Disposable Heroes: How To Make Reusable Level 10 PvP Toons

It has never been easier to have a blast with low level PvP in Warcraft than it is right now. Gone are the days where getting a character ready for WSG meant hours of grinding, farming, and doing impossible things just to compete with the level 19 twinks.

Not only is it easier to prepare a character for the fast paced, high burst world of level 10 Warsong Gulch, you can do so without committing to a character. You can literally try out characters and reuse all their gear if you decide you don’t like them. Not enjoying the Rogue’s playstyle? Delete them. Finding the Warlock isn’t your thing? Delete. Discover you should have been playing Priest all this time? Level them up, transfer their starter gear from a Mage. Worried about learning PvP at level 85? Give it a try at level 10, instead, and work on understanding how it all works – in a totally OP character.

Not every character has to be a digital representation of ourselves, a testament to our accomplishments in game. Sometimes we want a disposable hero, someone who can pwn faces for a while and then be deleted without regret when they aren’t any fun anymore.

Two significant changes happened to make this possible.

  • The battleground brackets were split in two, separating the level 10-14 players from the level 15-19s. This means the gear disparity is lower between the top and bottom of the bracket, while combat ratings actually favor the low end of the level range (you get more bang for your buck at level 10 than 14.)
  • More heirloom items have become available, making it easier to outfit a character with almost every slot with a blue-quality item at level 10 – when no corresponding blue items actually exist.

The same heirloom gear sets you are getting to level your alts can be repurposed into gear for low level PvP. Combine those heirlooms with Hand-Me-Downs – white, non-binding items usable by level 1s and given the best enchants you can get – and you can build a character who provides a great escape from the drudgery of the endgame.

Let’s look at how you do this.

A little Resilience goes a long way at level 10. (And yes, that's 307 AP, 50% Crit.)

RECIPE FOR A DISPOSABLE HERO

You’ll need:

  • Appropriate heirlooms for your class. That means: chest, shoulders, weapon(s), trinkets (PvP + haste, Int for casters), cloak, helm. If you can’t get heirlooms, hand-me-downs can be subbed in.
  • Enchanted level 1 white gear for the following slots: wrists, gloves, boots.
  • There aren’t really any good pant enchants, so pick up a pair of crafted green pants at level 10.
  • Useful rings are cheap and available at level 10 for casters and level 12 for everyone else. Optional.
  • You can wear a white belt and necklace if you want to. Optional.
  • 4 Traveler’s Backpacks. They’re the size of Netherweave bags, but they don’t bind on pickup.
  • A stack or three of Rumsey Rum Black Label, for +15 stamina. Drink up!

The pants and rings are the only pieces you can’t reuse from this setup, but considering their low cost, they’re easy enough to throw away.

You can learn professions if you want, especially if you think you might level this character eventually. Engineering can also give you helms if your guild isn’t level 20 yet. But they’re not needed. And if you have a surplus of cloth, you can level your First Aid to 225 and use Heavy Runecloth bandages. But again, that’s optional.

You’ll notice that this gear list really corresponds to how you’d outfit any alt of a given class, if you’re starting off and want to breeze through the first 25 levels or so. And what’s surprising is how little gear is really required!

Let’s break down the gear into class/role type.

Cloth-wearing casters (Mages, Priests, Warlocks) should go for:

Nearly every other caster class can make use of these items, so you’ve pretty much covered every Intellect-based spec here. (Holy pallys are an exception for the staves.) Wand users can pick up a quest reward for additional stats (but don’t use the wand, you don’t need it.)

Agility classes (Rogue, Druid, Shaman, Hunter) should try:

You can, of course, get the corresponding mail heirlooms for Shaman and Hunter, but they’re really not necessary. The additional armor is fine, but is hardly necessary. If you have them, great, use them! If you don’t, shoot for the leather pieces first. They’re more globally useful.

You have a lot of choices for weapons at this level, and while there are some pros and cons for each class and spec, you are really after the enchants, not the weapons themselves. If you can dual wield, do so and get +30 Agility (and +60 Attack Power) from the enchants. If you can’t, the Grand Staff of Jordan is an excellent choice even if you gain no benefit from spellpower. It has Hit, high Stamina and Resilience to help with survivability in PvP, the white DPS is equivalent to other 2H heirloom weapons, and it’s better than a 1H weapon with the +15 Agility enchant! If you can use spells, it’s an additional bonus for when you have to pull off a clutch heal or nuke. It’s more flexible than the Repurposed Lava Dredger; which can only be used by Druids and Shaman out of these classes, and lacks the versatility of the GSJ.

Yes. I’m telling you that the Grand Staff of Jordan is a hunter weapon.

Strength-based classes (Warriors, Paladins) should go for:

Holy pallys are odd ducks. You can do all sorts of crazy things with their weapons, like taking a Repurposed Lava Dredger (which has Haste) and adding an Iron Counterweight (which has an insane +20 Haste) and grab the Haste glove enchants (+10 Haste) to make really fast Holy Light casts. Or you could rock the Reforged Truesilver Champion with either a caster enchant or Crusader. But overall, you’ll find that the Devout Aurastone Hammer with any of the caster enchants (+22 Intellect, +29/+30 Spellpower) will see a lot of use if you play healers. Priests, Druids, Shamans, and Paladins can all use this mace, and while Shammys and Pallys will find it more useful at low levels (it can be paired with a level 1 enchanted shield), Priests and Druids will get by, even with their limited offhand selections at low levels.

Level 10 Mage with 1500 HKs, an Alliance Battle Standard and Knight's Colors? Sure!

THE FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH

You can approach disposable heroes in two ways:

  • I’m going to keep them level 10 as long as I can, if they level, meh
  • I’ll level as I go, and reroll when I hit 15

Either way works.

The first way is pretty easy to accomplish – XP is only gained in WSG when your team captures a flag. So don’t be there when this happens. Make a macro with a single line:

/afk

and keep tabs on your FC at all times. AFK out before the flag caps, wait 15 minutes (go do dailies or something), and return to let off some more steam later.

This method lets you stay with someone for a long, long time. I got over 1000 HKs on my level 10 mage without really trying, just by AFKing out.

But – to be quite honest – afking out can be kinda boring.

I mean, you never get to win, to really dominate the battleground, to make it so that the other team just hates you. They hate you for about 3 minutes and then you’re gone. And that’s not that fun.

So the other option is just to level up normally through BG experience, and when you hit 15 (or 19, or 25, or whatever), just delete the character and reroll.

You heard me. Delete the toon and start over again at level 10. I wager you can get to level 10 in 45 minutes or less, just by killing everything in sight with your uber gear. Very little of it is soulbound – not even the bags! – so just delete and start over. Try a different race, a different class. Or do the exact same one if you were having fun.

These are disposable heroes, after all!

No commitment, casual PvP where you get to pwn face and blow off steam. If you don’t know how to PvP, this is a great way to start.

Plus – you’ll learn to love Warsong Gulch. No, really!

Give it a try.

40 Comments

Filed under Cynwise's Battlefield Manual, Green Tinted Goggles

40 responses to “Disposable Heroes: How To Make Reusable Level 10 PvP Toons

  1. Valuable advice, and when I get back into WOW I might try it out. But one question: I’d understood that an NPC could now turn off XP gains for a character. Wouldn’t that be an easier method than AFKing out just before a flag capture? Or does it not work on characters as low as level 10?

    • You can lock XP at level 1 (though you might ding on exploration on the way, not as a Human, but possibly as a spacegoat), so it’s not a question of level limits.

      No, it’s a question of queue times and opponents. There is a level 10-14 bracket, but it is not heavily populated, so the queue times are really long. When you DO get there, you’ll be facing people who are in better gear than you’re in with this guide, and the matches are much slower and a different kind of fun. Leaving XP on means that you’re with everyone, geared and ungeared, in the leveling brackets. There are a lot of people in BoAs in the 10-14 bracket, and they do well. The goal is to be even better than they are with your enchants (and your skill, naturally.)

      AFKing out is only really fun for a little bit, as you watch your HK count rise, and rise, and rise. You also can get a nice stash of honor to get a Battle Standard, and maybe even a mount (if you are planning to go to 20.) But it gets old pretty quickly. I like winning too much.

      • Ahh. So the answer is “there are different queues for XP-locked and not-locked characters”. :) That was the point I’d missed.

      • Oh, derp, yes! I’m sorry, that was the unspoken assumption. I need to remember to not use jargon, and not assume everyone knows twink brackets are now split. :-)

  2. I’ve never even seen anything like this before, and I really need to go and do it. Now.
    Thanks for the epic idea + guide. Brb…

    • That’s one of the reasons I posted it here, instead of on my twink blog. This is HUGE amounts of fun, and doesn’t take that much time if you’ve already got some heirlooms.

      (Obviously, you can swap out gear as necessary.)

      Enjoy!

  3. Sharing our favorite pass time, Cyn? What took you so long? :P

    Another thing worth noting here is that if you reroll the with same name you’ll find that all of your character-specific macros as well as most of your game settings will remain the same as they’re saved per account and per character name.

    It’s not a huge deal, but as someone who uses macros for almost every attack/ability that I have, it saves me a lot of time writing and rewriting macros as I delete and reroll these disposable twinks.

    If anyone’s looking for advice on what kind of disposable hero to roll:
    Hunters, Rogues, and Mages are the most “OP” when it comes to kill power. Holy Paladins and Disc Priests are the most powerful disposable healers.

    Cyn and I did a lot of runs where we used /afk before the flags were capped, but it did get really boring really fast. I definitely prefer just going through the matches until I hit 15 and then rerolling.

    • I was just thinking that I needed to consolidate onto a single name, so that I didn’t have to set up my UI differently every time. I need to do that. Woah, I need to do that. Yes….

      And as to what took so long? Demons, and So. Many. Wowhead. Links. :-)

      /afking was neat for racking up kills, but it really wasn’t that much fun. Rerolling is better.

  4. I have recently starting leveling a hunter, priest, warlock and enhancement shaman. I can honestly say that lower level BGs are so much fun. The BOA and a few extras make it doable to play against other levels within my BG. I find it a great way to begin sharpening my healing skillz into dps skillz in battle.

    • There is no better way to learn good healing on the fly that doing so in PvP.

    • I know that lowbie PvP is crazy high burst, but that’s part of why I like it. It actually hones skills like positioning, seizing the initiative, etc.. With the right classes (hunters, cough cough) you can do well in quest greens.

      Hot diggity, I love lowbie PvP. :-)

  5. Cyn,
    Couple of things.
    1: What if I don’t have BOA gear? I mean, I just came back to WoW after a very long hiatus and am still leveling my primary toon so I cna start earning BOA gear.

    2: I love everything about this post, great guide…ACCEPT the afk thing. That annoys me when I’m on a toon that I am trying to win a fight with.

    3: I thought we gained xp for kills as well, was I mistaken? I know you only gain rep with a flag cap. Also, in 4.1 the guild xp is supposed to come into effect both for kills and wins on the BG’s.

    Other than that, great and interesting post for the lowbies out there. Oh, I still have alot of success on my kitty druid without the BOA gear lol, just enchants on greens and pvp reward blues. the 10 bracket I had a blast, I was a cap master with mah kitty lol. got the achievement under 75 sec for a return cap as well. Got a little more tougher when I passed into the 15-19 bracket though.

    • 1) If you don’t have BoA gear, you can make some Hand-Me-Downs instead. Psynister has a great series on them on his site:

      http://psynister.wordpress.com/2010/11/18/hand-me-downs-a-poor-mans-heirlooms/

      The basic idea is to get level 1 gear, put great enchants on them, and go to town.

      2) I struggled with the /afk thing for a while. Then I realized I just wasn’t having any fun with it anymore, so I don’t even bother. I mean, it’s all cool to have a level 10 with thousands of HKs, Iron Man, Wrecking Ball, the whole nine yards – but eventually I just wanted to *win*.

      3) No XP for HKs. You do get it for accomplishing the goals of the BG, so that’s flag caps in WSG and resource collection in AB. And I, for one, can’t *wait* for the guild XP in BGs. I’m so far behind, even though I’m contributing to the HK achievement every day. :-(

      • Valid points and thanks for the clarifications. See, I ALWAYS go to your site when I am working on pvp stuff. I belong to a pve server and pve guild (all good friends and mostly social) but I enjoy and have learned a fair amount from your site. My kitty fruid has pretty weak farmed greens and a few blues along with some decent enchants. He actually is getting to the point where whether the game is won or lost, I walk away with 15-18 kills and 1-2 deaths. I apply alot of what you have posted to my early pvp game lol.

      • If we got experience for honor kills I don’t think I’d bother stepping for in another dungeon ever again. Or questing. Or..anything else. pvpvpvpvpvpvpvpvpvpvpvpvpvpvp

      • Friginne

        I have to add something on the /afk thing. I can see the reasoning behind doing it, and I can also see how it would get boring after a while; however, I’m looking at it from the point of every one else in that battleground and I HATE /afkers. When one person does it, it’s not too bad, but if you get 2 or 3 or 5 people all in the same mindset to drop the BG because they don’t want the XP, then the rest of us are left in a seriously disadvantaged battle, even if we just got a flag cap.

        The idea of using /afk to get out of getting XP and keeping a level 10 character with over 1k HKs is interesting and all, but I wouldn’t want to screw over the rest of the people in the BG by doing that. I like to win, too.

      • I don’t disagree. It’s one thing when you’re the FC, surrounded by your team in the FR, the enemy in complete disarray – your replacement will come right in to the group, you’ve established a lead – and another when your in the middle of a pitched battle trying to take down the EFC. It doesn’t feel good to /afk out of a fight where your team needs you.

        That’s one of several reasons why I just level and delete when they hit 15 or 20 now.

  6. Solanti

    And I thought I was alone in my insanity! I’ve been doing this a long time, think I’m on to my 7th character like this. My rule is to delete as soon as ding 20. It’s a good way to try different classes/specs and also see the revamped starter zones for all the different races.

    One of the best aspects for me was that such short-lived characters completely cured my addiction to achievements.

    • Hardly alone! And you’re right, this is a GREAT way to see the world, I think I may do this on my Horde server just for that reason!

      One of the best aspects for me was that such short-lived characters completely cured my addiction to achievements.

      Oh my, I can see this happening to me already. My hesitation over deleting my mage was based on two things – she had achievements I didn’t even have on my main, and her 165 Jewelcrafting.

      Fortunately, I came to my senses and hit that delete button.

      Thanks for the comment!

    • Rolling alts in general solved my achievement addiction before it ever started. Now I just have a handful of achievements that every toon MUST have, and anything else is just gravy.

      I think of all the various twinks we’ve done the 10’s have been the most fun with the least amount of…non-fun mixed in. I still have a strong love for 19’s, but true 19 twinking is a lot like raiding end game and finding out your tanks/healers are still wearing quest greens. When actual twinks are there it’s a great battle, but with heirlooms a lot of people pseudo-twink in the twink brackets which can make them suck.

  7. Bear

    It’s worth noting that, unless something’s changed lately, Worgen and Goblins are bad for this because they can’t actually queue for BGs at level 10. You need to get out of the starting zones and into the real world first.

    • Yeah, it’s impossible to do Worgen and Goblins at level 10. You’re 13-14 by the time you get out of the zone.

      It also takes longer to get them up to level 10 since you pretty much HAVE to do all the quests in the zone. You can’t just grind it out. :-(

  8. Illorze

    Must say, this is the best solution for twinking EVER! I was so sad when I found out that twinking would be literally impossible, but i never thought of just getting the gear (the idea with non binding whites is genious) and just delete my twink when he reached level 15!:D Plus, if you can get enough honor with the twink before he reaches that certain limit, you can actually buy the honor heirlooms with the twink. Awesome!

    • That’s a really interesting idea, buying heirlooms with a level 10 character! I wonder if there are any gotchas.

      We must try this out!

    • Lilrett

      Sorry, but as far as I know, when you delete whatever toon that bought the heirlooms then you lose those heirlooms. Which shouldn’t be right I know because they say “Bind to Account” or to battle.net account now. It doesn’t say anything about also being bound to whatever toon happened to buy the item.

      • Lilrett

        I have an update, actually I was wrong and you do not lose the boa item when you delete the toon that bought it, you just can’t delete him if you currently have the boa still on the toon you are trying to delete.
        Sorry for the confusion.

  9. Popcap

    Another good time to delete them is after you’ve bought your next piece of BoA gear. You’ll have to play the toon longer, but you can use your clothie’s honor points to buy something for your leather set, or vice versa.

  10. Vandy

    Do you really have to complete the worgen/goblin start zones before you can sign up to a BG? Other races can sign up to BGs from anywhere have they simply disabled that for the new races, or is someone being old school and going back to battlemasters?

    Warlock summon not work either?

    • You get an error message saying “You cannot queue for battlegrounds while the fate of Gilneas is undecided.” I’m fairly sure warlock summons don’t work, but haven’t personally tried. The BG queue message is confirmed, though.

      You can race change a level 10 to one of the new races, but it’s not worth the money.

  11. Time to give this a whirl myself! Thanks for the tips!

  12. Lilrett

    Hi guys, I was aware of lvl 10 twinking before I came here but I have to say this is a good guide. I am having a ton of fun (so blizzard will probably nerf it soon) doing the /afk thing with my 10 spriest. With the “rallying cry of the dragonslayer” buff my crit is up to almost 90% :D and I have around 176% haste with lifeblood buff.
    Also don’t forget the wisdom potion that gives plus 6 int and +3 scroll of stamina buffs are mostly cheap and good to have. I am not sure how you got your 10mage to 1400 health that is crazy :) I am doing good to be around 1000 without using stamina enchants on boots and bracer.
    What do you think about leveling a toon in pvp all the way into higher brackets? Is it too much work constantly getting new gear (for non-boa slots) +enchants?

    • Those are good points, thanks!

      Leveling a toon strictly via PvP tends to leave them poor and with some substandard gear. It’s fine if you can bankroll them with items from the AH, but until you get to level 60 or so it’s difficult. Certainly possible, though!

      • Lilrett

        Yeah I’m struggling with a 49 warrior, I just don’t think warriors are really that good until getting some abilities at higher levels.
        So mainly I am thinking about what lvl 10 I should make next. I am thinking about a hunter but it’s really gotta hurt not being able to heal oneself, I don’t know how many times I’ve already saved myself from dying on my 10 priest.

  13. Lilrett

    Thought I’d give an update. Still having fun with my 10 priest and I also went ahead and made a 10 hunter who is amazing even without the ability to heal. :D I also made a 10 druid but unfortunately druids can’t heal as good as priests and can’t dps as good as my hunter. :(

    • Barrett

      well, it probably shouldnt do as well because it doesnt have a role that it HAS to be. so it wouldnt heal as well as a priest or dps as well as a hunter (which would be REALLY hard no matter what class).

  14. Pingback: Celebrity Transmogrification Picks « Disciplinary Action

  15. Pingback: From rawr to VROOM, Khesed 2.0 « Zwingli's Weblog O' WoW

  16. Barrett

    Awesome! This saves me the problem of going “hmm… a twink would be cool…” *checks prices on ah and drop rates and…* And i finally go “wait a sec… this will cost me (insert gold amount here) gold?! Not gonna happen! And, in 5 lvls i will have to get different gear, making that 100g i spent completely redundant. Thanks a bunch! I will try this soon.

    P.S. Any suggestions on enchants?