Inscription Guide Revised – Levelling

Note: this post contains spoilers for Patch 3.0.

This is the second of a two-part guide to Inscription, the new tradeskill being introduced in Wrath of the Lich King.

Last Update: 10 October; WotLK beta build 9056.
If you have questions, feel free to contact me.

For the full list of Inscription recipes and the complete Inscription Guide, download the guide as a PDF file here: inscription12.pdf. (The full guide is in PDF form because frankly, it’s almost impossible to format all those tables as a blog post.)

Otherwise, read on for the “short” version!

If you’re coming late to the Inscription party you might want to read Part 1: Introduction of my Inscription guide, covering Scribe abilities, how glyphs work, where you’ll find trainers, and what Milling is.

Recipes and Discovery

Inscription Trainers will train Inscription recipes from 1-350 in 3.0.2 and up to 425 in Wrath of the Lich King. (The skill cap is 450.) There are no Inscription recipes known on any vendors yet, nor any recipe drops from mobs. All trainable Glyphs are Major Glyphs.

Minor Glyphs are learnt through discovery, similar to the Alchemy system introduced in The Burning Crusade. You can begin this process by learning Minor Inscription Research from the trainer at 75 skill; this makes random scrolls and gives you a high chance of discovering a new minor glyph.

Northrend trainers also teach a 385 Inscription recipe requiring level 75, Northrend Inscription Research. This recipe ‘compiles your experiences from the day, creating a random assortment of inscribed works. You are very likely to discover new major glyph recipes this way’.

Both Research recipes have a 20-hour cooldown.

Inks, Pigments, and the Herbs That Make Them

  • Ivory Ink: 1x Alabaster Pigment
  • Moonglow Ink: 2x Alabaster Pigment
  • Midnight Ink: 2x Dusky Pigment
  • Hunter’s Ink: 1x Verdant Pigment
  • Lion’s Ink: 2x Golden Pigment
  • Dawnstar Ink: 1x Burnt Pigment
  • Jadefire Ink: 2x Emerald Pigment
  • Royal Ink: 1x Indigo Pigment
  • Celestial Ink: 2x Violet Pigment
  • Fiery Ink: 1x Ruby Pigment
  • Shimmering Ink: 2x Silvery Pigment
  • Ink of the Sky: 1x Sapphire Pigment
  • Ethereal Ink: 2x Nether Pigment
  • Darkflame Ink: 1x Ebon Pigment
  • Ink of the Sea: 2x Azure Pigment
  • Snowfall Ink: 2x Icy Pigment + 2x Azure Pigment


  • Alabaster Pigment: Earthroot, Peacebloom, Silverleaf
  • Dusky & Verdant* Pigment: Briarthorn, Bruiseweed, Mageroyal, Stranglekelp, Swiftthistle
  • Golden & Burnt* Pigment: Grave Moss, Kingsblood, Liferoot, Wild Steelbloom
  • Emerald & Indigo* Pigment: Fadeleaf, Goldthorn, Khadgar’s Whisker, Wintersbite
  • Violet & Ruby* Pigment: Arthas’ Tears, Blindweed, Firebloom, Ghost Mushroom, Gromsblood, Purple Lotus, Sungrass
  • Silvery & Sapphire* Pigment: Dreamfoil, Golden Sansam, Icecap, Mountain Silversage, Plaguebloom
  • Nether & Ebon* Pigment: All Outland herbs
  • Azure & Icy* Pigment: All Northrend herbs

* – these pigments are uncommon milling results that may appear along with the normal pigment.

Averaged across all herb types (and based on over 1500 trials), milling 100 Herbs (5 at a time) is likely to produce about 54-55 pieces of the common pigment, and 6 or 7 pieces of the uncommon pigment (except Alabaster-level herbs, which don’t have an uncommon pigment). This may vary by pigment type and herb type, although I haven’t done enough tests to be sure yet.

Levelling Inscription

This is the levelling path I recommend.

Note: keep all inks you make, as you’ll need almost all of them (except the Darkflame Ink) for later skillups. Anything marked with a * is a component you should have made in a previous step.

1-18: Ivory Ink x17
– 17 Alabaster Pigment

19-35: Scroll of Int/Spi/Stam x17
– 17 Ivory Ink (from previous)

36-55: Moonglow Ink x25
– 50 Alabaster Pigment

56-75: Armor Vellum x20
– 20 Moonglow Ink (from previous)

76: Minor Inscription Research
– 1 Moonglow Ink (from previous)

77-80: Midnight Ink x25
– 50 Dusky Pigment

81-95: Any orange Glyphs x15
– 15 Midnight Ink (from previous)

96-100: Any orange Glyphs x5
– 10 Midnight Ink (from previous)

100-105: Lion’s Ink x79
– 58 Golden Pigment

106-120: Any orange Glyphs x15
– 15 Lion’s Ink (from previous)

121-145: Any orange Glyphs x25
– 50 Lion’s Ink (from previous)

146-150: Any yellow Glyphs x5+
– 10-14 Lion’s Ink (from previous)

151-155: Jadefire Ink x74
– 148 Emerald Pigment

156-175: Any orange Glyphs x20
– 20 Jadefire Ink (from previous)

176-195: Any orange Glyphs x20
– 40 Jadefire Ink (from previous)

196-200: Any yellow Glyphs x5+
– 10-14 Jadefire Ink (from previous)

201-205: Celestial Ink x74
– 148 Violet Pigment

206-215: Scroll of Recall II x10
– 10 Celestial Ink (from previous)

216-225: Any orange Glyphs x10
– 10 Celestial Ink (from previous)

226-245: Any orange Glyphs x20
– 40 Celestial Ink (from previous)

246-250: Any yellow Glyphs x5+
– 10-14 Celestial Ink (from previous)

251-255: Shimmering Ink x62
– 124 Silvery Pigment

256-260: Scroll of Spirit V x5
– 5 Shimmering Ink (from previous)

261-290: Any orange Glyphs x30
– 60 Shimmering Ink (from previous)

291-295: Any yellow Glyphs x5+
– 5-7 Shimmering Ink (from previous)

296-300: Any green Glyphs x20
– 20 Shimmering Ink (from previous)

301-305: Ethereal Ink x114
– 228 Nether Pigment

306-325: Any orange Glyphs x20
– 20 Ethereal Ink (from previous)

326-355: Any orange Glyphs x30
– 60 Celestial Ink (from previous)

356-360: Any yellow Glyphs x5+
– 10-14 Ethereal Ink (from previous)

361-365: Any green Glyphs x20
– 40 Ethereal Ink (from previous)


  • Note that 295-300 is a problem area; the only recipes which are orange up to 300 skill require Ethereal Ink, which you can’t make until 300 skill. The guide assumes you won’t use these recipes. If you have access to a more advanced Scribe you can ask them to make the Ink for you, which can save you a lot of Shimmering Ink.
  • There may be some occasions where you can capitalize on a cheaper recipe due to incorrect costs – for instance, among the glyphs that cost 2 inks each there’s the occasional glyph costing 1. I haven’t included these in the recommended path as I expect these errors to be fixed before Inscription goes live – but if they’re not, do make use of them!

There are some points where you can’t guarantee the best choice of what to make:

  • Do you make an orange item, or try and skill up on greens with a far smaller mats cost?
  • If you get lucky with rare pigments from your milling, you can get ‘free’ skill points from making items with the rare pigments and inks.

However, I’ve tried to take these factors into account wherever possible.

Finally, where the recommended path relies on yellow or green recipes to skill up, I’ve tried to allow enough materials to make sure you get the necessary skill points; however, I can’t guarantee the outcome of something random. I have generally assumed that 5 skillpoints requires ~7 combines for a yellow recipe, and ~20 combines for a green recipe.

Stopping at 365
Please note that this guide covers powerlevelling to 365, and not 375 or 450. This is due to the following factors:

  • The recipes learnt up to 350 skill will go grey at 3655 skill.
  • There are no recipes beyond 350 until you reach Northrend; levelling beyond 365 skill is not possible until WotLK is released.
  • Most people who use guides of this nature want to know what to stockpile before the profession is implemented, not what to gather in Northrend as they level.

Note that there’s no benefit to going past 350 skill until WotLK is released; if you’re not interested in maxing out your skill level just for the sake of it, you can halve the number of Outland herbs you need.

Picking Which Glyphs to Make
Note that there are no “higher level” versions of a Glyph available; each spell has one Major Glyph available. This means that almost every Glyph you make while you level may be useful even to high level characters; it’s not like grinding other professions where you make bagfuls of lowbie items that you’ll just wind up vendoring. Thus, when you have choices available about what to make, you may wish to consider:

  • which Glyphs you’ll want to use yourself
  • which Glyphs your guildmates or friends might need
  • which Glyphs are considered powerful/useful by high-level players of each class; these will sell well
  • which other items might be useful to stockpile for use or sale (such as the vellums for enchanters, which should be in fairly high demand)

A Final Caveat
Inscription is still in a state of flux! Until it goes live, there’s no guarantee that Blizzard won’t change all the recipes around tomorrow. This is a recommended levelling guide based on the PTR/beta build when it was written, with updates written in where possible, but as always there can be no guarantees that this will be entirely accurate when 3.0.2 goes live.

Shopping List

The bottom line: based on all of the above, here’s what you’ll need to level Inscription as high as possible when 3.0.2 goes live.

  • 150x Earthroot, Peacebloom, or Silverleaf
  • 100x Briarthorn, Bruiseweed, Mageroyal, Stranglekelp, or Swiftthistle
  • 285x Grave Moss, Kingsblood, Liferoot, or Wild Steelbloom
  • 270x Fadeleaf, Goldthorn, Khadgar’s Whisker, or Wintersbite
  • 270x Arthas’ Tears, Blindweed, Firebloom, Ghost Mushroom, Gromsblood, Purple Lotus, or Sungrass
  • 235x Dreamfoil, Golden Sansam, Icecap, Mountain Silversage, Plaguebloom
  • 490x Any Outland herbs

Note that this is a cost increase for every tier of herbs except the Earthroot tier (which remained the same) and the Dreamfoil tier (which now requires less herbs).

If you’re only going to 350 to get all the recipes, not maxing out your skill level, you can halve the number of Outland herbs you need.

Remember: the numbers required can be made up of any of those herbs. For instance, if you need 150 Earthroot, Peacebloom, or Silverleaf, you could have 45 Earthroot, 10 Peacebloom and 95 Silverleaf. Just make sure they’re in multiples of 5, as you can’t mill less than 5 of a herb.

51 thoughts on “Inscription Guide Revised – Levelling”

  1. With 3.1 around the corner, now is a good time to level inscription. The glyphs will be in higher demand once duel specs are released.

    I am stocking up on the mats to craft several, so I can be ready for the market upon the release

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