Blizzcon review: Part six

Ah, Blizzcon. Yes, Blizzcon.

Ah, Blizzcon. Yes, Blizzcon.

Plenty of itty-bitty things left over from Blizzcon to chew on today, but they’re by no means all bone and gristle – in fact, we have plenty of tender, juicy gossip, fresh and ready to nourish ourselves with.

One announced change which surprised me a little bit was the proposed simplification of the character stats – we’re going to lose all of these:

  • No more Attack Power on gear. It will come from Strength or Agility instead, depending on your class.
  • Stamina is going to be more equal no matter what sort of armor you have, so clothies won’t be left behind in terms of health.
  • Armour Penetration is gone, which is good, because I never understood it anyway.
  • Defense is gone – tanks will get defense-capped from talents, like Feral Druids are already. This is good, but now tanks have no real Hit Rating equivalent, which I like the idea of.
  • Block Value is disappearing too, but blocks will apparently now mitigate a percentage of damage instead.
  • No more Spell Power – it now comes from Intellect.
  • MP5 is gone. Spirit is now the only stat which will regenerate mana, so MP5 is out of the window.
  • Haste will increase your regeneration speed for things like energy or rage. I’m not sure if this applies to mana, but I don’t think so.

Overall though, streamlining the stats is definitely a good thing, I have no doubt. It was getting complicated – us Warlocks especially have to balance and factor in hit rating, spell power, crit, haste, intellect, spirit and, to a lesser extent, stamina. That’s a lot for someone who stands there and casts spells!

Archaeology came as a big shock to many people; I don’t believe anyone expected a new secondary profession. It’s really more of a means to an end however. Basically, by traveling around and researching ruins (I think they mean pre-existing ruins, not new nodes or anything) we will earn artifacts (read: points) towards another new feature called the Path of the Titans…

The Path of the Titans will allow us to choose a Titan cult to affiliate ourselves with once we reach max level (85). Once we choose, we can progress down that path by turning in these research points, or similar, and this will unlock passive abilities and bonuses, sort of similar to talents/glyphs. Allegedly, there won’t be a specific path for each class or spec – it will be entirely the player’s decision as to what they pick. In my opinion, that will last until about ten minutes into Cataclysm when EJ realizes that “x Path is better for Warlocks and y path is better for Shamans”, and so on. Still, it sounds interesting.

One other thing to come out of Blizzcon is the makeover to the talent trees. Right now, players often feel pushed into getting talents which, for example, provide +10% damage and are essentially mandatory. Instead, come Cataclysm, just putting points into a tree will net you the more boring things passively, and leave you free to select the more fun options from the tree itself. I’m liking this change!

Last but not least, Reforging sounds like a handy new addition to the armour crafting professions (tailoring, blacksmithing, leatherworking, etc) which will let these crafters take a portion of a stat away from an item and add it back on as another stat which isn’t already there. For example, take a robe which has 20 Intellect and 15 Stamina on it. A tailor could remove 10 Intellect from the robe, and add on 10 Hit Rating instead, leaving the item with 10 Intellect, 15 Stamina and 10 Hit Rating. Awesome, no?

This concludes my Blizzcon review series – until next time folks!

Vel.

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