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Posts with tag cat

Maelstrom Weapon, Predatory Instincts tooltips incorrect

I was browsing through Blizzard's updated patch notes for 3.0.2 today, and noticed that apparently two talents that have been patched in don't do what they say. Under "Known Issues," the notes list that the tooltips for the Enhancement Shaman talent Maelstrom Weapon and the Feral Druid talent Predatory Instincts are incorrect. I'll talk about them one at a time.

As far as Predatory Instincts goes, the patch notes say "The tooltip for Predatory Instincts is currently incorrect. This no longer works on Bear Form or Dire Bear Form and now reduces damage by 10/20/30%." I'm going to assume that it still just works on AoE, instead of reducing all damage taken by 10/20/30%, because that would be insanely OP, as much as I'd enjoy my cat form having plate-level mitigation. And I'm not actually surprised they took bear form off of it, because I'm told bear tanking was simply too good in the beta. It does mean there's no use taking it for tanking, though. More points for Infected Wounds or something, I suppose.

On to Maelstrom Weapon. This is actually something that was changed in the beta a while back, and the tooltip just took some time to get updated: Lava Burst is no longer affected by Maelstrom charges (this won't affect us for now, since the first rank of Lava Burst is at level 75). So it looks like you'll be limited to Lightning Bolt or Chain Lightning for your instant-cast damage spells, clearly a PvE nerf. Chase actually sees this as a buff for PvP, though - now you can Flame Shock, crit Lava Burst, and instant Lightning Bolt for some serious burst damage.

Filed under: Druid, Shaman, Patches

3.0.2 for Feral Druids

In a few hours, when the servers come back up, patch 3.0.2 is going to hit, and WoW will change drastically. Every tree is get revamped to a greater or lesser extent, and extended up to 51-point talents. The Feral tree changes, in my opinion, fall somewhere in the middle in terms of how radical of a shake-up they are.

The big change, philosophy-wise, is that we're going to be able to be main tanks or top-tier DPS, on par with the best warriors or rogues. The catch is that we won't be able to do it with the same spec; we can spec to be DPS or tank, and do as well as anyone at those rolls. We can still try to spec somewhere in the middle, but then we'll get back to our old "master of none" status. In my opinion, this is good news, especially considering we'll be getting dual-spec capabilities in 3.1 (the first post-Wrath content patch).

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Filed under: Druid, Patches

Furor buffed for 3.0.2

Do you guys remember yesterday, when I wrote about how the Druid talent Furor was altered to prevent powershifting? Well, if not, that's OK. Furor has just been rewritten again, and this time it has all I asked for and then some. The new Furor reads as follows (with 5/5 talent points in it):

Gives you 100% chance to gain 10 Rage when you shapeshift into Bear and Dire Bear Form, and you keep up to 100 of your Energy when you shapeshift into Cat Form, and increases your total Intellect while in Moonkin form by 10%.

Holy sweet monkeys, Druid fans. Not only is there now no penalty whatsoever for switching in and out of cat form, we get some added Moonkin utility for this already excellent talent. This is one of those days where I just want to hug the devs, all of them.

In case anyone is unclear about how this latest iteration of Furor works, here's a quick rundown (as I understand it). The game will now track your energy regeneration even when not in cat form, like it tracks your mana regen in feral forms now. When you shift back into cat, you'll have whatever amount of energy you would have had if you had just stayed in cat in the first place. Shift out to heal at 80 energy? You'll have 100 when you pop back in, 2 seconds later. Arrive at your destination and switch from flight into cat form? 100 energy to go mangle some faces.

Powershifting is still out, but this is way better for the soloing Druid, not to mention the Moonkin perks. There is some concern that this may be overpowered in PvP: what's to stop you from DPSing in cat till you're at 0 energy, then shifting to bear for 10 seconds to DPS that way, then back to cat? Well, nothing, as far as I know. However, keep in mind that this is still beta, and if ferals end up hideously overpowered in arenas, I'm sure they'll make changes as necessary.

Filed under: Druid, Patches, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

Scattered Shots: Pet talent trees in the Wrath Beta

Welcome to another edition of Scattered Shots, the other WoW Insider weekly Hunter column. Daniel Whitcomb is your guest host again this week.

So, we theorized about talented pets a bit quite a few installments of Scattered Shots ago, but now we have the actual trees live and testable on the Wrath Beta, and they seem to be firming up nicely. There's a few promised changes yet to come, such as the removal or lowering of focus costs on many major abilities and talents, and it's still very possible that Blizzard may make changes here and there before live, but I think they're solid enough at this point that we can look at each tree and make some solid predictions about how people will use them and how various talent builds might look.

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Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Expansions, Raiding, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

WWI '08 Panel: Hunters

The first WoW panel has come and gone at the Worldwide Invitational. It was focused on class abilities in WoTLK, and there was some absolutely juicy stuff, especially for Hunters. As the proud player of a 70 Hunter, I'm feeling amazingly awesome about my class right now. Two of the biggest, most universal Hunter complaints have not only been answered, but answered in a way that I think a lot of Hunter players are going to be incredibly excited about.

Steady Shot Clipping

First up, it looks like Shot Rotations as we know them will soon become a thing of the past, or at least be incredibly simplified, as Steady Shots will no longer clip Auto Shots. This is actually an issue that has gained some blue post love in the past, but it's nice to see it so directly confronted and dealt with.

There may still be a shot rotation of a type for fitting in Arcane Shot and various stings, but it looks like Hunter DPS will no longer be a complicated dance of weapon speed, haste rating, macros, and server latency. That in itself is amazing news.

Pet Talent Trees and Uniqueness

One of the other major complaints of Hunters is the lack of pet diversity. It is generally expected that if you are min-maxing, you will go for a Cat, Ravager, or Scorpid and nothing else, because they are the only pet families that have the right combination of ability and DPS to get their jobs done. Some pet classes, like Sporebats, languished due to a complete lack of useful family skills.

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Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Events, News items, Expansions, Talents, Buffs, Wrath of the Lich King, Worldwide Invitational

Resto4Life interviews Druid artist Andrige

I could have sworn that we interviewed Andrige here on WoW Insider, but I can't seem to find it in the archives, so I guess Resto4Life beat us to it. Phaelia has posted an interview with the artist (and machinimist) behind some of the best WoW fan art out there, and to the surprise of no one I'm sure, he seems like a fun, down to earth kind of guy.

He talks about his fascination with both the Horde and Druids, why he loves Feral, and what he's been up to lately -- he's planning to do a piece of the Night Elf bear and Tauren cat fighting each other, which should be awesome. He's also awaiting the art change in Wrath of the Lich King -- like a lot of players, he's tired of the sci fi and can't wait to get back into the old sword and sorcery style. He wouldn't turn down a job at Blizzard (who would?), but he humbly says that he's got a lot of work to do before he steps up to that level. Good for him. Finally, he shares some good advice about how to make machinima (the script for his film was actually written by a few people on IRC), and a few good ideas about Druid forms. A "Runic Wolf" -- I love it.

Nice interview, and good to hear from the guy behind the art.

Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Fan art

Scattered Shots: Why certain pet families are so popular

Scattered Shots is for Hunters. David Bowers is caught in a Freezing Trap this week, so Daniel Whitcomb -- who did not set the trap, he swears to the Light -- is substituting for him.

You hear it pretty much all the time if you've ever slightly dipped into the world of Hunters. If you want to play in the big leagues, conventional wisdom says you're pretty much stuck with a select handful of pet types (also known as pet families): Ravagers, Cats, and Raptors for PvE, Scorpids for PvP.

But do you know why those pet families are so desired? What it really comes down to is Hunter roles and abilities.

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Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Guides, Arena, (Hunter) Scattered Shots

What WoW should learn from certain quests in and around The Barrens

Lakotamani welcomes you to the beautiful Barrens!So I've been thinking a bit about questing lately as I traverse Outlands on my latest project, a level 61 Blood Elf Paladin, working on the Outlands quests. I think my favorite part of playing a lowbie hordeling is how many quests there are to "stumble upon" in the oft-maligned Barrens. Technically, they're all very basic "find and kill these dudes" quests, but the presentation is such that I always get a big rush from doing them. They really do make me feel like a mighty hunter.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Quests, Expansions, Lore, Leveling, RP

2.4.2 Hunter Changes: Aspect of the Viper, Growl, and the boar's last stand

So Growl has been having some problems since 2.4 went live. Pets refuse to cast it in the right order, which is wreaking havoc with Hunter aggro, especially on boar pets, who depend on a Charge/Growl combination to gain their fabled massive aggro. I myself have noticed that I have a lot harder time keeping aggro from my beloved boar Bonnie when I solo on my Hunter. So now on the PTR, we have some new lines in the latest update of the patch notes:

• Boar Charge: This ability will no longer make Growl cast immediately after it generates excessive threat.
• The pet ability Growl will no longer scale with pet Attack Power.

It should also be noted that Nethaera has said that Growl will now scale with Hunter AP instead of Pet AP, so there's no fear that it's become a non-scaling flat skill.

Now, this all sounds somewhat ominous, but what does it actually mean?

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Buffs

Breakfast Topic: Should Blizzard support Hunter pet diversity?

While looking over the new "fake" pet skills page at Petopia earlier today, one of the biggest things that struck me is that the whole Thorns skill that the temporary Crab pets get for the lowbie Hunter taming quests would be a great thing for normal Crab pets to get. Right now, They're stuck learning nothing but Claw, placing them right near the bottom of the pet pantheon - very close to Sporebats, who can't learn any special abilities at all.

My two high level Hunters tamed a Carrion Bird and a Boar, respectively, so I'm lucky enough to have a good selection of skills to use, but I think there should be more options for people who love their offbeat pets like Sporebats or Hyenas or Crocs. They can even use some of the old rumored alpha skills for pets that popped up around the time of Burning Crusade's alpha. I'm hoping that Blizzard shows more types of Hunter pets some love in WoTLK with a wide selection of new skills, be it thorny shells for Crabs, a Cannibalism-type skills for Raptors, or anything else that lets us see Hunters fighting alongside fewer Cats and Ravagers (or in the case of arenas, Scorpids).

What do you think? Should Blizzard focus a bit more on a wider variety of options for Hunter pets? Or should Hunters just take what they can get and be grateful for it? If the former, what types of new pet skills would you like to see?

Filed under: Hunter, Analysis / Opinion, Breakfast Topics

Shifting Perspectives: So, is Nurturing Instinct worth taking now?

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives is typically written by someone who is not Allie Robert. This week, she has Prowled onto John Patricelli's turf, Pounced him, and run off shouting, "Ha ha! I have your column and there's nothing you can do about it for the next un-talented 3 seconds!"

John's previously covered a number of the changes you can expect to see in the upcoming patch 2.4, but more recently we're heard of changes to the feral talent Nurturing Instinct. Currently the talent increases healing spells by up to 50% of your Strength. It's not such a bad bonus, but you'd be a rare feral indeed if you found a lot of leather gear with +Strength on it outside of the tier or arena sets. The vast majority of ferals continue to use specialized pieces like the Heavy Clefthoof set for bear tanking and mostly rogue gear for cat dps. Either way, the talent was of considerably less use than it might have been if more pieces like the Shadowprowler's Chestguard existed ingame (although the addition of badge gear has made it possible, albeit time-consuming, to get leather with "Druid stats"). Moreover, with the change to the Heart of the Wild talent in patch 2.3 (altering the full talent from a 20% increase to your Strength in cat form to a 10% increase to your AP in cat form), Strength became less important than ever. Take a tour through Emmerald's feral gear guide (updated to include 2.3 badge gear and - I hope - soon to be updated to include 2.4 badge gear) and you'll find that most of the best cat pieces are rogue leather with a ton of Agility.

Blizzard must have recognized that it didn't make much sense to keep Nurturing Instinct the way it was, so the talent has now been changed to increase your healing spells by 50%/100% of your Agility, and healing done to you by 10/20% of your AP in cat form. There still seems to be some confusion over how this change will play out, but the official PTR patch notes still say it's 10/20% of your AP in cat. While this will obviously depend a lot on how much attack power you're packing, this could be a considerable buff to your healing taken in cat form (approaching and, with AP increases, probably exceeding the average additional healing by a warlock's Fel Armor). Fully talented, this could mean an extra +400 healing done to you assuming you're at the druid boards' minimum standards of 2,000 AP and 30% crit in cat form for entry to Karazhan.

Still, Nurturing Instinct is problematic. Not because it's bad, exactly, but because it's one of those troublesome talents rife among hybrid talent trees that force you to ask what you really want to be playing that character for.

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Filed under: Night Elves, Tauren, Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Raiding, Talents, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Around Azeroth: Stalking the mighty Zhevra

The Tauren Druid stalks his prey in his natural habitat: the tall grassof the Barrens, into which he naturally blends. The Zhevra in the distance stands little chance against this predator, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. Though this is an excellent stalking shot, it's apparently not a memorable one -- as reader Matt sent this one in with the note that he couldn't remember which character or realm this image might have come from.

Do you collect screenshots of your character on the hunt? We want to hear your stories (and see them!) on Around Azeroth! Sharing your screenshot is as simple as e-mailing with a copy of your shot and a brief explanation of the scene. You could be featured here next!

Filed under: Screenshots, Around Azeroth

Shifting Perspectives: The forgotten feral form

Shifting Perspectives is the Druid column normally written by someone else other than Ryan Carter, but he is currently cutting his level 68 teeth on everything that moves, so he is filling in for your regularly scheduled Druids, who are on vacation in Nagrand and points beyond.

Moonkins, mongeese, and bears oh my! Is there a reason that everyone hates cats, or is it that no one likes them? As a Druid, I hear about Dire Bear tanks, I hear about those party-animals, the Moonkins dps-ing their way into the lime light, and of course those restro Druids, who hang out with healers. What about the feral kitty? Why does no one play them but me? Is it harder to be a cat, or is it just a misunderstood sub-class? Personally, I love playing the cat, since there are many advantages to this spec. Sure, bears, owlbeasts and trees are great, but since I am biased, let me explain what I consider to be the distinct advantages of playing a kitty.

First off, Prowl (stealth) is an extremely powerful tool in groups, solo, or in an instance. Rogues have this ability too, but putting 3 early talent points into Feral Instinct makes it even harder to detect you when roaming around (like a talent rogues have). Stealth is useful for recon, figuring out the best way to pull a difficult group in an instance or for doing things other classes can't even dream of doing, like soloing LBRS to get your own Smolderweb Hatchling or Worg Pup. I was a level too low to be running LBRS in daylight, yet was inside stealthing through LBRS to get my pets, all alone. Wanna be the talk of the town or do the impossible before it should be possible, roll a druid.

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Filed under: Night Elves, Tauren, Druid, Talents, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Tauren cat form updated a little in patch 2.3

We just talked about this issue in Shifting Perspectives a week ago, but it appears Blizzard is already doing something about the tauren cat form -- albeit not very much. Many tauren have long complained that their cat form is much uglier than the night elf version (compare for yourself here), and while these changes aren't comprehensive, at least they're a tiny step in a new direction.

Beaux on the US forums showed everyone how, in patch 2.3, Blizzard has modified the tauren cat form's face to look more like a lion and less like a monkey, and changed the neck of the lion so that it doesn't look so hunchbacked as it moves. It's not as pretty as the tauren cat form suggestion submitted in Blizzard's art contest, but it'll do for now I would think.

[Update]: Our reader tmklein supplied us with some interesting links for what the EU player Andrige thought the various forms should look like -- all with a distinct visual style. Would you like this sort of change?

Filed under: Druid, Patches

2.2 coming to the live realms tomorrow morning

By now, it's almost a certainty-- not only did the PTR shut down last week, but Neth has almost confirmed on the forums that patch 2.2 is coming tomorrow morning. That means, I guess, that Amanda was right on our podcast a few weeks ago-- she was the only one who predicted it would show up this week, so kudos to her. Of course, it also messes up my plans for the week, unfortunately. I was planning to snipe Brutes and capture flags at least through Thursday, but now I may have to punctuate that with some voice chatting.

And besides voice chatting, what else are we seeing in this new patch we've waited so long for? The full patch notes are here for now (though they may be replaced with the 2.2.2 notes in the next day or so). Anti-AFK measures are showing up, as well as the Haste rebalancing. And most of the class stuff seems like bugfixes more or less. If you're a Druid, it'll be good to know that you can attack from further away while in Cat form, Shaman ankhs will now stack to ten (nice!) and Hunters with Raptor pets can now go out and learn Dash, but otherwise, it's all bugfixes-- some more harsh than others (the Six Demon Bag no longer benefits from spell damage, so bummer for that one).

But the thing that will really pull me away from Halo 3 this week is probably the simplest. Finally, my Orc male shoulders are returned to full size. Finally, after more than two months, I can walk around Orgrimmar with my head held up proudly, trapped between two huge masses of metal. See you tomorrow, 2.2!

Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, PvP

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