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Maximising your gaming endurance for that precious realm first


Derevka, of Tales of a Priest fame, is looking to add a string to his bow by joining the race for Realm First level 90. He's already one of the top Discipline priests out there, and will be engaging in the leveling battle along with his guild, Something Wicked.

Mists' launch is at 3.00am in Derevka's local time, and anyone who has tried to engage in a Realm First, or even World First race before will know full well that it's a long hard slog. This time around is no different, with a massive 97.5 million XP to get through from 85 to 90. We will be speaking to Derevka after his race attempt to get the low-down on all his innovative tactics and tips, so be sure to check back for that.

But today's post concerns you, the player. Staying up for as long as it takes to get from 85 to 90 is not something anyone does every week, and it can be a real endurance test for body and mind. As gamers ourselves, who understand what it's like, we would never tell you not to do it, so we're going to talk instead about ways you can do it better. How can you increase your endurance and mental acuity for the race to 90?

Maximising your gaming endurance

Well, Derevka has put together an excellent set of tips to maximise your capability while staying awake for hours on end. As Derevka puts it, "Expansion launches are often a time when people toss caution to the wind, eat crappy food, guzzle down Red Bull, coffee, and stay awake until their eyes are red and sore from staring at their screen."

We know full well that you're not going to shy away from the last part, so let's work on the first part. Derevka, as a self-professed health nut, has some great tips, which, as a health-conscious person myself, I'll paraphrase here. For the full list of what he's going to do, check out Derevka's blog.

  1. Food: Stay away from sugar. Sugar is a short-term boost, you'll spike and crash, probably feeling worse in the long term than if you'd not eaten at all. Stick with protein and slow-release or high-GI carbs. Nuts, granola, porridge, that sort of thing. Eat little and often rather than loading up with a huge meal -- that'd make you more sleepy. Prepare things in advance so you're not tempted by the convenience of snacks.
  2. Drinks: Again, lay off the sugar, and try not to go down the caffeine route. If you're almost at 90 and really flagging, a sugar and/or caffeine boost could be what you need to carry you over the line, but if you go for it too early you'll spike and crash. As Derevka points out, caffeine is a diuretic, which is a bad thing. Try to stick to water, natural fruit juice, or my personal favorite, caffeine-free tea. I'm sure I don't need to tell you that alcohol is a bad move for acuity and endurance!
  3. Exercise: Ha! Exercise?! I'm going to be exercising my fingers and nothing else! Well, a short burst of high-power exercise can be a huge wake-up call, kickstarting your body and making you feel more awake. It doesn't need to be a jog around the block, but when you're on a flight path, or there's un-skippable dialogue, do some burpees, crunches, whatever you can handle.
  4. Change: If you're flagging, change it up. Turn music on or off, open a window, stand instead of sitting. If you can, change your view. As the old saying goes, a change is as good as a rest.
Derevka's health walk-through is more extensive, and lets you know exactly what he'll be up to. Good luck!

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

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