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Posts with tag resto-druid

WoW Archivist: Launch classes' 9 biggest aggravations, part 2

PallyPower
WoW Archivist explores the secrets of World of Warcraft's past. What did the game look like years ago? Who is etched into WoW's history? What secrets does the game still hold?

Vanilla WoW is properly considered the golden age of this beloved MMO. The evolutionary ideas behind the game were exciting, the art style was fresh, and the world was full of mysteries. Some yearn for a return to that time. But many forget that classes at launch suffered from some truly aggravating designs. Last time on Archivist, we looked at priest racials, hunter mana, warlock shard farming, and shaman weapon skill resets. This week, we review the most aggravating aspects of warriors, mages, druids, rogues, and paladins.

Warriors: The leather conundrum

Let's be fair: warriors, for the most part, had it pretty good in vanilla. Back then, they were the only class that could viably tank and their DPS was better than most hybrids. Rage had its share of problems early on, it's true, but the mechanic worked -- warriors just needed more of it. Stance dancing was annoying to some but the mark of a pro to others. Warriors also had a crippling bug at launch that would register all enemy dodges and parries as misses, preventing skills like Overpower from ever proc'ing. The bug made early leveling painful, but it was solved a few months after launch.

The biggest aggravation for warriors throughout vanilla -- and beyond -- was leather.

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Filed under: WoW Archivist

Resto druids vs. the world 2: War harder

Resto druids vs the world, round two War harder TUE
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we may hate numbers, but oh, they add so much to our lives.

Story time!

I first got a lesson on how to read healing meters while raiding Serpentshrine Cavern. One of our healers, an otherwise very competent holy priest, consistently ran OOM early on Morogrim Tidewalker and was next to useless during the final phase of the fight. The head of the heal team took an hour to look over the logs, and decided to give me a lesson on how to read them while doing so. It quickly became apparent that the priest was unwittingly covering for a resto shaman, who not only wasn't pulling his weight, but also seemed to take an unusual amount of damage.

"Why aren't you doing anything during the add phases?" asked the head, a paladin.

"Because our off-tank can't hold aggro for s$#t and I'm tired of dying to murlocs."

This was actually true. Our head healer pondered for a moment. "Can't you just Chain Heal after he's already gotten all the murlocs?"

"No, I die that way too. And we have to save BoP for the clothies who have to AOE the murlocs." Also true.

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

Resto druids vs. the world: Healer balance in tier 14

Resto druids vs the world Healer balance in tier 14
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. Today, it isn't enough that mistweavers are taking our gear -- now they're taking our jobs.

The beginning of an expansion is usually a bad time to write deep, meaningful, and typically pompous posts on the "state of the class" and whither the druid and all that crap. For that matter, the beginning of Mists of Pandaria struck me as an especially bad time, because so much of what we were used to in WoW got changed and sent everyone scrambling. Toss in a brand-new hybrid class (the monk), and you've got the perfect storm of elements that make evaluating healer performance a dicey proposition at best. I poured myself a nice cocoa, kept an eye on World of Logs and Raidbots, and watched as the numbers rolled in and a legion of holy priests tore their garments and cried out in despair.

Given that patch 5.1's now live, it seems an appropriate time to swirl that cocoa, take a look at how healers did in tier 14, and ask what's likely to change. As of now, it seems apparent that:
  • Holy priests were actually right.
  • Monks kicked your dog, seduced your mom, stole your XBox, and drove off in your car.
  • Paladins are still topping the charts on certain encounters, but they're no longer dominating all of them.
  • Shaman have improved a lot from their lackluster performance in Dragon Soul.
  • Resto druids are back in same boat we were in at the beginning of Cataclysm, and it's not a very nice boat.
Just for fun, here's a Shifting I wrote almost a year ago on healer balance in Dragon Soul, if you'd like to see how classes fared in the last tier of raid content.

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

Shifting Perspectives: Resto's dismal PvP performance, and why it might get better

Shifting Perspectives Resto's dismal PvP performance, and why it might get better
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, death is common to all trees.

I'm not much of a PvP player. I enjoy random battlegrounds, particularly when I'm healbotting someone who cares whether I live or die, but I lack a certain something when it comes to better performance. I think that something is called talent, or perhaps just luck. We might even call it gear. Regardless, I'm not a great PvPer, so I usually sit on the sidelines and observe while the people who are great PvPers argue about arena team composition and rated battleground strategy. These people have not been enthusiastic about restoration druids in Cataclysm.

That's not normal. Resto has been a strong PvP spec since season two of The Burning Crusade (although we need to make an exception for the dismal season five at the beginning of Wrath of the Lich King), so it was a surprise to see such widespread ambivalence among the PvP population. However, there does seem to be a broad consensus about why resto has so many problems in PvP, and people are cautiously optimistic that Mists of Pandaria will be better.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Lifebloom is like broccoli, and other lies my mother told me

Shifting Perspectives Lifebloom is like broccoli, and other lies my mother told me TUESDAY
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, Lifebloom prevents vitamin deficiencies.

When I was a small child growing up on the mean streets of a rural farming community, my mother used to hector me into eating my vegetables.

"You'll get rickets if you don't eat your broccoli," she said.

"Children in some parts of the world would kill to have string beans," she said.

"You'll flunk your SATs if you don't eat zucchini," she said.

So I'd choke the stuff down in resentful silence, assuming that dessert would be forthcoming in the typical quid pro quo of the childhood dinner table. (My lawyer father lived to regret teaching that phrase to small children.) It took me until freshman biology to realize that my mother was exaggerating the odds of developing scurvy if we didn't eat a sufficient quantity of vegetables at every meal.

And you know what? Playing a resto druid on the beta is kind of like being a small child getting Lifebloom and Harmony endlessly stuffed into your face. In the meantime, there's a bowl of deep-fried, bacon-crusted, chocolate-dipped Wild Mushrooms just ... out ... of ... your ... reach on the table.

I ate the green stuff, Blizz. Now where's my dessert?

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Breakfast Topic: Dumb things are fun

Image
Opinions were pretty mixed when druids lost permanent Tree Form going into Cataclysm, but two distinct camps emerged. Lots of people who'd been playing since classic WoW resented having to be in a low-poly model all the time just to be competitive with other healers. Others really liked playing a tree, missed the form, and have sulked their way through Cataclysm with only temporary access to the (admittedly awesome) Captain Disco Soul Patch Groovy Tree.

When Glyph of the Treant was introduced on the Mists of Pandaria beta, I was among those who hurried to glyph it in order to enjoy the form again and subsequently found myself running around Azshara like an idiot, one-shotting the mobs as a tree again. I have difficulty defending this. It literally adds nothing whatsoever to the class. It takes up a valuable glyph slot, gives no combat advantage, and exists only to be enjoyed.

And then I realized -- a lot of the stuff I've liked about Mists has absolutely nothing to do with the druid's combat effectiveness. Something that contributes to tanking, healing, or DPS always has to be balanced with other classes, and a degree of homogenization results because you can't have wildly different mechanics without usually getting wildly different results. Something that doesn't contribute to combat can just exist to be fun and doesn't have to be balanced with similar abilities elsewhere.

What skills, spells, or abilities does your class have that are only for fun? And on a more thoughtful note, would the game benefit from more "dumb stuff"?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Shifting Perspectives: I am starting to hate resto druids

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, one of our specs appears to be faring better than others. Much, much better.

Certain people have it made. For example, a relative of mine phoned the other night to let us know that she's thinking about buying a beach property in Costa Rica and that in order to supplement her six-figure commodity broker's salary, she'll probably rent it out whenever she isn't there to surf and drink mojitos herself. "Gotta go," she said. "I think the Mercedes dealership is trying to call me back."

Now, this is a fairly soul-destroying thing to hear, and not just because you had to interrupt a shouting match with your family over getting a real job in order to go look up Costa Rica on a map. But let's be fair: Nobody gets that lucky by accident. Does it involve hard work? Yep. But it also involves the ability to zero in on a path in life that pays out like a broken slot machine, and then tireless effort to keep your boxcar hitched to the gravy train. Let's not blame the folks who are simply more astute than we are at picking one of life's better roads.

After a little more than a week in the Mists of Pandaria beta, something has become horribly obvious: If this relative ever picked up WoW, she'd be playing a resto druid.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

What might Mists of Pandaria mean for healing?

Mists of Pandaria is something of a scary thought for the future of many healers. The introduction of another class that is capable of tanking, DPSing and healing marks a potential destabilizing factor. While it is scary, it is also exciting to a lot of players. Shaking things up isn't always a bad thing, and it has the potential to introduce some very different playstyles. The most important question, though, is what the addition of another healing class could potentially mean for how the other healing classes play and are balanced.

The introduction of the monk class has the potential to trigger a series of changes that could wind up being seen across all of the healing classes -- that is, depending on the reception it receives. These changes are things that some healers might not have considered or further expanding of particular mechanics that are already in game. With that said, it's time for a bit of speculation!

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Filed under: Monk, Mists of Pandaria

Shifting Perspectives: When healers run out of options

Tree of Life in patch 4.3's new heroic 5-man, End Time.
Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, the upcoming Wild Growth nerf gets us thinking.

As with our previous Shifting Perspectives on tanking and healing the Zandalari 5-mans introduced in patch 4.2, I'd like to run an edition on tanking and healing the new Hour of Twilight, Well of Eternity, and End Time heroics. While I prep that, we've been left with an unpleasant but perhaps not totally unexpected nerf to Wild Growth as of last week's PTR patch notes.

Let us be frank, my brethren. Is Wild Growth overpowered? Yep.

Is it doing too much healing for too little effort? Probably. When even I can keep your ungemmed, unenchanted premade group's collective ass alive on my first trip into a new heroic despite getting lost and arriving at the group a minute late, a spell is way too good.

But is that completely irrelevant to why Wild Growth is really a problem? Yep.

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

The Light and How to Swing It: Synergizing with druids and shaman

shaman paladin druid
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Every Sunday, Chase Christian invites you to discuss the finer side of the paladin class: the holy specialization. Feel free to email me with any questions you want answered, like why paladins are so awesome.

When I asked my favorite restoration shaman (David the shaman) what the resto spec's weaknesses were, he had listed off several areas he'd like to see improved. I posed the same question to a restoration druid, and he replied back with an emphatic "There isn't one!" Restoration druids are currently the most powerful healers in the game, and by a large margin.

Every other healing class might pale in comparison to a druid's massive HPS capabilities, but resto druids aren't the indomitable healers that they might think themselves to be. Holy paladins have a diverse and robust toolkit of spells that allows us to complement restoration druids and shaman. We can focus on each class' strengths and weaknesses to choose our healing spells and strategies effectively. We learned how the two priest healing specs vary and how to work with each, and now we'll cover the two restoration healers.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Shifting Perspectives: The druid personality test

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we are impressed by the scientific rigor of human interest publications.

So I was in line at the grocery store the other day when the array of magazines at the checkout stand caught my eye. Useless People Weekly was running a quiz that promised to tell you things you already knew about yourself if you would consent to answer several questions and tally the results.

"Huh," said I. "What a marvelously scientific approach." But it gave me, as they say, ideas.

If you've never played a druid before, are you interested in knowing which spec best suits your personality? If you play a druid, are you interested in being told things you already know about yourself?

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Filed under: Druid, Humor, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Haste and you -- a guide to not wanting to kill yourself

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we had to Google the Goldilocks story because we kept getting it wrong.

Once upon a time, a blogger ventured into a magical forest in search of a stat known as haste. In the forest, there was a cottage where a family of three bears -- Papa Bear, Mama Bear, and Baby Bear -- all lived. So the blogger --

"Hey, wait a minute," said the bears. "We don't care about haste. Haste is terrible. Clear off."

So the blogger left the bears' cottage and ventured deeper into the forest, eventually finding a family of trees, which was interesting insofar as the forest was itself comprised of trees, and by all rights, this made no sense. Like the bears, the trees were a family unit with the requisite Papa Tree, Mama Tree, and Baby Tree. Fortunately for the blogger, the trees were out on a walk (just work with me here) when she arrived, and she sat down to sample the dinner they had left behind.

"Haste!" said the blogger, delighted at her discovery. "The trees like haste!"

She sat at Papa Tree's plate. "He has too much haste," she said. She sat at Mama Tree's plate. "She has too little haste," she said. She sat at Baby Tree's plate. "This haste is just right!" she said and gobbled it up.

"There's no such thing as too much haste," said Papa Tree outside the window, observing the loss of his offspring's dinner. "And do you have Dark Intent? I think you'll find that my wife's haste is -- "

"You can have too much haste," argued Mama Tree. "How much do you have right now? Didn't you just pass the breakpoint for a ninth tick of Wild Growth? Why aren't you focusing on mastery? It -- "

And so the blogger sprinted out of the magical forest and threw herself in front of a magical train, sobbing on her way to mortal oblivion, "I was told that there would be no math in this expansion!"

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

Shifting Perspectives: Guide to patch 4.2 for bear and tree druids

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we've returned from the Angry Dome.

Well, after pissing off Blizzard for the millionth week in a row, today we're going to turn our attention to slightly less explosive concerns. By the way, "Tank Q&A sucks" is a top search phrase for last week's Shifting. Just thought I'd mention.

As long as we're on the subject of the developer Q&As, I might as well make an uncomfortable segue to observing that Blizzard's now taking queries for the Q&A on healers. Go ask questions! Personally I am very interested in hearing if they're going to update Tree of Life form, or make Innervate a baseline ability rather than the 31-point talent in the restoration tree.

Ha ha! I kid because I love.

On the off chance that patch 4.2 hits today (which it probably won't, but eh), this is a quick and dirty guide to the patch notes that'll concern you if you play a bear or tree druid. If the patch hits next week, we'll keep ourselves occupied making daisy chains or something. Or, if the healer Q&A gets published sooner than expected, I'll write another enraged diatribe for everyone to enjoy.

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

Shifting Perspectives: The future non-suck of mastery

Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration and balance druids. This Tuesday, we contemplate the possibility of writing a future article on predictions that came true, because goddamn, we're amazing.

One of these days I really ought to write an edition of Shifting that's nothing but a smug-a-thon on how much I've been able to get right. That this necessitates ignoring the 95% that I get wrong is somewhat troublesome if you're one of those people who gets hung up on the ephemeral phenomenon sometimes known as "accuracy," but a good writer never lets the truth stand between herself and a great story.

On this occasion, I am pleased to say -- to a legion of people who could reasonably have expected an upcoming change anyway -- I told you so.

Booyeah!

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

Shifting Perspectives: Do restoration druids need a cooldown?


Every week, WoW Insider brings you Shifting Perspectives for cat, bear, restoration, and balance druids. This Tuesday, we equivocate on whether a point made in Shifting Perspectives: Healers, selfishness, and trouble ahead was prescient or just another beneficiary of Allie's usual dumb luck.

The title of today's Shifting column is maybe a little misleading. Strictly speaking, restoration already has a cooldown -- the still-controversial Disco Soul Patch Groovy Tree that has wildly gesticulated its way into all our hearts (well, some peoples' hearts) -- but now the developers are considering other possibilities in light of some data from tier 11 raids.

Not that we have access to said data (or anything to go on besides our usual rampant speculation), but a few trends have emerged from tier 11 that make the possibility of getting a big cooldown a bit more likely.

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Filed under: Druid, (Druid) Shifting Perspectives

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