Heroic moments

Heroic moments

Last couple days I’ve been talking with a few friends about the heroic or epic feel of the game. This was spurred by the recent Cataclysm class previews. My friend felt that the game was making players too over powered and he feels that what he wants is and I quote

“To have the ever loving shit beaten out of the raid by a boss. Like seriously have Deathwing be so badass he just looks at us and we die.”

I replied with a little snark informing him that he could always level to 60 and turn off xp and raid classic content while it still existed, whatever was left of it.

To me the game is taking a logical step in many ways, I mean let’s take a look at all the things we’ve done in the game (and by we I mean as a collective player base).

  • Defeated an elemental lord
  • Defeated the son and daughter of the aspect of earth and the progenitor of the Black Dragon Flight
  • Defeated and old god and his followers
  • Defeated troll tribal leaders and their god
  • Defeated the Lich Kings floating citadel and his right-hand lich
  • Cleansed the home of Medivh
  • Defeated a Daemon lord
  • Stomped a troll hero into the dirt
  • Defeated a power sucking Prince of the blood elves
  • Defeated Illidan
  • Restored the sunwell while repelling a powerful Eredar
  • Trudged through the snow and ice to set fire the the Lich Kings floating citadel AGAIN!
  • Killed the aspect of magic
  • Beat down ANOTHER god and the servants of titans
  • Slapped around the custodian of the titans
  • and Dethroned an undead king

/breathes

So…  Yeah. Safe to say we’ve done a lot right? but if you look at it it’s been big bads right? So why shouldn’t we feel a little powerful right?

We’ve all had those moments too, where after a boss goes down or a particularly hard fight is won where you want to stand up and thrust your fists in the air and yell in victory. I know it’s just a game, but you can’t help but feel accomplished sometimes. For me it’s those moments of the harrying first kill. My guild’s first Blood Queen (25) kill, there were only two people left standing. Me and the feral druid stood over her corpse amid a sea of raider bodies. It may sound weird but in that moment I felt really good at the kill, being so close to that wipe and trying EVERY trick I had to stay alive / res / keep someone up long enough for the DoTs to tick was heart pounding, and that kill is among the ones I savor the most. I count that as one of my heroic moments in the game, where I felt that this could see this as a scene from a movie or book and wanting to throw my hands up victorious in the air and scream my defiance at this villain that had stood in our way threatening death, and nearly delivering it in full.

In every story I’ve ever read as the main character got more powerful, so did his enemies. We are about to go up against the corrupted aspect of earth. EARTH. That little thing all of Azeroth is comprised of. Safe to assume he’s going to be something of a jerk right? So with all the class changes happening I think it’s in good form that we are starting to feel well…. uber. It fits with the progression of the game.

Also consider that encounters are changing. The way we handle fights now is for the most part pretty linear. Don’t stand in fire, don’t stand in front of the boss, let the tank get aggro etc etc. Even the current mechanics can be boiled down to simplistic measures in many cases. In Cataclysm however the dynamics of each role are changing. The mechanics of each class are changing and this is going to allow developers to make more interesting encounters.

Me, I’m looking forward to Cataclsym and all the changes. I’m looking forward to having to approach different encounters differently. I look forward to feeling like yes I am powerful, but still have a damn good challenge ahead of me. I’m looking for more spells, more encounter mechanics, harder mana regen. I’m looking forward to feeling like the team I belong to earned EVERY kill with sweat blood and perseverance. I don’t think we’re overpowered, I just think we scale with content!

So how about you? How do you feel about the changes coming? Do you think they are over powered? Do you have a heroic moment to share? A well earned kill?

That’s it for today folks, until next time, Happy Healing!

 

What Cataclysm is Doing Right

What Cataclysm is Doing Right

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There is much to do about this upcoming expansion pack, more so then Burning Crusade and I dare say more then Wrath of The Lich King. I say this because of the buzz around the net as well as just what I hear walking around my home town. People are excited, hell I know I am. But I think people are more excited about this expansion then the other two. I’d like to talk about why we might feel this way about Cataclysm.

In Burning Crusade we were excited, don’t get me wrong. We had just bested the Black Dragonflight, saved the world of Azeroth from the terrors of an awakening Old God and his minions and layed the Smack down on a mighty Lich and his floating fortress of evil. We were eager to go and take on the the next threat to our home and take the fight right to it’s doorstep! We dove into Karazhan and drove out the taint infesting it, we took on Magtheridon and cut the head from between his shoulders. We beat the naga champion into pulp and took the fight to Kael’thas and his generals, all leading up to taking down the of the betrayer and then saving the all Azeroth yet again, this time from the evils of a freshly summoned Kil’jaden.

Then Wrath of The Lich King was announced. We would be returning to Azeroth full time, albeit the frozen northlands. We stepped foot into Borean Tundra or the Howling Fjord and were treated with lush, full environments to play with. From the very beginning we were taunted by the Lich King. Every step of the way he was there, messing with us, trying to break our minds and bring us into his influence. When he failed to do so he sent his agents to kill us. We cleared the Grizzly Hills and Fought back the corruption in Dragon Blight, we stomped on the trolls pledged to the lich king in Zul’drak and freed the animal spirits from their chains, We took on the Vyrkul in their homes among the storm peaks while making friends with the Sons of Hodir. We broke into the home of the titans and cleansed the corruption from it’s halls and saved the world yet again from an awakening god. We proved our worth at the foot of the Lich Kings citadel and now await the doors to be breached so we can take on the blight of our lands head first.

Burning Crusade:

Burning Crusade did a couple things right, and a couple things very wrong. It was a good time because it was new content. We got to go play in Karazhan which thrilled most people because it had been sitting there for so long. We got our first glimpse and some interaction with major lore characters. Shamans and paladins got to swap sides and new races were introduced (although I still think blood elves won out compared to us blueberries), and we got one hell of a troll instance (I loved Zul’aman). They also introduced arena style pvp with various formatting for smaller more intimate pvp battles. It even allowed you to battle against your own faction! The visuals of the landscape were wild and colorful and they let us fly around on the backs of our own personal griffins. We even got to go back in time and participate in some amazing key events in Azeroth history ( I still hate you so so much Archimonde!)

But for what they did right there were a few things they did wrong. The terrain didn’t blend very well between zones. Good example would be going from Zangarmarsh to Nagrand, the contrast was incredibly violent. This theme persisted through most of the between zone areas, with the exception truly being between Netherstorm and Blades Edge Mountains. Our major antagonist was Illidan Stormrage. He was supposed to be the architect of all the going ons in outland, and yet we saw or heard very very little from the emo elf. When we finally killed him atop Black Temple, I couldn’t help but feel it was a bit hollow. Also at some point focus seemed to shift from Illidan to Kael’thas a little bit. He was arguably the harder fight of the two, he taunted us more then Illidan did, and then tried to summon a being capable of culling all of Azeroth. Blood Elves flowed pretty well into the horde lineup, but Draenei seemed out of place even with the alliance. I asked around for some thoughts on favorite and least favorite things from burning crusade and here’s what I got in reply:

Favs:

Shattered Halls

Heroic Magisters Terrace

Lore and Burning Legion theme

Flying!

Space Goats!

Caverns of time!

Least Fav:

Heroic Rep Grind

The SSC lift (I hated that damn thing too, might be worse then door boss)

Arena

All of Hellfire Peninsula

Auchenai Crypts (hated that damn bridge)

Wrath of The Lich King:

Wrath has done a lot of things right. First thing off the bat is the interaction between Arthas and the PC’s. From our first steps onto the shores of northrend the Lich King has been there to taunt us. So much so that when I finally drive a mace through his face atop Icecrown I know I’ll dance a jig, and I think many of you will too. We are driven to want to kill him. In this they learned from their mistakes in BC and did great. The zones looked amazing and the flow between them was incredibly well done. It was very natural flow from say Borean Tundra to Dragon Blight. The quests are immersive and the entire expansion is dripping with lore tidbits, questing gives you story and feels much less of a hodge podge grind. Wrath gate event in the game is amazing, even on the 6th time seeing it.  The instances are incredibly well designed and they brought back one of the most awesome but least experienced instance of vanilla WoW back for everyone to enjoy (Looking at you here Naxxramas!) The daily quests seem less of a grind, and they got rid of attunements for raids and heroics which allows players to experience the content without the soul sucking rep grind. A hero class was introduced for the first time! New Technology was introduced in they way of phasing which was showcased in the Death Knight starting zone but is present throughout the world. It also introduced 10 man raids. Which again allowed further access to content among smaller guilds. Along with these came hard mode encounters and refined vehicle combat. To me this found it’s ultimate purchase in Ulduar, which is a beautiful and wonderfully designed raid zone, and almost ties for first place with me for favorite raid zone (BWL still number 1 in my book) Wrath has done so many things very very right, and very few things wrong. I got some replies to my question earlier to wrath too. here they are.

Favs:

No more attunements or rep for heroics!

Ulduar Hard Modes

Ulduar!

New Pets!

Storyline and Quest integration

Phasing

Least fav:

Sons of Hodir rep grind (pre relic turn in)

Arena

Door boss! (he hates me too =/ )

Quite a difference in lists. Note how short the list of dislikes is. If I missed anything above forgive me, it wasn’t intended to be all inclusive, just sort of a highlight reel.

Lets move on to the upcoming expansion,

Cataclysm

In almost every fantasy novel I’ve ever read, there is a love for home, or a quest to protect home or even the dream of returning home after the adventure is completed. You can see this trend in the Lord of The Rings trilogy, Count of Monte Cristo and various other stories. I point this out because it’s a common theme. This is one of the things Cataclysm is doing right and doing it up front before the game is even released. We are returning home after fighting a grueling war that has taken it’s toll many times over only to find our home ransacked, disheveled and forever changed. Places so familiar to us are being left scarred and broken and lets be honest it gets us riled up. Blizzard is doing something most people never thought they would, in essence they are destroying azeroth, and reshaping it. It is definitely having the desired effect, I could hear it when the game was officially announced at Blizzconm I could hear the whispers around the room and look at all the smiling faces and heads nodding.

We have major lore figures being thrown at us right away, Deathwing not even close to least among them. We see the return of those we thought we had defeated such as Ragnaros coming to burn the world tree in Hyjal and Nefarian back to help his father’s plans along. I also suspect we’ll see Lady Aszhara before too long.

We get to explore areas that have always been enigmas to us such as Uldum (pronounced “Ul-doom” in case  you missed the panel and matt’s report on it) and what lay behind those doors where all those dragonkin came to murder us in Nefarian’s throne room back in the day. We get to travel beneath the Maelstrom and we are promised we’ll be able to fly in the old world now (we get to visit Iron Forges airstrip and the dancing troll village if they are still there!). The gates of the Greymane wall come open and we get to see Gilneas for the first time! I remember sitting in front of the door on my Night Elf hunter when it had the elite furbolg in front of it wondering when I’d get to go play in Gilneas. At this point the tidbits they are releasing feel even more epic then Wrath did. We are fighting to defend our world against a force that was entrusted with it’s safe keeping by the titans themselves. A being so powerful that the earth trembles and ripples with his very power. We are waiting on the edge of our seat to see who lives and who dies in the coming events. As old enemies resurface, alliances are made and the very ground we walk upon is shattered.

In short this expansion is doing what a good novel would do, bringing you back home. In this case though it’s bringing you back home to a place that isn’t the place you remember. By tossing us into this world wide upheaval they are pushing us further into the story. Everyone from RPers to Raiders should be happy with the content that is going to be provided to us. Lore junkies will be turned on their ear and will be foaming at the mouth for more ( I know I already am!). This expansion is setting up with an epic feel to it. Even look at lowering the leveling from another 10 levels to only 5, the emphasis shifts more on content then just leveling. In my opinion that is what they are doing right. They are giving it a feeling of epic grandeur that started with Wrath and seems to have only gotten better over time. I may sound like a fan boy, but as a person who has been reading and writing fantasy stories for a very long time, I’m starting to feel like I’m playing through the events of a book rather than just a game, and that makes me happy and excited to see what’s in store.

So what do you think? What was the best and worst of Burning Crusade? What was the best and worst of Wrath? How do you feel about cataclysm so far? Excited, sad, angry? What are you looking forward to the most?

Until next time,

Sig

Image courtesy of memory-alpha.org

A Burning Crusade Retrospective

A Burning Crusade Retrospective

Ah, the Burning Crusade, how I loved thee. On the eve of the expansion, I think it’s time to take a look back at some of the high points of BC. Mind you, I can only speak for myself, and my personal journey. I’m sure there are players out there–and probably even better players than me–who found their glory days in Classic. However, the expansion was where I, and Syd of course, made the difficult transition from total noob to raider. I’m proud of my progress, but I couldn’t have done it without the support structures that the game itself put in place.

Leveling

Perhaps the most dramatic difference between Classic and BC had to do with the leveling content. Once I stepped through the dark portal, I knew that I had entered an entirely new world (and it had nothing to do with the two moons and the streak of interstellar dust hanging overhead). Quests were conveniently grouped, and most could be done quickly. Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I ought to tell you that I bought the expansion two weeks late, and that when BC was actually released, Syd was only level 40. I probably hit Hellfire three weeks after the crowd, so it truly was an open world and I was able to blaze through.

However, I leveled Syd with the Vanilla WoW mindset. I did every quest in the zone that was appropriate for my level, assuming that in order to get enough XP to level up, I’d have to shift between, say, Hellfire and Zangarmarsh, like players had to do between Alterac, Stranglethorn Vale, and the Badlands. Imagine my surprise when Syd hit 70 after finishing less than half of Nagrand. On the whole, the leveling experience was quick and convenient.

Preparing for Karazhan

The old Karazhan attunement required an extended tour of level 70 dungeons. At minimum, players had to complete a full run of Shadowlabs (minus Murmur if you just couldn’t get him), a partial run of Steamvaults, a partial run of Arcatraz, and full runs of Old Hillsbrad Foothills and Black Morass. For the first few players in a guild to reach 70, runs of Sethekk Halls, Mechanar, and Botanica were needed for the keys to some of these lovely places.

The Karazhan attunement was the first thing I ever did in WoW in a businesslike, logical manner. I had raided a bit at 60, but let’s just say that I didn’t take ZG or MC as seriously as I could have. In order to get myself into Karazhan, I organized groups–who sometimes couldn’t clear the whole instance–and somehow pulled myself through it in greens and a Dreamstate spec. And then, all dimensions were open to me–I could get in the door to Karazhan.

Noob vs. Karazhan

I still remember my first Karazhan raid. It was led by a relatively experienced holy paladin, who shortly thereafter moved on to a raiding guild on another server. I managed to be Karazhan attuned right around the time that the leading players in my casual guild killed Prince for the first time. I started in my guild’s “B-team” Karazhan, and boy, did we deserve that distinction. I had 700 +healing when I walked into Attumen’s room for the first time, most of it “of Healing” greens (and cloth, at that). We did clear Attumen, but Moroes was a disaster. I realized that I needed to go back to the drawing board–way back. Even though I continued to run Kara when I could, I started running level 70 instances and the easiest heroics. I also leveled my tailoring and put myself in the PMC set.

14 Runs of Heroic Mech

Briolante decided that, in order to tank in Karazhan, he was going to need a Sun-Eater. We were clearing at least to chess around this time, and he had decided that the King’s Defender was in fact cursed and was never going to drop (turns out he was right, and it would be another 6 months before he’d see one of those–incidentally, a week before he’d get the Mallet of the Tides off Lurker). The Sun-Eater likewise suffered from the Curse of Tanking Drops, and it took us 14 runs over about 16 days to get the thing. In the process, I became a better healer. Heroic Mech was a little too hard for us in our blues–no one in our typical groups had gotten much out of Karazhan yet. I had to drop tree form to Healing Touch Brio through the Arcane Protectors’ Charged Fist effect, and I had to actively manage my mana to make it through the gauntlet. Pathaleon, who can still give a healer problems with his adds, taught me that NOT healing at the right moment can be just as important as healing. I waited until Pathaleon’s adds were targeting someone else, and then I followed with a Nature’s Swiftness-Healing Touch on Brio. I still usually died during the fight, and if we had a warlock, died more than once. However, we did get that Sun-Eater, Boots of the Pious for me, and a lot of primal nethers. I still have two nethers in my bank from those runs, because I never needed to roll on any after that.

Guild Master Syd

Right after Brio ended up with the Sun-Eater, our casual guild got dropped into my lap. Most of our best players had departed, and I was left with a motley assortment of some good and some mediocre players. I’m still not sure why I volunteered to lead them, but I remember agonizing over what to do with a casual guild who could reliably kill Prince Malchezzar but not go beyond. We ended up merging with our friends from another guild, forming Collateral Damage. The merger plans were successful beyond my wildest dreams. When we formed up CD, my goal was just to see the inside of Hyjal. Below, you’ll find Brio and me completing that goal. We’re chilling in Hyjal. . . but wearing our T6 while doing it.

Progression

When Collateral Damage started SSC, I was a total noob. So were most other people! The one thing that was unique about what we did was that we coached each other, with the most experienced leading the way, and the guild as a whole really taught casuals to raid. Most successful raiding guilds start out with a corps of players who already know how to raid; in contrast, we had to build from the ground up. During SSC, we were all reading up like mad on our class mechanics and on the fights. Looking back, I have to say that SSC was a really well-designed instance, much better than, say, TK, where we didn’t spend quite as much of our time. Each fight in SSC formed a piece of the raiding skills primer. Sure, they are all relatively easy, but the basic lessons carried over even into Sunwell. Lurker and, to a greater extent, Vashj, taught players to move out of the bad stuff. Hydross taught us the finer points of not pulling aggro at the wrong time. Morogrim introduced us to dealing with adds AND a hard-hitting boss at once, and with some healers incapacitated at that. Karathress really tested our ability to perform specific assignments, and Leotheras taught us to multitask. There’s a reason I still love SSC.

Once Vashj died, CD was able to progress smoothly through BT and Hyjal in a lot less weeks than it took us to conquer T5. Attunements got removed between our kills of Vashj and Kael, and the badge gear we were able to access gave us a gear buffer that let us clear the end bosses of SSC and TK less times than guilds that went through earlier would have had to. We were–and still are, really–great at progression but laughably bad at farming. Somehow the excitement just isn’t there, and our players tend to be really sloppy once we’ve killed something once. This is the one flaw of CD that I hope to correct for the expansion. I want fast, fun, efficient, happy clears of farm content.

Tier 6

And there we were, in Tier 6. And, I have to say, it didn’t disappoint. While most of the fights of Hyjal and BT were less difficult than Vashj and Kael, many of them are unique and interesting. Of course, I didn’t love the Hyjal trash, but we progressed so quickly in there that we only rarely had to re-clear it. If there had been trash before Archimonde, well, I would have written some nasty letters. Regarding BT, I like to think of it as Karazhan Part II with more inventive boss fights. To my mind, the best-designed fights of Karazhan are Shade of Aran and Netherspite. I love fights that get raiders thinking outside the box. In that vein, Teron Gorefiend, Reliquary of Souls, and Illidan himself are very enjoyable bosses to learn and master. I think my least favorite encounter in the dungeon is Bloodboil, as it’s so insistent on AoE healing, and at the time, I couldn’t do that. But I do enjoy hopping in the water to take my Bloodboil on schedule.

Quel’Danas and the Sunwell

I have to applaud Blizzard for the mechanisms they used to introduce the isle of Quel’Danas and the Sunwell. The progressive reveal created a very real sense of excitement and anticipation. I was eager to do my part to unlock the Badge Vendor, and I took Syd and two alts through the QD quests almost daily. I loved the sense of a server-wide effort. In addition, QD became the place to see and be seen, and I liked running into raiders from other guilds out in the world. As for the Sunwell, I have to admit that it was never part of my ambitions for CD. I knew we didn’t have time to get there ahead of the 3.0 patch. We did, however, kill Archimonde and Illidan in their original form. Going into Sunwell now just for fun, I realize that it’s a different place. We killed Kalecgos and Brutallus easily, and they’re not meant to be simple fights. However, I appreciate the beauty and grace of the instance–it’s nice to see a dungeon that isn’t gloomy, but rather permeated with light and beautiful colors. And hey, Felmyst is still hard–we haven’t killed her yet. I think we’ll continue to work on it just so we see the bosses and get that Kil-Jaeden achievement–even if we have to do it at 80.

Patch 3.0

Maybe I just didn’t care much, but when patch 2.0 hit, nothing changed for me. I continued to play my sometimes holy, sometimes ret paladin the same way I always did. However, 3.0 was something I anticipated, read about, and alternately wished for and dreaded. I have been obsessively following the continuing blue posts in the class and raid role forums, and I have to say, I’m a little disappointed. I like the level of communication players are getting, especially from Ghostcrawler, but I’m getting the feeling that the expansion is being rushed out before it’s actually ready. Sure, the content is all there, but class balance is a mess. And that, my friends, is a shame. I, for one, don’t think I should be worried about a major nerf at this point, as it looks like, with no more time to test or gather data, a 6-second cooldown will be applied to Circle of Healing and Wild Growth. Now, I do have to say, that of possible nerfs, the cooldown menaces Wild Growth the least, but it does leave me wondering what I’m supposed to be casting in a raid, now that Lifebloom is more or less off the table as well. But I digress. This little anecdote was meant to illustrate my sneaking suspicion that Wrath isn’t really ready for retail yet. This change, and others, make me think that the end-game has actually been designed to be too easy, and that they are scrambling to nerf healers or other strong classes to slow players down.

The Last Days of Waiting

We’re down to the wire now, so to speak. I actually spent some of my usual play time writing this article. Aside from a little EZ-mode raiding, it’s hard to play right now with any enthusiasm. Somehow, waiting for Thursday becomes a little more difficult when I interact with others who are doing the same thing. And what will I, and Syd, be like in the expansion? Will I build on my successes, or should I enshrine my T6 jersey as my greatest in-game accomplishment? The answer? I don’t really know yet.

Wrath Content Patch Spells Doom for Raiding

Wrath Content Patch Spells Doom for Raiding

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This is a guest post by fellow guild and Enhancement Shaman all star Aylii who has become worried by the recent announcement of the pre-Wrath content patch and what it could mean to current end game raiding.

A few hours ago, Eyonix posted that the pre-Wrath content patch will be released in the coming weeks, which means that Wrath is just around the corner.

Like in the pre-Burning Crusade content patch, we will get to experience many of the new changes that will be coming to wrath a bit early, without needing the new expansion (Inscription to 375 anyone?). However, there is one flaw in the release that has me worried, and that is the new class spells and talents.

So far in Wrath, we as bloggers have read and kept track of the many changes to our respecting classes in the coming days. From the addition of many AOE healing spells, the change in mana regeneration and it’s respective talents, the warrior dreaming of duel wielding his two-handers, we have watched it all. There is one darkness that looms over all of these changes, and it mostly revolves around something many of us do casually or hardcore:

We love to raid.

Many class mechanics in Wrath were drastically changed to handle the encounters for the future. Crushing blows were removed. Intense need for mana regeneration destroyed. Changes in how we attack and defend. All of this tuned for Malygos and Arthas.

Yet it is released now, when we are still killing bosses who will preform crushing blows, still begging for blessing of salvation because we know we will pull, still chugging our mana potions. The sad thing is, there is most likely nothing we will do to stop it. For, after all, the pre-BC bosses were never changed, so why should the post-BC bosses be changed for wrath?

Crushing Blows

When I read about these changes, the first thing that popped into my mind was, “Gridlock is never going to get his Warglaive now.” The reasoning, Illidan will become undoable with the changes to talents. In the new content patch, Shield Block will be changed to a 40 second cooldown with Improved Shieldblock. Your Warrior will be crushed if he saves his shield blocks for shear. Sure, you can use a paladin to tank Illidan, but then the flame tanks will be crushed. I’d hate to imagine Sunwell guilds trying Brutallus now.

Threat

Every boss in BC is tuned to have threat control. In the content patch, we will be losing the main ways we reduce threat, Salvation and Tranquil Air. The talents will be still there, but until tanks (mostly warriors and druids) get some new gear from Northrend, they will not be able to keep up threat, unless they tank in Arena Gear. Goodbye Reliquary of Souls.

Itemization

So far I know of three classes (specs) who are getting major itemization changes: shaman, druid, and warrior. The smart enhancement shaman currently wears leather gear, which will leave them weaker after the patch due to the new stat bonuses they get (1 ap per str, agi, int). Similarly, protection warriors, who focus on block value and stamina, will be unable to keep threat because none of their gear has strength. Blizzard has stated that they will make the transistion easier for classes such as these, but gear only accounts for one of the problems.

These are the highlights of Eyonix’s post, but it is just that, highlights. There are other things in the content patch that we might see that can kill raiding, such as:

Potions

Potions. Potions. Potions.

We love them, we need them, we crave them. Soon we will be without them. Currently, in Wrath, if you drink a potion, you get potion sickness, which makes you unable to take another potion. Current bosses are tuned to make us chug mana pots, and even with three classes now supplying mana, I fear the changes will not be enough until we hit Wrath itemized gear.

Downranking

If the downranking nerf makes it into the content patch, kiss your healers goodbye. As I write this now, there is currently no alternative to healing people up besides using the max rank heal, which means more mana, which means out of mana healers who have to sit on their butts and watch their aggro loving dps and tanks die. I sincerely hope that Blizzard does not include this in the content patch, ot better yet, unnerf the nerf!
Whatever Blizzard does, I hope they do something about this. Myself, and many other raiders, still wish to raid before Wrath.

Source: Eyonix Post

Now it’s your turn. Do you think raiding will become even more difficult? Would this alarming change add even more pressure to your Guild to start knocking out bosses and seeing more of end game?