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Initial Reactions to the Class Changes in 4.01
Now that I've had a little time to test out the new changes to the Resto Druid I wanted to put down some of my thoughts and feelings about them. These are observations made from doing 5 man heroics and raiding 10 man Ulduar a bit.

Healing as a druid is all about Heal Over Time spells, that’s what makes the spec unique. So I’m excited that overall our HoTs have become much more powerful. Haste now effects how fast the spell ticks for without shortening the duration of the spell. And ticks can crit as well. The HPS these things must be doing is insane.

Raid healing is more reactive and less proactive. They’ve made it so there’s not much use in spamming rejuvenation on as many people as possible because it’s a much shorter duration on the HoT. Instead there are three different spells that can effectively heal clusters of people with one or two clicks.

Our single target raid healing spells are more responsive. Rejuvenation can instantly heal the target for a small amount upon cast. And Regrowth has a shorter cast time making it a great spell to get people’s health bars up quickly.

Those two things together make it less of a tedious and repetitive process, and gives us more flexibility when we need it.

All of the healing spells now have a distinct purpose. Some of the spells that people rarely or never used, like Healing Touch and Tranquility, have been updated and promise to become a regular part of a healer’s repetoire.

A lot of people have been complaining about the changes to Tree of Life. I think it’s a much more interesting concept now. Tree of Life didn’t do anything for you before except reduce the mana cost and increase the power of your spells. Useful, but boring and a big no brainer. If you were raiding you just were always in tree form, there was no reason not to. However now it’s on a cool down and it doesn’t only increase your amount healed but actually enhances the properties of your existing spells so it’s like your spells are morphing along with your body. So now you actually need to put some thought into when you’re going to use it. (I also like the fact that I can actually show off my cool armor and weapons in caster form).

I really enjoy what they’ve done with Resto Druids, I think they’ve streamlined the healing process to trim down some of the needless overhealing and wasted heals that plagued resto druids in Wrath.

I’m interested to hear what others have to say about the changes to their class/spec.
Although my experience has been fairly limited (Consisting a a couple 5-mans and an ICC-10 run) I can honestly say that I really enjoy the changes to Boomkin. The solar/lunar eclipse building is much easier to gauge now (and not a completely random chance) and I am slowly getting used to the cycle. Overall, our single target damage seems to have gone up, and our AoE damage certainly hasn't dropped. I am actually looking forward to the exploding mushroom we'll be getting come Cata. It could be a fun thing to play around with.
Shantow the Bear
The Ironsong Tribe

"The man in black fled across the desert, and the gunslinger followed." King
My thoughts so far...

Never thought I'd say it, but I'm actually finding a good use for Thunderclap as an Arms warrior. There's a talent in the first tier of the Prot tree that allows Rend to spread to every mob around me if I have it running on one mob already. This means I can Rend one mob, Thundclap and my Rend will start ticking on all of them AND it refreshes the duration of Rend onthe target. I rend once, and Thunderclap the rest of the fight as needed. Also, damage has gone up and that's always good to see. The way the UI is set now to show you when procs go off is pretty cool, and all the new noises are fun. I'm very much looking forward to Colossal Smash and being able to proc that from Sudden Death. I am a bit upset that Sudden Death no longer procs my Execute, but with CS replacing it at 85, I don't think I'll be upset for long. And I still have BROOOOSTORRRRRM, so I'm happy there. Big Grin

I have two paladins. One Holy, one Ret. There are things I like and dislike about both.

Ret is putting out some decent damage still, the Art of War procs on Exorcism (which damage has gone way up on that spell), the ability to do double Templar Verdicts from a proc, Rebuke being an actual interrupt/silence and the ability to use Hammer of Wrath during my Avenging Wrath is pretty awesome (15-20 HoW crits, and that's on a toon not in top gear by any means). However, from a PvP standpoint, I have virtually no self-healing abilities right now. Art of War used to proc either an instant Exorcism or an instant Flash of Light. It no longer does FoL and only focuses on Exo. The only way I can heal myself at this point is to hope I have some Holy Power built up and use Word of Glory. Otherwise, I'm screwed and have to stop to cast a heal. There is so much damage output at this point that stopping to cast a spell or using my judgment won't work. From a PvE standpoint, there's a lot to work with and, as I said, can't save myself with a heal unless I stop to cast it or have some Holy Power that I can spare. The addition of Zealotry makes this easier, but those 20 seconds I'd rather be spamming Crusader Strike and Templares Verdict.

As for Holy, well, I've found all the different tools to be a bit overwhelming. I was able to heal through an instance the other night, but I also felt I had a good group that made the healing bearable. My mana is dropping like a rock, beacon only heals for 50% of the heal used instead of 100% and there is no Sacred Shield anymore. So, I basically have been sticking to Flash of Light and Holy Shock when it comes up. Three Holy Shocks fills my Holy Power and I can use Word of Glory to get a great heal off. Light of Dawn is another great spell, but only heals those in front of me (think mage's Cone of Cold, but in a heal). So I have FoL for the quick, small heal. Holy Light for the medium cast, medium heal. Divine Light is my long cast, big heal. Holy Shock is my instant. Light of Dawn is instant, but only heals for a certain range in front of me. And Word of Glory is an instant that I prefer to save up my Holy Power for so I can try to get a bigger heal off. It's all kind of confusing as I write it out, but I won't feel comfortable with it until I see some bigger mana pools.


I have yet to try fire, but frost and arcane are proving to be interesting. Arcane has basically been switched to a PvP spec. Frost is still a PvP spec, but I think they've increased the damage output from it. Arcane can still be used for PvE, but almost all the talents have to do with "stun this, knock back that". I still have to play around with that one. But damage seems to be great.


Three words: Oh. My. God.

The damage has been increased significantly. Destro is just turning out huge numbers, even for my lock who isn't in the best gear. A lot of it remains the same save for Bane of Havoc. Bane of Havoc doesn't do any outright damage, but it does 15% of the damage that I do to another target. So, I can put Bane of Havoc on one mob, focus fire a different mob and 15% of all the damage is going back to the initial mob. I'm also trying out Demonology again and I am very pleased with the results. Each minion now has more special abilities they can use (Fel Guards get a Bladestorm, an axe throw AND their cleave). Hand of Gul'dan is an awesome spell that works great for putting out AE spell damage. And the new Soul Shards are so much easier to deal with. I no longer have to give up a bag slot just to have souls. And I can essentially have souls at any given time, even if I don't have mobs to take them from. The rotations are interesting and fun and I might...just *might* be making my warlock into my new raiding toon. I dunno, we'll see. Wink


I have tried Shadow which is essentially the same as its always been. No more spirit tap, but now shadowy apparitions appear sometimes when doing damage. If the apparitions hit the target, they do some nice damage. I've also been playing Holy and haven't touched Disc yet. Holy has the ability Chakra, which is amazing. Priests also have a new ability called "Power Word: Chastise". PW:C is basically a damaging attack. But if you use Chakra, followed by a heal, PW:C will change to a helpful spell depending on what you used. For example, if I use Chakra, then cast Renew, then use PW:C it will change into what I like to call a "mega-renew". So you essentially have two awesome renew spells ticking away at once. Another casts an aura of light on the ground that, when stood in, heals everyone in it for a certain tick. And you can get multiples of these going on the same spot and just heal for crazy amounts. The other is a basic heal spell that just heals for a crap-ton. I'm very pleased with the changes in Holy and mana doesn't seem to be much of an issue.

That's all I can think of for now. Big Grin
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I havent had a chance to really group as Discipline yet. I am hoping to in the next few days so I can touch up the brief guide I have written. From what I have experienced, Discipline priests WILL be adding to the DPS and aside from that not much has changed. You have a significant amount of while casting mana regen, as well as mana pool so really I havent felt much of a difference at this point in the game, nor a need to change how we heal. I suppose using flash heal and penance more as our bubbles are a bit nerfed without full on mastery stats. When the new dungeons come out I suppose things will change more significantly where we will have to adjust how we do things.
While I haven't tried out Destruction or Affliction yet, I cannot get enough of Demonology!

First off, I love not having to manage soul shards. Before the patch came out, I was running an ICC10 with some friends and we were attempting Lich King over the course of a few nights. By the end of the raid each night, I was nearly out of soul shards from summoning my felguard, creating soulwells and soulstones, and the occassional use of Soulshatter when I got a little overzealous with DPS; it was really annoying, especially since with the less shards I had, the more wary I was of creating anything - even soulstones and an extra healthstone for myself mid-fight.

Now that I don't have to worry about it, I've been spamming soulstones and soulwells like no one's business. I've always kind of enjoyed some of the micromanagement of being a warlock, but soul shards were just a major pain in the rear, so I'm happy to see them go. Also: bag space. Woohoo!

I'm still getting used to a new spell rotation, but it's been working out great so far. I love Banes - Bane of Doom is my new best friends with its damage output (and those Ebon Imps it sometimes summons are really nifty!), and I love Banes just being a separate mechanic in general from Curses, because now I can Curse of the Elements up at the same time, which is darned useful. I also feel like I'm using a lot of my other spells now; while waiting to reapply my DoTs, I've always cast Shadowbolt, but now I'm using Incinerate a lot more and even Soulfire when Decimation procs. I'm really feeling the whole "shadow and fire" thing a Demonology warlock is supposed to be rocking a lot more now than I have in the past.

Also, Hand of Gul'dan is THE COOLEST THING EVER OMG I LOVE IT. Direct damage and that nifty aura AND I'M RAINING SHADOW AND FLAME FROM THE SKY! Muahahaha!

*ahem* Now that I've got that out of my system...

My DPS has overall been through the roof, I think. And the new Soulburn has been very helpful - sometimes my demon ends up getting itself killed during a boss fight, and being able to pop Soulburn and then instantly summon it back to my side saves a LOT of time and frustration. I have yet to try some of the other secondary affects (although the Healthstone one looks like it could come in handy in case of a very bad situation). I'd be interested to see what other spells can be affected by Soulburn in the future.

All in all, Gnome loves the changes to warlocks! Bring on the Cataclysm!
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I have played a few random instances with Daichallar and Aarloouoou.

Daichallar is a Prot warrior of-course. I have done a few of the harder 5-mans including Halls of Reflection. I was kinda dreading HoR but I ended up with a good group. The AoE was definitely lower. But with a little extra work, it isn't that big of a deal. The key is DPS that understands that things are not the same. The main differences I see is the way abilities work together.

Aarloouoou is of-course much more effected by the changes. The focus mechanic is great. It has gotten rid of the need for everything to be on a cool-down. So If I so choose, I can shoot two multishots right of or spam Arcane shot a 4 times in row. This is obviously not the best way to go about it, but the option is nice if the mob is a high damage dealing squishy mob of some sort. I actually thought I was going to have to wait for focus to come back before I could do anything again. But many abilities cost no focus, such as steady shot, which actually gives you some focus.

All in all, I am very happy with the changes to hunters, not sure much has really changed with prot warriors except AoE, and I still need to try out my priest, shaman, and mage.

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