The Levelling Game

Up until Cataclysm hit I was a complete quest junkie. I earned my Loremaster colours with pride and loved hunting down obscure and hidden quests. Since then, however, I’ve undergone a change of heart. Part of what made questing amazing for me, was the fact that you wandered into a town, a bit like a gunslinger in the Old West (or at least how I imagine it) and had your pick of dubious jobs needing doing. Kill some bad guys, fetch some bits of bear, find a lost child/pet/turtle, your quest log would fill up nicely and then you could run around doing bits and pieces as you chose.

The emphasis there should be on “chose”. Each zone always had it’s horrible quests, in my case usually the pick ups with low drop rates. However by alt number 3 you knew which ones to avoid in any given zone. Then came along Cataclysm and it’s revamped zones, where there is no avoiding that horrible quest you hate because it leads onto four or five awesome ones. Quest lines which have no relation to each other are linked in such a way to cause maximum pain.

Take for example Un’Goro Crater which was one of my favourite zones for much of the game. You arrived at Marshal’s Refuge and then you loaded up on quests. You could get a good one and half levels rambling around, collecting bones, killing dinosaurs and saving A-Me. Now though, oh how things have changed. Before you can rescue Ringo, you have to climb about taking hot spot temperatures. Two things which are completely unrelated, especially since the quest text when you return from dropping thermometers  into lava pools specifically says:

My good friend Spraggle has been fretting about something for some time now. I’d help her, but as you can see, I’m pretty comfortable right now.

Could you check in with her and see what she needs?

Oh she’s been fretting for some time you say? About the same amount of time I spent climbing the same mountain Ringo happens to be unconscious up? Perhaps even longer. It wouldn’t have hurt the flow of the zone to allow you access to both quests at once. What ever happened to offering us choice? Was having a full quest log deemed too complex for the average WoW player?

For the first time, in my six years of playing WoW, I found myself looking for other methods of levelling when it came to my latest alt.

Which brings me to my other issue with questing at the moment.  The quest rewards are paltry compared to the other aspects of the game. Dungeon blues are way ahead as are the items you can obtain through PvP (particularly below lv 60). This discrepancy isn’t just one or two levels below the PvP/Dungeon blues, its a good five to ten. Mr Harpy was still wearing his Stockades quest reward hat a good fifteen levels later because no quest had offered a replacement. So not only do you have to wade through tedious quests to get to the interesting ones, there are barely any items to look forward to either.

Levelling through PvP and dungeons on the other hand, not only allows you to garner a better understanding of your new class as you go (assuming you can stay alive) but offers proper rewards, both in terms of levelling items but also honor and then justice points which can be used to gear yourself at 85. It’s a win win situation but no matter how much I love PvP (and I do), I can’t help but feel sad every time I go out to quest with my pathetically empty quest log. I usually last until the first pick up quest before I hit the battleground queue.

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