WOD Beta! BETA BETA BETA!! And I was lucky enough to get invited in the first wave! WOO!
I’ll have some screenshots in future posts, as I do more beta stuff, but I wanted to give some early impressions.
It’s the beta. So of course it’s full of bugs. Big bugs, little bugs. Buggy bug bugs.
(yes I’m loopy from the heat and just a little excited)
I tried logging in last Friday when it launched. Crashed every few seconds. Finally, I got in! Yay! I copied my druid over, and logged in at Shrine of Two Moons. I realized that getting to Draenor at this point in development is not very intuitive. So I headed on over to Orgrimmar hoping I’d get some kind of breadcrumb quest to tell me where to go.
I get to the portals, click on Org and….. crash. Log back in, click on Org and… loading screen! Nope, I just got punted back into the portal room at shrine. What the fail? Ok, lemme try Thunder Bluff. I can just fly on over. Same thing. The portal just spit me back out. Alrighty then. Let’s try a non-Kalimdor one. I click UC and woo! I’m in UC. Well, that wasn’t very helpful. Let me go through the portal to where the Dark Portal is! Hmm…. nothing out of the ordinary. Ok, back to Shrine and I’ll try it in the morning! I crashed about 5 times within that span as well.
Saturday morning… I log in and crash. Log back in and…crash. Log back in and… woohoo! there it is! Clicked on Org portal and…..woohoo! Made it to Org! Looking around… hmm…. no random breadcrumb quest popping up. Then I remember reading somewhere that the alliance found the way to Draenor by the Cataclysm portals in Stormwind. Alright.
I flew up to where the Org Cataclysm portals were and… what’s this?! A cute little mini dark-portal. OMG IT’S SO CUTE! It looked like something where gnomes would go to die. Naturally there were a hundred people piled on top of this mini-me version of the Dark Portal. GET OUT OF MY WAY I MUST GET TO DRAENOR! I felt like I needed some pygmy potion to fit through the door. But it was SO CUTE!
I clicked on the portal and…. nothing. Clickyclickyclicky. Nothing. LEMME IN DAMMIT! Although that would explain why there were a hundred people piled on top of the portal but nobody actually getting inside. Sigh. Ok I’ll try this again later.
I did eventually get to Draenor. And the Garrison is also bugged. More on that in the Garrison section.
So there are a few interesting UI tweaks. Enemies glow red when you mouse over them. That’s nifty. But the best UI adjustment? Tradeskill mats are stackable to 200!!!! I was running around picking flowers and… my stack didn’t stop at 20. IT KEPT GOING! I had about 20 stacks of green tea leaves in my bag, so I thought hmmm… how far does this go? 40…60…80…100….120…!!! When it got to 200 I was all “Squeeeeee!!!” Way to save bag and bank space! THANK YOU BLIZZARD! My 20 stacks were suddenly down to…2!
While we’re on the subject of bags and space. It was announced that bags will be sortable, so I tried it out. I’m not sure if this is intended or not, but specialty bags (i.e. herb bags, enchanting bags etc), are still specialty bags. I thought that blizzard might make them all generic, but so far that is not the case. My herb bag still only holds herbs. But after I set each bag to trade goods, junk, equipment, consumables, then sorted… pretty cool stuff! Now I know where everything is!
Aly is not happy. We knew they took away our instant WG and made it a castable WG. We knew that they were nerfing healing to the ground and preventing a lot of overhealing. In one of my musings on the forums, I was thinking how would our mushrooms bloom if we can’t overheal?? Well, the answer is simple. Shroom Bloom is GONE BABY GONE! Trees, once the most mobile healers in the game no longer have an instant-cast AOE heal. None. Fuck you Blizzard. We still have our instant single-target heals in Rejuv, Lifebloom and Swiftmend. But AOE? We better not be standing in fire while casting it.
And that reminds me…. right now I have been using a haste build with Soul of the Forest. Swiftmend+WG =ALL THE HEALS SO FAST! So when they made WG castable, I questioned if the talent will proc on the cast time or if it would still be on the WG ticks. I tried to test this out in the beta. Swiftmend did NOT speed up the cast time of WG. But it also didn’t appear to speed up the WG ticks either. It was hard to tell – I tried once without SM, and once with SM. But as all trees know, in order to cast SM we must cast Rejuv first. So while it *looked* like it was ticking faster, I had to take into account the Rejuv ticks that were making it look like it ticked faster. Honestly, I didn’t see a real difference. So SOTF is probably going to be a useless talent come WOD. Back to Mastery.
And this is more of a healer thing, but the stat squish is there, and I am down to 500 spirit. That’s 37k mana. That’s rough. Although it does look like the mana costs have thankfully been adjusted accordingly. So it didn’t seem like I was running out of mana too fast when practicing healing myself.
As an aside, I’ve been questing in Draenor as resto. That seems like an exercise in masochism, but things do seem to be dying very very quickly. Probably won’t be so easy when it’s live though.
That’s right! The squish is in! Squishy squish squish! Damage is squished. Healing is squished. All stats are squished. It’s a TBC type squish. My heals were ticking at 1500 instead of 15000. My damage was in the hundreds! (I’m a healer, yes my damage is going to be in the hundreds). Not only that, but XP is also squished. No more needing 10 million XP to level. It’s like we’re questing back in vanilla. each kill is 900-1300xp rested. The XP bar moves faster (again this may just be a beta thing and not a live thing). You get a few thousand XP for turning stuff in. You need like 30k XP to level. Squish!
You get a quest to build your Garrison. It seems like Blizzard really really wants us to participates in Garrisons. Once you do the intro quests in Draenor, you’re off Garrison building. It’s hard to explain, but it looks like a phased area. I picked up a plan for the barracks and plotted it. The Garrison UI is fairly idiot proof. Unfortunately I didn’t get very far here. Once I got the quest to get a follower/minion, it bugged. I got my minion, but the next quest to give him an assignment spit up a very ugly LUA error. I had zero addons enabled, and this was a bug many players were reporting.
That’s about as far as I’ve gotten in the beta. By the way there are Fel Reavers everywhere. Well, not Fel Reavers but big giant level ?? elites wandering around ready to step on your face if you get too close. Welcome back to Outlands!
Screenies will be posted later….
These past few weeks have been stressful to say the least.
There are a few things I’d like to do in the games I play. In WoW I’d like to get at least one alt the legendary cloak, now that Blizzard has given a temporary nerf to the grind. I’d also like to get all my gear full 4/4 upgrades in both healing and tank specs. My healing spec has been 2/2 upgraded with a couple pieces 4/4. Tank gear isn’t really upgraded at all. So there is stuff to do in WoW. In Wildstar, my little bunny esper is chugging along at level 21. I’d like to get her to 50 by mid-July, so I can actually do the raid attunements with the rest of my guild.
But that just doesn’t seem important right now. Not even a little bit. It’s hard enough to get game time when the little booger in my uterus keeps making me fall asleep when I get home from work. It’s hard enough that the little booger makes me crave bad food which further kills off my energy. It’s bad enough that being pregnant is stressful enough, without my family being friggin’ psycho.
My grandma is 85 years old. My grandpa just celebrated his 90th birthday. Grandpa shows no signs of stopping anytime soon. Grandma, on the other hand, is. She’s been on dialysis for 20 years (which by itself is remarkable). Her heart has decided that it can no longer handle the dialysis. She’s had a series of small heart attacks, and is never going back home. My immediate family (mother, uncle, grandpa) have not been on the same page as to what to do. They’re faced with the worst decision anyone could ever have to make. And what this decision boils down to is, let her go now or later? So they’re very stressed out. Which stresses me out. To make matters worse, they’re feuding with my cousins (grandma’s niece/nephews). And because I’m close with one of those cousins, guess who’s stuck right smack in the middle?? Yep. Moar stress! RAWR!
I didn’t sleep well last night. I literally have a pain in the neck. (I need new pillows) I got very sick this morning. Some of that can be attributed to morning sickness (but 2nd trimester just started), but that is also my basic response to overwhelming stress.
I might login to WoW or Wildstar just to de-stress. But sometimes those are stressful in their own way…
(must…get….to….50….right….naow! must….upgrade…ALL THE THINGS… must…get…full…raid…group…ARGH)
Maybe I’ll just take a nap instead.
Wildstar Online launches tomorrow! (well at least for those who pre-ordered) Guess what I’ll be doing all weekend?? Oh yeah. Thankfully my first trimester is *almost* over (2 more weeks!) and I’ve been slowly getting my energy back.
Yanni just got a new laptop so I might have him try it out as well. He tried the beta on his old machine and got lag city, cursed at the world and gave up. But if he doesn’t play, he won’t be seeing much of me this weekend… except for the back of my head.
We have decided to take MT to the Caretaker server on the Exiles side. It will be weird having the blue portrait instead of the red one. But the Exiles have bunny chicks. And who wouldn’t want to play a bunny chick?? My bunny chick will be an Esper. That’s all I played in the beta and I enjoyed it, so I may as well stick with it! I’ll also stick with farming professions to start, need to make some money somehow. So she’ll be a miner/survivalist. Roughly half my goodies will go to the GB and the other half will fund my subscription….eventually.
As for paths, in the beta I chose Settler, since it looked pretty cool. But after playing a Settler? I have come to the realization that it is the WORST possible path to take if you’re ADHD. For real. I would lose hours of leveling time because I saw something shiny on the ground. I only made it to level 16. ALL THE SHINIES!!! I had to fix ALL the broken banners, plant ALL the flowers, turn on ALL the lights…..holy waste of friggin’ time batman. But I had to stop and do it all because, well, it was shiny dammit!!!
So no Settler for me. Explorer looked a bit annoying, so I am going to try the Scientist. I’m aware Scientists still have shinies, but it can’t be as bad as the Settlers. Or I just might be better off as a Soldier. I can’t decide! That’s right, I’m an ADHD Libra. I think in the end my path choice will come down to eenie meenie miney mo.
The guild will hopefully be up and running this weekend. Depending on how soon we can get some gold together to actually start it. Tai and Myranda are beasts though. I’m sure they’ll be good for it!
I know, it’s been over a month since I’ve blogged. I’ll try not to do that again! I’ve just been so so tired.
Why, do you ask?
Because I’m harboring a tiny future gamer! And it’s making me tired, and hungry and pukey! But I’m excited, and Yanni’s excited! Right now it’s only the size of a gummy bear, but I got to see it yesterday! It. Was. Amazing. I do want to fast forward the next few weeks though. And I want to fast forward to when I can stop calling it an “it” and start saying “he” or “she”. We’ve already got names picked out. :)
So baby gamer/gummy bear has drastically reduced my online time lately. Usually when I get home from work, I log into the game. Now when I get home from work, I park my butt on the couch and nap for a few hours. Wake up for food. Then nap again. Then wake up in time to go to bed. I have a sneaking suspicion this might interfere with my ability to raid. Hopefully when the first trimester ends I’ll have more energy! At least that’s what I’ve heard.
And I’m missing out on playing in the Wildstar Beta! I want to play but… but my laptop is all the way over there. And I don’t have the energy to get up and get it. I need a setup that will allow me to be on my laptop while lying down half asleep. I can just see it now on raid night…. we’re fighting Garrosh and Joe goes splat. “Aly where were my heals??” …….”zzzzzzzzzzz, snore…..drool…….” Wake up, the raid has ended and I’m lying dead in the middle of Garrosh’s room. I blame the gummy bear!
If gummy bear is a girl, we’re going to name her Alyson. Yanni decided to try and look up what the greek version of that would be, and came up with “Aliki”. Too perfect, no??
Holy crap 2 posts in a day! Shit just got real!
After my last post about the Lull, I got to thinking about how other games have been distracting players away from WoW. It’s happened before. Aion, SWTOR, Rift. New games come out, people go play them, then they come back. This year it’s D3 Reaper of Souls and Wildstar Online.
Up until now, none of those other distractions interested me. I became mildly interested in Rift, but after hearing other players not like it, I didn’t bother. But Wildstar has me piqued, as well as several other players in MT. And rather than fight it, I’m going with it. We have enough interest in it that we have decided to expand the guild into Wildstar Online. After messing around in the beta for a couple of weekends, it’s something that I’m probably going to play when it launches in June.
So Masochistic Tendencies has officially expanded into a multi-gaming community. We’re starting with just WoW and Wildstar, but it’s not outside the realm of possibility that other games will be added. A new site is under construction that will serve as the new home page for the guild. The new home page will then provide gateways to the guild WoW site and the guild Wildstar site. Before anyone asks, I don’t plan on being the leader for the MT Wildstar guild. I just don’t think I can make that big of a commitment to 2 games simultaneously. I will however likely remain an officer in the WS guild while maintaining the GL position in WoW.
I hope that this new community will create some crossover in guild membership. We already have MT WoW players in the MT WS guild. Hopefully we’ll also get some MT WS players into our MT WoW guild.
While I’m not thrilled about the current lull in activity in WoW, the upcoming launch of WS as well as the eventual WOD expac in WoW has me excited for the future of MT.
It happens at the end of every expansion. And it happens every summer. But when the end of the expansion is during summer, and we have to wait until the Fall for a new WoW expansion, that’s just bad. And by bad I mean awful. The suck. Ugh.
Wildstar Online launches in June. The new Diablo 3 expansion just launched last week. I don’t think anyone is even playing WoW anymore? What for? What is there to do? It’s happened to us. The lull hit us hard and it hit us early. After “the split” in January, of course activity tapered off. But we bounced back from that. However recently? Activity has come to a screeching halt. The kind of screeching halt that causes the 9 car pileup behind you.
We recruited a lot of new folks after the split and started running flex to get those people geared, and to give them something to do since we can’t fit them into our one 10-man normal group yet. But it’s awfully hard to retain them if there’s nothing else going on after Tuesday nights. If it’s not a Sunday, Monday or Tuesday, I’m happy to see one or two other players on when I login. Often, I login, say “rawr!” get no reply, open the guild list and realize I just said hello to myself. It’s been deserted since Reaper of Souls launched. On my battletag list, I’ll see 9-10 players online, with the “D” symbol. I’m not sure how it’s possible, but it will get worse when Wildstar launches. It will definitely get worse once we get a Garrosh kill.
This lull is bad for business. As much as I want to, recruitment will be pretty fruitless for a while. All we can really do is just wait for it to pass, and hope we don’t lose any more members in the process.
The beta hasn’t even hit yet, so everything can change. I’ve been saying for a while that I can’t wait for WOD. It looks awesome. But I have some pretty strong reactions to the proposed healer changes.
This is all from a Resto Druid standpoint, since that’s my primary healer.
Issue #1: Nerf to instant-heals
Over time, healers have gained a bigger and bigger arsenal of heals that they can cast while on the move, which removes the inherent cost that movement is intended to have for them, while also limiting players’ ability to counter healing in PvP. This left silences and crowd control (which we’re trying to curb—see “Pruning the Garden of War”) as the only ways to actually limit an enemy player’s healing output. We’re still preserving the option to instantly heal, but are reducing the number of instant-cast healing abilities overall. Here are some examples:
- Wild Growth (Restoration) now has a 1.5-second cast time.
- Uplift (Mistweaver) now has a 1.5-second cast time.
- Eternal Flame and Word of Glory now each have a 1.5-second cast time when specced Holy.
- Light of Dawn now has a 1.5-second cast time.
- Cascade, Divine Star, and Halo now each have a 1.5-second cast time.
- Prayer of Mending now has a 1.5-second cast time.
Druids have been the most mobile healers in the game. Healing on the run is how we roll. Adding an instant cast to our WG spell pretty much kills our big insta-AOE heal. This is a HUGE change for druids that use the Soul of the Forest talent. With this talent, I SM and WG together. So the question is, does the talent activate on the cast time now, INSTEAD of the HoT ticks?! If so, this talent will be useless again.
(For the non-druids out there, SOTF: Cast swiftmend and next spell = +100% haste)
SOO in 6.0 is going to suck. Let’s pile on the Dev Aura’s on Thokk! Oh and on all the movement fights? No more heals for anyone on … all the fights! Those farm bosses just got a lot harder folks.
(I’m thinking we’re going to be done raiding when 6.0 hits, unless Blizzard re-tunes the fights to accommodate these changes – which they mentioned they would, but we’ll see)
At least we’re keeping rejuv and lifebloom instant. Now our only AOE instant is the shroom bloom. Which brings me to…..
Issue #2: Wild Mushrooms.
To that end, we’re buffing heals less than we’re increasing creature damage. Heals will be deliberately less potent compared to health pools than before the item squish. [...]
[...] Another of our goals for healing in this expansion is to strike a better balance between single-target and multi-target healing spells. We’ve taken a close look at the mana efficiency of our multi-target heals, and in many cases, we’re reducing their efficiency, usually by reducing the amount they heal. Sometimes, but more rarely, raising their mana cost was a better decision. We want players to use multi-target heals, but they should only be better than their single-target equivalents when they heal more than two players without any overhealing. This way, players will face an interesting choice between whether to use a single-target heal or a multi-target heal based on the situation.
Blizzard is nerfing throughput so healers don’t overheal. However, our mushrooms rely on overhealing! How the foo are we supposed to bloom them?? Not to mention, this renders our T16 2-pc bonus useless in early WOD dungeons.
Issue #3: Removal of Spells
Finally, we’re removing the low-throughput, low-mana-cost heals like Nourish, Holy Light, Heal, and Healing Wave, because we think that while they do add complexity, they don’t truly add depth to healing gameplay.
On the surface, this doesn’t look like a huge deal. But let me remind everyone of what Resto Druids have for Mastery. It’s a buff called Harmony, which has to be actively maintained with direct healing spells. I’ve used nourish to keep this spell up if my Swiftmend is on CD. Ok, I’ll have to use RG more (which is more mana intensive). But as it is, I still don’t manage 100% uptime (I’m in the high 90%’s usually). This needs to be passive, Blizzard. We’re the ONLY healers that have to actively maintain our friggin’ mastery. Not cool!
Some healers are going to rejoice. The ones that “love a challenge”. I’ll probably try it out as we’re leveling through dungeons. But I’m leaning a bit toward dps’ing next xpac. I’m not one of the rejoicers. These changes have me worried. Very worried.