I am currently working full time on my Vanilla WoW leveling guides. Soon there will be a 1-60 speed leveling guide for Alliance, along with in-game guide versions available for my members area. As of right now, there is no members area, but if you would like to show support for my efforts into this project, you can simply donate to me via Patreon if you like (you will get some cool rewards in return). Or you can donate directly with PayPal if you like. All donations are highly appreciated and they will only motivate me more to continue making the best vanilla WoW leveling guides on the web.
The Horde 12-20 (Barrens + Stonetalon Mountains) guide has been rewritten and revamped. In addition, there has been numerous tweaks to the speedrun route to make things faster and easier to follow. Also, in case you haven't noticed I am now adding about 40% more info per step and redoing all the images. Unlike with my previous vanilla guides, I am now giving a brief explanation of where to go and what to do with each step along with any other helpful tips.
WoW Classic seeks to recreate the "vanilla WoW" experience—that is, WoW as it existed before a series of seven game-altering major expansion packs from 2007's The Burning Crusade to 2018's Battle for Azeroth. To achieve this, Blizzard has rebuilt the game based on archived data from back in 2005 and 2006 (patch 1.12 is the goalpost—the current game is on patch 8.1.5). The company has committed to meticulously presenting the experience exactly as it was back then—warts and all—with only a small number of unavoidable or critical changes.
Along with revealing the WoW Classic release date, Blizzard also listed plans for both a beta and stress test of the game. Players who opt-in for the testing on their account manager page and have an active subscription will be randomly selected for the beta starting May 15. Then the developer will have three stress tests where players can log in to play the game for a short period of time on the following dates:
Other methods have been discussed. For example, mods could be crippled. DBM didn't exist back then, and the other boss that did that I don't remember the name of, didn't do as much back then as DBM does now. If our goal is to recreate the experience as it was, then obviously not having DBM would be a reasonable way to accomplish that. DBM simply existing, makes the game today easier than it was. So disallow it. Again, this is completely consistent with the spirit of vanilla. Remember one-button-decursing? That was nerfed. They crippled the capabilities of the modding API to disallow that because it made the game too easy. So what if they cripple it a little bit more to once again make the game less easy?
It was the experience of the game that brought pleasure and joy, and that's what a lot of us want again. Not the numbers. When I play Classic I want to go through the deadmines with people I like and overcome a challenge together and see myself become stronger as a result. I don't want to play Classic so I can say "booyah! That number is exactly the same as it was 13 years ago!"
Most people who have spent years playing massively multiplayer online games will tell you that there's something special about the first one you played, too—and WoW was the first for many people. You can become so swept up in the uniqueness of your first experience that you overlook many flaws. It's likely many look at WoW Classic with rose-colored glasses, just as many simply forgot which features were added when. And some of today's WoW players may be too young to have even played vanilla WoW as it once was.
Occasionally it's also been proposed to re-randomize all the gear. We didn't have best in slot lists back then. People weren't starting out as a fresh level 1 character with a complete list of which dungeons to run at 60 in order to gear as quickly and efficiently as possible. Now, all that data is available. If gear were re-randomized then all of those lists would become useless and thing would be close to how they were. Which is a more important part of the "vanilla experience?" the fact that item X from boss Y has exactly Z stats on it, or the voyage of discovery? Personally I think that voyage is way more important. Do you remember how many points of which stat on the ring or whatever that Darkmaster Gandling drops? I don't. Would it kill your experience if the BiS for every class were in a different dungeon so people had to actually play to figure it out rather than simply consult a spreadsheet? I don't think it would. For that matter, it probably wouldn't be a bad idea to handle it intelligently so that the better gear is in later dungeons. I remember there because some weird cases where level 40ish gear was better than anything that dropped in level 60 dungeons.
“To fill our pool of beta and stress test participants, we’ll be choosing dedicated players who meet select criteria from both the WoW Classic beta opt-in and the standard Warcraft beta opt-in. Participants will also need to have an active subscription or active game time on their Battle.net Account. While opting-in to the beta is the primary way to make sure you’re in the running to join the test it doesn’t guarantee an invitation to the closed beta test. We may also consider additional factors such as how long a player has been subscribed to the game so that we have the right mix of players to ensure great feedback toward making WoW Classic the very best experience for the community.”