I was mucking around a little yesterday as my Dwarf Hunter alt (Bozzrom – the dwarf in the banner) and I realized just how much I missed playing Smaken, my level 73 Orc Hunter. There is quite a difference between playing a low level Hunter and playing a higher level Hunter.
Okay, that’s pretty obvious, but I’m talking about the capabilities. You really do gain a lot at the higher levels and it makes the lower levels seem weak or even more difficult.
It probably doesn’t help that Horde races tend to be more combat oriented with their racial abilities. As a dwarf I don’t get any real offensive bonuses, I get Stoneform and Find Treasure, but little else that makes a Hunter better. Even as a Night Elf, you don’t really get much that helps as a Hunter in an offensive way – the Dodge bonus is nice but that’s it. On the Horde side, you get extra damage for ranged weapons and a temporary haste as a Troll, as an Orc you get a damage increase to pet damage while also getting a self damage buff and as a Blood Elf you get a AE mana eating thing that also silences mobs for a short time which is good for interupts (I miss this on my Paladin too). Only the Tauren doesn’t appear to get a lot that is offensive. Of course, it does get that PBAE stomp that stuns.
See the difference?
I got Bozzrom up to 16 and a little bit then switched over to Lannister for a bit. I ran around questing. I finished up a quest in Hellfire and moved into Zangarmarsh where I completed a ton of quests… I think I’ve only got a few left. I was really in the mood to quest. I probably would have finished those off too but I had someone ask me to tank Ramps for them. No problem, I like instances and helping out and I probably shouldn’t be leveling too fast (sorry Chris!).
Sad thing is I think I’ve turned most of the quests in Terrokar (and some of the other zones near there) green. Ah well. I was worried about that but then I realized I probably wouldn’t get much use out of the factions in TBC once I’m into WotLK. That’s unfortunate too but I guess that’s the way things go. It’s linear or sequential if you will.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll likely come back to help out or even get some faction mounts. I do enjoy that sort of thing. It’s just too bad leveling comes so fast that I miss that content.
The game doesn’t stop at 80, it just changes.
By the way, I used to think that as soon as I hit 70 (back in TBC) with Smaken, I’d be able to jump right into raiding things like Kara. In most other MMOs that tend to be the case with some minor tweaking of gear (if any).
I was wrong. So very wrong.
I did some research and saw that in order to be able to contribute to the raid succeeding I needed a certain minimum of gear. There was even a guide that walked you through why and where to get the items (I wish I could find that guide, it was great!). There was a minimum load out and one that was ideal. Most of it came from running regular instances or were world drops. That isn’t the case for Kara now, given the cap is 80 now so 80s can crush the raid zone. But I’m almost certain you’re going to need this sort of thing for level 80.
I expect on hitting 80 I’ll need to run instances (or grind faction, marks or do arenas) for a minimum gear set to let me be useful in the heroic instances. From there I’ll get gear that helps me set up for actual raiding. It’s not as painful as it sounds but if you look at the raw recommendations, it will look pretty intimidating, especially if you’re in the 50s or even the 60s. Just remember there is a power jump in WotLK. Solo mobs will start looking like elites from TBC. The ones I was fighting as Smaken had health in the five digit range (with elites having six or seven digit ranges) but I was able to handle them. I remember it seeming like a big jump from what I was fighting in the later zones of TBC, but it was doable.
I’m looking forward to it. :)