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World of Warcraft: A Beginner's Guide


How do I navigate the world of Warcraft?
©2006 Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. All rights reserved. The Burning Crusade is a trademark, and World of Warcraft and Blizzard Entertainment are trademarks or registered trademarks of Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

There are four continents in "World of Warcraft." Kalimdor, the Eastern Kingdoms and Northrend are on the planet of Azeroth. The fourth continent, Outland, is on the remains of a remote planet. Characters of all levels can play in Kalimdor and Eastern Kingdoms, but Outland is designed for levels 58 and up. There's no level requirement to get to Northrend, but characters who haven't gotten to their high 60s won't last long in the wilds there.

To travel back and forth between Kalimdor and the Eastern Kingdoms, Alliance characters can take a boat, and Horde characters can take a zeppelin, each of which is free. To travel to Outland, you can walk through the Dark Portal located in the Blasted Lands in the Eastern Kingdoms. To get back, you can take portals from the neutral city of Shattrath to each of the factions' capital cities. Alliance characters can get to Northrend via boat from the city of Stormwind, and Horde characters can travel via zeppelin from Undercity.

Other travel methods include:

  • Hearthstone: A hearthstone is part of your inventory. As you're leveling, it's a good idea to set your hearth for the zone in which you're working on quests. To do this, just talk to an innkeeper.
  • Air taxi: For a small fee, a flying beast will carry you to a particular location. You must have picked up the corresponding flight path by speaking to the flight master who works there. Flight masters for paths you haven't yet discovered are marked with green exclamation points.
  • Mounts: At level 40, you can purchase and learn to ride your race's mount. If you're a paladin, you can learn a spell to summon a mount from a class trainer. At level 60, you can buy an epic mount, which is a faster mount -- paladins and warlocks can complete quests to learn to summon their own epic mounts. At level 70, you can buy a flying mount and a swift flying mount. Druids can gain flying abilities at level 68 by learning flight form from a class trainer. They can complete a quest to learn swift flight form at level 70.
  • Portals, teleports and summons: Mages can teleport themselves from place to place or summon portals for other players to use. Druids can teleport themselves to the druid sanctuary of Moonglade. Warlocks can summon other players to their locations. Characters that learn the engineering profession can build devices they can use to teleport themselves to particular cities.
  • Summoning stones: You can summon members of your party to summoning stones located outside of instances.

You can explore much of this world by yourself, but to get to some locations, you need a group. Next, we'll look at how to meet people in the game.