So, they announced more details about their plan for Cataclysm gear, which has set off a posting frenzy across the WOW community.
Most of it was stuff we already knew. The summary is that they expect bear & cats to share gear, while they expect resto & moonkin to share gear. This sounds great in theory, but is likely going to cause problems in the long run, and it’s going to take months of Beta testing everything to get all the “nobs” tweaked right to pull this off.
However, please keep in mind that we have multiple months to get everything working right, and that there will be some variety & customization for our gear, and that the sky is definitely not falling (well, except for moonkin who can make stars fall out of the sky on demand).
Overall, they seem to be simplifying gear to a great extent. First, please realize that this is only a plan, and that some things will change between this post & Cataclysm being released. Here’s a rough summary and analysis, rather than a copy/paste of that thread. If you want to see what exactly they said, then go read the original thread. Below combines some of the knowledge from earlier posting, along with what was released today. In all cases, the existing stats on gear are going to change. However, you should wait until we know what individual pieces will look like before you start stocking up on additional gear. There will be several months to get things all straightened out before things go live. Cata is still a long time away.
For cats & bears, stats on leather armor will include:
- Cat & bear gear will have roughly the same amount of stamina, which will be high like the other classes (so bear won’t need as much additional scaling for stam).
- Leather gear for cats/bears will likely have a mix of: stam, agility, crit, haste, mastery, hit, & expertise.
- Bears may need to gear for STR accessories for more tanking-related stats shared with other tanking classes (though bears still can’t block/parry), but this point still isn’t entirely clear. Dodge rating would probably only be on the STR items.
- Resilience will still be good for PvP.
- Haste will be a more attractive state for melee specs.
- Reforging will help with getting your bear & cat sets to have the right combination of stats. However, reforging won’t be perfect (IE. you won’t be able to convert all of that yucky parry/block into dodge at a 1 to 1 conversion rate).
For Resto & Moonkin
- We’re expected to gear basically the same between resto & moonkin (they said that before WotLK; we’ll see how well that actually works out).
- Leather caster gear will have a mix of: Int, stam, spirit, haste, crit, & mastery.
- Resto druids will be happy, and not much is changing for them in terms of gear stats, and everything is happy in tree-land.
- Moonkin (and elemental shaman) won’t have hit rating itemized on their leather/mail. Instead, we’ll have talents that convert spirit to hit rating. We can still use DPS caster accessories with or without hit on them as needed.
- It is likely that there will be some leather caster gear without spirit on it (I really hope so). If moonkin ends up with too much spirit (ie. hit rating) from gear, we can either complain to get more non-spirit items, or we can suck it up and reforge (and take the 50% stat penalty) to convert spirit to another more useful stat. However, until we see what happens to the gear, we just have to trust that in most cases, gear will be itemized in a way that makes sense. Also, if other casters end up with too much +hit rating gear, they will have to do the same thing, so it should balance out in the end.
- My bet is that we’ll end up needing to reforge a couple pieces of gear to get a decent set, but I’m hoping that reforging works out right in the end.
- We lose mastery if we pick up cloth instead of leather.
- Spell penetration & resilience will be available for PvP gear.
- It should be harder for moonkin to reach the hit/haste/crit caps in Cataclysm compared to now.
More About Reforging (ie. what people should be concerned about right now):
Reforging is really what all of druids dreams for the future are tied up in. Bears will need reforging to turn Warrior tanking items into druid tanking items, or to turn rogue leather into tanking leather. Moonkin still won’t have gear perfectly itemized for them, and will need reforging to turn healing gear into moonkin gear (especially for balancing around the spirit/hit cap). For bear druids, there needs to be some way to turn STR accessories into better things for bears without losing itemization points along the way, since bears are likely going to be expected to use them (ie. parry & block rating need 1 to 1 conversions to dodge for bears, or bears will be more limited in the gear they can tank in).
This isn’t really anything super new or shocking. We have had huge changes to our stats every expansion, and we have survived every time in the past. Cataclysm will bring new and exiting changes, and nothing marked for Cataclysm is set in stone yet. They could make it through part of testing and realize something just isn’t working right, and completely change it to something different. That’s just part of the game, and we’ll adapt just like we always do.