Filed under: Druid
Posts with tag feral-druids
Appearances to the contrary, the waning days of an expansion are actually a pretty good time to apply to a raiding guild. That's when attendance gets choppy, the pool and the grill issue a siren call from the deck, people go on vacation, or -- having "finished" the expansion -- they just take off, period. If you look at the recruitment forums, you'll see a ton of guilds looking for players right now. If you've ever wanted to raid but haven't gotten the chance, I think there is no better time. The Icecrown zone buff is a fantastic buffer for anyone who's not emerging with a bevy of best in slot from tier 9, and the raid itself is one brilliant lore moment from beginning to end.
However, applying to a raiding guild -- particularly if you haven't done much raiding in the past -- can be on the intimidating side. With that in mind, here's a guide on how best to present yourself if you're applying anywhere as a feral or restoration druid.
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.
Gallery: Revamped Druid forms
So far we've already seen the bear forms for Tauren and Night Elves. Today, Blizzard unveiled the replacements for the much-maligned Tauren cat form. You can see the results above. My initial reaction is that they're still a bit ugly, but way better than the previous Tauren cat form (which is marked "Old Cat form" above).
Here's what a few of our staff members thought:
Elizabeth: "A million times better. Still not as cool as night elf, but better."
Allison: "The eyes are way too small. Still going to be glad I play a bear."
Lesley: "Those horns are evil."
Alex: "I'm gonna roll a Tauren Druid so I can play that black one with the grey mane. I'm going to RP an old grizzled war vet Druid."
What do you think?
Gallery: Adam's WoW Gallery
Like most of you, I'm still running a lot of dungeons and getting acquainted with the array of drops available on both normal and heroic mode, and I'm not anywhere near as familiar with the Northrend 5-man drops as I am with Outland's after tanking them all eleventy-billion times. For the moment, my ability to compare all of the reputation gear available from Wrath factions with potential dungeon drops is fairly small and mostly confined to feral equipment, so I apologize. What I can say is that I've noticed a fairly clear trend favoring Balance if you're planning on getting a lot of your gear at 80 from faction reputations (although if you go that route there's a sizable pitfall in the form of a serious lack of +hit on most pieces). Feral is a little more hit-or-miss. Restoration seems to have the hardest time getting its best pre-raid or heroic pieces from rep grinds, and I'm not going to lie; get used to most of your best pieces being cloth.
With what are essentially four different specs to cover for all the new factions available in Wrath, this got a bit long. So this week we'll discuss the rep grinds that become accessible a little earlier in the trek to 80 -- namely, the Tuskarr, the Alliance Vanguard/Horde Expedition, Wyrmrest Accord, Kirin Tor, and Oracles/Frenzyheart. Next week we'll cover the Knights of the Ebon Blade, the Argent Crusade, and Sons of Hodir, as you're not likely to see these guys as early as you'll see the others. Indeed, before a quest line that phases the lady into existence, you won't see the Knights of the Ebon Blade quartermaster at all.
EDIT: Now that the faction guides are finished, here's a set of quick links in case you're looking for information on one faction in particular:
- The Argent Crusade Guide
THE DRUID CLASS IN WRATH
- Balance: We took a thorough look at the balance spec's current state and likely future here. Our laserchicken contingent probably received the most substantive overhaul of all three specs heading into the expansion, and most of the news is very good indeed.
- Feral: Our assessment of the feral is here and includes a look at Blizzard's effort to split the tree into bear-centric and cat-centric talents. Bears on the outside seemed hardest hit with an average loss of 10K+ armor post-patch 3.0.2, but don't let it depress you; bear tanking is better than it's ever been. Cat DPS is poised to gain a massive boost at level 75 with Savage Roar, but until then it's same ol', same ol'.
- Restoration: Resto, covered here, has probably taken the biggest blow in terms of both PvE and PvP viability in the form of a Lifebloom nerf and the disappearance of now-classic PvP specs, but we still got a lot of big buffs. Tree of Life has been vastly improved and we've gained both a flash heal (at 80) and an AoE HoT. Unfortunately, Wild Growth may be facing a nerf in the form of a cooldown soon, but nothing's certain yet. I don't want to sound too down here. You will notice the Lifebloom nerf in the post-3.0.2 world, but resto's gained a tremendous amount of raw healing output coupled with its customary mana efficiency. Stay tuned; healing is likely to undergo some major changes soon.
You may recall a while back that we covered the problem with bear tanks in Wrath of the Lich King. In short, the new shared gear itemization between Rogues and Feral Druids is leaving bear Druids incredibly starved for armor and stamina. Extra stamina and armor is wasted on rogues, but is mandatory for Bears. Bears, therefore, have suffered.
Ghostcrawler has now let us know that the dev team has noticed the problem. The justification, of course, is as usual: They want less useless stuff to drop. Ideally, itemization should be tight enough that there is a high chance of people getting stuff they can use off a boss, even if that means 12 other people in the raid can use it as well.
Highlights for the class changes include: Feral Druids getting their single target and group based taunts buffed by their +hit rating; Rogues getting Hemorrhage buff as well as a redesign of Shadowstep; and Priests receiving the Focused Will buff as well as Druids getting the Natural Perfection buff even buffer than we reported on earlier.
Chest spawns in Hellfire Ramparts, Karazhan: Chess Event and The Mechanar will not be lootable by anyone absent for a significant amount of the boss fights near the chests. On the upside, Heroic Ramparts and Heroic Mechanar chests will contain a Badge of Justice for every member in the party and the Karazhan cache will contain two! I can tell what two Heroic dungeons are about to get very popular.
Finally, special Engineered goggles are no longer necessary to see the gas clouds in Netherstorm for mote extraction. However, the goggles will now allow the gas clouds to be seen on the minimap in addition to whatever other tracking the player currently has up.
With Patch 2.3 background loading this week, one can only hope Zul'Aman will be available for all of us to enjoy soon and Patch 2.4 introducing the Sunwell Plateau will be served up on the PTR right after.