Hairline Fracture (Trial of the Champion, PTR 3.2 pt.3)

11 07 2009

The new 5-man dungeon is playable on the PTR. When I say playable, I mean it isn’t playable.  I wrote my feedback in to Blizzard, which I am sure they are literally inundated with currently. Was looking over my Twitter and saw one from @WoWInsider looking for people on Broxigar (I do believe one of the actually players was Michael Sacco). I hopped on quick and decided to lend my healing talents. Sadly, there really wasn’t that much to do for me in the way of healing, ah well.

Oh default Blizzard UI... how long has it been?

Oh default Blizzard UI... how long has it been?

My experience: So we zone in there and we are the arena that you can see from the outside, slightly larger to accommodate the span of battle. Minimap is busted. Equip my lance, mount up. Yes, it is a vehicle fight based around everyone’s favourite: Jousting. Talk to the due in the center and sit back, because you’ll be there for a good minute or two. Each toon is introduced and their respective faction cheers, then the 3 other champions come in and are introduced.

  • Bug #1: One of the champions was targettable and attackable. Killing him would probably bug the instance, or even attacking him can bug the encounter. We tried a few times with him at 10% and at 100%, but both outcomes were the same.

So after everyone is introduced, Tirion will commence the fight. Making sure to keep Defend up as much as possible did little to help, because the opponents hit like semi-trucks. You are able to swap out to another horse.

  • Bug #2: If you die on a horse, you will critically error, DC, or bug the encounter and make everything despawn. If you swap horses at the most inopportune time (being targeted, just being in the zone), you will cause the mobs to despawn.

Once you’ve down the 3 minor adds of the particular faction for each of the factions, the actual boss champions will engage. Once you knock down their HP enough, you have to trample them to stop them from getting to their horses.

  • Bug #3: If you don’t trample down the enemy and they reach a horse, the encounter will bug, enemies will despawn, encounter will reset.

Thanks to all of these bugs, I didn’t get to see past this first encounter. I’ll try again when they’ve retooled it. I’ve no idea how people actually got to see loot from the Black Knight. That was such a horrible experience… now I understand how frustrating the PTR can be. /sigh


Dismantle Me (Tidal Waves in 3.2, PTR pt.2)

7 07 2009

Since Khadgar happens to be down for Super Mega Death Maint today, I decided to hop onto the PTR and screw around with one of my questionable Shaman changes in 3.2, which happens to be the change to Tidal Waves. In good ole live servers, Tidal Waves procs from Chain Heal and Riptide with 2 charges, expended upon cast of Lesser Healing Wave or Healing Wave. Currently it carries a 30% haste to both spells, which makes it awesome for very quick heals (lowers the cast of LHW to around 0.8-0.9 for me). In 3.2 it is only going to haste HW and instead of haste for LHW, it will give a 25% crit boost (proccing Improved Water Shield, Ancestral Awakening, Ancestral Healing).

I’ve noticed that on live servers when casting Riptide and then two quick LHW I sometimes clip the GCD and am left with a “Spell is not ready” error message. Rather annoying.  So with an extremely simple healing setup on the PTR (Grid, Clique, default SCT) I decided to take it for a spin.

On my premade, I’ve got this stat setup (full T8.5, Guiding Star, Pulsing Spellshield, various 226 equipment, Eye of the Broodmother, Pandora’s Plea):



They gave me shit for enchants (resilience enchants on PvE gear? Srsly?) and my meta is garbage. So, here we go. With the current amount of haste on this toon my HW is a 2.08sec cast (with Wrath of Air Totem up), LHW is 1.25sec cast. Tidal Waves proc pushes HW to a 1.46sec cast for around 10k (16k crit) [with Healing Way] and 1044 mana and LHW still at a 1.25sec cast for around 4700 (6700 crit) for 626 mana with a 55.53% chance to crit.

Logged in to my live toon on the PTR to test it out with proper meta and enchants:

Live Epoch.

Live Epoch.

With the Meta gem proc, the mana stealer that is HW seems to diminish quickly. With less haste, HW cast is 2.14sec cast and LHW is 1.28sec cast. Lost around 4% crit, but gained around 120MP5. HW is hitting for around 8.5k and critting for around 13-14k (missing the Healing Way talent on this build). With LHW glyph, LHW is hitting for around 5.5k and critting for around 8.5k. I relaly need to get something like Sif’s Rememberence or Soul of the Dead for one of my trinkets… I’d like to be able to throw mana around willy nilly.

So if HW crits on the 30% chance it will have a total mana cost of around 600 (500 with Totem of Misery, the totem I DEd a while back) 100% of the time, making it heal for around 2-3 times more stronger than LHW for the same cost, but is only that way 1/3 of the times cast. Whereas LHW hits for 2-3 times less than HW but crits 55% of the time with a 60% chance to proc IWS on crit, which lowers its mana cost to around 200. Mind you, I have no glyphs so LHW would be healing for around 20% on ES’d targets.

With this change and the change to Healing Way (giving a flat 25% increase to HW), I see is highly viable to use HW on Tidal Waves procs for MT healing, switching off with LHW during Tidal Waves procs for patching the raid or a bit better mana viability. I’ll have to see how it works out during a raid/instance situation. 2 charges isn’t a lot and I find myself casting LHW without Tidal Wave procs (especially on a 6sec CD with 0.8sec cast LHW). If I need to get a tank up quick, I can see HW being used a bit more often, but it won’t surpass LHW in the spotlight of Shaman healing. It is quick on its own, has a kickass glyph attached to it, and with new Tidal Waves will proc a bunch of awesome stuff.

Currently, LHW is a Shaman’s main heal and even with Tidal Waves as it is, I don’t find it used with HW, but the removal of the haste to LHW is going to be interesting, even if it is replaced with awesome crit. I enjoy the quickness of the heal, but it clips my GCD some of the time. Probably going to have to change my click-cast setup for healing to put HW in a more accessible place. I need to get to know more people on the PTR and actually run stuff. I need moar! Kinda feel like Blizzard is giving us a bit more toolage and pushing us a bit more towards Tank healing. Might as well give us Plate already. 😛

PS: If you are on Broxigar, let me know. I want to get into some stuff.

Ban the Tube Top (PTR 3.2, pt 1)

26 06 2009

I decided to hit up the PTR, both with my toon (for gem analysis and the ability to see more of the JC stuff with my tokens) and a premade Shaman. Here are some pictures from my trip.

Gems are a girl’s best friend

39 SP, nice.

39 SP, nice.

As you can see, the Dragon’s Eyes have received a nice buff. It may only be 7 points, but is still really nice to make up for having to put a lesser Hybrid gem into a blue socket for us Shamans.

4... I thought you were 3?

4... I thought you were 3?

This is a very small buff, but I guess it goes along with the 25% increase to MP5 items, I didn’t realize that extended to gems as well. Shouldn’t really notice an increase, what with all the extra MP5 we are getting.

Ooh, an extra 3sp and 3 Stam.

Ooh, an extra 3sp and 3 Stam.

This is the upgrade from the 9SP, 12Stam Glowing Twilight Opal, this being the Glowing Dreadstone. Oooh, ominous.

I can tank now? Thanks for the Stance Bar!

So with the 3.2 Patch Notes, Shamans were given a little taste of what it is like to have more free GCDs in the form of the Totem Bar. I whipped mine out and slapped it around a little bit in Ironforge. Might not by safe for work.


In ascending order: Call of Fire, Call of Water, Call of Air. Left to right: Earth, Fire, Water, Air, Call of Earth (Totemic Recall).

If you’ve ever used a Totem Management addon, such as Totem Timers, the totems fan out in a similar fashion. Will it be an actual Stance Bar and work with Bartender? Don’t know, Bartender has Stance Bar greyed out for my Shaman. I will have to wait.

Free Gear!

So, with my premade character, they gave me lots of epic gear because I am just that awesome. Pretty much got Tier8.5 for every spec, as well as a bunch of PvP items. Swapped gear around for a bit and got a nice picture of the whole “Shift Click Item comparison”:

ZOMG! Time to get rid of RatingBuster...

ZOMG! Time to get rid of RatingBuster... (Click for better clarity)

There are already addons out, such as RatingBuster or Pawn, that do this already in the tooltip, but not needing to have so many addons installed I guess is the direction of Blizzard (RE: Quest icons on Overworld Map).

Thanks for all the fish!

The only time I will see myself on this mount...

The only time I will see myself on this mount...

Check back for Part 2 in which I haven’t decided what I am going to do! Probably gonna log into my live Shaman and tinker (I bought T9 for 150g, Blizz is making this game too easy) or possibly the premade Druid that I got.