Posts Tagged ‘Patch’


If 3.2 doesn’t drop tonight, I will eat one of my fedoras. That’s how confident I am.

3.2 brings huge, sweeping changes to the mage cla-

Oh wait no it doesn’t.

The mage class still possesses an exhaustive laundry list of issues, and patch 3.2 somehow managed to ignore every last one of them.

Fire mage PvP? Absolutely nothing to see here.

Frost PvE? What are you, drunk?

Fixes to mana issues? Arcane this, that, and the other thing?

You be crazy, mon. This patch was all about Death Knights, Paladins, and Shamans.

But meh. Patch 3.2 is about to smack you upside the head, and there ARE mage changes that you need to be aware of. (more…)

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Patch 3.1 is Upon Us

Hope you had a wonderful weekend filled with stuff and things.

Welcome back to the digital world, and I hope you brought popcorn, ’cause 3.1 is officially here.


Have you seen the trailer?

So basically this is totally awesome.

Poor Ronin is such a nerd. Poor guy is surrounded by bloodthirsty jocks (Garrosh and Varian) and all he can do is yell “we have to work together!” and make shiny colors.

Dude, L2sheep. Nothing will put a savage orc or vengeful king in his place quicker than transforming into a disgustingly cute turtle for a a little while.

So it seems no one is getting along with anyone else. Naturally, the Horde and the Alliance continue to be utterly incapable of partnering up against anything, even if the imminent threat couldn’t be killed by the race that created the freaking dragons.

Have I mentioned before how deeply I am enjoying the way the lore is going this expansion? (more…)

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Patch 3.1, so far, is trying very hard to restore the age of raiding where warlocks were superior to mages in every regard.

Let’s start broad. Blizzard adopted the philosophy of BTPNTC (bring the player, not the class) and spread around utility abilities to various classes. This way, a raid wouldn’t have to have a shadow priest for mana regen, they could bring a hunter or paladin (and now a mage or warlock) to get the same effect.

A truly excellent idea, that deserved far better execution than it got.

Right from the start. every buff any class brought should have been organized into three categories: absolutely necessary buffs that raids are balanced around, buffs good for min/max players, but won’t really harm the raid too much if they’re missing, and buffs that just have to remain unique.

The first category would contain Replenishment and nothing else. As it’s such an important buff that every mana using class is balanced around it’s presence, this buff should be spread around enough that at least half the classes can bring it. Not necessarily will bring it, but have the option to. (more…)

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Mabd asked about the ignite nerf last post. Which confuses me, because there isn’t one.

Or at least, I’m not aware of one. I’m not aware of a great many things, like my dentist appointment next week or that creepy guy who keeps leaving confetti in my mailbox.

There is this:

Ignite: The damage done by this talent no longer receives modifications from effects that increase or decrease damage done by a percentage.

But this doesn’t seem to actually effect anything. All the usualy percentage effects (such as, say Ferocious Inspiration or Ebon Plaguebringer) haven’t changed at all from live to PTR. External effects (such as Malygos’ sparklies) also have no behavioural difference. (more…)

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I Have Nothing to Say (I Lied)

There’s really nothing interesting going on.

There’s been no mage relevant news in days and days, no new mechanic changes, not even a hint that the problems this class is facing has even been acknoledged.

I guess there’s Shattering Throw? Sure, let’s talk about that.

Shattering Throw is a new warrior ability that allows them to remove an invulnerability effect. Normally, the spell ability deals damage and reduces armor by 20%. But if the target is affected by an immunity, it removes it instead (5 min cooldown).

Now I know what you’re thinking. “HOLY GOD ALMIGHTY MY ICE BLOCK! /wrists”. Am I close?

Relaaaax. It’s not that bad. An ability like this won’t have much of an effect for 5v5 and 3v3 arena teams. There might be some initial shock when teams first encounter this ability, but strategies will evolve and soon this will simply be another tool to counter in a fight.

2v2 mages are getting shafted, of course, but hey, even that doesn’t matter too much. Mages aren’t exactly doing so hot in the 2v2 bracket;  neither are warriors, for that matter. (more…)

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Random PTR Observations

I hate to use the word gimmicky to describe a particular raid encounter.

Frankly, any encounter that isn’t a straight up tank and spank is a gimmicky fight, thanks to all the… well, gimmicks. Even Patchwerk is, technically, a gimmicky fight thanks to the Hateful Strikes.

But I really can’t come up with a better word for the encounters in Ulduar. Gimmicky is just… so… fitting.

There are fights with constant movement. Fights with deadly AoEs that you then need to take advantage of to win the encounter. Fights with a bajillion adds. Fights where the raid has to split up. And multiple combinations thereof.

And this is before people start messing with hard modes.

It’s hard not to think of the repercussions all these gimmicks will have on preferred specs for the future of mage raiding.

First concern.

Evocation. Even when stacked with Icy Veins, it still takes many seconds to cast, depending on how much haste you have. Could be anywhere from 5-6 seconds, maybe four if you stack it with Bloodlust/Heroism too.

In any case, it’s still a relatively long time. (more…)

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Mages aren’t alone in this whole “talent bloat” issue, either.

Pretty much every class has this issue with some talents being completely mandatory.

Druids were brought up last post, specifically the talent Omen of Clarity. For those of you unfamiliar with the talent, OoC is basically Arcane Concentration, except it costs 1 talent point rather than 5.

Yeah, it’s an awesome talent. Yeah, pretty much every druid on the planet includes it in their spec.

So Blizzard decided to make the early resto tree a little less useless to the feral and boomkin druids heading down there for a single talent.

Furor, for instance. Right in the first tier. A feral druid can pick this up, essentially guaranteeing a feral tank at least 10 rage when a fight starts. A moonkin can invest here, too, boosting the value of their intellect by 10% for doing so.

And if that wasn’t enough, patch 3.1 is letting Imp. Mark of the Wild improve all of the druids stats by 1% per rank.

In the second tier, feral druids can pick up Naturalist, which gives their physical damage a hearty 10% boost. All druids can pick up a talent that reduces the mana cost of shapeshifting. (more…)

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Mandatory Talent Bloat

Hi there. Welcome to Critical QQ. This is a blog written by streams of QQ pouring down the face of a very sad person who plays WoW.

Prepare for QQ.

There will be a LOT of it in the following days.

First, a couple things Ghostcrawler has stated.

One. A tree is considered “bloated” if, after taking all of it’s mandatory DPS talents, it only has 2-3 points left to spend on random stuff, like utility and so forth.

Two. Any player can sacrifice small amounts of DPS in order to gain some utility. For instance, a frost mage can drop a point in Arctic Winds to pick up Deep Freeze.

These points are important, please remember them. There will be a test.

So then. Let’s take a look at some numbers, just tree by tree for now.

Arcane needs to spend a minimum of 53 talents in it’s home tree to pick up all the important DPS talents.

Fire needs to spend a minimum of 51 talent points, and you can make a very strong argument for 54.

Frost, too, needs to spend a minimum of 53 talent points.

So far, so good. (more…)

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There are three types of talents. Talents that buff only you and your performance, talents that buff only somebody else and their performance, and talents that do both.

Take Improved Fireball. This talent only improves your own performance, having zero effect on anyone else.

Improved Scorch, on the other hand, provides a very powerful buff to everyone else. The mage does benefit from the debuff, too, but there isn’t anything about the talent that is pure selfishness. In fact, it actually lowers the mage’s DPS to keep the debuff up.

Focus Magic is something in the middle. The buffee gets a 3% crit boost, and so does the buffer.

There have been and still are many buffs that are selfless in nature, but most of them have quietly evolved to have a selfish portion to them anyways.

Improved Mark of the Wild, for instance. The talent used to increase the strength of Mark of the Wild. While this did provide a little bit of a buff for the druid, the talent’s main purpose was to buff everyone else. Now, in addition to boosting the effect of MotW, it will also give the druid a permanent 1/2% boost to all of their stats. (more…)

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Preliminary Frost Testing

Was able to waste some time with a dummy on the PTR with a frost build.

Replenishment is nice, but it’s suffering from a fairly huge bug right now. The same bug, actually, that plagued Shadow Priests back in LK beta.

Replenishment, as you know, ticks every second. But it doesn’t tick immediately, it ticks the following second.

With three points in Enduring Winter, every single frostbolt is going to refresh Replenishment.

Replenishment normally looks like this:

0.00 – You gain Replenishment

1.00 – Replenishment ticks

2.00 – Replenishment tocks

3.00 – Replenishment ticks

And so forth, ticking or tocking every second. But what happens when you refresh it right away? (more…)

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