With the rush of new class info for Cataclysm dripping down from the mouthpieces of Blizz there were a lot of interesting, kind-of-meh, and “different” battle plans revealed, but I have to say the one thing bumming me out more than anything else is this little tidbit:
Tree of Life is changing from a passive talent to a cooldown-based talent, similar to Metamorphosis. Mechanically, it feels unfair for a druid to have to give up so much offense and utility in order to be just as good at healing as the other classes who are not asked to make that trade. We are exploring the exact benefit the druid gets from Tree of Life. It could strictly be better healing, or it could be that each heal behaves slightly different. You also will not be able to be banished in Tree of Life form (this will probably be true of Metamorphosis as well). Additionally, we would like to update the Tree of Life model so that it feels more exciting when you do decide to go into that form. Our feeling is that druids rarely actually get to show off their armor, so it would be nice to have at least one spec that looked like a night elf or tauren (and soon troll or worgen) for most of the time.
I love tree form. Absolutely love it. I love its goofy expressions and hilarious emotes. Jumping around as a freakin’ TREE is the whole reason I picked my druid to be my healing toon in the first place (that and he was a tribute of sorts to old friends that no longer play WoW who were also charmingly bark-covered in-game). I have many other toons I could play if I wanted to look at a character in “caster form” – the different appearances are part of what make druids so unique and fun. I mean there could have been more variety in the tree form – different-colored leaves based on hair color, or something like that, or at least a difference between Alliance and Horde versions – but to scrap the form altogether and turn it into a lame cooldown is pretty disappointing… so much so that I may retire the resto side of my druid entirely and embrace the boomchicken within.
Guess I’ll have to go fraps myself dancing in tree form before it’s too late!
In other musings on the cata changes, I’m mostly “meh” about the rogue info – it seems more PVP-orientated with not much to chew on in regards to PVE. I mean I can see SMOKE BOOOMB having its uses but it’s not going to go into my dps rotation. Redirect will be kind of cool, but again, not going to help much on single-target DPS races. Blizz wasn’t very clear on how exactly they were going to chuck all the “passive damage bonuses” from our talent trees (does this mean HfB will be interesting again?) so I guess I’ll have to wait and see what they replace all those holes in the talent trees with.
My shadowpriest is going to like the shadow balls of doom, though, I can already tell…