Hailing from 2004, World of Warcraft Classic pioneered many staple MMO features the genre still holds close to its chest today. It’s a game buried far in the idea of grinding, and it takes a long time to reach the max level. Any decision you make can either cost you dozens of hours of playtime or a heap of in-game money that isn’t easy to come by.
Switching classes means creating a new character and starting from scratch, so it’s important you find a class you enjoy playing before you put too much time into it. This WoW Classic guide should help you find a class that suits your playstyle and offer some helpful tips that can greatly reduce the time you spend leveling up.
Choosing your class in WoW Classic
You can’t just swap your sword for a wand and expect to pick up where you left off in World of Warcraft Classic. Every decision matters; from the class you pick from the start to the individual talent points you pick up along the way. Most classes can tackle solo and group content just fine, but some excel at one more than the other.
Given the costs of refunding talents goes up with each re-roll, you’re going to want a pick what’s best for your overall trip to 60 first and foremost. Below, we’ll walk you through each class, their preferred roles, and how to spec them for the easiest leveling experience.
My personal favorite of the bunch, Warrior is your pretty standard melee DPS for the most part. They can use basically any melee weapon in the game, but the Whirlwind Axe obtained from a level 30 quest can carry them all the way to 60. It lacks and real self-sustain, but the higher defense offered by plate armor and high damage output should reduce downtime – or time spent healing up between fights.
Of its three main specs, Arms is the go-to pick for solo leveling. Fury can work but relies on a bit more RNG skill procs. Protection is a slower – but safer – bet for newcomers who tend to bite off more than they could otherwise chew, but should be considered if you plan to group up and run dungeons, as you’ll be a great tank.
Probably the most versatile of the lot, Druids can fill any role on a whim thanks to their ability to shapeshift into numerous different creatures. Druids are great for solo play, but the stance dancing required to really make them shine is something only advanced or returning veterans are likely to pull off. They rely on a trusty staff with the right stats.
The idea here is to start off by casting a few spells before hopping into Feral for fast melee damage, leaving mana to regen in the background. Then you swap back out to heal between pulls and repeat the process. Having access to Bear form makes them viable tanks when needed, too. They even gain access to Travel form, vastly speeding up questing.
Probably the king and queens of solo play, Hunters send their pets to tank single mobs while burning them down with ranged skills with bows and guns. They’re easy enough for beginners to pick up and play, with Feign Death always available to get you out of a sticky situation. Advanced players can make use of strict weapon skill timings and “melee weaving” to maximize DPS and take on multiple targets. Beast Mastery spec is best for that. They even get Aspect of the Cheetah to run real fast!
Another good option for players looking to solo thanks to the addition of a pet, but a fantastic duo option thanks to low downtime and reliance on damage over time. One of the biggest boons for Warlocks is having access to a free mount, saving heaps of gold and giving you much more freedom to spend on decent gear early on. They use wands as weapons for mana-free attacks.
Spec into a mix of Affliction and Demonology and use the Voidwalker pet to tank mobs when solo. If grouping with a tankier ally, swap the Voidwalker for the Imp or Succubus for higher damage.
This is your slow but safe solo leveling choice. Paladins have high defense due to plate armor and can heal themselves in a pinch. To offset this survivability, they suffer from slow attacks that can only really be supplemented with occasional abilities. They like to use two-handed maces for the most part, but this is debatable.
Paladins are great in groups, however, thanks to their numerous shields, buffs, and heals. They get a free mount, too. Retribution spec is usually the way to go.
Rouges aren’t exactly known for their high defense. They specialize in high burst damage, meaning they avoid damage by killing fast. Their stealth ability allows them to single out targets more easily, but they’re pretty useless when it comes to area damage in groups. Though you’d think Rouges would love daggers, they’re actually better with swords. Spec into Eviscerate for the highest damage.
Priests are fine solo options for magic fans looking for a less stressful experience over the Mage class. They’re like a mixture of Warlock and Mage in a sense; high survivability due to heals, both DoTs and regular spells, buffs to toss out to allies. Like the Paladin, their buffs and heals ensure Priests are often sought after for group play. Shadow spec is the go-to for solo play, whereas a focus in healing will probably go a long way in groups. Like the Warlock, Priests use wands for extra damage.
A very popular PvP choice, Mages excel in raw damage from afar. Their reliance on Frost spec spells help keep targets slowed or frozen in place for easy killing, making the spec well suited for both PvE and PvP. Powerful AOE spells make them great assets in grind groups, and their ability to conjure up consumables can save a ton of money in the long run. Their teleport and portal skills can save on travel time and are even commonly sold services in city hubs. They also use wands to finish off targets.
A hybrid class similar to Druid, Shamans can opt for heavy magic damage in Elemental spec, imbue their weapons in the Enchantment spec for respectable melee damage, or spec into Restoration for heals. Thanks in part to their powerful group buffs, Shamans are very valuable assets in “melee cleaves” dungeon parties.
Windfury Totem enchants ally weapons to potentially hit a second time, whereas Strength of Earth Totem gives a much-appreciated Strength bonus to everyone around it. This versatility leads to plenty of options when it comes to weapons types, but you’ll commonly see them with one-handed maces and shields.
Best Solo Class
Though no class will have an outright nightmarish time questing to 60, the hands-down victor of solo content has to be Hunter. If you’re up for a bit of a challenge with weaving, Hunters can take on multiple targets at once. Pets keep them out of danger, they can adapt quickly to any sudden PvP combat, and can even disengage losing battles with Feign Death. Their increased running speed can also greatly benefit the overall leveling experience – something Warlocks can’t rival even with a free mount. Druids are a bit more involved.
Best Group/Hybrid Class
This really depends on which role you prefer to fill: tank, healer, or DPS. If you’re going to be doing a mix of solo and group play and don’t mind filling any available roll, Shaman might be the better option. They can solo well, heal, DPS or event tank decently if needed, and their party buffs will make a big difference to overall DPS.
Choosing A Profession
Every profession has its uses, and any character can pick up two of these main gathering and crafting classes. They make equipment for select classes. But if you don’t see yourself stopping to level up professions to craft yourself gear while you level, consider picking up a profession purely for the money-making aspects of selling gear to other players.
Tank or DPS classes can do just fine with both crafting and gathering professions, but if you’re planning to spec into healer for dungeons and raids at max level, consider sticking to double crafting classes, as you may struggle to protect yourself if you go gathering materials out in the wild. Engineering is often the unsung hero with many helpful tools and gadgets to help solo players survive against powerful opponents or otherwise offer a bandaid fix to the shortcomings of specific classes.
Knowing which class to play from the get-go will go a long way in ensuring the WoW Classic leveling process isn’t too much of a slog. We all tend to rush to an MMO level cap under the assumption that the best is yet to come. And while that may be true, there’s a lot of fun experiences, wacky chat channels, and wonderful sights and sounds to take in along the way. You won’t have fun if you choose a class that doesn’t suit you, but you’ll have a great time if you’re corpse-dragging your way to the end.