Cataclysm Alchemy Leveling Guide (450-525)

At long last the posts you've been waiting for! Yes, I'm finally writing some leveling guides for Cataclysm tradeskills. We've only got a few weeks left before this Beta is likely to end, so I guess I have to start leveling. I'm still not entirely comfortable with some of the professions at this stage. Therefore I'm just going to start with the ones that look most viable and hope the others get some love before I get to them. Right now Alchemy is pretty solid so it's getting the first guide :)

When you unlock Illustrious rank at 450 skill, your WotLK flasks and epic gem recipes will still be yellow. You could stock up materials and make a bunch of flasks if you want to try them. You will only get a handful of skill points that way as flasks become green at 457. Most of the recipes you'll be learning will turn yellow within five skill points, so be prepared to change recipes frequently. For those who are curious, you CAN level this up in one day if you have the proper ingredients. Getting those ingredients will be the hard part.

The main roadblock will be getting your hands on either 120 volatile life for flasks or 60 uncommon gems for transmuting. If you have a mining character, I would suggest the transmute route. At the current drop rate of 15% for volatile life, you'd need to collect about 40 stacks of herbs. If you have a Jewelcrafter who can prospect your ore, you could probably get the 60 gems you need in 15-20 stacks of ore. The flasks also require 24 herbs per flask while the gem transmute only uses 3 herbs. I think the transmute path will be the least time consuming.

Every five skill points you'll learn 2-3 new recipes. While you can use any of the recipes you learn, my list uses a certain priority. Volatile Life is avoided at all costs, so we will not be making flasks. If you want to use it you can, but I'm not including it. If you have enough volatile life to make flasks you plan to use, feel free to substitute it for gem transmutes. I would not make flasks just to level, I would prefer that you save your volatile life to make your trinket. It's also used to transmute volatiles for other professions, something you'll appreciate when you need them to level Tailoring, Leatherworking, Engineering or Blacksmithing.

I'm skipping all Heartblossom because you can't gather it at level 80. Unless you think there's a reasonable chance that you'll hit 82 the first day, we can't use Heartblossom in our leveling process. In addition, I try to minimize use of Whiptail and Twilight Jasmine. We can't skip them entirely, but we can use them sparingly. I'm favoring Cinderbloom over Stormvine and Azshara's Veil. Cinderbloom is all over the place while the others are not, so I lean toward it in the recipe selections.

Ok - let's get on with the show!

450-455 5x Ghost Elixir (2 cinderbloom)
455-460 5x Deathblood Venom (1 stormvine)
460-465 5x Volcanic Potion (1 azshara's veil + 1 cinderbloom)
465-470 5x Elixir of the Cobra (1 azshara's veil + 1 cinderbloom)
470-475 5x Potion of Concentration (2 azshara's veil)
475-480 5x Mighty Rejuvenation Potion (2x whiptail)
480-485 5x Prismatic Elixir (1 whiptail + 1 cinderbloom)
485-490 5x Potion of the Tol'vir (1 whiptail + 1 stormvine)
490-495 5x Elixir of Mighty Speed (1 stormvine + 1 twilight jasmine)
495-500 5x Mythical Healing Potion (1 volatile life + 2 twilight jasmine)
500-505 1x Flask of Enhancement (8x azshara/cinderbloom/stormvine/jasmine/whiptail)
505-510 5x Dream Emerald (3 jasper + 3 stormvine)
510-515 5x Ember Topaz (3 hessonite + 3 cinderbloom)
515-520 5x Ocean Sapphire (3 zephyrite + 3 azshara's veil)
520-525 5x Amberjewel (3 alicite + 3 whiptail)

This list will look different when leveling a few weeks after Cataclysm is out. First, the 470-480 range could be done with Deepstone Oil + Mysterious Potion if you had fishing and access to Deepholm. That's my preferred method. Also, I would use Elixir of Impossible Accuracy at 480 and Elixir of the Master at 495. Both of those require Heartblossom, so I left them off this list.

You'll notice at 500 that I have a Flask of Enhancement. This item will give you five skill points when crafted. The other options at 500 are flasks that require 24 herbs and 6 volatile life but only give one skill point when crafted. I thought 5 skill points for 40 herbs was a better deal than than 1 skill point for 24 herbs. In my opinion this is the cheapest way to get to 505.

At 515 you can make Ocean Sapphire or Demonseye. I went with Ocean Sapphire because Nightstones are a heavily used item to level Jewelcrafting. Especially if you find yourself buying the gems, you'll have an easier time getting your hands on blue vs purple. You might also prefer to save your purples for a JC alt. You can craft Demonseye if neither of these is a consideration for you.

To wrap up, here's the master shopping list for my Alchemy list:

48 - Cinderbloom
38 - Stormvine
43 - Azshara's Veil
43 - Whiptail
23 - Twilight Jasmine
5 - Volatile Life
15 each - Jasper | Hessonite | Zephyrite | Alicite

And good luck to everyone who's going for a Realm First!


  1. Just to confirm, I can get my level 80 alt to 525; all recipes you have encountered are from trainers - nothing from TH, no rep recipes or world drops or instance drops (like some WotLK JC)

    BTW, will my 460 JC be able to prospect all the raw mats used here. Most of my alchemists are transmute spec so that is a further reason to go transmute.

    An unanswerable question is cost. But you have any guess if any of this will be useful? Can I recover any costs? Or is it just like the engineering knife or pack of endless pockets - just used for leveling and sold way under costs. I know I should wait till January to level my professions yet know I won't.

    Thanks again!

  2. Yes, right now all the recipes for Alchemy are trainer-based. I'm not aware of any drop/rep recipes and the Alchemy dude in TH just sells supplies.

    Your JC will be able to prospect obsidium but not elementium. Elementium requires 475 JC, which your alt won't have. You could level up your JC to 475 I suppose, but you'd be eating up the exact green gems you're trying to send your Alchemist. I would only resort to this if you can't find enough obsidium due to mining competition.

    As to cost, the original version of this list included a few other recipes that I felt were more marketable. Ultimately I had to remove them over the Heartblossom issue.

    I would say the biggest duds are likely to be the Prismatic Elixir and Potion of Concentration. There are a few others that will probably end up as niche raid items (Deathblood/Volcanic/Tolvir). Ultimately I think you'll end up making more money than someone who waits until January because you'll be able to transmute blue gems/metas/pyrite/truegold on Day 1. Truegold especially is required for high-end Blacksmithing (like titansteel) and you're the only one who can make it. You'll easily make your money back by selling your CD on that.

  3. Wowinsider just posted an article stating that you all recipies above skillevel 500 can only be accessed from the faction vendors in Twilight Higlands. This means you have to level up in order to go above skill 500.

  4. Hi Kaliope,

    First, thank you for your great site, very helpfull for WoW crafters ;)

    My question is about the CD on transmutes blue quality gem : it appears that wowhead data doesn't show any CD.

    So, is it right ? No reason anymore to have more than one transmute master alchemist ?

    Thank you again et sorry for my english...

  5. Anon: That is correct, there is no transmute on blue gems. In fact you have to use those recipes to reach the new cap, so it would be frustrating if they were on CD. I think Blizzard probably figures that blue gems are easy to get from prospecting so there's no need for throttling.

    And your English is very good, no worries :)

  6. Thanks Kaliope for your response (and for my english^^)
    So, maybe epic gems will be introduced later in Cataclysm with CD like in Wotlk and, at this moment, having more than one alchimist Master of transmute will be usefull.
    Waiting this moment, perhaps it would be a good idea to change spec to my alchimists (4 x transmutes spec) to have one master of potions and one of elixirs... but this last one seems expensive in terms of herbs... will see !
    Continue your great job to feed us more info on cataclysm ;)

  7. Yes, I believe epic gems will be coming in a future patch and not with the Cataclysm launch. We did not get epic gems right away in Burning Crusade either, so that's an unlikely scenario.

    It's up to you whether to switch a Transmute alchemist or not. Right now Alchemists are the only ones who can create Truegold (a transmute), which I expect to be in demand for epic Plate recipes. So you might want to keep a couple of those 4 as transmute to capitalize on the Truegold frenzy :)

  8. which alchemy specialty would you recommend? I was thinking transmute for the beginning

  9. Well I have always preferred Transmute, so I'm biased there. But even in this case, I think Transmute will be the most valuable spec in the early weeks for several reasons. One is the transmute living elements spell, which lets you convert volatile life to other volatiles. I haven't been able to confirm this yet, but if you can proc extras of that it will be quite valuable. There's also Truegold, which only alchemists can make and is used in numerous Blacksmithing and Engineering epic recipes. Alchemists can also transmute Pyrite, which is like titanium in WotLK. Plus we can make all the various rare/meta gems which are the best quality available in Cataclysm. I think all of those are strong reasons to go Transmute.

  10. Has there been any word as to whether Vial of the Sands will be a discoverable recipe or a world/raid drop?

  11. Sadly, no. I have not seen this recipe anywhere yet. For certain it's not on the trainer or the TH vendor. Perhaps it's a rep item, last time I checked all the Quartermasters -- none were selling recipes. No one on Wowhead seems to know either. I wish I had more information on this item, but I sure don't.

  12. I have two lev 80 alchemists, one specializes in elixirs and the other potions - making consumables for our guild. If I had to switch one to transmutes, which would you suggest I drop?

  13. I would lean toward potions as the one to drop. I think buff items like elixirs will be a higher priority for players in the early weeks of leveling. I could make a good argument for some of the potions such as Treasure Finding and Deepholm, which I think would be good sellers too. In my mind it's fairly close between these two. It might be best to decide based on your personal experience of whether you do better with potions or elixirs in terms of sales value.

  14. where are the alch trainers in Mt. Hyjal? Or do I need to return to Org to train?

  15. Just like to say thanks to your guide I was able to get server first!

  16. Trainers are in Org/UC/IF/SW

    Gratz Dainan - that's awesome!!

  17. Thanks very much for the guide ^_^
    It also allowed me to get Realm first alchemy.
    Much appreciated.

    Zarende - Khaz'Goroth

  18. I had to level an 80 alt to 525 Alchemy to prepare for my JC Realm First race. I did it this morning, 36 hours after release, and the herbs were cheap, compared to yesterday when people were racing for Realm First Alchemist. I did the entire 450-525 leveling using your guide for less than 3000 gold, including training fees. Thanks so much for all your work! When people ask me about professions, I always tell them to google "kaliope crafting blog". :)

    (One minor correction to this guide: in the totals you didn't account for the extra 15 cinderbloom required for the 510-515 transmutes.)

  19. Gratz Zarende - that's AWESOME!!

    Hobbes: I'm glad the information helped you out and I THANK YOU for sending more readers my way =) You're dead on about the Cinderbloom, I try to double/triple check my numbers but sometimes a bad one still gets thru, lol. Fixed.

  20. At this point, theres only the stuff from the alkym trainer, or am i missing something ? found trader for Lw, tailoring, bs etc...

    am i right we have to wait or ?


  21. The only recipes I'm aware of are from the Alchemy trainer. There is an alchemy mount in the game data, but I did not find anyone selling it. It may be a dungeon drop, discovery, world drop. The source is not listed on Wowhead either, but there is speculation that it's a discovery item.

  22. I wasn't trying for realm first, but just maxed alchemy with the help of your guide and am so happy! I appreciate your consideration at each step of the way. The low level herbs are actually harder to get at this point than the higher level ones. :p Thank you so much for your time and help! -Chris/Sen

  23. I'm so glad the guide helped you :) Not everyone has the stamina and motivation to go after a Realm First and that's ok! I still like the idea of leveling up to capitalize on the huge market opportunities we're getting this week.

  24. As a blacksmith pushing for his tanking set I need a rather hefty number of truegold bars. I'm after confirmation as to what a transmute specialist offers in relation to truegold as opposed to a non-specialised alchemist.

    Do they get a chance of procs or, as I have heard hints of, require less materials per transmutation? Any help would be most welcome.

    Don't worry, I tip very well for cooldowns even when told they're free due to a skill up.

  25. Transmute specialists should have the possibility of getting procs when they transmute truegold. This is a generalization, as I didn't actually do the transmute in the Beta more than once. I've never seen a change in mats for transmute recipes done by a transmute specced Alchemist, so I'm not sure where that's coming from.

    Make sure you arrange ahead of time to get the extras if they happen, some transmute Alchemists expect to keep the procs. Especially if someone is offering free transmutes, you can almost guarantee they plan to keep procs.

  26. great guide, i've used it on several chars.


  27. The vial seems to drop from Canopic Jar you find in archeology

  28. True, there's some speculation that the recipe for the Alchemy mount can be looted from a gray jar found via Archaeology. So far only the Wowpedia site is showing this information.

    The user comments on Wowhead have two players claiming to have looted it and several others claiming no recipe inside the jar. If you're interested in finding this recipe you can certainly start working on your Archaeology skill. If you have no interest in Archaeology, I'd hold off until we get better confirmation on this.

  29. Level 78 alchemist here (do have Cata), and hit 525/525 alchemy. The trainer does not provide the Transmute: Truegold recipe. Is there a character level requirement to get it??


  30. Well I know that my daughter was able to get the Truegold transmute recipe from the trainer for her 85 alchemist. If you're not able to see the recipe, try a different trainer? Either that or there's a level restriction on that particular recipe. Your situation is definitely strange, but I know the recipe is available from the trainers.

  31. My level 80 alchemist got to 525, and was able to get the transmute truegold recipe from the trainer in Org. Thanks for the great levelling guide.

  32. Congrats on 525 and thanks for sharing your info with us!

  33. Thanks for this guide!!! I did substitute the alchemist stone since I'm a mage and can use that trinket. Found you through your guest spot on Call to Auction - you have a great site!

  34. Good thinking Anon :) I left the trinket out under the assumption that folks would be short on volatile life during the leveling process. But if you have enough and want the trinket - go for it!