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Mists of Pandaria: Cool class stuff we found

Michael Sacco

We've been watching the systems team design the new talent system for a few months now, with intermittent updates to the talent calculator and ability distribution. BlizzCon 2011 showed us what was in store for certain classes, like the new resource systems for warlocks, no melee weapons for hunters, poison changes for rogues, and more.

At the press event last week, I got to play around with a few classes during my time on the demo computer -- not all of them, certainly, but enough that I have a few fun or interesting things to report that wouldn't really fit elsewhere. Let's take a look!


I didn't spend a lot of time actually playing a druid, but I did hear a bit of interesting news while I was playing other classes, so I hopped onto my premade druid to find out for myself. I was able to confirm that, yes, there are some minor glyphs druids are going to absolutely adore. Here they are:

  • Glyph of Stars Transforms your Moonkin Form into Astral Form. This glyph essentially makes your character appear as a spirit instead of a moonkin. You look very nearly like you do while dead -- but people can see you this time ... and your armor, for that matter.
  • Glyph of the Orca Transforms your Aquatic Form into an orca. This one is pretty straightforward. Remember those orcas in Northrend? Yeah. Much better than your weird, snarling, rubbery seal.
  • Glyph of the Chameleon Gives you a random appearance when you shift into Bear or Cat Form. Essentially, this one gives you a random coloring every time you shift. Great for breaking up the monotony of locked-in bear/cat coloring.
  • Glyph of the Stag Transforms your Travel Form into a stag that other players can mount. Yes, that's right. Your pals can ride you while you're in Travel Form, and you're also a stag instead of the clearly inferior cheetah.
  • Glyph of the Tree Lets you transform into Treant Form.
So these basically own, right?


I checked the shaman first because I play a shaman main. I wanted to check to see if the level 90 talents were in, and by golly, they were! Our premade characters were only level 85, so I couldn't test them out, but I did write 'em down for you.
  • One supercharges your Unleash Elements to provide a much better bonus for each imbue type.
  • Another removes the cooldown on your Fire and Earth Elemental Totems and allows you to control them.
  • And the last is a blast of elemental energy in a cone on a 15-second cooldown.
Bear in mind that talents are still being worked on, and these may not be final. I also may not have remembered the nuances of each. We couldn't take screenshots, so this is the best you'll get until Blizzard updates the talent calculator.

Also of note: Totems are no longer listed as separate spells in your spellbook. There's an expandable button for each kind of totem, and you can pull totems from there if you want to put specific ones on your bar.


I played around with a destruction warlock to try out the new Fel Embers resource system. You get more Fel Embers each time you cast Incinerate on an Immolated target, building up a maximum of (I think) 90. Every 30 Embers you build up, your character becomes more and more covered in flame. You also take damage over time, increasing with each Flame. The flames act as a damage buff but are also used as a resource for some of your other spells. You have to strike a balance between the damage boost, the damage you're taking, and how many Embers you need to use for abilities.

Demonology warlocks can also look forward to Demonic Fury as their new resource. You can turn into a demon with Demonic Fury, and the form persists as long as you still have unspent Demonic Fury. Some abilities in Demon Form use up the Fury, and when you run out, you revert back to your normal form. I didn't get a lot of time with Demonic Fury, but it was certainly cool to walk around as a demon as long as I wanted!

Here are some fun minor glyphs I found as well:
  • Glyph of Felguard Equips your felguard with a random two-handed sword, two-handed axe, or polearm when you summon him.
  • Glyph of Eye of Kilrogg Your Eye of Kilrogg no longer has stealth, but it can place your Demonic Circle.

Of note for monks is the removal of the dual Light/Dark Force resource system, replaced with the singular Chi system. Reps told us that tracking three resources on top of procs, buffs, etc. was just too much and didn't make for compelling gameplay. I really enjoyed the little bit of monk gameplay I got to try, especially seeing the new monk animations hooked up to older races like the draenei.

Monks now also have auto-attack. Blizzard said it just didn't work.

It's open warfare between Alliance and Horde in Mists of Pandaria, World of Warcraft's next expansion. Jump into five new levels with new talents and class mechanics, try the new monk class, and create a pandaren character to ally with either Horde or Alliance. Look for expansion basics in our Mists FAQ, or dig into our spring press event coverage for more details!

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