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4-30-2010 @ 4:41PM
Tyler,You're making a lot of assumptions in your analysis that might not be true, we simply don't have enough information yet (as you acknowledge at the end). I realize that you acknowledged head-on that you're guessing here, so please don't take this as QQ or mean-spirited criticism, more that I'd like to know your thoughts. I'm not sure why you think that the ultimate max-dps use of eclipse will be for us to try and hover at near max solar or max lunar. This actually seems like the least likely way eclipse will work. What's the name of our spec? Balance. The idea that we'll be hovering on one end or the other just doesn't pass the smell test when you consider that the entire purpose of eclipse is to alternate between the different spell schools. I'm expecting something where using the benefits of one side of the balance will use up that bonus and push you into wanting to build the opposite side's buff. That also prevents the ultimate downfall of eclipse that you didn't mention: RNG influence on eclipse and, thus, our dps. I can't tell you how many times I've cursed the Blizzard gods when a lunar eclipse runs out just as heroism/bloodlust is cast. D*MN YOU HASTE SOFT CAP!! If we use it up as spells from a school are cast, eclipse is on our terms and the problem is solved.I also think it's quite possible they make Nature's Torrent an instant-cast nuke, because it has a semi-long cooldown and one of our major downfalls in is our lack of burst dps (our raison d'etre) while casting on the run. Thanks for the great column.- Dreslav (A-Crushridge US)
4-30-2010 @ 5:00PM
In theory, yes, balance druids would want to switch between both sides of the spectrum, it's just that the base system doesn't support that fact unless something artificially influences it. Going from one end of the spectrum and then swinging to the opposite end of the spectrum would end up with the getting fewer buffed casts off and more casts off with a lower buff (assuming that the variable of the buff depends on how far over to one end of the scale you are.) For this reason, you would hover at one end or the other in order to maximize the number of casts you get with a bonus and the potency of the bonus. Conversely, there are other alternatives. If the buff if flat - meaning that you get the same buff value no matter how far along on one side that you are - then the balance druid would merely hang around the middle of the spectrum, but still do the same thing. Without some specific interaction from Nature's Torrent, the basic system of Eclipse, as far as we know it anyway, just doesn't support a cast style where you actually switch from one side or the other. However the system works out and how Nature's Torrent influences Eclipse is obviously going to be the major factor in how our rotation ends up turning out, and it is true that we lack any real solid information on any of this. The only thing we do know is that the current RNG of Eclipse is gone. We will, potentially, still have some Eclipse RNG to a degree in so much as how far a spell is capable of pushing the bar, but it won't be anything compared to how it is today.Nature's Torrent probably won't be our answer to movement DPS, it looks more like that will be Wild Mushroom. Wild Mushroom is instant, so it can already be used on the move, it also doesn't have a cooldown, so it can be spammed endlessly. Blizzard has said that a druid will be able to force the mushroom to explode when they want it to which is most likely to be done by casting the spell again (and there being a limit of only one mushroom active at a time.) So, you could merely spam Wild Mushroom on the go. Obviously it won't be great DPS, but it will be better than nothing. WM is an AoE attack that Blizzard has said will find a way into our single target rotation. Without a cooldown or the like, the only real feasible way that this is possible without the ability merely dealing more damage than Wrath or Starfire is for it to be our movement spell (unless there is some other new talent that they add which can fix this (such as the explosion adds on a hefty DoT or debuff of some form.))
4-30-2010 @ 5:25PM
I can still dream of having nature's torrent as an instant-cast spell!
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