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Posts with tag 101

Blood Pact: Destruction 101

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "I love the smell of napalm in the morning... The smell, you know that gasoline smell, the whole hill. Smelled like... victory" ~ Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore

Destruction is often considered to be the 'mage-like' warlock spec; this is based on its more dwarven style of play (fight, drink, fight, drink...). It is true that destruction relies more on direct damage than DoTs or the damage done by minions, but don't be fooled, destro locks are not just emo-mages.

Where the other lock specs focus on shadow magic, destruction primarily makes use of fire spells. Incinerate takes the place of Shadow Bolt as a filler, and Conflagrate and Chaos Bolt are added to the spell book making a dazzling array of... well, destruction.

Destruction benefits

Destruction locks have the greatest 'burst' potential. This means that they can deliver a high level of DPS very quickly. This makes them ideal for short fights and swapping between multiple targets.

Destro locks are also very mana efficient -- not because they don't get through their mana (they certainly do!) but because they have so much mana restored through Improved Soul Leech.

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Filed under: Warlock, Raiding, (Warlock) Blood Pact

Spiritual Guidance: Discipline 101


Every Sunday Spiritual Guidance is liberated from the shadows by Dawn Moore, while Fox Van Allen is busy massaging the many tired tendrils of Alfonz, Dawn's loyal Shadowfiend. Dawn will reflect on the intricacies of priest healing for discipline and holy priests, while forwarding Fox's address to her gnomish allies.

It was sometime in early 2009 that I was sitting in Dalaran, reading trade chat when someone asked "can disco priests heal?" Someone replied "lol, disc priests?" to which the original poster said, "yeah, disc. Can they?" I smiled when I saw the mistake. Then a few months later when I applied to a guild, I filled in my spec and class as Disc(o) Priest. In response this, one of my future guildmates told me he expected the 70s to be in full revival during my trial: I provided. I might have gone overboard since, but I was born for this.

So here it is, Discipline 101. Just as was the case with the holy 101, this is not meant to be a comprehensive guide to every nuance of the discipline tree. Instead it will cover the basics of how to get started with gearing and playing a discipline priest in a PvE environment, and hopefully get you asking more questions that I'll be able to answer in future articles. If you are a veteran discipline priest please provide the newbies with any tips or tricks of your own in the comments.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

Blood Pact: Demonology 101

Blood Pact is your weekly warlock digest brought to you by Dominic Hobbs. "The time has come! Gul'dan, order your Warlocks to double their efforts! Moments from now, the gateway will open and your Horde will be unleashed on this ripe, unsuspecting world." ~ Medivh

You might think that you could always tell a demonology warlock on sight, its minions being bigger and more powerful, to reflect his greater dominion of demons. This isn't really the case though, every warlock's minions look the same irrespective of build. If they are over level 50 then they become easier to spot as you'll find that they'll have a felguard following them about. To be fair, he is bigger and more powerful than all the other minions.

If you're drawn to demonology so that you can summon a greater variety of demons, or maybe more exotic ones like those beastmastery hunters, then you're going to be somewhat disappointed. You'll have and use the same demons until you learn to summon the felguard then you'll have him. That said, the demonologist has an array of talents that really amplify your minion's power and also boosts your own by drawing on the power of your demon. If it is synergy with an embodiment of evil ripped from the nether that you are looking for, then this is the place for you.

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Filed under: Warlock, Raiding, (Warlock) Blood Pact

Arcane Brilliance: Frost 101

It's the weekend again, and that means it's time for another Arcane Brilliance, the weekly mage column that would like to continue its ongoing series of "Pictures of things you're hitting that warlock in the face with." In today's installment, we'll be hitting that warlock with a large chunk of ice. As you can see, the ice has sharp edges, pointy parts, and is hurtling toward the warlock at an absolutely painful rate of speed. Other things we'll be hitting that warlock in the face with in future installments include massive balls of flame, rapid-fire salvos of arcane energy, and of course monkey feces.

To contribute to the increasingly awesome collection of guides that make up WoW.com's class 101 series, I bring you Frost 101. As with the Arcane 101 column I did a few weeks back, let me begin with what this guide is, and also with what it is not:

What it is: A general overview of the spec from a PvE perspective, directed at relative newcomers to either level 80 or the spec in general. It will provide basic idea of where to start, how to spec, how to gear, and what to do as a frost mage.

What it is not: A guide to in-depth theorycrafting, detailed hard-mode raid strategies, min-maxing, which weapon kills Sparkman fastest, how to pull off an ultimate combo, or burn an entire quarter on one play with Bo Jackson. We'll cover all of those topics on some other day. Well, maybe not all of them. But definitely the Bo Jackson run, because that was crazy.

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Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

Scattered Shots: Marksman 101

Welcome to Scattered Shots, written by Frostheim of Warcraft Hunters Union and the Hunting Party Podcast. Each week Frostheim uses logic and science mixed with a few mugs of Dwarven Stout to look deep into the Hunter class.

Marksman was the original hunter raiding spec back in vanilla. After falling out of the top spot in BC and early Wrath, MM is back with a vengeance. MM is topping meters, punting gnomes, and kicking so much ass MM hunters have to use addons to take names of all the ass they can't get to just now, but will get around to kicking at their convenience.

The MM spec comes with the most versatile toolbox, the most controllable DPS cooldowns, two optimal raid specs, and the strongest AOE of the hunter specs. However, MM is also one of the trickiest hunter specs, relying more than other specs on proper use of cooldowns and good movement management.

Join me after the cut as we go through the nuts and bolts of the MM hunter spec and how you too can learn to punt gnomes and top meters.

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Filed under: Hunter, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

The Light and How to Swing It: Retribution 102

With the Light as his strength, Gregg Reece of The Light and How to Swing It faces down the demons of the Burning Legion, the undead of the Scourge, and helps with the puppet shows at the Argent Ren Faire up in Icecrown.

We're back again. I wasn't sure I'd be available to write the article this week as I've got a little paladin on the way and she's due any day now. The closest the doctor would give us was "soon." However, let's get down to business.

Last week we did a Retribution 101 article on what qualities make up a ret pally and what to expect from the spec. This week we're going to look at the basic talent spec as well as what our talents do for us. It's a fairly long post, so feel free to go grab something to drink now and then catch us after the break.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: Retribution 101

With the Light as his strength, Gregg Reece of The Light and How to Swing It faces down the demons of the Burning Legion, the undead of the Scourge, and helps with the puppet shows at the Argent Ren Faire up in Icecrown. This week, we're looking at retribution paladins.

Retribution. This is what every paladin begins as. No shield to hide behind. Just a big two-handed weapon slung on your back and grim determination as your guide. And, sadly, the spec that took the longest to become completely viable.

It's been a hard road for the retribution paladin. In classic era, you only used retribution to level up and then you were expected to heal or play blessing-bot for raids. In the days of Burning Crusade, retribution was a little better and could be okay if you stacked your raid the right way. However, they'd rather you be the adds tank or heal. Then Wrath hit and retribution came into its own... or should I say 'pwn' (bad joke, but absolutely true if you remember early Wrath). After some balancing, retuning, and all of those other euphamisms for 'nerf,' we're a still a fairly decent force along with the rest of the pack. Let's take a deeper look into the good, the bad, and the ugly of the ret pally.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Know Your Lore: Lore 101, part 1


One of the most frequent questions I'm asked as someone that's entirely too interested in Warcraft story and lore, is where to go to get story information. How, exactly, do you find all of these story elements when they are literally scattered across several different games, comics, manga and novels? How do you know what should be taken as official lore, and what to throw away as mere speculation? Where, exactly, does someone just starting out with World of Warcraft find story information when they've got no idea where that story actually starts?

It's a difficult question to answer, and you'll see why later in the article. The Warcraft storyline is made up of several different parts, spanning several different games, and the time line is continually changing and developing as these games are released. Here's a brief list of places you can go to get started:

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Filed under: Lore, Know your Lore

Totem Talk: Restoration 101


Want to be a sultan of swing healing? A champion of Chain Heal? Totem Talk: Restoration will show you how. Brought to you by Joe Perez, otherwise known as Lodur from World of Matticus and the For The Lore podcast.

If you're reading this, you've most likely decided that healing is going to be one of your two possible specs and you're looking for information before you jump right into healing. I can think of no better place to start my inaugural post of Totem Talk: Restoration than to provide the basics to get you started on the path of one of the strongest healing types in the game.

This is not the definitive Restoration guide this is just the basic overview, the more complex stuff will come later on.

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Shifting Perspectives: Bear 101

Every week, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them. This week, we rage against the dying of the light, the nearest raid boss, and the Gunship battle chest until it barfs up a Corpse Tongue Coin.

UPDATE: This article has now been updated for Cataclysm as of January 2011. Please go
here for the new Cataclysm bear 101 guide!

Titles rejected for inclusion in Shifting Perspectives this week: Editors: You tried to use that last week.
Allison: They still suck.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Balance 101




Every week, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them
. This week, we're preening our feathers, practicing our dance moves, and polishing up on our slaughtering skills.

There has recently been an in pouring of requests to make starter guides for all of the various classes and specs. Originally I refused such a topic on the standing that any player that wishes to play a balance druid is already 100 times more awesome than every other player out there and wouldn't possibly benefit from such a things. Then a guild mate of mine showed me the light. Balance druids themselves are quite an amazing bunch, but balance druid alts are a completely different story. In all honesty though, even the veteran balance druids cannot agree on talents from time to time. I figured, after a few threats of maiming, that a beginner's guide would actually be a really good thing; providing the caveat that some of the more controversial talents be explored more in-depth.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Arms 101


This week, The Care and Feeding of Warriors continues its look at the warrior specs with Arms 101. Matthew Rossi spends some time this week talking about that peculiar form of finesse that involves smashing things with a two handed weapon.

We've talked about protection, the tanking spec, and we've talked about fury, the Tasmanian Devil spec. This week, we're talking about arms. We defined fury last week as the spec for people who want to kill things, and that's fair, but if fury is that, what's arms? Well, fury is the 'kill it kill it kill it until it's dead and then kill it some more' spec, defined by Blizzard as the 'screaming barbarians in woad'. Arms, however, is the finesse spec. Yes, that's right, I'm defining the spec that relies on using a great whacking axe, polearm, sword or mace as 'finesse'. Welcome to the warrior class, where the fanciest Dan at the party is still a hulking madman in plate. As the class Q&A put it:
However, we would like to reinforce a little more the kits of Arms and Fury. Everyone (I hope) gets the difference between Frost and Fire mages. Arms is supposed to be about weapons and martial training and feel "soldierly." Fury is supposed to be about screaming barbarians in woad. You get a sense of that, but it could be stronger.
Indeed it could, and for my money, eventually will be, but that in a nutshell is arms. Fury is about grabbing anything big enough and beating on things until they're paste. Arms is about style, about finesse, about perfect control of your weapon, and about taking advantage of openings for huge, devastating blows that get around normal conventions and defenses. If you like the idea of being really, really good at hitting people with a sword the size of a barn door, then arms is for you.

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Filed under: Warrior, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors

Lichborne: Blood DPS 101


Welcome to Lichborne, your weekly look into the bloody business of being a death knight. This week, said business is especially bloody as we take a look at the most popular death knight tree.

According to recent armory analysis, blood is the most popular death knight spec. It's not hard to see why, it's a simple yet robust tree that provides lots of power with a minimum of fuss. If you're interested in getting in the DPS side of the tree but aren't sure where to start, or if you're just looking to brush up on the basics of the tree, this is the Lichborne for you. While this guide doesn't necessarily cover some of the more advanced aspects of the tree, it does covers the basic ways to get the most out of your gear, rotation, and spec as a blood DPSer.

1. What is blood DPS?

Blood is the death knight tree that focuses the most on pure physical damage. It also has superior health regeneration. Like all three trees, it can be used for both tanking and DPS, but we'll focus on DPS for this guide.

2. Blood DPS Benefits
  • Superior single target damage.
  • Superior self healing and health stealing abilities mean you probably die less and can survive through a less than stellar healer or tank more consistently than many other DPS.
  • Some very nice group and raid melee buffs in the form of Hysteria and Abomination's Might.
3. Blood DPS Drawbacks
  • Not quite as much AoE potential as the other two trees.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Shifting Perspectives: Cat 101

Every week, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them. This week, we are polite, professional, and have a plan to kill everyone we meet.

There's a bit of a gentlemen's wager going on here behind the scenes at WoW.com; the author of the weekly feature that gets the most hits by the end of the month will get cookies from Elizabeth Harper.

And I like cookies.

The following is a list of titles that were subsequently rejected by the editors for inclusion in this week's edition of Shifting Perspectives:

Shifting Perspectives: Naked women playing Cataclysm alpha.
Shifting Perspectives: Paladins suck.
Shifting Perspectives: Everyone should be nerfed but me.
Shifting Perspectives: Gear Score is amazing.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Spiritual Guidance: Holy 101


Every Sunday (and the occasional weekday) Spiritual Guidance offers holy and discipline priests advice on how to wield the holy light and groove to the disco night. Your hostess Dawn Moore will provide the music.

There is this priest trial in my guild right now. He applied as a discipline priest but what we were looking for at the time was a holy priest. Unfortunately, he doesn't know how to play holy, so I'm exploiting my veteran status and making him learn it. Coincidentally, the big bosses also want all of us here at WoW.com to work on these 101 columns, so this kills two anything-but-birds with one stone. I really like birds, by the way.

The following is meant to be an introductory guide to the priest holy tree. It is not going to tell you what to do step by step (at least not until you get to the enchants section) instead it intends to show you some options from which you can get started. If you're already a veteran holy priest, feel free to add anything I left out in the comments so readers who use this column as a resource can get as much help as possible.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance

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