Monthly Archives: May 2009

Night Elf Bear Form pics from Europe

Here is the Night Elf bear form that got put up on WoW’s European page today.

It’s a little bit sleeker than the taruen forms, and I’m not quite sure I like the NE coloring quite as much as the tauren ones. Also, the yellow glowing eyes aren’t quite as good as the more detailed Tauren ones. It’s got the same neck/arm accessories, but a little less face paint and shoulder symbol coloring options. However, they are good in their own way, and the differences in these details are really what makes the forms uniquely different for each race. I’m also pretty sure I’ll have to lose my turquoise NE hair in favor of something that has one of the better graphics, since I’m not sure I can handle the purple/blue-ish model from the bottom-left.

Ah, I’ll take whatever they give me, and I’ll be happy, because it’s new and different, and I’ll change colors all the time even if I’m just using it as between-pull entertainment on raid nights… I like them because they’re new. I also like them because they are way better than the old NE druid forms (the bottom middle picture). Now, we just have to wait for the cat ones. I think seeing them in action will likely cause me to go into fits of squealing giggles – I bet these are awesome in action, and that screenshots just don’t capture their awesomeness. This is also likely a growling pose, and that their mouths should close.

ss2

Update: the US page got updated with the new forms now. :) Let the “but their mouths are open” posts continue! I think they should start previewing the mouth-closed graphics so that people will complain less. At least you can tell by looking at these models that they are definitely different models and NOT re-skins. You can tell from how the back is arched & their ears are smaller at the very least, even if you can’t count their toes… The US page has the higher resolution pictures that look better.

Posted in Druid - General, Feral Bear tanking

Does Furor need an update for the bears?

As much as I still have nightmares of the pre-BC furor bugs every time they tried to change the talent, I really think that Darria on the Tanking forums has a good point. The bear side of furor: “Gives you 20/40/60/80/100% chance to gain 10 Rage when you shapeshift into Bear and Dire Bear Form”.

Now that most bears are only putting 3 points into Furor (so they can afford the 2 points for Improved Mark of the Wild, that means bears are running around with a 60% chance to gain 10 rage. This is even a setup that I started to recommend for my leveling builds, although it really worried me that there is such a high % chance to NOT gain 10 rage.

In PvE, this means that bears are just shifting a couple times until it procs, which is an annoying way to deal with the mechanic, but likely one that is actually preferable to investing a full 5 points in Furor. For PvP, I’m pretty sure it’s much more likely to ruin a poor feral druid’s day…

feral-charge So, how about taking Darria’s suggestion and changing Furor to be: “100% chance to gain 2/4/6/8/10 rage when shifting into bear”? This is something I can stand behind. It stays the same talent point cost, but it isn’t random.

Feral charge – bear is 5 rage. This is most likely what you would need the rage of Furor for. With 3 points in Furor, this would give you 6 rage – just enough to charge, but not enough to do anything else. And, that’s fine with me.

Another possible solution would be to shrink the entire talent down to 3 points, and then to move down Natural/master shapeshifter, but I think that’s a little bit too dramatic of a move for the developers to do outside of a major talent overhaul (OR, they could move down Improved Barkskin to the lower part of the tree, to make it available to all druids… but this would put feral druids in a position of having MORE talents to pick up, so that may be a bad idea in the long run)…

So, it’s possible that just taking away the random element of furor for bear form’s furor would solve a lot of the problems with that talent right now.  What do you guys think?

Posted in Feral Bear tanking

3.1.3 – changes for resto pvp & moonkin T8 set bonus

There are patch notes up for the mini-patch, 3.1.3, which will not make it up on the PTR. There are several druid changes in the patch notes.

They made a couple changes for Resto PvP:

  • Improved Barkskin: This talent now also grants 80/160% additional armor while in Travel Form or not shapeshifted.
  • Improved Tree of Life: The armor bonus to Tree of Life Form from this talent has been reduced to 67/133/200% bonus armor.

The improved barkskin change gives extra armor to druids who shift out of tree form to do things like root, cyclone, etc.

The improved tree armor reduction is a pvp ‘fix’ to help quiet the sea of melee QQ on the forums. This change should have no real impact on resto PvE or any of the other specs, so this is probably the best solution for tree druid arena balancing. This means that innervate is not likely going to be a casualty of pvp balance any time soon (breathes sigh of relief).

For the Moonkin Tier 8 four-piece bonus –

  • The 4-piece bonus no longer has its effect consumed by Starfire casts in progress when it triggers. The chance for the effect to be triggered has been reduced down to 8%, as it was originally inflated to compensate.

We knew something like this was going to happen, so I’m glad that it’s making it into the game sooner rather than later…

Posted in Moonkin Balance DPS, Patch 3.1 WotLK, Restoration Healing Trees

NEW DRUID SKINS – Hell, it's about time!!!

This is NOT a joke. This is up on the Official Under Development page. Here are the Tauren bear form models. The page says they are releasing them in four installments, which means that there should soon be models posted for the NE bear form, NE cat form, and Tauren cat form “soon”.

ss1

There is no word on tree or moonkin form. It is likely that they wanted to fix the bear and cat forms first (Which sucked the most). We’re likely to see at least the bear form models go into the content patch as early as 3.2 (or in a patch later than that – I don’t want to get your hopes up too soon!). They say they should come out as an armory-type thing you can change at-will. Lets just cross our fingers and hope that everything goes according to their plans…

Here we have color customization & extra details. .  At the very least, we won’t look like level 10 hunter pets anymore… and you’ll be able to tell apart your bear & cat forms from the other bear and cat forms running around.  There’s no real armor on them, but there are some extra details (arm bands, horn wraps, et cetra) that look pretty good. I’m pretty sure that being linked to our skin/fur colors is a limitation that they couldn’t find a work-around for in a reasonable amount of time. It’s likely something that will get un-linked a few more years from now…

At this point, I think we’ll take just about anything over what we’ve been stuck with for years. WOOT Thank you Blizzard’s art team for finally caring about us druids!

Here’s more info from the druid forums:

Also, in the screenshots the bears are roaring, but when just sitting normally, their mouths will close in a toothy grin so to speak.

Here’s more (confirmation that tree and moonkin aren’t coming soon):

Tree and Moonkin forms are still something we’d like to do, but it’s something for a bit further in the future. We are aware these are things that people would like to see additional customization for.

We also would like to allow gear to affect the visual look of the forms, but this too is something that is going to need additional work in order to get it to work properly and look good.

You’ll see the further distinctions between the forms (bear and cat for tauren and night elf) as we go along in the previews.

For people who are concerned that they just paint-shop color changed:

The models have been updated and the poly count is also increased on them. So this isn’t just a simple re-skin.

There is also a reply on the tanking forums post from GC. :)

Posted in Druid - General, Feral Bear tanking

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