Thursday, March 29, 2012

Human Racial Rethink Redux

    I have one Human character, my Priest. I have several times considered race-changing her to Dwarf, or even faction changing. (In which case I would roll Tauren, of course.) Though I'm satisfied with the spirit passive bonus, even when it does make capping spirit/hit tricky, I find the Human race bland and uninteresting. I am also supremely unimpressed with Every Man for Himself.

  Much ado is made about the OP-ness (say that out loud) of the Human racial EMfH. I have previously outlined the math that leads me to believe it isn't superior, but I think I transitioned too quickly into the numbers without clearly stating my logic.

  The reason I believe EMfH to be over estimated is due to my "displacement" line of reasoning. Most, if not all choices in WoW are between A, B, and C, not A or nothing. For example, compare 2/2 Improved Renew and 2/3 Divine Fury. Of course, Holy Priests take both, and Disc Priests in PvE take Divine Fury to get to Inspiration. However, Disc Priests in PvP also need to get to Inspiration, but how they get there is more flexible. A 10% stronger Renew or slightly faster GHeals? A change in playstyle can significantly alter the decision.

  So I consider EMfH an extra trinket effect, not a whole extra trinket. It displaces the need to take a Medallion with the ability to take an extra Insignia or Badge.

  If, however, I were to consider this from a DPS perspective, then yes, I can appreciate the firepower two PvE trinkets can bring, though I caution players not to forget they are more vulnerable without the extra resilience. I also lament that EMfH is still mostly useless for a Shadow Priest, due to Phantasm.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

How to Play Well

  I'm not by any means a hardcore player, but to call myself casual wouldn't be accurate either. I've built a reputation as a fast learner with a wide base of knowledge, with expertise in some areas.

  • I've played Hunter, Priest, Shaman, and DK to 85.
  • I raided in ToC and ICC (11/12 when it counted) as a Hunter.
  • I pugged as much as possible in Cata on my Priest and Hunter, 11/12 then 6/7.
  • I've done rated battlegrounds and some 2v2 both as a Priest and Hunter, random battlegrounds with my Shaman and DK.
  • I consider myself an expert at all Hunter specs, especially SV.
  • I've made a special study of the buff/debuff system.
  • I'm a well rounded Priest healer, having played A/A Disc, regular Disc, and Holy in PvE, Disc and Shadow in PvP.
  • Though new to Shaman, I manage to top charts in LFR as Resto or Enhance.
  • I'm currently tanking heroics on my DK, almost geared enough to hit LFR.
  • I have 1 of each crafting profession turning profit, mostly focused on the ore shuffle, glyphs, PvP gear, item enhancements, and a bit of cross-faction arbitrage.
  • I've leveled a Druid to 50 and a Pally to 45 and climbing fast, both alternating tanking and melee DPS, and also a Rogue to 50, alternating dungeons and battlegrounds.
  • I've played the other classes to at least 20, to get the first impressions of the class.
  • I'm familiar with a wide variety of addons.
  • I'm typically able to write my own macros tailored to my playstyle.
But enough about me. Here's what I think are the basics behind playing well that hold true across all classes and roles:

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Item Level Inflation

  In the Dev Watercooler concerning item level inflation, Ghostcrawler states "If you look at the item level curves, you can see that most of the growth occurs at the maximum character levels for the various expansions." Now, I partially agree and disagree, with the caveat that disagreeing with GC carries a high risk of being wrong.

  Here's the popular chart showing the rate of ilevel inflation so far:

Item level vs. character level. Brown = vanilla. Green = BC. Blue = LK. Red = Cat.

  As you can see, there are upticks at the end of each expansion, caused by new content, but more problematic is the increased rate of inflation in recent expansions.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Holy Pally Gearing Speculation

  Perhaps the issue with intellect plate deserves a bit more than the somewhat sarcastic treatment I gave it a while back. I think also that the issue needs to be framed properly.

Thursday, March 22, 2012


  I took an unexpected break from WoW, but I'm back now.

  I have the annual pass, so whenever the beta opens up to me, I'll start testing with gusto! I probably won't be merely reporting facts, though. There's plenty enough of that. I think I'll focus more on a editorial perspective.

  I'm not up to speed on PvP yet. If I get back into it again I'll post on it.

  Professions may wind down soon, but with the 15% raid buff incoming, and the PvP season still in full swing, the various markets will likely remain productive. I expect some stagnation pre-MoP, though. Also, I'm to take a dual-themed approach going into MoP.
  • Firstly, I wish to protect the gold and other assets I've acquired from inflation. I expect soon enough everyone will have 6 digit bank accounts. 
  • Secondly, I will take advantage of the expansion through all of the crafting professions, even cooking. I still hate gathering.
  • As a minor goal, (one that may fall flat, or may be lucrative, who knows?) I will try to instigate as much cross-faction trading as possible. Large gold reserves will be necessary to do this, so I'll try to double what I have (about 200k) before MoP hits.
  While I was away, I had time to think about what aspects of the game I missed most. Crafting, dungeon crawling on alts, and battlegrounds stood out. I used to aspire to be a steady raider, maybe even a progression raider, but after that avenue was closed to me last year, I was forced to diversify my WoW experience. I'm glad I did.