My last post focused on Herbalism, so it's only natural that I should follow up with Alchemy. The main reason Herbalism got any attention at this stage was because I wanted to collect some mats to test out Alchemy. "But Kaliope," you say, "didn't you have to leave your Alchemist out of Beta?". "Why yes I did!", I respond. My guild leader, who is in the Beta with me, has been kind enough to make his Alchemist available for testing purposes :)
So far, Alchemy has been the easiest craft to level. I'm sure this isn't shocking since that was also true in Burning Crusade. I believe it also has the lowest requirement for materials. I was able to hit 420 Alchemy with 4 stacks of Goldclover, 1/2 a stack of Tiger Lily, 1/2 a stack of Adder's Tongue and 12 Pygmy Suckerfish. It's possible to be even more boring and power all the way from 375-420 with 5 stacks of Goldclover and the Crazy Alchemist's Potion recipe. For some reason, the Crazy Alchie pot stays orange all the way up to 415 and it's still yellow until 425. I don't know if this will change before release, but right now it's a breeze to level Alchemy.
Realistically, you can make any potion you want based on the herbs you have available. I managed to collect a stack of Tiger Lily and a couple stack of Adder's Tongue, so I threw in appropriate recipes just to mix things up. It's not necessary to do that, but you'll end up with more useful items if you do. I also farmed some pygmy suckerfish just to see how viable that would be and because I was curious about them. Right now farming pygmy fish in a PITA. It has a 10% drop rate in inland open water, which means you have to fish lakes (not the coastal areas) and you can't fish spawned pools. It's incredibly boring, but the upside is that I leveled my fishing skill to 415 (future post coming soon).
You may be curious about any old-world recipes you can use to power up after Lich King goes live. My suggestion would be to skip that unless you're just super desperate to max Alchemy as soon as possible. The recipes you see in your book now will not look the same when you enter Northrend, you can pretty much downgrade everything one color level. All Burning Crusade flasks are yellow in WotLK, as are the Major Protection potions. 365 recipes like Elixir of Empowerment are also yellow instead of orange. All Burning Crusade primal transmutes are green except Mana > Fire, that was still orange for some reason (likely an error). The only items I saw that were still orange were the SSO trinket recipes, the Mana>Fire transmute and one flask (Chromatic Wonder) which I suspect is also an error. So unless you want to grind flasks and hope you can sell them after WotLK goes live, I think I'd just go the normal route with Northrend herbs. You may have noticed that there are new flasks on the trainer starting at 435, so old flasks probably won't have much marketability once the new ones are unlocked on your server.
Something strange I noticed while leveling was that several of the new recipes have character level requirements on them. This may or may not change before release, but I found it odd. Northrend Alchemy Research can only be learned after level 75, regardless of your Alchemy skill. Runic Mana and Runic Healing potions also have a level requirement of 75 at this time, I have no idea why. My borrowed level 70 Alchie was unable to learn any of these items, despite having the proper Alchemy skill. Another thing that you might find interesting, specializations appear to be working on the Northrend recipes. I procced extra elixirs on my helper, who apparently was Elixir spec (I'm like "why am I getting extra pots?", lol!). One more tidbit, the Titanium transmute is going to be HUGE. I think at least comparable to Arcanite in vanilla WoW, and possibly even more lucrative. Right now titanium bars are the most expensive trade item I've seen on the Beta server. Just something to think about while you're planning your progression past the 425 mark.
And in case you didn't figure it out from all the recipe links sprinkled in the article, the Alchemy list has been updated on Crafter's Tome to include all WotLK trainer recipes as of the latest patch. Enjoy!