Monthly Archives: May 2009

Please don't re-nerf innervate.

There has been many tears spilled on the WoW forums regarding druids in Arena PvP. Some think they are too hard to kill. Others have decided that innervate is the root of all evil, and have started crusades against my beloved mana regen spell.

Most of what gets posted in “nerf innervate” threads is a LOT of missinformation, general bad forum flavor, and mostly just frustrate me to no end.

While resto druids may be powerful for PvP, it’s not innervate (alone) that makes them powerful. Nerfing the amount of mana returned by innervate would have these consequences:

  1. Make moonkin even worse for PvP
  2. Make hard-mode Ulduar content even harder (as all the druid specs that are able to use innervate on the casters would have less powerful tools)
  3. Generally make resto druids and moonkin have worse PvE raiding mana problems in instances past Ulduar – where our mana pools get bigger and innervate doesn’t get more powerful.
  4. Most importantly –  it would not have any effect on resto arena 2v2 representation that people are QQ’ing about

Something like reducing some of the armor buff from tree form, or changing/removing improved barkskin would have an effect on resto druid PvP, and would have little-to-no effect on the PvE druids, OR moonkin PvE.

We know that balance druids need survivability more than resto druids, so it would be easy to move some version of improved barkskin to the balance tree & remove it from the resto tree. This would force resto arena druids to have to use Line of Sight to help prevent dispells on innervate & other abilities, which should be possible in a lot of the arena settings.

Please don’t nerf PvE resto druids because of PvP. Please don’t nerf moonkin PvP because of resto PvP.

Oh, and have a happy Memorial day!

Posted in Druid - General, Player Versus Player

New UI: The same but different…

Okay, so I started with the easy part – fixing my action bars. I had 4 action bars I was using, which were taking up a lot of space on my screen. I only used maybe half the buttons during any raid, and a lot of the things I needed access to (ie. potions, combat res, all my “oh crap” buttons) were far away from my main heal spells on the screen. Given that I don’t keybind everything, this was very problematic.

So, the first thing I did (on Lavata’s recomendation) was downloading Domino’s bar mod. After much grumbling, kicking and whining, we managed to get something that worked out pretty well. The second thing I did was to turn off the advanced tooltip features in the base Blizzard UI (oops) so that all the tooltip information wasn’t covering the bottom half of my raid frames if I dropped them lower on my screen.

The advantages of Dominos bar mod for my spell bars (instead of Blizzard bars):

  • All my active bars change when I switch to my second spec
  • Allowed me to shrink and break up my bars in a way where I have space for everything essential, everything else (chat boxes, etc) can get lowered on my screen, giving more space to see what’s going on around me.
  • Easy key binding settings for spells.
  • If I shift to my feral forms, my feral abilities are still accessible.
  • It feels as much like the Blizzard UI as you want it to, in terms of how using my spells works. It just takes up less space if customized right (even if it’s a pain in the neck to get set up).

Raid frames Finding raid frames that did what I wanted them to do. I’ve tried setting up over the last 24 hours (in order):

  1. Grid: Was too cumbersome and hard to set up. Too far different from what I was used to using. Ran into the problem of not finding an option to show total health %, rather than deficits. Got frustrated and gave up.
  2. Healbot: Was recommended by one of the druid healers in my raid. I ran into problems with displaying the HOTs. Either they covered the entire bar to the point where I couldn’t see if people’s health was going down, or the raid frames took up too much space. In addition, all the click casting features were probably going to be wasted, since I tend to not use click-casting heals.
  3. Went back to X-perl: I re-installed all the Xperl addons, because I was missing features from it like the buff displays under my personal nameplate and such that I got used to having. I turned off mana/energy/rage displays, which shunk down the size of the raid frames. However, since I couldn’t find a setting that would show only buffs/HOTs I cast on people, I decided it would be too hard to stick with it. I turned off the raid frame portion of Xperl, but kept the other features (for now). So, my overall feel of my UI is similar to what it was before.
  4. Found sRaidFrames. Did a happy tree dance. Kept sRaidFrames.

What sRaidFrames does. While the overall feel and style isn’t that much different than what I’ve always used, it has a couple important features I was looking for.

  • Shows only what I cast on people (I tried it out in a sucky Naxx pug that didn’t kill more than trash). Allows me to set anything I don’t want showing up on a “don’t show” list. So, food buffs show up on the frames, but I can set it to NOT show “Well Fed” and then it doesn’t take up space on my raid frame.
  • Allows me to show total % health remaining (instead of deficits).
  • Fairly compact, easy to set up, use, and doesn’t leave me with a drastically steep learning curve for how to use them.

HotCandy. The one thing sRaidFrames doesn’t do is show me how long my HOT will remain on the target. For MT healing, it’s really handy to be able to have a timer that keeps track of that sort of thing. HotCandy, however, lists all the HOTs I cast on anyone, so if I cast rejuv on 20 people, it would show a list of 20 names and timers all in a row. You can, however, disable any of the spells you don’t want showing up there (so I could turn off everything besides lifeblooms if I wanted to just keep track of lifeblooms on a tank or something).

My guess is that the Hot Candy timer will likely be the thing that gets chopped out of my UI, likely in favor of Lifebloomer or something similar that keeps track of things on individuals, rather than the entire raid.

I took some pictures during my Naxx “test” run today. This is what my set up for Sunday’s Ulduar raid is likely going to look like. Not really that different, but I may need to make changes gradually rather than huge changes all at once.

new_ui_2

Posted in Uncategorized

Thorns nerfed – moonkin further crippled by a resto "fix"

So, after spending all last night and today working on my UI project, I seem to have missed a hotfix that went into the game recently:

The bonus damage from spell power on the Druid ability Thorns has been reduced by half.

This spell power change also effects paladins’ retribution aura. Well crud. I’d go into a long post about how moonkin PvP already sucks, but I JUST finished doing that. Somehow, no one really thought about how changing thorns was going to hurt the few moonkin who were actually desired for any sort of Arena team. That’s the only real reason why I’m being so dramatic-sounding with this post.

Just because restoration druids are powerful, that doesn’t mean moonkin need to be hurt AGAIN by changes designed to balance our resto counterparts. It’s not like moonkin were living long enough for that extra damage to make a huge difference, however for the moonkin who were surviving, the reflective damage was probably about the only damage moonkin are actually doing in PVP half the time. Moonkin don’t even have access to the dispel protection given to resto druids through improved barkskin.

If Blizzard wants to balance resto druids for PvP, then they need to give improved barkskin (in some version) to moonkin druids instead of resto druids. Or, put improved barkskin where brambles is, and move brambles further up the balance tree to put it out of reach of resto druids.

Simply nerfing the only real anti-melee ability anyone had doesn’t really seem like it’s going to fix anything.

Posted in Moonkin Balance DPS, Player Versus Player

My UI sucks (the before pictures)

Okay, so I got a new fan for my laptop so it would stop overheating (I burnt out two video cards in two years due to the amount of heat my laptop generates). That meant I would need to stop using my laptop’s keyboard, since now it’s too high up and so I got a keyboard & started using my keyboard tray for doing more than just holding papers & schoolwork.

However, switching to a new keyboard & a new sitting position meant I needed to move around where all my spells were, so that I could reach them better, et cetra. While running Ulduar with my new setup, I just realized that my UI isn’t working for Ulduar anymore. It’s too hard for me to see all the things I need to be situationally aware of, too hard for me to use my “oh crap” buttons, and I’m trying to rotate through more spells than I have fingers to mash the keys with my left hand while I run around and meneuver with my mouse.

Here’s my real problem. This is what my UI looked like in Molten Core, where I could literally turn towards a wall and watch health bars, with 2 or 3 actual healing spells I used at any point in time:

mc_ui

I only had 3 spells I really had to cast very often: regrowth, healing touch, and rejuvination.

I spent so many years healing with this UI set up, that my current set up in Ulduar looks nearly identical:ulduar_ui

The only real difference is a couple things:

  1. They put in the feature to disable seeing your group on the left side of the screen when you were in a raid
  2. There are fewer people in the raid.
  3. I got more buttons, and ended up with a bar on the left side of my screen
  4. I got a wide-screen monitor laptop, instead of my desktop with regular-dimension screen.
  5. I’m using Xperl instead of ctraid frames.

NOTHING else about my UI is different. I’ve been healing the same exact way for so long that I don’t even know if it’s possible for me to change to a new UI. I HAVE tried to change on mulitple occassions, but this is always what I come back to at the end of the day. I pretty much kick and scream any time even the font on the UI bars change. I picked Xperl, since their bars looked the most like the CTraid frames I used Pre-BC.

It’s a mess and it’s time for me to learn how to heal again with a better UI so I can keep up with the Ulduar content. That said, it’s not like I’m doing poorly now. I’m staying competitive with my current UI set up. I heal well with it, because I’ve been doing the exact same thing for years without any real problems. I HAVE tried other mods in the past (you name the bar mod or healing mod, and I’ve used it). I’ve gotten good at using the number keys for the majority of my spells, instead of totally being a clicker all the time (though I don’t have all my spells bound to keys). I’m using some hodge-podge of clicking and button pressing that has served me well for a long time. However, it needs a new, fresh, Ulduar-ready feel.

Over the weekend (ie. before Sunday’s Raid) I am going to get a whole NEW UI (a whole new set of mods) and practice using my new healing setup in Battlegrounds (AV or Basin probably), before Sunday’s raid. I’ll post back on this topic early next week and let you guys know what I ended up with…

Posted in Druid - General

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