Levelling In World Of Warcraft Is Fun Again

Levelling In World Of Warcraft Is Fun Again

Before this week’s 7.3.5 update hit, levelling a freshly-made character in World of Warcraft as an experienced player was little more than a chore to do before getting to the good high-level stuff. With the introduction of level-scaling and changes to experience point requirements and monster health, levelling up is now a more enjoyable experience.

Prior to update 7.3.5 it was far too easy to level up a new character. The experience needed to advance from one level to the next was too low, resulting in players out-levelling the story quests in each zone, moving on before getting the full experience.

With low monster health and high player power (especially when players were outfitted in ridiculously powerful heirloom gear), creatures dropped like flies. Combined with easy experience gained by joining parties in the dungeon finder, the first 60 levels in the game flew by.

That’s no longer the case. I started a level one gnome warrior named Jerboa on Tuesday afternoon. With the hours I’ve put in since, she should easily be at least level 40 by now. But there she is, level 22 and loving it.

A good part of the reason it’s taking me so long is the new level-scaling system. Now that zones and their quests scale with the players level, I’m spending more time questing and less time hopping into random dungeons. And with the experience point requirements to level increased for levels 1 to 60, the random dungeons aren’t nearly the level-fests they once were, making questing a much more attractive prospect.

Another fun effect of level-scaling is that every enemy aggros now. No longer will gaining a few more experience levels render lower level creatures in a zone near-passive. There are no lower level creatures.



Blizzard upping the health of creatures in those early zones has had a profound effect on how low my health bar gets. Even decked out in a full set of heirloom gear, my little fury warrior hasn’t one-shot much of anything in her 22 levels.

Mobs that survive longer hit more often, hence my dangerously low health in the screenshot below. Players have to be a little more mindful now. That’s a good thing.

Experienced players who’d rather speed through the levelling process can still roll a healer or a tank and spend the whole process running random dungeons. If they’re really in a hurry, they can always buy one of those boosts to level 100 Blizzard offers.

But I’m enjoying the slow and steady grind. I’m visiting zones I normally would have skipped and exploring quest lines I’ve historically bypassed. Levelling has changed a great deal with this week’s update, but in many ways it reminds me of the good old days, when growing into one of Azeroth’s legendary heroes was more of an adventure.


  • Yet it seems to be the buggiest patch Blizz have ever released for WoW. Horrendous frame drop rates for entire raid groups…most people have 10-20fps in fights.

    They’re also introduced a bunch of unintended scaling issues with heroic dungeons now being easier than normal.

    • Not to mention a number of old raids being impossible to complete and certain old dungeons being ridiculously hard. Oh and a bunch of current Mythic dungeons are impossible.

      I kinda wish the scaling was optional. But that might be a bit hard to implement. After all, for *most* people if you’ve played the game through already you’re not really trying to “enjoy the story” while you level Alt #7 you’re trying to get to max level as quick as possible.

      Also, I haven’t checked the full scaling effects, but from what I understand 1-60 scales. So you walk outside Origrimmar and instead of sneezing and killing three mobs for the cooking daily you have to fight them? That seems kinda annoying.

    • theres also a crap tonne of undocumented changes affecting max levels and raids. really peeving me off atm.

  • I immensely dislike the scaling in this and games like GW2 as it ruins the fantasy of being a hero character/saviour of the world when I get jumped by some bandits goons.

    • The scaling only goes so far. Old world stuff still caps out at 60 so you still feel strong once you pass that point.

    • The scaling is limited. Old world content only scales to 60. Burning Crusade and WotLK content scale 60 to 80. Cataclysm and Mop content scales 80 to 90, Warlords is 90 to 100 and Legion still takes you 100 to 110. You can still outlevel content. My 110 Death Knight is still going to destroy any vanilla to Mists content easily. It will struggle with Warlords Raids and be evenly matched in anything from legion.

    • Nope, that’s me also. Couldn’t give a flying furbolg for the end game. Mostly because teaming up invariably brings out the worst in people. I ran a guild for a couple of years, but managing the interpersonal issues of other members became too much of a job. It pretty much ruined the experience for me. These days, I log on, hit a few things, manage some inventory, then log back off.

      • Hahahaaha yes me to minus the Guild running BS. I was in a pretty decent Guild a while back, but all the personal shit people used to bring to the game and in fighting really bothered me. So now I just log on crank some tunes and run around and smack shit, well that and Battlegrounds is probably the only end game I can tolerate for some reason.

      • Seconded… I’ve ran a guild the last two expansions and both expacs had to have a break just because of the actual strain it starts to take on you in real life. Trying to juggle different personalities, people being impatient and blaming everyone else when they’re just as much at fault, people who got geared really quickly then decided they were “better” than the guild and moved onto another guild after we fed them all the loot…. Heck the last time we killed the EN on mythic and we were 4/10 on the 2nd raid when people started getting impatient (maybe 3 weeks into release of mythic content) and doing the – yeah I think I’m better than this guild now I’ve gotten all your mythic loot from the first 4 bosses. The amount of stories I could tell you… One guy who was in the guild for ages but just stopped putting effort into running dungeons to get geared or learn strats and then through a tanty when he wasn’t allowed to come. Some other kid that would just abuse others and think it was hilarious because he was 18 then was shocked when he was gkicked for being super abusive. Just endless drama. Like the other guy said, it’s like a thankless job seriously.

        Seriously…. Probably will come back for BoA but not sure if I can be assed running a guild.

    • Nope. That’s why they;ve done this. And why people like me have resubbed after all these years (literally couldn’t stand one-shotting everything without any danger while levelling)

    • The higher level friend will most likely one shot everything and cripple your xp. That said nothing stopping you from leveling with them.

    • Depends on the level of the friend. Each zone’s mobs will level up to the upper-range of that zone.

      So, for example, if you’re questing in, I dunno… Eversong Woods because blood elves are the coolest, the mobs are going to always match your level until they hit 20, at which point that’s as far as they go. So your level 40 friend is still going to wipe the floor with them.

      Now the real trick that I haven’t tested yet is what happens if you party with someone who’s a fair level difference, but close enough to scale. Say, one friend is 20, the other is 10. Will mobs turn 20 – the highest party level – as soon as they’re tapped by anyone in the party? Or will they turn 10 if tapped by the 10, then turn 20 when the 20 gets involved? Does the scaling take effect by proximity to affect agro, or is it only on tapping? If two parties of dramatically different levels are in close proximity, how do nearby mobs scale? If a lower-level, unrelated party taps a mob and sets it at level 10, if you as a level 20 heal one of those players will the mob suddenly max out to 20?

      Lots of fun to test with!

      • With respect to your second question, if it works the same way as Legion’s zone scaling works, the damage done by each player is normalised and applied as a percentage. So a swing from the 109 that does 10% damage to his version of the mob does 10% to the 101’s version of the mob as well.

        I don’t know if that’s the case with this scaling, but since it’s based on the same technology I would assume so.

        • It seems to be working that way. Additionally, landing some hits on an already-tagged mob appears to give you credit for killing it, even in the lowbie zones, which is great!

          Spent Sat/Sun introducing the GF to WoW and we’re now 40 and have completed… nearly two zones. Eversong Woods and most of Hillsbrad Foothills.

          I get the feeling the only way she’s ever going to see all the zones is through alts or smashing through everything for completion’s sake on whatever class character she decides should be her ‘main’.

          • The tagging thing was something they introduced in Warlords I believe. The first five groups or individuals from the same faction to hit a creature get the tap, anyone else gets a grey bar. The exception is world bosses that are open to everyone.

            When I do questing, I just do the zone quests whether I’m over-level or not. The old world zones have some great storylines since the Cata revamp that are worth doing regardless of whether they’re challenging or not. Hillsbrad is a great one, but don’t neglect Silverpine.

          • Yeah, some of the Hillsbrad stuff references Silverpine, and from what I’ve seen, hints strongly at the future of the Horde and Sylvanas’ motivations (plus gives a clue as to Genn Greyman’s otherwise inexplicable beef?). Might actually go do that AFTER Silverpine. Should still keep getting exp til 60 at least…

            Shame. I was kinda hoping to do plaguelands before Northrend, but we’re gonna run out of levels.

  • I still wish you could turn off XP so we can go back to the good old days of LVL 19 PVP twinks lol

    • Level locking is a thing. Slahtz in the Hall of the Brave in Orgrimmar, or Behsten in the War Room in Stormwind; both will freeze XP for a fee. They’ve been in the game for like 8 years.

      • That said Twink scene is really small and the access to twink gear is now limited by the scalingmobs will scale the loot including BoEs.

        Or you can wait for classic to twink again.

      • Uh see for some reason I thought they were taken out of the game. Don’t mind me I am just noob.

        • All good mate. It’s been a while since I checked, granted, but I’m pretty sure they’re still there.

  • Most people will wait for
    a) New allied races cause they have a 1 to 110 achievement to unlock transmog race armor
    b) The BfA expansion probably includes a free 110 booster… and after so many boosters with past expansions… running out of classes to unlock.

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