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Posts with tag druid-pvp

Shifting Perspectives: The dual-specced Druid

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, in the interests of keeping our writer away from editors of the opposite faction on PvP servers, we examine dual specs.

Between lollygagging here at WoW Insider Central and engaging in some extracurricular indolence, I've often wondered where I'd take the column after finishing the bear pre-raid post. I could write something on how to theorycraft the highest-HPM tree, I thought, or get around to testing whether weapon skill has an unintended effect on bear threat. Look at the potential return from Eclipse procs as a function of fight mobility? Argue whether it's worth it to take Feral Aggression in a hybrid feral build? Or compose an entire column as a mockument to T.S. Eliot's most famous poem:

Q: Let us go then, you and I --

A: No.

All good ideas. But then we received the following missive from that enemy of all that is good and right in the publishing world, the editor:

MEMO: To all WoW Insider class columnists

FROM: You know who.

TEXT: Write something on how your class will deal with the upcoming dual-spec system in patch 3.1, or Dan "One-Eye" O'Halloran will "remember" where he left his whip.

"Well," I thought. "That sounds like a good idea too."

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Features, Raiding, Guides, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King

Shifting Perspectives: Patch 3.0.8 for Druids

Every Tuesday, or sometimes Friday when the writer's internet has gone AWOL between Sunday evening and Thursday afternoon, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week we take a look at the upcoming patch 3.0.8. while penning an angry letter to our ISP.

Greetings, folks. Patch 3.0.8 is coming, bringing a few significant changes for the Druid class. Feral attack power is disappearing from the game entirely alongside bonus armor contribution from non-leather items. Restoration is receiving a nerf in the form of a 6-second cooldown to Wild Growth but is otherwise getting some buffs. Balance is also getting a few buffs, including one that will make a big difference to PvP combat versus Rogues and Hunters. But I think, dear readers, we are overlooking the most important part of patch 3.0.8:

Fixed a bug with a Wild Mustard plant that was under the ground in Dalaran.


Oh, thank God. That drove me nuts.

(Really).

(I'd also love to see them do something about the underground Tiger Lily spawn in Sholazar).

(It's just south of River's Heart).

(Really annoying).

(Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?).

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Guides, Buffs, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King

Shifting Perspectives: The Druid of 2008


Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, our author is completely spaced out on cold medication, and is somewhat concerned that her raid performance has improved under the circumstances.

The time has come (the Allie said)
To talk of many things.
Of Roots and Bash and Travel Form,
And Strength (which scales with Kings).
Why Tauren cat form sucks so hard,
And whether trees have wings!

And, yes, before anyone asks, I'm tripping on too much cough syrup and ibuprofen after receiving a belated viral Christmas gift from a relative. So I'll just put this out there right now; this column's probably on the weird side. I took a long look at all three Druid specs over 2008 and saw a few sad things, a few happy things, a little song, a little dance, a little seltzer down your pants, and now I'm channeling the famous Mary Tyler Moore episode "Chuckles Bites the Dust," and that has to stop because I do not believe Mary Tyler Moore ever played a Druid.

If you're completely uninterested in reading an account of any spec that's not your own -- although that would make me weep into my little cup of generic label cough syrup -- here's a set of quick links to each:

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Humor, The Burning Crusade, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King

Shifting Perspectives: State of the class, part 1 - Balance


Every Tuesday, or possibly Thursday when the writer votes on Tuesday and spends Wednesday screaming and beating her laptop over formatting errors, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week Allison Robert steals John Patricelli's column once again, secure in the knowledge that she will never be forced to atone for her crime as long as she writes something nice about ferals and keeps a respectful distance from Dan O'Halloran's whip.

I hate Tauren cat form.

Good. I got that out of my system and can write something productive. Although, believe me, if I could get away with it, an entire Shifting Perspectives would be devoted to just how much I hate Tauren cat form. I mean, just look at it! Look at the angle on the horns! The cat can't bite anything! Christ, I just -- hi, Dan. Yes, I'm totally writing the column! Look at me go!

This week, mindful as always of American election-year politicking, I'm going to borrow a page from presidential duties and write a little something I like to call "State of the Class." Druids have undergone a number of changes in the transition to Wrath of the Lich King, and will acquire even more as they level to 80. We are one of Blizzard's primary targets for both gear and role consolidation, which raises a few questions over how comfortably we're going to scale in relation to pure classes and what we can realistically expect on the march to a new level cap.

The TL:DR version of this article -- I believe our future is generally bright, the Druid community continues to have a few concerns over certain aspects of the class, our focus in PvP seems to be changing the most, and I hate Tauren cat form. This is a three-part post, so let's get started with balance. However, if you want to jump ahead to feral, you'll find that here; and the third part, restoration, is here.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Instances, Expansions, Features, Raiding, The Burning Crusade, Leveling, Buffs, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King, Battlegrounds, Arena

Skill Mastery: Survival Instincts

Survival Instincts is one of the surviving (har!) aspects of the now-defunct 51-point Berserk talent in the feral tree (the other is the new version of Berserk, which we discussed here). It's fairly straightforward; for 11 points in the feral tree and a 5-minute cooldown, you get 30% of your maximum health in bear or cat form for 20 seconds. Essentially it's Last Stand for Druids, albeit a Last Stand with a significantly shorter cooldown.

During 5-mans in the beta while tanking, I saw an HP boost into the 26-27K range from a health pool of 19-20K. That's certainly nothing to sneeze at and it's situationally useful, although it'll probably find better and more consistent application under the same circumstances in which Last Stand's typically popped, i.e. progression raid content and/or "Oh S**T!" moments. The latter is particularly welcome as Druids have often complained about bear form's worrying lack of options in the event of an emergency. As many Warriors will tell you, proper use of the ability involves letting your healers know both when you've popped the ability and when it ends. Mods like OptiTaunt can relay this information automatically, but you can also macro it if need be.

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Filed under: Night Elves, Tauren, Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Guides, Classes, Wrath of the Lich King

Wrath Beta patch notes: Feral and Restoration Druids


Continuing on from the analysis of the changes to the Balance druid talent tree, as shown in the first patch notes for the official Wrath of the Lich King Beta, we'll now examine the Feral and Restoration trees.

Feral tree
The Feral tree is seeing changes to limit the benefits that the other two trees, specifically Restoration, can gain from investing a few points into the first few tiers. We are also seeing changes to the ways in which bears will be generating aggro.

The Faerie Fire (Feral) and Feral Charge swap
Feral Charge is currently an 11-point talent into the Feral tree, which contributing to the advantages that Restoration druids currently have in arena. It allows Restoration druids the ability to charge, immobilizing their target and interrupting spells for four seconds.

Instead, Faerie Fire (Feral), which is not something that a Restoration druid would likely spend 11 points to get, will take up the 11-point spot, with Feral Charge taking its place in the tree 21 points in.

In addition, Feral Charge will be usable in cat form, dazing the target and moving the cat behind it. This will help address the concerns that cat form is not especially viable in PvP, although their crit dependency is still a weakness. It will also be useful in dungeons to catch runners and other out of place mobs.

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Filed under: Night Elves, Tauren, Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Expansions, Features, Classes, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King, Battlegrounds, Arena

"We're going to need a montage."


I hate arena.

I'm pretty sure I realized I wasn't going to like it right around the time in Season 2 when I hit a nasty Priest/Warlock combo. They outgeared my own little team massively and knew it. Six of our ten games that week were versus this charming pair, and they reached a point somewhere around the fourth game where they'd kill my partner, Mind Control me, heal me to full, and then Fear me around endlessly while reducing my health inch by agonizing inch. A lot of PvP has the potential be extremely frustrating (she said, eyeing another Arathi Basin match with 4 Horde versus 15 Alliance), but that night was one of the few that has left me wondering whether bursting into tears or just going AFK for a sandwich while they amused themselves were the better option.

So you might say that arena and I have had an uneasy relationship. I need arena for some PvE gear and to get people off my back about doing arena (it's a vicious cycle). Arena quite patently does not need me. And yet -- it remains the last great challenge before Wrath hits. It is the part of the game that I have yet to conquer, or even do anything other than suck horribly at. I'm a Druid, right right? Isn't there some sort of vague, hazy strategy involving HoT's and Travel Form and possibly Cyclone that makes us never, ever die? Some crap like that. And I owe it to the rest of my class to put a badly-played Druid back in arena to see if we can convince people to stop screaming for nerfs.

So. I'm going to commission someone to write some compelling montage music for me, I'm going to BG every day for Season 2 gear, and I'm going to find me a partner with a (um) generous approach to what constitutes "advancement." There's a lot of talk around the forums about the gear gap being too horrible to overcome and the ratings requirements being a barrier to newbie entry. I'll play your game, you rogues. Let's see whether a total scrub still stands a chance.

Ratings Watch: 1500

Filed under: Druid, Priest, Warlock, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, PvP, Humor, Classes, Battlegrounds, Arena

Shifting Perspectives: PvP as a moving target


Every week, John Patricelli of Big Bear Butt presents a well-researched, educational, and entertaining look at the state of the Druid class in WoW today. This week we said, "Screw that," and got someone off the street.

Veronica: Look at you, all helpful.
Logan: Your peskiness being unleashed on Connor brings me joy. Annoy, tiny blonde one! Annoy like the wind!
-- Veronica Mars, "An Echolls Family Christmas"

With apologies to Diane Ruggiero, the writer of the episode quoted above, but I find Logan's snarky comment (did he even have another kind?) to be a perfect, albeit general, means of describing successful Druid PvP.

Let us be frank; I am not, nor am ever likely to be, a hardcore PvPer, and to a great extent this post is directed mostly at people like myself. If you're one of those Druids carrying a 2K+ rating in full Vengeful, then I invite (nay, implore) you to leave comments and corrections based on your own experience, but the article's mostly for regular folks like me, who may not even particularly like PvP but recognize that it is desirable or perhaps necessary, given our ingame goals. As such, most of this applies to battlegrounds, and on a later date we're going to get into arena. Today, we are simply going to talk about how to avoid letting your PvP experience turn you into a miserably unhappy player who would rather undergo an appendectomy via Roto-Rooter than set foot in another EOTS.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, PvP, Guides, Classes, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Battlegrounds, Arena

Shifting Perspectives: Druids just wanna have fun

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them. This week John Patricelli, the Big Bear Butt Blogger, brings you news of one of the coolest Druid events to hit the World of Warcraft.

Despite the impression you may get from previous articles, being a Druid isn't all about raiding. Not hardly. The essence of the Druid is flexibility, the ability to think fast and adapt to changing situations quickly.

Today, I'm going to highlight the kind of imaginative, flexible thinking and sense of fun that I feel is at the heart of being a Druid.

On Saturday, April 26th, a group of Druids from the Penny Arcade Alliance gathered together into a murder of crows, and proceeded to terrorize the unsuspecting Horde of the Dark Iron server.

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Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Druid, PvP, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Macro Anatomy: Faerie Fire and Faerie Fire (Feral)

Welcome to this week's Macro Anatomy! Today we'll be taking look at a simple macro I found for my druid alt, whom I am secretly leveling late at night after studying for finals, when I can't seem to bring myself to play my main. On that note, my apologies for the somewhat lackluster installations of this feature, until finals are done, and after my diving trip to Cozumel, things will be back on track.

Now that you are almost aware of my entire life, let us get down to business. This macro serves to make two spells fit into one button, without button modifiers. To be honest, I had to read the spell description for Faerie Fire and Faerie Fire (Feral) a couple of times before I got it. (I really shouldn't be trying to assimilate non-school information right now, but I love WoW.) These two spells come in handy, I've already used it on a pesky undead rogue, and I wanted to make sure I wasn't leaving Cat Form or Bear Form while using it.

Come on in to get this little space-saver.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Tricks, Odds and ends, PvP, Features, Talents, Buffs, Macro Anatomy

Talents you hate


My main is a tanking feral druid who respecs to PvP resto pretty regularly (you know you're playing a hybrid class when your local trainer publicly thanks you for financing his boat payments), and every week I find myself staring at my talent calculator wanting to take a shillelagh to Nature's Focus. The Druid restoration tree has a lot of talents that leave you wondering what you're supposed to be using them for, and I nominate this one as winner, class, and show. Which says something, given the number of resto talents there are that either: a). make no sense if you take the 41-point talent Tree of Life, which virtually every raiding resto does, or b). also make no sense if you mostly PvP.

Rant after the cut.

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Filed under: Night Elves, Tauren, Druid, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, Raiding, Classes, Talents, Battlegrounds, Arena

Shifting Perspectives: Online Druid resources



Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them, brought to you by David Bowers and Dan O'Halloran.


I promised that I'd cover pre-Karazhan Restoration gear in this week's column, but I've since discovered that WoW Wiki has already done it! Their list includes all Burning Crusade gear, so just look at the pre-raid items. These lists come in two flavors at WoW Wiki: leather only and cloth only, depending on your style.

And while you're there, check out the different Restoration builds are available to healing druids on their Druid Build page. There's also an excellent sticky post on the US Druid Forums Gearing up For BC Endgame Healing.

This leads me to the topic of today's column: online resources for Druids. Today, I'm going to highlight gear guides, build guides, play guides, and wikis that provides useful information for the Warcraft Druid.

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Filed under: Druid, Guides, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

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