Which Class is the Easiest to Level?

hunter class logo

A little while ago, I polled my friends at Twitter (you can follow me at @halophoenix, by the way) to find out what the WoW players I know think are the easiest classes to level.

Old wisdom has always been that hunters and warlocks are the easiest to level because you almost had a second character there to help you in the form of a hunter’s pet or a warlock’s summon. I’ve played both classes and found them pretty easy to level, but my main is a hunter and the lock I play is pretty small, so I was curious what other people thought.

Are Death Knights the automatic winner because they start at 55, and the biggest help to leveling is getting rid of those 55 levels to grind? At the same time, retribution paladins have gotten a lot of dps love lately – are they easier to level? I’m playing a ret pally alt right now and she seems to blow through levels faster than I can get her gear for them. What about warriors? Has the nerf stick hit them so hard no one plays them anymore? And what happened to all of the rogues?

Well, the Twitterati came through in a big way. While no one really agreed on a specific class that’s definitely the easiest to level, some trends appeared. There was “easy classes” to level, and there were “unrewarding and completely too difficult” classes to level.

draenei paladin

Among the winners? Shadow priests, retribution paladins (as expected), hunters of all specs (also expected), and one passionate vote for warlocks even though they had their hayday a few patches ago and no one seems to play them much anymore. My good friends @nanceinsnow and @transrelativity both weighed in in support of shdow priests, locks, and of course, hunters. (although nance’s dps output is making me want to change specs from BM to survival…) The trend seems to be that dps classes are the easiest, which makes sense – they’re designed for damage output, which makes questing and grinding that much faster. The only class to buck the trend were death knights (suggested by my guildmate Yoshi, who tanks with a 2-hander with style), which were easy not just because of their massive DPS but also because they start at 55, and sure enough – skipping 55 levels makes a difference.

prot warrior

Among the losers? Restoration druids, protection warriors and paladins, and elemental shaman. (unless you’re a multi-boxer and have enough of them to one-shot elites 5 levels above you!) The trend there isn’t so clear. I can understand why prot-spec’d anyone would be difficult to level: you’re specced for damage absorption, not output. Resto druids I can understand too – healing classes are designed for, well, healing. Elemental shamans I was confused by though.

holy priest

One stand-out though: a good friend in my guild, @tongarityphoon pointed out that she thought holy priests were the easiest to level. I boggled; holy priests? Cloth-wearing healers? Easy to level? How could that possibly be? She insisted; it was the easiest class to level she’d ever played. I’m still skeptical: I might have to roll one to find out.

So what about you? What classes have you played that you found particularly easy to level? Does it matter where in the cycle of patches from launch it was? Rogues and enhancement shaman were in vogue about a year ago, as were warlocks; everyone was playing them. Then along came the nerf train and the new expansion and it seems like everyone who played a rogue now plays a death knight. Additionally, you can’t find someone to pick up all the caster plate that drops in Naxx to save your life.

Maybe it’s a function of which class is on top at the moment, but some classes are consistently easy to grind. Let us know your picks in the comments!

3 Comments so far

  1. tongarityphoon on April 29th, 2009 @ 4:22 am

    Hey, damned if I understand it or could explain it to you. I mean, I boggled – all the way to 60, and then to 70. When I get around to pushing the alts to 80, I guess I’ll boggle again.

  2. Alan Henry (phoenix) on May 4th, 2009 @ 12:21 am

    I think I’m going to follow your example, although I loathe to roll a healer. It’s just so much pressure! I don’t know how you manage it – I think you secretly hate all of us. :)

  3. AraChnoPhoBia (unregistered) on September 28th, 2010 @ 7:41 pm

    Maybe it will sound strange, but I have to partly disagree with the above list. Protection warrior is very easy to level in my opinion. I remember how easily I was soloing group quests, killing strong elites myself, that were supposed to be slain in groups of 3 people. You may think it’s easier to find someone to push zou through these quests or find a group to complete these, but I wasn’t so lucky doing this and so I decided to swap to protection talents (Arms previously) and solo through these.
    On the other hand, I agree that hunters are quite easy to level, I’ve actually leveled one myself and I guess it really was quite easy and fast. Only hard thing about leveling a hunter was fightning in small rooms or corridors. That has always been a pain in the neck.

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