The Queue: Tradeskill bits and pieces

Welcome back to The Queue, WoW Insider's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft.

First off, I want to apologize for an error I made yesterday. I didn't research the sockets that Blacksmiths can give only to themselves enough, and due to one-part misinformation, one-part assumption, I said those sockets overwrite enchants from Enchanting. That's actually not true. Leatherworking's fur linings do overwrite enchants. Tailoring's cloak embroidery overwrites enchants. Blacksmithing's sockets do not. Again, I apologize for that. Socket One-Handed Weapon still never made it into the game, though. With that all said, let's get into the questions.

pietrex asked...

I've got another question about sockets. I remember that we had lots of socketed quest rewards in Outlands. But I've completed three zones in Northrend and seen only few of these. Does it change in mid-70 zones or do we have to wait until we get our hands on gear from Heroics?

You start seeing sockets again once you near level 80, and you see them a lot once you start getting high-end gear again. Unless you can produce the gems yourself, people usually aren't going to bother putting gems in leveling gear, especially green quest rewards. It feels like wasted money since the gear will be replaced very, very quickly.

Once I hit 80 and started running the 10-man raids, I got my hands on plenty of gear with sockets. As soon as I did, I dropped about a thousand gold min-maxing my little heart out with my gems. Jewelcrafters, here's a tip: For the next month or so, raiders are going to be gobbling up +Hit gems. They'll always be in demand, but right now it's at its worst. Everyone wanting to dive straight into raid content has abysmal hit from their level 70 gear deteriorating and leveling gear not having enough to take you straight into raids. +Hit gems are in massive demand for at least another few weeks.

Prot asked...

In the past I was able to level up my Paladin with a lot of instance runs combined with rested XP. It seems like in Northrend that a good dungeon is giving much less XP than before. Is this true or am I just imagining things?

You still get quite a bit of XP from instances, but you're not in them as long as you used to be. Azjol-Nerub certainly doesn't give you as much XP as Blood Furnace did (percentage-wise), but you're not exactly in Azjol-Nerub as long as you were in Furnace, are you? Azjol-Nerub takes you 20-30 minutes, maybe 45 your first time there. Blood Furnace takes longer than that at the appropriate level. It's just a result of needing to kill and clear less crap now than in older dungeons.

Ithaqua asked...

I play a Resto Leatherworking Druid, and skinning is fairly important to me while I level LW and keep my guildies stocked. I recently found one of the best places to farm Nerubian Chitin is phased out in Icecrown if you continue too far along the quest line. Are there other places where this is the case? Should those of certain professions avoid questing in certain areas until they have a good stock of goods?

I think this is a unique situation, and I get the feeling that the fact that these mobs have the highest rate of giving Skinners Nerubian Chitin is specifically because they're a limited time only deal. A 'get while the getting is good' sort of deal. That's just my feeling though, I have nothing to back that up.

There are other places you can get the chitin, those mobs simply had an inflated rate at which they coughed it up. Other spots in Icecrown have Nerubians you can skin, you get hefty amounts of it in Azjol-Nerub/Ahn'kahet, and... Raptors in Zul'Drak give Nerubian Chitin, according to Wowhead? My brain hurts.

Well, anyway, I think this is a unique case. I can't think of any situations where ore or herbs are phased out, and I can't even think of any other situations where important types of leather are phased out. How about you, my lovely readers? Can you think of anymore of these situations so we watch out for them? Most of the other phasing scenarios I can think of just get rid of annoyances or mobs that don't drop anything of worth.


What's behind that giant gate to the north of Stormwind Harbor, the one with the giant bar on it?

I think that's just a dockyard/shipyard. It's part of a harbor that's somewhat cut off a little bit, separated from everything else, where they build or repair ships. This is Warcraft though, so behind that door could be Deathwing's summer home that was built by Katrana Prestor's underlings before King Wrynn made his comeback and booted her behind out.

Have questions about the World of Warcraft? The WoW Insider crew is here with The Queue, our daily Q&A column! Leave your questions in the comments and we'll do our best to answer 'em!