to use Crusader Strike or Hammer of Righteousness every time they’re off cooldown, which will end up being every-other attack.

The “hard” part, which really isn’t hard, is remembering when to use your 9’s, which are all of your other special attacks. On one hand you could say to just use whatever happens to not be on cooldown and you’ll probably do just fine while you’re leveling. But the key to making 939 work, and work well, is knowing the priority of your 9’s.

Before you learn their priority, you probably need to know what the 9’s are: Judgement, Avenger’s Shield, Holy Wrath, and Shield of the Righteous. There are also a couple of spells that can fill the 9’s slot that don’t have a dedicated place in the rotation and instead are used as needed in a 9 slot: Word of Glory, Consecration, Hammer of Wrath, Hammer of Justice, and Rebuke.

Priority of 9’s: Shield of the Righteous (only with 3 Holy Power), Judgement, [Exception*], Avenger’s Shield, Consecration, Holy Wrath

Shield of the Righteous takes the top spot because if you don’t use it when you’re sitting at 3 Holy Power then you’re going to waste Holy Power with the next Crusader/Hammer cast that you make unless you throw off your whole rotation. Judgement provides you with a lot of different beneficial effects, so use it when you can to reap the benefits.

The [Exception*] is when the target is below 20% health. In those situations Hammer of Wrath takes a priority slot right behind Judgement. If you don’t have 3 Holy Power yet and Judgement isn’t on cooldown, cast Hammer of Wrath before all the others.

Avenger’s Shield, Consecration, and Holy Wrath fill out the remainder of the priority list. I’m not a big fan of Consecration in this expansion, so I usually leave it out completely, but that’s just me.

The other spells I mentioned being able to fill your 9’s slots with are all situational. You won’t necessarily be able to fit in a Hammer of Justice or Rebuke cast on the 9 slot as interrupts are usually needed right now instead of whenever it’s convenient for you, and if you’re in desperate need of a Word of Glory heal then of course you need it when you need it.

Talent Spec: Protection 85

  • Improved Judgement 2/2: Increases the range of your Judgement by 20 yards.
  • Crusade 3/3: Increases the damage of your Crusader Strike, Hammer of the Righteous, and Templar’s Verdict by 30%, and the damage and healing of your Holy Shock by 30%. In addition, for 15 sec after you kill an enemy that yields experience or honor, your next Holy Light heals for an additional 300%.
  • Pursuit of Justice 2/2: You have a 100% chance to gain a charge of Holy Power when struck by a Stun, Fear or Immobilize effect. In addition, increases your movement and mounted movement speed by 15%. This effect does not stack with other movement speed increasing effects.
  • Rule of Law 3/3: Increases the critical effect chance of your Crusader Strike, Hammer of the Righteous and Word of Glory by 15%.

I like to take Improved Judgement as my first point outside of the Prot tree. It’s great for pulling additional mobs, patrols, or adds when you don’t have a taunt handy (or want to save it), and for having more to do while you’re rushing in on a boss. It’s not required, but I like it a lot personally. Switching these points to Eye for an Eye would be a decent alternative I imagine.

Crusade is a flat damage increase of 30% to two of our most frequently used spells: Crusader Strike and Hammer of the Righteous. I also like it for the 300% healing from Holy Light after you kill an honor/experience target so that I can easily top off after a big pull with a single, cheap heal.

Pursuit of Justice is a great little talent. First it gives free Holy Power when you’re stunned, feared, or immobilized and then it has the added benefit of increasing your movement speed by 15% on top of it. Increasing your speed from talents frees up an enchant slot on your boots too.

We finish off our talent points with Rule of Law, increasing the crit chance of three of our most common spells.

Again, I want to point out that my guides are here to help you level your toon, not necessarily to get your ready for raiding and farming heroics. If you want to get serious about end game content then you’re much better off looking at someone who’s focused on end game. I level, it’s what I do, and I can help you with that just fine, but end game is not my strong point.

Glyphs
All of your glyph slots will be open to you as of level 75, so you’ve now got 3 of each type to fill. Glyphs are listed in the order I would suggest you take them from a leveling perspective.

Prime

Now that all of our glyph slots are open, it’s time to fill them up with the good stuff. I list these in the order I suggest that you take them.

Major

Again, I list these in the order I suggest you take them. One glyph that might stand out as an oddity to you is the Glyph of Lay on Hands. I mention it solely because of the mana issues that many people are having right now, especially healers. Lay on Hands restores a lot of health, but it also restores some mana to the target as well, and being able to use this on a healer who’s out of mana can be the difference between a loot roll and a corpse run.

Minor

Paladin minor glyphs are crap. We get six glyphs that all do exactly the same thing, reducing mana cost of their respective spells by 50%. Grab the three you cast most often and go with it.

Gearing Up as Protection
As a melee class we’re looking for stats that impact our melee performance such as Strength, Attack Power, Hit, Crit and Haste. As a tank though, you also want to look for survival stats such as Stamina, Dodge and Parry.

Stat Priority: Strength and Stamina, Mastery, Dodge and Parry, Other melee stuff

Use that as a general guide for your stats. If you’re looking to get geared up for heroics and raids then I suggest you do a little more research elsewhere to find the actual stat weights.

 
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Posted by on February 16, 2011 in Class, Guide, Leveling, Melee, Paladin

 

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Professions Leveling: Mining 1-525

Well folks, it’s time for another gathering post in the series of Leveling Professions. This time we’re going to take a look at Mining, one of the most profitable gathering professions in the game, both directly and indirectly.

Mining is the primary gathering profession of Blacksmithing, Engineering, and Jewelcrafting, and it provides mats which are often used in Alchemy as well.

As I’ve said before, gathering professions are where I tend to venture away from the guides at WoW-Professions.com, because I have my own paths I like to travel to get specific items that I know sell for more or are used for more items that what the guide tells you. You can click on this link to find their Mining Leveling Guide, and this one if you’d like to level 1-375 with their Smelting Guide.

I’m going to go through the leveling guide and give you the information that you don’t find at WoW-Professions. I’ll go over how/where I personally go about leveling them (where I deviate from their guides), and some things I like or dislike about the profession. I’ll also give a few tips on how I make gold with the profession, or ways that I might put it to use that aren’t apparent to everyone.

Getting Started: Materials
As a gathering profession, Mining doesn’t need anything in the way of actual mats of course. However, it does require you to devote one item in your bags to an item that works as a Mining Pick. You can get the actual Mining Pick or any number of weapons that count as one. You can also use a Gnomish Army Knife which I have about a dozen of to pass around to my toons so they always have the basic tools for any profession. You can buy a pick from almost any trade goods vendor in the game as well as Blacksmithing Supplies and Mining Supplies vendors.

Special Note: One good thing about Mining is that even when nodes are green to you they still have a very high chance of awarding a skill point because of how few nodes there are. Herbalism has a lot of nodes, so the chance of getting skills on green nodes is fairly low, Skinning has even more “nodes” so skill points on green skins are rare, but Mining has the fewest nodes of all gathering professions so it has a high skill up chance on greens to make up for that fact.

There are a few items and enchants that give you a bonus to your Mining skill that can help you move forward to new types of ore a bit faster.
Enchant Gloves – Mining: Use: Teaches you how to permanently enchant gloves to increase mining skill by 2.
Enchant Gloves – Advanced Mining: Use: Teaches you how to permanently enchant gloves to increase mining skill by 5.
Goblin Mining Helmet: Equip: Mining +5.
Enchant Gloves – Gathering: Permanently enchant gloves to increase Herbalism, Mining, and Skinning by 5. Requires a level 60 or higher item.

I keep a pair of white-quality Cloth gloves that have the enchant for each of the gathering professions (the individual enchants for each, not Gatherer) on them to pass around to toons while leveling. I almost always level miners with a pair of enchanted gloves to help them gather, mostly for when you start getting towards the end of vanilla content and beyond where you’ll find “rich” nodes in the same zones as regular nodes.

I wouldn’t bother with the +2 Mining enchant unless that’s really all you can find, and even then I’d probably skip it. Advanced Mining and Gathering are both decent enchants to use, but like I said I don’t often use Gathering because I like to be able to use these kinds of items on low level toons and Gatherer requires high level items to use it.

The Goblin Mining Helmet isn’t bad, but it has some requirements that make it hard for a lot of toons to use it. First off it requires you to be able to equip Mail armor so half of the classes can never use it. Second, it requires an Engineering skill of 205 which means you have to have Engineering as your 2nd profession to use it, and you have to be at least level 20 you get your skill level high enough. But if you’re questing in a zone that has mining nodes more than 5 levels above your current skill level then you’re probably better off going back to a lower level zone to level up anyway.

Trouble Areas
Luckily, recent patches and expansions have done a world of good in smoothing out the bottlenecks of leveling the Mining profession. The number of nodes have been drastically increased, placement around the world has been improved so that you find ores you need in more zones and across more evenly spread level ranges, and minimum requirements to use the profession in each expansion’s content have been lowered.

If you’re just leveling Mining itself, then you don’t have to worry about bottlenecks very much at all now. The one slight exception is 375+ where you can no longer smelt your ore for additional skill points. However, spending about an hour in any of the top 3 zones in Northrend should yield enough Saronite nodes to push you easily to the minimum requirements for Cataclysm nodes (425).

If you’re leveling Mining to fuel a crafting profession though, then of course you’re going to need massive amounts of certain ores/bars to craft all of the items that you need. And that’s where the following information can help.

The following are Ores that are required in a significantly higher amount that other ores in relation to certain crafting professions. Also note that the numbers given are for the amount of Ore required to make the number of Bars required to level the respective crafting professions.

Mithril Ore: [BS 320, Eng 161, JC 140]
This is your first big stumbling block as a Blacksmith. Up to this point Iron has been your biggest time sink and you need less than 200 of that. You’ll need 320 Mithril Ore to level a Blacksmith and that’s a lot of ore. Engineers and Jewelcrafters need a fair amount of Mithril as well, but not nearly as much as Blacksmiths.

My favorite place to farm Mithril is Badlands. It doesn’t have the highest number of nodes in it (Thousand Needles does), but one big benefit it has over all of the other zones that do have higher node-counts is that it’s mostly flat ground (so easy to farm without a flying mount) and the nodes are very close together and spread out perfectly along the edge of the zone. Just while leveling there for a short time on my Shadow Priest recently I got over half of what you would need as a Blacksmith in this zone alone, and as much again in Burning Steppes.

Thorium Ore: [BS 420, Eng 189, JC 50]
Thorium is next up on the list, and if you’re a Blacksmith then this is the second worst grind you’re going to face for a single type of ore. Thorium is easier to come by than it used to be, but it can still be a pain, especially if you need a lot of it. With a 420 Ore requirement for Blacksmithing you can get an idea of why so many people hate leveling BS and consider it a massive time/gold/material sink – because that’s what it is. Engineers need a fair amount of Thorium as well, but again less than half of what a BS does. Jewelcrafting might only use 50 Thorium Bars in their leveling, but a lot of the gems that need to finish off vanilla patterns are found from Thorium Ore making that number of 50 somewhat incorrect. You only need 50 bars, but if you can’t get your hands on the gems themselves then you’ll need much more than that in raw ore for Prospecting.

My preference for farming Thorium Ore is Un’Goro Crater. Just like my Mithril spot above, it doesn’t have the highest number of ore nodes (Winterspring does), but it does have a more farmer-friendly layout. The zone is relatively flat, though there are some times you’ll need to go up into the mountains around the edge of the zone to find your nodes. The best trait of the zone is that it’s almost perfectly round and most of the nodes are found around the outside ring, making farming there very simple and easy to do.

Cobalt Ore: [BS 320, Eng 324, JC -]
Cobalt Ore is the next bottleneck, the first ore of Nothrend. Blacksmiths need 320 Ore, but they’re outmatched this time by the Engineers who need 324. Jewelcrafters don’t need this ore in particular because we’ve now stepped away from Jewelry as the primary product of JC and now we’re looking more at Gems and what Jewelry we do have is mostly made with Eternals instead of smelted bars. That said though, you don’t really need all that much ore to level through Northrend content as a JC.

I hate farming Cobalt Ore; Of all the ores that WoW has to offer, Cobalt sucks the most. Well, not counting the uncommon nodes, of course. There are five primary zones that you can farm Cobalt, and while all of them offer a decent number of node locations, none of them are really set up for easy farming. The highest concentration of nodes is in Zul’drak, but I really don’t like the layout of the zone and the placement of the ore nodes there, so I usually avoid the place. Instead I prefer to farm in Howling Fjord because it has the simplest farming paths and many of the nodes can be farmed at-level without much risk of pulling nearby mobs because it has a large concentration of non-aggressive beasts and many nodes don’t have any mobs around them at all.

Elementium Ore: [BS 708, Eng 224, JC -]
Last up on our bottleneck list is Elementium, the highest common ore of the Cataclysm expansion. Blacksmiths will prepare for their worse ore farming spree yet with 708 Ore (354 Bars) needed to level their profession. Engineers don’t even come close with their 224 Ore (112 Bars) needed, and Jewelcrafters don’t necessarily need any of it at all.

While Deepholm supposedly has the highest number of Elementium nodes available, it’s also one of the most frequently farmed locations for it. Twilight Highlands is listed as having the second highest Elementium population, and Uldum the third. I’ve farmed in all three of these locations, and while Deepholm used to have Elementium everywhere you looked it’s now almost barren. Twilight Highlands is sort of the premium farming spot for almost everything so finding ore there sucks as well. So Uldum is my choice for farming Elementium even though the layout of the zone sucks compared to Deepholm’s circular setup.

For this bottleneck I’m going to have to say that you’re better off finding your own favorite spot on your server. Since this is new content these nodes will be targeted more than all of the others above, and each server has its own economy that will determine where you should farm or if you should even bother farming at all. It could be that your server is so full of farmers that your only real option is to farm the Auction House instead.

Psynister Preferences
I don’t really follow the WoW-Professions guide much at all when I’m farming ore. I have followed their smelting guide, but generally I don’t power level Mining for the sake of having Mining, I do it to fuel a crafting profession. Because of that I don’t want to just reach the next level for the newest types of ore, I need to find good places to farm for certain types of ore and gather until I have enough for what I’m going to make.

As I mentioned before though, I also enjoy PvP twinking and like to keep a store of mats for power leveling my twinks’ professions, so I always farm more than I need so that I can keep my twink guild bank stored with whatever mats I need.

If you’re farming ore so that you can sell the ore/bars raw on the Auction House, it’s always good to know where the market stands on each type of ore, and what else you might be able to do with that ore by using any crafting professions you have access to that use it.

Before you sell your ore, always check the value of the bars you can make with it first. You might think that you’re making a kill selling a stack of ore for 90g, but you might be ripping yourself off if you could have smelted that ore and sold the stack of bars for 140g. It’s more common in bars that require 2 of their respective ores to craft instead of only 1, but I’ve turned even stacks of Copper Ore into Bars and sold them for 4x the profit before.

While it can be a hassle if you’re not used to it, it’s also a good idea to get to know your crafting professions well so that you know what you can craft with which type of mats. If you have a Blacksmith then you might want to consider not selling your Mithril/Thorium (the same for Fel Iron/Adamantite, Cobalt/Saronite, and Obsidium/Elementium) until you check the prices for Plate Tanking gear that you can make with that ore to see if it’s more valuable. When you’re dealing in Northrend and Cataclysm mats you may also want to check the prices on Plate DPS gear, especially those pieces that have Resilience and are good for PvP as they often sell well (server depending, of course).

If you have a Jewelcrafter then you might want to keep yourself familiar with the value of gems that you can prospect as well. You’ll rarely get more money prospecting Outlands ore than you would for selling the ore itself, and for the most part the same is true for Northrend. But for some vanilla gems and even some Cataclysm gems, sometimes you can get more money from prospecting than you can from the ore.

Your other option is to craft things with a BS/Eng/JC and then disenchant them with an Enchanter to then sell the enchanting mats or enchanting scrolls on the Auction House. You can search for details on this type of thing at various websites by searching for “Saronite Shuffle” or “Obsidium Shuffle” which can give you the basics. Some of it applies to just those particular ores, but you can apply the concept even to vanilla and Outlands ores as well.

Power Leveling List

From WoW-Professions.com:

1 – 60 Durotar, Dun Morogh
60 – 110 Barrens, Loch Modan
110 – 185 Ashenvale, Wetlands
185 – 205 Dustwallow Marsh, Hinterlands
205 – 265 Thousand Needles
265 – 300 Un’Goro Crater
300-360 Hellfire Peninsula, Nagrand
360-450 Borean Tundra, Sholazar Basin
450-525 Mount Hyjal

Guide Sections:
1 – 65 – Copper Ore
65 – 125 – Tin Ore
125 – 175 – Iron Ore
175 – 230 – Mithril Ore
230 – 300 – Thorium Ore
300 – 325 – Fel Iron Ore
325 – 350 – Adamantite Ore
350 – 400 – Cobalt Ore
400 – 425 – Saronite Ore
425 – 475 – Obsidium Ore
475 – 525 – Elementium Ore

 
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Posted by on February 11, 2011 in Guide, Leveling, Professions

 

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Priest Leveling: 50-69 Shadow

If you’re just getting started on a Shadow Priest of your own, or considering one, then I suggest you take a look at the previous guides applicable to your level:
Priest Leveling: 1-29 Shadow
Priest Leveling: 30-49 Shadow

Playing a Shadow Priest
There aren’t really all that many changes in how you’ll play your Shadow Priest in this level compared to the last 20 levels. While you get a lot of helpful spells and talent points, none of them really impact how you actually play your class. The biggest change is that you get even more ways to restore your mana so that you can more liberally spread your DoT’s around to multiple targets without having to worry about your mana.

Shadow-Specific Tips
If you’ve been following along with my other guides then you’ll know that mana has been an issue for us for some time. Hopefully you’ve been seeing the same thing I have, in that mana issues for the most part disappear in the 30’s or 40’s. Well in this bracket we get even more tools to help us with mana regeneration, allowing you to become a bit more aggressive in combat.

Continuing on with the Jedi analogy, this is where you get to stop hiding in the shadows like some wrinke-faced Sith Lord and go whip out a dual lightsaber of doom like Darth Maul. Now sure, Maul ended up falling to pieces in that horrible Episode 1, but you can’t deny that he was the coolest thing we’d seen up to that point.

What does that have to do with anything? Well I’ll tell you what it ha- WHAT’S THAT OVER THERE!??!??!?

I’m sorry, you were saying? Yeah, I forgot too. So anyway, yes the Shadow Priest is an awesome class to play and now that we’ve got the mana issues under control it’s time to start really start embracing the Shadow and start dishing out the damage.

Important Spells & Abilities
We do get a few new spells in this level range, but only a couple of them really stand out for us as Shadow Priests.

  • Mysticism: Increases your Intellect by 5%.
  • Shadow Protection: Power infuses the target’s party and raid members, increasing their Shadow resistance for 1 hour. If the target is in your party or raid, all party and raid members will be affected.
  • Fear Ward: Wards the friendly target against Fear. The next Fear effect used against the target will fail, using up the ward. Lasts 3 min.
  • Mind Soothe: Soothes the target, reducing the range at which it will attack you by 10 yards. Only affects Humanoid and Dragonkin targets. Does not cause threat. Lasts 15 sec.
  • Mana Burn: Destroy 10% of the target’s mana (up to a maximum of 20% of your own maximum mana). For each mana destroyed in this way, the target takes 0.5 Shadow damage.
  • Holy Nova: Causes an explosion of holy light around the caster, causing 155 to 179 Holy damage to all enemy targets within X yards and healing up to 5 targets within X yards for 155 to 179. Healing is divided among the number of targets healed. These effects cause no threat.
  • Hymn of Hope: Restores 2% mana to 3 nearby low mana friendly party or raid targets every 2 sec for 8 sec, and increases their total maximum mana by 15% for 8 sec. Maximum of 12 mana restores. The Priest must channel to maintain the spell.
  • Shadowfiend: Creates a shadowy fiend to attack the target. Caster receives 3% mana when the Shadowfiend attacks. Damage taken by area of effect attacks is reduced. Lasts 15 sec.

At level 50 every class gets a 5% buff to their primary stat for their chosen spec (Intellect for us). That bonus only applies so long as you are wearing the type of armor associated with your class, but since we can only wear Cloth we just get it by default. For us, that buff is called Mysticism. It’s not a spell, but it’s listed as such, so there you have it.

You get two buffs in this level range to add to your buff collection. The first is Shadow Protection at 52 which gives you and your party/raid resistance to Shadow. It’s not great, but what the heck, we’ll take it. The second is Fear Ward which auto-cancels the next fear effect that targets you (or the target of your Fear Ward). Shadow Protection is an hour long buff so you want to have it up at all times just in case, but Fear Ward only last for 3 minutes and it’s only good for 1 use, so you’ll really only use it when you’re facing targets that you know are going to fear you.

Mind Soothe is an interesting spell. It reduces the physical range that a mob will agro you at. The only time you’ll really find this useful is when you’re using gathering professions or when you’re trying to “sneak” around in a certain area where your flying mount isn’t available. It’s uses are fairly slim, but it can be helpful if you’re doing gathering professions or gathering quests and would rather not fight every mob in the area. I’ve personally never used this, but it can help if needed.

Mana Burn is an interesting spell. It destroys mana rather than health (directly, at least) and then converts the amount of mana destroyed into half as much Shadow damage dealt to the target. It’s a decent spell to cast for running caster mobs out of mana so that they run into melee range when you’re in a dungeon, or for burning through a healer’s mana so they can’t heal anymore. I generally prefer to just kill the target, but it does have its uses.

At level 62 we finally get our first AoE, Holy Nova. Unfortunately it’s a Holy spell so casting it takes us out of Shadowform. The damage on it kind of sucks and the healing isn’t bad but it’s not great either. I’ve gone ahead and used it a few times in LFG after getting SW:Pain and Vampiric Touch on all the mobs, then I’ll spam Holy Nova while jumping around in the group of mobs hoping for Shadowy Apparitions to proc (see talents below). It worked alright, but it wasn’t great and mobs died faster when I just stayed in Shadow and burned them down. It’s still kind of fun, though.

Level 64 brings us one of our new mana restoration tools in the form of Hymn of Hope. It restores a total of 20% mana to up to 3 party/raid members and increases their total maximum mana by 15% for 8 sec. It’s a channeled spell, just like your Mind Flay, so if you do cast it be sure you let it do its job. The tooltip on it is a little confusing, so don’t take it at face value. By increasing the targets’ total many it increases how much mana it’s actually restoring itself as well. The best way to use this spell is to watch your healer’s mana in LFG. If you see him going down a bit, use this to give him a hand. If you’re flying solo you can use it to restore your own as well of course, but you shouldn’t be struggling with mana very often anymore.

Level 66 introduces our summonable pet, the Shadowfiend. Every time the Shadowfiend deals damage to a target he restores 3% of your maximum mana. If you’re really hurting for mana and there’s nothing you can get it from with SW:Death casts, a good way to get some of that back is to summon your Shadowfiend and then channel Hymn of Hope while it attacks. Hymn of Hope increases your maximum mana by 20% while it’s being channeled so each of the Shadowfiend’s attacks are going to restore 3% of your temporarily increases mana pool, meaning it will restore quite a bit more mana every time it hits. If you had 10,000 mana, then each hit would restore about 300 mana. Using Hymn first increases your mana to 12,000 which would make each attack restore 360 mana instead. That might not seem like a whole lot with a 10k mana pool, but when you reach level 85 and you’ve got twelve times that much mana you’ll really start to see the benefit.

Leveling a Shadow Priest

  • Questing Single Mob: Vampiric Touch, Mind Blast, Shadow Word:Pain, Mind Flay, Shadow Word:Death
  • This is my rotation right now for killing single targets. If the target isn’t down to 25% health by the time Mind Flay is finished being channeled, I’ll just leave them alone and go after another target, allowing SW:Pain finish them off. If they’re not elites, they’re not going to live through that.

    When you’re in Outlands you can usually leave the Mind Blast or the SW:Pain cast out of the rotation, whichever you prefer. As I move on into Northrend I’ve started to leave out the Mind Fly cast and just let the DoT’s do their thing to finish the mobs off. Until you get points spent in Shadowy Apparition, I would probably leave out the SW:Pain cast to save your mana.

  • Questing Multi-Mob: Vampiric Touch, Mind Blast, Shadow Word: Pain (first target) – Vampiric Touch, SW:Pain, Devouring Plague (second target) – Vampiric Touch, SW:Pain (all others) – SW:Death to finish targets
  • I changed this up just a little bit from the last guide. The main reason for that is because I like to get the mana regeneration from Replenishment rolling early, which requires you to Mind Blast a target currently afflicted with Vampiric Touch. I also like to make sure my Shadowy Apparitions have as many chances to proc as possible, so I get SW:Pain cast on all of the targets.

    I then switch to a second target and use all three of my DoT’s on it, adding Devouring Plague to get some heals rolling in as well. All of the other targets just get the two spammable DoT’s since Devouring Plague can only be on one target at a time. If I’m low on mana or looking to speed up the kill times then I’ll add the Shadowfiend in for some extra damage and mana regen.

    If you use a bubble before the first pull to reduce the damage you take and then start taking more damage than you can stand while PW:Shield is on cooldown, just cast Disperse and reduce your damage received by 90%. When it wears off you can use a heal if you need to, and hopefully PW:Shield is about ready to be reapplied, or Psychic Scream is off cooldown.

  • LFG Trash Rotation: Vampiric Touch (1 target), Mind Blast (same target), Shadow Word: Pain (all targets) , Mind Flay (as needed), SW:Death when possible
  • I changed this one up a bit as well, and for the same reason. I like getting that Replenishment effect rolling as soon as possible, so I do it first, then spam SW:Pain on everything.

    While I’m casting my DoT’s I generally run a crescent shape pattern back and forth behind my tank while I tab-target all of the mobs to get SW:Pain spread around. The reason for this is to increase my chance to spawn Shadowy Apparitions from 12% up to 60% per damage tick. Your apparitions can do some nice burst damage, so giving them a better chance to spawn can be pretty useful. Just don’t forget to have a Fade and/or Disperse ready to cast in case you get several Apparitions to proc and burst your way passed the tank on the threat meters.

    In Outlands I topped damage meters by doing 30-100% more DPS than everyone else in basically every instance I ran, including other players who had full, enchanted heirlooms. As I moved on to Northrend that gap quickly closed and now I often fight Mages and Warlocks for the top DPS spot. Don’t read that as me bragging, read it as an example of about where we sit as a class on DPS at this level. If you keep your DoT’s up and spread them around early then you’re going to see good results.

  • LFG Boss Rotations: Vampiric Touch, Mind Blast, Shadow Word: Pain, Devouring Plague, SW:Death, Shadowfiend (on cooldown), Mind Flay, Mind Blast, Mind Flay x2
  • Again, we’re going to get Replishment rolling first off, then we’re going to establish DoT’s. Reapply your DoT’s as needed, but remember your Mind Flay will refresh SW:Pain once you’ve spent your talent points to get the effect. Vampiric Touch (VT) will wear off before Devouring Plague (DP) will, and you’ll have enough time to cast 2-3 spells after refreshing VT before you need to refresh DP.

    Keep your DoT’s up at all times. If you need mana, get it. Shadowfiend, SW:Death, Replenishment (Vampiric Touch + Mind Blast), Dispersion, and Hymn of Hope are all sitting there just waiting to be used, so don’t let yourself run dry for no reason. If you’re especially low on mana then cast your Shadowfiend first and follow it with an immediate Hymn of Hope. Both of them restore your mana by themselves, but Hymn has the added bonus of increasing the size of your mana pool and the amount of mana returned by the Shadowfiend is based on your maximum mana, so all of its attacks will restore more thanks to Hymn.

    Talent Spec: 69 Shadow Priest

    • Mind Melt (+1) 2/2: Increases the damage done with your Shadow Word: Death by 30% on targets at or below 25% health, and when you deal damage with Mind Spike, the cast time of your next Mind Blast is reduced by 50% lasting 6 sec. Mind Melt can stack up to 2 times.
    • Pain and Suffering 2/2: Your Mind Flay has a 60% chance to refresh the duration of your Shadow Word: Pain on the target, and reduces the damage you take from your own Shadow Word: Death by 40%.
    • Paralysis 1/2: When you critically hit with your Mind Blast, you cause the target to be unable to move for 2 sec.
    • Shadowy Apparition 3/3: When you deal periodic damage with your Shadow Word: Pain, you have a 12% chance to summon a shadow version of yourself which will slowly move towards a target which is afflicted by your Shadow Word: Pain. Once reaching the target, it will instantly deal 485 shadow damage. While moving, the chance to summon the shadowy apparation is increased to 60%. You can have up to 4 Shadowy Apparitions active at a time.
    • Sin and Punishment 2/2: When your Vampiric Touch is dispelled, the dispeller and all nearby enemy targets within 10 yards have a 100% chance to be instantly feared in horror for 3 sec. When your Mind Flay critically hits, the cooldown of your Shadowfiend is reduced by 10 sec.
    • Dispersion 1/1: You disperse into pure Shadow energy, reducing all damage taken by 90%. You are unable to attack or cast spells, but you regenerate 6% mana every 1 sec for 6 sec. Dispersion can be cast while stunned, feared or silenced and clears all snare and movement impairing effects when cast, and makes you immune to them while dispersed.

    I finished off Mind Melt first because I like that extra damage on SW:Death. You find that mobs have more health when you move from Vanilla into Burning Crusade and again from Burning Crusade into Wrath, both of which you’ll do in this level bracket. By increasing the damage that you do you have a better chance of triggering that 12% mana return from your Glyph of Spirit Tap instead of only 10% mana from the Masochism talent.

    Pain and Suffering was next on my list because I like to solo all of the Outlands group quests as I come to them. Those group quests are against mobs that have way more health than anything you’ve faced before, and being able to save mana on those big fights by not having to refresh my SW:Pain spell were a big help, especially when I had to drop Shadowform to heal myself. This talent won’t help you much if you’re big on just solo questing, but it’s great on bosses in LFG as well.

    Paralysis is kind of a filler talent right now to get us down to the next level. Rooting a mob when you crit with Mind Flay is pretty cool when soloing, and really useful for PvP, but in places like LFG is most a waste. Whether or not you take this one is up to you. I have some suggestions down below for other places to spend this point.

    Shadowy Apparition is a really cool talent. When you have SW:Pain cast you have a chance to summon little shadowy versions of yourself that walk towards your target and burst into shadowy damage when they touch them. The chance to summon one is pretty low at only 12%, but that’s only when you’re standing still. If you’re moving while your SW:Pain ticks away on the target that chance is increased to 60% each time it deals damage to them. If you’re fighting mobs 1v1, then chances are good that you’re standing still, casting your spells. But if you really want to start nuking things, get your DoT’s on the target and then start moving around while your Shadow App’s blow them up.

    Sin and Punishment is a talent that you’re going to need to decide for yourself whether or not you want to take it. It has good value in PvP, but in PvE half of its effect will basically never happen. The benefit of taking it outside of PvP is that when you crit with Mind Flay you have a chance to reduce the cooldown of your Shadowfiend spell by 10 seconds, which is great if you’re still struggling with mana. I’m currently playing around with this one to decide if I like it or not for PvE, but so far it’s not too bad when doing LFG on boss fights.

    Dispersion is one of the signature Shadow Priest spells. It turns you into a shadowy cloud and reduces the damage you take by 90% for 6 seconds. During that time can’t attack or cast spells, but you do regenerate 6% of your mana every second for those 6 seconds (so 36% total mana regen). A great thing about this spell is that it can also be cast when you’re in almost any kind of CC available (I think polymorph is the only effect it won’t break). The most important thing for soloing is the mana regeneration, but the damage reduction is a great bonus as is being able to break so many forms of CC.

    If you don’t like the feel of Sin and Punishment, as part of it’s effect is very much PvP related, feel free to switch those two points around. My suggestion would be to put another point into Paralysis to root the target for 4 seconds instead of 2, and the the remaining point I would put into Psychic Horror to have a targeted fear with the added bonus of a disarm. If you don’t like either of those options, then I suggest you put the two points into Harnessed Shadows instead. The two points in Pain and Suffering can be moved as well if you don’t like the talent for leveling.

    Remember that the talents that I suggest in my leveling guides are chosen based on their usefulness in leveling your character. Some of these talents you won’t take if you’re already at end game and preparing for heroics or raids. I’ll leave that up to the people who focus on end game content.

    Glyphs
    Level 50 finally opens up our second glyph slot of each type, so we can finally start to get some more power from our glyphs without having to decide whether we’re primarily LFG levelers or solo levelers.

    Prime Glyhphs

    • Glyph of Mind Flay: Increases the damage done by your Mind Flay spell by 10% when your target is afflicted with Shadow Word: Pain.
    • Glyph of Shadow Word: Pain: Increases the periodic damage of your Shadow Word: Pain by 10%.
    • Glyph of Shadow Word: Death: If your Shadow Word: Death fails to kill the target at or below 25% health, your Shadow Word: Death’s cooldown is instantly reset. This effect cannot occur more often than once every 6 sec.
    • Glyph of Dispersion: Reduces the cooldown on Dispersion by 45 sec.

    I list the Prime Glyphs in the order that I suggest them. Mind Flay and Shadow Word: Pain are the two that I’ve been using and the two that I think I’m going to keep on using as well. Shadow Word: Death is another good option as it not only gives you a better chance of getting your Spirit Tap glyph to proc, it also gives you a way to deal some quick burst damage to mobs or bosses that are low on health. Dispersion is a decent glyph if you’re looking for more survival or more mana regen. It drops the cooldown from 2 minutes to 1 minute and 15 seconds so you can use it a lot more often, but I’m not sure that you really need to cast it that often.

    Major Glyphs

    • Glyph of Spirit Tap: When you kill a target with your Shadow Word: Death and yield experience or honor, you instantly receive 12% of your total mana over 12 sec.
    • Glyph of Fade: Reduces the cooldown of your Fade spell by 9 sec.
    • Glyph of Psychic Scream: Targets of your Psychic Scream spell now tremble in place instead of fleeing in fear, but the cooldown of Psychic Scream is increased by 3 sec.
    • Glyph of Psychic Horror: Reduces the cooldown of your Psychic Horror by 60 30 sec.

    Spirit Tap remains the top priority here, though with more mana tools coming out in this bracket you could probably drop it if you really wanted to without worrying too much. Fade is a really good option for me since I like to hit LFG now and then to help me level and it’s also good for PvP against pet classes as Fade will often make a pet leave you and target something else if you’ve not done anything to harm the pet. Psychic Scream is a good option if you’re going to do a lot of LFG leveling by making the mobs tremble in place instead of running off in random directions. Last up is Psychic Horror which cuts its cooldown in half by 30 seconds, though you’ll have to spent the talent point to get the spell in the first place before this glyph does you any good.

    Minor Glyphs

    Minor glyphs are still really minor so take whatever you want. Levitate is my first option just because I like using spells like Levitate and don’t like having to keep a supply of some stupid reagent in my bags in order to use it. Fortitude is great if you’re into LFG and just decent otherwise. Fading isn’t a bad option, though it’s not especially good either. Shadowfiend has some real good potential, but I don’t think my Shadowfiend has died from damage even once so it wouldn’t do me much good right now.

    Gearing Up Your Priest
    At this level range you should have enough of your mana returning spells and effects that Spirit isn’t quite so important now as far as mana is concerned. Spirit is still a good stat to have, especially with points in Twisted Faith turning it into Hit Rating, but at this point I wouldn’t bother stacking it above other stats that are more important to your DPS.

    Stat Priority: Intellect > Haste > Crit > Spirit

    So I’ve changed up the priority list just a little bit, dropping Spirit down a couple of notches because it’s not as important anymore. Intellect is always the top priority for DPS casters as it provides mana, spellpower, and spell crit. I have Haste ranked next because it can increase your DPS in multiple ways, but it’s especially good for classes that make use of DoT’s. I bumbed Crit up in the list mostly because of the drop in Spirit’s importance, but also because watching all of your DoT’s crit and taking a target from 85% down to 14% is a wonderful sight to see, and makes excellent SW:Death fodder for refilling your mana pool.

     
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    Posted by on February 8, 2011 in Caster, Class, Guide, Leveling, Priest

     

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    Professions Macro Revisited

    Back in July of 2009 I wrote a post about advertising your professions in trade chat via macro. That post still gets over 200 views every day and people still email about getting errors when they use it even though I mentioned the fix for those errors in the comments. So today I’m going to go over that macro again, this time pointing out the steps you need to take to avoid the errors.

    The Macro Itself
    The part that is Red is where you put the name of whatever profession you want to show up, in the example we use Enchanting, but it can be whatever profession you have (Engineering, Leatherworking, Tailoring, etc). And yes, it does have to be in double-quotes.

    The part that is Green is where you type in whatever message you want to appear along with the link. In this example I note that I have “Mongoose, Crusader, Surefooted and more” because those are enchants frequently asked for in trade chat on my server. So I try to draw a little extra attention to the link by noting those enchants. And that message also needs to be in the double-quotes.

    /script CastSpellByName(“Enchanting“);SendChatMessage(“Psynister’s “..GetTradeSkillListLink()..” all Cataclysm recipes available.”,”CHANNEL”,nil,GetChannelName(“Trade – City”));CloseTradeSkill();

    When you use this particular macro, the result will be this:

    “/2 Trade: Psynister’s [Enchanting] all Cataclysm recipes available.”

    Making the Macro Work
    This is the part that everyone keeps emailing me about, saying that it gives them errors and does work. When you copy that text from my blog to your game, it will not work. I can’t tell you exactly what causes it, but I do know what the problem is and how to fix it. When you paste it into the game the double-quotes and dash characters register as the wrong characters in-game so it gives an error instead of running in.

    In order to make the macro run you’ll need to go through and delete all of the double-quotes and the dash between “Trade – City” by deleting it and then just typing it right back in. You’ll be able to see the difference the copied double-quotes and your own double-quotes when you replace them, but I can’t explain exactly why it happens.

    Here is another copy of the macro, exactly the same, but with all of the punctuation you need to replace highlighted in red.

    /script CastSpellByName(Enchanting);SendChatMessage(Psynisters ..GetTradeSkillListLink().. all Cataclysm recipes available.,CHANNEL,nil,GetChannelName(Trade - City));CloseTradeSkill();

    I don’t think you actually need to replace the single quote in “Psynister’s” in the example above, but since there’s a chance that you do I went ahead and highlighted it as well. Now obviously, you’re not going to use my name in front of your own macro, so replace that part with your own message or go ahead and remove it, and the same applies to the ” all Cataclysm recipes available.” part, either change it or delete it as needed.

     
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    Posted by on February 3, 2011 in Guide, Macro, Professions

     

    Professions Leveling: Jewelcrafting 1-525

    Continuing on with the series on Leveling Professions. This time we’re going to look at one of the hottest professions the game has to offer – Jewelcrafting.

    Jewelcrafting (or JC) is a somewhat odd profession because it completely changes what it does once you get halfway through with leveling it. Up to skill level 300 the profession crafts rings and necklaces, an occasional trinkets. Once you hit level 300 it switches your focus almost entirely over to gems with a few bits of jewelry left over. That trend continues on throughout the remaining expansions, though jewelry does crop up a bit more in Wrath and Cataclysm.

    The purpose of these guides isn’t to actually tell you what to make, because you can already find that at the same source I go to when it’s time to level professions: WoW-Professions.com. You can click on this link to find their Jewelcrafting Leveling Guide.

    Instead, I’m going to go through the leveling guide and give you the information that you don’t find at WoW-Professions. Things such as bottlenecks in crafting or materials, how I personally go about leveling them (where I deviate from their guides), and some things I like or dislike about the profession. I’ll also give a few tips on how I make gold with the profession, or ways that I might put it to use that aren’t apparent to everyone.

    Getting Started: Materials
    The first thing you need to know about Jewelcrafting is what type of materials you need to craft. Mining is your primary source. If you want to level a Jewelcrafter then you need to either make their other profession Mining so that they can provide their own mats, have another toon with Mining to feed them mats, or be prepared to spend thousands of gold on the auction house purchasing the ore or raw gems that you need.

    There are two items that you’ll need to have with you in order to perform your Jewelcrafting services. First up is the Jeweler’s Kit which you need for basically everything you do with the profession, and second is the Simple Grinder which you’ll need once you reach skill level 300 and start cutting the gems.

    Once you reach the Northrend level of Jewelcrafting you’ll also find that Alchemy can be a great benefit for leveling up your Jewelcrafting by being able to transmute certain gems for you. You don’t have to have an Alchemist, but it can be very useful. If you’re looking to do JC for the sake of profit and not simply providing gear and gems for your character then you may really want to consider leveling an Alchemist for the ability to transmute lower quality gems into higher quality.

    If you’re looking to power-level the profession you can scroll down to the bottom of this post to find a list of items you want to gather beforehand. Be aware though that there are some portions of power leveling it where there are more than one option for what items to craft and there may be a cheaper option available to you. I suggest you follow the guide as needed rather than stocking up on all the mats before hand so that you don’t end up spending thousands of gold on a certain material when you could have spent just a couple hundred on another option.

    Jeweler’s Special
    There are a couple of things that are special to the Jewelcrafting profession as well, which most other professions do not have. These are Prospecting and Daily Quests.

    Prospecting is a Jewelcrafter-only spell that you can train at skill level 20. It allows you to turn 5 of a single kind of Ore (Copper, Fel Iron, Cobalt, etc) into gems instead. The 5 Ore are destroyed in the process and replaced by the gems. Each type of ore has it’s own set of gems that it can turn into, and knowing which ore turns into which gems is the key to making gold as well as the key to leveling up “on the cheap” if you would rather farm your own ore than buy certain gems on the auction house or even worse, farm them from ore node procs alone.

    Refer to the following table to find out which kinds of gems you can get from each type of ore.

    Ore Type Primary Prospect Secondary Prospect Additional Prospects
    Copper Ore Malachite 50% Tigerseye 50% Shadowgem 10%
    Tin Ore 1-2 Lesser Moonstone 38%
    1-2 Shadowgem 38%
    1-2 Moss Agate 37% Aquamarine 3%
    Citrine 3%
    Jade 3%
    Silver Ore Cannot be prospected.
    Iron Ore 1-2 Citrine 36% 1-2 Jade 35%
    1-2 Lesser Moonstone 35%
    Aquamarine 5%
    Star Ruby 5%
    Cannot be prospected.
    Mithril Ore 1-2 Star Ruby 36% Aquamarine 35%
    1-2 Citrine 35%
    Large Opal 3%
    Azerothian Diamond 2%
    Blue Sapphire 2%
    Huge Emerald 2%
    Truesilver Ore Cannot be prospected.
    Dark Iron Ore Cannot be prospected.
    Thorium Ore 1-2 Azerothian Diamond 31%
    1-2 Blue Sapphire 31%
    1-2 Huge Emerald 31%
    1-2 Large Opal 31%
    1-2 Star Ruby N/A
    Fel Iron Ore 1-2 Uncommon Gems 17-19% Rare Gems 1.1-1.3% N/A
    Eternium Ore Cannot be prospected.
    Adamantite Ore Adamantite Powder 100% 1-2 Uncommon Gems 17-19% Rare Gems 4%
    Khorium Ore Cannot be prospected.
    Cobalt Ore 1-2 Uncommon Gems 23-24% Rare Gems 1.1-1.5% N/A
    Saronite Ore 1-2 Uncommon Gems 18-19% 1-2 Rare Gems 4-5% N/A
    Titanium Ore 1-2 Uncommon Gems 23-24% 1-2 Epic Gems 4-5% 1-2 Rare Gems 4%
    Obsidium Ore 1-2 Uncommon Gems 23-24% Rare Gems 1.2-1.3% NA
    Elementium Ore 1-2 Uncommon Gems 18% 1-2 Rare Gems 4-5% NA
    Pyrite Ore 1-3 Volatile Earth 100% Uncommon Gems 16-17% Rare Gems 7-8%

    There are a couple of other types of Ore that you can get from mining in particular zones that are used strictly for quests that I didn’t bother linking above. If there’s another type of ore you’ve found that isn’t on this list you can safely assume that it has no prospecting value.

    Trouble Areas
    Almost every profession has some sort of bottleneck, or trouble area where the mats are either hard to find or all of the recipes you have access to are either green or yellow and so only have a chance to skill you up. I’ve had yellow recipes that took up to nine attempts before it gave me a single point, and yet I’ve had green recipes that gave me a point every single time I made them. Random numbers suck, but that’s all we’ve got.

    One of the early bottlenecks you might find is pretty early on. If you can’t find 20 Small Lustrous Pearls or 40 Shadowgems (or if they’re overpriced) then you might want to take a look at the price of Silver Ore or Silver Bars instead since they can level you through the same range. I find I rarely use Silver in other professions so I end up having a couple of stacks worth sitting in my bank. You’ll see that yourself while you’re leveling through WoW-Profession’s guide, but it’s one you should be aware of for sure since the price of Shadowgems in particular can range anywhere from a few silver to several gold each.

    Now, on to some more literal bottlenecks. Large Opal is the first one that comes to mind. While you may find a few while leveling up a Miner, they aren’t all that common overall. The best way to get them is by actually prospecting Thorium Ore, which people don’t really do all that often in general. You might be able to find them on your AH if people have been prospecting ore or leveling toons with Mining, but you might find them way more expensive than you’d like to pay. If you aren’t going to spend time mining Thorium for extended periods of time then you may want to check the prices for Thorium Ore on the AH to see if it’s cheaper. You can get some of them from prospecting Mithril Ore as well, but the chance is much lower.

    You can also find Azerothian Diamonds with the same method which can ease up the cost of mats for leveling Jewelcrafting. Some of the other recipes in this level range also require other gems that can be found from prospecting Thorium. Those in particular are a bit easier to find because they also have a higher chance of being mined from the actual Thorium nodes, but it’s good to know where they come from.

    If you find that prices for the gems in this particular level range, which is 225-300 or so, then be sure to check the price of Thorium Ore to see if you might be better of buying it than the gems themselves, or give some thought into farming Thorium Ore yourself if you have a Miner who can do so easily.

    The next potential bottleneck is Outlands level gems. Typically you can find these for pretty cheap prices on the Auction House, usually less than 1g each or even just 4-5g for a stack of them. You need about 55 of them or so, and it doesn’t matter which type they are. However, you’re going to need to prospect 200 Adamantite Ore to get your hands on the 40 Adamantite Powder you need to finish leveling through Outlands content anyway, so before you purchase those gems you might want to prospect all of your Adamantite Ore and use the gems you get from it first. You do have to have a Jewelcrafting skill of 325 before you can prospect Adamantite Ore, so you may need to buy some raw gems to get you up to that point. The blue-quality rare gems from Outlands sell for 3g each to a vendor, and that’s about all they’re good for too.

    The only other bottleneck I wanted to bring up here is going to come at the very end of your JC leveling, which is the new uncommon gem, Nightstone. You need 40 of them to powerlevel, but they’re also one of the gems required for the JC daily quests so they’re often more expensive than the other gems. You can either purchase the gems themselves, or you can buy/farm the Cataclysm ores to prospect for a chance to get them. I had 24 stacks of Obsidium Ore last night and prospecting them all yielded exactly 20 of these. While prospecting is completely random in what it gives you, you can see the percentage chance of getting one is fairly low at a bit less than 1 per stack of ore in this particular example.

    Notable Special Recipes
    There are only a couple of recipes that you need to keep an eye out for when you’re leveling your Jewelcrafting. There are other options for things you can craft to get past their levels, but you’ll really spend a lot of mats using them instead.

    Both of these “special” recipes are for fairly low level crafting, and you really only need to get one or the other unless you can’t find enough of their mats to get through the level range, then it’s beneficial for you to go ahead and get both. The first one is Design: Pendant of the Agate Shield which can be purchased from Neal Allen (Alliance) in Wetlands or Jandia (Horde) in Thousand Needles.

    The second recipe is the Design: Amulet of the Moon which is purchased from Arred (Alliance) in Exodar or Mythrin’dir (Alliance) in Darnassus, or from Daniel Bartlett (Horde) in Undercity or Gelanthis (Horde) in Silvermoon City.

    While there are a lot of recipes (usually called “cuts” or “designs”) for other types of gem cuts, the way that gemming works basically nullifies all of the old cuts when new expansions are released. The only exception is twinks, but I haven’t even bothered looking into the twink gem market to be able to tell you how profitable that may or may not be.

    Specializations
    Jewelcrafting is one of the few crafting professions that does not, and has not (that I’m aware of), had any form of specializations attached to it. Basically, all JC’s are created equal.

    However, the high level gem cuts are purchased by tokens that are rewarded for completing daily quests that are only available to high level JC’s. Because of that the patterns for specific gems take time to acquire and not all JC’s will have the same patterns at the same time. Generally you’ll find that casters will start with caster cuts, melee the melee cuts, tanks the survival cuts, and so on. The exception to that, at least early on in an expansion like we are now, is when members of a guild team up in their pattern purchases so that nobody is overlapping and each JC can get a different pattern so that all of the guild’s needs can be met by at least someone, and after those needs are met then they will start to get the patterns they prefer for their own characters or that sell the best on the AH depending on what their motivations are.

    So if you’re looking for Strength gems you generally have a better shot finding the cuts you need from Jewelcrafters who are similar classes that also need those same cuts. So Strength-based Plate Tank/DPS will usually have Strength gems, Leather/Mail DPS classes will usually have Agility, DPS/Healing casters will tend towards Intellect, and so on. Like I said, it doesn’t always work that way, but in general that’s what you’ll find early on in an expansion.

    Psynister Preferences
    Jewelcrafting is one of those professions that I pretty well stick to the guides on. I do break away a few times, particularly when it comes to snatching some cheap skill ups at the beginning of each material bracket up to skill level 300.

    The item I’m talking about are the Stone Statues which each require 8 of the different types of Stone found in Azeroth mining nodes, from Rough up through Dense. The stones summon a little statue that sends out a channeled heal that targets you for a few seconds and then dies. The Rough, Coarse, and Heavy versions each take 8 of their respective stones to make and the Solid and Dense versions each take 10 of their stones. They aren’t all that useful, but they do come in handy when they’re needed and they’re fairly cheap to make as well.

    If you have a stockpile of these from leveling Mining on one of your toons then you might consider dumping them into these statues for some cheap skill levels since the stone usually sells for crap on the AH. If you don’t have your own, go ahead and check their price on the AH, and if they’re cheap go ahead and get a few stacks if you can skill up on them, but if they’re expensive then just ignore it since they’re not really needed. Making the statues does take a lot of stone, and the statues themselves only stack up to 5 so you’ll fill up your bags pretty quick, but it’s another option that can potentially save you more expensive mats.

    There are also two suggestions I’m going to make in particular regarding making gold with this profession. First off, buy every green-quality Northrend gem you find on the AH for 50 silver or less. You can cut all of the Northrend uncommon gems and vendor them for 50 silver if they’re regular cuts or 1g if they proc as a perfect cut. If they’re over 50s each then I don’t suggest you buy them, but if they’re at 50s you’ll at least break even and under 50s you’ve got guaranteed profit. The same concept applies to Cataclysm gems, except that the vendor value for them is 9g each. So if you see any at under 9g then snatch them up, cut them, and then vendor them.

    Another item you can make early on that can bring in some decent gold is the Thick Bronze Necklace. It requires level 17 to wear, provides +3 Stamina, and has a fairly low material cost of 2 Bronze Bars, 1 Shadowgem, and 1 Delicate Copper Wire. This necklace is the default choice for all level 19 twinks. Every now and then the market gets flooded with these and they aren’t worth the mats it takes to make them, but if you get your hands on some cheap mats or already have some collecting dust in your bank then it’s a good option for turning it into cash.

    Power Leveling Materials List
    The following list is taken from the WoW-Professions website. To find a list of what to make with these items you’ll need to refer to their Jewelcrafting Leveling Guide.

    Approximate Materials Required for 1-525:

    IMPORTANT! DO NOT BUY ALL OF THE MATERIALS AT ONCE! Jewelcrafting is really expensive to level, and on most servers AH is screwed up because of the insanely high prices of low level Gems, Orbs and Bars. I usually have a few tips and alternatives so you can save some gold.

    100 Copper Bar
    20 Tigerseye or 20 Malachite
    120 Bronze Bar = 60 Copper Bar, 60 Tin Bar
    60 Shadowgem OR 20 Shadowgem and 20 Small Lustrous Pearl
    80 Heavy Stone
    30 Moss Agate / 60 Lesser Moonstone for Horde
    140 Mithril Bar
    80 Solid Stone
    25 Citrine
    15 Truesilver Bar
    5 Aquamarine
    50 Thorium Bar
    10 Star Ruby
    20 Large Opal
    10 Powerful Mojo or 10 Blue Sapphire
    10 Essence of Earth or 10 Essence of Undeath
    20 Huge Emerald
    55 green gems OR 40 and 15 Black Diamond – You can find a list of green gems here. Don’t buy all of them from one kind, because there might be some recipes where you don’t have the reputation to buy it, so you will have to choose other green gems. Just buy them when you get to that part of the Jewelcrafting guide.
    40 Adamantite Powder (200 Adamantite Ore)
    10 Primal Earth
    10 Adamantite Bar
    Buy around 70 from any of the following gems: Bloodstone, Chalcedony, Dark Jade, Huge Citrine, Shadow Crystal, Sun Crystal. Make sure to buy at least 5 Bloodstone, 1 Chalcedony, 1 Shadow Crystal and 1 Dark Jade, because you will need the Bloodstones when you reach 395 and the other gems when you reach 440.
    46 Eternal Earth OR 23 Eternal Earth and 23 Eternal Shadow
    5 Forest Emerald
    5 Titanium Bar
    5 Dream Shard
    Buy 45 from any of the following gems: Carnelian, Alicite, Jasper, Zephyrite. I did not include Hessinote and Nightstone in the list, because you will use them later on.
    16 Hessinote
    40 Nightstone
    Note: 495-525 material list is not included, because you shouldn’t buy all of them at once, but you will need around 30 Shadowspirit Diamonds and a lot more Uncommon Gems for the Fire Prism transmutes.

     
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    Posted by on February 2, 2011 in Guide, Leveling, Professions

     

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    Paladin Leveling: 50-69 Protection

    Now it’s time for our next-to-last guide on leveling your Protection Paladins. This time we’re going to finish up Vanilla, blow through the Burning Crusade content, and get started the Wrath of the Lich King content as well.

    Up to this point you have all of the primary tools required for tanking, though you’re still missing some of your defensive cooldowns. At the end of this guide you’ll also have those cooldowns that you’re missing and you’ll finally reach the final talent point in your tree, allowing you to finally be able to branch out into the Holy and Retribution trees.

    Playing a Protection Paladin
    There’s not much change at all in how you play your Paladin in this level range compared to how you played it in the last. You now have both of your Holy Power generating attacks as well as both of the spells you’ll primarily dump your HP into to use. You’ve got all the tools you need to be an AoE grinding fiend, and you’re virtually immortal so long as you don’t over-pull.

    While you’re getting ready to go to Outlands at level 58 I suggest you go ahead and start testing those boundaries to see just how far you can go. Pull five or six mobs and see how you do. Any problems? If so, then you know that your limit is below that. If not, then go pull a couple more and see if you can still survive it. Keep on doing this until you find out where your boundaries are so that you don’t find yourself in situations that you can’t handle. Know your strengths, and utilize them.

    As you move into Outlands itself you’re going to end up in a gear reset though, so be prepared to get hit harder once you get there and likely you’ll find you can’t pull nearly as many mobs as you could in Vanilla. Well, not until you get your gear upgraded at least. Once you’ve got the gear upgrades you can start finding those boundaries again.

    Prot Paladins truly are a power trip. You have some of the best defenses the game has to offer coupled with some incredible healing and survivability skills, and great damage thrown in as well. You’re not going to kill things as fast as a DPS character will, but you’ll kill more things in shorter time than they could. You also excel in areas filled with Undead or Demon mobs, which is what much of Outlands is all about.

    Protection-Specific Tips
    The first thing you need to know about this level range is that level 50 opens up your Plate Specialization. Since you’ve chosen the Protection spec, this means that you get a 5% bonus to your Stamina for wearing Plate armor in all of your armor slots, so make sure you’re not still carrying around any Mail pieces that might have been left over; upgrade them as soon as possible. You can probably drop under 50g on the auction house to replace any Mail pieces that you’re still holding onto.

    The next thing you need to know is that at level 62 you get access to Crusader Aura which increases your mounted speed by 20%. You’re probably going to have this ability turned on all the time when you’re out running around the world, especially if you have a gathering profession. But remember, you can only have one aura active at a time and having this active while running dungeons is a complete waste. So don’t be a nubcake by leaving your Crusader Aura on or else you’ll make me a sad panda, and I don’t want to be a sad panda. :(

    Important Spells & Abilities
    There are a lot of spells and abilities that come with being a Paladin, but I’m going to try to keep it simple and limited to only the most important ones for a Protection spec. There are other spells that you’ll get in this level range as well, I leave them out only because I do not find them critical to playing a Prot Paladin.

    Level 50-69:

    • Hand of Freedom: Places a Hand on the friendly target, granting immunity to movement impairing effects for 6 sec. Players may only have one Hand on them per Paladin at any one time.
    • Blessing of Might: Places a Blessing on the friendly target, increasing attack power by 10% and restoring 326 mana every 5 seconds for 1 hour. If target is in your party or raid, all party and raid members will be affected. Players may only have one Blessing on them per Paladin at any one time.
    • Crusader Aura: Increases the mounted speed by 20% for all party and raid members within 40 yards. Players may only have one Aura on them per Paladin at any one time. This does not stack with other movement speed increasing effects.
    • Hand of Salvation: Places a Hand on the party or raid member, reducing their total threat by 2% every 1 sec for 10 sec. Players may only have one Hand on them per Paladin at any one time.

    Hand of Freedom is by no means a critical spell, unless you’re a big fan of PvP. However, there are going to be some mobs that start to use some slowing effects on you in this level range were before it was very rare. If you find yourself slowed or rooted in place, then this is the spell that you use to free yourself (or another friendly target). I use this a lot when I’m body pulling several mobs for an AoE grind, especially when there are casters using Frost spells on me.

    Blessing of Might is our second blessing. Generally speaking I like to use Might when I’m soloing, and Kings when I’m in a group (unless there’s a Druid in the group, then I’ll Might). It’s an Attack Power buff and it also restores mana, making it a very useful buff, especially when you don’t have any DPS there to provide you with extra firepower.

    Crusader Aura, like I mentioned above, is a fantastic buff that gives you an extra 20% mounted movement speed, which makes Paladin an excellent gathering class, and that movement is very useful when you’re leveling by cutting down your travel time between questing hubs and locations. Just don’t forget to turn it off when you’re in dungeons since it does nothing for you there.

    Hand of Salvation is a spell that you need to get familiar with as soon as you get it. It reduces threat over time of the target you cast it on, lowering their threat by 2% every second up to a maximum of 20%. If you see someone getting close to you on threat then you want to cast this on them early to be sure they don’t steal it from you. If you’re in a dungeon and you find someone who’s consistently pulling threat, just get used to casting this on them before it becomes an issue each time. Different classes build threat at different speeds so it’s hard for me to tell you when to cast it, so just pay attention and adjust as needed. If they’re stealing it early then cast it right when they start to become an issue, if it takes them a few moments to get it then cast it at the end of your rotation or something to knock them down before it becomes an issue.

    Leveling a Protection Paladin
    Buffs List: Righteous Fury, Seal of Insight/Truth, Blessing of Might/Kings, Retribution/Devotion Aura
    Multi-Target Rotation: Avenger’s Shield, Hammer of the Righteous, Holy Wrath, Hammer of the Righteous, Judgement, Hammer of the Righteous
    Single-Target Rotation: Exorcism, Avenger’s Shield, Crusader Strike, Judgement, Crusader Strike, Holy Wrath, Crusader Strike, Shield of the Righteous
    Boss Rotation: Avenger’s Shield, Judgement, Divine Plea, Shield of the Righteous, Crusader Strike, Holy Wrath, Crusader Strike, Judgement, Crusader Strike, Shield of the Righteous

    Not much change here except that I’ve added in the Boss Rotation and the Buffs List.

    The Buffs List contains the buffs you should have up at all times. You’ll notice that most of those have a This/That option as well. I tend to use Seal of Insight at all times while I’m leveling. Most mobs aren’t going to live long enough to make SoTruth worth it, and it’s better to keep your life and mana topped off instead. For Blessings I generally use Might when soloing and Kings when I’m in a group or a Battle Ground. The Aura is up to you, though I lean towards Retribution unless I’m taking a ton of damage.

    The reason why the boss rotation changes from everything else were doing is because you want to start off as strong as possible on the threat front. Avenger’s Shield and Judgement give you a decent start on threat but the real kicker is using Divine Plea which your talents trigger to give you 3 Holy Power and Shield of the Righteousness burns those three for a big burst of threat as well. Doing this should put you far enough ahead of all your DPS that you won’t have to worry about them pulling off of you. Also, if you have your Avenger’s Shield cooldown reset from your talent procs go ahead and fit it in whenever you have a moment to do so.

    Talent Spec: Protection 69

    • Vindication 1/1: Your Crusader Strike and Hammer of the Righteous reduce physical damage done by their primary targets by 10% for 30 sec. In addition, your Hammer of Justice will interrupt creatures that are immune to stuns.
    • Guarded by the Light 2/2: Increases your Word of Glory by 10% when used to heal yourself, and allows your Word of Glory to grant Holy Shield. In addition, any overhealing will create a protective shield equal to the amount of overhealing that lasts for 6 sec.
    • Reckoning (+1) 2/2: You have a 20% chance after blocking an attack for your next 4 weapon swings within 8 sec to generate an additional attack.
    • Shield of the Templar 3/3: Reduces the cooldown of Avenging Wrath by 60 sec and Guardian of Ancient Kings by 120 sec. In addition, your Divine Plea will generate 3 Holy Power.
    • Sacred Duty 2/2: Your Judgements have a 50% chance of making your next Shield of the Righteous a critical strike. Lasts 15 sec.
    • Ardent Defender 1/1: Reduce damage taken by 20% for 10 sec. While Ardent Defender is active, the next attack that would otherwise kill you will instead cause you to be healed for 15% of your maximum health.

    Vindication reduces the damage we take from the primary target of our CS and HotR attacks by 10%. It also turns Hammer of Justice into a spell interrupt for us to use against targets that are immune to stuns, which are typically elites and dungeon bosses, but also some mob types who are generally immune to stun as well. The main thing though is the damage reduction.

    Guarded by the Light is another great defensive tool, increasing the healing we receive from Word of Glory and also allowing WoG to proc Holy Shield for us, so that we can get the defensive buff from HS even when we’re in AoE grinding mode and spending our HP on heals rather than single target DPS from Shield of the Righteous. It also has the added benefit of providing us with a bubble whenever we overheal ourselves with Word of Glory, allowing us to dump HP for addition defense in cases where WoG heals you to full but your other talents make that WoG cast cost no HP, you can cast it again to get a bubble if you need one.

    Reckoning we already had one point in, and now we’ve just finished it off. It’s purely a Threat/DPS increase, giving us a chance to get free melee attacks after we block an enemy attack. The best way to (ab)use this talent is by fighting multiple melee mobs at once, so always strive to do so when it’s convenient.

    Shield of the Templar reduces some cooldowns that we don’t even have yet which is kind of wasted for right now, but it also provides us with 3 Holy Power instantly when we cast Divine Plea. You can either turn that into an “oh crap-heal!” opportunity to get a full powered WoG cast (or as a bubble from the talent above), or you can use it offensively by popping Divine Plea before you rush in to attack a boss and start the encounter off with a full powered Shield of the Righteous (see the Boss Rotation in the section above).

    Sacred Duty is another potential Threat/DPS increase. Every time you cast Judgement on the target you have a 50% chance to ensure your next Shield of the Righteous is a critical strike. The buff lasts for 15 seconds, so if you’re about to cast SHoR and your Judgement is off cooldown, but you don’t have a Sacred Duty proc, start with the Judgement cast first for a chance to score a free crit with your most damaging spell.

    Ardent Defender is purely a defensive cooldown. You want to use it when you think you’re about to die. It provides a 20% damage reduction so it’s good to cast at any time, but it’s best used when you really are going to die because it will stop you from dying and instead heal you back up to 15% of your maximum health. If I’m going down I try to pop this when I know I’m a few seconds away from dying and I’ll follow up the Ardent Defender heal when I “die” with either a Lay on Hands for a full heal, or a Divine Plea-fueled Word of Glory heal to try to get myself back on my feat as best I can.

    Glyphs
    Now that we have access to two of each glyph slot I’m going to include a third option for you to choose from in each category. Glyphs are listed in the order I would suggest you take them.

    Prime

    Now that you have two slots to fill you need to decide which two are going to be the best for you. I suggest Hammer of the Righteous no matter what. Of the other two I suggest Shield of the Righteous if you’re going to do a lot of dungeon running, and Crusader Strike if you’re more focused on solo questing.

    Major

    Dazing Shield is the one I suggest you get first as it has the most potential for being useful. Holy Wrath is a close second since you’re going to start running into more Dragonkin and especially Elementals as you continue on. As I’ve said before, Consecration is quickly becoming a thing of the past, so I’m not too fond of it. As my 85 Prot Paladin is currently AoE grinding the crap out of mobs left and right I’m actually using it more and more, but that’s really the only situation where it’s a big deal. Pick up Dazing Shield and then go with whichever of the other two appeals to you more, or pick another one that I didn’t mention if you don’t like the sound of either.

    Minor

    Pick two and go with it. Since seals only have a 30 minute duration where Blessings are 60 minutes, I suggest you take that as one of them just because you’ll cast it more often, but otherwise it really doesn’t matter.

    Protection Macros
    Only one new glyph this time, and it’s up to you whether or not you use it.

    #showtooltip
    /castsequence reset=10 Judgement, Divine Plea, Shield of the Righteous

    This macro is one I use when I’m charging in on a boss. Rather than pressing all the buttons I need to cast the spells individually, I just spam this one while I’m running in to face the boss until SHoR goes off. I’ve played around a bit with adding Avenger’s Shield either before or after Judgement, but I prefer to just have it off on it’s own to add it in when I want it or leave it out otherwise.

    The idea here is to use Judgement hoping for a Sacred Duty proc to force SHoR to be a crit, then using Divine Plea to get 3 Holy Power for free, and following that up with the actual SHoR cast. It’s the single best way to establish threat on a boss early on. The only thing you can do to improve it is to throw Avenger’s Shield into the mix as I said, though I’d probably start off with it and then spam this one. Whether or not you need that much threat starting off is something you’ll have to decide on your own.

    I only use this on bosses though, as it’s not really needed during trash pulls or when soloing.

    Gearing Up as Protection
    As a melee class we’re looking for stats that impact our melee performance such as Strength, Attack Power, Hit, Crit and Haste. As a tank though, you also want to look for survival stats such as Stamina, Dodge and Parry.

    Stat Priority: Strength and Stamina, Dodge and Parry, Other melee stuff

    In short, we’re going to stack Strength and Stamina first and foremost, followed by our avoidance stats of Dodge and Parry, and then on to any other DPS stats (attack power, hit, crit, haste, etc). Most of the stats that you want to cap at end game are still rare for us to find even in Outlands (though not as bad as Vanilla was), so this is really all you need to watch out for for the time being.

     
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    Posted by on February 1, 2011 in Class, Guide, Leveling, Melee, Paladin

     

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    Professions Leveling: Skinning 1-525

    Today I’m going to continue my series on Leveling Professions with a gathering guide – Skinning.

    Skinning is the primary gathering profession of Leatherworking, and it provides mats which are often used in Blacksmithing, Engineering, and even Tailoring as well.

    Gathering professions is where I tend to venture away from the guides at WoW-Professions.com, because I have my own paths I like to travel to get specific items that I know sell for more or are used for more items that what the guide tells you. You can click on this link to find their Skinning Leveling Guide.

    I’m going to go through the leveling guide and give you the information that you don’t find at WoW-Professions. I’ll go over how/where I personally go about leveling them (where I deviate from their guides), and some things I like or dislike about the profession. I’ll also give a few tips on how I make gold with the profession, or ways that I might put it to use that aren’t apparent to everyone.

    Getting Started: Materials
    As a gathering profession, Skinning doesn’t need anything in the way of actual mats. However, it does require you to devote one item in your bags to be used as a Skinning Knife. You can get the actual Skinning Knife item from basically every trade goods vendor in the game as well as any leatherworking supplies vendors and some blacksmithing supplies vendors as well. There are also some items that act as a Skinning Knife, chief among them being the Gnomish Army Knife which acts as the basic gathering and crafting tools for basically every profession.

    Special Note: One way that Skinning stands apart from every other profession is that even mobs that show as Orange do not have a 100% chance to skill you up when you’re skinning. Another way it differs is that you’re not guaranteed to get any leather or any other items when you skin something either. Sometimes you’ll skin orange mobs and get nothing at all for it. It’s more rare that you’ll get no items than it is that you won’t get a skill point, but both of them happen.

    You can also get several bonuses to your Skinning skill from items and enchants in the game.
    Enchant Gloves – Skinning: Permanently enchant gloves to increase skinning skill by 5.
    Enchant Gloves – Gathering: Permanently enchant gloves to increase Herbalism, Mining, and Skinning by 5. Requires a level 60 or higher item.
    Finkle’s Skinner: Equip: Skinning +10. (Also counts as a skinning knife.)
    Zulian Slicer: Equip: Skinning +10. (Also counts as a skinning knife.)

    I keep a pair of white-quality Cloth gloves that have the enchant for each of the gathering professions (the individual enchants for each, not Gatherer) on them to pass around to toons while leveling. Skinning typically doesn’t need it, but if you’re going to power level it then being able to move on to the next stage a bit early can save you some time.

    The Zulian Slicer is no longer in the game, so if you don’t already have one you’re just out of luck. Finkle’s Skinner can still be found in Upper Blackrock Spire, and you can use two of them for +20 Skinning if your class is able to dual wield. Both of these items count as a skinning knife as well, so you can get rid of your regular one if you have these, or your gnomish army knife if you don’t need it for your other professions.

    If you are looking for a guide to farming specific leathers, WoW-Professions has a guide for that as well: WoW Leather Farming Guide.

    From WoW_Professions:

    Up to skinning 100, you can find out the highest level mob you can skin by: ((Skinning skill)/10)+10. Example: ( 50 / 10 ) +10 = 15

    From skinning level 100 and up the formula is simply: (Skinning skill)/5. Example: (175 / 5 = 35)

    Trouble Areas
    Skinning doesn’t really have any trouble areas, it’s basically about as straight forward as you can get since it’s keyed off of mob levels. If you find yourself in a zone that doesn’t reward you skill points for skinning then you simply move on to another zone that does.

    However, if you’re Skinning for the sake of doing Leatherworking then there are definitely some bottlenecks.

    The problem is that it’s so easy to level Skinning. If you skin everything while you level you’ll still find that you’re short on certain leathers if you’re using them for LW because you spent so little time in areas that give you the kind of leather you need in the quantities that you need it.

    So while Skinning itself doesn’t have any bottlenecks, I am going to tell you which leathers you want to spend a little extra time farming. If you’re interested in leveling Leatherworking or in selling the leather for profit, then you’ll want to take a look at this list. If you’re just interested in getting to max level as fast as you can so that you can focus on Cataclysm leathers, then just disregard the list and move on to the next section.

    Heavy Leather: While you only need 180 of these to level your Leatherworking, the level range that these drop in are generally gone through so quickly that you won’t have near that amount even if you skin while you’re leveling your character. If you are leveling your profession with your toon then the best place to farm this on your own is in Feralas. However, I prefer to farm it via dungeon, particularly Uldaman.

    In Uldaman you’ll find three (four?) little pits filled with scorpids that all have a great drop rate for Heavy Leather. You’ll also find several bats and basilisks in the instance that can also be skinned for Heavy Leather. You will end up scoring some Medium Leather and Medium/Heavy Hides from them as well, but the Medium Leather can be combined by a Leatherworker to turn it into Heavy, and the Heavy Hides are often hard to come by and sell pretty well on the AH, so they’re an added bonus.

    Thick Leather: You need 410 Thick Leather for Leatherworking, and while you’ll find plenty of it while you’re leveling a toon, you probably won’t find the 20.5 stacks worth before you’re ready for Outlands. If you’re going to farm them solo while leveling then your best bet is to head over to Badlands and kill the dragon whelps northwest of New Kargath. You can also go kill the Ravasaurs in Un’goro Crater.

    Because you need so much of this one and so much of the Rugged Leather as well, I like to farm these in a place that gives me a nice mixture of both of them: Sunken Temple. If you’re a high enough level to solo this place then I highly recommend it. There are a ton of dragonkin in here and almost every mob in the instance is skinnable (save the one wing filled with trolls). You’ll find Thick and Rugged Leathers in almost exact proportions each run. You will end up with some Green and White Dragon Scales as well which aren’t used for much, but sell reasonably well on the AH.

    The two skinners that I recently leveled to 525 both went here, and I farmed it a third time to help my wife with her Skinner/Leatherworker a couple of weeks ago as well. The instance is a fraction of the size it used to be now and it’s full of skinnable mobs in a fairly small area. Reaching my five dungeons per hour limit I got an average of 185 of each of these leathers per hour.

    Another decent place is Blackrock Depths. You can kill all of the hyena/dog things there for Thick Leather. There are a fair number in the first room and then there’s a boss right down the hall that’s surrounded by them. You can get a decent amount here, but not as much as Sunken Temple. The side benefit of running BRD for the leather is that you can also get a bit more profit if you also take the time to go upstairs to take down the Pyromancer for a chance at the Enchant Weapon – Fiery Weapon recipe which you can sell for 50-150g.

    Because it takes 410 of these to power level Leatherworking, Thick Leather is a decent option to grind for profit. Thick Leather prices are always all over the place any time I look at getting into them. They’re either incredibly high or ridiculously low. Watch the market and find a decent time to jump in. And in case you didn’t know, right now is a good time. Currently Leatherworking is one of the top raiding professions in the game and people are powering through it.

    Rugged Leather: You also need 410 Rugged Leather for Leathworking, and it’s a bit harder to come by than the thick in general leveling. The reason for that is because you’re generally going to leave for Outlands at level 58 and it’s pretty likely that you’ll manage to get a least a level or two into the 50’s while questing or running dungeons in areas where the mobs are still dropping Thick Leather. If you want to solo farm these at level then you want to head to the Blasted Lands, farming the boars and hyenas that inhabit the northern half of the zone.

    As I said above though, I prefer farming these in Sunken Temple alongside the Thick Leather. The level range of the mobs in Sunken Temple is great for being able to double-dip into two different level ranges of leather at the same time. You need the same number of both types for LW, and you’ll find them at almost the exact same rate in the instance, so you might as well skin two birds with one sunken stone.

    If you have all the Thick you need/want already, then you can also head into Blackrock Spire to farm these. There are a lot of mobs there that can be skinned for Rugged Leather, but I don’t care for the layout of the dungeon and you have to run through a lot of humanoids to get to the areas where the farming is really good so it’s kind of a pain.

    Again, with 410 of these required to power through Leatherworking, Rugged Leather is a great option for farming if you want to make some gold on the AH. Rugged Leather is typically the top seller for Vanilla leathers, because so much is needed and so many people are eager to get into Outlands as soon as possible which means they miss out on farming opportunities.

    Borean Leather: This is your biggest road block in the whole leveling process. If you’re leveling it along with your toon then it won’t be such a mindnumbing grind (yes it will), but it’s still going to suck. You need almost 1,000 Borean Leather to power through Leatherworking, so you’ll be here for a very long while if you want to farm it all yourself and for that purpose. Arctic Furs can drastically reduce the number of Borean Leather someone needs to level, but with the number of people in Northrend dwindling, it won’t be long before the supply disappears.

    When you first get to Northrend you’ll start with the Rhinos in Borean Tundra (my preference) or the Shoveltusks in Howling Fjord. Once your skill reaches 390 you’re off to Sholozar Basin for some monkeys. (I resisted the urge to put a joke in there, so you should thank me.) The Gorillas there are your farming spot of choice for the rest of forever as far as Northrend is concerned. If you get tired of farming the monkeys, or your competition picks up, then you can kill the mammoths, worms and proto-drakes in Storm Peaks, the mammoths, raptors and cats in Zuldrak, or the Nerubians in southeastern Ice Crown.

    If you feel like running dungeons your best bet for the leather is going to be Violet Hold. Almost everything in there is a dragonkin that can be skinned. The only exception being most of the bosses.

    Psynister Preferences
    I break away from the guide on Skinning quite a bit because I have my own way that I just prefer to use. I don’t really use the guide much at all until it’s time for Outlands, honestly.

    Following the WoW-Professions you’ll be skinning mobs that are generally always either orange or yellow to you, so you have a higher chance of skilling up per skinning attempt. I prefer to level mine with quantity over quality, so I often farm large packs of mobs using AoE that are only green to me because I can get more skill points in a shorter period of time without having to do excessive amounts of travel to get to new zones just to get orange/yellow mobs when I could just as easily the same skill level by spending another 10-15 minutes right where I am.

    1-100
    To start off, I start leveling all of my skinning at the farms south of Goldshire. I don’t care whether they’re Horde or Alliance, I’m going to the Human’s capital zone to start my skinning because it is hands down the best place to do it. The pigs at these farms have a forced respawn, meaning that when you kill them you force others to spawn. The fastest way to farm them is to find a Mage that’s high enough level to one-shot them with Ice Lance and just have them run circles around the farm killing everything that moves. Set the loot to Free For All and you loot/skin while they kill.

    Don’t worry about the bodies despawning before you get to them because there’s literally an endless supply here and you’re just going to skin your little heart out until you hit 75. Personally, I hit 50-60 and then go to the trainer north of Goldshire to train the next level and then I go back and farm them again until I reach 90 skill. After I hit 90 I run around the zone on the eastern or western edges to kill the packs of wolves and bears until I hit 95-100.

    100-150
    From there I generally skin the wolves in northern Duskwood since they’re right there just south of me, but the real sweet spot is the Wailing Caverns instance. That place is filled with raptors and snakes that can be skinned from skill level 95+ and so is the cave outside of the instance. There’s also the added bonus that every Druid of the Fang in the place has a chance to drop Gloves of the Fang which sell on the AH for 45-175g. My current record is four pair of the gloves on a single run.

    There are also two rare spawns in the cave outside of the instance portal, one who drops a two-handed axe that sells for 50-125g and the other which drops a mail belt that I’ve sold for 175g. They won’t be there all the time of course, but it doesn’t hurt to take a look when you’re in the area.

    The Barrens itself is a great place to level your skinning as both North and South Barrens are just filled with beasts. What you don’t manage to get skilled up in Wailing Caverns can be done by farming the plateau just north of Ratchet which is filled with raptors, zhevra and and lions (and two rare spawns), or in the packs of lions and hyenas that are spread all over the zone.

    150-225
    Once you reach skill 150 it’s time to go down into Southern Barrens where the level 30+ mobs are. Here you can skin the raptors and hyenas that are spread along the northern border as you make your way to the mountains west/northwest of Northwatch Hold (on the eastern shore). There you’ll find a pack of raptors set back into the mountain. There’s an Alliance quest that sends you in there to get supply crates or something now, and I don’t recall what the quest was before the Shattering. Skin all of these until you reach skill level 165 or so and then it’s time to hit another instance.

    Razorfen Kraul has two wonderful spots for skinning. The first is the trench that’s typically considered the end of the dungeon, though you can easily reach it from the entrance, and the other is the cave near the middle/end of the dungeon filled with bats. The first time I run it I usually run the dungeon as it’s meant to be run, and just skip all of the humanoids that aren’t in my way. I kill and skin all of the bats and the big piggy boss that’s in the cave as well, and then I drop down where the final boss is and clear out the trench full of boars. Then I leave and reset the dungeon and go run it again clearing out just the boars and skipping the rest of the instance until everything has gone green to me or I’ve reached the next level of skinning and have to train.

    Again, I go for quantity over quality, so I’ll often give RFK at least one more run after I train, just hitting the boars real quick and then heading out to Dustwallow.

    225-260
    At 225 it’s time to head over to Dustwallow Marsh just east of the Southern Barrens. There are beasts all over this zone, but three areas in particular interest me. The first is in the mountains west of Muddsprocket; there’s a small area filled with annoying trees where you’ll find a pack of raptors. That’s the first place I clean out because of how many there are in the small area, they’re very easy to AoE.

    The second spot is north of Muddsprocket, near the center of the map, called the Stonemaul Ruins. This area is covered with dragonkin that can all be skinned. The ruins themselves hold a lot of dragonkin, and so does the area around it. You’ll also find a lot of crocs in the swampy area all around the zone which are also great for skinning. There’s also a cave between the raptor area I just mentioned and the ruins that is filled with these same type of dragonkin, so I’ll move from the raptors to the ruins killing everything in between.

    The third area is east of Muddsprocket, surrounding Onyxia’s Lair. This place is also swarming with dragonkin just waiting to be skinned. There are some drakes that fly above you too, so if you have a ranged attack you can pull those down from the sky and kill/skin them as well.

    Each of these three areas is great for skinning, but most of what you’ll find is going to be Heavy Leather with a little Thick Leather mixed in. While that’s great for your skinning skill, it doesn’t do a whole lot for the massive quantities of Thick/Rugged that you’ll need if you’re a Leatherworker, and that’s where the next part comes in.

    260-300
    Once you reach 260-270 though it’s time to move on to yet another instance: Sunken Temple.

    Here you’re going to kill dragonkin by the dozen. While you can skin two of the three bosses in the instance, they don’t drop any special type or special amounts of leather so I suggest you just skip them if you’re only here for the leather. Kill all of the dragonkin, leave the instance, kill the three dragonkin right outside the portal, reset the instance, go back inside and repeat those steps until you reach 300 skill.

    If you get close to 300 and you aren’t getting skill points as often as you’d like, go ahead and move on to Un’goro Crater and kill the ravasaurs there to finish it off. Some of the mobs in Sunken Temple will go grey before you get to 300, so you might just leave for Un’goro a little early if you don’t need any more Thick Leather and finish your skill levels with better mobs.

    300-525
    I didn’t find any better options for 300-525 that what WoW-Professions suggests, so I stick to their guide pretty much from that point on.

    Power Leveling List

    1 – 60 Durotar, Dun Morogh
    60 – 110 Barrens, Loch Modan
    110 – 185 Ashenvale, Wetlands
    185 – 205 Dustwallow Marsh, Hinterlands
    205 – 265 Thousand Needles
    265 – 300 Un’Goro Crater
    300-360 Hellfire Peninsula, Nagrand
    360-450 Borean Tundra, Sholazar Basin
    450-525 Mount Hyjal

     
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    Posted by on February 1, 2011 in Guide, Leveling, Professions

     

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