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Breakfast Topic: What makes a leveling spec work for you?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

This Breakfast Topic comes largely in response to this very insightful article about how rotations have changed over the ages. While reading it, I began to think about how I will pore over theorycrafting sites to find the optimal DPS rotation, healing build, or tanking strategy. But I only do this for my max-level characters. While I'm leveling, it's pretty much happy-go-lucky. I'll occasionally look up what spec might be best for leveling, but sometimes I don't care about optimal leveling. I just want to have fun and mess around with the character and how to play it.

For example, everyone always said that combat is the best leveling spec for a rogue. I however, loved assassination, so that's what I stuck with. I tried out combat, but I hated it. No stealth? Swords or maces, not daggers? That's not a rogue, that's a weak warrior! Same with my warlock; affliction is supposed to be best, but to me, warlocks are all about demon summoning, so I went with demonology. It just made sense.

Of course, when I hit the level cap and start doing raids, that's when I'll delve into what are the optimal rotations, enchants, gems, itemization, etc. That stuff matters at that point. But leveling for me is all about having fun and learning your class. Leveling is a long and tough process; it doesn't make any sense not to enjoy it as much as you can.

How do you like to level? Do you play it fast and loose with your talents, or do you carefully consider where each precious point goes?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts

Breakfast Topic: Is your main a former alt?

This Breakfast Topic has been brought to you by Seed, the Aol guest writer program that brings your words to WoW Insider's pages.

My love of WoW started pretty slowly. Off and on since probably vanilla, I'd sign up for the 10-day free trials. Though the game was interesting and enjoyable, I never cared enough to actually buy a subscription -- that is, until I started my lovely undead female rogue. There was just something about sneaking through the shadows, baiting my targets and emerging in a flurry of blows to dispatch my adversaries before retreating to the darkness from whence I came. I loved it. I couldn't get enough of it. So I bought the expansions and signed up. I had become a full-fledged WoW player. I dinged 80, joined a guild, raided Naxx and Ulduar and even became one of our best DPSers. Life as a rogue was good.

At some point, I decided it would be fun to start leveling a shaman. I'm not going to lie; it was awful at first. Going from the quick-moving, quick-killing, quick-thinking rogue to a troll who just dopily stood there slowly casting Lightning Bolt as his enemy wailed on him was not even almost fun. But everything changed once I got a few BoAs for him and started leveling as enhancement. I had found a new love. Everything about enhancement was just so much better than being a rogue: pretty colors, flashy spells and much more variety in rotation -- not to mention the ability to heal if I ever get bored of beating the snot out of every monster I see.

Now, my shaman is geared in four pieces of tier 10 with all the top-end enchants and gems, and even my resto off spec isn't far behind. Meanwhile, my rogue languishes at the top of character select screen in welfare epics, never having seen the inside of ToC or ICC -- and she probably never will. And honestly, I don't know if I feel guilty for abandoning her.

Has anyone else had this experience? Have you ever leveled an alt for fun, only to discover it was more enjoyable than your main? Has leveling an alt ever given you a newfound love and appreciation for the game?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics, Guest Posts