Alright, since you guys say I don't contribute, and am just a troll, and then fail to make me the winner of that field in the awards, I get mad. Here's my guide, for all of the wrong reasons! ;)
I'll start of with the basics.
You'll want to get Skinning and Mining as your main proffessions. I would have stated fishing before they nerfed it, and it's still semi-viable...But not anywhere near as good as it used to be.
Skinning, the only way to powerlevel is just killing mobs and skinning them. I picked it up from the beginning, so I can't say how long this will take.
Sell your stuff on the AH. It will sell. Set a buyout. If there is still time to go before prime-time on the server ends, set the listing time to long. If it's almost over, go ahead and splurge on Very Long.
Mining. THIS is a money maker, and I'm sure some people are going to bitch about me revealing one of the very good mithril spots, but here we go:
I took this up at 30, and spent around 6 hours powerleveling it up to 230. As per usual, sell the stuff on the AH in smelted stacks. BUYOUT is your friend. It is the BEST thing you can do.
For getting through the copper levels, Durotar is your friend. Sorry about this for you alliance guys, but for copper and tin, you're out of luck for my advice.
The stuff is everywhere. I did a sort of lazy figure eight around the canyon right before Ogrimmar. Took me about 45 minutes to get up to tin level.
Tin is a bitch. The Barrens had the easiest route to go on, but it took a long time compaired to the other levels. Near Ashenvale there is a place with some harpies that has a fairly good tin spawn rate. From there, stick to that wall, and go south. There are spawns along that, but your goal is South Barrens. Go in circles around the Scorpid and Bristleback and Razormane areas. After a while of this, you should eventually get up to what's need.
Note: When selling on the AH, it isn't always the best idea to just smelt copper and tin into bronze, or visa versa. Check the going prices, and figure out if selling the bases or the product will sell for more. I've seen Tin going for 70s a stack and copper for 40s, while bronze was only going for 50s a stack. You lose 10s when you sell bronze.
Iron is easy, but a bit time consuming. The easiest route to just go around over and over again in is in the Shimmering Flats area of 1000 Needles. A little dangerous for alliance people, but it's still a nice round circuit. Go around the edges, and there are spawns. It also spawns veins in the middle of the little lake south of the racetrack.
Mithril is your moneymaker. Engineering and Blacksmithing both need massive quantities of the stuff, and it sells fast, and for a fairly high price. One word: Tanaris. You could travel around the whole thing, but I've found it much easier to start at Gadgetzan, and cut across the desert to the start of the bug area, checking all of the little rock outcroppings on the way.
This place is dangerous, and I even die some at 45+, but there are alot of spawns here. Travel along the edge, and then back along the outter boundry of it, and then continue on circling the map. There are alot of spawns in here, and their value shows in the defense the mobs put up. I'm not going to lie to you, it'll be hard to live consistantly here without a mount or travel form. Thistleshrub valley also has a few, and then another bug area on the edge of Un'Goro crater. There are also one or two by Zul'Farrak and the area close to Gadgetzan. They don't spawn as often as the others do, though.
As for Thorium... You'll see some in Tanaris, one spawn in Thistleshrub, and another by the level 54-61 elite dragons at the Caverns of Time... But if you want to find reliable spawns, you'll have to ask someone else. I don't know of any that aren't impossible to get to until 50+.
Now, those are just tradeskills, but there are some good mobs that drop quality loot as well.
Of course, there are humanoids. They're also some of the best grinding. They drop money, and probably have the highest chance of good world drops as well.
However, in the 30 range, there are some very good things to do:
In Stranglethorn Vale, at Lake Nefwhatever, there are the Goblin Meteorologists. They drop broken electrolanters, which vendor for about 15s each. It's about a 1/10 drop, but they are humanoids, so have good world drops anyway. They're level 34-36 or so, but are casters, so have low HP and low def, though they do do more damage than regular mobs in burst amounts.
Another favorite of mine is the Elder Mistvale Gorrilas. They don't have high def or HP, and are right next to BB. It is a bit of an opening to ganking, but they drop their whiskers or whatever often. I don't remember the name, but it's something like that. They stacks up to 10, and the stacks go for 66s or so to vendors. They also drop fangs, and have a nice selection of world drops. You can skin them consistantly for heavy and thick leather as well.
After that, there are some more goblins in the area by the Crystal mine or whatever, and they're about the same level range as the gorillas, but whenever I go there, I get adds from hell, so you'll probably want to be a level or two higher than you would be for the gorillas. Basicly the same as the other goblins, but they drop the electrolanterns more frequently, as well as mageweave. World drop rate is also a bit better, and I've gotten an epic of three off of them.
Another good spot in the ~40 level range is the Wastewander Bandits in Tanaris. They drop *alot* of mageweave, 1-3s, and alot of Scorpid patterns. I vendor them, as there isn't a high demand on my server, but you may have luck on the AH. They have *Very* low HP and def. They're also pretty good grinding mobs.
They're along the west wall from Gadgetzan to Steamwheedle in some ruins. East of there are some more of the same level, and further than that, higher level ones.
Through a cave near the ones to the east there are some pirates, which have the same rules as the Wastewander guys I was describing. They're about level 43-45.
Grinding for money rules of thumb
There are mobs like this spread throughout the game at all levels. I can't remember all of the specifics before 35, and I haven't gotten to 50+, so you'll have to find them for yourself.
However, there are some general rules you should go by when you see mobs:
If they die easy, they're worth grinding.
If they drop money, they're worth grinding.
If they have good stackable vendor fodder, they're worth grinding.
If they have good world drops, they're worth grinding.
If they're hard to kill, but follow the other rules : Don't waste your time. I've seen so many level 38s or so trying to do the higher level gobs in STV getting killed over and over again.
Factor the risk to reward ratio. I hate to be so general, but without experience at all places, it's all I can be. If you have any good spots, list them in your replies.
I'm hoping crafting tradeskills will be profittable in the future, but at current, they don't make enough money to be worth writting about. The materials used sell for much more than the finished project.
User Contributions Section
There are some places in the game where you can just skin corpses over and over without ever having to kill anything yourself. One of the best places for this on the Alliance side is in Elwynn Forest, the starter zone for Humans. All three of the farms in this zone are literally crawling with boars, and most people who go to the farms for quests will butcher a few pigs on their way through. As a result, there's almost always boar corpses on the ground, abandoned and waiting to be skinned by some enterprising young Alliance player. Your mileage may vary, depending on your server population.
In regards to the above:
Warchief SeomanP wrote:
Barrens and Mulgore. I've found alot of corpses just laying around waiting to be skinned.
I have a feeling this is true in any starting zone.
Nonlinear Esquire wrote:
I found some decent tin and sometimes a silver, sometimes, vein under the water in the barren oasis areas and by the thorns that the quillboar camp out at, most notably the quillboars near the south. Usually one tin and one or two copper. There is a mod out there that will remember all of your mining spots and pop them on the map, pushing them to the the edge of the map if they are out of range.
The Honorable lhuffman wrote:
I have a little tip for decent money making in the late 20s early 30s for horde members...though Alliance can do it too.
I was at Tarren Mill and I picked up all of my quests. One was to kill the grey bears for their tongues, another to kill the cats around there for a claw. I am a skinner and I also had just trained a new pet. These quests were just what I needed.
While killing these guys, I noticed that their drops were selling really good compared to what I had been getting previously. I would run out and kill until my inventory was full. I got good skins and good drops plus a few of each quest item. I found I was actually happy when I filled up, because I was selling and getting good money after selling. And you can kill tons of these within a minute or two travel time of Tarren Mill, so selling was easy to do.
The bears dropped paws, rotting carcasses, big bear meat and gall bladders. The gall bladders were the best, but they all stacked and sold well compared to all previous zones I had been hunting in. Again, I cannot stress the amount of leather I got.
As I completed the quests, I was handed quests to kill humans and others in outlying areas...but travelling to and from took me through large numbers of these bears and cats (the spiders were ok, but the bears were the best for drops and the cats and bears both provided good skins). I would run to the quest location, complete the quest and then on the way back, kill and skin bears until my slots were full. Go in and sell, turn in quests, get new ones, rinse and repeat.
Now, mind you, this really was not like grinding. I was doing this mingled with quests. I would even leave the area when it got old, do another quest then fly back in and resume. And the money is not extraordinary...just very good compared to what I had been getting. Allowed me to get plenty of cash to cover ability purchases, and have a good buffer to know I was not butt-ass poor. hehe.
Eruntalon the Silent wrote:
For skinners on the Alliance side in the mid 20s or higher a prime area to go to is The Wetlands. Go to the Excavation Site. There are a number of quests here that require people to kill multiple Raptors. A very easy place to just walk around and skin everything in site. Due to the level of some of the Raptors, it is possible to get Heavy Leather there as well. It is also a very small area, so there's not a lot of running around required.
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