Sunday, April 11, 2010

Cataclysm Druid Preview

I was never a big fan of Tree form. I like seeing my armor upgrades. The art on the tree is not as good as the other forms. I don't like not easily being able to do damage or CC when I need to. I don't like the feel of healing as a tree. There's nothing bad-ass about it. When I'm healing, I'm healing the shit out of stuff. And I like to feel like someone to be reckoned with. You don't fear a vegetable.

In general I'm surprised by how much backlash there's been to the change. A lot of seems to be coming from the blogging community. I guess I can understand if you've got tree artwork all over your site and in your blog name, you identify a little bit more with the form. Sylly is one of the only bloggers that seems, at least, indifferent.

The new eclipse is cool, but a lot will depend on the exact implementation and numbers. I'm pretty sure based on all the Blizzard discussion that they wouldn't be pursuing this change unless they were sure they could get it right, so I'm reasonably confident it will come out well. I think it might be like a pendulum that has momentum and gravity where you try and keep it swinging for maximum effect.

In general, the Mastery feature has really started to feel interesting. Before when it was announced, it just sounded like a dumping ground for some passive stats. And for some classes, the announced mastery bonuses were more like I expected. The hunter and rogue ones were just bonuses to specific aspects of their damage that suited the tree's focus. But the mage and shadow priest ones all affected the gameplay of the class, each in a unique way. The flavour of each spec is really defined now by the unique 3rd mastery bonus. It's neat that you gain this sense of your character's spec from Mastery as soon as you spend your first point at level 10. In the case of the Balance druids, you spend your first point in Balance at level 10, and BAM - your UI will change to some kind of sun and moon meter. Welcome to balance. I think that's cool.