Cataclysm Preparation Part I: Existing Characters

Some of this has got to go!

Today is the first half of things to consider as Cataclysm approaches.  Tomorrow we’ll look at planning for new toons, but for now it’s the ones you already have.

1. Clean up your bank(s).
Take it from me, at least one of your toons has items in their bank that make you wonder why they’re even there.  In the case of my 66 Hunter, it was a level one cooking recipe.  He doesn’t even cook.  Sure, that’s a drastic example, but you are bound to find things that have gathered too much dust or simply shouldn’t be there in the first place.  Now is a good time to sell those items, either on the Auction House or simply a vendor.  You’re going to want to check out the new goods come the expansion so a little housekeeping now means less or none later.

2. Don’t respec.
It’s only a matter of time before the next big patch before Cataclysm hits.  With it will be all the new talents and talent tree systems.  It could come next week for all we know.  Even if it doesn’t, it is an eventuality and that also means your talents are going to be reset when that time does come.  So why pay for it now?  This is especially true for Hunters who are really seeing changes coming down the pipe.

3. Stop checking your gearscore.
Unless you really, really, really, really, really, really want to down Arthas before Catacylsm hits, the gear your toon has is a moot point. Just as in its predecessors, this expansion’s greens are going to outweigh some purples. If you’re going to do anything with Emblems, I’d actually suggest heirlooms or waiting to see how many Justice Points you get when they’re converted.

4. Heirlooms
This is a tough one. Depending who you talk to, you should get them now. Others say wait. Me? I say get them now if you’ve got the emblems. Again, you may end up with less value in doing it now…but isn’t that better than ending up with less after?

5.  Server Transfers
Some people like Feats of Strength and more importantly “server firsts.” If that matters to you, I’d suggest transferring to a low-population one to increase your chances. From a different approach, if you happen to be on a server where queue times exist just think how much worse they’re going to be when the expansion hits. Amidst all of the chaos you can be assured character transfers won’t be as high of a priority for Blizzard at that time.

6. Achievements
I mentioned a couple yesterday, but there are plenty more that will no longer be viable come Cataclysm. Scholomance, for example, is going to become a level 35-40 instance. Unarmed skill points are being removed so the Knuckle Sandwich achievement will be gone too. If this is an aspect of the game that’s important to you, get cracking.

7. That Money, Money…Yeah, Yeah.
If there’s one thing you really should do before December hits, it’s build a little gold coffer for yourself. Sure most people have some set aside, but how much? Personally, I’d recommend 500g for each character you want to be able to fly in Azeroth.  It’s being hyped through the roof, but you can bet it won’t be free.  Do I think it will be that much?  Not likely.  But I’d rather have more than enough, than be short.

8. Evaluate Your Professions.
This one’s pretty simple. If you’re over 400 in a skill, I would suggest maxing it out. For one, people will be dumping supplies (which you should not be doing when you’re cleaning your bank up) and that means the cost will be lower. Add in the mats won’t be farmed as much come Cataclysm and it’s just more cost and time efficient to do now. If you’re below 400, I would simply wait. Profession leveling is going to be made easier in Cataclysm because you can get multiple points from making the harder recipes. Thus less mats and time needed.

9. What Do You Plan To Do When Cataclysm Hits?
A little planning for your character is important, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this in the first place. But really think about it. Are you going to quest? Fly around? Personally my miner is going to farm the new mats like crazy and profit off the people who have to have the new recipes and gear immediately. I might even keep some for my Jewelcrafting, but that’s the secondary plan. Sure, it sounds trivial, but everyone tries to get the most out of things that they can and in the early days that’s what you’ll want to do. So thinking about that now helps.

10. How Will Your Character React?
This is one for the RP players. The world, and the people you know in it, are all about to change. Where will you be when it happens? How will you react. This doesn’t even begin to discuss changes that are coming in the factions and races. A good RP person will have some ideas but it’s easier to play out when you’ve rehearsed the part a bit.

There you have it.  Ten things to think about for your existing characters as Cataclysm sits on the morning horizon.  None of these are must do ideas.  They are merely things to consider between now and then.  You might like them all, or you might only think one is worth your time, but remember hindsight is 20/20.

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