Archive for October, 2009

Question of the Week: How to fix us?

by on Oct.29, 2009, under General

Question MarkThere’s been a lot of discussion in the blogosphere and forums in regards to how to fix balance druids.  One of the “band-aids” suggested is to change [spell]Celestial Focus[/spell] and change the haste to another stat.  This would allow haste gear to have more value to us (as the soft cap before your Wraths got below 1sec would go up).  What do you think of this?  What would you suggest instead?  I would like to see us have some more crit talents, personally.  I know a lot of people don’t value crit like they do haste, but I know personally I can see rather large increase in my DPS if I have focus magic, and a huge decrease in damage if we do not have improved scorch/improved shadowbolt on the boss.

Leave your ideas in the comments!



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Race Change now available

by on Oct.27, 2009, under General

Race Changes are now available!  Congratulations Druids!



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Gripe of the Week #6: Broken Talent Tree

by on Oct.27, 2009, under Gripe of the Week

Ghostcrawler posted the following about Nature’s Grace:

I agree Nature’s Grace is a big part of the problem here. We changed Gift of the Earth Mother for pretty similar reasons. However, Nature’s Grace is a Really Big Deal. We honestly keep talking about changing it, but we’re also paranoid about screwing it up because Balance dps is dependent on it. NG is probably an overbudget talent, but in this case if we nerfed iit, we’d have to mess with Balance in a lot of other areas to compensate. We’ll almost certainly do it at some point, but I worry about messing with it for 3.3.

I’m glad he finally realizes something the rest of the community has been complaining about for a long time.  A lot of our DPS is situated around one or two talents (Nature’s Grace and Eclipse), and they have no short term method of ever fixing it.  Now if he could only admit that Eclipse is broken.



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3.3 Balance Changes

by on Oct.24, 2009, under General

Finally a few 3.3 balance changes, although they’re mainly for PvP.

  • Force of Nature: Health on the treants has been increased.

Who knows if this will compensate for the change to AoE avoidance that pets lost.  This could affect PvE but it’ll be marginal in comparison to the PvP affects.

Also, a nerf to Typhoon (in PVP), and for us assholes who enjoy flying outside Krasus Landing and typhooning people to their death…

  • Knockbacks no longer dismount players. If on a flying mount, you will be knocked back a short distance before being able to resume flying.

Am I the only one who’s rather bothered by the fact that they haven’t addressed balance PvE viability at all in 3.3?



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Finally, Anub’arak.

by on Oct.20, 2009, under General

After my second week in Seriously Casual, they allowed me in on their Anub’arak kill.  I’ll post some strats on it shortly, and hopefully sometime soon a video.  Notice, like most other balance druids, my DPS is bottom of the barrel.  (They had me Hurricane the adds.)

WoWScrnShot_102009_220119



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Blog Update

by on Oct.20, 2009, under General

I wanted to take a brief minute to welcome all of the new readers to Sunfyre’s Nest. Due to a recent feature in The Daily Druid, as well as on MMO Champion, our readership has jumped dramatically over the last two days. (As I write this at 7:30 AM, we’ve had more reader then we had all day on Friday).

I wanted to give a brief synopsis of things I have planned over the next few weeks:

  • ToC/TotGC raid videos from a moonkin POV.  This may take a few weeks, as I’ve recently joined Seriously Casual and I don’t want to challenge my FPS/raid awareness during applicant status.
  • Site theme re-design:  While I’m happy with the overall theme, I’m working with excellent druid artist Andrige to craft a unique logo for Sunfyre’s Nest, and will be incorporating it in to break up the current “wall of text” feel, as well as lighten up the ‘dark’ atmosphere a bit.

If you’re a fan of the blog, or have comments/critiques/suggestions, please feel free to leave a comment or email me at sunfyre@owlkin.org.  You can also subscribe via RSS to get all the posts delivered right to your inbox.



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Response to Reader Questions

by on Oct.19, 2009, under Reader Questions

I just had a reader email me with some questions regarding TotC/TotGC, and I’d like to take the time to answer them and help him and possibly others out.  These are just my opinions and I’m betting others can give their input as well.

Wanted to say that I’ve been reading your blog regularly and quite enjoy it.  :)   I’m a recent conversion to moonkin after a full career of resto, and I really appreciate the tips I’m picking up.


I wondered if you’d consider a blog entry about some moonkin specific questions w/r to Tot(G)C.  If not, maybe you’d just e-mail me your thoughts on these questions.


1.  Northrend Beasts.  What’s the best thing to do when Icehowl is stunned?  Does this change if there is heroism?
I try to pop cooldowns when Icehowl is stunned.  I starfall and throw treants.  I generally don’t waste time with GCDs putting DoTs up, I just try to proc Lunar Eclipse ASAP and drop a few Starfire crits on him.


2.  Jarraxus.  I always seem to be on the wrong side and have to run for the adds.  Is there certain positioning that is better here?
I’ve always done the “Star Method” on Jaraxxus.  If you look at the floor below you, you’ll see there’s a star.  We stack our ranged in clumps of two at each of the points around the star.  Unless the mistress decides to book after someone who’s running away from legion flames, you should always have range on her.


3.  Val’kyr.  If not on soaker duty, do you actively pursue orbs?  Or just dps and let them come to you?
I don’t actively pursue them unless they’re a few steps away.  I do actively dodge the opposite color orbs though. ;)


4.  Anub.  What’s the best way to keep dps up during P2?  I’ve been doting scarabs as they emerge, and aoeing them once they are gathered, but my dps is still weak (relative to the raid).
Don’t know what to tell you regarding your DPS being weak.  It probably will stay that way, unless they change our mechanics.  I still like direct damaging Anub’arak during phase 1 instead of AoE, because our AoE on 5 targets isn’t that strong and it consumes a lot of mana.  I believe us staying directly on Anub’arak *is* important though.  If you look at DPS charts of damage done to Anub’arak, you should be in the top 1-2.  It’s important to keep enough damage in him to get him into phase 3 after two kite phases.  As for DPS during phase 2, I generally make up some chart space in phase 2 by finishing off the burrowers at the beginning, then staying on the scarabs.  I don’t bother much with AoE, just pick them off as they pop up.


Thanks for your time.  :)



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Question of the Week: World Events/Violet Drake

by on Oct.18, 2009, under General

Question MarkAm I the only one who severely lost interest in doing the world events required for [achievement]2144[/achievement], once I got my first 310% mount?  I like achievement points, but I guess I’m not big enough of an achievement whore to put myself through the pain and misery of the holiday achievements.

What about you?



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Gripe of the Week #5: GearScore

by on Oct.18, 2009, under Gripe of the Week

You’ve probably heard of GearScore already, but it was something new to me when I transferred to Sargeras.  It had never really been used much on Area 52.  This whole phenomena around GearScore amazes me.  If you’re not familiar, GearScore examines your gear and assigns a rating value to it, and when you mouse-over a player you get a summation of the gear score, similar to WoW Heroes and a few other websites out there.  This has been the new de-facto “go to” add on for running PUGs, and PUG leaders tend to treat it as gospel.

To give you an example, my druid (which I’d say is decently well geared) rates at about a 5260 gear score in balance gear.  (And I’m penalized for having lower item level trinkets, even though both the [item]Illustration of the Dragon Soul[/item] and [item]Eye of the Broodmother[/item] are better then many trinkets at a much higher item level.

Ironically, my resto set gives me a higher gear score by about 100.  Using the gearscore ideology, I must be a better resto druid then a balance druid!  GearScore also doesn’t see any difference between PVP gear and PVE gear, allowing many people to ‘slip in’ to raids by wearing PVP gear for the invite, then putting their lower rated PVE gear on once they start.

I think all of us here know that gear doesn’t make a player.  Unfortunately, most PUGs now don’t see that.  My hunter, after a /played of 1 day and 6 hours, already has a GearScore of over 4800.  (Mainly due to a couple lucky ToC 25 and Ulduar 25 runs).  That’s a higher gearscore then most players who don’t raid ToC 25 consistently, yet I will be the first to attest that I know hardly anything about hunters, and I can barely get the rotation down right.

Anyways I’m beginning to soapbox here, but tell me if you guys have ran into GearScore at all and what your opinions are of it.  Personally, I’d rather take someone who’s under-geared but has the knowledge of the encounter (ie, an alt of a guildie) over someone who’s well geared but no clue what they’re doing.  (Because gear’s so hard to get now, right?)  I beginning to think, however, that this mentality is not shared with most of the world.



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Additional 3.3 PTR Changes

by on Oct.16, 2009, under General

A few more Druid changes have occurred for 3.3, although they don’t necessarily directly affect balance play.

  • [spell]Rebirth[/spell] cooldown lowered to 10 minutes.
  • [spell]Rejuvenation[/spell] returned to 15 seconds. (They removed the PTR nerf)
  • All players in a raid may mark targets.

I’m still holding out hope that they’ll add some more balance druid changes.



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