So I visited HERE and just watched the video (specifically the Q&A from the feral at 28:50) and the response from the crowd (and the Dev.) just sickened me.
Did I miss when Feral druids became Uber in PvP? Ferals in PvP won’t be able to put up a rip and turtle in bear and just watch you bleed to death anymore in MoP, That’s why we created the extra tree to split bear and cat talents out. Audience cheers? Really? WTF? I don’t remember Feral PvP ever being easy. I remember it being tolerable with ArP though still a pain in the arse as I was always expected to do things like cyclone and heal which fundamentally as a feral sucked. Even then they killed ArP. They took away our ability to shift out of snares. They took away the nice vial trinket proc (O.K., that was OP for more than just ferals). But when the hell was feral PvP put up a rip, go bear, I win? WTF? What crappy ass players are these ferals going up against?
Honestly, I don’t really have a strong stance for either keeping BearCat or losing BearCat. But tying that change due to PvP was just a WTF moment for me. For PvE I don’t this change is a big deal because most ferals are just going to dual spec into bear tank and kitty dps since at endgame collecting caster and physical DPS sets is just too much a pain in the arse. That and when a tank doesn’t show usually the first glance comes our way as a sub. All BearCat was good for in PvE was really the oh crap moments and in good guilds these are few and far between.
Maybe that is what I should be doing before MoP releases. Griefing people in arena with a rip, shift bear, win. Yeah, that’s the ticket.
Ok, just in case… MoP = Mist of Pandaria
Lets take a look at the new talents available, and let me start by saying it’s weird to have a bunch of talents to choose from that don’t necessarily give any kind of advantage to my main role as a damage dealer. Here is a LINK to the full descriptions of every talent.
The first choice is between Feline Swiftness, Displace Beast, and Tireless Pursuit. I think the constant 20% increase to speed while in cat form is a no brainer here, the others look more useful for PvP. Granted there might be particular PvE boss encounters that might favor one of the others but in general I think FS is the way to go.
The next level we choose between Nature’s Swiftness, Renewal, and Cenarion Ward. Let me say that I like the last option the best as it gives us the ability of an instant cast HoT while in Cat form. This screams raid utility to me and from a kitty that prides himself on helping the raid beyond just dealing damage I like the difference this could make in a PvE encounter.
Next we choose between Faerie Swarm, Mass Entaglement, and Typhoon. I think here Typhoon will be what I choose, an in Cat form knockback… SWEET! Faerie Swarm is replacing FF and depending on raid comp might be needed instead but I raid 25 man I am going to wager the debuff can be applied by someone else. The ME talent might be useful in certain encounters but is not castable in Cat form so I kinda don’t like it.
The next level we have Wild Charge, Incarnation, and Force of Nature. From a shear DPS vantage point I kinda like Force of Nature if the trees do high damage. It’s castable in Cat form and easy DPS. The other 2 talents sound similar with one having a charge component and the other one not. Wild Charge seems pretty dumb actually, It puts me behind the boss and lets me ravage without a positioning requirement… ah… yeah, ok. Incarnation looks the best, which allows ravages from behind without the need of being in stealth. It looks like with this talent we would open with berserking and ravaging our butts off with the 50% increase to crit with ravage at boss health above 80%…. interesting.
The next level is my first disappointment. 2 of the 3 choices are basically for bear as using them puts us into bear form automatically. So we choose from Demo Roar, Bear Hug, and Ursol’s Vortex. I am so picking UV here, not that as a kitty we have much choice. It’s an AoE grip usable in Cat form. That is just sick OP if you think about it. In PvE we get to suck mobs to us and swipe… I freaking love it. It makes us an adds magnet (or lets us pick a spot for the magnet) for 15 seconds. Honestly this is probably an awesome raid utility on fights with a pesky add phase.
Our last selection at level 90 is a complete disappointment. Heart of the Wild, Master Shapeshifter, Distanglement. HotW is most likely the given as it takes Hit to 100% and gives us an INT boost from agility which will improve our utility heals. The other 2 look very PvP centric.
The last cool thing to note, and I don’t know how the heck they are going to actually get this to work in game is Symbiosis. Basically we get to target another player and grab an ability belonging to that targets class within the limits of our specialization. This has buggy written all over it imho. Our target gets one of our abilities, also based on our spec. It sounds pretty cool as we get the special for an hour and it lasts through death so basically we will be doing this before a fight starts but I might see where a mid fight application might prove useful. If we get to use this attack in kitty form I say cool, Kitty Pyro? Kitty Chain Lightning? Ok, probably not since we would have to be in boom spec for that I would guess. So Kitty FoK / Swipe AoE craziness? Lots of possibilities here and I am sure some leet guild will figure out some way to exploit this running a party of half druids to down some heroic boss.
All in all, I guess these changes have the ability to drastically change the way we play our kitty. The question is do we use this stuff? Does it matter in terms of DPS? Will it make playing more fun? My guess is at first playing might be more entertaining but in the end if my damage sucks I won’t be happy.
Sorry I have not been posting much lately but I thought I would let people know that with a decent hybrid build and good gear it is entirely possible to become your 10 man’s 3rd tank when needed.
I have successful tanked Heroic Hal drakes to help get him down. I have also successfully tanked Nef’s adds in phase 1 and will continue to do so as we get practice jumping out of buggy lava (don’t ask).
My build… if it helps anyone
This build is Kitty DPS minded first and Bear Tank second. I did not have to give up ANY Cat DPS talents which was my most important requirement.
The bear talents I have are enough to be successful in my role.
Ding 85!… Like last week.
Sorry for the lack of updates but I have been playing with what time I have between work, family, and working out/running. I am working on getting fit for the next summer so I can surf a little more than this last year…. on that note, Ding 40! I turned 40 this year… and I want to get back into pre 30’s shape.
Anyhow, Cata is proving to be a lot of fun thus far. The 5 man instances, quests, cut scenes, etc. are all really cool. I will try and post kitty pro tips specifically about Heroic boss fights soon but I can give some general tips I have been using to help reduce the amount of wipes… Heroics have been pretty challenging but far from impossible wipefest when playing in guild with some skilled players. We have had a wipe or 2… or a couple more… figuring out mechanics since we did read any strategy prior… trust me when I say it is more entertaining that way.
On to some tips while I am flying to my next Archeology point…
- CC is your friend, get the Glyph of Entangling Roots… you will be happy you did. Use focus and Keybinding to make sure your mob stays put.
- Spec for Hybrid in 1 Spec. Don’t take Pulverize, Perseverance, Stampede, Predatory Strikes, Brutal Impact, or Nurturing Instinct. This spec is perfect for Kitty DPS with the fail safe in a tank death and you can use your 2nd spec for Boom, Heal, or full on bear. This is perfect but might change when raiding starts.
- Do Hyjal… go back to Vash after 85.
- Check Quartermasters for gear and build rep through tabards and dailies. It is the fastest way to get geared up for Heroics.
- Be patient. Explain instance fights to new people. Take your time.
- Reforge Crit/Haste to mastery. Reforge Hit/Expertise to Mastery once you have enough.
- Use Mongoose on your weapon until you get a really good one, then go with the new agility enchant.
- Make sure you Quest deep into Twilight Highlands and get this staff… Staff of Draconic Pacification. The CoC (New Ring of Blood) is only good for your caster or healing spec.
- Be careful with buying gems, your Meta will require more blue than red… which makes gemming tricky… think it out first.
- Try not to pug heroics… seriously, join a guild.
That’s all for now, I will try to get strategy up for each Heroic as time allows… maybe one instance a day.
That is me 3rd on the big bad spider. This was without any flask and haste food because I didn’t want to waste better stuff on such an easy boss.
Mind you this is with a Spec taking what is needed to MT 25 mans. I am using the Rip Glyph only since my other slots are used for tanking glyphs.
So yes, at this point feral druids can have 1 Spec to Tank and do decent DPS just like in BC. So we can go from 45K+ HP Hurtful soaks on Patchwerk, MT anything in game, and still switch to DPS and be somewhere in the top 10 for damage output. All the while being able to Brez and Innervate when needed or OoCRez when all the other healers die during a partial wipe.
I would say the state of feral druids is in pretty good shape. I will get back to you when I start 2v2ing arena again which is coming up soon. I don’t know how that is going to go with how OP other classes are in there along with having too many damn buttons to press now for burst damage and cc.