Post 5.2: Mists of Dailies and PvP stuff
Wow, so while I was gone for a month or two moving interstate (btw, warmer climates = win) patch 5.2 hit. Not a lot of significant changes for feral druids other than the cyclone change. There was for a short time going to be a 15% (?) buff to rip, but was substituted for a fix for haste scaling which as I understand has made haste perform a bit better for feral by influencing trinket procs.
So, upon returning I found that Blizzard listened to the feedback about the insane mass of daily quests by introducing yet more daily quests on Isle of Thunder, with a veiled attempt to mix it up with an option for PvP related quests. I know, I know, I do sound a teeny bit negative, but for what it’s worth, I’m sick of dailies. After a long quest grind to 90, guess what? You get to do dailies before you can have gear! I think doing dailies in Wotlk every day to get gear when I first turned 80 has biased me against them. I got most of the Pandaria factions to revered for the gear items then left them at that. I am painfully aware that I’ll have to finish them one day… but not yet. I know people wanted gear to be difficult to get and not just handed away, but I think the cap on valor plus the exceedingly long grind for reputation together is too much. I know I am online more than I should be and even I don’t have the time or patience to spend hours grinding reputation plus capping valor and even then have to use that valor for items. It’s far easier to just do looking for raid which is enough to get gear for raids. A small consolation is being able to get some reputation on your farm – 400 I think per day for 2 factions before bonuses (880 with guild perk and account wide item after revered) and also for your first heroic of the day if you choose a champion.
That being said, Isle of Thunder isn’t so bad. Grouping up for the quests makes them very fast (as most are kill X and return to Y). On top of that there’s solo scenarios that give a nice amount of valor and let you experience the story unfolding. Then there’s rares, lizards that can bound over mountains and treasures here and there for some bonus charms. I don’t really see the point in what is it, 476 ilvl gear from Kirin Tor Offensive (or Sunreaver Onslaught for Horde), since it’s the same ilvl as the most basic LFR… But Shadow Pan Assault are my heroes, with 522 gear ready for you at Neutral. The trinket at friendly is also pretty hot.
The new raid, Throne of Thunder, isn’t too bad either. Unfortunately due to a number of guildies taking a break just before 5.2 (including myself while moving), we’ve only had 3 nights of attempts, downed the first boss and working on second, but having trouble with the third door of Horridon. Unfortunately we’re all a little undergeared (well, most of us; I’m one of the lowest) as we also had a late start on Heart of Fear because of numbers and did not get up to Terrace of Endless Spring. It also doesn’t help that LFR last week plus 3 charms did not give me any loot at all (love that system btw). I almost wish Blizzard would do something along the lines of Runescape lootshare, where the longer you don’t receive any loot, the higher your chances are the next time, until you do get something. Anyway, atm for Horidon I’m rolling with heart of the wild for the aoe and/or tranq, but outside that staying on the adds is a real pain with tanks constantly pulling them away from sand traps and whatnot.
Onto PvP… where to start… I’ve never been a serious rating chaser, preferring just to cap conquest and have fun. BGs are mostly the same, with Hunters usually dominating the HK count. I tried some 3s and 2s arenas with friends (w/w Monk and Resto shaman and then just with rShaman) and found the experience extremely painful. 3s groups were dominated by ranged, predominantly Warlock, Mage, Hunter and SPriest and had insane burst. 2s had a lot of rogues some of which weren’t too crash hot, others were very hard to control. In 3s even at low rating our healer got bursted into oblivion a few seconds into the match and there was nothing we could do to peel for him. 2s was very similar, but the biggest encumbrance is the cooldown on Cyclone (20 seconds). With a 6 second duration, it’s just not long enough to get any decent burst in on the non-CC’d target and after you use it you have absolutely nothing. Healing Touch is near useless to help my healer out, and what good is Entangling Roots against ranged or healers? If feral burst were on par with say, Hunters, 6 seconds of cyclone would probably be enough. 20 seconds isn’t that much granted, but it makes everything clunky. I don’t really understand why Warlocks can keep a target feared/horrified etc for a stupid amount of time before DR sets in (while being able to damage their fear target) but Feral cyclone was deemed a problem. What it’s like in higher ratings I have no idea, but I can’t see many bringing a Feral Druid than the alternatives. I really don’t like the “burst straight off the bat” style of arena, but that’s all low ranked arenas seem to be. Two guild mates who have been pvp’ing with monks from the start of the xpac have both given them up (yes even after the 5.2 buffs) in preference for mages and hunters because that’s the only way to win. The rated BGs we did were much more fun, even though Feral isn’t the first choice for that either, but this was again, a guild group for fun and points.
It’s hard to think of anything that isn’t negative, though I guess complaints are something easy to write about! Otherwise this patch is looking good excepting class balance.