Category Archives: PVP

WoW Drinking Games

Looking to spice up your time in WoW a little bit? Why not play a drinking game! I’ve been thinking about all the healer-related derp moments that happen in raids and came up with a lot of things that should drive a healer to drink. I had help coming up with some of these rules, so thanks to Kaleri, Tikari, JoeEgo and especially Walks, who also came up with the idea in the first place.

Healer Rules

Take a drink any time one of the following things happen in a raid or dungeon:

Druid

  • You see your Efflorescence pop up in the middle of nowhere because some ranged dps is standing off by themselves.
  • Your Lifebloom expires and does 100% overheal (tree form not included).
  • You accidentally Innervate a tank or dps.
  • You let Harmony fall off.
  • You shift out of Tree of Life before it’s finished.
  • You die because you are distracted by having to Battle Rez someone.

Paladin

  • Your Lay on Hands is all overheal.
  • You try to cast Lay on Hands or Hand of Protection but you can’t because your target already has Forbearance.
  • You cast Light of Dawn while facing the wrong direction.
  • You die because of Hand of Sacrifice.
  • Any time you come up against a fight where Resistance Aura plus Aura Mastery is useless.
  • You use Divine Plea right when the healing gets intense.

Priest

  • Your Lightwell comes off cooldown and there are still charges left in your last one.
  • Your Prayer of Mending bounces to a pet. If it bounces to a Bloodworm, drink twice.
  • You overwrite another priest’s Prayer of Mending or they overwrite yours.
  • You can’t bubble the tank because another priest has given them Weakened Soul.
  • Your Shadowfiend refuses to attack anything.

Shaman

  • You cast Chain Heal and it doesn’t bounce.
  • You overwrite another shaman’s Earth Shield, or someone overwrites yours.
  • You drop your Spirit Link Totem out of range of the majority of the raid.
  • You drop a Healing Rain and the whole raid moves.
  • You Ankh, only to die again immediately to raid damage.

Multi-class

  • You fat-finger one of your cooldowns.
  • You have to move and interrupt your Tranquility, Divine Hymn or Hymn of Hope channel.
  • You go a whole fight without using your cooldowns.
  • You get aggro on all the adds in a fight and die horribly or need a Pally’s HoP to save you.
  • All of your Intellect/Haste procs go off when there’s nothing to heal.

Of course, I don’t want the non-healers to feel left out, so here are some rules for the rest of the raid.

Rules for Tanks and DPS

Drink whenever one of the following happens:

  • A Paladin bemoans the removal of Divine Intervention.
  • A Priest tells you to click the lightwell.
  • A healer tells you to stand in the ground heals.
  • A healer tells you to use your healthstone.
  • You die with your healthstone still in your inventory.
  • You die because you stood in the bad.
  • You die because you were standing just outside of the PW: Barrier.
  • You have to be Lifegripped out of the bad, or into a stack point.
  • You get out-damaged by an Atonement priest. First drink, then cry.

I also can’t forget the people who like to PVP. I’m sure it makes many people want to drink away their frustrations.

PVP Rules

Drink whenever one of the following happens:

  • A healer steals a killing blow from you.
  • You realize mid-match that you are not in your pvp gear or spec.
  • Your main class of spells gets locked out by an interrupt.
  • A healer successfully jukes your interrupt.
  • You and another member of your team CC the same person at the same time.
  • You CC the kill target. If you cyclone the kill target, drink twice.
  • You get Mind-Controlled, Typhooned or Thundershocked off a ledge.
  • Someone drops a flag because they tried to mount or stealth.

If you play by any of these sets of rules, I’m sure your whole raid or PVP team will be thoroughly intoxicated within a few minutes.

Can you think of any good rules to add?

Thursday Tidings

The last week or two in WoW have been fairly eventful for me, even with so many people distracted by Diablo 3. I haven’t put a ton of time into WoW, but I feel like the time I have spent has been productive and rewarding.

Podcast

Team WaffleFirst of all, I was on the Team Waffle Podcast on Friday night. We talked about the latest changes to Druids in the beta, the new talent trees and how I feel about Heroic resto raiding in Cataclysm. The podcast is now available on the Team Waffle site, or on iTunes. (I’ve also added a new page to my blog under About, with links to all the podcasts I’ve done – Jasyla Speaks.)

Raiding

Glory of the Dragon Soul Raider

After killing Heroic Madness of Deathwing 2 weeks ago, Apotheosis spent the last 2 weeks doing all the meta achievements for Glory of the Dragon Soul Raider. Now all of our raiders have shiny new Twilight Harbingers (though some of our Initiates still have an achievement or two left to get). Getting the meta achievements was a lot of fun. My favourite part was doing the red-green ooze combination on Heroic Yor’sahj – I could practically feel all the healers holding their breath as the oozes hit and our ranged dps started taking 150k Searing Blood hits. We lost a few people, but got through it without too much problem. The worst achievement, without a doubt, was Holding Hands on Hagara. We attempted this a number of times on 25 and it is just so, so buggy. Kurn meticulously placed every raider around the room so the lightning would chain properly, everyone stood where they were supposed to, and then the lightning just wouldn’t chain. It would hop from person to person and then at some point, it would just stop and refuse to hop again. We ended up doing the achievement on 10-man mode which was much easier, but it was annoying that we had to do that.

Next week we’re back to clearing heroics to get everyone all the gear they want and get as many Lifebinder’s Handmaiden and Blazing Drake mounts as we can. I really, really want a mount that looks like Alezstrasza. :)

Apotheosis is still recruiting, so if you are an excellent player (especially a warlock or a shadow priest) and would like to come clear Dragon Soul with us and have a great place to raid in Mists, come apply.

Twilight Harbinger

PVP

I’ve been doing a lot of PVP over the last few weeks. I’ve been doing the arena pass with a Rogue and shadow Priest. We were mostly doing it for the pet and title and last night we finished our 100th game. We ended the tournament with a rating of 1640 which puts us in the top 500 on the arena ladder. I’m happy with that, though 3s always make me feel a little underpowered as a Druid. Looking through the comps of all the teams in the tournament is very telling. Out of the top 2000 teams, the healer class breakdowns look like this:

  • 511 teams have a Priest healer
  • 456 teams have a Shaman healer
  • 341 teams have a Pally healer
  • 100 teams have a Druid healer

What makes it even worse is that 80% of the teams with a Resto Druid have a rating of less than 1500 (while only about 60% of the teams with any other healer are below 1500). The only thing that makes me feel good about being a Druid in the tournament is that my mana bar seems to go on forever while the other healers go oom much more quickly – 95% of the time I give my Innervate to the shadow Priest. But other than that, I feel like being a Druid is a bit of a handicap. Here’s hoping that resto PVP is in a much better place in Mists.

In other PVP news, last night I reached 1800 rating in RBGs. I’m really excited about this one. Knight-Captain Jasyla has a nice ring to it. Now I just need 24 more wins to get my Spiky Pony – I love that mount.

Knight-Captain Jasyla

More Achievements!

Lastly, after months (or years) of spending time roaming around Northrend looking for rare spawns, I finally found Vyragosa and King Krush to give me the Frostbitten achievement.

Frostbitten

Now I don’t know what I’ll do with myself when I’m waiting on arena/BG queues. Maybe fish for a sea turtle?

All the achievements from the last few weeks have put me up to 13380. I’m hoping I can get up to 13500 at least before Mists.

What have you been up to?

Druid Talents – Mists of Pandaria Preview

I never wrote down my thoughts on the Druid talent tree preview when it was first announced at BlizzCon last year. It was clear then that it was very preliminary and needed a lot of work. Yesterday the talent trees were updated so I thought it was a good time to analyse the new talents and see how resto Druids are shaping for the next expansion.

The Talent Tree

Mists of Pandaria Druid talent tree

Tier 1 (level 15)

Level 15 Druid talents (MoP)

Feline Swiftness – Increases your movement speed by 15%.

This one is very self-explanatory. Faster movement speed is always a good thing.

Displacer Beast – Teleports the Druid up to 20 yards forward and activates Cat Form and Prowl. 3 minute cooldown.

The 20 yard ‘blink’ sounds like it could have its uses, but I’m not sold on it activating Cat form. It seems like in a PVE scenario that would be counterproductive. The Prowl part raises some questions – will it still be activated if you are in combat? Will Displacer Beast remove you from combat? What if you have DoTs or bleeds on you? This could be a pretty sweet PVP talent if it removes you from combat and Prowl isn’t broken by existing DoTs, or it could be fairly useless. A better description is needed.

Wild Charge – Grants a movement ability that varies by shapeshift form. 15 second cooldown.

Non shapeshifted – Fly to an ally’s position.
Bear form – Charge to an enemy, immobilizing them for 4 seconds.
Cat form – Leap behind an enemy, dazing them for 3 seconds.
Travel form – Leap forward 20 yards.
Aquatic form – Increases swim speed by 200% for 5 seconds.

There’s a lot to consider here. I’m a little puzzled about this talent, especially when comparing it to Displacer Beast. Displacer Beast teleports you 20 yards, activates cat form and has a 3 minute cooldown. If you’re looking to be able to get around quickly, that seems extremely inferior to Wild Charge, where you can fly to an ally’s position or can shift to travel form and leap forward 20 yards every 15 seconds. For PVP this talent is great in that it allows restos to have Feral Charge, something we haven’t been able to include in our specs since Burning Crusade (though it doesn’t seem like it will include an interrupt). That, plus the ability to jump around either in caster or travel form would give us some great mobility.

What would I take?

PVE
Feline Swiftness
is the safe, kinda boring option. It will come in handy on pretty much any fight that involves movement. Wild Charge is a bit of a wild card (haha), but the caster form and travel form leaps could be great on fights where you need to get to a certain place quickly (think getting away from Molten Seeds on Rag or stacking on a crystal on Morchok). I see myself bouncing between these two talents based on the fight.

PVP
I think Wild Charge is the winner here. It will give us more utility and make us harder to catch.

Tier 2 (Level 30)

Druid level 30 talents (MoP)

Nature’s Swiftness – When activated your next Cyclone, Entangling Roots, Healing Touch, Hibernate, Nourish, Rebirth or Regrowth becomes instant, free, and castable in all forms. The healing and duration of the spell is increased by 50%. 1 minute cooldown.

This is a huge improvement over the current Nature’s Swiftness. I love that they’ve added ‘free’ in addition to instant, and a 1-minute cooldown is much more reasonable than 3 minutes. I have to say that the idea of an instant, 9-second duration Cyclone in arena (assuring the target has burned their trinket already) fills me with girlish delight. Having NS-HT be castable in all forms could also be very useful. This talent does leave me with a couple of questions. Will using it with Regrowth double the amount of the heal and the duration of the HoT? Will Rebirth be improved at all? (don’t really see how it could be).

Renewal – Instantly heals the Druid for 30% of maximum health. Usable in all shapeshift forms. 2 minute cooldown.

This could definitely come in handy in both PVE and PVP, though it’s not the most exciting talent in the world. I personally see this as a better option for non-restos.

Cenarion Ward – Protects a friendly target, causing any damage taken to heal for 4,015 every 2 seconds for 6 seconds. Gaining the healing effect consumes the Cenarion Ward. Lasts 30 seconds. 30 second cooldown.

I think this could be a great option for tank healing druids. It adds another spell to our arsenal and you’d be sure that it would always be activated. I don’t put too much stock in the 4015 number, as long as this healed for a significant amount it could be a good talent.

What would I take?

PVE
I really like that Nature’s Swiftness is now only a 1-minute cooldown and that would probably make me more likely to use it. However, I also like Cenarion Ward. It’s hard to turn down a brand new healing spell. I would likely switch between the two depending on fight and assignment.

PVP
A 9-second cyclone? Being able to pop a Healing Touch on yourself while you’re dashing away in Cat form after some jerk priest has mana-burned the hell out of you? Nature’s Swiftness seems like the clear winner for PVP.

Tier 3 (Level 45)

Level 45 druid talents (MoP)

Faerie Swarm – Grants an improved version of Faerie Fire that also reduces the target’s movement speed by 50% for 15 seconds.

I see very little use for this talent for a PVE resto Druid. Maybe on something like Sons of Ragnaros, but from experience, there aren’t a whole lot of fights where healers need to be slowing a single target. In PVP it could be much more useful.

Mass Entaglement – Roots your target in place for 20 seconds and spreads to additional nearby enemies. Affects 5 total targets. Damage caused may interrupt the effect. Usable in all shapeshift forms. 2 minute cooldown.

Again, I don’t see much use for this in PVE. It could have some rare situational uses, but the fact that it can break on damage makes it less useful. In PVP, especially BGs it could be useful, but the cooldown is rather long.

Typhoon – Summons a violent Typhoon that strikes targets in front of the caster within 30 yards, knocking them back and dazing them for 6 seconds. Usable in all shapeshift forms. 20 second cooldown.

Stealing the Moonkin talent, this one is fairly straightforward.

What would I take?

PVE
Each talent would have its own situational uses, but from experience a mass knock back (which will also interrupt) and daze is more useful than a single-target slow or a mass root with a really long cooldown. I think Typhoon would be the talent to take in 90% of PVE situations.

PVP
Again, I think Typhoon is the best of this bunch. It gives us a knock back, an interrupt and a daze on a short cooldown.

Tier 4 (Level 60)

Level 60 druid talents (MoP)

Soul of the Forest – You gain 50% haste for your next spell when you cast Swiftmend.

An important thing to note about this spell is that it is 50% haste, not casting speed, so it should apply to HoTs, giving them extra ticks. One hasted spell every 15 seconds (assuming you use SM every time it’s off cooldown) doesn’t strike me as that good. Decent, yes, an output boost, sure, but for some reason I can’t get too excited about this talent.

Incarnation – Tree of Life form that increases healing done by 15%, increases armor by 120% and enhances Lifebloom, Wild Growth, Regrowth, Entangling Roots and Wrath spells. Lasts 30 seconds. 3 minute cooldown.

This is just our current Tree of Life talent with a new name. At a 30 second duration, we’re losing 1 second from what it is  currently (when talented).

Force of Nature – Summons three Treants to assist in the Druid’s current combat role. 3 minute cooldown.

It doesn’t specify what the treants will do for each spec, but it’s a pretty safe bet that resto treants will heal things. Of course, pets like treants have a tendency to be… um… hmm… how do I put this delicately? They have a tendency to be fucking stupid, so I’m not sold on the usefulness of this talent.

What would I take?

PVE
I really can’t see giving up a great healing output cooldown, so I’d go with Incarnation.

PVP
Again, ToL’s increased armor, healing and instant Regrowths would be sorely missed, so I’d go with Incarnation here too.

Tier 5 (Level 75)

Level 75 Druid talents (MoP)

Disorienting Roar – Invokes the spirit of Ursol to roar, disorienting all enemies within 10 yards for 4 seconds. Usable in all shapeshift forms. 30 second cooldown.

I can’t see too many uses for this in PVE, though it could be useful for fights with adds when you find all your HoT aggro is making the adds make a beeline for you. It could be great for PVP.

Ursol’s Vortex – Conjures a vortex of wind at the destination location that pulls all enemies within 15 yards toward it. Usable in all shapeshift forms. Lasts 15 seconds. 30 second cooldown.

I’m not convinced about the usability of this spell. First, ‘destination location’ means targeting circle. I hate those. Second, 15 yards isn’t that far. If you’re using the spell to get things away from you (or a flag), you’ll need to be a really good judge of distance to make this effective. The best use I can see for this spell is to aid your tanks and DPS by bringing a pack of mobs/players together to be AoE’d.

Mighty Bash – Invokes the spirit of Ursoc to stun the target for 5 seconds. Usable in all shapeshift forms. 50 second cooldown.

Situational, but on some fights it will be really nice to be able to stun things without switching to bear form. For PVP this will give a much-needed extra crowd control/interrupt ability.

What would I take?

PVE
Ehh… I don’t think any of these talents will be useful all the time. They’re all situational at best and really only useful on fights with adds. I think I’d be switching the talent I chose in this tier (or ignoring it altogether) based on the fight.

PVP
I think the best option for PVP depends on what you’re doing. 2s arenas? Mighty Bash. BGs or arenas with 3 or more people? Probably Disorienting Roar. If I was doing a flag/node capture battleground and feeling really pro, I’d try out Ursol’s Vortex.

Tier 6 (Level 90)

Level 90 Druid talents (MoP)

Heart of the Wild – Grants 50% of Intellect as Agility and 100% of Spirit as hit rating and expertise rating and increases armor by 95% while in Bear Form. In addition, damage spells cost no mana. Lasts 45 seconds. 6 minute cooldown.

I really think they’ve missed the mark here. As many, many other druids have emphatically stated, we don’t want to serve combat roles outside our specialization. We’re healers. We heal things. I’m trying to think of situational uses for this skill. What if the tank has died and the boss needs to be picked up at 5% health? Well, I don’t think 95% more armor in Bear form would let us do that (tree form gives us 120% more armor), and I think so many other classes would be better suited for that. Maybe when there’s a phase of a fight where no damage is going out and all there is to do is dps? Then I guess it could be useful, but really, how often does that happen? Also, I’d probably take advantage of the free damage spells before I switched to kitty and started scratching things.

Dream of Cenarius – Wrath, Starfire, Starsurge and melee abilities increase healing done by your next healing spell by 30%. Non-instant casts of Nourish, Healing Touch and Regrowth increase the damage done by your next damaging spell or ability by 30%. Lasts 30 seconds, 30 second ICD.

First, I’m going to assume that when it says ‘melee abilities’ it means actual abilities (Swipe, Rake, Maul) and not just running up and hitting something with your staff. Again, I think this is situational. If you need a bigger heal, you could cast a quick Wrath first…but you could also just cast 2 healing spells instead of 1 in that time. I do think this will be more useful for PVP, but in PVE I can’t see myself casting a damage spell in order to do more healing. And really, how much is a 30% bigger heal/damage spell every 30 seconds worth? Especially when you need to spend 1.5-2.5 seconds casting the opposite first? I’m not impressed.

Disentanglement – Shapeshifting now removes roots. In addition, shifting into a form heals the Druid for 20% of maximum health. Cannot heal more than once every 30 seconds.

The usefulness of this in PVE is questionable. Removing roots isn’t something you usually have to worry about and shapeshifting isn’t something we do too often. If we need a heal, we can heal ourselves, we don’t need to shift to get the benefit from this. For PVP this is really good. I wouldn’t want to lose the ability to break roots by shifting and the addition of the heal is a nice bonus.

What would I take?

PVE
Honestly? Bleh. I’m not a fan of any of our top tier talents. I can’t really say which one I’d be most likely to want to use in their current form. They still need work.

PVP
Disentaglement, hands down.

In conclusion

I think progress has been made on the Druid talents. I’m quite excited to play around with talents like Wild Charge, Cenarion Ward and Ursol’s Vortex. I like that some tiers give us a real choice and allow us to tailor our spec to what a particular fight needs. I also really like the idea of extra utility from talents like Typhoon and Mighty Bash. However, I still feel like this talent tree is being spread too thin trying to cater to 4 completely different specializations. I would like more choices that are new and exciting for restos. Tier 5 and 6 have very limited use in raids and still need a lot of work. In their current state, nothing jumps out at me as something I really want for PVE. Our last talent point should be something exciting.