Mining

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Miners must be tough and precise to succeed - a mining pick is not necessary but can help.
Mining Icon WoW Icon 16x16.png Mining (Profession)
List of ore veinsList of ore by zoneQuestsRecipesTrainers

Mining allows you to find and mine minerals, ores, and stones from resource nodes and certain mobs (see Ore skinning) scattered throughout the world. It is one of the primary professions. Materials from mining and the items miners can create from them are reagents needed for recipes within other professions.

Mining pointers:

Pointer mine on 32x32.png in range of deposit/vein that can be mined
Pointer mine off 32x32.png out of range of deposit/vein

For other articles related to Mining, see the Mining category.

Official overview

Miners pursue valuable and useful ores, extracting them straight from the earth with their picks. Their familiarity with the land gives them a strong notion of where rich veins of gold, silver or even more precious metals can be found, and they retrieve and smelt these minerals for profit, or for use in metalworking of all types.

Miners can spot mineral veins on their mini-map with the Find Minerals ability, and they can gather them quickly (by simply right-clicking on the vein). Miners require mining picks in order to break apart stones and retrieve valuable ores, and, in order to smelt those ores into bars, they need to be near a forge (found in most cities). As you continue to exercise your mining skills and smelt complex combinations of ores into alloys, your Mining skill will grow. High skill values are required to successfully retrieve the rarest minerals.

Mining is a gathering profession. It's often paired with complementary crafting professions, particularly Blacksmithing, Engineering and Jewelcrafting.

Minerals can be found all over Azeroth, though some areas are more mineral-rich than others. Valuable and rare minerals are often difficult to find, but the rewards are worth it - they can command high prices and form potent metals.[1]

Proficiency

Proficiency Level Skill
Apprentice n/a 1 - 75
Journeyman n/a 50 - 150
Expert 10 125 - 225
Artisan 25 200 - 300
Master 40 275 - 375 TBC
Grand Master 55 350 - 450 WotLK
Illustrious Grand Master 75 425 - 525 Cataclysm
Zen Master 80 500 - 600 MoP

Grand Master is only available after installing the expansion Wrath of the Lich King.

Illustrious Grand Master is only available after installing the expansion Cataclysm.

Zen Master is only available after installing the expansion Mists of Pandaria.

Uses

Mining is a complementary profession to blacksmithing, engineering and jewelcrafting. These professions rely specifically on ore and ore-derived materials.

Mining can be a profitable gathering profession because of the large sums utilized by the other primary professions. Jewelcrafters require five ore per prospect, blacksmiths can use dozens of bars for specific items, and engineers use large amounts of ore for the many consumable materials they can create.

Mining skill also grants the player [Toughness].

Economical Gain

As with any gathering professional, low-level characters and characters without economic support may consider using two gathering professions. While this denies the player the ability to directly enhance his or her equipment/abilities, it does allow one to, in theory, make money quickly and easily through the use of the auction house.

Regardless of the method chosen, mining can be profitable. With regards to mining, be sure to check the local prices of your ore against the local prices of your smelted bars. Frequently ores will be more valuable because they can be prospected or smelted for skill points. This desirability leads to increased cost per unit.

Tools and Abilities

A trained apprentice miner will immediately learn the Find Minerals ability, which highlights nearby nodes on the mini-map. A miner will also learn the accompanying Smelting skill. This skill is used to convert one or more ore and elemental ingredients into bars, which are used in various professions. This skill can only be used in the vicinity of a forge, and will occasionally grant skill points depending on the player's profession level.

In addition to a miner's pick and their ore-sensing abilities, dedicated ore farming may require a bag. There are a few mining-specialized bags that can be crafted or bought. These bags typically have 20, 28, or 32 slots respectively and will automatically store mined ores. Mining-bags can also store rocks and elemental items found by mining, smelted bars, a few items created in Jewelcrafting, a few items used in Blacksmithing, and mining picks. For a list, click here.

Addons

  • MapWoW is a great Google Earth-like web application for finding node locations.
  • Gatherer is an add-on that can keep track of historical mining data. It can keep track of when and where you last mined a node. Additionally, it can be partnered with GathererDB. This addon is a communal database of mined ore.
  • GatherMate is a replacement for the now defunct Cartographer_Mining. It aims to be map addon independent. It can be combined with Routes to produce a traveling salesman route to all nodes in a given zone.
  • Carbonite will allow you to plan a route through the locations of all veins in a region. This allows efficient farming.

Items

  • Some weapons claim they serve as a mining pick, but do not necessarily increase skill:
 [Kobold Excavation Pick]
 [Gouging Pick]
 [Cold Iron Pick]
 [Miner's Revenge]
 [Tunnel Pick]
 [Digmaster 5000]
 [Brann's Trusty Pick]
 [Shatterstone Pick]
 [Gyromatic Micro-Adjustor]
 [Arclight Spanner]
 [Blacksmith Hammer]
 [Mining Pick]
 [Skinning Knife]
 [Herbalist's Spade]

Enchants

Ablities

  • Paladins, Frost Death Knights, Hunters, Druids and Engineers have a slight advantage in mining because of speed increasing talents.
  • Rogues also have an advantage, as some mining deposits are in caves filled with mobs. Players usually don't farm there because they don't want spending a lot of time killing the mobs to get to the veins. Rogues can stealth around mobs and knock out nearby mobs.

Worthy of note

  • MoP having a mining pick in your inventory (does not need to be equipped) adds +10 to the player's mining skill.

Until Patch 5.0.4, a mining pick was required to be in the player's inventory or equipped to mine nodes in-game. It is no longer required, but provides a passive bonus to your mining skill.

Mining Skill and its Increase

Different veins will require different mining skill levels to loot (e.g. Mithril veins require a skill of 175). The relative difficulty of the mining attempt is color coded as all other crafting and gathering professions:

  • Red: Skill insufficient.
  • Orange: 100% chance of increasing skill level.
  • Yellow: 75% chance of increasing skill level.
  • Green: <50% chance of increasing skill level.
  • Gray: Never increases skill level.

Although the same colors are used as for other professions, the actual odds of getting a skill point are considerably higher than the color would indicate. For example, at skill 60, a copper vein will appear green but have a ~80% chance of giving a you a skill point. In general, if a node is of the highest-level type of ore you can mine (not counting rare veins like silver or gold), there is a very high chance you will gain a skill point.

To mine a vein, right-click on it. After a brief animation, a loot box containing ore, stone and sometimes rare drops like gems or motes. Nodes that are orange or yellow in difficulty will likely skill your mining ability, so it is important to focus on these nodes when you are leveling this profession.

Prior to Patch 3.0.8, mining a node completely required multiple attempts, one for each unit of ore. As such, each node could yield a one point of skill increase per miner. This would allow several players in a raid or group to mine the same node for a skill-up. Since that patch, a single mining attempt extracts all available loot from the vein. Alternatively, miners can share a node for a skill-up by not looting the vein. This allowed multiple miners to gain a skill point (or tap) a vein, but only one miner will receive all the ore. This again changed in patch 4.0.1, prior to the launch of Cataclysm; Ore nodes (indeed, any Herb nodes or skinnable corpses) can now only be tapped by one player at a time. If a player attempts to mine it while another player is, the player receives the error "This object is already tapped".

Smelting provides an opportunity to level mining at a faster pace. Smelting large stores of collected ore can be smelted en masse and in large quantities. Since patch 3.0.8, it has been possible to level from 1-375 only via smelting, but this is expensive, since at certain skill ranges there is a very low chance of gaining a skill point.

There are rare spawns of various ore veins in place of more common metals. Specifically:

Tin can spawn Silver.
Iron can spawn Gold.
Mithril can spawn Truesilver.
Fel Iron and Adamantite can spawn Khorium.
Saronite can spawn Titanium.
Elementium can spawn Pyrite.
Ghost Iron can spawn Trillium.

These vein types are visually distinct from normal veins. They typically have a glossier, shinier model than normal ore veins.

Additionally, certain ore nodes have Rich nodes that can spawn in higher-level locations. The following ore can be found in Normal and Rich veins:

 [Thorium Ore]
 [Adamantite Ore]
 [Cobalt Ore]
 [Saronite Ore]
 [Obsidium Ore]
 [Elementium Ore]
 [Pyrite Ore]
 [Ghost Iron Ore]
 [Kyparite]
 [Black Trillium Ore]
 [White Trillium Ore]
Mineral Vein Skill Color
Orange Yellow Green Gray
Copper Vein 1 25 50 100
Tin Vein 50 75 100 150
Silver Vein 65 85 110 160
Iron Vein 100 125 150 200
Gold Vein 115 130 165 215
Mithril Deposit 150 175 200 250
Truesilver Deposit 165 165 ? ?
Dark Iron Vein 165 165 ? ?
Small Thorium Vein 200 225 250 300
Rich Thorium Vein 215 240 265 315
Fel Iron VeinTBC 275 325 350 400
Adamantite VeinTBC 325 350 375 425
Rich Adamantite VeinTBC 350 375 400 450
Nethercite DepositTBC 350 375 390 400
Cobalt DepositWotLK 350 375 400 425
Khorium VeinTBC 375 400 425 -
Ancient Gem VeinTBC 375 - - -
Rich Cobalt DepositWotLK 375 400 425 450
Saronite DepositWotLK 400 425 450 500
Rich Saronite DepositWotLK 425 450 500 525
Obsidium DepositIcon Cataclysm 18x18.gif 425 450 475 -
Rich Obsidium DepositIcon Cataclysm 18x18.gif 450 475 500 -
Pure Saronite DepositWotLK 450 - - -
Titanium DepositWotLK 450 - - -
Elementium VeinIcon Cataclysm 18x18.gif 475 500 525 -
Rich Elementium VeinIcon Cataclysm 18x18.gif 500 525 - -
Ghost Iron DepositMoP 500 - - 600*
Pyrite DepositIcon Cataclysm 18x18.gif 525 - - -
Rich Pyrite DepositIcon Cataclysm 18x18.gif 525 - - -
Rich Ghost Iron DepositMoP 550 - - 600*
Kyparite DepositMoP 550 - - -
Rich Kyparite DepositMoP 575 - - -
Trillium VeinMoP 600 - - -
Rich Trillium VeinMoP 600 - - -
* - Shown here as 600, as they give experience to level 600, even though they showed grey much earlier

Mining Products

By Skill Level

See Mining proficiencies and Smelt proficiencies.

Quest Items

Former quest ores

Removed from game The subject of this section has been removed from World of Warcraft.

Quest ore is usually mined off special nodes, but can also drop off certain mobs in the same area. The ores cannot be smelted and are not "quest items" per se, so they can be traded or purchased off the AH.

Mining Bugs

  • Nodes have been known to respawn in rapid succession immediately after mining. This is much more common with nodes in Eastern Kingdoms and Kalimdor than in Outland or Northrend.
  • Occasionally, a node will appear on the minimap but be inaccessible.
If the node is a gray-yellow in the minimap, it is underground or above you.
If the node is solid yellow, but not visible, it is bugged and cannot be mined.
  • Rarely, certain nodes will not appear in the minimap but be harvestable in-game.  [Dark Iron Ore] is a good example of this.
  • Players standing on top of ore nodes will remain where they stand after the node is mined.

Patches and hotfixes

  • Hotfix (2016-07-26): "In Draenor, mining and herbalism nodes are no longer able to be looted by multiple people at once. (This hotfix requires server restarts.)"
  • MoP Patch 5.1.0 (2012-11-27): All mineral nodes will now despawn one minute after they are mined, even if items remain in them.
  • MoP Patch 5.0.4 (2012-08-28): Mining pick no longer required to mine nodes.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.2.0 (2011-06-28): The levels at which vanilla nodes may be mined has been decreased, substantially in some cases.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.0.3a (2010-11-23): The XP from Mining has been increased. Also, with the removal of Zul'Gurub, Hakkari Thorium Nodes are no longer available to players.
  • Cataclysm Patch 4.0.1 (2010-10-12): Mining gives XP. The higher level the character is, the less XP it will get.
  • WotLK Patch 3.3.3 (2010-03-23): [Titansteel Bar]: Creating this item no longer results in a 24 hour cooldown.
  • WotLK Patch 3.2.0 (2009-08-04): In addition to the normal requirements, mining deposits in Northrend now require a minimum character level of 65 to mine.
  • WotLK Patch 3.1.0 (2009-04-14): You can no longer fail when Mining, Herbing, and Skinning.
  • WotLK Patch 3.0.8 (2009-01-20): Mining veins and deposits no longer require multiple hits to receive all the ore. Players will receive around the same amount of ore, stone, and gems they would have received from multiple hits.
  • Patch 0.6 (2004-04-13):
    • Underground mines show up as gray on the minimap so you can tell them apart from above ground mines.
    • When underground, above ground mining nodes will not be visible.
    • You no longer need to face the mining node to gather the minerals.

References

See also

External links

For leveling guides please visit Tradeskill leveling guides