Oct 202008
 

Lots of us have encountered this scene in the battlegrounds (BGs:) There’s the Pally, let’s start working on him. I’tll take awhile, but…. WTF!?! (appear at spirit healer)

About That Squishing Noise…

Yes, right now is the time of the Retribution Paladin. They’re lean, mean, squishing machines laying waste to anyone who stands in their way. I don’t play a Pally, my 40 is collecting dust right now, but I’ve been on the receiving end of a few of them in the BGs. It’s not bad if I can land a dismantle and they don’t bubble, but otherwise? I’ve never been slaughtered quite so quickly.

Not that I know what I’m doing, but sheesh.

I’m of two minds on this, especially for long time players. For ages Pallies have been underpowered in some areas and the subject of much complaining from their fans (and which class hasn’t?) so it’s kinda cool that they are now the destruction/murder machine of choice. On the other hand, since I play a Rogue… ;)

My kid has been playing Paladins and Warriors since the original beta, claims they are his favorite classes, and has complained about their damage and abilities for as long as he’s been playing them. I tease him about being a masochist, since those are his classes of choice and their damage has traditionally been …lacking. I’ve also been kidding him about how he must hate the current situation with the Ret. Pally running roughshod over everything.

Word has it that in the Wrath of the Lich King beta test characters were balanced for level 80, but that too little testing was done at the lower levels. The call from dead and envious players, since the 3.0 patch on the 14th, has been heard and the official word is that the nerf is coming (which will make my kid happy. I think. )

Supposedly the nerf is going to clip the burst damage, but will leave longer term DPS about the same. We’ll see. Buffs and nerfs (and patches) usually have their fair share of unintended side-effects.

So What’s the Word?

This post pretty much covers what the fuss is about:

Retribution Paladins: Fair and Balanced – So I tried my hand as a Retribution Paladin this weekend. I had heard all the complaints about how overpowered Retribution was at the moment, so I thought I would get some first hand experience for myself. …

WoWinsider notes the the coming changes are aimed at PvP Paladins and will leave PvE pretty much (in theory) unchanged. It also has a Ret build for PvE types. I’m going to log into my rust covered Pally right now and play with them for a few.

Patch 3.0.2 primer for Retribution Paladins – Retribution deals so much pain that we’ve sent the rest of player base running to Ghostcrawler crying for a nerf. And we’re getting nerfed. To the ground. Don’t panic. The changes are really, mostly aimed at PvP Paladins — okay, …

Movie time – Pally testing from the 3.02 patch:

Mp 3.0.2 patch paladin retribution Overpowered ? – Category: PvP Summary: My paladin testing out patch 3.0.2 and retribution paladins are pretty overpowered. *…

Here’s a good analysis of the Ret Paladin from Blessings of Kings:

Are Retribution Paladins Overpowered? – Half the challenge of playing a Ret paladin is actually getting to melee range. It’s not like Retribution can Charge or Stealth or Death Grip. If a player lets a Ret paladin get in range, she has already lost half the battle. …

Zuggy (a hardcore PvPer) has some blue posts on Blizzard’s thoughts about the incoming nerfs:

Retribution Paladin Nerfs Incoming – There’s no denying that retribution paladins are insanely overpowered and fortunately (or unfortunately depending…) the nerf stick was officially confirmed earlier this evening. While there are some needed changes to the class to …

And SpoonCraft has details on some of the specific nerfs:

Retribution Paladin Changes Coming Soon (Oct. 17th) – As I stated yesterday, we are happy with Ret’s PvE damage and sustatined damage in PvP, but were concerned that the burst damage in PvP could be too high. We discussed this for literally hours yesterday, which was certainly not the …

So what are your thoughts on the Retribution Pallies and their current or upcoming states?

Oct 142008
 

The Patch has landed.

1.2 gigs of data, wow. Not so bad if you’ve been playing regularly, the background downloaded already has it. If you’ve taken a break for awhile, well… :)

From the new splash screen when you log in to the modified talents and trees to the new Inscription skill, there are a lot of changes here. Check out the Latest Patch Notes for details. Also keep in mind that the patch has probably broken at least some of your addons. I referred to that previously and linked to an addon update list.

So what I’ve put together here is a collection of posts regarding the new talents and builds. I did this previously (Level 80 WoW Talents And Builds) and this new post links to new and, hopefully, updated info.

Dual Talent Builds and What’s Not in This Patch:

Dual Talent Specs – At last — “…And my personal favorite: Dual Talent Specs. This new feature should be added to the game in one of the content patches following the release of Wotlk. Hopefully in Patch 3.1.” What does that mean? It means you’ll be able to save 2 different Talent Specs for your characters, and that you’ll be able to switch between the two as much as you want, any time you want, besides while in combat or in arenas.

Breaking News: Patch 3.0.2 will not contain all major class changes – There were spells and abilities missing, talents not enumerated, and generally the notes looked as if they were lifted from a version of the game done a few weeks ago. Apparently this was intentional. Ghostcrawler made a post moments …

Class Talent Discussions:

Hunters: BigRedKitty: 3.0.2 Hunter talent trees – The major purpose of this column is to give you, the WoW Insider reader, a point of reference. You know our writing, you know our play-style. You should know our limitations and the areas at which we’re not too shabby. …

Warlocks: Patch 3.0.2 primer for Warlocks – In fact, out of all the 11-point talents, Soul Link is the only one that should give us any pause for thought. Considering that for about a month, we can only allocate up to 10 points in another tree if we choose to get a 51-point …

Mages: Mage WotLK Talents & Developer Q & A - She has done a great job already working with many of classes and now she’s finally making it to the mage class, particularly the information regarding the new spell frostfire bolt. Initially I really didn’t understand the purpose of …

Priests: Spiritual Guidance: Patch 3.0.2 – Holy and Disc Priest talent review – This post will cover all of the new Holy and Discipline talents that will be accessible when the patch becomes live. Not only that, I’ve offered up some suggestions on different builds to remain raid viable (at least to the rare few …

Shaman: Going Resto in Three-point-Oh – New Talent: Cleanse Spirit (Requires 5 points in purification and 30 points in Restoration) – 1 point – Cleanse the spirit of a friendly target, removing 1 poison effect, 1 disease effect, and 1 curse effect. Shaman get an all-in-one …

Warriors: The Care and Feeding of Warriors: The Door Swings Open Pt 1 – Honestly, the difficulty here is not in finding good protection talents you can spec into, it’s in picking which ones to talk to you about now. Some of these talents (like Gag Order) only get really good once you have abilities you …

Ferals: 3.0.2 for Feral Druids – In a few hours, when the servers come back up, patch 3.0.2 is going to hit, and WoW will change drastically. Every tree is get revamped to a greater or lesser extent, and extended up to 51-point talents. The Feral tree changes, …

Rogues: Four Seasons of TBC, Rogue 3.0 Specs – However, without prep which mutilate doesn’t get until WOTLK, the spec is severely lacking in outs and terrible at catching mages, one of the most dominant classes in 3.0. For offensive comps, perhaps a prep spec is still worth …

Paladin: Prot Paladin Talent Build – Block hurts them afterall. We’ll see. Lastly no Holy, nothing in the Ret tree beyond the above, and as the levels tick toward 80, they’ll all get spent in the Prot tree. Tagged: build, Paladin, pally, prot, talent.

Tankadin Preparing Your Tankadin for Patch 3.0: Part 3: Changed Tools – 10/8 – Part 3: Changes to Existing Talents and Spells 10/9 – Part 4: New Talents, and suggested Trees 10/10 – Part 5: The New Threat Rotation or 96969 10/11 – Part 6: Threat Stats for Protection Paladins and Tank Gear Reitemization …

That should be enough to chew on for now. Feel free to comment or, if you like the post, use the share buttons below.

PS: Wrath is bringing a lot of changes and Northrend is a pretty good sized place with a lot going on. Take a good look at the Killer Guides’ Wrath of the Lich King guide – It will make your trek to 80 much easier and much more lucrative.

Sep 252008
 

Paladins in Warhammer Online? Is this what Paladins were meant to be? From Blessings of Kings, the Warrior Priest:

I gave the Warrior Priest in Warhammer Online a whirl. This class is awesome! If the class plays at endgame like it does now, Blizzard is going to lose paladins to WAR. (At least, if there are any old-school hybrid paladins left.)

Do you play the Pen and Paper RPGs, such as DnD? I have been since, oh, ’79 or so, right about the time the original DnD Player’s Handbook came out. What about you? Tobald’s MMO Blog asks the same question:

My pen & paper roleplaying group just started a new campaign, this time playing the Warhammer Fantasy Roleplaying game (2005 edition). I’m playing with these guys for years now, various campaigns, usually every second Monday evening. But we are all around 40ish, and sometimes I feel like being a dinosaur when rolling dice and scribbling on character sheets.

The rest: Do you play pen & paper RPGs?

Spooncraft has some thoughts on leveling Blacksmithing before Wrath, or waiting till after it hits. Ask Spoon: Should I Level my Professions now or wait until Wrath?

Have a Hunter who’s approaching 70? Check out Aspect of the Hare’s The Hunter Enchants Cheat Sheet: Burning Crusade Edition

You want enchants. I see a lot of freshly-minted-70 hunters who do not have their gear enchanted, or have them enchanted incorrectly. Fear not, Pike is here to help while her WoWish avatar Tawyn goes off to get smashed at Brewfest (Seriously, part of Tawyn’s RP is that she’s an alcohol fiend. Brew-of-the-Month-Club has her name all over it.)

In this guide, I’m going to tell you the best enchants you can get per item slot, and how to get them. As a forewarning, do note that this list is PvE-oriented. So let’s start at the top:

Zuggy has some remarks on the Rogue’s Assassination tree: Rogue Opportunity Changes – Build 8982. Of course, I expect that any changes to the Rogue (and other class) talents aren’t finalized yet. Expect more in the near future.

There’s been some pretty big changes to the rogue class during this wotlk beta, none larger than the change to mutilate and positional attacks, but blizzard just tossed out yet another curve ball…take a look at the rogue changes for beta build 8992.

And in the This is Just Fraggin’ Cool department: Today, I was Reminded Why I Play WoW

Edit – In the “Some Things I’d Really Like to See in WoW” department: City of Heroes is coming out with some cool stuff.

  • Multiple Builds. One character, two builds. Wouldn’t this be a cool thing for raiders who also PvP, or Visa Versa? I’ve seen it suggested a few times by WoW players.
  • Leveling Pact. Have a buddy that you like to play with, but one or the other of you gets to play (far) more often than the other? CoH is going to implement a leveling pact where you and your buddy’s XP is shared. As either of you levels the other gains XP as well, whether or not they’re online at the time. That way you and your partner stay at the same level.
  • And, of course, the CoH character builder, which just pwns every other one out there.
Sep 212008
 

The Wrath is coming. Time to hide.

Of course, one of the big changes in the Wrath of the Lich King expansion is the changes to all the various talent trees. As you probably know, Blizzard isn’t just adding a few new talents or increasing the level cap to 80. No no no, there’s a little more to it than that – they’re making large changes to existing talents and shuffling around their exact position in the talent trees.

So what I’ve put together here is a collection of posts, from various places, that discuss the level 80 talents and changes. Some of these also offer build suggestions, both from raiding and PvP points of view. In addition, If you want to play around with talent builds for your own characters you’ll find the level 80 WoW talent calculator here.

Of course, the changes aren’t 100% finished, all of this is still in beta test, and Blizzard has been known to make big last minute changes. We can count on more changes along with the usual collection of nerfs and maybe some buffs. Still, it’s a place to start thinking about how you might spec your characters when you upgrade to Wrath.

Update 10/14: The 3.0 patch has arrived and here’s an update post on what’s happening with the WoW Talents and Builds.

’nuff said, here ya go!

WotLK: Build 8962 – 4 Extra Points for Frost – When the WotLK expansion hits, as I level up, I will start filling in the Arcane tree until I get Focus Magic. When I hit 80 and start raiding again, the talent build that I will most likely be using is this: 80 PvE/PvP Frost.

WotLK Paladins May Have “Shocking” Potential – All of the above said, the following, were I to PvP as a Shockadin at level 80, would be my talent build without question:.  Allow me a couple caveats with the above build: …

Tanked! Revaluing Feral Combat Talents in Beta Build 8926 – The pictured talent build is essentially what I’d like to be using at 80. All PH NYI (place holder, not yet implemented) talents are now “live” on beta, and it’s pertinent to note that the talent “Mother Bear” has been renamed to the …

Want to hit level 80 fast? Looking for ways to familiarize yourself with Northrend without wasting valuable playtime running around in circles? Check out the Killer Guides’ Wrath guide and get ready to go before the expansion hits.

Shock and Awe: The Art of Dual Shockadins in WotLK – Both of these assumptions are based off of items I found in the WotLK database at WoWhead situated around an item level of 200 (the item level which seems to be the base for epics at level 80). In addition to these two assumptions, …

Why 3.0 will change Arena entirely – Much like when Blizzard imeplemented the WoW 2.0 41-point talent trees into the game shortly before TBC, and much of the dissaray it caused, the WoW 3.0 talents are almost entirely based around players being level 80 and consequently …

Truckload ‘o Changes – At level 80, this 80 spellpower. Much higher than it was before. I believe it is still weaker than Flametongue Totem and doesn’t stack with it. Twin Disciplines – The tooltip was fixed to read: Increases your spell power on instant …

8926 DK changes, Blue Posts, and Site News – They may be fun in that you get a lot for your money, but they work against the design goal of being able to build a customized talent tree for your character. They also make spec parity or class balance a lot harder when there are …

A look at our Bear Tanking future in Wrath – Clearly (I hope) a class that could do rogue-level dps and warrior-level tanking with the same talent build is the kind of thing that makes other players a little miffed. But we’re reevaluating a lot of old (and some admittedly tired) …

[Druid] The 3.0 patch – cat build edition – That’s about .66% dps per talent point, which just isn’t that good. This may not make the cut at level 80; it’s still lower per point than master shapeshifter. Rend and Tear barely makes the cut. Assuming that you’re only hitting …

WotLK Hunter Pets – Major Changes – Pets will still have to level to some degree, but it will be a lot more transparent than it is now. A level 1 beast trained by a level 80 hunter will hop to level 70 instantly. That way the pet isn’t completely useless while you try

Edit: Big Red Kitty says – Beta Talent Builds, Just Say No – “OK, see? The hunter class is going to be totally mixed up. Anything and everything people have said, including us, is kaput and moot.”

Edit: By the way, don’t forget to grab your free Death Knight Starter Area Leveling Guide.

May 162008
 

Found an interesting post on teamwork in the battlegrounds that I agree with totally. From WoWbasic.com:

One of the things that bothers not only me, but many others is the lack of teamwork within the battlegrounds these days. A good example of this was an Alterac Valley that I was participating in only this morning. While trying to capture the Dun Baldar South Bunker I was fighting a Paladin who had been attacking a Warlock from our team. This in its self is nothing unusual, but what happened during the fight was. While fighting the Paladin the Warlock ran behind a pillar and stopped fighting him. In addition a holy priest came in and stood there while I was being chewed up by the Paladin and the Archers at the same time. Not one heal nor any help with dispensing the Paladin led to my ultimate death right as I killed the Paladin.

Here’s the rest: Teamwork in the battlegrounds – A lost strategy

For myself, I’ll jump in when I can and help out. I like winning these things and teamwork is a big step in that direction. And we do win these things when we can get enough people to participate.

More tips on Battlegrounds PvP and teamwork

Some of these are Alliance specific, but the thoughts apply just as much to Horde.

Teamwork in the battlegrounds – A lost strategy – While there are still a good many of us who play by the rules of good teamwork wins Battlegrounds there are yet more who believe that it is like solo questing where you do not need be helped nor help others. …

Battlegrounds! You Lose! – Alliance: everyone just wants the marks and honor with as little team work as possible. most of them travel alone. Buffs, yeah once in a blue moon before the battle starts. Heals, Ha forget it. Sometimes they will start as a group and …

Taking It to the Horde! Tips for Ret PvP in Battlegrounds – Teamwork is vital to being successful in Warcraft battlegrounds. How does this apply to the Ret Paladin? Well first off the Paladin as a class is group-oriented. Blessings and Auras do not diminish in power as you extend them to more …