Every Friday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting balance druids and those who group with them
. This week we are looking into the future, pondering what may be in store and learning a little bit about ourselves along the way. Talents are the in thing this week, so let's talk about 'em.
Many of you know whom I am; I am Tyler Caraway, also known as Murmurs, and I am a balance druid. I deal mostly in theorycrafting about how things work for us -- spells, rotations, talents and the like. I'm not the only one who does this, though. There are others such as Hamlet who do great work as well; however, probably one of the most well known public figures is a guy who goes by the name Graylo. If you don't know about Graylo, then I have to ask if you live under a rock -- but you probably also know of his blog, Graymatter
It is no surprise to those who happen to follow both Graylo and myself that we often don't happen to see eye to eye on many topics. Graylo is a brilliant man -- bloody brilliant, I must say -- and one of his more recent blogs is something that I would really like to discuss. Apologies to Graylo if I am stealing any of your thunder in this, but this does happen to be a topic that I am highly touchy about.
That topic, of course, is one of optional talents. With Cataclysm
, Blizzard is hoping to shake up the cookie-cutter mold by composing talent trees primarily out of talents that are not direct DPS increases in the strictest sense of the word. Right now, it is fairly easy to argue that a talent such as Nature's Reach
is excessively valuable within a talent build. Nothing about the talent actually increases the damage that you do, but the utility that it provides -- additional range and threat reduction -- hold an extremely large theoretical DPS gain. Having the capacity to not move as much to remain within range of a mob or the ability to output more damage before becoming threat-capped are essential parts of being a DPSer -- so essential, in fact, that every single caster class in the game has similar talents. It is these type of talents that Blizzard wishes for trees to be made of, but that means adding in a lot of additional utility to classes. How can we know what utility is actually useful, though? More importantly, does it even matter anymore?
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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives