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Posts with tag Wowinsiderfeatures

The Light and How to Swing It: The Tankadin for Dummies


I know a lot of you have asked for this, and I know I haven't been delivering on the tanking front, so here it is. Today, we focus solely on Paladin tanks, who in my very humble opinion make the absolute best tanks in the game. With dual specs looming on the horizon, many of you will be considering the Protection tree for the first time. Some of you might have been picking up the odd tanking piece here and there with your spare DKP or heroic drops that nobody else needs. This is good. Let's go over a few things that should help us know the tanking role a little better.

First off, today we'll focus on the basics. Veteran tanks won't need all this information, but you're all free to read and nitpick because, well, I'm your whipping boy. Ok, so, you want to tank? The good news is that ever since 3.0, Paladin tanks share pretty much all gear with the other plate-wearing tanks. No more of that silly Spell Power nonsense. You're looking at gear with Stamina, Strength, and all those tanking stats like Defense, Block Rating, etc. This means it's easier to gear up. Actually, you should probably think about gearing up now before dual specs roll around and that Holy Pally rolls on your Red Sword of Courage for his "other spec". For today, let's take a look at some attributes that contribute to our survivability.

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Filed under: Paladin, Analysis / Opinion, Guides, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: What dual specs mean for the class


So. Dual specs. More than any other class except, perhaps, for those freakish shapeshifting Druids, dual specs will have a great impact on Paladins. For one, it will save a lot of money on respec costs. I spend at least 600 Gold a week on respecs and re-glyphs, toggling back and forth between my raid and PvP specs. It also allows players to diversify their roles in a raid. At a glance, the feature has a lot of potential and should greatly improve the experience for all players regardless of class.

What do dual specs mean for this Paladins, anyway? For a hybrid class that can fill the three archetypal roles in the game, it means a lot. Healers can become tanks, tanks can become DPS, DPS can become healers... anything, really. It's simply a matter of toggling the proverbial switch both in the game and mindset. You can even bring PvE and PvP specs into the equation, expanding the Paladin's options considerably. When dual specs kick in with Patch 3.1 (fingers crossed), let's take a look at the delicious possibilities that open up for the class.

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

The OverAchiever: Master of Arathi Basin


It's the Arathi Basin Call to Arms holiday once again, and The OverAchiever is here to help guide you through the Master of Arathi Basin Achievement, which is required for the Battlemaster meta-Achievement. You should be playing quite a bit of Arathi Basin this weekend considering it's one of the most fun and balanced Battlegrounds, so why not grab some Achievements while you're at it? Speaking of Achievements, one of the requirements for I Pitied the Fool is to hop into Arathi Basin and visit the Blacksmith, so head over to a Battlemaster and queue up!

Arathi Basin Veteran

Win 100 games. Like all the Veteran Achievements, this is just a matter of time. The hardest part is slogging through all the losing games.
Difficulty: Moderate

Arathi Basin Perfection
Win 2000 to 0. In the one hundred games you're supposed to win with the previous Achievement, you're quite certain to have one of these. However, if you want a little strategy thrown in, the best tactic would be to send teams of five to the Lumber Mill, Blacksmith, and Mine, with one to tag the node nearest your spawn point and any team that finds no resistance to head straight to the Farm or Stables. Essentially, the idea is to prevent any flag from being captured, as all it takes is ten seconds for it to tick for 10. Because it takes ten seconds to tag a flag, that's ten seconds too late.
Difficulty: Moderate

Me and the Cappin' Makin' it Happen
Take 50 flags. This is easy, and again just a matter of time. It's quite possible to have a lot of flag tags in one game -- you're not required to capture the flag you've tagged for it to count for the Achievement. In a worst case scenario, simply be the first to take the nearest node (Farm or Stables) in fifty games.
Difficulty: Easy

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Guides, Battlegrounds, Achievements, The Overachiever

Are Death Knights autowin in PvP?


Here's a question I'm sure a lot of players have asked themselves when faced against those dreaded Death Knights. Critical QQ wrote an interesting post in his blog theorizing that the side with the most number of Death Knights will win. Think Ret Paladin during the first week or so of Patch 3.0. He posits that Death Knights are such a powerful PvP class that they tend to turn the tide of a battle. To a degree, it's actually true. The very first Arena Master was a Death Knight.

The blog post plays out several scenarios where Death Knights make a difference but doesn't get into too much detail. But the point he makes is clear, and some of you might have actually felt it whenever you played some Battlegrounds -- whichever side has the most Death Knights wins. I've never actually stopped to figure out the ratio of Death Knights in all my Battlegrounds games, but there's no question a Death Knight is a force to be reckoned with in PvP. But are they unbeatable?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Death Knight

The OverAchiever: Master of Strand of the Ancients


Every week The OverAchiever gives advice, walkthroughs and guides on completing your latest Achievement obsession.

The Battleground weekend is just about over, but here's a little guide to help players get Master of Strand of the Ancients, one of the requirements for the Battlemaster meta-Achievement. Because it's a new Battleground with no faction associated with it, obtaining this Achievement is relatively easier than the others. Games are guaranteed to end within twenty minutes or less, and players won't need to concern themselves with any reputation gains. Here's what players need to do:

Strand of the Ancients Veteran
Win 100 games. As with all the Battleground veteran Achievements, this is just a matter of time and takes little effort, but a lot of perseverance.
Difficulty: Moderate

Steady Hands

Disarm 5 Massive Seaforium Charges in a single battle. This necessitates that enemy players plant the explosives, which they don't always do. Some offense rely purely on the power of siege vehicles to break down gates. It is a two second channel to dismantle one, and is easily broken by any attack except periodic damage. Players must have a keen eye for the charges, which can be easily obfuscated by smoke and siege vehicle debris. Players must also disarm the charge themselves, so having to compete with teammates makes the Achievement much more difficult. Done on defense.
Difficulty: Hard

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Filed under: Guides, Battlegrounds, Achievements, The Overachiever

The economy of Honor


Honor is currently capped at 75,000, a legacy from The Burning Crusade when the most expensive Honor item was a little over half that number. There's a sensible rationale behind the Honor cap, which is in place to curb stockpiling of the currency for future, unreleased rewards. Honor as a currency, unlike badges or emblems, is the same across the board. Players can start accumulating Honor starting at Level 1, while players must be Level 70 to obtain Badges of Justice or Level 80 to collect Emblems of Heroism, Valor, and in Patch 3.1, Conquest.

This works to prevent players from purchasing on-level epics as soon as or even before they ding 80. At most a player can purchase one or two pieces before using up his or her Honor. Emblems work in reverse. It's impossible to obtain emblems below the appropriate level, but there is no upper limit to the number of emblems you can store. Unlike badge gear from The Burning Crusade, where higher tier items for more badges were made available later in the expansion, Blizzard has created different tiers of gear for different emblems. This means it's unlikely that there will be new items available for Emblems of Heroism or Valor.

This means you won't progress gearwise just doing the same thing over and over. In order to get better gear, players will need to raid. In contrast, because Honor is the single currency a singular currency across all levels for PvP gear, Blizzard is constrained as to how to limit accessibility to better gear. They do this by putting a ratings requirement on the best PvP items, requiring successful participation in Arena play. Arenas are to PvP are what raids are to PvE. It's not a perfect system, but it will do for now. But what happens when players reach the Honor cap and have every item they need or want?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Battlegrounds

Wrath 101: Darkmoon Cards


Now that that Silas Darkmoon and his merry bunch are in town -- well, if you'd like to call outside of desolate Shattrath your town -- it's a good time to take a look at the four new Darkmoon Cards that have come out in Wrath of the Lich King. The method of acquiring the cards, unlike in the past, is no longer as random as it used to be. The new darkmoon cards can be created through the Inscription spell Darkmoon Card of the North, which is learned from Grand Master Inscription Trainers at skill level 400.

It still isn't easy to get the right cards, of course, as each Darkmoon Card of the North can produce one of eight cards from four different decks. With a little patience and a lot of resources, it's possible to get the right cards or trade for them. Failing that, there's always the Auction House, which is still the most common way to complete a deck. You will also sometimes see entire decks for sale. Realm economies notwithstanding, the most expensive deck will be the infamous Nobles Deck. What is the this deck and what Darkmoon Card does it give? A look at all the new Darkmoon Cards in Wrath after the jump.

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Filed under: Items, Guides, Inscription

The Light and How to Swing It: It's good to be the king


It's a phenomenal time to be a Paladin these days. Let's face it, no matter how we spec, we're actually wanted all throughout Northrend. As Holy, we've got spots in parties, raids, and refreshingly even Arena teams of any bracket. As Retribution, we're actually sought after in groups and -- paired with the right teammates -- can actually shine in Arenas, too. Protection Paladins are just about the best tanks in the game right now, even in raids, what with all trash being AoE'd to kingdom come.

Patch 3.0.8 has a few changes that should boost us and balance us in some areas. One big change is how Divine Shield, Divine Protection, and Avenging Wrath cannot be used within 30 seconds of each other anymore, and the removal of Forbearance from Avenging Wrath once again. This reworks the quick fix post 3.0 where Retribution Paladins were devastating opponents with wings and a bubble. It wasn't the most elegant solution and hurt Paladin tanking about as much as it toned down Retribution dominance in PvP. With Patch 3.0.8, Paladin tanks can look forward to frontloading massive threat comfortable with the thought that Divine Protection is a mere thirty seconds away. Furthermore, Divine Protection no longer has a penalty, making it nearly identical to a Warrior's Shield Wall. That's right, Tankadins get even better.

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Filed under: Paladin, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Blood Pact: Patch 3.0.8 and the portent of good things


So the patch didn't go through this week. It's alright, though. I guess we can wait another week or so for Patch 3.0.8, which seems to be getting heftier as the weeks go by. It's a patch that promises to be a pretty good one for Warlocks, and even then it's not the complete change. Ghostcrawler has said they're looking at improving Warlock DPS and survivability in the future, which means we'll probably be in a rough spot until 3.0.8 or -- later down the line -- 3.1 hits.

Not excitingly, most of Patch 3.0.8 consists of bug fixes, so there won't be any major changes to gameplay or dramatic shifts in the way we do things. The biggest change is arguably in the way Ritual of Summoning works, which will save us Soul Shards the way Soulwells changed how we handed out candy. The new mechanic creates a sort of summoning object -- currently some sort of infernal flasher who opens up his cloak -- that works almost exactly like an instance summoning stone. This is great for raids, but not so hot for parties when you just want to summon one person. It has a cooldown of two minutes (down from the originally planned five).

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Filed under: Warlock, Analysis / Opinion, (Warlock) Blood Pact, Wrath of the Lich King

The Light and How to Swing It: Gearing up your Retribution Paladin for Hit


I know I was supposed to write a guide to gearing up for Haste, but some of you pointed out that Hit is way more important, particularly with the change to melee Haste in late Burning Crusade. You guys are absolutely right, as melee Haste no longer gives the same oomph in Wrath as it did back then. In fact, if we're looking at maximizing our DPS, it's important to actually land our hits. All that Strength isn't going to do jack if we miss our target.

So first things first. We make out Hit cap, which frees up our gems and enchants for the all-important Strength. At Level 80, every 32.8 Hit Rating gives us 1% Hit, which means that we'll need a total of about 262.4 to reach the cap or 8%. Raid bosses are considered to be Level 83, three levels above max level -- hence the skull, so we'll need 8%, or 3% above the 5% base chance to miss targets of the same level. Fortunately, there's a whole lot of +Hit DPS plate in Northrend that we won't struggle to hit that cap at all. Here's a quick guide to gearing up our Retribution Paladins for +Hit.

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Filed under: Paladin, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Guides, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Blood Pact: Warlocks taking a hit


Have you seen any Warlocks lately? For some reason, the only remnant of Warlocks that I see are the odd Demonic Circles scattered here and there in Dalaran. Otherwise, pretty much everybody's re-rolled the flavor-of-the-month Death Knight or a Retribution Paladin. Where's the love? As much as Warlocks are reputedly overpowered in PvP, exactly how a Warlock deals with Death Grip, Strangulate, and a string of crits from the Death Knight and his friends isn't exactly the kind of stuff that make PvP legends.

In fact, the way we're designed to deal damage in a slow, painful stream, Warlocks downright blow in PvP -- particularly Arenas -- right now. The king of Arenas today is burst damage, and instagibbing an opponent with a zerg is the order of the day. With very few players stacking the necessary Resilience, Arenas are dominated by players who have gear from heroic Naxxramas.

Out of all the cloth classes, Warlocks are the only one without a natural 'out' of a zerg save for the preparation-heavy Demonic Circle (which doesn't break a stun, by the way, and has a meager 40 yard range). Mages still have Ice Block, Blink, and the target-removing Mirror Image. Priests, more than ever, have higher survivability across the board, specially with Pain Suppression, Guardian Spirit, and Dispersion across three trees and a plethora of instant heals. This makes Warlocks Target #1 when it comes to a zerg train in Arenas. And it takes about 4 seconds for us to blow up.

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Filed under: Warlock, Analysis / Opinion, (Warlock) Blood Pact

The Art of War(craft): Wintergrasp


Now that you've familiarized yourselves with the zone and Wintergrasp gameplay, it's time to look at the strategies used in order to win. As you can probably guess, the strategies for offense and defense are somewhat different. Playing defense, you must play for the full 40 minutes in order to win while playing offense, you want to finish the game as quickly as possible. If the timer hits ten minutes and offense hasn't broken down the doors to the inner sanctum, it's in trouble.

Just like other Battlegrounds, organization goes a long way. Unlike other Battlegrounds, however, you won't automatically be grouped into a raid, so a lot of the time players will be looking to join a group when the battles start. As long as you know what you're supposed to do, you should be fine, though. The good thing about the zone is that the map will show you where battles are and where vehicle movement is taking place, so even if you're going solo, you'll have an idea of where to head for some action.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Guides, Wrath of the Lich King, The Art of War(craft) (PvP), Battlegrounds

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