Thursday, June 18

Blue speaks, I drop my jaw.

There are so many things in the PTR patch notes that all I will do is link the MMO champ site, instead of copying the whole thing here.

There is a lot of things going on that don't make sense to me, some things that look great and the rest, well, are the rest. Of course, all is subject to change and so these changes warrant further watching in the weeks to come.

Of note:

Flight Form: Can now be learned at level 60. Flight speed increased to 150%.
Innervate: Duration reduced to 10 seconds, and cooldown reduced to 3 minutes. This means each use of Innervate will give half as much mana as before, but it will be available twice as often.
Lifebloom: The final heal that occurs when this spell blooms has been reduced by 20% on the base and on the spell power coefficient.
Mangle: Ranks 4 and 5 base points reduced by about 11%. Scaling from attack power unchanged.
Rake: Ranks 6 and 7 base points on initial and periodic damage reduced by about 7%. Scaling from attack power unchanged.
Rip: Ranks 8 and 9 base points and points per combo point reduced by about 6%. Scaling from attack power unchanged.
Savage Defense: The animation for gaining this buff will no longer make the bear stand upright
Shred: Ranks 8 and 9 base points reduced by about 10%. Scaling from attack power unchanged.
Swipe (Cat): Percent of weapon damage done reduced from 260% to 250%.
Travel Form: Can now be learned at level 16.

* Balance
o Balance of Power: Now reduces all spell damage taken by 3/6%, rather than reducing the chance to be hit by spells by 2/4%.
o Eclipse: The Starfire and Wrath buffs from this talent are now on separate 30 second. cooldowns. In addition, it is not possible to have both buffs active simultaneously.
o Owlkin Frenzy: Now also restores 2% base mana every 2 seconds for the duration (10 seconds) in addition to its current effects.
* Restoration
o Empowered Touch: Now also increases the amount of bonus healing effects for Nourish by 10/20%.
o Improved Barkskin: No longer provides dispel resistance to all effects on the druid, but now reduces the chance your Barkskin is dispelled by an additional 35/70%.

I'm scared of the idea that innervate needs to be casted more often, considering they are changing the mana regen on Replenishment. This says to me they are planing some real mana sucking encounters in the months to come.

With the changes to Empowered Touch, a possible Nourish/MT healing spec could look like this which drops GoEM in favor of Nature's Grace and Empowered Touch. Very interesting. I'm sure some resto's out there will be excited but since I've been rocking it on raid heals, I will not be moving my precious points yet. In addition, it seems rather odd to implement this when the T8 focuses on Rejuv based ablities, but would be nice for T7 and who knows what T9 has.

Lastly, I suppose Blizz didn't like the 20k crits on lifebloom. Shame. It's not like it procd Living Seed or anything and usually was overheal. /shake fist.

Chain Heal: Jump distance increased to 10 yards. In addition, the amount of healing now decreases by 40% as it jumps to each new target, instead of 50%

Improved Water Shield: This talent now has a 10/20/30% chance to be triggered by Chain Heal, and the charges of Water Shield are no longer consumed by this talent.

Kinda ok. The rest of the changes make me feel like Shamans are still under appreciated by blizz. Interesting way to deal with the Shaman's mana regen issues, but perhaps changing the mechanic of Elemental Focus to proc off Damaging and Healing spells. Cuz, you know, it reduces mana cost of both. Sadly, though, the trees are bloated a bit anyway and finding a way for a resto to fit it in seems damn near impossible. However, since Druids and Priests are able to Clearcast, I don't see why shaman can't either. At least the silly little orbs of water don't pop anymore.

Yet another overhaul for DK's with a talent refund to boot. I'd QQ about having to respec my alt every time I play her, but I don't think my DK friends would find it funny.

The ravasaur trainer Mor'vek has returned to Un'Goro and will offer to help Horde players raise and train a Venomhide Ravasaur as a mount... if they can survive the creature's deadly poison.

This seems too good to be true. The poor guy has been sitting in the jungle for several years, watching the allies ride by on their Saber Mounts wishing his boss would give the go ahead to offer the Horde their own special time sink. Of course, I am willing to help the guy out but I fear with all the other things getting pushed to live by Blizz that I won't have time to spend for this. Sad, really.

Chef's Hat is now superior quality and allows the chef to cook faster

Faster? Really? Was it that slow to begin with? Sure, I'm cool with it being a blue hat now and I am happy blizz is realizing it needed to have a special ability to go with it, but I would have liked to have seen maybe a chance to proc extra food or something. We spend all that time on the daily, the least they could do is reward us with having to use less mats on our final products. Blizz obviously needs to watch the Food Network more often.

Toughness (Rank 6) provides more stamina
I snicker at this. I already have more Hit points than some of our melee dps, and while the Enhance shaman is looking forward to having more health, I can't wait to for his reaction when he sees that I am still more beefy than he is.

# The Nexus: The Oculus & The Eye of Eternity

* Vehicles (drakes) used in these instances now scale with item level.

Maybe I will finally finish the Achievements that go with these.

Non-Combat Pets: 8 new pets have been added (not including Argent Tournament rewards). Raptor Hatchlings can be found on rare and elite raptors throughout the game world. In addition, an Obsidian Raptor Hatchling can be purchased from Breanni in Dalaran.

Why do I get the feeling they are going to add the 100 pet achievement? I have over 80 at this point, and I don't even have the special TCG, Blizzcon, or Collector's Edition pets.

# Emblem System Changes

* Both the 10 and 25 player instances of the Crusaders' Coliseum drop a new Emblem of Triumph.
* Any dungeons that previously dropped Emblems of Heroism or Valor, such as Naxxramas or Heroic Halls of Stone, will now drop Emblems of Conquest instead. Emblems of Conquest can still be converted to Valor or Heroism.
* The heroic dungeon daily quest will now reward 2 Emblems of Triumph and the normal daily dungeon quest will reward 1 Emblem of Triumph.
* The existing achievements to collect 1, 25, 50, etc. Emblems of Heroism, Valor, and Conquest have been converted to Feats of Strength since Heroism and Valor Emblems are no longer attainable.
* New achievements have been added to collect various amounts of any combination of emblems.

So much of this hurts my head and confuses me. I don't understand why they continue to have us purchase items with these emblems, then reduce the ways to get the emblems, make the achievements Feats of Strength, but add a new achievement that rewards you for Collecting combos of said emblems.

OK, back to work before my head assplodes.

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