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  • Shifting Perspectives: Patch 3.0.8 for Druids

    by 
    Allison Robert
    Allison Robert
    01.16.2009

    Every Tuesday, or sometimes Friday when the writer's internet has gone AWOL between Sunday evening and Thursday afternoon, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week we take a look at the upcoming patch 3.0.8. while penning an angry letter to our ISP.Greetings, folks. Patch 3.0.8 is coming, bringing a few significant changes for the Druid class. Feral attack power is disappearing from the game entirely alongside bonus armor contribution from non-leather items. Restoration is receiving a nerf in the form of a 6-second cooldown to Wild Growth but is otherwise getting some buffs. Balance is also getting a few buffs, including one that will make a big difference to PvP combat versus Rogues and Hunters. But I think, dear readers, we are overlooking the most important part of patch 3.0.8:Fixed a bug with a Wild Mustard plant that was under the ground in Dalaran. Oh, thank God. That drove me nuts.(Really).(I'd also love to see them do something about the underground Tiger Lily spawn in Sholazar).(It's just south of River's Heart).(Really annoying).(Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?).

  • Shifting Perspectives: The Druid of 2008

    by 
    Allison Robert
    Allison Robert
    12.30.2008

    Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week, our author is completely spaced out on cold medication, and is somewhat concerned that her raid performance has improved under the circumstances.The time has come (the Allie said)To talk of many things.Of Roots and Bash and Travel Form,And Strength (which scales with Kings).Why Tauren cat form sucks so hard,And whether trees have wings!And, yes, before anyone asks, I'm tripping on too much cough syrup and ibuprofen after receiving a belated viral Christmas gift from a relative. So I'll just put this out there right now; this column's probably on the weird side. I took a long look at all three Druid specs over 2008 and saw a few sad things, a few happy things, a little song, a little dance, a little seltzer down your pants, and now I'm channeling the famous Mary Tyler Moore episode "Chuckles Bites the Dust," and that has to stop because I do not believe Mary Tyler Moore ever played a Druid.If you're completely uninterested in reading an account of any spec that's not your own -- although that would make me weep into my little cup of generic label cough syrup -- here's a set of quick links to each: Balance Feral Resto

  • Shifting Perspectives: So. Um, do bears suck?

    by 
    Allison Robert
    Allison Robert
    12.16.2008

    Every Tuesday, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week we shelve the column we originally intended to run due to a rather pressing matter.OK, folks. I have a confession to make. This week's Shifting Perspectives was originally meant to be a full guide to gearing your Restoration Druid at 80, and I'm still going to post that, either this week or next. A lot of people have (correctly, I think) observed that this column has historically paid more attention to Feral than to Restoration or Balance, and it's my aim to balance (har!) that out a bit. Part of it is just that the people who play Druids on staff here at WoW Insider are usually feral, and part of it is that -- at least as of the last numbers we had on it -- most people playing Druids are also feral. I confess I would love to see the demographics on Druids post-Wrath, because I get the sense that Balance in particular has become markedly more popular.But the Resto post is going to have to wait a few days, not least because my eyes are swimming from so much Wowhead. We found out today that Swipe's threat is getting a significant buff, but over the course of reading the pertinent forum thread and some back-channel discussion here, I ran across a few things concerning bear tanking that really made me sit up after the hell of tanking last night's heroic Old Kingdom and go, "Wait. It's not just me?"Personally whenever I encounter serious problems in a dungeon I tend to chalk it up to the fact that I suck. I find this to be an efficient and typically accurate means of pinpointing the source of an issue. However, my fellow Druids, our problems may actually be more wide-ranging than that.

  • Druid's Swipe now generates 50% increased threat

    by 
    Adam Holisky
    Adam Holisky
    12.16.2008

    Ghostcrawler mentioned last night that the Druid ability Swipe was on their radar for a fix. Blizzard, and many Druids, felt that when you combined Swipe with the global cooldown it wasn't generating enough threat. There have also been extenuating issues concerning Swipe's effectiveness in picking up mobs in a uniform manner, often requiring the druid to have near perfect positioning.That's now been "fixed" today via a hotfix.Swipe's threat has been increased by 50%.Previously the limitation on the number of targets swipe could hit was removed, along with other classes AoE tanking abilities like Thunder Clap.The immediate effect of this won't be known beyond "it'll let Druids AoE tank better." There might be some backlash from the other classes that Swipe will now cause too much threat compared to their abilities (thus tipping the scale in favor of a Druid tank). There also might be some concern that people will just spam Swipe.Only time and everyone's reaction will tell.

  • Changes to AoE in patch 3.0.4

    by 
    Adam Holisky
    Adam Holisky
    11.24.2008

    Ghostcrawler let us all know today of a few changes for classes that are being left out of the "AoE fun." He's only talking in relatively broad terms right now, and will give specifics later when things are more locked down.Some of the changes include: Shaman: Removing threat from the Fire Nova Totem and Magma Totem, and increasing the damage done by the Magma Totem. Rogue: Fan of Knives cooldown removed. Daggers more useful for Fan of Knives. Druid: Swipe will now be a baseline ability. He mentions that these changes will be seen in the next minor content patch. Ghostcrawler also hints that they will be available in the next PTR push (which we're expecting relatively soon)

  • Shifting Perspectives: State of the class, part 1 - Balance

    by 
    Allison Robert
    Allison Robert
    11.06.2008

    Every Tuesday, or possibly Thursday when the writer votes on Tuesday and spends Wednesday screaming and beating her laptop over formatting errors, Shifting Perspectives explores issues affecting Druids and those who group with them. This week Allison Robert steals John Patricelli's column once again, secure in the knowledge that she will never be forced to atone for her crime as long as she writes something nice about ferals and keeps a respectful distance from Dan O'Halloran's whip.I hate Tauren cat form.Good. I got that out of my system and can write something productive. Although, believe me, if I could get away with it, an entire Shifting Perspectives would be devoted to just how much I hate Tauren cat form. I mean, just look at it! Look at the angle on the horns! The cat can't bite anything! Christ, I just -- hi, Dan. Yes, I'm totally writing the column! Look at me go!This week, mindful as always of American election-year politicking, I'm going to borrow a page from presidential duties and write a little something I like to call "State of the Class." Druids have undergone a number of changes in the transition to Wrath of the Lich King, and will acquire even more as they level to 80. We are one of Blizzard's primary targets for both gear and role consolidation, which raises a few questions over how comfortably we're going to scale in relation to pure classes and what we can realistically expect on the march to a new level cap.The TL:DR version of this article -- I believe our future is generally bright, the Druid community continues to have a few concerns over certain aspects of the class, our focus in PvP seems to be changing the most, and I hate Tauren cat form. This is a three-part post, so let's get started with balance. However, if you want to jump ahead to feral, you'll find that here; and the third part, restoration, is here.

  • Blizzard leaning toward AE Tanking for all

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    09.29.2008

    You may recall earlier yesterday that we reported on Thunder Clap losing its target limit, thus quite suddenly making Warriors have a very good chance of being viable AE tanks. One thing that you might have also noticed is that the Druid's Swipe is getting the same treatment (no word on whether it will also be getting the ability to go 360 degrees, but it seems likely, if it's going to be a Thunder Clap/Consecrate equivalent). In addition, Death and Decay, the Death Knight's AE mainstay, recently received a bump to threat gain. That means that all 4 tank classes, in theory, will have the ability to do some Protection Paladin style AE tanking should they want to. This all seems to be in line with the tanking philosophy Blizzard has been pushing for Wrath, one which Ghostcrawler recently reiterated: Blizzard wants to make sure that all tanks are as equal as possible. There should be no reason to take one class of tank over another, all things being equal, and no reason to sideline your tank because he or she is not the right class. Certainly, if this is to be realized completely, you do have to give every tank a good amount of AE capability, and this latest round of announced tank changes seems to be tailor made to do just that. As the former player of a Druid tank and the future (current beta) player of a Death Knight tank, I'm very pleased to see these changes. I know that there was nothing more fun that running through a dungeon like Shattered Halls as a DPS with a Paladin Tank leading the way, and the idea that every tank class might be able to do that to some extent in Wrath makes me incredibly excited. It also allows groups to be more flexible in what DPS they take, including DPSers that traditionally have had a hard time getting groups due to having poor CC abilities, such as Cat Druids and Retribution Paladins. If this change is handled right, it will go a long way toward solving the tank shortage for PuG groups, and, in fact, make the 5-man dungeon run fun again in general.

  • Scattered Shots: Pet talent trees in the Wrath Beta

    by 
    Daniel Whitcomb
    Daniel Whitcomb
    08.14.2008

    Welcome to another edition of Scattered Shots, the other WoW Insider weekly Hunter column. Daniel Whitcomb is your guest host again this week. So, we theorized about talented pets a bit quite a few installments of Scattered Shots ago, but now we have the actual trees live and testable on the Wrath Beta, and they seem to be firming up nicely. There's a few promised changes yet to come, such as the removal or lowering of focus costs on many major abilities and talents, and it's still very possible that Blizzard may make changes here and there before live, but I think they're solid enough at this point that we can look at each tree and make some solid predictions about how people will use them and how various talent builds might look.

  • CSS trick mimics sideways-flicking behavior in MobileSafari

    by 
    Robert Palmer
    Robert Palmer
    08.13.2008

    Ajaxian has posted a ridiculously simple way to enable web apps to mimic the iPhone's side-to-side flicking behavior using custom CSS supported by MobileSafari. If you're creating a web app specifically for iPhone and iPod touch users, you can get a similar feel to a native application with MobileSafari. MobileSafari includes some CSS 3 support, including advanced DOM selectors and support for animations and transitions. Chances are, other browsers will have limited support for CSS 3 draft standards, and whatever you write probably will only work in MobileSafari and Safari 3 on the desktop. The test application in this movie shows how it tracks finger movements across the screen, and performs actions based on the distance "swiped." Very nifty. [Via Cameron.io.]

  • Wrath Beta patch notes: Feral and Restoration Druids

    by 
    Amanda Miller
    Amanda Miller
    07.19.2008

    Continuing on from the analysis of the changes to the Balance druid talent tree, as shown in the first patch notes for the official Wrath of the Lich King Beta, we'll now examine the Feral and Restoration trees. Feral treeThe Feral tree is seeing changes to limit the benefits that the other two trees, specifically Restoration, can gain from investing a few points into the first few tiers. We are also seeing changes to the ways in which bears will be generating aggro. The Faerie Fire (Feral) and Feral Charge swapFeral Charge is currently an 11-point talent into the Feral tree, which contributing to the advantages that Restoration druids currently have in arena. It allows Restoration druids the ability to charge, immobilizing their target and interrupting spells for four seconds. Instead, Faerie Fire (Feral), which is not something that a Restoration druid would likely spend 11 points to get, will take up the 11-point spot, with Feral Charge taking its place in the tree 21 points in. In addition, Feral Charge will be usable in cat form, dazing the target and moving the cat behind it. This will help address the concerns that cat form is not especially viable in PvP, although their crit dependency is still a weakness. It will also be useful in dungeons to catch runners and other out of place mobs.