Here we are, day two of 6.0.2 and it’s a whole different ball game.
Last night I logged in and immediately began disabling addons, performing the delicate dance between placating an angry Bugsack and keeping my UI with some semblance of familiarity. Finally I was able to triage out the addons I could live without and find some hard-to-find upgrades for others, and I was ready to go.
I then proceeded with the second-most important step in my checklist: hitting the barber shop.
As you can see my priorities are clearly in the correct order.
Anyway, you can see the result of the new character models on Rhidach just above. He looks pretty badass with his beard and his armor — which seems much bulkier with the new models, but this might be an “Onyxia breathes more” situation. (I’d be remiss to say though that I don’t still miss my elf-Rhidach, but what can you do?)
The to-do list
Once I was done playing lite-brite and dress-up with my character, I figured I’d might take a crack at actually playing the game.
- I moved around some abilities to account for the new priority, so that they appear in the correct order in combat. I also monkeyed with my keybinds a little. Blinding Light used to be SHIFT+F, but since I won’t be talenting for that ability anytime soon, I gave that much-more-comfortable keybind to Holy Wrath.
- I retalented, dropping Eternal Flame, Divine Purpose, and Holy Prism, and nabbed Sacred Shield, Sanctified Wrath, and Light’s Hammer in their places.
- I reglyphed and picked up Glyph of Final Wrath. I’m keeping Alabaster Shield, but for the last slot I’ll just swap Focused Shield/Divine Protection/whatever depending on the fight.
- Regemming! Yesterday I cut way more gems than I am happy to admit. I’m still not 100% happy with my gemming (and, more generally, my stats). I assumed I’d have more Haste after logging into 6.0.2 for the first time, but I was wrong and stuck at 35%. I eventually tried to split the difference between Haste and Mastery (which sims are showing as the stronger option) and went with just about all Keen Vermilion Onyxs. Unfortunately my Haste is down to 25% and I can’t help but feel I should just suck it up and go straight Mastery. I’m going to wait and see how raid tonight goes before I commit any further to one direction or the other.
Wait, that’s it?
I ended up doing the “Iron Invasion” stuff which was disappointingly short. They couldn’t have thrown in some world bosses or something to make the event feel more perilous/interesting/social?
Also from a tactical standpoint, I don’t know if I agree with Stormwind putting their army on boats, shipping them all the way around the Cape of Stranglethorn, and dropping them off on the beach. I understand that the Blasted Lands entrance is a bottleneck, but in a sense, so isn’t a navy (and a floating, flammable bottleneck at that)? Wouldn’t it work better to just march in force straight across to the Blasted Lands and clear out all resistance along the way? Then again, I guess the Shattered Beach allows for a pincer maneuver from the north AND the east, so that’s handy.
I don’t know. What the hell do I know about tactics?
Where was I going with this? Right, the whole mess going on in that zone felt pretty pointless. After being trapped on the Timeless Isle for about 3 years, I assumed that all content going forward would be like that model. So it was weird to have just two tiny quest hubs to work through and then the big reward is a pet and an achievement. It’s very anticlimactic when you consider previous pre-expansion events which were so much more involved.
Stretching my legs
I ended up queueing for the updated Upper Blackrock Spire with a friend and I was thoroughly underwhelmed. Of course I’m a raid-geared tank, and the geared better than what the content had to offer, so no matter what it wasn’t going to feel particularly onerous. Regardless, it was weird to get used to the 6.0.2 changes. Even though there wasn’t a lot that was different from the day before, what was missing was very noticeable.
For example, on one particular boss I wanted to push some DPS but I realized that without Avenging Wrath and not being specced into Holy Avenger I didn’t really have any damage cooldowns I could make use of. It made me feel weaker that I didn’t have the chance to put my damage into overdrive temporarily. That’s a hole in the kit that I’m not happy about.
Likewise, on the first boss with the electric nonsense, I imagined the other group members would take care of clicking the generators during the fight. They didn’t and AOE damage started to ramp up beyond what the healer could handle. My very first instinct was “oh, a burst of group-wide AOE magic damage? I have just the thing!” Then I reached for my Devotion Aura keybind and cried as it flooded back that my very last aura was taken away from me. I don’t like feeling diminished in group utility. I feel lessened.
The rotation itself was fine though. I didn’t notice any real hiccups there, and that’s even with moving away from the EF/DP/HP dynamic I’d been using for all of 5.4. I really like Sanctified Wrath and having that additional source of Holy Power, and likewise the talent taking the brakes off of the the runaway truck that is Holy Wrath feels great.
Related to the rotation, what I appreciated beyond words was the lack of Vengeance. I am so, so happy that change was made. It was so nice to have a consistent level of damage output. I haven’t done much “out in the world” soloing yet, so I can’t speak to how my damage is there, but for low-level group content, I didn’t feel weakened at all. I felt stronger in that content, and that was great.
I’m going to hold off speaking to my damage intake, mostly because of the Haste/Mastery discontent expressed above, and because the real test comes tonight when <Business Time> hits SoO for the first time in months. Let’s do this!