Archive for the ‘MoP’ Category

Beta: Scarlet Halls Video and Spec Thoughts   1 comment

Above is a video from heroic Scarlet Halls. The zone combines the old Armory and Library from Scarlet Monestary. I really enjoyed the zone, and thought the upgrades to the encounters were fun.

I am running the same spec and stats as I have for the other heroic videos I’ve posted to date. I had a few folks ask how I was specc’d so I thought I’d take a little bit of time to talk about what I’m thinking regarding my resto spec as I move from the beta to live.

Tier One: In this tier I’ve been playing with Wild Charge, which is what I have indicated above – however I believe pretty firmly that Feline Swiftness will be the superior ability for PvE, and what I will be taking on live, provided nothing changes in that tier.

Tier Two: I strongly feel that Nature’s Swiftness is the best contender in this tier for PvE. Cenarion Ward has some potential, but not enough to make me beleive I should drop NS to pick it up.

Tier Three: This tier is almost optional for resto, as such take whatever you want. I found typhoon to be very valuable while leveling, and of the abilities available has the most potential to be useful in PvE – but I don’t anticipate getting much use of it in raids.

Tier Four: As I stated the other day, in this tier I prefer ToL over Force of Nature. A lot of this boils down to the fact that I want to retain control of my heals and not give that up to the treants AI. Assuming that the two have roughly the same output potential, I think that this tier is ultimately going to come down to your personal preference as a player.

Tier Five: This is another set of talents that are almost optional, and you can likely take whatever you want. I have grown quite fond of might bash. It is quite good while leveling and is a like a Druid Hammer of Justice, which can be useful on trash, etc. The only downside is the limited range, but of all of the abilities I feel that this will translate the best into a PvE setting – but is certainly not game breaking. Take whatever you want in this tier, but don’t undervalue the power of a well timed stun!

Tier Six: I talked at length about this tier the other day, but I’ll add a few thoughts here as well. Of all of the healer classes, I really feel that Druids received the weakest final tier. However, lemons/lemonade, etc. As such, your choice in this tier is going to really be driven by your preference, assuming that all three remain relatively equal in thruoughput. If you want to work with weaving wrath in for one, more powerful, heal – and find this game play intriguing, you may want to opt for Dream. Personally, that style of play does not appeal to me. As such, I have opted for the boosted healing found in Nature’s Vigil, and anticipate that this is what I will select on live as well. I am still toying around with the boosted stats found in Heart of the Wild – but not thrilled with anything else about the talent.

What are your thoughts on the talents as we push closer to release? Which a abilities do you think you will be favoring?

Posted August 3, 2012 by Beruthiel in Beta, MoP, Video

On MoP Gating   16 comments

Have a video of Heroic Scholomance.

Yesterday Blizzard’s devs dropped a bit of a bombshell on the raiding community that was met with mixed reactions. Namely, they revealed that while there are three instances comprising Mists’ first raid tier, only one will be open at launch. Not only that, but they alluded to the first instance, Mogu’shan Palace, not being opened until the second week the game is live. There was talk about how second two zones in the tier were tied together in a story arc, that admittedly looks kind of cool, and would be released a few weeks after Mogu’shan Palace became available.

These announcements were met with a combination of sighs of relief from some and anger from others. I wanted to take a minute and explain my thoughts on the topic, which may well be a minority opinion amongst progression raiders. I like that the instances will be gated. Let me see if I can articulate why I feel this way. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted July 31, 2012 by Beruthiel in Brain Dump, Deep Thoughts, MoP, Raiding

MoP Beta: Thoughts on Mana, the Druid Toolkit and Early Healing at Level 90   1 comment

This weekend I spent some time in the beta trying to get a feel for both mana and healing at level 90. Since I learned early on that I was likely going to be unavailable for just about all of the raid testing that was happening on weekdays while I was still at work, I was fairly unmotivated to continue my level push to 90. I wasn’t going to be able to contribute where I wanted, being raid testing, and there were better things I could spend my time on. However, after the surprise round of weekend testing (which was blatantly obvious in being scheduled to combat a Guild Wars 2 beta weekend), I decided to get my ass in gear and push out the last two levels on the beta. Granted, I would be shocked if we see another set of weekend raid tests, but nonetheless if they are appear, I will be ready.

Anyhow, this is just a really long winded way of saying “I’m not qualified to tell you how your mana is going to be in raids”. I’ve talked to a few people who are doing some of the beta testing, and they’ve indicated that mana is tight – but that it’s tight across the board and all healers are in the same boat.

What I do feel qualified to spend a little bit of time talking about is how your mana and spells feel before you enter a raid environment. I spent quite a bit of time on Sunday running five of the nine heroics available: Gate of the Setting Sun, Scarlet Monastery, Scarlet Halls, Scholomance and Mogu’shan Palace. I ran all of them with Brade tanking and three PuG DPS. I’ve captured FRAPS of all of the bosses for each instance, and throughout the week I will be posting them, starting with Gate of the Shattered Sun below. I intend to run the last four of the heroic instances throughout the week, and will also offer some feedback on those as well. One thing that I’d like to make a note of with regards to these videos is that we moved the beta off of my SSD to free up space on it, which means that the beta is now running on the same drive that I assigned for FRAPS to write to, which in turn means that I have a little more lag running FRAPS and you may occasionally see some choppiness in the video as a result.

Now that I’ve gotten all of the qualifiers out of the way, let’s get down to my thoughts, shall we? (Man, no wonder my posts can be so long, it takes me hundreds of words just to get to the point!) Read the rest of this entry »

Posted July 30, 2012 by Beruthiel in Beta, Druid Healing, MoP, Mushrooms

Fixing the Forest, Part IV – Symbiosis   23 comments

I’m not going to lie, I’ve been avoiding this post. At first it was because I told myself “I want practical experience with symbiosis before writing about it”, but even as I sit here today I’m trying to think of other things I can do to avoid talking about the big pink elephant in the room that is Symbiosis. I suspect that part of the problem that I’m having with this is that I can see a good number of things being really great for our PvP Resto brethren, but it still doesn’t remove the underwhelmed feeling that I get when I think about the ability for PvE restos.

The Problem: I think the biggest issue I have with symbiosis is that I don’t really feel compelled to utilize it. That is to say that in most circumstances, the things that I gain from the ability just aren’t something that I resort to when the shit hits the fan to make things better. While some of the abilities can potentially be lifesaving for me individually (ice block, ice bound fortitude), I am having a real issue resolving the fact that I feel really indifferent about having to use our staple “new” ability for this expansion. I understand that it’s going to share around some raid utility, which will be more important in smaller raids and groups than larger raids, and that we shouldn’t throw the baby out with the bath water before we see how it works in a raid setting; but to me, the fact that I can completely ignore the ability in my most “oh shit” moments to date and still be just as effective as I was before symbiosis is really hard for me to reconcile. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted May 16, 2012 by Beruthiel in Beta, Druid Healing, MoP

Shado-pan Monastery and Mogu’Shan Palace, Druid Style   Leave a comment

I had time over the weekend to run the two new instances on the beta. I was level 87 when I did them, and was 100% in the Cataclysm gear that I transferred Beru onto the beta wearing (appx. 405 iLevel, 2700 spirit). As long as I was smart about healing my mana felt fine. I still  had to be careful not to heal poorly, as doing so did mean that I felt a pinch on my mana, but as long as I made good decisions I was okay. One thing that I will comment on is the new cooldown on the dispel mechanic. We had a particularly bad trash pull in Mogu’shan palace in which the mobs put out a fairly nasty debuff. I will say that the cooldown on dispelling in a 5 man definitely made me think about who to dispel and who to let the debuff tick on and try to heal through. I actually kind of liked having to think through this in the intimate setting of five mans, but do have some concerns as to how it may play out in a larger raid setting.

The other thing I’d like to comment on is Symbiosis. When I remembered to put it up, I tried to put it up on someone that it would be moderately useful. However, I failed to actually utilize any of my abilities gained. Ok…well, I may have lifegriped and over-eager tank who wouldn’t give me a second to drink before charging to to pull trash, but outside of that, I really didn’t use it at all. To me, this seems to be somewhat problematic. While I wasn’t trilled about mushrooms, at least I try to use them, and try to find ideal times to benefit from them. With Symbiosis I can honestly say that at this juncture in my play, I may as well not even have it as an ability. Sure, it’s my fault for being shitty and forgetting to utilize it as much as I could – but if I’m going to be honest outside of the time I gave it to a mage and a DK, I gained no benefit because the other members of my group gave me nothing particularly useful to make me want to use it. Part of that may be because Monks currently give me swim speed (not final….), warriors give intimidating roar, shaman give me spiritwalker’s grace and I get cleanse from paladins. None of which are particularly helpful (or at all) in the majority of situations. I think I will probably do a separate post about this problem – but I did want to mention it now – in case you were wondering what I thought of it/if I used it.

As for the instances themselves, I will say that I was very impressed. They looked beautiful, the mechanics in them were fresh and interesting and I enjoyed my participation in them – even when things didn’t quite go my way.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to let me know.

Posted May 14, 2012 by Beruthiel in MoP

Fixing the Forest, Part III: Level 90 Druid Talents – A Resto Perspective   23 comments

Apparently while I was somewhere over the Rocky Mountains yesterday, Blizzard made a change to the level 90 druid talents. I think that it is safe to say the it was pretty unanimously agreed upon that a change was needed, as the old talents were very lackluster and didn’t really offer any dynamic decisions. Druids sat by the wayside turning green with envy as other classes were tended to, and growing ever greener as new things were announced and druids seemingly continued to be overlooked by the developers. Well, the crab himself emerged and gave us a bit of hope and a lot of needed developer presence. While my green isn’t entirely gone, I have gone down a few shades with yesterday’s announcement. While I’m still pretty sure that none of the devs are playing a druid, at least I know we are finally getting some much needed attention.

The question that we have to address with the announced changes is “are these the changes we were looking for?”.  Well, in an attempt to answer that from a resto perspective I think we need to take a look at what we were presented and talk a little bit about what the changes offer us. As such, let’s take a look. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted May 8, 2012 by Beruthiel in Druid Healing, MoP

Stormstout Brewery, Druid Style   Leave a comment

I had a little bit of time today, so I decided that I’d run Stormstout Brewery. It was the first instance I’d done since hitting 86, and I wanted to get a feel for how my mana held up and if healing felt any different, or more strained. Ultimately, my mana was fine. I was never at risk of being completely dry, including a pull where I aggro’d an extra pack, we lost a DPS and a DPS went AFK (it was a VERY long pull). My healing felt pretty good and aside from not understanding some mechanics (more on that later), I didn’t really ever feel that I struggled to keep my group alive. Now, the video capture that I did here, was from the second time that I cleared through the instance. Since I knew what to expect, I thought “hey, let’s fraps!”.

While this was largely the case, when we got to the final boss in the zone, I was humbled to realize that he uses different mechanics and isn’t always the same. So imagine my surprise when I didn’t have my “bubbly” jump really high debuff and instead something else happened. It took me a few cycles before my brain clicked enough to realize what the bubble debuff did, and once that happened, we were set. However, until that point there was sheer panic on my part the very first time I encountered the bubbles and couldn’t heal. A little less panic when I actually figured out how to pick the damn bubble up and realized there was just no healing in that phase. And finally bliss when the lightbulb went off and I figured it out. However, I decided to keep this boss in, rather than re-capturing, because I think it illustrates that we still have the capability of dealing with things when everything goes awry.

The one thing I will say is that I didn’t really use mushrooms nearly as much as I did in the Temple of the Jade Serpent. Partly because there wasn’t really a great place for them, and in the occurance of the last boss, because when everything went to hell in a hand basket “OMG MUSHROOM” wasn’t really the first thing I thought of in terms of (barely) keeping things together. Regardless, I hope you enjoy and please feel free to let me know if you have any questions!

Posted May 1, 2012 by Beruthiel in MoP