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Posts with tag i-hate-tauren-cat-form

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


Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This week, welcome to Thunder Bluff.

This week, we're continuing our series on why (or why not) to play a particular druidic race in Cataclysm, and today we'll continue with the tauren. Fair warning: We tread on some expansion spoilers in this article.

The full series is available here:
  1. Shifting Perspectives: Why (or why not) to play a night elf druid
  2. Shifting Perspectives: Why (or why not) to play a tauren druid
  3. Shifting Perspectives: Why (or why not) to play a worgen druid
  4. Shifting Perspectives: Why (or why not) to play a troll druid

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

Shifting Perspectives: Answers to questions nobody asked

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting feral/restoration druids and those who group with them. This week, we get a beta key, and maybe a little sloshed.

After getting a beta key, it was my intent to hit the servers and write an FAQ/reader mailbag-type column, but I'm not going to do that today. I'm going to answer my questions, not yours. I don't care about any of you.

Well, that's not true. I do care. But I've been in the beta for less than a week and:
  • Half the stuff we've read about has been scrapped or just hasn't been implemented.
  • The other half is a writhing mass of angry, toxic bugs.
  • The servers crash like that drunk buddy who swore he'd only be on your couch for a few days but is still there weeks later and you poke him with a stick every morning to make sure he's alive and unfortunately he is.
  • About the most I could do without pulling several consecutive all-nighters was level a worgen and troll druid to level 13 as quickly as I could. Oh, and wipe a Blackwing Caverns group several times over.
Readers beware: while I may not answer any useful questions past the cut, there are still a few serious spoilers here.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

In-game models I would change if I could

In the transition to Cataclysm, an increasing amount of the game looks pretty dated, and we've already see Blizzard take a wrench to a number of models like druid forms and major lore figures. I've been hoping for a while that they'll do the same with the game's earliest and most dated models -- the ones that haven't changed a whit since the classic game hit beta -- and particularly the following. All of them are a jarring difference from the graphical quality of Northrend creations, and only stand to get more so in Cataclysm:

1. The wyvern


The wyvern is the model from which Blizzard cribbed the horrifying older version of Tauren cat form, but it was already awful in its own right. Compared to gryphons, wyverns look...well...terrible. They have a host of much less impressive and realistic animations and just seem like they're a lower-resolution model overall. The run animation on the player mount version makes it obvious that the thing was never meant to run, and the top of its head looks like somebody took an experimental swing at it with a frying pan. I have yet to see a Horde player fly one of these monstrosities longer than they absolutely have to.

Dear God, someone please put this affront to nature out of its misery.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends

World of Warcraft Patch 3.2 Druid Guide


WoW.com has covered patch 3.2 extensively. Everything from the surprising changes to flying mounts, to the latest and greatest loot, and all the changes in between. In our patch 3.2 class guides we take a look at exactly what changes in each class and how the changes will affect your playing.

In case you can't tell, I really loved the series of pictures I got to shoot on the PTR of the new Night Elf cat loping across the frozen wastes of Dragonblight. It is almost impossible to take a bad picture with the new forms, but there's just something about them that inspires you to hit the road looking for the best contexts in which to show them off. I foresee this may prove troublesome in the poorly-lit reaches of certain dungeons, where Druids will be loath to walk for fear that their beauty may only imperfectly grace the monitor. Such is life, my friends.

Where was I? I had to stop there to weep into a sherry. Well, no matter. Patch 3.2 is here, and with it a number of changes for the Druid class, both good and bad.

Read on for a guide to all 4 specs in 3.2 and the changes likely to impact Druids in both PvE and PvP.

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

The Queue: Dragon Slave!


Welcome back to The Queue, WoW.com's daily Q&A column where the WoW.com team answers your questions about the World of Warcraft. Allison Robert, erroneously described by Alex Ziebart as "universally adored" on this site (whisper the phrase "I hate Tauren cat form" in Turtlehead's direction and run) is your hostess today.

Mmmm...my favorite kind of Queue, the kind with a tank question. Actually, there were two good tank questions from the previous Queue, but the one asked by Gatorforest is something I'd like to address in a separate article. Additionally, two of the questions you'll see here wound up requiring fairly involved answers, so there are a few more questions I'd like to take a crack at sometime later this weekend if I get the time.

And because it's Friday:

Charlie asks...

How many Queue columns does it take for one to finally reach the front of the line?


The readers or the writers? I don't know about the former, but for us, it depends on the outcome of the previous day's in-staff gladiatorial match. Much like Mary Sues in the now-classic Pirate Monkey comic, THERE CAN BE ONLY ONE. Actually, I'm just using this as an excuse to quote the following:

Professor Flitwick: Wait, she said she's both Dumbledore's and Snape's daughter. How is that possible?

Dumbledore: Ehh, remember that Christmas party where we all got really drunk?

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Features, Guides, 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

Patch 3.2 Druid changes


3.2 approaches! Sort of. The PTR itself isn't up yet (at least, not as I write this), but nonetheless, 3.2 approaches on little cat feet.

I'm going to examine the 3.2 PTR patch notes line by relevant line, just because there are several changes that impact Druids while not being class-specific. If you want a quick summary without being massively spoiled, Balance is getting a huge and welcome change to the functionality of Eclipse, Cats are getting bonked by the nerfbat, and PvP-Restos are really getting bonked by the nerfbat. Bears, well...not much is going to happen to bears this patch, which is a little demoralizing given the improvements being made to Pally tanks, but that's OK. We still have our, uh, amazing Tier 8 set bonuses and...um...the best -- sort of -- tanking cooldowns in, uh, the...uh...

...Oh, screw it, just stack the hell out of stamina and pray to the gods of RNG if your guild's dumb enough to try Ulduar on hard-mode. Congratulations; you have now done all you can possibly do to prepare yourself for modern tanking.

Sad lolbare is sad. But cough syrup for everybody! Is nise! Now let's take a look:

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items

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

Shifting Perspectives: Restoration and the Tree Druid's future

Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, rather than plagiarizing from Stephen Hawking, we plagiarize from ourselves, and for the second time in column history, we shelve our Previously Scheduled Guide in favor of an emergency summit concerning Tree conservation.

A question for Druids from Ghostcrawler himself; is Tree of Life form fun?

I'd like to get the question a bit more exposure both here and on the forums, because it's a thought-provoking issue. No other healer, as he observes, has to sacrifice anything in order to use a key talent in their healing tree/s, and from how Ghostcrawler's worded his post, it seems pretty clear that the PvE and PvP healing output of the Restoration spec is explicitly balanced around the use of Tree of Life. That's fine -- it is our 41-point talent, and a good one at that. It's not unreasonable for Blizzard to expect that we'll use it. However, It does have implications for game balance when 3 of 4 healing classes retain all of their offensive capabilities, crowd-control, and interrupts while healing, and the Druid relinquishes all of the above in order to provide the same level of healing throughput.

I took a look at the thread in question, and if you want my honest opinion, some of the issues being described are the logical evolution of problems from October 2005 when Tree of Life went live. The game has changed, and while the flagship Restoration talent has slowly changed alongside it, the inherent design of the form still reflects realities from the classic game rather than Wrath. Interestingly, many of these same problems affect moonkin as well.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Classes, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Forums

Have we already seen future mounts?


One of the things I never forgot in the run-up to patch 2.3 was seeing the photo above from MMO Champion. This was before the Cenarion War Hippogryph went live, and it was the faction's new (albeit expensive) reward for reaching exalted. Boubouille, as so often happens, datamined a bit more than what Blizzard actually permitted to go live, and the skin at the top left was what wound up being the Cenarion Expedition's flying mount. Sprinting for the CE quartermaster when the patch hit and discovering that that was the only model available (and that it couldn't walk) was a bit of a let-down, to the point where I decided to wait on buying the mount in the forlorn hopes that the other mount colors and animations would go live. Quoth the female Tauren, moo hoo hoo.

Since then it's become apparent that the hippogryph at top right became the Argent Hippogryph (score!) and the one at bottom left is now the Silver Covenant Hippogryph. That some of the Tournament daily quests award Silver Covenant/Sunreaver reputation makes me suspicious that the hippogryph and Sunreaver dragonhawk are eventually going to be rep mounts. That still leaves two hippogryph skins "left over," and you've got wonder if they're going into the game -- and if so, in what capacity. EIther way, there aren't words to describe my happiness at not being consigned to the ugliness of a wyvern (the airborne version of Tauren cat form) forever. I'll grant that my main is a Druid so I had a ready escape anyway (and I thank thee daily, Blizzard, for thy boon of total win in the guise of swift flight form), but sometimes a girl likes options.

Filed under: Odds and ends, Mounts

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: 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: Let my kitties go!


Every Tuesday/Wednesday/some sort of day occurring midweek, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week Allison Robert yanks John Patricelli's column again, hoping to make good on a threat previously made concerning her "dissatisfaction" with Tauren cat form. And by dissatisfaction she might mean something else.

I'll level with you; we have a huge Druid post in the pipeline that's going to round up the changes to the class in Wrath, new talents, new skills, new everything, and frankly I'm sick to death about reading or writing anything having to do with the expansion. So, just to buck the overwhelming trend that threatens to drive us all to the nuthouse, I'm going to turn to a topic that's plagued Druids for a while.

By this I mean the perennial form issue, something that my Druid colleagues on the blog have previously termed the Same Old Animal Posterior, or SOAP. But it's one that we've been given reason to believe will change in...Wrath. Well, that didn't last long. You'll note that David's article was written in October 2007, more than a year ago, but the same thing could have been posted in 2006 as well. Druid forms haven't changed since launch*, and while they were never really at the cutting edge of Blizzard's art direction as a result**, they look more and more shabby in relation to the higher-polygon models and landscapes. As everything around you gets better and better -- more evocative lighting, more intricate details, fantastic animation -- it's hard not to feel a strange sense of displacement as you shift into a 2004 form within a 2008 game.

But at long last we may see Druid form customization, an overhaul to the default forms themselves, or possibly (hopefully?) both.

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Filed under: Night Elves, Tauren, Druid, Analysis / Opinion, Features, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King

Ask A Beta Tester: Spirit, AoE, and raid loot


I'm going to start off this AABT by stealing a question that Alex actually took last time, mostly because I started laughing when I read it yesterday. I have, oh, conservatively, billions of Wrath screenshots on my hard drive at this point, but there's one I remember all too well.

Marathan asks...

Some time ago, there was a talk about new player character models for Wrath - and even some bugged pictures. So the question is, are they going live? Are we finally going to get improved graphics on our characters?

As Alex wrote, Blizzard used one beta build to test the ease of implementing new skins and some of them...didn't turn out too well. Imagine you're me and you get a beta key. Budget a few hours of anticipatory excitement while your main copies over. She's a 70 Tauren Druid who has been with you since day one, your sole 70, and you think she's the most beautiful thing in the game even if to everyone else she's an ungainly 8-foot heifer. Now imagine booting up the Wrath beta for the first time and being horrified to see your beloved character with a Glasgow smile, like the developers had seen the Joker in The Dark Knight and thought, "Hey! We could make that work!"

Holy water did nothing. Neither did crucifixes, garlic, a wooden stake, waving the Bible in the direction of the laptop, or sobbing quietly in a corner.

On the plus side, here was finally something in the game to which Tauren cat form was an actual graphical improvement.

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Filed under: Druid, Hunter, Mage, Priest, Shaman, Mining, Tailoring, Analysis / Opinion, Expansions, Features, Wrath of the Lich King

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