Saturday, January 12, 2013

World of Warcraft Newbie Guide 18: Move Really Fast - The Methods of Travel

By this point, you're probably level 20, or are at least tired of running to get places. While you have access to flight paths (you can track these and find new ones by looking for green exclamation points on the map), the costs can add up and you can only quickly travel to specific locations, such as towns and outposts. In addition, while you may already know about the other methods of travel, such as zeppelins and ships (which I will also include in this article), none of this accounts for having to run anywhere.

Fortunately, from level 20 onwards, you get access to mounts. In this article, I will cover the riding skill and where to get your mounts. I will also list some other methods of travel (excluding flight paths) on the off chance someone doesn't know about them (since they're pretty easy to miss out on).

Learning To Ride

Riding is a secondary profession that requires training. In addition, you must also pay to learn additional passive effects that allow you to mount up in specific areas. Riding trainers are found in any of these locations (plus a few additional locations at higher levels). Keep in mind that their reaction has to be friendly (denoted in green) to you in order to purchase riding training from them. In addition, you can purchase mounts from vendors nearby most of these trainers, though if it's your first time, you need to purchase the mount associated with your race. This means you should go to the zone that is in the capital city of closest to the capital city that your starting area was in (if you need more tips on finding these trainers and vendors, feel free to ask in the comments).

However, learning to ride isn't just about finding the trainers and vendors. Riding mounts can be expensive. The price points for the training and mounts you can easily acquire go as follows (you can also see this handy chart here):
  • At level 20, you can learn Apprentice Riding for up to 4 gold while the mounts cost 1 gold. Having Apprentice Riding increases your movement speed by 60%.
  • At level 40, you can learn Journeyman Riding for up to 50 gold while the mounts cost 10 gold. Having Journeyman Riding increases your movement speed by 100%.
    • You don't really have to buy one though, as mounts always grant the same movement speed bonus based on your Riding Training.
  • At level 60, you can learn Expert Riding for up to 250 gold while the mounts cost 50 gold. This allows you to fly at 150% movement speed if you can fly in the area (if you don't know of the continents listed below, don't worry, as you'll learn of them at higher levels).
    • By default, you can fly in Outland.
    • You can fly in Azeroth if you buy the Flight Master's License, which is available at level 60 for up to 250 gold.
    • You can fly in Northrend if you buy Cold Weather Flying, which is available at level 68 for up to 500 gold.
    • You can fly in Pandaria if you buy Wisdom of the Four Winds, which is available at level 90 for up to 2500 gold.
  • At level 70, you can learn Artisan Riding for up to 5000 gold while the mounts cost 100 gold. This allows you to fly at 280% movement speed if you can fly in the area.
    • This is expensive and generally considered a luxury. Also you don't really have to buy the mounts (the rare versions will also fly at the same movement speed bonus).
  • At level 80, you can learn Master Riding for up to 5000 gold. This allows you to fly at 310% movement speed if you can fly in an area.
    • This is even more of a luxury than Artisan Riding. Probably not even worth it, in my opinion.
With that said, this is what you should be saving money for so that you can travel faster as opposed to running everywhere.

How Mounts Work
    Mounts are sort of like a learned ability that is stored account-wide and can be used if the character has sufficient riding training (keep in mind this means you can get away with having only two mounts to travel places). You can open the Mounts and Pets window with the Shift-P hotkey (defaults to the mount window) or on the menu option shown below:
    You will then see a window like this (if you end up in the Pet Journal tab just switch to the Mounts):
    This mount is pretty expensive.
    From here you can manually cast the mount that you have learned (you also get a nice model viewer to see the mount that is currently selected). You can also drag the mount button onto the actionbar (left click the icon to the left of the mount name) for easier use.

    The usage of mounts has some rules to it as well. For instance, you cannot get on a mount in combat and damage will cancel any mount cast (which is 1.5 seconds). After you're on a mount and get into combat you will remain on your mount, though if you take any combat-oriented action you will be dismounted. Enemies can knock you off your mount. For instance, (non-player) enemies attacking you from behind can Daze you which will knock you off your mount (this is something you should be careful of in general if you run away from enemies). Some player abilities can also dismount you.

    Mounts cannot be used indoors either. While in most cases it is apparently whether you are indoors or outdoors, some areas (even inside instances) are considered outdoors. The easy way to determine if you can mount up somewhere is to check if the mount spell icon is darkened out on the actionbars.

    Other Methods of Travel

    Outside of using mounts and flight paths, you can get access to ships and/or zeppelins that act as a transit between multiple areas. You can also access some portals that quickly take you to another area (usually a capital city). Here are some of the additional methods of travel that are of great benefit at lower levels:
    • For Alliance, there is the Deeprun Tram that runs between Ironforge and Stormwind. You can find this on the town maps or you can ask a guard (ask about the Points of Interest if you don't find the option).
    • Alliance can also take ships that essentially go from Stormwind to the Exodar and Darnassus. These ships will all travel between a hub port in the zone of Darkshore.
    • The Horde have an intertwined zeppelin system that has travel between the following areas:
      • One zeppelin goes between Orgrimmar and Thunder Bluff (very slow - use the flight path).
      • There are three sets of zeppelins that go between Orgrimmar, Undercity, and Stranglethorn Vale, all of which have two way travel between each other.
      • You can find the zeppelin towers that are within or near the capital cities by asking a guard.
    • The Horde also have an orb of translocation that allows travel between Undercity and Silvermoon City. The orbs are located to the right (through the door) after going through the entrance to the upper part of the Undercity (before you actually take the elevators down) and deep within Sunfury Spire in Silvermoon City (check the map).
    • There is a neutral ship that travels between Ratchet (in the Northern Barrens) and Booty Bay (in the Cape of Stranglethorn).
    At higher levels you will get access to even more methods of travel. As they become available or relevant I will go over them.

    1 comment:

    1. Good guide. I definitely need to pick up some better / cooler mounts!