08 January 2009

3.0.8 updates from 7 January

Previous 3.0.8 posts:

No sooner do I post some news, then we see more arrive later that day! 3.0.8 is shaping up to be a fairly significant patch — no new content or huge changes, but a whole host of minor changes that add up to a lot.

Let's see, where to start? How about level 16? You'll now be able to train Aquatic Form from the trainers, rather than running the quest line. I get why they're doing this; the quest line takes a good bit of time due to a lot of travel. Still, it's a bit sad; the druid form quests really add to the flavor of the class. It's unclear whether the quest line will still be available or not.

For more substantive issues, the first thing to note is that it's now confirmed that Nourish will now benefit if a Wild Growth HoT is present on the target. This will increase Nourish's viability as a raid healing tool.

A bigger buff for Nourish is that it will now be affected by the second-tier Balance talent Moonglow, reducing its mana cost by 3/6/9%. Moonglow is a common talent to take in Resto builds, if you build up to Nature's Grace and Nature's Splendor. So this will be an instant buff to Nourish for many Resto druids. I'm starting to find a lot of use for Nourish, and these buffs will pump it up even more. Now, if we could just get a Nourish glyph...!

In items, the set bonus for the Deadly Gladiator's Refuge has changed. The old benefit was a .2 second cast time reduction on Regrowth; the new benefit is to reduce the cooldown on Swiftmend by 2 seconds. The Deadly Gladiator gear all requires high arena ratings (though they'll be reduced by 100 with the patch); you'll need an 1750 rating to get even one piece, and a minimum of 1950 to get the four-piece bonus. I'm more likely to become a GM than to get a 2000+ arena rating, but I wish you luck!

The two-piece bonus on the Tier 7 Heroes' Dreamwalker Regalia (10-man) and Valorous Dreamwalker Regalia (25-man) are changing. The old bonus reduced your Rejuvenation cost by 5%, but that's changed to reducing the mana cost of Lifebloom instead. Rejuv fans will see this as a nerf, but Lifebloom is such a staple that this should be a buff for most of us.

Here's a bug fix that's a bit of a stealth nerf:
[Idol of the Emerald Queen]: This idol was providing greater healing than implied by its tooltip. It has been reduced to correct value.
Ouch! If you read the comments on the [Idol of Lush Moss], people have tested it and found that it provides only a small benefit over the Idol of the Emerald Queen. The assumption was that the Lush Moss idol was bugged, but it turns out we've had an overpowered idol ever since regular Slabs.

There are a lot of profession changes piling up. I've focused mostly on Leatherworking, but if you chose something else, take a look and see what's new. For example, miners will find that it only takes one whack to extract all the ore from a node. Also, the passive benefit Toughness will now affect your stamina rather than directly adding health. That will be a big help if you have buffs that leverage stamina, like Blessing of Kings.

But the big change for leatherworkers is another nerf:
The epic leg armor patches now require a [Frozen Orb] in addition to their other materials.
This means [Frosthide Leg Armor] and [Icescale Leg Armor] just got a lot more expensive to make.

My advice is to make as many of these as you can before 3.0.8 hits, but hold on to them; the AH price will probably rise. If you use them yourself, you might want to make a handful and hang on to them. They are also the easiest and cheapest way to level leatherworking from 430 to 440, so if you plan to do that, do it sooner rather than later!

Those are the biggest changes for caster druids in the latest batch. I'll post more as they arrive!

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