I've been thinking lately about some of the improvements in patch 3.2 and I came to a conclusion. Whenever the features of these new patches are announced I try to plan in advance. One of the best things that patch 3.2 brings is the mount changes. I discussed them a bit already in my Stop Leveling Your Alts, Now! article.
Thinking about the whole thing though, led me to the conclusion that not only will leveling be faster, but everyone will have the opportunity to save a lot of gold in the process. Of course, saving gold is entirely optional. If you have more gold than you know what to do with, knock yourselves out and buy your epic flying mounts.
For all the rest of you/us, I give you the cheap(er) alternative. Provided you meet the following conditions, you should qualify for a... flying tax reduction:
- - You have at least 1 level 80 character
- - You have at least an alt that's either 60 and needs to run through Outland/Northrend or an alt that's 68 or higher and needs to run through Northrend
- - Your alt doesn't already have a flying mount
- - You have a measly 1650 gold (and don't tell me you can't make 1650 gold, or I will call you a casual!)
The wonderful changes in patch 3.2 will allow a player of level 60 to equip a flying mount as soon as they hit Outland. At this level, a player will be able to train Expert Riding for 600 gold or even less after faction discounts. A normal flying mount will now cost only 50 gold. In Outland you won't be needing Cold Weather Flying so the grand total for now is 650 gold. Once you hit Northrend at 68-70, you will have your level 80 buy a Tome of Cold Weather Flying for 1000 gold and send it to your alt. Total damages: 1650 gold. Here's the kicker: normal flying mounts will be flying at 150% speed compared to the "old" normal mounts that currently fly at 60%. Woohoo!
This means that not only we are able to actually fly in Outland and Northrend from 60 all the way to 80 but instead of riding on the ground at 100% speed, we will be flying at 150% speed!
The actual time needed to get between points A and B will be even less due to the fact that we will be circumventing all obstacles and there won't be anymore hostile mobs on our tails trying to dismount us.
Finally, all this means that epic flying mounts have become more like a luxury as opposed to being a necessity. Are you poor and can't afford a 7000 gold 280% mount? No problem! Now you can fly at 150% for a fraction of the cost. Here's my real-life example:
I have 3 level 80's, all with epic flying mounts. I also have 2 level 70's: a warlock and a rogue. Before news of patch 3.2 hit, I had gotten very tired of running yet another alt through Northrend on horseback. On the other hand I kinda needed to level them since I need my rogue to be able to open the high-level lockboxes and I need my warlock to get the Glacial Bag recipe from the Sons of Hodir. Apart from that, I won't be spending any more gold on them since I just need them to be 80 for their skills. Now, I will finally be able to level them easily and also cheaply. I definitely won't be spending 7000 gold for each of the 2.
On the other hand, I have a level 66 orc shaman on another server who is on his own. Unfortunately, this dude will have to make his way to 80 the hard way. In his case, I'm ok with leveling him yet again through the remainder of Outland and the whole of Northrend for the simple fact that he's Horde and the bases, quests and story are different from Alliance, excepting the neutral ones of course.
And that's my conclusion and also my advice to you, friends: if you have one or more alts that you don't want to invest a lot in but still need to level, there will be no better time than post-patch 3.2. Don't be bothering with those epic flying mounts: unless you're swimming in gold they won't be worth as much as before.