Update (August 23, 2016): The official raid release schedule has been posted by Blizzard! I've updated the article to reflect some of the changes, but overall the plan remains the same.
With Legion approaching, the sheer amount of things to prepare for can seem overwhelming. A quick Google search will show an endless number of guides on how to optimize anything. Rather than try to make a super guide, I thought I would share my plans for the early part of Legion, as well as share some of the useful guides I’ve found. I’ll personally be focused on being ready to raid as soon as possible.
Leveling to 110
- Watch for treasures and rares while in the world
- Check Order Hall Scouting Map for Artifact Power missions; start research on Order Hall Advancements at level 102
- Run daily random dungeons for the bonus Artifact Power reward
- Level up professions where possible and complete the professions quests
- Stay on top of the Order Hall Campaign quests
I play a Restoration Druid but I plan on leveling up as Balance. The changes Blizzard made to healer’s DPS has helped considerably, but killing things as a DPS spec is still faster (as it should be, no complaints here). This means I’ll be holding onto all of the artifact power items I receive so I can use them on my Restoration artifact instead of the Balance one. Remember that any artifact power item you use gets applied to your currently equipped artifact!
While out in the world, I’ll be keeping a close eye out for treasures and rares. These will commonly drop Artifact Power items, Order Hall Resources (referred to as Resources from here on), or gear. If you want a really easy time, I recommend the HandyNotes addon.
In addition to that, I’ll be checking my Order Hall Scouting Map (mission table) regularly for missions that reward Artifact Power. You could opt to do other missions, such as ones for Experience or Gold, but I recommend saving your Resources for when you reach level 110.
Also in the Order Hall, I’ll be keeping an eye on my Order Hall Advancement NPC it’s unlocked at level 102. Order Hall Advancements are like talents for your Order Hall and will give bonuses to various things. You can switch between these talents at any time, but they costs thousands of Resources, take days to complete, and you can only be working on one at a time. So it’s not something you’ll be doing often. I’ll be picking talents that increase mission success chance, reduce mission duration, and give a chance for followers to return with equipment. This sets me up to have high mission success chances in order to receive the bonus loot, which equates to more Artifact Power, Gold, or Experience.
In between questing, I’ll be running a random dungeon every day for the bonus reward. I’ve only seen it as Artifact Power so far, which is exactly what I want!
I’m an Herbalist and an Enchanter on my Druid, and will be leveling those professions as I go. I’ll be holding onto all disenchantable loot I get and picking any herbs I find while running around. I’ll also be keeping an eye on the profession quests and completing them as I go, but probably not going out of my way to complete them yet. As with every expansion, I will likely sell a lot of the early materials I gather while prices are insanely high on the auction house.
Finally, I’ll be staying on top of my Order Hall Campaign quests. You need to complete this questline to unlock the third relic slot in your artifact weapon as well as some of the Order Hall gear set pieces. The quests for the campaign appear under the “Class Campaign” heading in your quest log (with “Class” being the name of your class).
Focus on Order Hall Resources and Artifact Power
- Do World Quests that reward Resources or Artifact Power; do enough to complete Emissary Bonuses when they’re available
- Start Artifact Research Note jobs at the Order Hall Researcher NPC
- Work on finishing Order Advancement “talents” for the Order Hall
At max level, the fun begins! You unlock two very important features: World Quests and the Order Hall Researcher.
Immediately upon reaching 110 I’ll be looking at my World Quests. My goal will be to complete all of the World Quests that reward Resources or Artifact Power while also completing the Emissary Bonuses (shown at the bottom left of the map) before time runs out on them. World Quests are a lot more flexible than traditional daily quests. They rotate around during the day while the Emissary Bonuses remain active for several days at a time. This gives you more time to complete them, but you still won’t want to miss out on the Emissary Bonuses.
Soon after reaching 110, I’ll make another visit to my Order Hall to start my Artifact Research Note jobs at my Order Hall Researcher. Each Research Note you complete and use will permanently boost the amount of Artifact Power you gain from all sources. The reason I’ve been so obsessed with gaining Resources up to this point is because each Research Note takes 500 Resources and one day to be created. You’ll of course want to be making these daily until the cap on the bonus is reached (I couldn't find what the cap is, perhaps there isn't one).
Yet another thing I’ll be doing with my Resources is furthering my Order Advancement talents that I mentioned before. It’s my understanding that the Order Halls all have similar talents, just with different names, so my plan should be applicable to any class. As with before, I’ll be picking talents that increase mission success chance, reduce mission duration, and give a chance for followers to return with equipment.
It might go without saying, but I’ll still continue to complete missions at the Scouting Map, the daily random dungeon, and work on the Class Campaign. The only thing you’ll ever really finish on that list is the Class Campaign.
- Get to item level 820-830 from heroic dungeons to start mythic dungeons
- Clear each mythic dungeon every week
- Kill one World Boss each week for a chance at loot
- Work on reputations, primarily The Nightfallen
- Get to item level 840-850 before raids are released
With World Quests and my various Order Hall jobs out of the way, I’ll be focused on gearing up.
My minimum item level goal before raids are released is 840. I'll accomplish this through heroic dungeons, mythic dungeons, unlocking the order hall set, world bosses, and possibly some crafted or reputation gear. If I’m lucky, I’ll get a legendary item, too! The options for gearing up in Legion are staggering.
Heroic dungeons are pretty straightforward, just queue for them through the group finder tool as you always have! My goal is to get to item level 820-830, which will allow me to start mythic dungeons. You can also look at reputation vendors for item level 820 gear, but chances are you won’t have the reputation level required to buy them when you’re fresh at level 110.
Mythic dungeons are also pretty straightforward and work similar to how they do in Warlords of Draenor. You need a premade group of five players and must make your way to each dungeon manually. Once inside, you can simply start the dungeon. You’ll notice a pedestal called Font of Power, but you’ll only use it when mythic+ dungeons are released and you have a Keystone. Upon completing each dungeon, you’ll receive some loot starting at item level 840. Note: mythic+ dungeons do not open and mythic+ Keystones will not drop until the first raid is released. I’ll be focusing on running each regular mythic dungeon once per week until then. Once Keystones are available, they'll drop from each mythic dungeon upon completion.
With mythic dungeons completed, I’ll fill in any gaps in my gear with the Order Hall set. This set can be purchased from a vendor in your Order Hall and eventually upgraded to item level 840 once you are exalted with The Nightfallen faction.
I’ll also be killing a World Boss each week. There are several world bosses in Legion, but only five are available every week. From those five, you can only get loot from one (need to confirm this). They drop item level 850 loot which is the highest base item level available before raids (not counting legendary items).
To directly complement the other gear sources, I’ll be working on reputations. The big one I’ll be focusing on is The Nightfallen. They’re directly tied to upgrading the Order Hall sets to item level 840 and also have an item level 850 neck available at Revered. Other factions also offer other item level 850 rewards. I recommend looking at Wowhead's Reputation Overview to figure out which factions would benefit you the most. You mostly gain reputation with the factions by completing World Quests and finding items while out in the world.
As a last-ditch effort, I’ll consider crafting items. However, I expect crafted items to be very over-priced before raids are released, so they’re not something I’m putting a lot of stock into. There is no longer a limit on the number of crafted items you can equip, so it’s possible to craft all of your armor and make it to item level 850 that way. I recommend Wowhead's Crafting Overview to find out which sets can be crafted and how.
That’s about it! I have a few weeks to complete all of the above steps before raids are released. Once raids are out, I’ll start working on mythic+ dungeons for even better gear alongside raids. I’ll finish up any reputations I’m missing, but this will mostly be for vanity items. World Quests will continue to be important as well, serving as a source of Order Hall Resources and Artifact Power.
Useful Legion Resources
Below are most of the resources I used while figuring out my game plan.
An incredibly comprehensive spreadsheet for anyone who is hard-core into raid preparation for Legion.
A great video by SoulSoBreezy with brief information on early end-game strategies. This is probably the video you want to watch if you’re not super hard-core or just want a quick-look at max-level content. He’s also made an updated video with some leveling tips and more end-game preparation ideas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q2TDwlAewLk.
This video by Mmrrggll Gaming shows you how to optimize your Order Hall for making gold. Not entirely related to leveling or raid preparation, but it will teach you how and why to level up your Order Hall followers.