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Cataclysm Class Changes: Holy paladin analysis

Apparently Christmas comes early in Irvine. Blizzard decided to share their notes for the paladin class a full two days ahead of time, which I have to say is a nice switch in tradition from their normal habit of pushing content back until "it's ready." While prot paladins are wondering what exactly Blizzard's plans are for their spec, ret paladins are worrying about losing their defensive capabilities that have been their go-to cooldowns in PvP play. The developers did however shine a light onto their plans for holy paladins in Cataclysm, revealing a bit of their design strategy.

Nethaera
Healing Hands (level 83): Healing Hands is a new healing spell. The paladin radiates heals from him or herself, almost like a Healing Stream Totem. It has a short range, but a long enough duration that the paladin can cast other heals while Healing Hands remains active. 15-second cooldown. 6-second duration.

The big reveal came in the form of Healing Hands, the future addition to our healing toolbox. While it satisfies a few of my requirements, such as having an AoE effect and being on a relatively short cooldown, there are still a lot of questions about exactly how powerful HH will be and how tiny the radius actually is. Either way, we've finally got something we can cast when our group is taking AoE damage, and that has me hopeful that we may finally escape the bonds of full-time tank healers. The power of this ability remains to be seen, but I'm glad that Blizzard knows what we lack and they're working to fix that.

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Filed under: Paladin, Cataclysm

Insider Trader: Blacksmith and Jewelcrafting


We talked a few weeks ago about the ability bonuses exclusive to each profession. The idea behind this, of course, is that the majority of these bonuses are relatively equal to one another. If you're a master of your profession, you can expect to receive about 80 Attack Power or 47 Spell Power. You could also pick up an additional 60 Stamina if you're an Enchanter or a Miner.

These are the most common bonuses available to all the professions. However, there are a lot more stats in the game than just Spell Power, Attack Power, and Stamina. (Although, it's a fairly reasonable argument that these are three "sexiest" stats in the game, since they tend to be the centerpiece of many e-peen arguments.)

Especially when you're coming up in the ranks as a new character, there are other stats that are even more important. For example, Hit Rating is frequently regarded as a must have stat. If you're not at the appropriate hit cap for your class, you can never achieve your maximum damage.

This is one of the ways Blacksmithing and Jewelcrafting really shine. These two stats have the ability to laser-focus manage exactly how your crafting bonus will buff your character. Let's take a look behind the cut and start breaking down these two crafting abilities.

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Filed under: Blacksmithing, Analysis / Opinion, Jewelcrafting, Insider Trader (Professions)

Crafted Death Knight tanking weapons removed from PTR

One of the initial changes in patch 3.0.8 was the inclusion of Death Knight tanking weapons that could be crafted by a high level Blacksmith. As of the latest 3.0.8 PTR update, these have been removed. And all indication is that they'll stay removed.

Ghostcrawler doesn't want Death Knights to hang onto the weapons throughout their time in Wrath of the Lich King, which is apparently what Blizzard is afraid will happen. The other issue with providing 2H tanking weapons was that Blizzard would have needed to start itemizing (putting tanking stats on and crafting gear for) 2H tanking weapons overall, and that's something they didn't want to do.

The Ghost also points out that the new sigil and runeforge enchant should be enough to get the Death Knight defense up to where it needs to be.

Filed under: Blacksmithing, Patches, News items, Death Knight

The latest blacksmithing patterns from Wrath

Blacksmiths received a happy surprise in the latest beta build that launched tonight in the form of a bunch of new craftable gear, including the ability to add a socket slot to belts, bracers, and gloves and some nice new epic items. So far, we're seeing epic helms and boots of three different playstyles:
The epic weapon options also have good variety, though they're missing an obvious tanking weapon. There's the Titansteel Bonecrusher (a one-hander with stamina and AP), the Titansteel Guardian (a level 80 spell power weapon with less spell power than what I'm wielding at level 70 -- open to guesses on who Blizzard expects to use this one), and the Titansteel Destroyer (the two-hander every Death Knight wants).

That's all the epics, but if you want to see all of the recent additions, check them out in our blacksmithing gallery!


Filed under: Blacksmithing, Galleries, Wrath of the Lich King

PTR notes: get your epic BoEs crafted now



Wow, I sure am glad I came across this in my internet travels yesterday, since I seem to have missed it in the patch notes. But there it is: when 2.1 goes live, "The Epic bind on equip Blacksmith weapon recipes now require more materials to make." How much more, you ask? The image above (via World of Raids) shows the new recipes. Here's how they compare to the old:
Guess I better get a move on farming the mights for my Hand of Eternity. The price impact of this change will vary depending on the crafters you know, but based on the rates I've seen should be a few hundred gold. Fortunately, it doesn't look like the patch is going up today, so we have at least a week to get our mats together.

Filed under: Blacksmithing, Patches, Items, Tips

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