It’s time to return to World of Warcraft today beginning at 3:00 pm Pacific / 6:00 pm Eastern (you can check your start time here) with the simultaneous worldwide launch of the Battle for Azeroth. Players and their respective factions will be beating the drums of war, but the wily player will take care of a few things before heading out to battle. Here’s what we recommend.
Clean Out Your Bank, Crafting Panel & Inventory
Even though it’s late summer, it’s time for spring cleaning. Take a look at your bags and your bank slots. It’s probable that they’re packed to the gills with legendaries, crafting resources, and miscellaneous notions picked up during the last two years of Legion. We all save like packrats “just in case” amirite? Well no more! The battle for Azeroth will bring new crafting reagents, new toys to collect, new gear to keep for those occasions when you’re using an off spec and so on and so forth. So get out that Magic Broom and get busy, soldier. There’s no time to waste. Give your inventory and bank a good scrubbing to free up all of those soon-to-be-filled slots!
And in case you’re still hesitating, particularly with crafting materials, literally everything in Legion costs in the silvers on the Auction House. No need to save them anymore. You’ll be able to purchase them if or when you decide to craft “legacy” items once BFA is getting long in the tooth.
Oh...and trash the Legendaries too. All of them that had so many possibilities for gameplay will have all effects disabled at level 116 and are for the most part simply stat sticks. If you have any items that grant movement speed (Sephuz, the crafted legendary boots, Aggramar’s Stride, etc.) they are worth using in the early days. The rest? Unless you’re sentimentally attached to them, give ‘em the heave-ho.
Abandon All Incomplete Quests from Legion
While you’re in cleaning mode, dump those old unfinished quests from Legion (and before) except for those that may progress an Order Hall campaign or lead to an achievement / mount, etc. There’s simply no reason to keep them in your log since it has a limited capacity for the number of active quests you’re allowed. As with every new expansion, there will be a ton of new quests and your log will fill up very, very fast. So save yourself the hassle of trying to figure out which ones you can safely abandon on the fly and do it now before the expansion launches later today.
Log In on Alts to Start Accruing Rested XP
With ten new levels, you’ll definitely want to log ALL of your characters before you go adventuring on your main. You’ll want to make sure they’re in a place that accrues Rested XP so that when you’re ready to trot them out for their turn at adventure, they’re ready to go with the "rested" bonus to experience gained through any WoW activity.
Consider Changing Professions to Gathering
With a new expansion comes the need for new materials and reagents for crafters. The start of the new content is the perfect time to change your characters to gathering professions -- one if you’d just as soon hold on to an actual crafting profession. Mining and Herbalism both offer a great way to earn gold by selling the ore and / or plants on the Auction House and they both give pretty decent experience just for mining or picking a flower. It’s a win-win scenario -- earn bonus (and easy) experience and simultaneously earn a tidy profit in gold. You can always change professions later on when the market for crafting materials slides.
Enable War Mode for the XP Bonus BUT FIRST…
One of the best things you can do for yourself during the first few days of Battle for Azeroth is to enable War Mode. Rest easy, confirmed PvEers -- doing so doesn’t mean you’re going to be out stalking the enemy, though you can, of course. War Mode provides players with a 10% boost to XP as well as access to PvP talents (the Gladiator Medallion + three others you can choose).
The first few days, players will be questing and levelling on their own faction’s island and it is unlikely that enemy players will be present so being in War Mode will not be as “dangerous” as it will be later.
HOWEVER: There is one thing to do before you enable War Mode -- go retrieve your Heart of Azeroth necklace from Magni. Here’s why according to Redditor SoulSoBreezy:
One of the first things you'll do in BFA is head down to Silithus, a contested zone, to speak with Magni for a turn in, then take a teleport pad down to where you obtain the Heart.
In the meantime, the area around Magni is considered no fly, and no sanctuary component is in place. Adding to that is the fact that clicking on the teleport pad has a cast time that can be interrupted.
So, either turn War Mode off before fetching the Heart (don't forget to turn it back on because you WILL return to your capital!), or have fun AOEing the teleport pad and Magni!
Once you have your necklace, all are good to go.
Update Your Add-ons
One of the final things you’ll want to do is update all of your add-ons. With backend changes to World of Warcraft, most, if not all, add-ons have been changed as well. In addition, many add-ons have expansion-specific things to track, so you’ll definitely want to get the latest version.
The quickest way to do so is to get the Twitch desktop client and set the default start page to Curse Add-ons and then it’s a simple one-button push to “update all”. There are a few that aren’t on Curse, but not many (I’m looking at you, ElvUI!).
Then It’s Off to War, Soldier
You can learn a lot more about what you’ll be experiencing, about the new features and systems by visiting WoWHead and by checking out Taliesin & Evietls video below. Both will give you plenty of ideas about where to start and how to make the best use of your time.
FOR THE ALLIANCE!
FOR THE HORDE!
FOR SMOOTHER LEVELING!
PS For those who will be trying to hit max level before dawn and a new workday arrives, be sure to check these handy tips for doing so responsibly:
- sleep and rest - even a power nap will help
- stay hydrated - energy drinks won't cut it
- eat non-sugary food
- listen to some music to stay focused
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