Season of Discovery brings new challenges to WoW Classic as well as new content phases with lower level caps. In Phase 1 you’ll only be able to level to 25, which is less than half the maximum level in vanilla WoW. For many players, these early zones are all too familiar. But which are the most efficient for leveling to 25? I’ll go over the best zones for each level bracket below.
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But first, here are all of the zones you might find quests in during this phase as a Horde character:
The Best Level 1-10 Zones
The best zone for leveling in this range will be your racial starting zone.
Orc & Troll: Durotar
Orcs and trolls share a starting zone in Durotar, a land of rocky red canyons where you’ll encounter quilboars, harpies, and Burning Blade cultists as well as plenty of hostile wildlife. One advantage of this zone is its proximity to Orgrimmar, the main city for Horde in WoW Classic. However, with two popular races starting here, it tends to be the most crowded of the three starting zones, which can make it tricky to complete certain quests.
Tauren start out in Mulgore, a verdant green valley where you’ll come across gnolls, quilboars, and harpies as well as numerous types of beasts. Tauren are the least populous race on the Horde side, so this starting zone tends to be the quietest, which means you won’t have as much competition for spawns. Your closest city will be Thunder Bluff, which means you’ll be able to get the Blessing of Blackfathom world buff and visit the Darkmoon Faire if it’s in town.
Undead: Tirisfal Glades
Undead begin their journey in the eerie, blighted land of Tirisfal Glades. After rising from your crypt in Deathknell, you’ll face undead, gnolls, murlocs, and Scarlet Crusade humans in this zone. This area likely won’t be as crowded as Durotar, but it should be more populated than Mulgore. You’ll be close to Undercity and a quick zeppelin ride away from the Horde capital of Orgrimmar.
The Best Level 10-20 Zones
You’ll find that The Barrens is by far the best zone to head to at level 10.
The Barrens is one of the most well-remembered low-level zones in World of Warcraft. It’s an exceptionally large zone for its level, and holds quests that span 15 levels, the broadest level range in Classic WoW. That means a lot of players spend a lot of time there, and its General chat channel is famous for being full of Chuck Norris jokes and questions about how to find Mankrik’s wife.
The sheer quantity of quests in this zone make it hands-down the best zone to level in for this range. You’ll start out at The Crossroads and branch out to Ratchet and Camp Taurajo. The Wailing Caverns dungeon is also in this zone and is a great place to get some extra gear and experience in this level range.
Just be sure to grab the flight paths when you visit each of the three quest hubs. This zone is pretty large and they will help you avoid having to do a lot of running every time you want to get across it.
Silverpine Forest unfortunately does not have the quest density that The Barrens does. There is also a bit of a gap in the level ranges for the quests, so you’re likely to reach a point where the only quests you can find are a little too high level for your character. There are some high level roaming elites here as well, Sons of Arugal, that can catch you by surprise while you’re trying to quest here.
This zone is a good alternative if you are sick of The Barrens and/or are continuing on from Tirisfal Glades, which is directly to the north, but you’ll most likely wind up having to head to The Barrens one way or the other. The Shadowfang Keep dungeon is in this zone, but you won’t be high enough level for it yet.
The Best Level 20-25 Zones
For Horde, The Barrens remains a strong zone all the way to level 25, with plenty of quests to complete.
As stated previously, The Barrens covers a wide range of levels, so you could pretty much just stick it out there all the way to level 25. Be sure to check Camp Taurajo and Ratchet since they will have higher level quests than The Crossroads.
If you do run out of quests in The Barrens, or just get bored of the zone, you can head west into Stonetalon Mountains. Keep in mind that this zone is considered Contested, so you may encounter PvP with Alliance players here. But it will still be less dangerous than Hillsbrad Foothills or Ashenvale, which are your only other good options in this level range.
Some of the quest rewards available in this zone are much better than those you’ll find in The Barrens, but they may require that you be level 25 and/or have a group to complete them.