Battle for Azeroth brought a couple of changes to the professions.
The skill cap was changed. Well it was actually broken out into several caps.
The maximum profession skill levels have been lowered for each profession tier:
The Classic professions, everything before Outlands, have a maximum of skill level of 300.
The Outland and Northrend professions each have a maximum skill level of 75.
The Cataclysm professions have a maximum skill level of 75.
The Pandaria professions have a maximum skill level of 75.
The Warlords of Draenor and Legion professions each have a maximum cap of 100.
And the Battle for Azeroth professions have a maximum of 150.
More on the Skill Levels
Each main skill, eg: Herbalism, as being broken down into eight sub-skills.
Each individual crafting or gathering technique has three levels. As you go from levels 1 to 3 you either pay less in resources or get more items from your effort. Level 3, obviously, is the most efficient.
So the Level 3 helm isn’t any better than a level 1, but it costs less to make. Likewise your level 3 cookies. In that case you get more of them than the level 1 recipe.
A quest is required to bring each technique to the next level.
You do have to get trained to get any particular skill, but you do not need to have the previous levels. Yes, you can grab a Battle for Azeroth profession and level that from skill 1, without needing the earlier skills. This is new and kinda cool.
You can, for example, blast to 120, and pick up a BFA profession without knowing the previous levels of that profession. Or, you could, for example, have 0 points of skill in Classic, 73 in Outlands, 0 in Cataclysm and Pandaria, 100 in Warlords, 3 in Legion, and 150 in Battle for Azeroth.
As you quest in Draenor you will quickly find scrolls that will give you access to the Draenor level skills. The scrolls for crafts (Blacksmithing, etc.) will require a short quest. Scrolls for the secondary professions (1st aid, etc.) will simply give you access directly.
While in Draenor you’ll find that Garrisons are a big help to the professions. In fact, you won’t actually need to have skinning, mining, or herbalism as you can gain decent quantities of all of those materials through your garrison. Having the skills will, however, let you farm/gather all that stuff that’s not in your garrison.
Note that since few people are farming the old world it might be worth your while to raise your skill and head back there, where your gathered goods might well sell for a lot more than the Draenor goods.
Followers in your garrison will allows you to get more of the basic materials and allows access to some interesting items.
Profession Bonuses are dead as of Warlords of Draenor. No longer to you get extra slots from Blacksmithing, stamina from mining, and so on. They’re pretty much now all for gold making or creating some useful items.
Crafting professions can make raid quality gear, but the catch is that these items are very expensive to create.
If you’re just starting out and/or gold is an issue, then you might want to skip the crafting professions till you have enough gold to buy mats or the time (and the level) to farm them all. We can’t help with the time problem, but our gold guide can help with the cash flow.
- Alchemy – You will be able to create a large variety of useful potions that will heal, restore mana, regenerate health, let you move faster, breathe underwater, and so on.
- Blacksmithing – You will be able to create all kinds of mail and plate weapons and armor
- Enchanting – One of the most expensive professions to level, but you can save a lot of gold by disenchanting items, perhaps from Tailoring, into parts that you can sell or use. Use this skill to add enhancements to most of your, or your friends’, gear and weapons.
- Engineering – Very expensive to level, but you will be able to create some nifty gadgets, including those motorcycles you see some people riding around in. Mining is a compatible profession, since you will go through a lot of metal to level this skill.
- Inscription – Plays best with Herbalism. Not as grimly expensive to level as some of the others, but you will go through a lot of herbs. Create glyphs, cool magic items, and some enchants. It’s also a decent money maker.
- Jewelcrafting – You can be your own Tiffany Diamonds Company. Well, not quite, but you will be able to cut all kinds of interesting gems and make some nice jewelry. This skill plays well with Mining, since you will “prospect” the ore for your gems. Jewelcrafting
- Leatherworking – Plays best with skinning. There are a bazillion skinable mobs in WoW, skin them all and you’ll have enough materials to level this profession cheaply. At the higher levels you can make mail armor as well as leather, so this skill is great for Rogues, Druids, Shamen, and Hunters. Leatherworking
- Tailoring – Save all that cloth that you’re collecting as you level up as you can use it to level your Tailoring skill. Mages, Priests, and Warlocks can create some nice armor and gear with this skill.
- Leveling Herbalism – Yes, you’re a flower picker. Here’s where to go and what to pick to get your skill up. Herbalism is a nice little gold maker, too.
- Leveling Skinning – Also a fine gold making skill. The skins can also be used in leatherworking and a couple of other skills. With a bazillion mobs to skin in the game you will never run out of skins to sell or use.
- Leveling Mining – Another good skill for earning gold. Your ores are used by blacksmiths, engineers, Jewelcrafters, and sometimes others.
- Leveling First Aid – First Aid has been eliminated in Battle for Azeroth. All bandages are now made by the Tailoring profession. Those bandages are basically the same as the previous bandages. Just talk to a friendly tailor or buy them off the Auction House.
- Leveling Cooking – You can cook up lots of interesting foods, some of which will buff various stats. These buffs stack with those of any of the above skills, as well as with other buffs.
- Fishing – Cast out a line and catch… weeds. If your skill is high enough for the area that you’re fishing then you will catch more fish than weeds. The fish can be used in cooking recipes and some can be used by Alchemists (eg: Oily Blackmouth.) Lures will increase your fishing skill for a few minutes. We do not have a fishing guide at this time.
- Leveling Archaeology – Learn about the lore of the world and find strange new artifacts. You will occasionally find Arch. bits in your Garrison mine.
Need a hand with your professions? Check out Dugi’s Guide. Yeah, it’s a leveling guide, but included in the package is a Professions Guide, which will help you max out your professions as quickly and easily as possible. And, just in case you need to blast through a few levels, it’s excellent at that as well. Take a full look, here.