Just Like Starting Over (aka Thriving as a Noob)

I assume it's only me who heard John Lennon singing just then. No matter. For the last few months I've been working on a Belf Death Knight to become my Hordie spy for data gathering purposes. Since all ten of my character slots on my normal realm are full, I had to put her on a different realm with no support network. Unless you count a few lowbie toons under level 25 as a support network, I don't.

My main goal is to level her up to 74 so she can portal to Dalaran and hopefully be able to access any new travel options that Cataclysm has to offer. I'll need her in the next Beta to help me scout out Horde travel hubs and vendors. So I may have to keep leveling her closer to 80, we'll have to see what things look like in the Beta.

That said, it's practically impossible for me to have a new toon and not have any professions. I literally cannot bear to walk past herbs/ore/dead critters without feeling the pang of a missed opportunity. Since I lack a support network on my new realm, I decided to take the stock "noob" advice and level two gathering skills. As soon as my DK was done with her special starting area, we went to Eversong, The Barrens, etc and leveled skinning and mining. Mining + Herbalism probably would have been more lucrative, but I didn't really want to deal with mini-map toggling.

Other than the time I spent leveling my gathering skills to the Vanilla cap (300), I've made no special effort to farm, just collecting items I passed while questing. Meanwhile, I had enough money to buy myself a flying mount as soon as I got to Thrallmar. When I hit level 70, I had over 1000 gold and at level 72 I now have over 2000 gold. As I said, I put in no special effort to farm ore beyond what it took to level the skill. Here are some pics I took (one at 70, one at 72) to document my stash:

I wanted to share this story for all you newer or just plain struggling players who think it's impossible to make money in established server economies. You don't need rare patterns or insane amounts of time invested in farming to make money. I'm finding that Vanilla/Outland materials are often more valuable than Northrend stuff. I don't think this is particularly shocking, naturally level 80 peeps don't want to go hang out in Searing Gorge or Nagrand. And they are willing to pay 40-50g for a stack of ore that saves them the trip. I made the bulk of my money selling ore, leather and green drops that I found while questing through Azeroth and Outland.

I strongly recommend dual gathering for anyone who's new to WoW and wants to enjoy their time in the game with plenty of pocket money to see them through. At any time you can drop one of your gathering skills and replace it with a manufacturing profession. But if you're hurting for money, running as a dual gatherer is still a perfectly legitimate way to fund your toon. Those of you who are leveling alts can take advantage of the scarcity of non-WotLK mats by saving these items while you're leveling and putting them on the Auction. You'd be surprised at the kind of items that sell well. Anything that is used to power-level a craft should be easy to sell.

Armor with decent stats also sells fairly well. In terms of random armor drops, obviously gear that's appropriate for Death Knights is more popular than other types, but that will change with Cataclysm. Personally I've started banking my rare quality items for when people start rerolling new toons later this year. Why should I sell perfectly good gear for the price of a shard when I can probably get primo bucks for it in six months? No thanks, I can wait :)

If you have any additional tips for folks who are new to the game and want an easy way to jump into the market, feel free to share them below!


  1. It really bugs me how bad I feel when I don't take professions on a new alt. I just started a Paladin (probably my last new alt before Cataclysm) and had decided not to take any professions. I don't raid or even run heroics as much as I'd like and if I did it'd be on my main so there's little to really GAIN from some professions in that scenario because I've enough gold to buy anything I need.

    But... dunno. As soon as I hit Ironforge for the first I predictably went and got myself some professions that I'm spending gold on just to keep going.

  2. I agree with the Outland mats selling for more than the NR ones. My wife and I farm Adamantite like mad, and it sells for more than double what Saronite ore does on our server(not telling! :) )

  3. and should you happen upon khorium it sells for even more....30-40G per BAR....and you still need alot of it for the turbo-charged flying mount