And so I have returned from the perilous north where bears and cellphones roam. Despite my best efforts the only time I could find any WiFi was standing outside a tchotchke shop on the main drag of North Conway, so rather than having a chance to post I just consumed as much 3.2 information as I could bring up on my tiny iPod screen. It was fun though coming home to the hecticness of all I needed to do with the new patch, like regemming/speccing, the new engineering toys, etc. More on that later.
Firstly, notice anything different?
Hellz yes, I got my Titanguard. Figures it happens the week a new tier of content came out, but que sera sera. We kind of just threw together an Uld25 this weekend just to do FL and maybe Razorscale and XT (aka the easy bosses) and wouldn’t you know it that little beaut’ dropped.
Side note: the XT encounter was changed, although I’m not entirely sure why. When was the last time Blizz upped the difficulty of an obsolete encounter? For those who haven’t tried XT since the patch, you can’t use the “tank between two piles” strategy anymore, because you can only cut off spawns from one pile now (and only by tanking XT right on top of that pile). Moreover, a lot more adds spawn now, with more bomb bots as well. Ranged needs to stay on their toes and use the bomb bots to dispatch the scrap bots pronto. It’s slightly harder now, but that also may have been because we were gimping the fight to begin with with some… er… creative uses of game mechanics.
Speaking of dungeons, I haven’t had the pleasure of trying Coliseum yet but I hear the first encounter is a lot of fun. In the meantime I’ve been getting my fill of the Tournament by endlessly running the new 5man. The normal version has a very sezzy trinket, the Black Heart, which is just awesome because it has an EH proc. Even better, I don’t have to worry about putting epic gems in my Monarch Crab.
(Sorry, another side note: I hate the proc animation of the Black Heart. It looks like someone just cast BoP on you. When I first saw this proc on another tank I freaked out thinking I accidentally threw a BoP on them and was in the process of wiping the group. This definitely needs a fix!)
Other great items to look for in the 5man heroic are the Peacekeeper Blade and the Mark of the Relentless. Both make up for their 219 iLevel by having a gem slot which makes them strong EH items with a Solid MZ socketed.
With the release of epic gems I’m definitely going to be shifting around some pieces to maximize my stamina and ride the defense minimum on a razor’s edge. I’m thinking of swapping back in the T8.5 gloves, putting the mind control tinker on my helm, and then nabbing the Mark of the Relentless from TOC if I have enough defense to swing all this edge-of-my-pants nonsense.
I’m very excited about the Engineering changes that came with this patch. Jeeves is an awesome toy and was a lot of fun to put together considering all the crazy robots you assemble it out of, not the mention the horribly frustrating several hour grind to get the schematic. Well worth it though to have on-the-hour access to my bank. Also great is the new auctioneer in Like Clockwork in Dal, which saves me the trouble of logging on a bank alt to hit the AH, and the Wormhole Generator which (along with the Crusader’s Tabard) means I’ll never have to sit on a zeppelin to Northrend again.
Lastly, a few quick impressions of the changes to Pally tanking that came with this patch:
- I dislike not having Exorcism handy as a pulling tool. I used to use to with Hand of Reckoning for those two-mobs-surrounding-a-door pulls where I’d Ex one then Reck the other, then when they got next to each other follow up with a shield toss. Now it’s more like Reck to pull (since you do more damage if the mob isn’t targeting you) then shield toss as a follow up. Less initial threat is a bummer.
- Vindication is an awesome, awesome change and I really enjoy having my own version of Demoralizing Shout. It’s a little slice of homogeny pie I can get behind.
- I need to get over my bias of turning down a piece of gear if it has expertise on it, and my revulsion at parry. Both aren’t terrible anymore, and it’s actually conducive to decent threat to be soft capped for expertise now. I definitely recommend grabbing the SoV/C glyph.
- And of course, how can I not mention our new second cooldown, Ardent Defender. I’ve seen this beauty pop a few more times than I care to admit, but it’s a nice reminder that a bad situation was nearly prevented. I’m also relishing the DK tank constantly calling me OP. Crow, it’s what’s for dinner.
I have a whole list of topics written down of what I want to go over this week, so look for lots of further dissections of various changes from 3.2.