Part Seven: Professions
Some offer outright buffs and improvements, but others offer something else that maybe isn’t as useful but, and one is even downright useless.
- Alchemy; Bonus: Increased duration and effect of flasks and elixirs, also a pretty cool trinket. You gain a bonus to any flask and elixirs you can make. At 85, this means that using Flask of the Draconic Mind will give you a +80 intellect boost as well as lasting twice as long. The trinket is a rather awesome Intellect + Haste (and red socket) alchemists stone, definitely worth getting as it won’t be replaced quickly.
- Blacksmithing; Bonus: 2 extra gem sockets. Blacksmithing has one of the most versatile bonus of any profession. The ability to place a prismatic socket on both your gloves and your bracers. This means even if you are not a JC (and thus able to use Chimera’s eye) you can get an instant +80 Intellect (using the best currently available gem). Alternatively, you can use the sockets to buff another stat if you want such as haste or similar without losing any socket bonus, though I would advise the stacking of Intellect.
- Enchanting; Bonus: Ring enchants. Again, this is quite a good bonus, as you have 2 rings, it means you can get double the bonus So a total of +80 intellect (40 per ring) is rather nice for resto.
- Engineering; Bonus: Cogwheels and item enhancement. Given that crafted engineering epics are iLevel 359, and that the stats on the cogwheels are rather amazing, it means that a engi helm with cogwheels will take a lot of replacing, even when raiding, as you get a iLevel 359 helm that can have +208 spirit and +208 haste. As for enhancements, the Synapse Springs are quite good and can give +480 Intellect for 12 seconds per minute.
- Herbalism; Bonus: Lifeblood ability. This isn’t too bad as an additional ability to have when needed, I have mine bound to ToL so I get the +480 haste buff when I need it most. It isn’t the best by a long way but does at least give you some (temporary) buff.
- Inscription; Bonus: Improved shoulder enchants. If you are not into rep grinding then this is a good one. Better enchantments than you can buy from Therazane and no grind to exalted
- Jewelcrafting; Bonus: 3 improved gems. A rather nice one here, the 3 Chimera’s eye gems will each give +67 Intellect (instead of +40) which is a total gain of +81 additional intellect. Combined with BS for the additional sockets, you can gain +161 intellect in total.
- Leatherworking; Bonus: Improved bracer enchant. Similar to that of Inscription and jewelcrafting, you don’t gain anything totally new, but seriously increase an already present buff. Atm this is single best profession, with a boost of +130 intellect compared to the standard enchant of +65 haste.
- Mining; Bonus: Additional stamina. More stamina = more hp, nice for tanking, useless for resto druids.
- Skinning; Bonus: Additional +80 crit rating. Similar to mining, a passive increase to crit, but crit really isn’t a priority stat for us so I would give it a miss.
- Tailoring; Bonus: Improved cloak enchant. Lightweave embroidery is similar to Synapse Springs as it is only up for some of the time, but will increase your crit and spellpower temporarily when it procs.
As with everything else, these are guidelines for determining your optimum professions. I am not suggesting everyone drops stuff to take LW + Engi or anything. Personally I have alchemy and herbalism and am going to keep them as it would be a waste for me to scrap them after levelling them, and would cost a lot of time/money to level 2 new professions.
However, for those of you who wish to know, probably the best combo of professions is LW and either Engineering (for guaranteed Int boost) or Tailoring (for a proc chance boost).
Jewelcrafting, Alchemy, Blacksmithing, Enchanting and Inscription all give approximately equal gains and there is really no choice between them.
Skinning and herbalism give small gains only.
Mining is no good as resto