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WoW: Cataclysm Conundrums – Creating New Alts vs. Leveling Your Main Past 80

Posted Wed, Nov 17, 2010 by Mem

The release of World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will undoubtedly be the cause for much celebration among gamers everywhere, yet despite the rush of excitement it is without a doubt already causing some players quite a few headaches. Some of these headaches stem from small things such as deciding whether one should level their professions now, or whether they should wait until after Cataclysm hits. Others come from far larger problems like trying to decide if you should go to the nearest midnight release party as a Blood Elf or Troll.

The headache I have in mind, however, is of a different sort. The headache I speak of is regarding the epic battle that is waged in a player’s mind between leveling their current character, or starting all over again with a new character. This may seem like an easy choice to make, but in reality it could be one of the hardest and most influential choices we as players ever make.  

Giving up your character who has been your representation of yourself in game for possibly your entire WoW career is no small matter. In fact if I may be so bold for players like me who are more than a little attached to their characters, creating a new “main” is almost like marrying your mistress. Sure she may be hotter, younger, and make the game fresh, but how long will the novelty really last?

And even if you aren’t torn by feelings of nostalgia regarding your old character, the daunting task of not only starting out again level wise, but also having to level up your various professions along the way can serve to turn away even the most hardcore player. That said, never is there a better time to make the switch than at the cusp of a new expansion, especially one that brings new races, race / class combos, and a whole new leveling experience to the table.

So what is a player to do? The choice is ultimately up to you, however there are pros and cons to each decision that could help to sway you in one direction or the other. Below are a few of the pros and cons of each option laid out in the hopes that you can better make your final decision:

Old Character

Pros
  • Minimal Leveling
  • Can experience end game content faster
  • Will be able to enjoy the leveling experience with the majority of your in game friends
  • Already familiar with the character

Cons
  • Stuck with the same old character
  • Competing with the masses for mob spawns and quests
  • End game content could quickly become old


New Character

Pros
  • Character gets a whole new look
  • New zones and quests to experience
  • Leveling easier than ever in Cataclysm
  • Less congestion and competition for quests in low level zones

Cons
  • Starting over at level 1
  • Re-leveling Professions
  • Longer wait before end game content is reached
  • Difficulty getting groups

After reviewing the above list perhaps you have finally made your

Will you be putting your old toon out to pasture?
choice, or perhaps you could still be engaged in an internal debate on which course of action is right for you. Regardless of which side of the fence you find yourself on once your choice is made, you may find yourself with some regrets. Don’t panic, these feelings are perfectly normal, and to help you stem the tide of possible regret, below are some suggestions to help you continue to feel like your choice was the right one.

If you decide to make a new character:


  • Don’t take on the challenge of starting over yourself. Try to find a group of other players (preferably your friends) to take on the challenge with you.

  • Prepare as many materials (including gold) as possible which will allow you to easily and quickly level your Professions.

  • If you are changing to a class you have never played before do some research before hand. Having an idea of how to play your character will make the transition easier.

If you decide to stick with your current character:


  • A change of race, faction, or overall appearance can help to give your character a fresh new feel. Don’t forget – you’ll have the option to do a paid racial switch to the new goblin and worgen races if you would like to play one, but don’t want to deal with starting back at level 1.

  • Pace yourself. Sure it’s great to be the first to get to the new end game content, but it’s not great to be the first burnt out on it.

  • Play an alt. Not only will the change of character help dispel your boredom but the leveling grind should be enough to make you glad you don’t have to do it on your main.

No matter what choice you make we here at Ten Ton Hammer hope that it turns into an amazing gaming experience. And in the event that it doesn’t, remember, in the gaming world change is always possible no matter how unrealistic it may seem. Whether you decide to rethink your decision mid-expansion, or decide to wait it out till the next  (crosses fingers) expansion pack, the choice to make a change is, and will always be yours.

For those of you wondering, I personally will be among the ranks of those who are sticking with my old musty character. Even though the temptation to switch at times has been great, I can’t seem to let go. Join us on our forums and share what character you will be starting Cataclysm with. Will it be your trusty character from way back, or a fresh new face to go with changed landscape of Azeroth? 

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