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Posts with tag cataclysm-talents

Mists' talent system revamp: Hit or miss?

Now that it's been a while a look at Mists' talent system
We've had the new talent system now for eight months, and it's had time to settle in, so it seems that it's an appropriate time to see whether it has been a success in its objectives, to assess the pros and cons of the new system.

In case you forgot, Wrath of the Lich King featured 71 talent points, which were distributed over three trees, resulting in some entertaining builds, and no requirement to place the last talent in the tree. The Burning Crusade was similar, but with 10 fewer points, and slightly smaller trees as a result. By the time Cataclysm rolled around, adding an additional five levels, there was concern about this system being bloated, daunting, and unnecessarily complex. So, with Cataclysm came a simplification: 31-point talent trees. At the time, Zarhym explained the change as follows:

Zarhym
We'd rather have a simpler design with a lot of depth, than a complicated but shallow design. The goal for Cataclysm remains to remove a lot of the passive (or lame) talents, but we don't think that's possible with the current tree size. To resolve this, we're reducing each tree to 31-point talents.

Cata also added a requirement that you get to the end talent of your main tree before moving onto the next, effectively removing the hybrid builds that had occasionally surfaced. But that change clearly wasn't enough, as most readers of WoW Insider will recall, there was a further revamp at the start of Mists, moving to the current system. It was a far more drastic change, too, with the disappearance of the talent trees we'd grown used to seeing. But was it a change for the better?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion

Encrypted Text: A Cataclysm 101 guide for rogues

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Encrypted Text for assassination, combat and subtlety rogues. Chase Christian will be your guide to the world of shadows every Wednesday. Feel free to email me with any Cataclysm questions you have!

There was once a time where rogues were one of the worst soloing classes in the game. We have never had any tanking or healing abilities like the hybrid, and our fellow pure DPS classes have the advantage of ranged attacks. Rogues were simply wrecked by their enemies. While we had decent levels of dodge, our survivability depended entirely stunlocks to control our opponents. Against anything immune to stuns, we were pretty much worthless.

Times have changed. Rogues have reached levels of survivability that were previously fantasy. We remain the single best DPS class for toe-to-toe damage, and now we can actually last long enough to get the job done. Each of the three rogue specs has a purpose and a direction, and the title for top DPS spec is still up for grabs at level 85. Blizzard has already tweaked the mastery system for rogues several times to ensure that no spec is left behind. I'm looking forward to our bright future in Cataclysm.

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Filed under: Rogue, (Rogue) Encrypted Text

Totem Talk: A Cataclysm 101 guide to restoration shaman

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Totem Talk for elemental, enhancement and restoration shaman. 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 host of the BDTU: Lore edition podcast

To quote The Smashing Pumpkins, "Today is the greatest day I've ever known." Tuesday, Dec. 7 marks the release of the third World of Warcraft expansion, Cataclysm. Over the last several months, we've been talking about all the changes leading up to this expansion. We've covered new spells, changes to old spells, and everything in between.

If you remember, not too long ago, we did our series of everything you needed to know about each class. Restoration 101 was my first post here for Totem Talk. Today, we're going to round up all of the changes to restoration shaman that Cataclysm brings. The changes have already been implemented before Cataclysm was released, we have already had an opportunity to become familiar with them. We're also going to talk about what it is to be a restoration shaman and what you have to look forward to as you explore the world of Azeroth. Note that this is not a guide for the endgame content and is meant for beginners new to the game or just starting as restoration.

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk, Cataclysm

Totem Talk: Bringing your restoration shaman back for Cataclysm

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Totem Talk for elemental, enhancement and restoration shaman. 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 host of the BDTU: Lore edition podcast

Last week, we talked about the alchemical concoctions we can expect to see in Cataclysm both while leveling and at level 85. There were quite a few options, and I shared some of my own experiences with them in the hopes that it will help you as you go for max level.

With Cataclysm release in two weeks, a lot of people have been switching focus to the new content. More people still are returning to the game and being assaulted by all the changes. This week, I thought we could take a few moments and talk about what restoration shaman returning for Cataclysm will need to know. I've received many emails about this topic over the last few weeks and felt it was something that required some attention. Let's talk about how returning restoration shaman can ease their transition into this brave new world.

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Totem Talk: Cataclysm and patch 4.0.1 restoration questions answered

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 host of the BDTU: Lore edition podcast.

Even with an official release date finally announced for Cataclysm, we still have a beta going on in full swing and changes still happening, as is evident in the release of beta build 13117. There is still plenty to talk about and, most likely, still quite a bit that will change between now and when Deathwing breaks through The Maelstrom.

A couple of weeks ago, we talked about how our healing will change when the pre-Cataclysm patch 4.0.1 goes live, and last week, I talked to you about my first impressions about healing in heroics and dungeons in Cataclysm. Those posts generated quite a few questions. So as I like to do every so often, I'd like to take a minute or two to answer some of the more common questions I've been asked through email, comments and various other sources.

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Totem Talk: Cataclysm update and resto mail bag

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


Last week we talked a little bit about the mastery stat and how it is being implemented and what it will affect, as well as talking a little bit about how the developers are are looking at totems -- the highlight, of course, being comments from Ghostcrawler (Blizzard's lead systems designer) himself.

This last week though there was a new beta build released. Cataclysm build 12694 has hit, and with it, there have been quite a few changes that will affect restoration shaman. Various talents and spells have been moved, trimmed or otherwise adjusted. I'm certain you are wondering what new and exciting things were waiting for us.

This week I would like to take a look a these changes and give you my own impressions of them, after having tested them quite a bit. I also thought that this week we would take a look at some of the common questions I've been receiving in regards to playing a restoration shaman in the Cataclysm beta.

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Filed under: Shaman, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Spiritual Guidance: First impressions of shadow priesting in Cataclysm


Since watching Inception, your not-so-humble Spiritual Guidance counselors have been experimenting with dream states in an effort to better facilitate your uptake of priesting information. Since Dawn has yet to awaken from her Blunt Brainwasher-induced sleep, shadow priest Fox Van Allen will be taking over the Wednesday edition.

Rumor has it that my Light-respecting partner, Dawn Moore, spent a solid two weeks at Blizzard's headquarters pleading for a Cataclysm beta key. To get in their good graces, she plastered Renews on everyone who moved, cast a Greater Heal on a turkey sandwich and sang a Divine Hymn. She even tried buying them lunch at Jack in the Box. Nothing worked.

A few hours after Dawn left, your boy Fox Van Allen walked in, cast Mind Control and walked away with a beta key in about 16 seconds. I also stole the leftovers from the Jack in the Box lunch. Curly fries. Jumbo Jack. Diet Coke. That's just how I roll.

So, what's going on with shadow priests in the beta? What's going on with Cataclysm in general? To find out, I copied my shadow priest to the test server, created a new goblin priest and braced myself for shadow priesting 4.0. I came. I saw. I blew up bomb-throwing monkeys with Nitro-Potassium Bananas. Follow me after the break if you dare -- spoilers may be present, of course.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance, Cataclysm

Spiritual Guidance: Latest beta talent builds for priests

Each Sunday, Dawn Moore combines a bitterness for canned meat, the occasional groovy beat, and massacred references to classic literature into Spiritual Guidance, a healing guide for priests.

These days everybody is in the beta. Let me just tell you who. My mother is in the beta. My father is in the beta. My auntie is in the beta. My best friend is in the beta. My cat is in the beta. My goldfish is in the beta. My neighbor is in the beta. My postman is in the beta. I just wanna be -- Oh! Hi. Dawn turns down her music and folds her hands in her lap, Alistair Cooke style.

Another beta build is upon us, my friends. With it comes my obligatory recount and reflection for priests, paired with my even more obligatory, jading references to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.

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Filed under: Priest, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance, Cataclysm

Blood Sport: The PvP perspective on new talent trees


Want to crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentation of their women? Blood Sport investigates the entirety of all things arena for gladiators and challengers alike. C. Christian Moore, multiple rank 1 gladiator, examines the latest arena strategy, trends, compositions and more in WoW.com's arena column.

Listening Music: Death Cab's "I will possess your heart." Long intro version, because it's awesome.

Last Week: Want to hit some arena up before the Xpac, or just need some awesome leveling gear? Check out last week -- we go over how to gear up for PvP.

In case you missed it, here's what Blizzard has said about new talent trees and PvP:

Twitter Q&A
Q. Is your goal to not having to use a talent specialization solely for PvP? If so, please elaborate on how you plan to accomplish that?
A. This is almost impossible to "fix." With the nature of talents min/max will always be possible. That said, we're trying to move away from having purely PvP or purely PvE talents as much as possible, which will make the pure PvP specializations less painful to play in PvE and vice versa.
A #2. We are removing many of the PvP talents, as well as trying to make some of the PvP talents a little more useful for PvE (for example, a talent that currently procs on taking critical damage could instead proc on taking any damage, including AoE damage, as well). While we recognize that very competitive players might still want unique talent builds for PvP vs. PvE, the hope is that more players might be able to use the same specialization more often for multiple aspects of the game.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Blood Sport (Arena PvP)

Raid Rx: Healing talents trimmed

Every week, Raid Rx will help you quarterback your healers to victory! Your host is Matt Low, the grand pooh-bah of World of Matticus and a founder of No Stock UI, a WoW blog for all things UI-, macro- and addon-related.

First, I just want to say that members of my guild and I scored ourselves a set of drake mounts from Glory of the Icecrown Raider. Took a few weeks, but we managed to pull it off. Hard modes and other achievements are an excellent way to keep your healing in form!

Anyway, those experiences can come at a later time. Some big announcements this week about talents! Have you seen the new looks yet? They're by no means finalized. We're still months away from anything resembling completion. Many talents have been removed from the tree entirely.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Raid Rx (Raid Healing)

Cataclysm Beta: Shaman talent analysis

If you weren't aware that a new Cataclysm beta build went live this week with updated talent trees for all classes ... well ... surprise! Though we can certainly expect more changes as the beta progresses (read: don't panic), this is our first look at Blizzard's new talent philosophy, coming to a server near you with Cataclysm. Now enough of my rambling on and let's get to the talents: Matt Sampson, Rich Maloy and Joe Perez provide analysis for the changes of each shaman tree.

Filed under: Shaman, Analysis / Opinion, (Shaman) Totem Talk

Cataclysm Beta: Death knight talents and specializations

The huge, earthshaking 31-point talent overhaul has hit the Cataclysm beta servers, taking the death knight class to new ground, back to the old vanilla era of 31-point trees. It may be for this reason that Blizzard's specifically said that our trees are far from done. With that in my mind, the trees and specialization skills we see can and will change pretty extensively between now and release. That said, there's no harm and certainly some good to be had in sizing up the trees as they stand right now and seeing how they pan out.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Death Knight, Cataclysm

Cataclysm Beta: New talent trees for paladins

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 soon, an entire flight of black dragons.

Last night, Blizzard released the new talent tree system onto the beta realms for people to take a gander at and test out. Each class is at various stages of done-ness, with some needing pruning, others needing tuning and still others just need another iteration or two before truly being ready. Paladins fall into that last category, along with three other classes.

Here are a couple of excerpts from the beta patch notes, with bold added for emphasis:

Cataclysm Beta Patch Notes - Build 12479
While this is a first pass on all of the talent trees, death knight, druid, paladin, warlock, Arcane mage, and Assassination rogue trees are not as far along as other specializations.

...

Paladins
* We are in the process of overhauling many paladin talents, spells and abilities. Expect updates in upcoming patches.


Things like more healing abilities for holy, Holy Shield moving from a maintained ability to a tanking cooldown, and three new planned but unimplemented attack abilities for retribution are all in the pipeline, as well as a shakeup of the talents we've already been provided. So, without further ado, I present a first draft of the paladin talent trees.


The Light and How to Swing It tries to help Paladins cope with the dark times coming in Cataclysm. See the upcoming Paladin changes the expansion will bring. Wrath is coming to a close and the final showdown with the Lich King is here. With Cataclysm soon heating things up, will you be ready?

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

Cataclysm Beta: Warrior talents and specializations

The Cataclysm beta has dropped a new talent build, and with it we have both the new talent specializations as well as the new talent trees. As you can see from the screenshot above:
  • Arms warriors get Mortal Strike, Anger Management and Two-Handed Weapon Specialization for picking arms as their talent specialization.
  • Fury warriors get Bloodthirst, Dual Wielding, Dual Wield Specialization and Precision.
  • Protection warriors get Shield Slam, Vitality and Vengeance.
What this means is that each tree will have a rigorous, defined role, and only that tree will make use of certain key abilities. As an example, only fury warriors will be able to dual wield at all. No more arms and prot dual wielding of any kind.

In addition, we can now look directly at each talent tree with the new redesign and look at what you'll be spending those 31 points in. However, just because it's in this beta patch doesn't mean it will make it to live; we already know Impending Victory is not likely to survive.

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

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