Dilemmas, Part 2

As mentioned in the last few posts, on top of everything else I have to decide on what class I’m actually going to play. While there is usually some kind of shake-up with expansions, I feel like Legion is fairly unprecedented in its complete overhaul of everything, top to bottom. How does one even decide what class to play anymore?

Just like you might expect, my own method is slow, methodical, over-examination.

I started with my namesake paladin, Azuriel. Clicked some talents, moved some hotbars around, and found myself rather appalled at the ability pruning. Retribution wasn’t especially complicated before, but this feels even more Fischer Price than ever. Two builders, one spender, one debuff to combo with spender, and… one cooldown? Looking at the other melee specs, it seems many were hacked to the roots as well, but at least they typically have self-buffs or DoTs or something. I was no fan of Inquisition, sure, but damn. At least give us Hammer of Wrath back.

Shadow priest was interesting. At first, I was not especially interested in the build-and-burn rotation, especially given how weak Mind Flay feels as a filler. The residual haste buff after popping Insanity feels cool, but again, that mostly feels like it’s used on faster Mind Flay ticks. Once I started fighting the invasion mobs though, things started falling into place more – can’t really use Shadow Word: Death on training dummies. Plus, strategically using Dispersion to prolong Voidform and thus get more stacks/wait for other cooldowns is an interesting twist.

I then tried all three flavors of warlock. I honestly have no idea what Blizzard is thinking with Affliction. This might be another training dummy situation, but only passively getting Soul Shards and needing to wait to toss an Unstable Affliction just feels bad. Plus, what the hell is up with that Artifact? Two of Affliction’s “elite” powers trigger on death… which is fantastic for raid bosses, I imagine. Conversely, Demonology felt butter-smooth. Granted, it feels weird when basically half of your casts only serve to buff your demons, but everything about all the buttons feel really satisfying. I only played Destruction for a moment, but was not especially impressed.

Next was the druid. I’m thinking that a druid character is probably the best to use one of my two level 90/100 boosts on, should I decide to create a character on another server, primarily out of practicality concerns, e.g. cover all the class role bases. Feral seems as goofy as ever with the complexity. Balance though… wow. I skipped the entire Sun/Moon pendulum game design period, so I was a little intimidated going in. The current system though, wasn’t bad; I could get used to that.

Death Knights were high on my list of possible new mains, but now I’m not sure. Unholy is supposedly one of the strongest specs at the moment, but I did not like it much at all as I played through the invasions. Part of that might have been the whole melee deal, considering how many times I died to random cleave damage. Turning Scourge Strike into a ranged attack helped somewhat, but I still don’t quite like the Festering Wound mechanic in general. Perhaps it’s not much different than combo points or Holy Power in the abstract. I did not give Frost a chance, so I might end liking that instead.

I played my rogue for about a minute. In that time period, I was very impressed with Outlaw, less so with Assassination. I have no real idea what to make of Subtlety. I plan on coming back to this class to investigate further.

Enhancement shaman was probably the most pleasant surprise of my entire time trying out classes. I enjoyed it before when leveling a few expansions ago, minus the need to drop Flametongue/etc totems all over the place. Now? It looks – and more crucially, sounds – badass. All the buttons feel substantial to press, and the cadence just flows. Definitely will be giving this one a closer look as well. I didn’t end up trying Elemental simply because I did not have a weapon to use it with.

Mage was hit or miss. Arcane was meh. Technically a lot of specs have a conserve/burn phase built into their rotation, but it just feels bad when you hit 4 Arcane stacks without proccing Arcane Missiles. Fire, though, is a different story. I know that Hot Streak has been a thing for a while now, but there is something deeply satisfying about Fire Blast being off the GCD and castable while casting other things. Perhaps it’s because it harkens to Frost’s good ole Shatter combo. Incidentally, I did not get a chance to try out Frost.

And that wrapped up my testing for the past few days. I have a level 80 hunter, 96 warrior, and 21 monk, but declined to even get them to the training dummies. I might try the hunter later on, although I’m not usually a fan of them outside of BGs. The monk and warrior might not get a second look though, given how flooded the market is for melee this expansion. Again, I doubt I end up going raiding in any real capacity for Legion, but I would hate to change my mind later and be rebuffed.

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Posted on August 26, 2016, in WoW and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Personally I think outlaw is the most fun spec in the game at the moment. Windwalker is also in a really good place now, and I’m loving playing elemental on my shaman (though I hadn’t played it before the patch, so I can’t compare to how it used to be).

    Mages are still uniformly dull, in my view, and warlocks just got ooked in the dooker on every possible level.

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  2. Ret Paladin isn’t fun. It has a purpose – but just isn’t really fun to play. Went right back to Prot and its a blast. 2 ranged DD’s, one of which has a chance to reset the timer of another with a talent choice, makes the invasions doable if you just want to tag mobs on the run. And of course Consecration is great for that too. Now if only a shield would drop for me : /

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  3. i don’t get the praise for Outlaw Rogues. The fantasy is there (and great), but the gameplay doesn’t appear to be any better than Combat before it. Plus, the RNG nature of Roll the Bones and the lack of another finisher to maintain really annoys me.

    To me, Feral Druid is far better than any of the Rogue specs. It has everything I want (single target, AOE, survivability). Plus, alternate specs provide altogether different roles for me to master.

    I love Fire Mage though I am a pretty bad ranged DPS. I love the mobility with base Scorch while moving, FB and Combustion off global, and Icy Floes for Fireball casts. It is depressing when your streak runs cold though.

    I like Fury Warrior okay. It is mostly a priority system, but I am enjoying it well enough. I hate the lack of cooldowns or survability though. My only real sustain is Bloodthirst and a cooldown to buff it. Meh!

    I am still not certain what I want to play though.

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  4. Something you may have missed about Affliction’s artifact: it will periodically spawn a weak ghost add that is phased to you, so you can Controll when to proc the in-depth abilities, even during a boss fight. It might not change your opinion, but the design isn’t completely brainless.

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  5. Well, if you complain about Retpal being too easy you cannot complain that feral is too complex! You should just roll feral and play it. BTW feral is not a class, the talent choices change the gameplay so much that it’s almost 3 classes :)

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