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#1 - 2014/03/26 05:00:00 PM
Boosting 101 - New to 90 Guide

The Level 90 Character Boost has arrived! There might very well be a shiny Boost token glittering on you character selection screen just waiting for you to use it. Or, perhaps you’ve already Boosted a character, but you’re not quite sure what to do next.

We’re here to help! We’ve assembled useful resources, official and fansite alike, so you can make informed decisions regarding which character to Boost, learn how to play and gear your new class like a pro, and make the most of your new hero.

You don’t need to read every single source of information contained in this guide, but we wanted to provide you with the tools for success with your new level 90 character. Veteran or newcomer, there’s almost certainly something here for you.

Step 1: Making Your Choice
Step 2: Learning the Ropes
Step 3: Add Ons, Macros, and More
Step 4: Gearing on Up
Step 5: Ready? FIGHT!

Step One: Making Your Choice

The first question you’ll probably have (and the topic of many new forum threads) is, “What race and class should I Boost?” Perhaps it’s the class that you’ve always wanted to play, but never got around to playing. Or, how about an existing character that you want to start using at level 90 right now?

It’s a good idea to think about what class roles interest you the most, and which faction you’d like your new character to join. This might be an ideal opportunity to pick up that opposite faction character so you can join friends on the other side, or just to see what World of Warcraft looks like from a different perspective.

Boost Tip: Profession Boost! Something to keep in mind when you Boost a level 60 or higher character, is that you’ll also get a Profession boost. If you don’t have professions selected, then ‘appropriate’ professions will be selected for you. (i.e. Cloth- Enchanting & Tailoring, Leather/Mail- Leatherworking & Skinning, Plate- Blacksmithing & Mining) If you’d rather pick your own professions, simply log in to the character you are going to Boost first, train the professions you want, then log out and Boost the character. Once you’ve completed your boost, those professions (as well as First Aid) will be automatically bumped up to a skill level of 600. Keep in mind that you will still need to earn or purchase any recipes you haven’t already learned.

There are many additional resources that can be found within the World of Warcraft community. Reading over the following guides can help you get a bead on what to expect from each class, and they’re especially helpful if you’ve never played a particular class before:

Icy Veins

WoWpedia

WoWJuju

WoWInsider

Death Knight - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/10/10/should-you-play-a-death-knight-in-wow/

Druid - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/05/15/should-you-play-a-druid-in-wow/

Hunter - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/06/05/should-you-play-a-hunter-in-wow/

Mage - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/08/01/should-you-play-a-mage-in-wow/

Monk - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/04/22/should-you-be-playing-a-monk/

Paladin - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/06/13/should-you-play-a-paladin-in-wow/

Priest - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/06/18/should-you-play-a-priest-in-wow/

Rogue - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/06/27/should-you-play-a-rogue-in-wow/

Shaman - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/08/22/should-you-play-a-shaman-in-wow/

Warlock - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/05/07/should-you-be-playing-a-warlock/

Warrior - http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/08/29/should-you-play-a-warrior-in-wow/

Step 2: Learning the Ropes

Even experienced players can feel slightly overwhelmed when logging into a character class that they’ve never played before. There are spells and ability rotations Rotations
A ‘rotation’ refers to triggering abilities in an optimal order to accomplish your class role.
to learn, hotkeys to assign, talents to choose, and glyphs Glyphs
Glyphs modify your existing abilities to make them more effective, change their functionality, or add cosmetic effects.
to buy.

New Player Tip: Don’t forget to check out the Core Abilities tab in the Spell Book (P). Your main class abilities will be listed there, along with some basic advice regarding when and how each ability should be used.

It’s a cliché, but in World of Warcraft, knowledge truly does translate into ULTIMATE POWER. Invest a little bit of time and research, and you’ll find ways to make your new character more potent and effective.

 

Class Guides - Learning your character’s primary spells, how best to use them, optimal gear, glyphs, and talents are all vital parts of playing your class well. This guide will help get you started, and this site provides a comprehensive primer on the finer details of each class and spec that you’ll want to know.

Official Forums - The Class Forums on the World of Warcraft official forums can offer a wealth of knowledge about your new character.

Training Dummy - After you get your hotkeys mapped out, and you have some idea about what abilities you should be using and when, a good next step for damage dealing DPS characters, and even tanks, is to visit a Training Dummy. You can practice your ability rotations, get familiar with gaining and spending your class resources, and make sure that your important hotkeys are easy to access.

Proving Grounds – It’s time to put what you’ve learned to work, and the Proving Grounds provide an excellent way to learn the basics, and then hone and practice your class role. Even better, Proving Grounds are done solo, free from the pressure that might be present in a group set on taking down bosses. You can try new things, and learn your abilities without fear of consequences. Given that there are no target dummies suitable for healing, it’s also a fantastic way to develop your healing skills, learn mana management, and work on prioritizing your healing spells according to the situation you’re facing. Whether dealing damage, tanking, or healing, Proving Grounds will help you develop skills that will serve you well throughout your time in Azeroth. Visit the Temple of the White Tiger in Kun-Lai Summit, and then speak with Trial Master Rotun inside to begin.

Step 3: Add Ons, Macros, and More

Add-Ons, key-bindings, and macros are user interface (UI) tools that can help you perform at your best. They allow you to play more efficiently, react more quickly to situations as they arise, and maximize your play. You can certainly enjoy World of Warcraft without them, but many successful players reap the benefits they provide.

Macros – Macros allow you to alter one of your hotkeys to behave in different ways. For example, you could create a macro that triggers one ability when you have a friendly target, and a different ability if you have a hostile target, all on the same key. Macros are powerful tools that can help save space on the hotkey bars and help you play more efficiently. Learn the Macro basics on our Interface and Macros forum.

Key Binding – Advanced players often swear by key binding because it helps put more of a character’s abilities directly at their fingertips. It can help increase response time and efficiency, which matters during high intensity play like competitive PvP and raiding. In addition to the article hyperlinked above, you can get tips on key binding from your official Class Forum, and the Interface and Macros forum.

Add-Ons – Unlike macros and key binding, which are available to the default UI, Add-Ons are files you add to your World of Warcraft folder that actually alter how your interface behaves. There is a wide world of Add-Ons out there that can accomplish an amazing variety of goals. In addition to getting recommendations on useful Add-Ons from some of the guides and sites we’ve linked to in this blog, you can learn more about UI Add-Ons and how to install them on the official Interface and Macros forum.

Step 4: Gearing on Up

So now your character is all set up to head out into the world to tank, heal, and do some damage. You’re still wearing your Boost gear, though. It’s great for getting you started, but you can do better, and the links below will guide you to more efficient  gearing upgrades so you can move on to tougher challenges. In addition to the knowledge you’ve gained, better gear will make those experiences more fun for you and those you play with.

General Gearing TipsThis guide will not only help get you started on a path to better gear, but will also point you at some other worthwhile pursuits along the way.

PvP GearHonor will buy item level 522 gear. Remember: PvP Power and Resilience don’t consume any of an item’s stat budget, so that’s item level 522 in PvE as well. That guide will also offer methods of earning Honor to buy this gear without ever actually stepping into a Battleground, if PvP isn’t your cup of tea.

Timeless Isle – The Timeless Isle is a very practical first destination for upgrading Boost gear, but it can be mysterious to the uninitiated. Learn all about getting the rewards from chests, rare spawn creatures, and more from this guide.

Gems, Enchants, And More – Optimizing your gear for your spec will dramatically improve your performance. Ask Mr. Robot can help you figure out how to best Reforge* your gear, what gems to socket, and which enchants and improvements you can make. 
*It’s important to note that in Warlords of Draenor, Reforging will no longer be available. Keep an eye out on ongoing development updates to learn more about what this means for you and gearing up in the future.

Crafting – You can also make or buy items that are quite decent upgrades from your Boost gear. If you’ve got the materials and access to the patterns, this is also a great way to make use of the Profession Boost too. You can find out which items are useful by visiting WowHead’s item search. You can then customize your search by modifying the Source (within the drop box below the “Color” option) and selecting “Crafted by a profession”. You can then filter further by selecting Leatherworking, Tailoring, or Blacksmithing in the drop down box next to it. In addition to crafting pieces of gear or powerful item enhancements, the various crafting professions offer ways to improve existing gear in large or small ways, some of which are unique to each profession.

Step 5: Ready? FIGHT!

Knowledge is a powerful weapon. You should have a handle on your character and abilities by now. The other half of the battle is knowing who and what you’ll face, and how to defeat them. As Sun Tzu said, "Know thy self, know thy enemy. A thousand battles, a thousand victories."

Knowing just what to expect from a fight will help your Dungeon Finder and Raid Finder runs go much more smoothly, which will help you have more fun and the chance to earn loot faster too.

Raid Finder – Your first step into the raiding environment will probably be via the Raid Finder (also sometimes referred to as LFR), and it’s a great place to start. This guide will make your first steps into the Raid Finder easier.

Know Your Bosses – You might have the opportunity to eventually do Flex, Normal, and even Heroic Mode Raids. After all, those sweet, sweet Heirloom weapons are calling, and you can earn them by defeating Garrosh in all Siege on Orgrimmar raids except Raid Finder versions. Learning the fights in advance will ensure that you’re not the one left standing in the fire. Knowing the fights is also essential if you plan to do any tanking.

Tip: If you haven’t looked up a fight in advance or just need to refresh your memory, remember that the Dungeon Journal is just a key press away. Hit ‘M’ while in a dungeon to bring it up, or click the boss icon on the minimap to pull up the journal entry on that boss.

Appendix: Try Another Path

How varied the specializations (spec) are varies from class to class, but you’ll find that each spec can ‘feel’ very different from the others. If you’re playing a class that you haven’t tried before, it’s good idea to get comfortable with one spec to begin with. After you do that, then it’s also wise to try the other specs that your new character offers, both for the sake of flexibility– since different specs are often suited to different class roles– and also because another spec might just be more fun for you.

  

New Player Tip: You can change spec at any of your class trainers, as well as purchase dual spec, which will let you swap between specs without seeing a trainer. Don’t forget that different specs often benefit very differently from Secondary Stats. With that in mind, you can make gearing your new spec easier by holding on to duplicate gear tokens you find during your adventures on the Timeless Isle. You can then open them after your character is in its new spec. The stats will then be aimed for that spec, rather than your old one. The PvP gearing method can also help you more quickly earn items appropriate for your new spec.

We’d also love to hear from you! Which character did you Boost? How are you gearing up your Boosted character? Do you have tips or guides to share that we haven’t shared here? Let us know in the comments, and on the New Player Help and Guides forum.