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Posts with tag patch-3.1-class-changes

Arcane Brilliance: Okay, now I like spirit



Each week Arcane Brilliance glances around to make sure there are no Death Knights in the area, then daintily tiptoes out from cover long enough to throw together a column about Mages. Usually, this ends badly for Arcane Brilliance. Out of nowhere, a big purple rope-looking thingy wraps itself around Arcane Brilliance's neck and drags it backward into a big stabby implement of some type. Arcane Brilliance tries to fight back, but finds it has been silenced three different ways and the Death Knight that just jumped it has enclosed them both beneath some kind of ugly anti-magic igloo. So, Arcane Brilliance no longer want to hear any complaints about misspelled words or grammatical errors. Arcane Brilliance is simply too busy getting ganked by Death Knights to proofread. I swear.

When I posted on Wednesday about the giant Mage Q&A session hosted by the developers, I was cautiously optimistic. The developers repeatedly assured Mages in that Q&A thread that they were keeping a close eye on our performance on the PTR, that a lot of our concerns would shake themselves out as we continued along through the testing process. Chief among these concerns of late has been the nerf to Molten Armor and its glyph, a change that tied the formerly static 5% crit buff those offered to spirit and turned out to be a nerf to the large majority of Mages and a slight buff to only the most well-geared among us. As nerfs went, it wasn't the most devastating one in recent memory, but was disproportionately reviled by Mages because it forced us to pay attention to a stat that was otherwise of little value to us. In the Q&A thread, we were told that the developers were aware of our concerns and would consider upping the spirit-to-crit conversion rate if they felt it necessary. I remained positive, but wasn't exactly holding my breath.

It appears I needn't have been skeptical. The latest PTR build already reflects a few very nice changes for those of us who like to wear robes, waggle sticks in the air, and hurl large flaming orbs of magical death at Warlocks. That's right, my fellow Mages: It appears the nerf-train has at least temporarily run itself off the rails. Follow me after the break, and we'll go over the specific changes.

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Filed under: Mage, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Features, Classes, Buffs, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

Arcane Brilliance: I still don't like spirit



Each week Arcane Brilliance delivers a column about Mages to you, and you, in turn, deliver Mages to the column. Thank you, Mages. Some of you deliver Warlocks to the column. Screw you, Warlocks.

Wow. Just a warning: I got done watching the series finale of Battlestar Galactica like 5 minutes ago, and I cried like a little girl like 12 times throughout. I'll try to keep it together long enough to successfully complete this column, but holy crap. That was some pretty stirring stuff right there. Let it be known that I'm not too big a nerd to completely lose it during the final episode of BSG. Wait...maybe that actually makes me a bigger nerd? I don't know. I'd like to think there are bigger dorks than me out there, and they're probably twittering about plot holes and scientific inaccuracies and how Ron Moore is the antichrist or whatever as we speak. At least I'm not doing that. I'm bawling like a baby, but I'm not nerd-raging about a sci-fi show on the interwebs, right? Now if you'll excuse me, I have to write a column about the latest nerfs to the Mage class in World of Warcraft.

Seriously, patch 3.1 can't come soon enough, as far as I'm concerned. You know why? Because when it arrives, it'll mean Blizzard is finally done nerfing us.

Now, granted, Mages on the live servers are definitely on the good side of the class-balance pendulum right now, so it makes a certain amount of sense, given Blizzard's never-ending quest to make everything in the game identical, that we were going to see a few nerfs. Knowing that doesn't make watching it happen any more fun. It's sort of like having a gangrenous limb amputated, only having to be fully awake throughout the operation, and having it take place bit by bit over the course of several months. For frak's sake, just knock us out and don't wake us 'til it's over. You can find the details on this week's chopping--along with my feelings on it--after the break. Bring some novocain, won't you?

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Filed under: Mage, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Features, Classes, Talents, Buffs, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

Arcane Brilliance: Q to the power of Q



Each week Arcane Brilliance runs out of mana halfway through a column about Mages. Seriously, Arcane Brilliance is terrible at managing its mana. And then every time it Evocates, Arcane Brilliance manages to get interrupted before it gets any mana back. It really sucks. Yep, Arcane Brilliance spends a lot of time wanding. To be honest, Arcane Brilliance is probably about one more wipe away from getting kicked out of its guild. LTP, Arcane Brilliance...LTP.

I tried my best to be optimistic last week, to look at the changes to Fiery Payback and Impact (especially Impact) as semi-good things. The Fiery Payback-disarm effect will be marginally positive, I told myself, and at the very least, Impact being triggered by Fire Blast will make the spell less random and more controllable, right? We Mages get such a reputation for being whiners that I try to steer clear of pessimism as much as a can just to avoid being lumped in with that lame generalization. I try, and most of the time I fail, but I award myself an "A" for effort.

The comments section set me straight last week. Fire Mages are not happy with Blizzard's attempt at improving their survivability in PvP. You guys were brutally frank in your comments, and I have to admit that I see your point. Nobody likes dying, but as a Fire Mage you sort of expect it, similar to the way nobody likes getting tackled, but as a football player you know it comes with the territory. All Fire Mages want is to be able to dish out an acceptable amount of pain before they explode. In fact, a lot of you proposed the idea of allowing Fire Mages to literally explode upon death, making killing one a dangerous proposition. Several of you commented that this was a Fire Mage's idea of survivability, to die, but leave a smoking crater behind. Seriously, this is an idea I can get behind.

Here's the thing, though: If you weren't happy with the changes last week, you really aren't going to like the latest PTR build. Follow me through the break and we'll talk ourselves through the changes. I'll try to keep the tears to a minimum.

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Filed under: Mage, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Features, Classes, Talents, (Mage) Arcane Brilliance

WoW Patch 3.1 PTR Druid changes


All right, Druids. I've been rolled out of bed to come look at the new PTR test notes, because apparently this is a big deal or something. As far as I'm concerned, all important business can wait until a reasonable hour in the morning, like 3 PM, but because this site is run by crazy people here I am.

So let's go skim the patch notes quickly -- /flick flick flick -- and try to answer the most important question first:

Is Tauren cat form still in the game?

/flick flick

Yes.

Man, %*#$ this patch.

Leaving aside this EGREGIOUS OMISSION, we're going to take a look at the preliminary Druid changes in patch 3.1 past the cut here, and courtesy of Michael Sacco and some data-mining gnomes, we also have the Druid Tier 8 shoulder graphic, which is pretty cool and reminds me a lot of Tier 5. I'm also seeing some undocumented changes in the game files off MMO Champion, but I'll have to examine those later today. I haven't been able to get on the PTR yet, so I can't confirm whether these changes have actually gone live on the test realm.

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Filed under: Druid, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Features, Guides, Classes

Big changes for Hunters in patch 3.1

Not quite as unique as it was before.No more quivers, no more pouches, no more bullets to make us slouches. Ok, so I'm terrible at poetry, but you get the picture. This has been on a lot of Hunters' wish lists for a long time, but it's finally here. No more ammo.

Or rather, ammo will be an item more like a relic or a wand that modifies our ranged weapon damage without being consumed. Engineers, that means you better make hay while the sun shines. Soon, we'll be buying our last crate of Mammoth Cutters ever.

This is far from the only changed announced tonight -- or this morning, depending on where you are. Let's look at them all one by one.

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Filed under: Hunter, Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Instances, Raiding, Bosses, Talents, Buffs, Wrath of the Lich King

Death Knight class change analysis for patch 3.1

The next round of class changes for 3.1 has gone up, and Death Knights, of course, got a blurb of their own. The changes are probably slightly less sweeping than some other classes, but interesting all the same. Ghostcrawler's word on Death Knights lately has been that they're probably a bit high on DPS, and that they want to encourage more people to spec Blood and Frost over the overwhelmingly popular Unholy. I'm not sure these changes in particular did that, but one thing they did do is give a couple of nice potential buffs to Death Knight tanks. Let's look at them one by one.

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Filed under: Patches, Analysis / Opinion, News items, Raiding, Talents, Buffs, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Patch 3.1 class changes for Mages, Hunters, Death Knights, and Paladins

As expected, tonight we're getting a sampling of the class changes for Mages, Hunters, Death Knights, and Paladins. This comes after a day of more 3.1 class changes.

Big changes from this release include:
  • Consumable ammunition removed from the game!
  • Hunter's will get additional trap talents via the Survival tree
  • Mages will now have a mana replenishment spell
  • Paladin's Blessing of Kings is now a base ability
  • Paladin's Exorcism will now damage all enemy types
  • Death Knight's Pestilence will now only spread diseases
The headline for tomorrow will be the line "Consumable ammunition has been removed from the game." In fact, that'll be the the headline for the next few days.

After the break are all the changes released thus far.

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Filed under: Hunter, Mage, Paladin, News items, Death Knight

Analysis of Warlock changes in 3.1

By now, Warlocks, you've probably had a chance to take a look at the announced changes for patch 3.1. If you're late to the party, come in, I'll take your coat; Blizzard have announced some of the changes they'll be making to the Warlock class in the upcoming 3.1 content patch. Keeping in mind that this list is incomplete (they'll be making more changes, count on it) and subject to change (on the PTR, etc.), let's talk about what they've revealed so far.

Improved Shadow Bolt – this talent now provides a 5% spell critical strike buff (similar to Improved Scorch)

This goes along with what they were saying about Imp Scorch being too much of a "unique snowflake." It also restores group utility to a talent that had it stripped away in 3.0. I like it, a lot. This is also early enough in the tree that almost any warlock can pick it up if their raid needs it.

Improved Soul Leech – this talent now provides Replenishment (similar to shadow priests)

Has Blizz been reading my posts? I'm really glad that they're spreading Replenishment around. And Destruction could use a little bit of mana-back utility itself. Warlocks have always been the utility caster, and this is just stacking that higher and higher. Keep it coming, I say.

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Filed under: Warlock, Patches, Analysis / Opinion

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