Welcome to Part 2 of the Patch 6.0 Patch Notes. I decided to split the information up into two posts to make it easier to digest. Part 1 was posted a few days ago and covered General Changes, Button Bloat, Buffs and Debuffs and Class Changes. Part two will cover Racial Traits, Glyphs, Level 100 Talents and Perks. Part 2 covers Racial Traits, Glyphs, Level 100 Talents and Perks.
Disclaimer – These are notes are in alpha testing and are subject to change. Do not take them as fact or apply them to current game mechanics. Every time you use these out of context Blizzard kills a kitten AND a puppy.
I’m just going to look at the races that can be Druids. Racil information was released a little while ago but I have not given my thoughts on it and it was mentioned again in his round of patch notes. The racials are not very exciting but they have done a good job at balancing them between the factions from a PVE standpoint.
No changes planned for the Worgen.
* Quickness now also increases movement speed by 2% in addition to increasing Dodge chance by 2%.
* Touch of Elune is a new passive ability which increases Haste by 1% at night, and Critical Strike chance by 1% during the day.
The change to Quickness is a straight buff – extra stats? Yes please! The question is, will it stack with other movement speed increases? I have a feeling that Feral’s are going to be the fastest moving class in Warlords. Assuming everything stacks as it does currently; Feline Swiftness + Cat Form + boot enchant = 155%, plus this new racial (+2%), plus the Enhanced Cat Form Perk (+5%), plus the Monk’s new Stance of the Fierce Tiger (+10%), we could be looking at 172% passively. Then add Dash, Stampeding Roar, Darkflight and Engineering on top of that. No one will catch us.
Touch of Elune has met some criticism. Some people are claiming that this racial will require raids to change their schedule to take advantage of it. Will some raids change their times? Possibly some high ends guilds, but even then the logistics of changing the raid times of an established guild of 20-30 players to fit a few small number of players seems ludicrous. Will it have an impact? No where near as much as playing better will have and it will depend on which classes benefit from them.
Having the 1% crit or 1% haste is no different to having a flat 2% bonus of a stat. The 1% is such a small different that any drawbacks could be offset by playing better for 99% of the player base. It is also less of an issue since haste caps are being removed.
* Brawn is a new racial passive ability that increases Critical Strike bonus damage and healing done by 2%.
* Endurance now increases Stamina by an amount scaling with character level, instead of increasing Base Health by 5%.
Nothing to really say here. Just some changes to level the playing field and adjusting for the removal of base stats.
* Berserking now increases Haste by 15% (down from 20%)
* Beast Slaying now increases XP earned from killing Beasts by 20%, instead of increasing damage dealt versus Beasts by 5%.
* Dead Eye has been removed (was 1% Expertise with ranged weapons).
A slight nerf to Berserking to bring it inline with the other racials. The changes to Beast Slaying are interesting. Changing it to an XP bonus is much better because most of the population is not at max level – Blizz has stated this in the past – thus impacting on the most players. This is much better design than a spell that is useless most of the time and extremely powerful in rare circumstances. Given that the level cap is only going to increase, the effectiveness / desirability of the racial and other spells that affect experience gain is going increase as well, not just for new players, but for existing players when new expansions come out and for alts.
A new selection of glyphs have been unveiled. I’ve only listed the Feral and neutral glyphs here.
Glyph of Ursol’s Defense – Increases your armor in Bear Form by an additional 210%.
Ursol’s defense was originally believed to be a Guardian glyph. However Celestalon clarified on Twitter that it is only available to Feral, Resto and Balance. This is very interesting. On the Team Waffle Resto roundtable there was discussion about players missing the defensiveness that Bear Form used to offer – under fire go Bear for a while. When Feral got split into two specs and the introduction of active mitigation, Bear Form for the non-Guardian specs lost a lot of its passive defensive capability. This looks like an attempt to bring that back. Barkskin also had two new defensive glyphs added to it so this should make the Resto community a bit happier.
Glyph of the Ninth Life – Reduces all damage taken while in Cat Form by 10%.
Ten percent free damage reduction? Yes please. This glyph is very much needed. As I mentioned above the non-Guardian specs lost an important defensive tactic. This plus the changes to Survival Instincts will improve our survivability dramatically. However at this point the Glyph of Cat Form is unchanged meaning that it plus this will most likely be mandatory given the changes to healing (more triage focus, more time spent not at full health), which is disappointing. I was hoping for some real choice in my glyphs this time around.
Glyph of Maim – Increases the damage done by Maim by 100%.
Not too sure what to make of this change. I think it may be more of a PVP change as in PVE you can just take Might Bash and not have to sacrifice dps.
Glyph of the Shapemender – Each time you activate a shapeshift form, you are healed for 5% of your maximum health.
Another PVP focused glyph.
Glyph of Travel – Travel Form grants an additional 60% movement speed, but can no longer be used while in combat. This effect is disabled in battlegrounds and arenas and cannot be combined with other temporary speed bonuses.
The “This effect is disabled in battlegrounds” just kills this glyph for me. Luckily I already have my Ironman achievement. That said it would have been too OP if left unchecked.
Glyph of Savagery – Now grants a free 5 combo point Savage Roar when leaving Prowl, instead of allowing Savage Roar to be used with 0 combo points.
There is some debate over on the Fluid Druid Forums about whether this glyph would buff your first attack out of stealth. The point of the glyph is to help stop doing stupid things to get Savage Roar up before combat. There is a general consensus that it will buff the first attack and if it doesn’t at first, it will be changed to do so. Personally I don’t see why they had to change the glyph. Making the old glyph baseline would have been a better solution. With the change the glyph is only usable once per fight (assuming no changes to Incarnation) while the current glyph can be used on demand. It would be interesting to hear the design decisions behind this change.
Also a small selection of glyphs is now learned automatically while leveling. I have only listed the Feral glyphs.
At level 25, the following Glyphs are automatically learned by characters of the appropriate class:
- Entangling Roots, Fae Silence, Ferocious Bite, Maul, Omens, Cat Form.
At level 50, the following Glyphs are automatically learned by characters of the appropriate class:
- Might of Ursoc, Nature’s Grasp, Rebirth, Rejuvenation, Savagery.
At level 75, the following Glyphs are automatically learned by characters of the appropriate class:
- Dash, Faerie Fire, Healing Touch, Master Shapeshifter.
Good for new players, not so good for scribes. However as we saw in Mists of Pandaria inscription has been given other craftable items to supplement income from glyphs such as shoulder enchants and weapons. However, with fewer items requiring enchants in Warlords we can’t confidently say that shoulder enchants will still exist.
Lunar Inspiration (Feral) – Moonfire is now usable while in Cat Form, generates 1 combo point, deals damage based on attack power, and costs 30 energy.
Potentially a forth dot to manage. It is interesting that it can be used at ranged which helps with target swapping. A tweet from @Celestalon answered some questions we still had about the talent; Moonfire will be affected by melee crit rates as there will no difference between melee/ranged/spell crits in 6.0 and crits will trigger Primal Fury granting two combo points.
Bloody Thrash (Feral) – Thrash now also applies the Rake bleed effect to all damaged enemies and awards 1 combo point if it strikes your current combo target.
I think Thrash was given to Feral’s originally as an AOE attack. But some people much smarter than I realised that if you used on Omen of Clarity procs or at times of high energy, it was a single target dps gain. As gear got better we can now hard cast it and get decently high up times. A talent that applies both Thrash and Rake will just replace Rake in our rotation. As Scyms’ says on the Fluid Druid Forums;
“Bloody Thrash seems way too strong in the current state of the game. Insane cleave potential, and we could even replace Rake by Thrash on single target (50 energy Thrash+Rake vs. 35 energy Rake). Though, if this proves to be better on single target we’ll be energy starved A LOT early on (Mangle gone, Thrash instead of Rake, stats at xpac start)”.
Savagery (Feral) – Savage Roar is now passive.
Originally was not very good for PVE because you would get less Predatory Swiftness procs for Dream of Cenarius. But now that DoC has been changed it may be more appealing for some people. It means that we will be generating combo points faster than we can spend them on Rip, which would mean more Ferocious Bites. Currently this wouldn’t do much as FB is underpowered and requires energy in addition to combo points to do its maximum damage. However FB is getting buffed as one of the Feral Perks in Warlords so once again, we will have to wait and see. Some people are critical of the talent because they feel it removes game play instead of contributing to it. Maybe, but I see it as more of a “beginner” talent as it reduces the amount of things to track – which given the default UI, would be good for a new player.
Level 91-99 perks, to be granted to the character in a random order upon leveling.
- Enhanced Berserk – Your maximum energy is increased by 50 while Berserk is active.
Help with energy capping. Good change.
- Enhanced Cat Form – Your movement speed in Cat Form is increased by an additional 5%.
As I mentioned previously, will this stack with other speed increases? Potentially 159% passive movement speed from Feline Swiftness (15%) + Cat Form (25%) + Enhanced Cat Form Perk (+5%).
- Enhanced Tiger’s Fury – Increases the duration of Tiger’s Fury by 2 sec.
Buffs, yes please. Also gives us more time to get a buffed Rip / Rake up.
- Enhanced Prowl – Removes the movement speed penalty from Prowl.
I think this might replace the current Glyph of Prowl which is good if we are going to be opening from Stealth due to the buff to Pounce and the new Glyph of Savage Roar which gives us a 5 CP duration Savage Roar after leaving Prowl.
- Improved Shred – Your Shred deals 20% additional damage.
More buffs. We don’t know if Shred will still get the 20% when used on a bleeding target, but I think this perk “replaces” that.
- Improved Pounce – Your Pounce deals 100% additional damage.
- Improved Ferocious Bite – Your Ferocious Bite deals 20% additional damage.
- Enhanced Rejuvenation – You can cast Rejuvenation while in Bear Form or Cat Form.
More survivability. I think this, along with the changes to Survival Instincts are to help offset the loss of defensive capability from Symbiosis. Since we are not a GCD locked spec and the new healing model in Warlords letting players spend time not a max health, we could spend some time healing ourselves and even splashing some Rejuv’s around the raid.
- Improved Healing Touch – Increases the healing done by your Healing Touch by 20%.
More buffs, but I think this is a replacement from the 20% we got from DoC.
The whole perks thing feels like a red herring to take the light away from the fact they aren’t getting anything new. The idea that you get them randomly is to make each players leveling experience unique.
HOLY INFORMATION DUMP BATMAN! That was a lot of information, and there is more to come. I am a little disappointed that we have a spell removed and didn’t get a new one. Be sure to check out Part 1 of the notes if you haven’t already.
What are your thoughts on all of these new changes? Did you like Symbiosis? Will you be changing race? If you are a scribe do you think you will be missing out on a gold making opportunity? Let me know what you think.