MMO-Champion has datamined the long-awaited new Tree of Life model from an upcoming beta build (click the image above for a high-res version), and commentary's already starting to fly on the forums. Some players are really enthusiastic, others are not (Cirocco of Rexxar's notable soundbite: "Hunchback of Notre Lame"), and others think it's a little too masculine-looking in comparison to the older treant model.
If the posture looks a little familiar, it's because the Tree apparently shares the male orc's skeleton and animations (at least for the moment), although I'm having difficulty locating the YouTube video that a player claims to have seen of this. The new model isn't yet live on the beta, so unfortunately I can't yet get a video for myself. EDIT: Thanks to our readers, it's been located -- go here.
I really like the new model, but I'm surprised that Blizzard thought it was a priority for an update given the Tree of Life's new status as a Metamorphosis-like cooldown. Bears and cats finally got their update in patch 3.2, so I'm hoping that Moonkin, Travel and Aquatic Form are next on the list. At any rate, it's a spot of good news (well, to me, anyway) in a patch where cat DPS has nose-dived, bears are going crazy trying to hold aggro in 5-mans, and trees are ... well, no longer trees. Past the cut you'll find a quick note on the WoW Insider team's take.