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Cataclysm Beta: Death knight talents and specializations

The huge, earthshaking 31-point talent overhaul has hit the Cataclysm beta servers, taking the death knight class to new ground, back to the old vanilla era of 31-point trees. It may be for this reason that Blizzard's specifically said that our trees are far from done. With that in my mind, the trees and specialization skills we see can and will change pretty extensively between now and release. That said, there's no harm and certainly some good to be had in sizing up the trees as they stand right now and seeing how they pan out.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, News items, Death Knight, Cataclysm

Cataclysm class and mastery systems explained

Everything we knew about talents have changed. Some highlights:
  • You choose one tree at level 10 and then can only add talents to that tree until you have put 31 points in it. Then the other trees open up.
  • At level 78 and above, items will start dropping with Mastery as a stat. Once Mastery is learned from your class trainer, the stat will give bonuses based on the tree specialized in.
  • The Mastery bonuses will be flat percentages and will no longer be based on the number of talents spent in a tree.
  • Talents will alternate with skills when leveling. So you will get a talent point "about" every other level.

The full blue post is after the break.

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Filed under: News items, Cataclysm

Encrypted Text: Our ancestors would not be proud

Every Wednesday, Chase Christian of Encrypted Text invites you to enter the world of shadows, as we explore the secrets and mechanics of the Rogue class. This week, we'll be talking about how Rogue weaponry is changing with the upcoming WotLK expansion.

With a sharpening stone in one hand, he begins to hone the dagger to a fiercely sharp point. Sparks of metal and chunks of dried blood fall from the weapon with each stroke of his trained hand. Once satisfied with his work, the Rogue raises the blade high above his head; the edge catches a ray of the Sun's light and shines with a deadly glow.

The dagger is lowered, and solemnly wrapped in a piece of black mageweave. The assassin hands the dark bundle to his apprentice, who is bowing in reverence. The neophyte takes the gift, and promptly places it in her backpack. Outraged, the elder Rogue demands to know why his student would insult him by not even admiring the gift. She sarcastically replies: "Sorry pops, nobody uses 1.8 speed daggers anymore! Read the patch notes." As she skips off to hunt down a rare panther, the master shakes his head in confusion and shame.

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Filed under: Rogue, Expansions, Features, Raiding, Classes, Buffs, (Rogue) Encrypted Text, Wrath of the Lich King

Ten Druids go on nom spree in Kara



First the bears danced. Then the cats tapped their paws. Then all heck broke loose with the moonkin and the trees and the ahhhhhhh! Then the ten Druid team from Immortal Trust on Anvilmar decided they'd better go inside the actual Karazhan instance and make with the serious killin'.

Attumen the Huntsman and Midnight went down in cloud of feathers, fur, and branches. Then the druids took a dinner break, feasting on skeleton bones and the occasional orange. Their bellies (or whatever trees have) full, they invited an unsuspecting Moroes to join them, the druids telling him, "We're only here to serve Moroes." Mu-hahahaha! They dumped his bones in a vat of soup, declaring it a chunky brand. The Maiden of Virtue could not resist the Druids' musky allure and she also succumbed. Much posing and dancing ensued. Even little Peanut could not contain his joy at the victory. Alas, their tryst with Julianne was not to be. What sweet sorrow having no spell interrupts in any of the Druid talent trees. But next time, some way, somehow, she and Romulo will be theirs!

And the most astonishing thing about this run? The screen-capturing druid using the default UI! Huzzah!

[Thanks, Shethornclaw!]

Filed under: Druid, Fan stuff, Instances, Humor, Screenshots, Raiding, Bosses, Galleries

Frost Mages and Frost Death Knights

Over on the forums, Scorp brings up a Death Knight concern that I haven't heard before: as we all have known since last BlizzCon, the Death Knight's three talent trees are "Blood," "Unholy," and "Frost," and the one that Scorp has a problem with is the last one. Should Blizzard change the "Frost" tree on the Death Knight class so people don't confuse it with Mages?

If you're asking me: no. "Restoration," "Holy," and "Protection" are all reused in a few different talent trees, and for both of those, while the talents are different, the intent is the same. "Frost," for both Mages and Death Knights, will have the same aim as well, as far as we've been told so far -- both classes will aim for DPS in those trees, with extra consideration given to crowd control and slow debuffs. In fact, depending on exactly how the Death Knight's talents work, the "Frost" title might help newer players understand the tree a little better anyway, especially if they've played with a Frost Mage before.

Not that people don't have ideas -- "Ice" (yes, Ice, baby), "Chill" and "Really, really cold stuff" are all names being thrown around on the forums. But Blizzard will probably stick with "Frost" -- no reason to change it up, especially if the abilities line up with the Mage tree as much as we expect them to.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blizzard, Talents, Death Knight, Wrath of the Lich King

Warrior Talents in Wrath of the Lich King

Warriors can rejoice today, basking in their newly leaked talents from Wrath of the Lich King. This information has been first obtained through a [redacted] but has since been independently confirmed by WoW Insider staff. Note that the information you're seeing here is correct, while the wiki page you're seeing now could be updated with false information. However, that's where our confirmation of the data comes into play.

Read on after the break for the full list we have so far. This is a spoiler, so don't look unless you want to!

Update: At Blizzard's request, we have removed the information from our site.

Update:
Please don't post notes or references to notes in the comments. We're just going to remove them. Thanks.

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Filed under: Warrior, Wrath of the Lich King

A failed real life attempt at a WoW quest

Any readers in the audience who have played through the Draenei starting area (and you should -- it's a fun zone) must remember the Tree's Company quest, in which you are asked to disguise yourself as a tree in order to overhear a secret meeting. Well, while there's no suggestion that World of Warcraft was involved, this weekend a man in Manchester, New Hampshire robbed a bank while disguised as a tree. (He made off with less than $1000 and was later caught.) Obviously, the tree disguise idea doesn't work nearly as well in real life as it did in the game -- as you can see in the security footage to the right, the disguise just isn't working.

[via Boing Boing]

Filed under: Odds and ends, Humor

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