One of the fastest ways to reach the maximum level World of Warcraft: Dragon Flight (opens in new tab) is to stand in one place and click through menus. Crafting, it turns out, is one of the quickest ways to hit the game’s new level 70 limit.
Dragonflight is the first time crafting items has rewarded XP in WoW. For every new item you create, you get a good chunk. It’s even possible to craft a bunch of different items to reach three levels in just 10 minutes. WoW speed controllers, like regular speedrunners, found that the most efficient route to level 70 actually involves several minutes of staring at a crafting menu.
The first player to reach level 70 was Adelio (opens in new tab)a Korean player who previously managed to catch a boat to the new zone many people (opens in new tab) on the US and EU servers. With that lead, they stormed through the Dragon Isles quests with a full group to round up enemies. For WoW, this method is fairly standard: using knowledge from the beta, you stack XP buffs and efficiently link missions together. The only difference is that they took a break to craft some items so they can fill the downtime between quests and pulls. Adelio shot to level 70 in about three hours.
Gingi, an old world first, did the same thing, but much faster. He reached level 70 in about an hour and a half after getting past the server errors. Gingi had a similar strategy where he raced around the Dragon Isles with the new one dragon riding (opens in new tab) skills and other moves to bring groups of enemies together. You see in the Twitch archive (opens in new tab) that he only stops moving to cast spells or craft. The riveting finale is him somehow sewing together a Trailblazer’s Toughened Coif – a piece of clothing he’ll never wear – to earn the last bit of XP up to level 70.
WoW’s modern quest design is already made to be a quick process. It’s best to think of a new expansion’s series of quests as the intro or first act of a long storyline that will continue in future patches. But for speed levelers, the crafting XP bonus allows them to skip unnecessary things like walking or fighting at opportune times. It reminds me of WoW’s ultimate pacifist playerDoubleagent, who is currently at level 61 from picking flowers in the Pandaren starting zone.
WoW continues to add new ways to earn XP that allow you to enjoy activities outside of quests without falling behind. Side attractions like pet fights, island expeditions, and the latest expansion’s roguelike Torghast mode are still useful ways to level up. Maybe one day it will match Final Fantasy 14 and introduce full crafting classes with their own storylines and gear. The main changes in crafting and professions in Dragonflight it makes it seem like a very real possibility.