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WWI '08 Panel: Druid (UPDATED)

While there isn't quite as much shocking news for those of us in the furry set as there was for our totem-spouting Earth brothers, there's still enough information to get us excited about our futures in Wrath of the Lich King.

I have to admit that I was a little surprised to hear Tom Chilton say in the first WWI dev panel that Blizzard isn't planning any Cyclone changes. When an audience member asked if there would be any alterations for Cyclone, Chilton answered in a pretty clear, unambiguous manner: Nope. But he did give us some explanation for it.Blizzard had entertained thoughts of removing the diminishing returns from Cyclone, to help provide Druids a little more utility in instances. But the large cast time of Cyclone compared to its duration meant a Druid would spend at least half its time in instances casting that spell, and only that spell.

In that light, they chose to provide Entangling Roots as a Druid's crowd control, even while in instances. By allowing Entangling Roots to cast even indoors, Druids will be able to contribute to the CC of a party or instance in a more meaningful way. I don't think this is going to make Arena druid detractors happy, since Cyclone is one of the reasons for Druid success in the Arena. But it will definitely give druids a paw-up in the PvE content.

There were also hints about Nourish, the new Druid heal spell that will have increased affect for each HoT already on the target. That one sounds like another powerful tool for PvE content, even if it's something that might turn into a bit of a problem for the Arena.

Also, as an indirect buff by way of Shaman changes, we have some pretty good news for our physical DPS: Windfury changes will now affect our feral attacks. How's that for a nice little boost to our capabilities? (The Windfury change will also apply to Rogue poisons, so everyone gets to share in this bit of love.)

Again, though, it's still pretty early to consider any of this written in stone. We've got quit a while before WotLK hits the shelves, and who knows what changes may come. Still, we'll keep you updated with more information as we hear -- stay tuned to WoW Insider for your WWI coverage.

UPDATED: As mentioned in the Q&A panel,while Druids will probably not get unique, personalized skins any time soon, I got three words for you. DIRE CAT FORM. There were no details given, except that the "Dire Cat form" would have its own model. At the same time, Dire Bear form may also receive a separate model from the normal Bear form.

Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Wrath of the Lich King, Worldwide Invitational

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