Wrath Priest Tailoring Set

Is there going to be a Primal Mooncloth equivalent in the expansion?

In a word, yes there will be. The next layer of cloth is called Moonshroud. Here’s the two tailoring items we can make from them in order to bootstrap ourselves into Naxx:

Moonshroud Gloves
Moonshroud Robe

Gloves requirements:

4 Moonshroud
4 Bolt of Imbued Frostweave
1 Eternium Thread
1 Frozen Orb (Primal Nether equivalent)

Robe requirements:

8 Moonshroud
6 Bolt of Imbued Frostweave
1 Eternium Thread
1 Frozen Orb

A Bolt of Imbued Frostweave takes 3 Bolt of Frostweave. A Bolt of Frostweave takes 5 Frostweave Cloth

A Bolt of Imbued Frostweave takes 15 Frostweave. The Robe takes 90 Frostweave and the Gloves take 60.

I think.

Assuming I carried the 1 right.

You can learn these from the Grand Master Tailoring Trainers in Dalaran or Howling Fjord.

There’s some great discussion going on right now in Plusheal about Priest professions. Others are discussing the future of Priestly trades. Why not jump in and join them?

Guardian Spirit Boosted to 50%

Just in case you missed it, here’s the blue post.

Great improvement, in my opinion! I’m writing a WI Skill Mastery post later on about this tacky spell after getting used to it in the various Wrath raids. I’ll place a link here later on when it’s up and live for you to take a gander at.

Priests, WotLK, and Wyn’s Thoughts

Priests, WotLK, and Wyn’s Thoughts

crying-woman 

My first reaction to the news was utter, stunned silence. Anyone who’s ever been on vent with me (or listened to a certain blogcast) knows how rare that is. There were no words to encompass my shock and depression.

“Why?” I will be asked. “Racials were so stupid. We were the only class that had to worry about what race to roll to THAT extent. This will make things much easier.” Perhaps. But I am a Priest-class enthusiast. I have two level 70 Priests. One Human, one Troll. I have a handful of Priest alts just to experience the flavor that their new spells give. (Starshards is so Pretty!!) I am not a role-player, but I would find it impossible to not spend so much time with someone without learning a little about their personality, and I somehow don’t think any of my Priests will be the same without abilities shaped so directly by the life-experiences they had before I met them. How can you be a faith-leader for your faction, a student of the Light and Shadow, without developing a few personal opinions?

And so it is with a desperately heavy heart, a crinkle in my nose, and tears in my eyes that I say farewell to Hex of Weakness and Shadowguard. Admittedly, Renwein will not miss Feedback – we didn’t use it much – but Wynthea will no longer mock Paladins and less-gifted Priests as they attempt to dispel the curse preventing their heals’ full value. No more will I have a funny little purple satellite for company, which had a clever habit of proc’ing Shadow Weaving and Blackout when I was Shadow-spec’d. Maybe I’m taking it too hard. I probably am. I just looked forward to levels 10 and 20 so much with each new race…. and now it won’t matter. My lowbie Priests will be deleted, since they serve no purpose.

Frankly, this latest blow to my class-pride hits a little harder because of how I feel about Priests’ role in general. Go dig up your classic-wow handbook. The one that hasn’t been updated, that still comes with the game. See where it describes the classes? It talks about Priests being the premiere healers in WoW. That’s why I rolled my first one 3 years ago. It’s why I’ve stayed with the class for so long. Other classes can do other things – Paladins and Druids can also tank, all the other healing classes can Melee DPS, and Shammies and Druids both can caster-DPS as well. Sure you can go Shadow – but Blizz has pigeonholed Shadow Priests into raid utility and mana-return. (In my opinion, if Shadow Priests were supposed to be competitive on DPS, Mind Flay would have a 40 yd. range like everyone else’s bread-and-butter spells. Among other things.) Shadow Priests have to fight tooth-and-nail for every scrap of damage and respect they get. Holy Priests…. well, we were what the class was originally designed to be. That’s why classic Tier sets were all Holy-based. Priest was synonymous with healer.

But now, Druids are gaining a circle-of-renew. Paladins if glyphed properly will be able to AoE heal. Shamans have raid-wide utility, in addition to the original work-horse AoE heal. And Priests? The spell we and our raids have come to depend on is being given a 6-second cooldown. (That’s right, all the new patch notes show that that abominable nerf that went away on the Beta realms is BACK and going LIVE.) Take a look at the new Priest Healing spells: we get TWO.

Divine Hymn – You recite a Holy hymn, causing the closest 10 enemies within 0 yards to become incapacitated for 20 sec., and heals the closest friendly targets within 0 yards for 4506 over 6 sec. 20% of base mana, 1.5 sec cast, 3 min cooldown.

and our 80-point talent: Guardian Spirit – Calls upon a guardian spirit to watch over the friendly target. The spirit increases the healing received by the target by 40%, and also prevents the target from dying by sacrificing itself. This sacrifice terminates the effect but heals the target of 10% of their maximum health. Lasts 10 sec.

All our other talents are focused on increasing the amount healed by spells we already have, or the speed with which they are delivered. (oh, wait, that got nerfed a bit, too.)

In the rush to make every spec viable, and to homogenize the capabilities of the classes to avoid any specific requirements for any given raid…. Blizzard hadn’t stripped Priests of what made us special – our flexibility as healers – but added those utility spells to the other healers. This latest news goes further – rather than leaving us with our level 70 spells in a level 80 world, it actively takes away MORE of what makes us unique.

I will continue on. I am still very excited about a lot of things coming up in Wrath. The scenery continues to be beautiful, and Dalaran is the best-developed capital city ever. But now, my unbridled enthusiasm for the xpac is tempered by a sense of loss. I reveled in being the strongest, most adaptable healing class, and the class which, in my opinion, required the most fore-thought, planning, and knowledge of game-mechanics of all. I’m sad that both of the sources of my loyalty to the class are eroding. Perhaps it’s a good thing I’ve familiarized myself with Death Knight mechanics.

Luv,
A very depressed Wyn

BREAKING: Priest Racials Removed

“In an upcoming build all Priest racials have been retired, except the following:

Desperate Prayer – This is now the 11-point talent in Holy, Holy Nova is now a base ability. Cooldown also reduced to 30 seconds.

Devouring Plague – Now a base ability. Cooldown reduced to 30 seconds, mana cost greatly reduced.

Symbol of Hope – Now a base ability. Now restores 5% base mana every 2 seconds for 8 seconds to your party. Renamed “Hymn of Hope.”
While this change does reduce the “uniqueness” of different Priests, we feel game balance as a whole will benefit.

Note: These new “racials” are not racials, they are trainable to all Priests.”

Source: Blizzard Forums Blue Post 
Thanks to Ravageclaw for letting me know. Expect this news to filter out to the big sites momentarily (I’ve alerted them).

Thoughts? Initial reactions? I’m going to reserve judgement for the time being.

Liveblogging Naxxramus

Liveblogging Naxxramus

naxx

Future Overachievers Anonymous: How Achievements Will Rock the Social World of Wrath of the Lich King

Ever since the first articles started coming out about the Wrath Alpha, I’ve been intrigued by the achievements interface. Most writers in the blogosphere are excited about the change–at the level of the individual player, the achievement system will enhance the fun factor of playing the game. Check out this article from Matticus to see what I mean. The achievement panel as it currently exists in the Beta is a detailed look at your character’s past, and it serves as a scrapbook or photo album of that character’s virtual life.

sydera best achievements

On a personal level, I could not be more excited about the achievements. Many of the cleverly-described feats on Sydera’s achievement screen took very real blood, sweat, and sleep deprivation from my entire guild to accomplish, and seeing them spelled out makes me feel quite proud. As for the personal achievements, I feel nostalgic when I see how many quests I did in certain areas or how many horde fires I extinguished during the Fire Festival.

While the achievement system may be new to the World of Warcraft, it’s not exactly an innovation in the gaming universe. The WoW achievement system is a descendant of the character progress-tracking systems in console games and single-player PC games. High score tables such as those found on old-school arcade machines like Ms. Pacman or Donkey Kong are among the earliest achievement systems. When video games first invaded the living room, Atari pioneered a system of clothing patches you could earn by mailing them a photograph of your TV screen. In more recent years, achievement systems have become a fully articulated means to track one’s virtual progress and experience. For example, in Neverwinter Nights, my heroine’s feats were described at length in a journal, to which I could add my own notes if I wished. I really enjoyed reading through that journal at the end of the game–while I’m not a roleplayer per se, I do delight in story and character.

The direct ancestor of achievements in Wrath, however, is the system developed by Microsoft for the Xbox 360. The Xbox 360 achievement system is unique in two ways: the console stores achievements independent of specific games, and all Xbox 360 games are designed to have achievements. The company also intends for players to view and react to others’ achievements through Xbox LIVE gamer profiles. As their website cheerily declares, “Half the fun comes in comparing your own achievements to those of your friends and competitors.”

In Wrath, players will similarly be able to “compare achievements” when they inspect each other, opening up a whole new avenue of uses for the system.

isidora compares achievements

The crucial difference between Wrath and Xbox LIVE is that Warcraft is a fully-fledged social universe with millions of citizens who constantly interact in profound and diverse ways. The revolutionary aspects of the new WoW achievement system will thus be in the realm of player interaction. And now, I will break out my fuzzy pink [Future-Predicting Dice of the Monkey] and prophesy for you what will happen when the WoW community meets the achievement panel. Based on my observations of the current social customs of WoW players, sweeping changes will occur in the following four areas.

1. Guild recruiting

This is the potential change that interests me the most, as I really enjoy interviewing new players for my guild. With the achievement system in place, my interview criteria are going to change. In addition to a chat over vent, I will start requiring a character-to-character interview. The recruit and I will have a seat in the Pig-n-Whistle, and we will mutually check each other out. One of my main goals will be to read the character’s achievement panel and ask interview questions based on what I learn. Even if the achievement panel ends up as part of the armory, it will still be useful to go through the achievements in “person,” if you will.

At the most basic level, the achievement system will allow a guild recruiter to verify the information that a potential new member shares about himself. Up until now, I have had to rely on very limited tools–mostly my own intuition–to decide whether someone could be trusted. The following questions always go through my mind: “Is this player who she says she is? Did she really clear Naxx back in Vanilla WoW?” The achievement system will effectively give me a way to do a background check. In addition, it will also let me get to know the recruit a little better than I might otherwise. Like a series of Twitter updates, individual achievements don’t say much on their own, but considered together, they reveal a lot about a player’s personality and how she chooses to spend her time. If I see that the recruit has many holiday-based achievements in addition to her string of boss kills, I might guess that she would enjoy the silly social aspects of my guild as well as the raids.

2. Bragging rights

As if trade chat weren’t bad enough now, just wait till hundreds of achievement points become available. Any time a new standard of comparison is created, the trolls come out from under their bridges to celebrate. Who’s got the most achievement points on your server? You’ll know soon enough. As an example of the chicanery that might result from the new system, consider the case of a certain infamous druid on Vek’nilash, who I’ll call Stinkleaf. This person was a highly ranked arena player, and he made sure everyone knew it! When Stinkleaf got Season 3 shoulders, he spammed Trade Channel for days calling himself “The Best in the World.” Every time I would run into him in Ironforge, he would harass me for my obvious adherence to PvE: “OMG wut is dat PvE crap, durids R for arena!” Let’s just say I was really, really happy when this person left the server for an easier battle group. We may see similar things arise in Wrath with achievement point griefing.

3. Alt discrimination

isidora and syd worry about discrimination

I have three characters at 70, all of whom took quite different paths to get there. Marfisa, a paladin, was my main all throughout Vanilla WoW. Sydera has been my main and my only raiding character in BC. Isidora, my delightfully evil affliction warlock, is my farming character. When I look through the achievement panels for all three, it’s really clear which characters have been alts and mains at different times. Any character who has been an alt during any phase of the game will look inexperienced. Sydera was only level 40 when BC hit, and of all the achievements in Classic WoW, she’s really only done the Deadmines. Marfi, however, has credit for most of the 5 man dungeons, all the world exploration, and many of the quest-based feats. Isidora, however, has practically nothing. Since the process of awarding credit for old instances is uneven, she doesn’t even have points for the few dungeons I did take her to. What would happen if I wanted to do what I did when BC came out and switch mains? Isidora has no titles–she hasn’t even been to Karazhan. She would look like a colossal n00b, even though the player behind her has a great deal of raiding experience. The achievement system might, for the upper tier of raiders, lock players into sticking with their longtime mains instead of branching out to try something new. That would sadden me, because alternating among my characters is one of the things that keeps the game new and fresh for me.

4. Roleplaying

I’m no RP expert, but I’m fairly confident that the achievement system will offer RP-ers new conversation-starting tools. In order to start a roleplaying style conversation with a stranger, you have to have something to talk about. Players will learn to inspect the folks they encounter and quickly compare achievements. Anything might spark a conversation; for example, you could say: “Hail, slayer of Van Cleef! What news from Westfall?” As you can see, I’d be a terrible roleplayer, but the potential is there. Any time new information is available about a character, the possibilities for story creation increase.

These are only four possible consequences of the new achievement system, and only time will tell if the changes have long-term good or ill effects. Personally, I can’t wait to see them implemented–for me, the good outweighs the bad. However, if I ever want to raid with a new guild as Isidora, I think I’ll have to bring Syd along for the interview too.

BETA: Well, hello, there!

BETA: Well, hello, there!

So, I went to Undercity to see the new skin for Lady Sylvannas:

WoWScrnShot_082308_121838

While boarding the Zepplin to head back to Northrend, this little convo took place:

Name Removed Convo

I blurred the name, because I didn’t think to ask them if I could use this….. I’ll put it up, edited back in if you let me know that it’s okay.

Totally made my day.

If you’re in beta, feel free to say hello! It’s always nice to meet someone that finds value in what we write here.

Luv,

Wyn

BETA: 10 Achievements that Will Make You Go WTF?

BETA: 10 Achievements that Will Make You Go WTF?

So you’ve heard about the new Achievements in Wrath. They’re designed to help other players recognize you and your accomplishments. Many Achievements are easy to achieve such as winning a PvP match or doing 1000 quests in your time.

But a closer look at some of the other Achievements offered just make me cringe in what’s necessary to be able to accomplish them.

a-origHere is what my Achievements look like so far. I didn’t actually level to 80, but I did max out all of my non-crafting and gathering professions. I didn’t actually do 2000 quests either if you look at the updated statistics below.

The bar at the top shows how many Achievements you have. When you start playing Wrath from your 70 toon, expect to have around 20% of them complete. Actually, I might be wrong in this regard. Anyway, we’ll see when it goes live. I’m not sure how many Achievements most players will have.

I believe the number to the side of the Achievement name is the amount of points it’s worth. I’m not suite sure what those points will be used for.

Now, let’s find out more about our ridiculous and non-essential goals that we will do anyway for the sake of completion!

a5

City Defender

Ah the City Defender. You’re out late at night patrolling the streets of whatever Capital City you call your home. Usually, there aren’t that many assaults or sieges on capital cities unless you’re on a major PvP server. Not only that, but you have to physically land the killing blow? Or does it refer to just honorable kills? I have no idea. Any Horde want to ride into Stormwind on beta so I can take you out?

It’s re-DONK-ulous I tell you.

a6

To All the Squirrels I’ve Loved Before

I shoot them on sight. You know of my reaction to Murlocs. Critters are no less the same way. D.H.E.T.A. will hate me for it. But it’s the only way I can increase my place on the damage meters!

a8

My Sack is Gigantique

If the Achievement title doesn’t make you cringe slightly, then the cost to pick up one of these bad boys will. All you have to do is drop 1200G and you’ll get yourself 10 Achievement points. If you didn’t need bag space before, you won’t need it now.

a7

Well Read

Wow. Just wow. This is the scavenger hunt to end all scavenger hunts. The only book I really ever read was out in Scarlet Monastary about the crusades and all that against the Undead Scourge. 

Seriously, just look at all the reading you have to do. If you do plan on going for this, I salute you.

 

 

 

 

 a9

Master of Arms

I’m Holy. The only weapon skills I can max out are Staves, Maces, Wands, and Knives. I guess Unarmed can be thrown in there, too. Now if I can just find me a mob that won’t die  yet won’t hit hard enough to kill me.

a10 

That’s Gotta Hurt

Actually, this one isn’t so bad. You just need to make sure you’re standing in the right spot so you can sort of clip through the platform. The trick is to break the other team’s will so that they do spawn on the platform and stop trying to fight back so they can get out of there.

a1

We Had It All Along *cough*

Yes, we’ve all pull this off once. Some of the luckier ones managed to do it twice. But now that it’s in the game and winning by a margin of 10 actually matters, I bet it’s going to be one that not many players will be able to pull off easily.

a2 

Resilient Victory

Again, the problem is going to depend on the rest of your team. 500 resources is one hell of a handicap.This means pre made groups will have to sort of “throw the game” at the start before going full tilt later on.

a3 

The Alterac Blitz

No way. It takes 5 minutes to full capture a tower. By going straight down to Drek or Van and the time it takes to navigate the path and dodge Horde or Alliance forces, the timer will almost be over. If anyone has a serious thought or plan to do this, let’s hear it. The only way I can think of is to go straight to the General with both Warmasters up unless you can capture towers within 60 seconds. But even, that’s still a lot of time.

a4 

Damage Control

I’ve been able to accomplish this one myself with no problem. If you’re a Shaman, Chain Lightning as often as you can. If you’re a Priest, stay Holy and spam the heck out of everyone around you. Just make sure you hide and park yourself in a not-so-obvious spot.

Now that we’ve gone through some of the teeth grinding Achievements that can be done, I turn the hat over to you. What other nigh-impossible Achievements can you come up with? You’re free to use any aspect of Classic, TBC, or Wrath. What about Class specific Achievements? Is there any challenges that Priests or other individual healers can engage in?

BETA: The Adventures of Wynicus

BETA: The Adventures of Wynicus

WoWScrnShot_081708_230907 

I took Wyn on a guided tour of Northrend. You might not recognize this, but we’re on a giant turtle.

Quote of the night?

“No Matt, you’re not flagged for PvP. Honest.”

BETA: The Dawning of the Death of Downranking

BETA: The Dawning of the Death of Downranking


Image courtesy of deboer

A blue post has yielded valuable information that will change the way we heal:

This is not a bug.

In the latest WotLK beta push, we made a large change to the mana cost of spells.

All player spells now cost a percentage of base mana rather than a fixed cost. Base mana is a special value determined by the player’s level and class, regardless of any effects or items that increase intellect. It is the size of a player’s mana pool if the player has zero intellect.

This change was made primarily to prevent downranking, as it’s a technique that was never quite intended. Rather than continue to find ways to penalize players for casting low-rank spells, we decided to essentially make doing so obsolete. If rank 5 and rank 6 of a spell cost the same amount of mana, but rank 6 does more damage/healing, then there is no reason to consider casting rank 5.

So, each spell line (eg. Frostbolt, Shadowbolt, Greater Heal, Rejuvenation, etc.) has a fixed percentage of base mana that it costs for most of its ranks. That means each time a player gains a level the cost will go up some. The percentages were picked to attempt to keep the costs relatively similar to what they are currently in World of Warcraft. For most spells, that percentage will drop some when the player receives their highest-rank spell in existing Burning Crusade content. This was done to better fit the existing cost curve, and to keep the mana cost for level 70 players as close as possible to existing costs. Level 70 characters will see most of their maximum rank spells change in cost slightly up or down, but not by significant amounts.

We anticipate there being some balance concerns due to this change, and our development staff will be ready to implement new spells, abilities, or talents to resolve those issues as the testing process continues.

Zarhym

Old and busted

In the past, downranking our heals served primarily as a way for Priests to maintain mana as much as possible. Why spend almost 500 mana to cast a Flash Heal when a rank 2 Greater Heal that costs 210 mana does the same? Okay, sure, I stretched the cost slightly, but not by much. But I trust you get the idea.

Between downranking, chain-potting, trinkets, talents, spells, and other abilities, getting mana back was like tapping into the oil sands in Alberta for gas. There’d be enough to fuel one person for a long time.

The new hotness

Your max rank spell now costs more than a down ranked spell. My max rank Greater Heal cost me ~750 mana and all of my downrank spells cost ~860. The big question going into the expansion right now is how mana regeneration will function in raids. Chain potting has been nerfed big time with that debuff (although the debuff itself no longer appears, I’ve heard scattered reports that the debuff itself is present. It just doesn’t show up on the buff bar. Downranking now removes another form for casters and healers to conserve mana.

So what’s left?

  • Trinkets
  • Abilities
  • Gear
  • Tuned encounters

Trinkets, talents and abilities are simple no brainers. Gear is going to be jaw droppingly and fist pumpingly awesome. I’m anticipating about 110 spirit and 150 intellect on level 80 epic items. That will help increase our ability to regenerate mana yes. To counteract this effect, our spell prices will also increase once we’re at level 80.

I suspect raid compositions and raid specs will shift slightly from a DPS optimization build towards raid mana endurance. An example would be bringing classes that can help restore mana (Shamans, Druids, Shadow Priests, etc).

The last thing now is to ensure that the encounters in the game are at a bar high enough to present a challenge and low enough that it can be reached by the dedicated and the few (at least early on before it understandably becomes nerfed).

We are now at the mercy of Blizzard.

Halfway through level 71. My new job is keeping me busy on the weekdays. I cannot blog, raid, beta, and work at the same time! Need to max out time management skill to 300!