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Posts with tag talent-spec

Breakfast Topic: Would you like tri-spec?

Breakfast Topic Would you use a third talent spec
I have a problem, dear reader. I'm an addict. You may be the same, and if you are, a part of me feels for you. The rest of me is glad you're along with me for the ride!

What do I mean? Well, I get addicted to specs. I find one that I like, and I stick with it. You might well be aware, if you read the Blood Sport columns I write, that I do a lot of PvP, but I also raid. And, the vast majority of the time, I do the same in both settings.

My shaman's talent specs are PvP restoration/PvE restoration. My priest? PvP discipline/PvE discipline (I'm in love with Atonement Archangel right now.) My mage? PvP fire/PvE fire. Are you beginning to see a pattern emerging?

So where is the problem in focusing on one talent spec for both your options? Well, take my shaman. I have thousands upon thousands of conquest points and valor points. I have full, epic-gemmed, Cataclysmic Gladiator gear. My PvE gear is all 397 or above. So when the raid drops and tokens come my way because we have nobody else to take them, what do I do? I play restoration in either PvP or PvE most days, and while I'd love to give elemental a go, I don't want to spend all my time respeccing. I would give ... I don't know -- what's an organ we don't really need? My appendix. I would give my appendix for a third talent spec. Heck, take my tonsils, while you're at it.

How about you? Would you use a third talent spec? Are you like me in sticking to one talent tree in two iterations? Do you long for more flexibility? Or do you not really feel the need for it? And, of course, why?

Filed under: Breakfast Topics

Is it time to kill tanking?

Please note I said "tanking" and not "tanks." If you know a tank, give him or her a hug. He or she isn't clad in cold metal or an angry bear that will tear off your face because of you; it's those pesky mobs.

The tanking system has long been somewhat problematic in World of Warcraft. While it scales to some degree, from 5-man dungeons to 10-man raids, the scaling falls apart when we get to 25-man raiding, which currently demands about the same amount of tanking as 10-man. You can get through most of Firelands with two tanks, no matter your raid size. Majordomo Staghelm only requires one tank, again, no matter your raid size. This means that the scaling from five to 10 works, but as soon as you go from 10 to 25, instead of needing 2.5 times more tanks, you need no more tanks.

The other problem is simply that there already aren't enough tanks for every 5-man group. When the Call to Arms feature was announced for the Dungeon Finder tool, it was created out of the simple fact that we're not seeing the distribution we'd expect in the playerbase. In order for the Dungeon Finder to work without significant group queues, we would need 20% of the people queuing up to be tanks (1 in 5 = 20%). This is not the case.

People simply don't want the perceived group responsibility of tanking. It's why changes were made to CC mechanics that allow groups to CC on the fly without pulling. It's why Call to Arms exists. And yet, despite both of these changes, tanking was still so unattractive to players that threat itself needed to be redesigned. All of this work to try and get people to tank. Maybe the problem isn't the players here, though. Maybe it's the role.

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Filed under: Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Death Knight

The Art of War(craft): Must-have PvP talents for druids in 4.0.1

Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Art of War(craft), covering battlegrounds and world PvP, and Blood Sport, with the inside line for arena enthusiasts. Want to crush your enemies, see them driven before you and hear the lamentation of their women? Battlemaster Zach Yonzon, old-world PvP grinder and casual battleground habitué, rambles on about anything and everything PvP.

Let's try to get you prepared for Cataclysm, shall we? In the new (banged-up, broken and burnt) world of the expansion, battlegrounds play will stand toe to toe with arenas as far as gear acquisition and quite possibly have even better participation. You don't want to miss out on that. Today we'll discuss the best PvP talents you can pick up as a druid, and you can decide for yourself what other talents to round out your PvP spec.

Perhaps the biggest change for druids in patch 4.0.1 is a new mechanic for balance druids called Eclipse, which relies on the buildup of lunar or solar energy conferred by casting either nature or arcane damage spells, respectively. This means that balance druids will be constantly trying to achieve an Eclipse by casting spells from one school, then shifting to another school once they've gotten the bonus. Out of all specs, balance plays the most differently compared to before the patch, but everyone gets fun tools to use in PvP. Let's check out all these toys across all specs.

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Filed under: Druid, Analysis / Opinion, PvP, The Art of War(craft) (PvP)

WoW Rookie: The basics of dual spec

New around here? WoW Rookie has your back! Get all our collected tips, tricks and tactics for new players in the WoW Rookie Guide.

World of Warcraft is a game of specialists; even (and especially) the so-called hybrid classes end up playing in specific, focused roles in group and end-game content. The higher you level and the more talents you learn, the more specialized your character becomes. Your "spec" (specialization), determined by where you've distributed your points among the three talent trees available to your class, begins to define and inform your gameplay as you group with others more and more often.

At some point, you'll want to experiment with another set of talents -- that's time for a respec. (Look for talent recommendations in our leveling guides and our Class 101 series.) Soon enough, you'll be wishing you could switch between one set of talents and another -- and you can, with dual specialization.

Before we dig into the basics, we should note one of the more exciting changes for leveling players coming up in Cataclysm. The expansion will lower both the required level and cost of dual spec, giving players more flexibility for group and individual play than ever before.

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Filed under: WoW Rookie

The Light and How to Swing It: Retribution 102

With the Light as his strength, Gregg Reece of The Light and How to Swing It faces down the demons of the Burning Legion, the undead of the Scourge, and helps with the puppet shows at the Argent Ren Faire up in Icecrown.

We're back again. I wasn't sure I'd be available to write the article this week as I've got a little paladin on the way and she's due any day now. The closest the doctor would give us was "soon." However, let's get down to business.

Last week we did a Retribution 101 article on what qualities make up a ret pally and what to expect from the spec. This week we're going to look at the basic talent spec as well as what our talents do for us. It's a fairly long post, so feel free to go grab something to drink now and then catch us after the break.

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

Dedicated dual wield tree for Death Knights a possibility

A few days ago, Bornakk responded to yet another thread regarding dual wielding for Death Knights. I read it, shrugged, moved on with life, but I found myself digging up the thread again because I started to warm up to the idea Bornakk put forth: They're considering (that's the key word here) "something like making the frost tree the dual-wield tree" and letting the strikes hit with both weapons like Mutilate and Stormstrike.

Bornakk says balancing both Dual Wielding and 2Handers in each talent tree has been exceptionally challenging, and I think we've seen that firsthand. Talents aimed for one build make their way into another, and things quickly get out of hand. Turning one of the trees specifically into the Dual Wielding tree (whether it be Frost or Unholy or whatever) is something I can get behind, even if it runs counter to what they've been trying to do with the talent trees since the Wrath beta.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Death Knight

The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Heavy

I have spent 600 gold on respecs in the past week.

Yes, you read correctly. While leveling to 80, I've been respeccing constantly. The reason is simple: I love fury, I love Titan's Grip, I have a ball running around with 2h weapons, but protection is the best leveling spec for warrior right now.

I want those of you who remember the Burning Crusade launch to read that sentence again. If you needed any proof that it's a whole new game now, then let this be your proof: protection is the best leveling spec for warriors right now. It's fast, fun and powerful. These are not things I ever expected to say about prot spec.

Now, I've been tanking for a long time now, and I've been prot since I hit 70 in TBC. It's always been excellent for tanking, but unlike other tank classes, it dedicated all of its tanking power to static threat moves and had weak multi-mob tanking abilities (I detailed what I saw as the problems of the class as tanks here) but all of that is gone now. Everything I wrote about as a weakness of protection? Gone.

Multi-mob tanking? We're strong. Damage output? Very good. Threat? Holding steady. Our health bars? You can't kill me until I run out of tricks. I have solo'd or 2 manned (with my lovely hunter wife and her pet) group quests that call for up to five people. (To be fair, I had 200 health left on one of them.) My love for DPS spec TG is still there, but if you want to finish a quest fast, nothing beats being able to pull an entire room of undead onto yourself, pop shield block, and know that they are going to kill themselves beating on you.

Protection is the best leveling spec in the game right now, good damage, excellent survivability, and moments when you revenge and shield slam for 2k back to back and things disintegrate. Today we'll talk about a protection DPS build at 70, 75 and 80. It's a strong build for grinding and can tank instances, but is not a raid tanking build for reasons we'll explain as we go.

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Filed under: Warrior, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Expansions, Leveling, Guides, Talents, (Warrior) The Care and Feeding of Warriors, Wrath of the Lich King

Ask a Beta Tester: Flying in the snow, etc

FoSho asked....

Maybe I'm in the dark here, but how does one get to Dalaran since its floating in mid air. Is there a portal in a town, or do you have to be 67 to get there? I keep on hearing its "dangerous" to get to Dalaran, how so?

I wouldn't call it dangerous, but you aren't going to be able to get there at level 70 without the help of a Mage or Warlock. Because Dalaran is floating high above Northrend, you need a flying mounto reach it, and when you first arrive in Northrend, your flying mount simply doesn't know how to handle the cold weather. You'll need to complete a level 77 quest chain to obtain Cold Weather Flying and reach Dalaran on your own. Alternatively, there's a quest at level 74 you can seek out in certain inns that will take you there.

For more of your beta questions -- and our beta answers -- read on! But if you're the sort who wants to avoid spoilers, turn back now. We're aiming to avoid major story spoilers, but this feature is all about beta content and we can't talk about the beta without giving a few things away.

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Filed under: Wrath of the Lich King

Bornakk says more about two specs per character in Wrath

On the WoW forums this morning, there was renewed gurgling about the desire to be able to respec more easily, specifically between PvP specs and raiding specs. Blue Blizzard poster, Bornakk, reconfirmed what had already been discussed at the Worldwide Invitational -- that the developers are working on a way to have two swappable talent specs. They are still working out the details but it sounds like something that's definitely coming because the Blues could've easily let this thread just die of atrophy.

I'm not sure I agree with some posters who say that respeccing is a "huge pain." It's an inconvenience, yes, but then so is flying from one zone to another or waiting in line for battlegrounds. Also, as for the cost, 50 gold is merely a grain of sand to someone at level 70. (And if it isn't then, dude, what the heck are you doing out there? Buzzing on Bash Ale all day?) Conversely, how would having two different specs at your disposal make the game "too easy," as other commenters posted? My eyes are rolling so much that they may come right out of my head. (This is exactly why I try not to read much of the forums.) There was much musing about how the respec mechanic might be best implemented -- by player posters, not by Blues -- including ideas for 24 hour cool-downs, respec token systems, higher costs, lower costs and, for some reason, portals and summoning.

Regardless of what mass opinions are, Blizzard's developers seem to be looking hard at what the ramifications of twin specs would do to the game's balance. They obviously spend a lot of time studying how PvP and PvE are played
and seem to have an affinity for splitting these two gameplay styles and I don't think they will make it as simple as a mouse-click in Wrath.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, PvP, Expansions, Raiding, Talents, Forums, Worldwide Invitational

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