Yup I dinged 80 yesterday after discovering an area in Icecrown which made me happy and sad. Sad because I still had 5 quest to turn in! /cry
First of all I'd like to thank my wife for supporting me in this crazy endeavour and waking me up after taking 2 hour naps to catch up on leveling =)
I have never enjoyed leveling like this before. So many fun and interesting quest. They really made it so you are the Hero. Here are my experiences
Howling Fjord 70-72
This is where I started. Really neat zones. It also gives you a nice background about the lore. Sometimes I had to fall in line for a named mob which takes anywhere from 2-3 minutes. Good thing most of the allies aren't looking for a fight. I finished the quests achievement for this zone.
Borean Tundra 72-74
This zone was packed I mean packed. Zone was not as beautiful as Howling but that did not stop me from questing there. I finished the quest achievement. I ran nexus only when I had all the quest. Finished it and I was done.
Another excellent zone. I did the Wrath gate questline by accident lol. I finished the quest achievement just by following my quest.
Tip: When you get the quest from the wyrmest to ride a drake and wreck havoc. Don't turn it in till you leave the zone. It's like a free mount basically to navigate around the zone easily.
Grizzly hills - 76-77
I was all over the place on this zone. I had trouble going back and forth to do quest and turn in. I was spoiled by the earlier zones >_>. After hitting level 77 I finished the free port to dalaran quest, got the cold weather flying mount, finished some easy quest then I moved on.
Shalazar Basin 77-78
The best leveling zone in my opinion. Hunting zone really. It's Hemit Nesingwary's zone so what can I expect? Kill stuff! Also questing for an oversize amazon proved to be rewarding =P. All the quest are well done except for 1 .. the quest where you have to find the key under the water. So annoying.
You can get a whole level from this zone and finish it around 3-4 hours.
While I was at basin I was summoned by guidies to do the arena event very much like the Ring of Blood from Nagrand. Easy xp I tell ya and the best part is you get Blue items in the end which will replace you item =P. Our healer replaced his healing mace from Sunwell and I got the 2H axe whose dps is way way up there from what I was using.
You know what's interesting? A voidwalker tanked all the bosses.
You get the quest from the Goblin under the Sewers at Dalaran. Don't miss this one!
Storm Peaks 78-79
This zone introduces you to the Vrykul's lore. One of my best memories of this zone was the quest where you are flying on a drake then you jump into an enemies drake while flying and fight to the death! Was that epic or what? This is the 2nd zone where I did not complete the quest achievement. I moved on after I hit 79. I wanted a better xp/hour zone and I know I'll get some easy xp from starting quest from Icecrown.
Tip: If you only have a handful of quest left don't abandon it. At one time I had 2 quest. This zone really has assloads of chain quest and requires you to finish some certain quest to pop up. So be patient!
This is one of the zones where they use their phasing system freely. Example was I was sent to a cliff, defend it, I went back to camp then turned the quest in, got another quest to go back the same cliff and BAM cliff is now a quest hub lol. This happened like 3+ times.
Do you like bombing missions? Then your in for a treat here!
Some quest can be done twice because they turn into a daily. Do it again if you felt that quest was easy.
I don't recommend going in here as 78 or lower. If you can find a partner to do some quest it will be much easier.
What can I say, Blizzard really did a good job on the leveling zones. I really had a good time. So much work has been done and it really shows. Tons of variety in quests. I still have a zone to do and I have to finish the quest line in Storm Peaks to get some Rep with Son Of Thorin or w/e.
Well heroics are no pushover =) They hit like a truck. We finished Nexus and Az nerub last night. My group already finished UK early that afternoon so I didn't do it. I was tanking them cause we had no tanks. All of them were in Naxx.
I got a blue shield from the last boss at Nexus last night which had 7k+ armor. WOW! Goodbye Kazrogal's hardened heart. I wanna do more heroics later today to get some upgrades. Hopefully I get some tonight =).
Any tanks here know any good items from heroics? I need some upgrades!