A Quick Note About New Dispel Mechanics

Here’s an example:

Silent Resolve now reduces the chance your helpful spells and damage over time effects will be dispelled by 10/20/30%. (Old – Affected all spells)

Great. What’s that mean?

Your Renew and your Shadow Word: Pain will have a chance of getting a resist when an enemy tries to get rid of it. For example, a Shaman would have a 30% chance of getting his Purge resisted when trying to remove your Renew.

Psychic Scream, on the other hand, should be removed immediately. If I blow my Psychic Scream on an enemy player, and his teammate hits the Cleanse button to remove the fear effect, it will fall off immediately.

What does this mean for PvE players? Probably nothing.

It will affect PvP. You’re better off asking Braids how that will work.

Circle of Healing Redux

As you may or may not have heard, Blizzard is revisiting the idea of bringing in the CoH cooldown. I’m not sure where to start on this or how to begin.

Something that I feel has been overlooked is that there seems to be a feeling that raid instances right now at 70 (post nerf) are representative of what raid instances are like at level 80. A lot of players, right now, are a little overgeared for the content that they’re doing (again, due to the nerf).

Path of least resistance (or effort)

I was first exposed to this idea in my first year of psychology. The general premise here is that people, animals, or even machines will choose the path of least resistance or effort in order to get to their goal. Applying this to healing, we’ll see one person taking a shot for 2000 damage for whatever reason. I myself have been known to tap CoH once or twice to bring that one person’s health back up. Is that a loss of mana efficiency? You bet it is. But efficiency goes out the door if your mana regeneration is able to offset the mana loss within seconds.

Could I have used a Flash Heal? Yeah but it takes casting time.
How about a Renew? Yeah but it takes about 15 seconds for the full duration to kick in
Circle of Healing heals that minor damage extremely quickly and leaves me open for spell options without causing me to wait for the spell to go off or eat a channel or something.

This is partly the case because of current nerfed raid content and the way our spells work. It’s a smart heal, it’s the fastest heal, and it’s brain dead easy. I’m sure we can all agree on that.

With the complete gear reset at 80, I strongly doubt we’re going to be able to get away with non-stop CoH casting. I know I couldn’t. I was extremely limited with my mana regen and my overall mana pool. I confess I did start with PvP gear and I encountered some difficulty then. Yet, after daily Naxx and OS runs on 10s and 25s, I amassed a decent collection of PvE healing gear. I still found it difficult and strenuous. As this was largely a pickup group, maybe I was overcompensating in some areas.

The benefit of Circle of Healing is that it can heal a lot of players really fast.
The cost of Circle of Healing should be the fact that it taxes your mana pool.

I’m not quite sure if that’s possible. I can see why they want to include the 6s cooldown because there are a staggering number of players using it (at 70 and at 80 when I played). Maybe if they included a scaling cost with the spell it would be acceptable. The ability to heal a lot of raid damage really fast is an excellent tool to have. But it should come with a severe price or penalty. I don’t think time, a wonderful resource that it is, should be the case. Perhaps base cost + a percentage of healing done in that one cast? I don’t know. I’m not a game developer.

Regardless of what they do, Priests will easily remain the most diverse class. I’ll continue to play mine well into Wrath. Even if they do bring in the CoH cooldown, we still have Holy Nova and Prayer of Healing. Zusterke, on Plusheal, started some preliminary work on Holy Nova and it’s effectiveness.

By adding the glyph of holy nova, the spell has become quite a powerful healing spell. It is able to output more healing than circle of healing, up to a point where it rivals prayer of healing. The recent mana cost reduction boosted this spell even further where it has become a mana efficient spell, in comparison to the priest’s other AoE spells.

He might shoot me if he feels it’s a little outdated. But not much has changed yet so I think he’s definitely in the ballpark (or ice rink).

Plusheal has more great discussion about this.

Undisputed Method of Earning Damage Control

Undisputed Method of Earning Damage Control

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You can earn the Damage Control achievement by either dishing out 300000 points of damage or healing 300000 points of health. Now you could always just grind AV in the hopes of getting lucky and having the game last long enough.

I think my way is a little easier but no less frustrating. Warsong Gulch will continue to be the undisputed stalemate of BGs for a long time to come even at level 80.

Price of Level 80 PvP Gear and Priestly PvP Goodness [Screenshots!]

Price of Level 80 PvP Gear and Priestly PvP Goodness [Screenshots!]

Relatively slow day today. I’m busy hard at working trying to answer all of the wonderful questions I’ve received in regards to Priests, healing, roles, raiding, gear, mana regen and so forth. I will pack all of this information in an easy to consume format and also produce a TLDR version of it as well. The most anticipated blog post by Matt will arrive on Sunday. :D

For the mean time, I decided to take a break inside Strand of the Ancients (the new BG). Hopefully I can answer a few pre-emptive questions with some screenshots below.

honor-80 bonus-honor

The (tentative) price of Honor gear at level 80. Also displays my raid pimping goodness. As you can see, I’ve ran the 25 mans more than the 10s (Valor is the 25 badge vs the Heroism which is the 10s). Note the amount of honor on the second shot. I believe that takes into account bonus honor from BGs and me killing other players and healing and all that stuff. Also note my pro Killing Blowness. Megan ain’t got nothing on me!

 

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Top: Honor vendors are no longer instanced.

Bottom: shows Horde armada offloading troops. Also shows a valiant Matticus attempting to hold off said invaders. With a Holy Fire.

WoWScrnShot_100308_113635the-line-1 

Top: Me sitting in a passenger seat attempting to overheal a mage because I’m a moron for not de-selecting and activating the auto-self cast. Bottom left health bar shows the health of the vehicle. Contains 3 seats (shown on the far right of the shot). Has 6 speaker setup, all terrain capabilities, GPS tracking, and sports 30 miles to the gallon. ABS needs some work. No iPod support.

Bottom: Screenshot shows the gates being breached. We’re trying to stop the Horde offense from breaking in. We have to hold out for a minute.

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My ancestor, King Matticidus once said the following:

“Give them nothing! But take from them… everything!”

And take from them we did. We held them to a draw. I suspect more honor would be gained if one side won both Offense and Defensive roles.

SYTYCB: The Humble Checklist

SYTYCB: The Humble Checklist

veleda-post

This is Veleda’s SYTYCB week 2 entry.

This post is about lists. Yes, don’t worry, Matt, there’ll be an actual list in here, too. But first, I want to sell you on the virtues of a particular type of list — the checklist.

You’ve got a flying mount, right?

In flight training, pilots have the use of checklists drilled into us from the beginning. It doesn’t matter if you’re a student pilot who has yet to solo, or an airline pilot with thousands of hours logged. Almost any repetitive series of tasks is done with a checklist. You might think that after doing the same sequence every time we fly, we’d be familiar enough with the routine that we wouldn’t need the list to remind us. But it’s that very familiarity that is in some ways the problem!

Huh? What? Where was I?

Flying, like WoW, can have many things interrupting you as you try to do something. Sometimes, you just need to talk to someone else, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s Air Traffic Control on the radio, or the whisper you just got from a friend in game that you need to respond to. You’ve paused your tasks, and when you pick them back up, where were you? You have many memories of doing these tasks previously. But did you just do it?! Have you marked it as complete on the checklist? If so, you’ve done it, and if not, you haven’t.

But… But…

Okay, you say, but WoW is just a game. Why would we need checklists there? Because there are many times we, too, have to go through a number of repetitive tasks, and we sometimes do them when we’re bored or tired or dealing with several other things at the same time. The most useful place in WoW that I’ve found checklists is in post raid restocking.

Are you the weakest link?

I suspect most people have been in a raid when someone has indicated they’re out of some consumable they need to continue to contribute effectively to the raid. Perhaps they want to borrow mana potions from others in the raid. Or, they might need a portal to a city and a summons back, so they can buy some reagents, or ammunition. This interrupts the raid and makes everyone else wait for the person that isn’t prepared, at best. At worst, they might not have noticed the lack until the pull, and have just wiped the raid because they didn’t have something that they needed.

I sleep now?

If, however, you have a checklist of everything you consume during a raid, you can use that to restock right after a raid, so that you’re always ready to go. You might be tempted to wait until just before you’re next scheduled to raid to take care of this, but I’d caution against that. Some consumables might not be available at all times, so it’s better watch for them early. And there are the opportunities that arise unexpectedly. Do your restocking right after a raid, and your character is ready for anything the next time you log in.

Making the list

So, here’s a generic restocking checklist, that you can use to build a list customized to each of your characters.

  • Repair your gear

    It’d be awkward to charge into battle in the future only to have your armour fail you because a strap that was on it’s last legs broke.

  • Replace ammo

    Particularly for hunters, who should always completely refill the largest quiver or ammo pouch they can carry. Other classes that use a ranged weapon to pull, check your ammo level to make sure that will still be useful.

  • Replace reagents

    Many classes need reagents for the abilities they bring to a raid. My shaman only has to deal with Ankhs, but other classes will want various other things for the abilities they’re counted on for while raiding. Figure out how many you might need on a bad night, and set that as the minimum.

  • Buff food

    No matter what you do, there’s probably a food that gives you a buff that helps you do it better. For my hunter, that’s warpburgers or grilled mudfish. For my shaman, it’s golden fishsticks. If you’re a hunter, don’t forget to add Kibler’s Bits, either, to buff your pet.

  • Replenishment food and drink

    Food for health, and drinks for mana, between fights. Many raids will have a mage make a table that provides conjured mana biscuits, but you shouldn’t depend on those. If you find yourself in a raid without mages, have enough to keep you going. Naruu rations are the best way to go, once you have SSO rep for them. Again, hunters also need pet food, to keep their pet happy through the raid.

  • Healing potions

    Sometimes, the healers are busy working on others. If you can use a potion to stave off death until the healers get around to you, that’ll keep you in the fight longer.

  • Bandages

    The biggest bandages you can use, which should be the biggest ones in the game. Same rationale as healing potions, but with a different cooldown timer, so they can be used if you recently used a potion.

  • Mana potions

    If doing your job requires that you have mana, you probably are going to be carrying some of these to help you out when your mana gets low before the end of the fight is in sight.

  • Elixirs and/or Flasks

    Which of these you prefer will depend on your specific needs. Sometimes, it makes sense to use one or two elixirs, and other times, the right flask. Elixirs are generally much cheaper, but they don’t persist through party wipes, so if you’re working new content, they might end up being more expensive than flasks. Make sure you have enough to get through a raid.

  • Weapon buffs

    This can be something that buffs the weapon, such as sharpening stones or poisons, or it can be another way to give you an unrelated buff, such as with superior mana oil.

  • Scrolls

    These can be pricey, but unlike an elixir, you can use a scroll to boost a stat while using a flask. Figure out if any scrolls are worthwhile to you, and make sure you have them stocked.

Checking it twice

vrc

Once you’ve got the list made, find a handy way to go through it after each raid. Ideally, you should have a way of keeping track of where you are on the list. You can print it out, and either check or cross off completed items, or follow while sliding a ruler down the list. You can use a to-do program on your computer to build and check off the lists as you go. I’ve recently taken to using one of the free to-do programs available for the iPhone to go through my restocking lists.

Are we there, yet?

Well, now that you’ve got raid restocking checklists for your characters, you can checklist other things. You might have a ready checklist for any given raid. It’s embarrassing to be on Nightbane’s terrace only to realize that you all left your summoning urns in the bank. Once you’ve harnessed the power of the humble checklist, such moments can be a thing of the past.

WoW Resources for the Wyn

WoW Resources for the Wyn

tools
Image courtesy of woodsy

I’m a tremendous advocate of using all the tools available to evaluate and improve your toon, your gear, and your gameplay. (It’s how I first met Matt!) Hands-down, the most valuable resources for learning to play are other players willing to share their experiences. Even with access to some great minds, though, it helps to know what questions to ask to get the most bang for your buck. Besides that, I’m an information junkie. These are, in no particular order, some of the resources that have helped me the most in my quest for Priestly perfection.

Be.Imba.hu – The first online character auditor. Takes a look at your gear, the available gems, enchants, and add-ons and gives you a solid opinion of what stats are best for you, and what level of content is appropriate. I’ve found it a little cut-and-dry, but a very useful place to start.

GankBang – The armory, comparative. Wanna know how you stack up to the other Priests on your server? Wonder no more. Great tables, which you can organize by stat, show you how you compare. Be aware that you may need to manually update or add players.

warcrafter – The ultimate armory sandbox. Load your character, change enchants, gems, or see what your stats would be if you were in full T6. (Or T3!) Now you can REALLY find out if +6 stats or +15 spirit to chest is a better idea.

Arena Points Calculator – Arena points calculator. Plug in your rating, guesstimate your points. Hooray!

WoW Reputation Calculator – Tells you how much rep you need to hit the next level with any Burning Crusade faction. And tells you how many instance runs it’d take to earn it. This gem has helped that 21000 rep look much, much more manageable, and helped me make decisions of which instance to run for max. rep reward.

Warcraft Realms – Statistic crawler for all realms. If you feel like your faction is hopelessly outnumbered… it just might be. This sucker breaks down all kinds of information – and is especially helpful if you need to know when it’s time to start recruiting from off-server.

WoW Character Watch – Allows you to stalk anyone and everyone. Really great if you want to follow up with an applicant or a former guildie.

Edit: I dunno how I forgot this one, but Mapwow is Google-based maps for WoW. It shows herbalism nodes, mining nodes, and a million other VERY handy things.

WoW Web Stats – Upload your combat log for a bird’s eye-view of what really happened. Have a few different people from the same raid do it for extra well-rounded-ness and you have a hell of a tool for improving not just your own gameplay, but the synergy of the entire raid.

Love forums? Two you should check out are the official Blizzard Priest forums (No, Really!) and Elitist Jerks. (I have another favorite that Matt launched a while ago which you are no doubt already familiar with.)

Here are my favorite threads from the first two:

Lux et Umbra  – The greatest intro-to-priesting guide I’ve ever read. I have stolen so, so, so much from her….

Elitist Jerk’s Holy Raiding Compendium – Required reading for any Priest wanting to raid.

Another great guide written by DwarfPriest – it’s a work in progress, but holy cow, what a piece of work

I left off things like the Armory, WoWhead, Bosskillers, and WoWwiki. If you’re reading World of Matticus, and you DON’T know about those sites, you should’ve spent a little more time getting to know Google.

Luv,
Wyn

P.S. I gotta stop letting Matt write my headlines!

The Golden Rule of Invading Capital Cities

The Golden Rule of Invading Capital Cities

The various factions in the World of Warcraft have their own respective Capital cities. Some of them are easier to breach than others. On some PvP servers, raids are organized almost weekly to storm into an opposing city and take out their leader.

Why would you do that?

Bolvar doesn’t drop any loot, gold or massive honor points. Killing Thrall doesn’t offer you a quest reward or access to Stormwind’s coffers.

So why do these raids happen? Because they just want to have some fun! Sometimes its nice to simply let yourself go and team up with other players to level towns and kill NPCs.

So what’s the golden rule?

When invading a capital city, don’t just bring a raid group. Bring a damn army. See below:

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Horde forces struck early in the evening. We had no warning at all. We returned to Stormwind after a successful win in Alterac Valley when the alarm sounded. The portals were activated and an advance group of Rogues and Druids went ahead to scout what we were up against.

We didn’t hear anything from them since because they lagged out. One by one, I watched their raid frames wink “offline”. An organized and well equipped AV premade should’ve been enough to rout these challengers since we had home field advantage.

Assuming it was only 1 Horde raid.

But there were 3.

When I emerged out from the Mystic Ward, it seemed we were too late. Skeletons littered the bank and the auction house. It seems an advance group came in and caught the city with their pants down and knocked out the 3 auctioneers without hesitation.

Figured that Horde forces would try to pick apart our economy first.

As our counter offensive streamed out of Ironforge, we looked down the road.

For the first time, I was shocked and awed.

Never had so many come to destroy so few.

I tried to throw what Lightning Bolts I could. But 7 second cast times made it impossible for me to do anything. Playing with that many characters around you in an open area was like trying to swim with your hands and feet bound. We could do nothing but watch as they strolled in and headed for the King’s Throne.

With that, the retreat was sounded and those of us with hearthstones available withdrew back to Darnassus. It didn’t take a Gnomish Rocket Scientist to figure out that once they were done with Ironforge, Stormwind would fall next. To even try and raise an army that could come close to challenging a unit of that size would have been inconceivable.

A Note on Joining Guilds on a PvP Server

Join a Guild that loves to PvP even if their focus is raiding. It’s nice to know that when someone in in the guild is being ganked that fire support is but minutes away. It’s one heck of a sight to see 5 players on epic mounts streaking to your corpse and then fanning out around it. Once the culprit’s identified and located, massive firepower is brought to bear until the threat is neutralized.

…But it’s not over.

That’s when they call their friends and their backup. The domino effect continues until one side has had enough.

This is why I love this Guild. If you mess with one, you really mess with all. I guess you could say we’re a PvP Guild disguised as a raiding Guild.

Looking for PvP Elemental Shaman Videos

With the summer here, I wanted to spend some extra time and get better at the Arenas. Last night I signed with a 3v3 team makeup consisting of a Hunter, Priest, and Elemental Shaman (me).

To further increase my chance of success, I respecced to snap up Instant Ghost Wolf an Nature’s Swiftness. This means I don’t get the extra damage nuke of Lightning Overload but my survivability and utility should increase (in theory).

The first 4 games were great. We started working together well and called the traps, the targets, and such. But after that, we dropped the next 5 decisions to bad luck and bad decisions. I know one thing I need to work on myself is to manage my totems better.

But I do want to get better and I learn best by observing and doing. So if anyone knows of any great PvP elemental shaman videos or names of players that I can watch, that would be terrific!

WI: An Introduction to the Art of War (Part 1)

This week’s WI article is up. It’s an introductory post on PvP for Priests that starts with some talents you’ll want to consider picking up along along with the gear, gems, and enchants to go with them.

Next week comes part 2!