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Posts with tag druids

Shifting Perspectives: Why (or why not) to play a Druid


Every week (sort of), Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, in the anticipation of a patch likely to bring many new players into the fold, we descend into the depths of an ancient library in pursuit of Druidic history, lean back in our chair considering the modern form of the class, cast a gimlet eye toward the future, and then wonder how many more clichés we can shove into a sentence before readers start writing angry letters to our editor.

Dear new Druids,

Welcome to the class -- and for some of you, welcome back. I've observed a flood of players rolling premade Druids on the PTR to try out with the new bear and cat forms, and with the promise of new moonkin and tree forms arriving at some point in the future, I think it's reasonable to expect lots of you trying (or rediscovering) the class on the live realms. You are most welcome, and we are glad to have you. This is the best class in the game.

Now, I'll grant I'm prejudiced, because I have loved this class since the first day I started playing. I love it so much that it's difficult for me to remember that there are 5...or 8...or...however many other classes there are. I don't know. I haven't checked lately. I'm told Blizzard added another one, but I can't be expected to keep up with every little thing.

So.

It is possible that we have changed more than any other class between the beginning of the game and July 2009 as I write this. I want you to know what the Druid is all about, why it might be a good choice for you, and why (as much as I find this difficult to write) you may wish to steer clear before we start a series on leveling a Druid.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Features, Humor, Lore, Leveling, Classes, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

The Queue: Panda-monium edition

Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's daily Q&A column where the WoW Insider team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Michael Sacco will be your host today.

Here's a Queue question straight from me to me: What do me and panda bears have in common? The answer is rings around our eyes, though I'm pretty sure that pandas have them genetically and not from staying up until seven in the morning watching Veronica Mars.

But of course, what does that question have to do with The Queue? I could say "I guess you'll just have to read on! Excelsior!", or I could just tell you that it's because people asked about Pandarens today. Let's start off with some basic questions first, though.

iamnotacarebear asked:

The question i have is with this increase of running the heroics, is the red heroic drake going to be removed? I would hate to see this happen, but i wouldn't be surprised.

Good question, IANACB!

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Filed under: The Queue

Video of new Night Elf Druid forms in 3.2



And here are the Night Elf forms! I think I've avoided some of the annoying audio issues from the video on the 3.2 Tauren Druid forms, and I've also included an extended shot of the NE cat form's run animation, as it's one of the things that really distinguishes the bigger, sleeker cat model from its live counterpart. Unfortunately, they haven't fixed the bug where one of the bear models (the one linked to the NE's green hair) is unavailable (you'll get the black bear form instead), so only 4 of the 5 new bear colors could be included here.

If you're unable to play this with audio, the pertinent commentary is that: a). I tried to keep the camera as close as possible to help people appreciate the detail, mostly because: b). A lot of the subtler color distinctions just don't come across very well on the capture, and I think I spent too much time trying to get every angle as a result: c). The forms are really gorgeous, and the NE cat in motion is lovely, and: d). I'm still a dork.

UPDATE: A new PTR build went live late last night after the video was completed and uploaded, and Blizzard fixed the bug where one of the Night Elf bear forms was unavailable. I've included pictures past the cut.

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Machinima, Features

Video of new Tauren Druid forms in patch 3.2



Hail and well met, Druid colleagues. I ventured into the scary realm of moviemaking in order to capture the new Druid forms on the PTR. Because my Hordeside main copied over first, we'll take care of the Tauren initially. The Night Elf video is in progress, and I've been told that Blizzard fixed the bug where one of the NE bear forms wasn't properly linked to a hair color, so stay tuned.

Anyway, this is my first video and I apologize for the amateurish quality; I'll get better (though not necessarily less dorky) with practice, but I really wanted to get this out for everyone who can't get on the PTR but wants to see what the new forms look like in motion. If you can't run sound at the moment, the only really pertinent commentary is that: a). The forms are beautiful: b). They look great in motion: c). For whatever reason, the bear butt has actually grown, and: d). The Night Elf video is on its way.

If you're having issues with Viddler, you can find the same video (in slightly higher quality) here on YouTube.

Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Machinima, Features

Insider Trader: Patch 3.2 profession change analysis


Insider Trader is your inside line on making, selling, buying and using player-made products.

Over the past few days, some upcoming professions changes for Patch 3.2 have been announced, and although they are not as detailed as they could be, several of the changes will have quite an impact.

First and foremost, every profession-specific buff is being upgraded. This includes an Enchanter's ability to enhance their own rings, a Leatherworker's bracer enchants, and more. For a complete list of the current profession bonuses, check out Insider Trader's guide to Profession-Specific Buffs, parts one through three.

These buffs also answer some of the concerns surrounding the upcoming Jewelcrafting nerf that epic gems might be introduced without a buff to the Dragon's Eyes, which, in combination with the fact that these gems will no longer be prismatic, would effectively squash the Jewelcrafting bonus.

Jewelcrafters will also do well to note that they will be able to acquire epic gems by prospecting Titanium. Combined with a Blacksmith's two extra prismatic sockets, this powerful duo is one of the most popular profession combinations.

In addition, Engineers will be seeing some welcome changes to their profession that may make it more appealing. Unfortunately, some of the details have not been made public, so the competitiveness of their self buffs, for example, remains to be seen.

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Filed under: Fishing, Alchemy, Blacksmithing, Cooking, Engineering, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Jewelcrafting, Features, Insider Trader (Professions)

Shifting Perspectives: An Ulduar class preview, part 4


Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, another Ulduar boss dies to moonkin nukes, feral claws, and tree slaps.

Chase Christian from Encrypted Text recently started a series of guides on doing Ulduar as a Rogue, and I must admit that the relative ease and simplicity of describing the role of a pure DPS while raiding is enough to make me sob quietly into a hanky. Meanwhile, I'm driving myself to the nuthouse trying to describe four entirely different roles for a single class. Pardon my saying so, but this column was the hell of a lot easier to write back when we sucked at everything that wasn't healing. Damn you, multi-spec viability! Damn you to HELL!

Before we get started, I'm going to continue what I did with the last Ulduar preview column, link to general strategy guides, and assume you have a basic familiarity with the encounter before delving into more Druid-specific advice. Today we're going to confine ourselves to Freya, as it's one of the few Ulduar fights I have now seen outside of the PTR. With luck, my computer is going to cooperate for a full clear this week plus a few hard modes, so I will be revising (and, as necessary, expanding) our current Ulduar Druid guides to reflect changes that Blizzard has made to the fights and a few notes concerning hard mode issues. Any changes made will be noted in next week's column.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Raiding, Bosses, Guides, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Breakfast Topic: What do you think of the new Druid cat forms?

Hot the heels of the new druid bear forms revealed last week, it was time for the cats out there to get a make over and Blizzard revealed the new Tauren look on Tuesday with Night Elves following on Thursday. Personally I think both sets look awesome and as an Alliance druid, I actually like my cat form as is. However I know an awful lot of Tauren druids have been unhappy with their pseudo-lion's lackluster looks and there are probably some Night Elf Druids out there who are little bored as well. I'm still waiting, in hope that the equally boring travel form might see a revamp too but that's for another day.

So come on Druids, are you pleased with how your cat forms turned out? What about you non-Druids out there? Are you now tempted to reroll just to try out the new form? Don't like the look? Are the Tauren cat forms now realistic enough? Do you think your Night Elf kitty now feels more fuzzball (like my Ceridwen here) than ferocious killer? Do you think Blizzard could have done better or be a little more imaginative with the designs? Go on, speak up, and tell us what you think.

Filed under: Druid, Patches, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Breakfast Topics, Lore

The real new Night Elf cat forms


You have probably seen the new Night Elf cat forms by now, the last of the four feral forms that are going to be revamped in patch 3.2. Reaction to them has been mixed; many players love them, while many think they leave something to be desired in the ferocity department. As our newest columnist Eddie put it, "You have to love the little 'bells' on the colors. Just like a nice little kitty cat." I fall on this side as well - they look more delightful than dangerous.

Evidently Anik of Rexxar agrees with me and Eddie, because he was inspired to make the above image showing the logical extension of the direction the cat forms seem to be taking. What gets me is how little editing really needed to be done - they really look like that already, for the most part.

Of course, several of our writers are extra-excited about these newest forms; Zach and Manda both promise that they are rolling druids just to get access to them. Sailer Moon Cosplay Cat and Scene Kid Cat are their picks, in case you were wondering.

Filed under: Druid, Patches, Humor

WoW Insider Show live this afternoon on Ustream

Our podcast is back yet again this afternoon, and it's sure to be a good one. Turpster and I will welcome our bloggers Lesley Smith and Robin Torres on to talk about the biggest news in WoW from the last week: we'll touch on the new Druid forms and what we all think of those, 3.1.3 and how it's worked out so far, players with amazing achievements in game (like the level 1-80 no deaths guy, and Ensidia's big finish), and scams you might want to look out for ingame. And if we have time, we'll talk about one of the stranger stories to come out of the WoW community lately.

The show begins over on the our Ustream page at June 6, 2009 3:30 PM EDT , or you can jump after the break to see an embedded feed. We'll also answer your email, which you can send to us at theshow@wow.com, and as usual we'll be chatting live both during and after the show. Should be a lot of fun -- we'll see you this afternoon!

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Raiding, Leveling, WoW Insider Show

Zarhym explains Druid form colour combos


Doubtless Druids all around the world are still absorbing the new-look Night Elf cat form which was announced yesterday. We know Blizzard was going for something of a colour-coded approach, trying to match skins to that of their owners but what does it all mean? Well, blue Zarhym posted on the forums this morning and went into a little more detail.

It seems that rather than being able to go 'oh I'll have the white kitty with the cut pink gem on it's collar', that your form is actually linked to your toon's physical appearance. Yes, you can easily change how your bear or cat form will look but the only was to do this, in my understanding, is by visiting a barber shop and changing the skin tone (and/or hair) of your Druid in humanoid form.

Zarhym puts it better than I:

"Now that everyone has had a chance to check out the new art for druid cat and bear forms, we'd like to share with you the current break down of Tauren skin tones and Night Elf hair colors associated with each form color. Please note that, while we have attempted to associate each form color as carefully as possible, this list is subject to change before the next major content patch goes live. All options for skin tone (Tauren) and hair color (Night Elves) are listed below followed by the forms that will be associated with each set of tones/colors."

Click on the jump to see what your druid is going to look like.

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Odds and ends, Blizzard, News items, Forums

Revamped Night Elf Druid cat form revealed


Yes, Druids, it's that time again! After eking out their reveal of the Tauren and Night Elf bear forms and the Tauren cat over the past fortnight, it's finally time to see what your Night Elf Druid cat form is going to look like come patch 3.2. We told you earlier how Zahrym let everyone know they would be announcing the final revamped druid form today, but it seems Allison is nowhere to be found so you get to hear my impressions instead. However the rest of the team really don't seem to like the new look at all.

My first thoughts are actually quite positive. I love the cat versions of the Night Elf tattoos and the shiny gem collars are a lovely touch, even if the leather bracelet/anklet/pawlet seem a little weird and out of place. When did Night Elves get a leather fetish exactly? The colours are nice, all a variation on Night Elf skin tone but I confess I prefer the colouration of the old cat design. Over all it's quite a nice selection of designs and I think players are going to be rather pleased come patch day to be able to stand out in a crowd of druids, even if not everyone is going to like the new look. My only question is: what's the deal with the different coloured eyes? It's nice but somewhat creepy looking. To learn more about all the new Druid forms, don't forget you can check out Blizzard's in development page.

Filed under: Druid, Patches, Blizzard, News items, Wrath of the Lich King

Night Elf cat forms coming tomorrow


We've already seen the graphics for three out of the four new feral forms we know are coming for druids in patch 3.2: Tauren bear and cat forms, and Night Elf bear forms. This only leaves Night Elf cat forms left to be seen. (They might be redesigning moonkin and tree forms too; they're being cagey about that when people ask. My guess would be no.)

I've been anxiously refreshing pages all day to see if the Night Elf cat forms would come. In vain, apparently, as Zarhym has just posted to let us know that the forms in question will be unveiled tomorrow "later in the day," which probably means mid-afternoon (PST) sometime. In the mean time, we've got the other three sets of forms in the gallery below. What would your ideal Night Elf cat look like?

Filed under: Druid, Patches

Shifting Perspectives: The day has come

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, we contemplate whether the phrase "the agony and the ecstasy" can be properly applied to graphical improvements in MMORPG's.

So once I finished sobbing tears of joy over the new bear art that debuted last week (and looking up pictures of Bull Terriers after seeing the new version of Tauren cat form), I started tabulating reactions online, and held the following conversation with myself:

Me: Is there an unusually high level of stupidity in the forums over this issue?

Myself: Can the level of stupidity in the forums ever be correctly described as "unusually high?"

While forced to admit that my good bifurcated self had a point, it remains that the sheer amount of dumb in the forums threatens to explode from its containment area and slosh down the hallway carrying off screaming bystanders. This is Bad. Some of those bystanders might be the artists working on making sure the new version of Tauren cat form goes live without bugs, and I don't want that. I worked hard to ensure that this site is ranked #1 by Google for the search phrase "I hate Tauren cat form," but I'd like to be able to retire that tag permanently.

Anyway. Let's take some time here and address some frequently asked questions, common misconceptions, and whether Blizzard owes the American Kennel Club a kickback:

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Features, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

WoW Insider Show Episode 92: Giving Druids another chance

We had a great time as always last Saturday on our podcast -- Turpster and I welcomed Kevin Dika, the winner of the Child's Play Children's Week auction, who gave a very generous donation to Penny Arcade's charity and won a guest spot with us on the show. We talked with Kevin about his WoW experience -- he plays a Ret Pally, but hey, nobody's perfect, right? -- and got some insight from him about running a guild in the game and what a tough job it can be, how to deal with kids and other folks playing along with you, and how to come up with a worthwhile balance between playing the game and living in real life. We answered your emails (including a few more "Turpster is..." emails), and then we talked about the most popular posts from the last week of WoW.com: the new Druid art form coming to the game, what's new in 3.1.3, and where Blizzard has gone wrong recently with 5-mans, and where they might go next.

It was an excellent show, and we're happy to have Kevin on to thank him for his support (and he did a pretty great job on the podcast, too). We'll be back on as usual next Saturday at 3:30pm Eastern over on the Ustream page, and we might even do some more video streaming next week -- we did a little bit during the aftershow this week, and it worked out better than I thought. Stay tuned.

Get the podcast:
[iTunes] Subscribe to the WoW Insider Show directly in iTunes.
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[MP3] Download the MP3 directly.

Listen here on the page:

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Podcasts, Podcasting, Fan stuff, Blizzard, Humor, WoW Insider Show

New Druid form art in patch 3.2


You hear that sound?

That's the sound of a few million Druid players crapping their pants.

Yes, the day has finally come. Hell has frozen over, cats and dogs are living together, and the world is at peace. Two Druid forms (cat and bear) are getting new looks!

I'll just let that sink in for a minute.

Zarhym has announced
on the forums today that this change will be coming during the next major content patch. The new artwork will only be for cat and bear form for the patch, tress are out of luck. Blizzard has only released the new look for the Tauren Bear Form right now, but the others are sure to follow "Soon." Check out a high res image of the new looks.

Additional clarification on the how the forms are selected after the break.

Editorial interjection from Allison Robert:
YES! YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF &$*&@(@( FIX TAUREN CAT FORM YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES!

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Filed under: Druid

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