Mar 192012
 

Lots of infos for everyone. Of course, if you want the full lowdown, go here, but here’s some tidbits that I found interesting.

Glyphs

Lots of fun new glyphs! From wowhead:

  • Glyph of Stars: Moonkin Form ability is replaced with Astral Form, conferring all the same benefits, but now appearing as an astrally enchanted version of your normal humanoid form.
  • Glyph of the Chameleon: Each time you shapeshift into Cat Form or Bear Form, your shapeshifted form will have a random hair color.
  • Glyph of the Orca: Your Aquatic Form now appears as an Orca.
  • Glyph of the Stag: Your Travel Form now appears as a Stag and can be used as a mount by party members.
  • Glyph of the Treant: Allows you to shapeshift into Treant Form. The act of shapeshifting frees the caster of movement slowing effects.
  • The Moonbeast: You can now cast Healing Touch, Rejuvenation, and Tranquility without canceling Moonkin Form.

Yes, resto druids get tree form back, maybe everybody will be happy now! As someone who’s not overly concerned with how the game looks, I’m not really for or against these, but the idea of getting mounted is cool, I guess? Obviously, Moonbeast has some utility. Note that all the Prime glyphs are going away, so take that into account when you’re thinking about how the game will play out in Mists; some of the commonly-used glyphs will get baked into the abilities, but some will not.

Challenge Modes/Scenarios
I’m very surprised WoW hasn’t integrated any of the functionality of WoW-Progress/GuildOx to this point, but this is a shot across that bow. There’s a huge audience for competitive PvE (hence the proliferation of third-party guides/etc), much much larger than exists for PvP. Also, it keeps 5-man content in-play long after it’s been made obsolete by the patch cycle. Genius move. In contrast, I’m somewhat disappointed in the scenarios. I understand the rationale for them (hard to get groups for group quests) but there was always that fun feeling of coming back after you’d leveled a bit and smashing it yourself, which this probably eliminates.

 

Pet Battles
Not much to say here, but over/under on the amount of time before the optimal pet setup is theorycrafted? Also, “stats can be random when you catch the pets.” Does that mean you can release and recatch?

 

Monks
I’m fascinated by the Monk class and how the mechanics will turn out. Windwalkers look a lot like cats, but one of the big differences (so far) is that chi is not target-specific. That’s huge for target switching.  Also, it’s odd that several of the abilities do more damage at range then at melee. Energizing Wine is a mostly-carbon-copy of Tiger’s Fury (cough). Muscle Memory is going to make balancing (and stat weights) hell. Tigereye Brandy feels like cheating. For Mistweavers, Revival IS cheating. as is Surging Mists. Stagger looks horribly OP for Brewmasters; if it stays like that, I don’t see how you’d want any other tanks in a burst situation. I wouldn’t get too excited over all of these; consider these abilities a wish-list of what the class designer wants pre-balancing.

 

Raids
I know this is a horrendous oversimplification, but what raiding tiers are generally considered successes in WoW’s “modern era,” AKA Wrath? I’d say Ulduar, ICC,  the BWD/BoT duo, and maybe Naxx (too easy for many, but an excellent raiding introduction). Number of bosses in these raids? 14, 12, 11, and 15. Number of bosses in the less successful raiding tiers, such as TotC, FL, and DS? 5, 7, and 8. Quantity has a quality all its own, I reckon, and thus I’m very excited to see 14 bosses planned for the first tier of Mists.

 

From Tom Chilton, paraphrased: “Spine of Deathwing is the most epic concept we’ve ever gone after for an encounter, but I wouldn’t say it was the most interesting…” Heh.

 

The individualized rolls is great, though I predict lots of ‘rigged!’ I hope they consider this for normal-mode raiding as well, especially for 10-mans who can frequently be imbalanced in terms of gear demand.

 

VP’s being using as an augment instead of as a gear source? Hmm. I like it. Raiders can supplement gearing holes by boosting heroic pieces; those who stick to 5-mans have longer until they can’t improve anymore. Sounds good, as long as VP’s remain relatively scarce (ie they better keep a good weekly cap on it, like they do now, else you’ll get more burnouts).

 

Bonus raid rolls for doing dailies? Yes, please, but can we make the dailies less…daily? Weekly would be good.

 

Okay, that’s all I’ve got for now. Definitely browse around and read some of the interviews; I really feel that they “get it” a lot more for this expansion pack then they did for Cataclysm.

 

Oh, and I’m going to be pessimistic and say that open beta will not start until late June/July. Less a matter of “is the beta ready?” and more a matter of “will the beta draw players and attention away from Diablo 3?”
 Posted by at 8:47 pm

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