Friday, February 8, 2008
So this time around I’m going to focus on the tree that most Druid players consider the fastest way to level from 1 to 70. Within this tree you have the ability to Tank or to do dps with your Bear and Cat forms. Let me be clear in saying that honestly, I feel that even if you want to go Balance or Restoration later on, the best and most fun way to level a Druid, at least until level 40, is to play through the Feral tree. Not only will it give you boosts in speed, strength and additional attacks, but it will also give you the chance to see what a tank has to go through as well as melee dps. You will find yourself having a better affinity for both. While they may not be up to your play style, you will at least spend some time in both pairs of shoes.
A Druid breaks down like this. From levels 1 to 10 you are a caster, period. At level ten you get bear form and you learn to tank. At level 20 you receive cat form, dps machine from then until 40. Once you hit forty you have the opportunity to respec to one of the other trees or you can wait until 70 to do that, most Druids do.
Let it be known that this is considered one of the two main specs for Druids. Laser Chickens are off spec, so that means that I’m odd….but you knew that :P.
Ferocity is a five point talent that reduces the cost of Maul, Swipe, Claw, Rake and Mangle. These are different spells for either a bear or a cat, so you’re getting the benefit of it in both of your main forms when you’re still a young druid. The thing about the two forms is that they take from Warrior and Rogue in that they use Rage and Energy. So you need to keep both up to be able to have the strength to finish a fight and the ability to switch between spells to get it done quickly. This is a talent that will really help you in making sure you don’t run on empty too fast.
Feral Aggression is another five pointer that can boost your Demoralizing Roar and you Ferocious Bite. First thing about it that turns me off to it is that it’s only for bear form, while that might not seem like a big thing, Ferocious Bite isn’t that great of a spell to begin with. While Demoralizing Roar is great, you can’t use it in close quarters because you can agro other mobs within the area and it eats up a chunk of rage to boot. I’ve played with Druids for a while before I got serious about Bosque, one in Horde and like 3 Alliance, I never once bothered to put points in to this talent, hasn’t ever bothered me.
Feral Instinct is a three point talent that is a must have for two reasons. First, it gives you that extra attention since it will give you up to 15% more threat when you’re in that form. However the other reason is the one that called to me the most, it reduces detect ability when you are prowling, so when you go stealth. Let me tell you, there are going to be times when a quest will just call for you to go touch something or read something that you’re going to be GLAD that you have this talent, it will save you the time and effort of fighting through a group of mobs higher level than you to get what you need. This is a MUST HAVE for this tree.
Brutal Impact is a two pointer. It can increase the time for stun time for Bash and Pounce by up to 1 second. I never put points into this one and I had reasoning for it. If you’re in a group, the stun that you have already is enough to keep a mob messed up long enough for your dps to do the serious damage they can inflict and if you’re going solo and doing the pounce, you have enough attacks in your book to take down a mob before they come to and seriously threaten you.
Thick Hide is three points well spent as it increases the Armor from items you have on up to 10%. I don’t need to tell you just how important something like that is especially when you’re leveling and don’t have the money to go run to the nearest AH and buy new gear every level. One of my Druid friends is a tank and he has about 24k armor, this one of the talents that he truly loves.
There are only two classes that get a travel form. Shamans get Ghost Wolf at level 20 and Druids get Travel Form (Cheetah) at level 30. Before those two however, you’re hoofing it. Most Druids find that once they get cat form, that’s the form they can most often be found in. Feral Swiftness is a talent that gives cat form a little extra running speed. For 2 points you get as 30% speed increase while also giving an additional 4% dodge rating to your bear form. It’s a great talent that will see you moving through zones a bit quicker and give you the ability to run for you life when you’re attacked by several mobs, a little faster.
Feral Charge is the first spell that you can learn specifically from this tree and in no other way. Like I stated before, bears are like Warriors. This is a spell that really makes it true as it gives your bear form the ability to charge a mob. This stuns the mob for a second and gives you the chance to rip into them before they even know what hit them. The downfall is that when you’re starting a battle cold you’ll have to use Enrage to really get this started, still very little to have to pay to use this great talent.
Sharpened Claws is a great little three pointer as it gives up to a 6% high chance to get a critical strike when you’re in animal form. It also bleeds into a talent a little ways down the tree. Really though even without it bleeding into something else it’s a great talent as it raises that critical strike which gives you more agro as a bear and keeps the attention of a mob as a cat.
There’s obviously more to the tree but I want to take this a bit at a time as it gives both you, the reader, and myself enough time to digest exactly what it is that each talent can do. Plus and more importantly, it doesn’t bore you to tears. There’s a couple of other things that I might post today but this does it for the first part of the Feral tree.
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
All things considered, do you think that a Moonkin Spec is just a fad?
Don’t get me wrong, I love my laser chicken. I can out dps a mage my own level at the moment, I learned this while I was in a PUG through Mana Tombs, much to his despair. I ask the question because I went over to the Elitist Jerks Forum and was looking up more information on Moonkins since I don’t know many people that play one and what I read was a lot of people saying that the Moonkin spec was just a novelty that eventually would go away.
Now I know that it’s not a common spec and honestly it’s the reason that I chose to go that way. Most Druids I know either fall into the Feral or Resto groups. They’re the most commonly used and the ones that are always in a raid because they’re either going to tank or they’re going to heal. I don’t want to do either with this toon. Look at the way that I have my stuff set up and you know and realize that I already have a decent tank and a good healer. I wanted a caster type and honestly, you can’t go wrong with a Moonkin with all the extra armor they have to begin with.
Sometimes I wonder if players just want cookie cutter copies of themselves running around doing the same thing they are doing. I mean seriously, do you want all druids to be either Feral or Resto? Would you want all Paladins to be Prot or Holy? What about priests? Should they all just be Holy as well? The thing about the game is that we’re all going to find different things that excite us about the game and the characters we play. To whit I’ve gone ahead and made two of my 70s into the cookie cutter type of character that is needed and while I love them and hop on to them from time to time, they aren’t the toons that I find myself wanting to play anymore. I want to be able to have FUN!
Bosque has been nothing but fun to me from the onset. Granted that the first thirty levels were like pulling teeth but after that I haven’t looked back nor have I wanted to switch around and respec a thousand times. (From what I hear that might change with 2.4, you’ll no longer have to relearn spells from a specific tree if you respec back and forth.)
I know I’m rambling but it comes to a question. A question to you guys, the readers and I know you’re out there. Why do you play the game? Why do you play your character? Are you doing it to fit into a mold? Playing WoW by itself is fitting into a kind of mold if you think about it, you’re joining the ranks of MILLIONS of other players doing the same thing during the weeknights and weekends.
Why do you play?
Posted by Luciel at 1:00 PM
Monday, February 4, 2008
Okay I’m feeling a little better today. I’ve got twelve stitches in my back from a biopsy that they did this last week. I’m a bit of pain because it’s in my upper right shoulder and the skin has been pulled taunt to try and make it heal together. However, I owe you guys that are reading this latest Tree so here I am.
Moonfury is a talent that you can only get if you fed Nature’s Grace. It increases the percentage of damage done from Starfire, Moonfire and Wrath spells up to 10% if you feed five points. That’s an amazing little bit of explosive-ness. It’s a talent that you would be remiss in not taking if you’re building a Balance Druid.
Balance of Power also feeds into just blasting away your opponents. It raises the chance to hit your opponent and reduces the chance of an opponent hitting you! Come on, how awesome is that? Not only do you get a higher chance of hitting him and avoiding a smacking from either a mob in PVE or a player in PVP. Yes I understand that the chance is slim only 4% maximum but still, we all know that those percentages add up.
Usually I go left to right but in this instance I’m going to start in the middle of the next three because by now you should be 40 or 41. For one point, you get Moonkin form. In Moonkin form you become pretty much unstoppable if you play your toon correctly. Usually you would get Dire Bear Form if you were Feral or Tree Form if you’re a Resto. For Balance it’s Moonkin. If you’ve ever had to deal with an Owlbeast, that’s what you’re becoming. You get a 400% increase in Armor, which I don’t have to tell you is ridiculous. This means that a mob can’t just come up and three swat you, they REALLY have to work at getting you down. Already, this is enough for any caster to just jump for joy, but the form has additional added benefits. Your attack power is increased by 150% and you get Moonkin Aura. Moonkin Aura gives a higher chance to get a critical strike, by 5%. Also added to this, if you do run out of mana and go Melee there’s a chance on hit that you will regain the amount of mana that you have in attack power. So there are SEVERAL reasons to take this and run with it.
Let me point out something just so you know how much damage Moonkin Form can do. When I’m in BGs, which I find myself in at least once a day, I usually have three or four attackers on me at once because they know that amount of hurt I can do to them if I set my mind to it. I’ve been one of the top ten damage makers in AB and AV consistently, so I can put out some serious hurt in this form. The ONLY drawback in it is that I can’t HEAL in Moonkin form, you’ll be bounced out to caster form when you do that, which makes you an easier target for those gunning for ya, so be warned.
Dreamstate is a caster must. You feed it three points and it will regenerate mana equal to 10% of your intellect every five seconds, casting or non. So this means that you already have mana regenerating from your gear and Spirit and then you have this on top of that. If done right, you could very well never go without mana. Of course, as a Moonkin I don’t think that not running out of mana is an option.
Improved Faerie Fire is the next talent and while it’s great for when you’re in a group, it’s a talent that you will not find yourself using much when you are in solo mode. I didn’t put the three into this talent and honestly haven’t ever thought “Man I should’ve!” However this is a choice thing since some players love to just be in a BG all the time, having Improved Faerie Fire would be great for those players you’re in with to take advantage of. Personally, I skipped this but like I said, it’s up to the player as far as importance goes.
Wrath of Cenarius is a five point talent that adds even more damage to your Starfire and Wrath. Max it out and you get an extra 20% dmg on Starfire and an extra 10% on Wrath. If you’ve been reading about this tree you know it’s all about quick damage, fasting casting and great critical strikes. You can’t pass up this five pointer and shell out the type of damage that other Moonkins are doing.
Force of Nature is a choice, again. This is the pinnacle of the tree. It gives you minions to summon and assist you for thirty seconds. The minions in question are Treants. I would have loved to have owlbeasts, personally but Treants work just as well. Two drawbacks are that it takes up 12% of your Base Mana pool, so it’s not like there’s a set amount, say 600 Mana for every time you call on them but instead the price of calling them rises as the amount of mana at your disposal rises. The other downfall is that there is a three minute cool down on the summoning. The up side is that the three Treants do damage to any target you send them on. So if you have three mobs on you, the Treants can easily deal with one while you work on the other two or root one and finish another. It’s a great tactic really. Like I said though, to each his own.
That concludes the Balance Tree. Next we will tackle the Feral Tree and show you the tree that every druid I know feels will get you leveled the fastest to 70.
Bosque is 64.