As I said in last week’s column, I’d strongly suggest leveling multiple characters. Given the three weeks of “downtime” before the release of Uldir and M+, you will likely run out of things to do pretty quickly each week if you only have one character. I’d recommend rolling up at least one alt, and personally I’m aiming to have three characters ready to go on Sept 4. This will give you more options in case Blizzard makes some unexpected balancing changes that gut the class you really wanted to play, but it will also give you something to do when you inevitably finish all the weekly quests on your main character.
You’ll want to have each of your characters at least marginally geared up. The biggest tool for this before M+ opens will be running M0s each week. M0s are important for two reasons: 1) they are by far the most plentiful source of “good” gear in the first few weeks, and 2) they have a chance to drop Azerite pieces (unlike M+). I was skeptical about how important Azerite traits would be in BFA after looking at some of my Azerite armor during beta, but Blizzard has made a very obvious push as BFA launch approaches to buff any traits that appear lackluster. Not all specs have important traits, but at least a few have make-or-break traits that will be crucial. My time in beta has also taught me that Azerite pieces don’t grow on trees, and it might take a while to find something with the traits you want. So getting a head start by clearing M0s will give you opportunities to nab some of those traits before progression starts.
You’ll also want to keep an eye on world quests. Some of them can be safely ignored, but you’ll definitely want to do certain ones each day. There will be a handful of Champions of Azeroth
WQs that you’ll want to do each day since each level of CoA rep (Friendly/Honored/Revered) gives a +15 ilvl boost to your Heart of Azeroth neck. Your neck has some fat secondaries on it, so getting free ilvls will be noticeable. You’ll also want to hit up at least a few Honorbound (if you’re Horde) or 7th Legion (if you’re Alliance) because those reps will be needed to unlock Siege of Boralus
(for Horde) and King’s Rest
(for Alliance). Specifically, you’ll need to get 7500 points into Honored in order to unlock the necessary quests in your War Campaign
before you can enter those dungeons. Independent of reps, there will be some WQs that just have nice equipment (especially some trinkets that are unique to WQs) that could potentially titanforge for you. And like Legion, there will be daily emissary quests that give rep and loot (gold, Azerite power, Azerite caches, etc.) that you’ll want to complete.Leveling your Heart of Azeroth neck
will be important, but it’s tough to say at this point how long it will take. Blizzard jacked up the amount of Azerite needed per level about a month ago in beta, and it turned leveling your neck into some tough sledding. But I’m also hearing that there will be an Artifact Knowledge of sorts except in reverse, where instead of increasing your AP earned each week, your neck will instead require less AP per level each week. So it remains to be seen how much effort your neck will take, but there is some good news: so far it appears that the most impactful traits will be on the first tier of the necklaces. So hopefully even if the neck takes a while to fully unlock, you’ll be able to get the good stuff early on.
Lastly, try to have a group lined up for M+. This doesn’t have to necessarily be a five man unit that does literally everything together, but at least try to have a loose collection of players that you’re confident you can do some dungeons with every day (which ideally includes a few tanks and healers, as they’ll be the hardest roles to find). If you don’t already have a group like that in mind, spend some time pugging M0s and add any notably good players to your BTag for when M+ starts up. Having a consistent group in M+ makes the experience much smoother and a lot more fun.