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Posts with tag moonkin

Well-known druid blogger Lissanna lowers the boom(kin) on autism research

It's only been a couple of weeks since we reported on the crowdsourcing effort to fund the autism research of well-known Restokin blogger and Blizzard MVP poster Lissanna, aka Dr. Elisabeth Whyte of the Laboratory of Developmental Neuroscience at Penn State. So far, supporters have boosted Dr. Whyte to just over a quarter of her funding goal for the project, which focuses on how children and adolescents with autism understand language and process information from faces (such as recognizing people or understanding emotional expressions). Her goal: designing a video game to help kids with autism improve these skills.

How does an MMO-playing grad student transform from anonymous gamer to well-known WoW blogger, Blizzard forum MVP, and Ph.D.-level researcher bringing gamification to the treatment of autism? If you follow the example of this lady: with ease.

WoW Insider: One-fourth of your funding already under your belt -- congratulations! Our readers already know that WoW can be beneficial to kids with autism, so it's exciting to hear about a gamification project designed to help kids with autism.

Lissanna: Many kids and adults with autism seem to enjoy playing video games. We have some evidence that using fun activities can motivate learning. Our goal is to develop and test the efficacy of an educational game that impacts face processing abilities and social skills. With much of the research focused on important early intervention work, there is a huge gap in the services that individuals with autism can receive when they are older. We think that a sophisticated game can fill the need for social skills services targeting older individuals to help with tasks like preparing them for jobs or developing friendships with their peers.

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Filed under: Interviews, 15 Minutes of Fame

Shifting Perspectives: An additional dimension for the balance druid rotation

Shifting Perspectives An additional dimension for the Balance druid rotation
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. Welcome to our DPS edition, brought to you by Chase Hasbrouck, aka Alaron of The Fluid Druid blog. This week, we ready our spreadsheets for battle.

Well, it looks like those who said the balance rotation was dull carried the day. Insect Swarm isn't back, but interesting developments are afoot. A few days ago, Ghostcrawler dropped a minor bombshell on the balance rotation, and I'd like to do a bit of theorycrafting and explore the implications.

Ghostcrawler
We are experimenting with some changes to the rotation. No promises that these changes will stay, but we definitely look forward to your feedback (both in terms of theorycrafting and how fun it is). Shooting Stars should occur much more frequently, and Starsurge should be a more important (read: high damage) button. Additionally, we're adding a new passive that has some interesting implications. Should you choose to ignore it, your DPS will likely be only a few percentage behind someone who uses it optimally, but it should hopefully provide some more varied gameplay. To use some game designer jargon, we're happy with Moonkins' macro level rotational gameplay, but think they needs some more mirco-level decisions.
  • Shooting Stars chance increased from 20% to 50%.
  • Starsurge damage increased by 30%.
  • Fae Empowerment: New passive for Balance Druids. When you cast Faerie Fire, you gain Lunar Empowerment and Solar Empowerment.
  • Lunar Empowerment: Increases the damage of your next 3 Starfires within 15 sec by 15%.
  • Solar Empowerment: Increases the damage of your next 3 Wraths within 15 sec by 20%.
Please note that these changes are straight DPS buffs, and we don't think Moonkin need a buff right now, so we need to reduce overall damage (probably across the board) so that overall DPS stays the same. These nerfs may take a few builds, because we need to evaluate if these rotation changes are worth doing.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: The potential return of Insect Swarm for balance druids

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Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. Welcome to our DPS edition, brought to you by Chase Hasbrouck, aka Alaron of The Fluid Druid blog. This week, we go hunting for mosquito nets.

A few weeks ago, I talked about the impact of removing Insect Swarm from balance druids' toolboxes. I was pretty positive about the change; in my view, Insect Swarm was mostly superfluous, as the times you would use it independently from Moonfire were few and far between. Removing it was a welcome simplification to the rotation. Several commenters took an opposite view, however. To them, removing IS (along with some of the other changes) took things too far, and made the spec boring to play.

Well, if you were one of those commenters, you're in luck. Take it away, Ghostcrawler!

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Mists of Pandaria Beta: Horde and Alliance Incarnation moonkin forms

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Things just got real in the Mists of Pandaria beta, folks. With the most recent patch, the new moonkin forms for the druid talent Incarnation have hit MMO-Champion. I don't really have much to say other than Blizzard just might be opening a can of worms here for druid players. Armored moonkin forms actually look pretty awesome.

Druids, run with this one. While Incarnation is going to have its own special models, attaching armor to the existing moonkin form might have proven easier than imagined. Could druids get the option in the future to augment their forms with their own armor choices? Not yet, but Incarnation's forms are already shaping up to be pretty exciting for druids. Now, to dust off my druid ...

Filed under: Druid, Mists of Pandaria

Shifting Perspectives: 5 moonkin issues that need fixing

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Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. Welcome to our DPS edition, brought to you by Chase Hasbrouck, aka Alaron of The Fluid Druid blog. This week, we go fast and furry.

Well, it's happened again. Once more, I intended for this week to be a first look at balance druids in Mists of Pandaria, but as I wrote the article, I felt that much of it was lacking the proper context. Since we haven't had a moonkin post around here in some time, I'd like to step back briefly and discuss some of the issues with the specialization that were identified going into the new expansion. Next week, we'll discuss the changes Blizzard is implementing on the beta and how they fix (or don't fix!) the issues I've described here.

Overpowered AoE/multitarget rotation For the majority of the expansion, balance druids were one of the best AoE DPS classes in the game. This was due largely to two factors, the relative strength of the moonkin DoT abilities plus Wild Mushroom and the ability to remain in a Solar Eclipse nearly indefinitely during AoE phases to buff those two abilities (aka solarcleave). Even for non-AoE fights, it was still very easy for moonkin to supplement their damage on their primary target with DoTs on a secondary target. Heroic Morchok and Warmaster Blackhorn are excellent examples of this for this tier.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Check out the DC Series 8 and Premium Series 4 action figures

Blizzard sent the WoW Insider offices a batch of the brand new DC Series 8 and Premium Series 4 action figures to play around with. As a guy who is currently typing words on a World of Warcraft blog, you can imagine that I appreciate the occasional action figure. I've been impressed with the detail on the DC series in the past, especially the Garrosh and Lady Vashj figures, and was excited to see these up close. Check out this gallery of shots that I took at an expensive studio space in a trendy area in Brooklyn.

DC WoW action figures series 8 includes:
  • Confessor Dhalia
  • Brink Spannercrank vs. Snaggle
  • The Black Knight
DC WoW premium series 4 includes:
  • Moonkin: Wildmoon
  • Hallow's End Nemesis: The Headless Horseman


Also, since I used to be a huge fan of ToyFare magazine and Twisted ToyFare Theater back in 1999, I went ahead and did my own.

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Filed under: Blizzard

Shifting Perspectives: What balance druid design can take from SWTOR

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or requests to tyler@wowinsider.com or @murmursofadruid.

Welcome to a new year, balance druids. It's been a flurry of a holiday season for many folks, although things have been rather quiet on the Blizzard front. In terms of any new information being released, all that we've seen thus far is a minor patch announcement that does hold some good news: Our four-piece tier bonus is getting 10% Starsurge damage tacked on. While this isn't monumental in the sense that it suddenly turns the bonus into a must-have, it's a good boost that was sorely needed.

Instead, the major release of the holiday season was the highly anticipated release of Star Wars: The Old Republic, which I myself have been glad to officially have my hands on. WoW-killer, front-runner MMO of the new year, or potential flop, it's far too soon to tell -- but what is telling is how new game designers approach the MMO genre and what Blizzard can learn as other companies look to emulate its success stories. What then could SWTOR possibly have for balance druids? Quite a bit.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

WoW Moviewatch: Sex, Moonkinology and Space Culture: Fear & Loathing in Moonglade

The good Baron Soosdon describes this video as a scientific reproduction of what you feel being hit by Moonfire. Instead of a few seconds of analysis, however, Soosdon provides a long, 7-minute review of the strobing, painful experience.

There's no sex in Sex, Moonkinology and Space Culture: Fear & Loathing in Moonglade. It's a long, trippy right through Moonglade and elven forests, completely with dancing Moonkin and spectacular colors. This video should be avoided by those with epilepsy. Everyone else with an appreciation for Soosdon's unique and powerful style should click right away and go for an amazing ride.

Interested in the wide world of machinima? We have new movies every weekday here on WoW Moviewatch! Have suggestions for machinima we ought to feature? Toss us an email at moviewatch@wowinsider.com.

Filed under: WoW Moviewatch

Shifting Perspectives: Lunar Shower update and Celestial Alignment

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or requests to tyler@wowinsider.com or @murmursofadruid.

Balance druids everywhere are currently rejoicing. Why, might you ask? Well, you see, the Eclipse energy portion of Lunar Shower has finally been removed from the Mists of Pandaria talent calculator. That it took this long is something else entirely, but that isn't even really the point.

First, I wish to express a slight personal issue with this revelation. When the Pandaria talent calculators were originally released, it was stated directly that Lunar Shower would be "working differently in the future." While I suppose accurate on the most technical levels, reverting a broken talent to the slightly less broken state that it was already in before it was made worse is not working differently.

A bit harsh? To say that Lunar Shower is a broken talent, to suggest that it was always a broken talent? Well, I would apologize or choose better language -- however, this is the case. Lunar Shower has never truly fulfilled the function it was intended to serve, to offer balance druids a mobile DPS option. In defense that the current Lunar Shower on the live servers now is broken, I don't really think I need to put forth much evidence. After all, no one specs into it. Every single guide tells players to avoid it. And there's at least a thread a week complaining about it on the official forums. The issue speaks for itself.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Patch 4.3 gear list for balance druids

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or requests for something you'd like to see to tyler@wowinsider.com or on Twitter @murmursofadruid.

Hail, druids, and welcome to the wondrous world of a new patch! This patch didn't hold much for us in the ways of personal meat. We got a wicked-awesome new Hurricane animation and a neat new Wrath one as well, but otherwise, things trudge along as normal with our lot. That's perfectly dandy in my book. We're still going along strong as a solid DPS choice, and things are good.

This week I'm dedicating to gearing ourselves up in all of that lovely new content that has just been released. Whether you're a dungeoneer or a hardcore raider, there's tons of new loot to look at, and that's exactly that we're going to do. As a side note, I do have to say that I am super-excited about having patch 4.3. The content so far has been gloriously fun, and though I'm sure I'll change my mind once I've done enough of these heroics to last a lifetime (as with the troll versions of last patch), I'm content to make do with what we have. Let's get to work, shall we?

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: The matter of Mists talents and abilities

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or requests for something you'd like to see to tyler@wowinsider.com or on Twitter @murmursofadruid.

Druids, friends, brothers and sisters, we need to have a right good talk. Earlier in the week, Blizzard released the ability list and talent calculator for every class and spec in the next expansion. As we all knew, there were many significant changes that were made in terms of what abilities each spec received and, in some cases, how these abilities worked. Oddly enough, this seemed to cause something of an uproar within the druid community over several choice changes. It's strange to me that a community preaching patience quickly froths at the mouth, but fret not, nothing is nearly as bad as it seems.

The changes are massive -- of that there is no doubt -- but at the core, everything that we've known is still there. The majority of the balance druid spec as it exists today is virtually intact; as far as changes could go, this is close to the best that we could have hoped for. There are still tweaks that should be made, but those shall come in time. For now, allow me assuage your fears.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives, Mists of Pandaria

Shifting Perspectives: First look at tier 13 for balance druids

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or something you'd like to see to tyler@wowinsider.com.

Welcome back, druids! Last week, we started the discussion on how to properly read and review your World of Logs parses in order to spot any places where you might be having issues. While I would like to complete that series, recent events rather pushed that back for the moment. In case you aren't in the know for some strange reason, Blizzard has released patch 4.3 onto the PTR and with it, a slew of new information.

For good or ill, there hasn't been any balance druid information as of yet. Druids for the most part remained pretty much untouched, with the only spec seeing any changes being a minor restoration nerf. We have, however, seen the set bonuses for the upcoming tier 13, and that alone is enough to worry about. Normally, I'm rather passive when it comes to set bonuses; they are bonuses, after all. While some might be weak or strong, generally sets are pretty well balanced. This time around, though? I'm left with my head scratching to figure out what Blizzard was thinking. Let's take a look at why.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Reviewing World of Logs parses, part 1

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or something you'd like to see to tyler@wowinsider.com.

Greetings, druids. This week, I'll be pulling out an email request for the discussion topic, which is great as we wait for more 4.3 information. There's always tons of requests by players for others to review their damage because they don't quite measure up to where they think that they should be. While there are guides a-plenty all across the internet, one of things often not mentioned is how to make these reviews yourself. Asking for help is a great step, but as the adage goes, it is often better to teach a man to fish rather than to merely give him one.

What am I talking about? Reading through damage reports, of course! We always talk about how to deal damage and what you should be doing, but we all know that encounters are chaotic. Even the best of us can't hold to what's technically the best option in any given situation. To that end, we'll be discussing those things to look out for in log reports in order to determine where it might be that you might having a few slip-ups. Hold on to your hats -- this one is going to be a thrill!

Disclaimer: While there are multiple sites out there designed to track this form of data, we'll be focusing exclusively on World of Logs. Finding many of the items that you need can be hidden in different parts of different sites; WoL holds everything that you need and in easy-to-find locations. If you use another site, you may have to look in different locations for the information you need.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Balance druid feedback

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or something you'd like to see to tyler@wowinsider.com.

Early on in the week, Blizzard started threads in each of the class forums on the official website asking for players to provide feedback regarding their classes and specs in preparation for 4.3 and the next expansion. For any of you who have not yet posted, I highly encourage you to go do so. No matter how late it may seem or how buried among the pages your post might end up, Blizzard representatives will be reading those threads, and it is the absolute best opportunity for you to let the development team know how it is you feel. They expected that these threads would grow to a vast size; they're prepared to handle the volume of feedback and report their findings.

I, too, have posted in that thread, stating what it is I think and feel about balance druids. In doing so, however, I felt that I was rather limited by the system in which I was posting. Writing for balance druids every week, it's obvious that I've got a lot to say about the spec, so attempting to cram all those thoughts into a condensed forum post was difficult. This week, I'd like to take the opportunity to expand upon the feedback I provided, and invite you once again to go and leave your own.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Avoid these common balance druid mistakes

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat , bear , restoration and balance druids. Balance news comes at you every Friday -- learn how to master the forces of nature, and know what it means to be a giant laser turkey! Send questions, comments, or something you'd like to see to tyler@wowinsider.com.

Welcome back, my little space turkeys. It's been a fun couple of weeks here recently with all sorts of nothing announced for us. Despite Blizzard's new plan to be speedy like the rabbit, it doesn't quite seem to have gotten a handle on what that actually means. Information about the next patch in slow in the making, and all that we have gotten so far hasn't really been of any use to us here in constantly-in-the-shape-of-a-fat-mutant-chicken-form-land. Shouldn't complain, I suppose. It could be worse -- it could be raining. Oh wait ... it is raining.

This week, in light of the dreary New England mood that's been permeating my area for the past few days, we'll be going over some of the common mistakes that balance druids make (and sometimes those who think they know balance druids). I'm not entirely sure how the weather is related to this topic, but I promise you, the correlation is there. Prepare for a mildly exciting read that's also rather informative -- like a science textbook only better, and it doesn't cost you several hundred dollars.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

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