We start off with something very important: attitude. WoW’s community has become increasingly antisocial over the years, moving away from social engagement and instead focusing on ease of access to content and linking you up with random players. Whilst not a bad thing, it takes away from the MMO part a little. With Classic, the sense of community and building bonds is given much more value and your reputation within your server is important.
While levelling you’ll do quests. Notably, you’ll kill rare mobs. Often, these mobs are in caves, castles or surrounded by other mobs — for this reason, grouping up with those nearby is key. Utilising /s for those near you or the local general chat (/1) will be key as you level in the world. Another notable interaction will be with buffs. If you happen to be playing a class that can buff others (Priest, Mage etc), you’ll often find that as you pass people on your travels an exchange of buffs will take place between you both, even buffing those without a buff to return will give you a wholesome sense that you’ve made someone's day (or next 30 minutes). That extra stamina you give that random Gnome player could save their life.
2. Regardless of how you choose to level, be that solo or grouped, questing or dungeon grinding, it’s worth changing it up from time-to-time. Some of the best levelling items in the game drop in dungeons. For example, a Warrior might want to do Scarlet Monastery Armory wing for Ravager, one of the most iconic weapons from level 37 onwards. On the flip side, some zone end quests have a number of notable rewards. Westfalls, for example, has a final quest (which sees you head to The Deadmines) which can reward healers with the Staff of Westfall which can easily serve you until level 34.
With questing being the main way to level, the game will from time-to-time push you into dungeons to complete long quest chains. As we previously mentioned, Westfalls does this by having The Deadmines act as a sort of end-zone boss. The quests even lead you to the next Alliance dungeon, Stockades, which is situated in the heart of Stormwind. Horde players have a similar experience with Wailing Caverns (Barrens) and Shadowfang Keep (Silverpine Forest).
3. As we mentioned with the first tip, grouping with others is key to your success in WoW Classic. From early boss mobs such as Hogger or class quests to kill waves of mobs, looking for help and helping others is an important part of Classic, never be afraid to ask for help, we’re all human (other races are available).
The two main ways to get help, especially with quests is to either look around you for people doing the quest or around the quest hub or to use the general (/1) or Looking for Group (/4) channels. General chat is probably the best bet due to it being restricted to the area you’re in but for bigger elites, LFG chat might be your best bet.
4. At first 100g sounds like nothing; ‘I can earn that easily' you might think. The reality is a little different as it always seems that for every 1g you earn the skills trainer will take it back every time you visit. Whilst you could just stop visiting them, you might find it hard to level. A key thing to do pre-mount is focussing on skills you need/use only. If you’re a Frost Mage make sure to rank up Frostbolt etc and leave Fireball till later. The same thing goes when learning new profession recipes/skills from trainers. Whilst making the latest gear from the Blacksmith sounds like a good move, you might be better off storing what you mine in the bank until later when you have some spare gold.
Questing is probably the best way to make sure you’re ready for your mount, though don’t be surprised if you can’t buy it until level 43 or so. By the time you reach level 30 and hit Stranglethorn Vale quest rewards and vendor value of said rewards ramps up fast, and you’ll find yourself going from 5–10g up to 50–60g fairly quick.
A nice early game money making tip is to pick up Skinning (make sure to buy a skinning knife) and skin all the beast you slay, then sell the leather/skins to a vendor for extra value on mob kills. Once you finally have enough gold head to a capital city and speak with a guard about mount trainer, then start saving the 1000g required for your level 60 mount.
Tip: Warlocks and Paladins will get their first mount for 1g as it comes in the form of a spell from their trainer and not a physical mount.
5. Lastly, enjoy the ride. Don’t be put off by people being 20 or 30 levels higher than you, just make sure that you’re having fun. Classic WoW is about the journey as much as the destination. Experiences you have in STV, Tanaris or Un’Goro will live with you for life and are shared with players throughout your server. Who knows, maybe in 15 years time when Classic 2.0 comes out you’ll be retelling those same stories.
Remember, this is your experience above all else. If you want to move to a small island off the coast of Barrens and retire as a fisherman or become the greatest herbalist Azeroth has ever seen, you can.