donderdag 29 mei 2014

New gameplay form Boomk's... not again....

Now, to be honest, in th time I played Moonkin, the gameplay didn't change that much. Of course there where some spells lost (like Insect Swarm) and some spells added, but the gameplay didn't change much. You had this eclipse bar which moved left/right when casting either Starfire or Wrath. And now Blizzard seems to be changing that.

On other characters I already know how that feels. Going from TBC to WotLK, the complete gameplay of tankadins was changed. Most notably going from Spellpower to Strength gear. There where also a gazillion spellchanges. Going into Cataclysm they added Holy Power, which was one of the main reasons I actually stopped playing Paladin for a while.

I also had a lot of problems with hunters after they lost mana, and gained focus. You get so used to a certain gameplay, that heavy changes really hurt your joy when playing a character. I still have troubles using all the bigger cooldowns on my hunters, they have a lot of them.

Last week, Blizzard released the new Alpha patch notes, with lots of changes for the Moonkin. If you want to read them, go Google it, or visit the patchnotes somehwere. I am not going into a lengthy rant about them. What I did have was a gut-feeling that I don't like them. There is something amiss it seems, and it took me 5 days to actually find what I didn't like.

The problem is two-fold. The first one is that all DoT's will become 'fluid'. At this moment DoT's are 'snapshotting' the stats when being cast, and keep that for their whole duration. In WoD, the DoT's will look at your stats everytime they tick..... except the Moonkins eclipse-bonus, that is still a snapshot. Which means you still want to cast Moonfire/Sunfire at the highest amount of eclipse possible.

The other factor is the new eclipse-bar. At this moment it is moved by casting spells, in WoD it will move automatically on a 30 second interval. That means you no longer have control over the eclipsebar, it just keeps moving while you are in combat. And there is the problem, your spells have the biggest oomph when eclipse is high, same as now, so what's the problem? Well let's look at the start of (almost) every fight I do (It starts around 1 sec before pull);

Pot-Starfall-Wrath (to hit lunar)-Sunfire-Treant-Moonfire-4 time Starfire-Starfall-Starfire-Celestial Alignment-Moonfire-Starfirex3-Starfall-Treants in between, and always Starsurging and...  now the problem is movement here. If I have to move in that first 45 seconds of the fight, it will be a huge dps-loss.

 Luckily most fight have a fairly static beginning, but now imagine having a big cool down every 15 seconds...that activates automatically, and you have only a 4.5 second window to cast the big spells. That's how I see the new eclipse-system. If for whatever reason you have to move during that top-eclipse-phase, you will loose a lot of dps.

Now, we don't know what kind off fights we will have in WoD, they may be more static then now, but the fact that RNG can heavily influence boomkin-dps seems silly. And that's I see the system....  which may not be implemented. Maybe it will actually work..  but we need to wait for that.

vrijdag 23 mei 2014

Interface and Addons (Blog Azeroth)

This dualweeks shared topic on Blog Azeroth is Interface and addons. Now I do have alot of addons, and they are all downloadable from Curse. But which addons do I use?  Well, first up, here's a screenshot of Lorinthe in an LFR.

A lot of things look different here then in a normal UI, but one of the most profound things to notice is the bottom-centre. There are 12 buttons larger, comparing to the rest. This is because I actually do not use the keyboard for raiding, but a Belkin N52TE gamepad. And because of the layout, and how my owns hands work, I use 11 hot keys, and the joystick on the side for movement.
I know it has a lot more functions, but I normally don't seem to need them. Because I use this, all my alts have the same basic layout, using Bartender, I also made 2 12-blocks both side of the centreblock for cooldowns, buffs, and other frequently used spells, while the big strings that go to both corners are mostly for mounts/professions and other stuff.

Now looking at a Mardah-screenshot, you immediately see the similarities, but because Mardah is my main raiding character, there are some things better positioned, and some more addons. Still the centre-block, with all the mainspells stays the same.

List of addons I see during raids.
  • Skada (Top left)
    • Damage meter, but also more important a where-did-I-die-from-section.
  •  Deadly Boss Mobs (Middle left and center)
    • Boss timers and cooldowns, sometimes the only thing I see.....
  • Bartender (Lower-screen)
    • More shuffling around with bars then the original one.
  • X-perl (raidframes and character-info-blocs)
    • Mainly because I like it more that my own info is closer to the center, and under my feet.
  • Affdot-Druid (above char-bloc)
    • Reminder to recast Moon/Sunfire if there's a huge difference in power (like here for Moonfire)
  • Weakauras (above char-bloc)
    • Various cooldowntimers that are important, so i don't have to find them in the mess near the map. Some are not shown at the moment, because they are Buff-Duration-timers.
  • Balance Power Tracker (under character-bloc)
    • Replacement of the default, this one is set to the new eclipse state the moment I play a spell.

Now if you look closely, all the important information for me is centered, and a little bit under my feet (depends on zoom-factor). This way I can both see my own health, which button to push, boss-cooldowns, and whatever is happening under my feet.

The other info, like Skada, rest of raid,chat and debuffs on me are more away from the centre. I do look at them, but more like every 10 seconds. It's information I don't need to know all the time.  Important buffs I can extrapolate from the Affdot timers, and boss-stuff is always warned in DBM. The big Gap under the boss-info-bloc is used by my petclasses. Their targets and toolbars are there. It's also the place for my ExtraActionButton1

I also like the fact that both left and right is rather free of stuff, so I can see what's coming from that side.

As you can see above, my Gwaednerth-raid-UI has a lot less info, but there's another thing. If you look closely around the map, you see more buttons then normal. There are also the Addons I dont use during Bossfights, so here is that list;
  • Althoholic
    • Well..  it's very easy to loose stuff with all those alts I Have.
  • Atlasloot
    • Besides the handy what-does-the-boss-drop-list, it has many more lists.
  • NPC-scan
    • Most of the time turned off. I do sometimes go on a rare-hunt.
  • Auctioneer
    • Easier use of the Auction House, but I don't use all the options.
  • Decursive
    • In case I go healing
  • Enchantrix
    • Because I always forget which dust/ink is going to appear.
  • Healbot
    • See decursive, fun part, this actually puts a second raidlist on my screen (Right-lower)
  • Postal
    • Easier use of the postboxes (open all)
The main-layout of my UI hasn't been changed much since I got the Belkin, and was tanking Malygos, way back when that was current content. That's about five years ago??  So this UI really works for me. Some little changes will be made when Warlords of Draenor comes around, I'll probably loose the Dot-timer (Dot's will become fluid), and I may try the default raidframes. But as long as I have the belkin, the general layout will not change much.

And for fun, my layout during 2008. Gwaednerth (then Gowron) tanking Leotheras the Blind;

maandag 19 mei 2014

Raiding on the other side

Yes, so far my vacation, and other things. And a lot of things have happened last month. More news from alpha, and more news from alpha, and more news...wait.. ALPHA, where is the freaking Beta??

But, for myself, the most important news is that Argent Dawn is now completely Alliance for me. Somehwere last month my last two Horde Characters left Single Abstract Noun, and went to the Sha'Tar. SAN has been dead for a while, and with the absence of Rasout, I really lost any reason to log in there. So, I transferred both Gowron and Luaran of to that Sha'Tar guild I joined a few months ago.

Beyond Redemption Friday-Flex team

Luaran was Lucky enough to keep her name, Gowron had to be changed. A part of me was sad about that. The name was with me for more than 7 years, but no longer for this paladin character. His new name is Gwaednerth, wich is Welsh for blood-strength. Don't ask me how to pronounce it though, and in beyond redemption the name G-man has already been opted.

Why is the pronounciation important?  Well, I have joined Beyond Redemptions Friday-Flex. Actually, they just started that, but I couldn't attend the first run. The next two I did join, and it is fun. Do mind, that most characters are undergeared, or at flex-gear. And we even have some people raiding for the first time...and there's a mumble-account.

The Mumble is strange. In Innovation we don't use something like that, all things are discussed in /raid or /instance... or one of the other dedicated channels. One of the reasons is that everyone is in raidchannel, as with the 2 flexruns, not everyone was in Mumble... but at least I experience the laughter when people try to pronounce Gwaednerth.

This Horde-expedition does not interfere with my Alliance raiding. But I do wish that new 20 man-raids would be introduced tomorrow. Especially with the late release of Warlords of Draenor, now estimated after Blizzcon, people stop playing, and go on a break. I think we have 15 people on a break now....

Oh, yeah, I mentioned AD being completely Alliance now. So, the two new faces to my army of alts are Doiral, Draenai Monk  (different one then the one I played for Alt:Appreciation) and Jinnowhaen, Dwarf Death Knight, to finish off all the classes. One of these two will be boosted, and at the moment I am betting it will be the Death Knight. Doiral is running up the levels at the moment.