How do Cataclysm professions measure up for us?
To keep things tidy, I’ve split the professions up into four categories:
Fun - fun items such as pets, mounts, and novelties.
Utililty - things to make your life easier.
Money - things to make you rich, or at least pay the bills.
Raiding - the items that will buff you for raiding.
|Alchemy||Bonus to flasks via Mixology - +80int
+40% to potions via Alchemist Stone
|Double duration flasks
Draught of War - nonrated BGs
Make your own epic trinket
|Sell dragon mount
Double duration flasks and endless flask means less money spent on consumables
Selling flasks, potions and elixirs
Master of potions, elixirs or transmutes
Sell potion to teleport to Deepholm
Potion to find extra treasure - sometimes rewards you with a Tiny Treasure Chest
|Turn into a dragon mount|
|Blacksmithing||Two extra sockets (gloves, bracers) - +80int||None||Lots of BOEs
Eternal Belt Buckles
, Ebonsteel Belt Buckles
|Enchanting||Enchant rings x 2 - +80int||DEing for your group/raid|
|Engineering||Synapse Springs - equivalent to 96int, and/or an emergency boost to your spellpower, and a buff to your innervate (see TBJ article on this)
Nitro Boosts (warning: boosts have a high failure rate and may wipe your group!) or Grounded Plasma Shield (macro me to Barkskin!)
|Make your own BOE epic helm, with Cogwheel sockets; on par with T11 helm but gives you more flexibility over your stats (eg haste, mastery, spirit)
Heat-Treated Spinning Lure
Nitro Boosts or Grounded Plasma Shield
MOLL-E - portable mailbox
Volatile Seaforium Blastpack
Jeeves - portable repairs/bank
Ultrasafe Transporter - Gadgetzan - port to Gadget
|Sell BOE weapons
Sell pets and mounts
Sell Elementium Toolbox
Sell Lure Master Tackle Box
|Mechanical Dragonling, Mithril Mechanical Dragonling, Arcanite Dragonling, Elementium Dragonling
Personal World Destroyer, De-Weaponized Mechanical Companion
Authentic Jr. Engineer Goggles
|Herbalism||Lifeblood - 240 haste for 20secs, 2min cooldown||Farm for your own flasks/potions
Disguise yourself as an herb, and regen health/mana from it
and Volatile Life
|Disguise yourself as an herb|
|Inscription||Felfire Inscription - 130int + 25 haste, compared to Greater Inscription of Charged Lodestone - 50int +25 haste = 80int||Scroll of Recall III - additional hearth|| Darkmoon Cards/trinkets
BOE offhand items
Make and sell glyphs and scrolls
Certificate of Ownership
BOE relics such as Tattooed Eyeball
Cheaper shoulder enchants
|Origami Slime, Origami Rock, Origami Beetle|
|Jewelcrafting||+81int (assuming you use three JC-only int gems)||None||BOEs
Sell services, buy uncut and sell cut gems, buy ore and prospect
Fire Prism - Create rare gems from uncommon gems
The chance to randomly create rare & epic gems
|Stardust - Twilight fans rejoice?
Monocles, Rhinestone Sunglasses
|Leatherworking||Bracer Embossment - +130int||Drums of Forgotten Kings/of the Wild||Lots of BOEs
Sell leg armors and armor kits
|Mining||Toughness - +120stam||None||Sell ore, bars, gems and elements||None|
|Skinning||Master of Anatomy + 80 crit rating||None||Sell leather||
|Tailoring||Darkglow Embroidery = increases Spirit by 580 for 15 seconds
Lightweave Embroidery Rank 2 = increases Intellect by 580 for 15 seconds
|Master's Spellthread , Sanctified Spellthread - cheap spellthreads||Collect more cloth than non-tailors
BOEs Dreamcloth "transmutes"
High Society Top Hat
Illusionary Bag , Hyjal Expedition Bag, Otherworldly Bag
Powerful Enchanted Spellthread, Powerful Ghostly Spellthread
|Flying carpet mounts|
- Tailoring: ~80 Int average – Lightweave Embroidery (130 Int at the cost of 50 Int enchant).
- Jewelcrafting: 81 Int – Brilliant Chimera’s Eye x 3 (instead of Brilliant Inferno Ruby x 3)
- Engineering: 80 Int average – Synapse Springs, boosted Innervates, survivability tinkers
- Leatherworking: 80 Int – Draconic Embossment – Intellect (130 Int at the cost of 50 Int enchant, OR 50 Haste, 50 Spirit, 65 Mastery)
- Alchemy: 80 Int – Mixology
- Blacksmithing: 80 Int – Socket Bracer + Socket Gloves (Brilliant Inferno Ruby x 2)
- Enchanting: 80 Int – Enchant Ring – Intellect x 2
- Inscription: 80 Int – Felfire Inscription (130 Int at the cost of 50 Int from Greater Inscription of Charged Lodestone)
- Herbalism/Mining/Skinning - not suitable for raiding characters
Which is best?
Jewelcrafting, Leatherworking, Alchemy, Blacksmithing, Enchanting, Tailoring and Inscription are strong, and roughly equal. Engineering has the equivalent of 80 Intellect (if used well; less if not used efficiently) and provides a bit of survivability.
If a profession gives roughly equal raiding benefit, I would then be inclined to look to the other categories - do I want utility? Do I want to make money? Or have some fun? This will help you to choose between them.