Friday, March 1, 2013

Playing Rares

  It seems to have gotten to that point just before a new patch where seemingly boring topics get brought up, but a certain type of player flocks to the topic and is so eager to dissect it, share data, exposit opinions, ect. I am that type of player. As a matter of fact, the URL of this blog (thehunterchannel) is a reference to when my Wrath guild members would say they'd get me my own Hunter channel to talk about the finer details of playing the class (of which is my 5th 90, but still my main!). I think they just wanted me to shut up so we could get on with the raid, though.

  Anyway, the latest topic to take my fancy is race/class combinations! How exciting! I've already posted about My opinion of WoW Races, in which I reference Pratchett, Tolkien, Star Trek, and Napolean Dynomite, but so far I've been mostly silent about classes, much less race/class combinations. The article that piqued my interest is Are you a rare? on WoW Insider. Of the race/class combos listed, I play a Dwarf Mage, a Tauren Monk, and a Dwarf Rogue. The Mage and Monk are level 30 and 20, so they don't really count yet, but the Dwarf Rogue does in spades.

  The race/class list:
  1. Troll Monk: 17,100
  2. Dwarf Monk: 17,700
  3. Orc Monk: 23,200
  4. Dwarf Mage: 33,700
  5. Tauren Monk: 34,400
  6. Gnome Monk: 35,000
  7. Undead Monk: 44,300
  8. Dwarf Warlock: 44,800
  9. Pandaren Rogue: 57,100
  10. Troll Warlock: 60,800
  11. Orc Mage: 64,800
  12. Dwarf Rogue: 65,200
  13. Troll Death Knight: 69,000
  14. Pandaren Mage: 70,400
  15. Blood Elf Monk: 72,200
As the article points out, Monks feature heavily, mostly due to the heavy influence of Pandaren Monks. If we eliminate Monks from the list, we get:
  1. Dwarf Mage: 33,700
  2. Dwarf Warlock: 44,800
  3. Pandaren Rogue: 57,100
  4. Troll Warlock: 60,800
  5. Orc Mage: 64,800
  6. Dwarf Rogue: 65,200
  7. Troll Death Knight: 69,000
  8. Pandaren Mage: 70,400
   About Pandaren Mages and Rogues briefly, I think it's natural that the Rogue option is less popular, since Monks are the newer option, the Legendary Bump is over, and the class is currently experiencing somewhat of a population crunch. Cynwise has an amazing as usual article that touches on it. I can't begin to guess why Pandaren Mages are less popular, though.

  Of the new options Cataclysm brought us, we have Dwarf Mage, Dwarf Warlock, Orc Mage, and Troll Warlock on the Rare list. If we consider the bonuses other races have that benefit casters, i.e. Gnomes, Draenei, and Worgen, it's apparent why people playing these classes tend not to choose Dwarf. That doesn't explain why Orc Mages are unpopular, though, since Blood Fury is a competitive racial trait, as well as Command, for Frost spec. Same with Trolls with Berserking and Beast Slaying. I guess everyone is just rolling Blood Elves.

  That leaves Troll Death Knights from Wrath, and Dwarf Rogues from Classic.

  Why Troll Death Knights are not more popular, I can't even begin to guess. Neither can I begin to care. It's not that I dislike Trolls, I'm just largely indifferent to them. I really like Vol'jin's character, and the story of the Trolls in general, but it just doesn't click for me. It's not that I dislike Death Knights either. Some of my favorite tanks are Death Knights.

  Dwarf Rogues are a unique specimen. Dwarves are typically more traditional, plain, straight forward. There's nothing sneaky or sinister about a beer stein in the face. It would seem that Dwarves are more Strength or Stamina types than Agility, except that there is a large Dwarf Hunter and Shaman population, and I'm pretty sure a lot of those Shaman are specced Enhance. So what is it about Rogues that is different than those two classes? Well, for Dwarf Shaman, there's the Wildhammer heritage being claimed, and Dwarf Hunters were featured in the friggin WoW Preview. For Rogues, there's not so much in the way of lore or story.

  Why I play a Dwarf Rogue really has nothing to do with the particular race/class dynamic. I just like Dwarves. When I went to roll a new class, the first decision was Horde or Ally, and since Tauren cannot be Rogues, it defaulted to Ally. Since Dwarves can be Rogues, it defaulted to Dwarf Rogue. I didn't even consider playing any of the other races. I tried a Worgen Druid, but Worgen are just especially hairy and noisy Humans. I have a Human Priest (which I have considered race changing to Dwarf, but I've grown attached), but one Human is enough. I've played the old and new Gnome starting zone, just for the experience, so I know for sure I could not play a Gnome for any greater length of time.

  Special by happenstance, I suppose. A female Dwarf Rogue, my first to 90, and my best equipped, currently. I'm raiding as Sub with a Combat spec for the Dogs. I've been farming a bit of honor upgrading my last 463's, but I'm not very good at Rogue PvP. I do like capping a lot. Between Smoke Bomb, Blind, and outright burst DPS, I can capture Gold Mine often enough. Now if Ally can just defend a base once in a while, we'd be winning.

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