I love alts. My characters other than my main have for a long time been a driving force in keeping my interest in WoW. I keep a stable of max level alts to gear up or for crafting. I often won’t feel like running more than one heroic dungeon on the same character per day, but a heroic on a resto shaman doesn’t feel like the same heroic on a ret paladin. One of the great things about WoW is the sheer variety of stuff to do.
Some days I feel like accomplishing, or working towards, an “end” character goal. This might be something like farming heroics in hopes for best-in-slot pre-raid drops or gear from points to rep farming for epics or actual raiding. This is gearing up my toon with equipment that should last it a while and help my end goal of a character – being raid worthy. Other days I just want to accomplish something. There’s really no guarantee to pick up a specific drop from a dungeon and sometimes you’re just too many randoms or quest away from having enough points or rep to buy something nice. On these days, I might take up one of my leveling toons. Especially at lower levels, but even closing on level cap, it’s only a matter of time to get a few levels. With each level comes new talents or spells and can feel like a little accomplishment for the day. This is especially great after a run of bad luck on a max level toon.
Of course, one can’t forget crafting and playing the auction house. Sometimes I craft for the useful aspects, leveling jewelcrafting or enchanting to enhance my gear and help that end goal. Other times I craft, gather or just buy/sell for fun and profit. Playing the auction house is pretty much a game within a game for some of us. I like the challenge of finding a way, with the least effort possible, to turn less gold into more gold. So I hop on my bank alt, search for good deals, track some trends, and make bank. There was a few months during Wrath when raiding was slow and toons were leveled and geared that most of my play time turned into profit-making.
Mostly though, I love alts because they feel different. My paladin or warrior might just want to charge in and brute force things down, whereas I can PVP on my rogue and sneak around, jumping in only at the right moment to ensure an enemy death. My shaman or boomkin has an even different strategy, being a little more squishy than plate and being less hidden than a rogue, I have to control an enemy player or mob and burst them down before they get to me and do serious damage. Mastering (or at least improving in) multiple classes and specs is both fun in its own diversity and allows greater knowledge to use against them if I encounter them in PVP. I’d likely get tired if I was stuck with one toon that I’d already completely geared and solved the riddles of. My paladin main is great fun, but I’m glad I have a host of others to hop on when I want to try something just a little different.