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Posts with tag misery

Arcane Brilliance: Reaching the hit cap



Each week Arcane Brilliance chats a bit about Mages and all things Mage-related. You may wonder what Arcane Brilliance likes to discuss the rest of the week. Even if you don't wonder that, Arcane Brilliance is going to tell you: It's still Mages. Yes, Arcane Brilliance pretty much talks about Mages constantly, even when it is wildly inappropriate to do so: at the dinner table...during business meetings...in church...at funerals...off-topic on completely unrelated message boards...Arcane Brilliance doesn't get invited to very many parties, in case you were curious.

When people see me in public, they often ask me, "Christian, how can I get my Mage hit capped?" It's probably the most common question I get, right up there with "Why are you so awesome?" and "Where are your pants?"

Okay, that's a lie. Nobody ever approaches me in public, and nobody asks me any of those questions, except for maybe the one about the location of my pants. That's a whole other story, and my attorney has advised me not to speak of it. Still, reaching the hit cap is something every Mage should be striving toward, but far too many of us either don't realize how important it is, or don't know enough about how to get there effectively. Fear not. Arcane Brilliance is here to explain the mysteries of the hit cap to you. The good news? It isn't nearly as complicated as you may think.

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Filed under: Mage, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, How-tos, PvP, Draenei, Features, Raiding, Guides, Classes, Talents, Buffs, Enchants, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

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

Spiritual Guidance: What each type of Priest can do and arena musings


Every Sunday (usually), Spiritual Guidance will offer practical insight for priests of the holy profession. Your host is Matt Low, the grand poobah of World of Matticus and a founder of PlusHeal, a new healing community for all restorative classes. This week, Matticus looks at what a Priest can do and reflects on his experience so far in arena.

I managed to get myself into a pickup heroic Naxx group the other day. No, it wasn't on my Priest. The Priest is my baby and I can't lock him into such raids while we're still raiding. It was my Shaman that I took into heroic Naxx. After Flame Shocking and Lava Bursting my way through both Spider and Plague Wings and the first two bosses of the Military Quarter, we came across the Four Horsemen.

(Yes, there is a point to this, keep reading!)

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Filed under: Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Raiding, Classes, Buffs, (Priest) Spiritual Guidance, Arena

Lichborne: A Death Knight statistics primer

Death Knight Itemization: This guy is doing it wrong.
Welcome to Lichborne, the weekly Death Knight column by professor Daniel Whitcomb, who totally has a PhD in Death-Knightology from Ebon Hold University. It's the truth, I swear.

I've seen a lot of people asking these questions as we've been getting into the expansion: Now that I am trying to gear by Death Knights, what stats should I get? What's good for a Death Knight? Which armor should I take. We've started getting in that somewhat in the last few columns, with advice on reputation gear and starting zone gear, but I figured today we should delve a little bit more into the why of Death Knight stats.

Today's column will double as a little bit of primer on how Death Knights get their power, and what stats you should be looking for on armor in general to make your Death Knight the best it can be. It's not completely in depth, but it should get you well on the road to understanding just how Death Knights get all that awesome power and sexiness.

We'll have 3 sections today. The Good are stats that are excellent choices for DPS, Tanks, or both. The So-So are stats which still do us some good, but are pretty situational or conditional in their usefulness. The Outcasts are those stats that you should avoid -- Well, I'd say avoid like the plague, but we're Death Knights. We like the plague around here. So I'll just say you should avoid them.

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Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Tips, Raiding, Leveling, Guides, Talents, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King, (Death Knight) Lichborne

Shadow Priest talent build for Patch 3.0.2

Echoes of Doom is here, along with all of its tasty new talent points. Things haven't changed very much for us Shadow Priests. If you enjoyed the Shadow Priest playstyle before, you still will. The numbers you put out in terms of Healing, DPS and mana regen are wildly different, but the buttons you push are pretty much the same. If you found Shadow Priest playstyle (not necessarily the numbers game) a little stale before patch 3.0.2, this patch and even Wrath itself won't change that very much. If you plan on sticking with Shadow, good on ya.

I'm going to lay out my current Shadow talent build and explain why I picked the talents I did. Keep in mind that this spec is not for every aspect of the game. It's not even for every player. I'm using this spec as a level 70, PvE raiding spec. It's not perfect, I'm not completely happy with it, but I think that's because our trees are currently meant for level 80 and not level 70. I haven't been able to come up with something I like better yet. When I plan ahead for level 80, it feels much more complete. We don't have the luxury of those extra 10 talent points yet, so this is what I'm using for now:

Shadow

Tier 1
I skipped Blackout because its raiding applications are very limited. It works on some trash, but never bosses. That's a big 'meh' for sure. I went with Spirit Tap and Improved Spirit Tap, because that's going to act as a Shadow Priest's Meditation for now. Finally, Tier 1 of the Shadow tree has something genuinely useful to raiders!

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Filed under: Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

Shifting Perspectives: Moonkin in 3.02 and beyond

Every Tuesday, or possibly Thursday when the writer realizes that nobody writing about moonkin DPS on the internet agrees with each other, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting druids and those who group with them. This week Allison Robert, having Hibernated John Patricelli and run away as fast as her laser-chicken legs will carry her, examines the new moonkin talents and glyphs in 3.02 and Wrath.

I do apologize about the wait here, folks. There's been a lot of contradictory information from both the beta and an array of Druid bloggers on how moonkin are shaping up for Wrath. While a lot of this is just the normal ebb and flow of changes in the alpha and beta, most of it is fueled by a few new talents and the set of glyphs that will become available. All of these have the potential to seriously impact your gameplay and rotation choices, so Balance DPS is going to be (at least, from current appearances) a lot twitchier and more proc-dependent than its counterpart in the feral tree. In addition, you'll probably have to make a few hard choices that will be affected by what your raid's going to need from you (although there is a truly amazing talent deep in the balance tree that, no matter what else you pick, is going to be a significant raid DPS contribution). As Balance is the only spec that I haven't gotten to raid on, I didn't want to go live with this until trying to figure out which pieces of information were accurate and which ones weren't. Bear in mind that Blizzard is still tinkering with Balance as I write this.

For the guide to feral in 3.02, head here; for the guide to resto in 3.02, head here. You'll probably want to be familiar with the resto changes, as balance has traditionally depended on a few key talents in that tree, some of which have changed. Otherwise, read on for a comprehensive look at balance's new talents, updated skills, and glyphs!

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Filed under: Night Elves, Tauren, Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Expansions, Raiding, Guides, Classes, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Wrath of the Lich King

Shadow Priest changes and glyphs in beta build 8962

Last night's beta patch brought a new round of Shadow Priest changes and glyphs (along with every other class), some good and some bad. Some of them are rather exciting like the addition of Devouring Plague to our repertoire and the changes to Dispersion, but I'll let you dig right into things.
  • Devouring Plague cooldown has been reduced to 30 seconds (down from 3 minutes) and has had its mana cost greatly reduced.
Holy cow. Not only did they make the awesome move of finally getting rid of the horridly unbalanced Priest racials, but Devouring Plague will now be firmly in every Shadow Priest's damage rotation. Not only will this be a solid DPS boost, but the healing on it will be fantastic to offset how often we Shadow Priests like to punch ourselves in the face.

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Filed under: Priest, PvP, Wrath of the Lich King

Shadow Priests beaten to death in the Wrath beta

It has taken me a few tries to talk about Shadow Priests today, because I've had a difficult time even wrapping my mind around last night's Wrath Beta patch. It was one of those dreaded "balancing" patches, in which everything and everyone is brutally beaten with nerfs to bring their damage in line. The only problem with that is Shadow Priests were beaten just as hard, if not harder than many other classes, long before we ever had anything resembling competitive damage.

Edit: It looks like this is mostly being reverted, so the changes in this content patch were ultimately completely arbtirary and baseless. If you're still curious as to what those changes were, keep reading.

Let's look at what this patch had in store for us, shall we?
  • Fade now only has one rank, and it temporarily drops all of your threat.
Well, this is good. You can make as many arguments for the old Fade as you want, but it was just dumb. A tiny temporary threat drop that didn't scale was a pain to use, even if it was possible to use. Just because you can use something doesn't mean it's especially effective. I like this change. However...

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Filed under: Priest, Analysis / Opinion, Wrath of the Lich King

Misery slightly less miserable

Last night's beta push, 8905, introduced another change to Misery. The former 5 point talent has gone through a number of changes already, and the latest one seems to be an attempt at healing the wounds of its previous nerf.

As of 8905, Misery now supplies its 3% spell hit as well as a 15% spell power coefficient increase on Mind Flay, Mind Sear, and Mind Blast. It will be interesting to see how this plays out, and just how much a difference that makes. The original version of Misery was 5% spell damage across the entire raid, including your personal damage. Mind Blast and Mind Flay are definitely huge sources of a Shadow Priest's damage, but it's less than half of the spells used in our damage 'rotation.'

Will 15% more damage on those spells make up for the loss of 5% damage on all spells, as far as your personal damage is concerned? It's certainly possible, probably even likely. While the damage from Shadow Word: Pain and Shadow Word: Death (especially Pain) shouldn't be underestimated, Blast and Flay are definitely the major players here. Plus we have news that Mind Flay's coefficient is going up and gaining the ability to crit soon, so an extra 15% on that spell will scale very, very well.

Now that Naxxramas has opened up on the beta realms, we should start seeing some numbers and math soon. However, the new Mind Flay isn't implemented yet, so how this scale may completely change when that happens. At the very least, the bare minimum, this is an improvement over what they did to it originally. How much of an improvement remains to be seen.

Edit: Fixed to reflect the talent's wording.

Filed under: Priest, Expansions, Wrath of the Lich King

Misery and company

Yes, this may be the third post I've made in a few days that mentions the Shadow Priest talent Misery. You got a problem with that? Previously on "Eliah talks about Misery:" Misery gets nerfed in the beta from +1/2/3/4/5% spell damage, where it is now, down to +1/2/3% spell hit. Eliah complains that this makes it either required or useless. OK, now that you're all caught up, let's move forward.

In the comments on my last post, several people made the helpful observation that Misery isn't the only debuff that gives +spell hit against the mob. Balance Druids' Improved Faerie Fire is now going to give the same effect of +1/2/3% spell hit (the +melee/ranged hit is getting removed). And of course, in the new raid buff/debuff system, these effects will not stack. So you only need one Shadow priest or one Balance druid to give that +3% spell hit.

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Filed under: Druid, Priest, Raiding, Talents, Buffs, Wrath of the Lich King

The new Misery

Many Shadow Priests are not feeling very good about the state of the class in LK right now. Yes, buffs to DPS are promised. But a lot of our utility has tanked, from Shadow Weaving not affecting other players, to Vampiric Touch being dialed down and given to other classes, to Misery. It's sad, but amusing that a talent named Misery would get nerfed this hard.

Currently, in live, Misery gives 1/2/3/4/5% increased spell damage for all players against targets affected by your Shadow Word: Pain, Mind Flay, and Vampiric Touch. Pretty sweet. As of the latest beta version, it's +1/2/3% spell hit for all players against targets affected by the same spells. The reason this is especially bad (besides that the last two ranks of the talent were removed) is that most casters are hit-capped when they raid, which means that additional spell hit doesn't help them at all.

So either players are going to start gearing assuming Misery will be up – which defeats Blizzard's stated goal of making it so no class is truly essential for a raid – or Misery is going to be worthless most of the time (outside of leveling maybe). This seems like a good case of a broken talent, and so I have every hope that it will get addressed during the beta. But as of right now, Misery is pretty miserable indeed.

Filed under: Priest, Talents, Wrath of the Lich King

One-day credit for Misery (EU)

Firstly, I would like to apologize for the image at right, which is really not directly related. However, the only thing I could think when seeing the battlegroup name was Helium going "Miiiisewy" -- watch these flash videos, especially the first one, and understand.

Now that's out of the way, here's what I meant to talk about. Apparently the realms in the European battlegroup Misery had some maintenance difficulties on May 21st and 28th, and will be compensated by the upstanding people at Blizz with a free day of playtime.

So if you have a character on any of the following realms, enjoy your €0.43 worth of credit:
Aerie Peak, Boulderfist, Eonar, Frostmane, Grim Batol, Jaedenar, Kazzak, Kilrogg, Outland, Ravenholdt, Stonemaul, Tarren Mill, Vek'nilash, and Wildhammer.
Oddly enough, they're also giving a day's worth of rested bonus to affected characters, which is something I haven't seen them do before. I wonder if that's going to be the norm in the future.

Filed under: Realm News, News items

Low level hunter pets to level faster... someday

So there you are, a proud hunter at level 70, and you suddenly realize that you absolutely must have a low-level pet, such as the famous translucent ghost saber? What do you do?

Up till now the conventional answer was: "suffer." Low level pets only gain experience when you kill something around your level range, not theirs, so the only choice is to just bear with it for a very long time while you try to kill high-level monsters with a low-level pet, or else just give up and not do it.

Well finally it looks like Blizzard has in mind something to do about it. Drysc tells us:
We have plans to adjust how quickly a hunter's pet will level if there's a large gap between it and the hunter's level. However, it's still just a plan and not something we've implemented and thus are not ready to discuss it.
Something's going to happen -- we just don't know what it is yet. But really, for hunters anything would be better than what it is now. It's always nice to remove needless tedium don't you think?

Filed under: Hunter, Leveling

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