I said I would be done today and I'm done.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am a (proud?) owner of 10 characters, each of a different class, all at level 85. There will be no more leveling for me until the next expansion.
There really isn't much to say about the process. I was extremely close yesterday and it only took a bit over an hour to get over the last part today. Instead, I thought I could write a few words about each of them.
Larthas, Human Paladin; December 2010
Larthas was the first one I rolled and has remained my main since. I usually prefer mages in roleplaying games, but the idea of a holy warrior with a higher purpose was attractive for me, in spite of me not being at all religious in real life. It simply seemed like the ultimate hero and protector. I bought the game back in December or November of 2008. At first, my plan was to just get Vanilla and the Burning Crusade, thinking there's plenty of content there and that I wouldn't want or need Wrath of the Lich King yet. Of course, after I actually experienced the game and realized how big the endgame actually is, I quickly folded and bought it a few days after reaching level 70. Leveling a paladin wasn't very fun in those times with 2 minute seals and very little attacks at low levels. It was sturdy, though, so I could easily solo much of the group content. I was also a clicker back then and a complete newbie. I was willing to learn, though, so I did. As for professions, I started with mining and blacksmithing because it made sense for a plate class, but switched mining for enchanting a couple of months after hitting 80 and realizing I loathe farming.
Hastral, Gnome Warlock; July 2011
After a while of endgame, my second char to roll was Hastral, my warlock. I started out as demonology, but around the 50s, I switched to Affliction and never looked back. The idea of just dotting up mob after mob and letting them die while switching to another one was one and worked great. It took me a while to level this one, but not nearly as long as my first one. This character first became my herbalist and transmute master, but is now my elixir master. Even though he was the second character to reach 80 back in Wrath, he was the fourth one to reach 85 and was part of my August push, when I got a total of 5 characters to 85.
Auriaya, Draenei Death Knight; July 2011
Around the time of my warlock, I also made my mage, but he wasn't the third to cap. He was supposed to be a character I was gonna level with a friend, but he gave up fast, so this poor gnome was left alone for al long time. I tried leveling him as frost, but I didn't like it very much, so I stopped for a while and decided to roll a death knight. The DK was the first character to abandon my naming convention of making every name an anagram of my first char's name - Larthas. The reason for this was a bit silly, now that I look at it. I read somewhere that people prefer to buy stuff from girls. Since this was supposed to be my bank alt, I decided to make her a female draenei and name her Auriaya. Of course, I abandoned the bank alt concept very soon after that, since it involved to much relogging and mailing back and fort and instead each of my characters is responsible for their own crafting and selling now. In any case, the initial plan was also to keep the DK at 65, just to max a profession, but I ended up leveling to 80 anyway. Auriaya was third to 80 as well as third to 85, and also the first one from the August push.
Lashtar, Draenei Shaman; August 2011
After that, I decided to try a shaman with herbalism and inscription, because everyone was screaming how good of a money maker inscription is. I wen't back to my naming convention and named him Lashtar. He was capped pretty fast and it was a draenei again, because I wanted to see the starting zone, which was skipped on the death knight. According to the guides back, the fastest and easiest way to level was with enhancement, but I stopped with that in the twenties, I believe, and opted for a combination of enhancement and elemental instead. When I got to the higher levels, I completely switched to elemental and never looked back. I also did some dungeon healing on this one with the secondary spec. This character ended up dropping herbalism and replacing it with transmute mastery, since I already had a gatherer. Lasthar was the fourth to 80, but the sixth to 85.
Salthra, Night Elf Rogue; August 2011
Soon enough, it was time for my rogue. Again, due to the naming convention, he was named Salthra (I was running out of ideas here). It wasn't the funnest character to level, but I got him to 80 anyway. I started and and stayed combat during all of that. The main reason I made him was my plan to get the insane title, which is on hold for months now. You need a rogue for that and I prefer to have my own instead of asking someone else. After Cataclysm arrived, this one got to 85 pretty fast to, and I found it a bit more fun with recuperation. He was my skinner and leatherworker. He isn't making a lot of money right now, but it's steady and very low maintenance. This was the last character I got to 80 in wrath and the fifth character to 85.
Sahtral, Gnome Mage; July 2011
Once Cataclysm was out and I got a bit sated with endgame (but only a bit), I got back to my mage and pushed him to the cap. He was also part of my naming convention with Sahtral as his name. At first, he was a skinner/tailor. I didn't really need skinning, but by that time, I already had enchanting on my paladin, so I didn't need that either. I switched to arcane and went for a dozen or so levels with an all-instant-cast array of spells. I'm not sure if it was the fastest way, but it was fast enough, and the ability to run and cast was pretty fun and new for me. Nearing Outland, I switched to complete arcane and never looked back. By the end of vanilla, I was one- or two-shoting everything and this speed didn't greatly drop in Outland or Northrend. Once Cataclysm was there, I dropped enchanting on my paladin to take back mining. The reason for this was two-fold. First of all, I had trouble raising any professions to the new cap, so I needed a source of materials. Secondly, two crafting professions being used to earn gold was taking up to much room in my bags and, since I had enough alts anyway, I decided to keep one big money maker per character. While this one was stuck at low level for a long time, I leveled him from there straight to 85. This was the first alt of Cataclysm to get to the cap and probably one of my fastest characters to level. He is currently at a bit over 4 days played and that's including plenty of PVP and dungeon runs for gear at 85.
Dolgar, Dwarf Hunter; August 2011
It was around this point that I decided on my goal to get all characters to 85 and I started leveling faster. Next one was Dolgar, my hunter. I stopped using my naming convention completely from this point on and used an online dwarven name generator instead. At first, he started as a beastmaster. Then he switched to marksmanship around 40 and I loved the high powered aimed shots which would almost one shot everything. I pretty much stayed marksmanship up to 85, but I kept my beast mastery off spec for soloing group content. Once I hit 85, my plan was to do PVP with my brother in law on this one, but since he was a hunter to, it didn't work out and I went back to my paladin. He is also my engineer, but isn't making money at the moment. I might revisit that in the future.
Aiken, Human Warrior; Aquinia, Human Priest; Beaufort, Worgen Druid; October 2011
After that, I made the warrior, druid and priest. I was pretty much leveling them together, switching to the one that had the biggest rested bonus. This sped things up a bit, but it also made the experience duller, so I wouldn't recommend it. If you have alts sitting on a rested bonus, just do a quick dungeon instead, or at least try and make their levels a bit further apart. Out of these three, the warrior was the most fun and the druid was probably the least, but they all weren't to far apart. The warrior did stand out greatly at lower levels with the priest lagging behind the druid until he overthrew him starting in Cataclysm zones.
Well, that's that. My one major goal is complete. There will be relaxed gameplay in the future, and I will be spending less time in the game, playing more casually. This should affect the number of posts though, only the type of content.