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Posts with tag defense

Three needed changes to the death knight leveling experience

Lichborne 3 needed changes to the death knight leveling experience
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Lichborne for blood, frost, and unholy death knights. In the post-Cataclysm era, death knights are no longer the new kids on the block. Let's show the other classes how a hero class gets things done.

So With patch 5.3 not holding much in the way of new content for me, I've been spending my new found free time leveling a brewmastery monk. I must say, it's been a blast. Certainly, I didn't get my entire toolkit at level 10, but I got enough to get by, and as I've leveled almost exclusively by tanking dungeons, I've almost never felt that I was missing something essential to my job.

By contrast, leveling a new death knight in early Mists in order to update and rewrite leveling guides, my experience was different by leaps and bounds. Depending on your spec, a new death knight could be missing vital, near-mandatory pieces of their toolkit for 20 levels. I know I'm not alone in seeing an issue with this, and in fact this column was in part inspired by Magdalena (who just got a namesake item in game) pointing it out twitter this morning.

With that in mind, today I'm going to make a couple suggestions on slight tweaks to the death knight leveling experience to make sure new faces to the class have a smooth leveling experience that properly equips them for the end game.

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Filed under: Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Blood Sport: Finding your PVP playstyle in arena

Want to crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentation of their women? C. Christian Moore, multiple rank 1 Gladiator, examines the latest arena strategy, trends, compositions and more in Blood Sport.

I've found one of the most common excuses for not having an arena team is conflicting playstyles with past teammates. While often times these excuses are not really the problem (far too many arena players are self-centered and unreceptive to criticism), playstyle differences can be a factor in not meshing well with certain players.

I'd like to provide you with a few common playstyle differences, my take on which side of the spectrum is generally more popular, which side is generally better, and what I tend toward.

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

Blood Sport: Staying offensive on the defensive

Want to crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentation of their women? C. Christian Moore, multiple rank 1 Gladiator, examines the latest arena strategy, trends, compositions and more in Blood Sport.

We'll be taking a detour from our guide on how to make a new character for PvP to discuss something a bit different today. I get questions from time to time about a variety of PvP-related issues. I mean, I'm verbose, but I didn't think I could write over 1,000 words on one question, until Veni recently asked:

C. Christian,

You say that you are at your best when you are being focused in arena, and you barely let your damage slip.

I play a frost mage, and have only enjoyed success up to around 2k arena rating, and one of the areas I feel weak on, is sustaining damage when being focused. I consider myself to be very strong positionally, and mechanically.

Does the ability to sustain damage and remain strong while being focused yourself come from a great knowledge of your oppenents abilities? when you can and cannot get away with that extra cast? or exceptional communication with teammates, knowing when they are going to peel, allowing you to squeeze in an extra nuke.

Regards, a weekly reader

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

Blizzard responds to feral druid Savage Defense concerns

Savage Defense, the tanking feral druid's absorption mechanic, is undergoing some changes in patch 4.1 to ramp up its effectiveness to be on par with the mitigation mechanics of other tanks. Forum blue Daxxarri responded to one player's concern that the new implementation of Savage Defense isn't working out so hot. The response discusses client latency, the appearance of shields working or not, and how the combat log displays certain types of information.

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Filed under: Druid

Cataclysm: Reaching uncrittable

For those of you who don't know much about tanking, we're going to talk quickly about a stat that won't exist in Cataclysm. This lowly stat is called defense rating, and it's something that tanks need quite a bit of. The nice thing is that it's on just about everything that tanks wear, which means at higher gear levels, we've got it coming out of our ears. The primary point of this stat is to reduce the critical strike ability for incoming melee hits from the standard of 6% to 0%. Druids currently don't need this stat, as they've got a talent called Survival of the Fittest, which means that bosses don't need to drop defense leather.

All in all, the stat is kinda boring, as while it does still do nice things after you reach the defense cap of 690 rating (or 540 skill), most people don't bother with it and stack stamina or other avoidance. So Blizzard decided that they're going to get rid of it.

Around BlizzCon 2009, we were told that the crit reduction we formerly got from defense rating was going to be tied into things that were available to all members of each tanking class. Examples used were baking it into Bear Form for druids, Righteous Fury for paladins, Defensive Stance for warriors and Frost Presence (or rather, Blood Presence in Cataclysm) for death knights. That means that if a retribution paladin or arms warrior wanted to tank, all he'd need to do was swap to vaguely appropriate gear (or just over to a sword and shield), pop his respective abilities, and away he'd go. That's not how it appears things went down, though.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Death Knight

Wintergrasp defense / offense on unbalanced realms

Blizzard released a rather cryptic statement this morning concerning the offensive and defensive mechanics of Wintergrasp. Their entire statement is after the break, but it essentially comes down to the fact that there are some realms where one faction controls Wintergrasp nearly the entire time, and Blizzard has now shed some light on mechanics in place to correct this.

The faction hording of Wintergrasp happens particularly often on unbalanced realms. Because the faction imbalance can be so extreme in some cases, the smaller population faction has virtually no chance at winning back the Wintergrasp fortress and obtaining the heirlooms and PvP items, nor any chance at accessing the VoA bosses. This can cause frustration on the part of players in the smaller faction.

In this mechanic, which we presume is live, Wintergrasp zone mechanics will make it easier for the offense to gain access to siege vehicles if the opposing faction holds Wintergrasp more often. Blizzard is not specifying how long the opposing faction must defend Wintergrasp for the the offense to receive these significant buffs, but one can assume there is some sort of threshold.

The full Blizzard statement after the break.

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Filed under: Patches, News items, PvP

Advancing the battlegrounds

With all of the hubbub around the new LFG interface coming in patch 3.3, we haven't done much thinking lately about that other form of group play in the game, battleground PvP. But Cassandri at HoTs and DoTs has, and she has some interesting insight about what players are doing in the battlegrounds and why. She notes that some people dive off on their own, like Lone Rangers. And she hints that maybe, if these people were so persuaded, things would go better if they fought together, rather than on their own.

An interesting thought, for sure, and probably true -- while there are situations where I aim to be by myself in the battlegrounds (if I'm on my rogue and just want to hunt down some clothies), things almost always go better in there when you work as a team. So here's an idea: why not take the rewards implemented in the LFG system and apply them to better behavior in the battlegrounds?

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Quests, Making money, Battlegrounds

The Daily Quest: Goodnight, sweet prince


We here at WoW.com are on a Daily Quest to bring you interesting, informative and entertaining WoW-related links from around the blogosphere.

Filed under: The Daily Quest

Patch 3.3 PTR: Death Knight patch notes and undocumented changes


Given the massive amounts of death knight changes in the last few patches, Patch 3.3 almost feels like a drought. Of course, that may be good news if you're a bit tired of adjusting your rotations and glyphs every patch. Then again, don't rest yet. Sure, there's only a few changes to Death Knights (so far), but they're big enough that they deserve some discussion. Let's look at them one by one.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Talents, Buffs, Enchants, Death Knight

Lichborne: What Cataclysm might mean for Death Knights

Worgen Death Knight concept fanart
Welcome to Lichborne, the Death Knight column that dares ask the hard-hitting questions of Blizzard. Questions such as: Can I make a Worgen Death Knight now? Pretty please with sugar on top?


We've now had about a week and a half to digest all the new information from BlizzCon about the Cataclysm, and while it's not a complete picture of what we can expect from the expansion, there's enough information now that we can make some pretty good educated guesses about the direction of the game and the new theorycraft of being a Death Knight. Let's take a look at we can learn from the latest information.

New Races


The new races definitely have some pretty awesome racials. The Worgen's plus damage racial will make them a very solid choice for a DPS Death Knight, and the sprint will be excellent for closing distance in PvP, especially when paired with Lichborne or Icebound Fortitude to avoid CC. Even the skinning racial will be nice for a leveling Death Knight who decides to take some time out to level the money making gathering tradeskills.

Goblins are definitely going to be a nice little convenient race, with low buy and sell prices and a free bit of banking. Combat-wise, the Rocket Boots should be nice for closing distances or running away.

As far as whether these races will end up being the "best" races for Death Knights, I don't think I can say. Part of this is because I think the idea of a "best race" is, to at least some degree, rather subjective, but also, the devs strongly hinted they'll take a look at everyone's racial abilities as they move into Cataclysm, so its certainly possible that other races will get some new or upgraded racials that will keep pace with the awesomeness that are the new races' racials.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Talents, Death Knight, (Death Knight) Lichborne, Cataclysm, Worgen, Goblin

BlizzCon 2009: The Future of Tanking

We tanks are apparently living in interesting times. Whether you're a Druid, Paladin, DK or Warrior tank, how you do your job is in for some serious changes. Itemization is about to take some serious twists and turns in Cataclysm, and stats we've come to depend upon simply won't exist anymore. What does this all mean for those of us who generally go about our game 'lives' keeping the ire of our enemies focused on us and away from the more fragile sorts?

With Attack Power on gear gone, and classes more directly gaining AP from stats (which to be fair is pretty much how most tanks do things now) and even more importantly, with Defense gone and all tanks gaining their critical strike removal from talents as Druids do now, we could very well be looking at the end of tanking gear entirely. It's possible, perhaps even likely that in Cataclysm your DK, Warrior or Paladin tank will wear the same gear (perhaps switching in a shield in the case of warriors/paladins) to tank as he or she does to DPS. For an idea of what this might look at, we can consult the current itemization of Druids with the Survival of the Fittest talent.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, News items, Expansions, Death Knight, Cataclysm

Breakfast Topic: Never Gonna

World of Warcraft does have a decent variety of things to do. Arenas, Battlegrounds, Soloing, Professions, 5-mans, raids, the list goes on. Some may focus singlemindedly on one or two aspects of the game, while others dabble a bit in most or even all of them. All this variety also ends up meaning that some people just won't like certain aspects of the game, and will generally shy away from doing them. This can also be true of classes, of talent trees, of playstyles, and all the rest. Of course, sometimes we swear we'll never do something in game, then do it anyway.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Breakfast Topics

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

Lichborne: PvE Gems for Death Knights

I know there's gems around here somewhere.
Welcome to Lichborne, your weekly dose of Death Knight discussion.

Now that we've covered most standard pemutations of gear gathering in past Lichborne columns, I figured this week would be a good time to start talking about taking the extra steps to really trick out your gear. This week, will focus on gems. Not only will this help you take your gear to the next level, but it gives me a good excuse to talk about some new discoveries and discussions going on as we try to figure out the best ways to squeeze the most DPS out of a Death Knight. So to start, let's talk about which statistics you'll want to focus on when you gem.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Jewelcrafting, Guides, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Phat Loot Phriday: Red Sword of Courage


Some call it the Sun Eater 2.0. We just call it badass.

Name: Red Sword of Courage (Wowhead, Thottbot, Wowdigger)
Type: Epic Unique-equipped One-hand Sword
Damage/Speed: 160-299 / 1.60 (143.4 DPS)
Abilities:
  • +25 Strength, +58 Stamina
  • Increases defense rating by 38 and hit rating by 26.

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Filed under: Warrior, Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Humor, Phat Loot Phriday

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