Monk Beginner Leveling – Blissfully Simplistic or Utterly Boring?

Are the lack of standard abilities for the Monk at lower levels a turn off for new players?


Being the newest class to be introduced to World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria, Monks are without a doubt the hot new item in the game. Everyone and their brother seems to want to delve into the world of their inner Kung Fu and roll a Monk. However, while most players seem to ultimately love their high level Monks, at lower levels the Monk class in Mists of Pandaria could be said to be little less than exciting.

I'll be the first to say when I finally got to create my own Monk I was, like many other players, as happy as a kid in a candy store. I begin to level at a rather fast pace with high hopes, however, while I enjoyed the new setting (I chose to roll a Pandaren Monk), I could not help but feel like something was missing along the way.

Leveling Abilities? What Leveling Abilities?

The first glaring hole players will likely notice during the early levels of Monk leveling is the lack of abilities. At first all seems pretty standard as far as new characters go in World of Warcraft. As per usual with any new toon, Monks start out with one basic ability at level one; Jab. Jab builds Chi and can easily lay out any enemies you meet at this point.

Then at level 3 your Monk will gain the Tiger Palm ability. Tiger palm allows you to use the Chi you gain from Jab and also gives you a little variety in the mix. Things continue to look up at level 5 as you , one of the most epic abilities in game, Roll.

Monk Roll

After Roll (which is a pretty hard act to follow), comes Blackout Kick. After this the Monk abilities that you end up using in your normal damage rotation pretty much dry up. Kaput. Done.

Even after you choose your talent spec at level 10, there is a distinct lack of major game changing abilities for the Monk. Basically, you will be stuck using the same basic abilities over and over again until you hit at least level 20. This of course can easily make many players very sad pandas pretty quickly.

Panda Crying

However, there is a shining light at the end of the tunnel. The Monk class redeems itself entirely at higher levels, the question is, will most players make it that far?

Moving On Up

Around level 20 things significantly improve for the Monk, no matter which spec you have chosen things just get more exciting. More abilities become available to add to your rotation and as you progress further up the leveling tree. Overall the whole Monk experience gets more exciting, and we can look forward to cool new abilities like Touch of Death and Spinning Crane Kick.

Spinning Crane Kick

The problem here is that most players aren't willing to stick with the class, or the game, long enough to see the awesomeness that the Monk class has in store for them. While I am willing to work past the initial slowness of the first few levels, many players are not. In fact according to Blizzard reports, most new players give up on a character or the game in general well before level 10.

The Monk has a ton of potential, however, the lack of abilities available at lower-levels can be a big turn off for players who are looking for a class with a little more excitement. None of us expect ability after ability to be thrown at us as we level up, that would just end up being downright confusing. However, I do think in order to appeal to more players, especially those new to the game, the Monk could stand to have a few more abilities thrown into the mix during lower levels.

While my leveling experience wasn't totally bad, and I plan on continuing to level and play my Monk, I still can't decide how I feel about my early leveling experience. Have you leveled a Monk? What are your thoughts on the early leveling experience? Should there be more abilities available at lower levels? Share your thoughts and opinions with us in the comment section below!

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