Thursday, February 25, 2010

[Druid] Starfall Love

When the 3.3.3 patch notes originally came out I'd noticed there were no changes to druids. I just shrugged and moved on. (And then I saw there were no changes to paladins either, and there still aren't, which I have mixed feelings about.)

But now a few new changes have come to light:

  • Nature's Grasp: Now has 3 charges, up from 1.

  • Typhoon mana cost has been reduced from 32% of base mana to 25% of base mana.

  • Starfall damage has been increased. Now causes 563 to 653 Arcane damage (Up from 433 to 503) and 101 Arcane damage (Up from 78) to all other enemies within 5 yards.

  • The first one, Nature's Grasp, will be fantastic for PvP (or ToGC faction champs or Deathbringer Saurfang adds gone bad). I've had more than a handful of occasions where my Nature's Grasp was spent all too fast and I still could not get away. I know other classes don't like it, but druids are born runners and the current one charge NG is barely anything at all.

    And for those who still don't like druids running away... don't forget paladins can Judgement of Justice them to bring them to normal run speed, and forcing them to burn mana by repeated shifting to break snares will be as effective as always.

    I'm hearing that the Typhoon change is a PvP change, but since I don't PvP on my moonkin I'm not sure how much of a difference that makes. I do know that when I arena on my paladin the moonkin is often the first kill target so the poor owlbear never has a chance to go oom. Spending less mana doesn't seem so useful when you don't run out in the first place.

    The change to Starfall though... that looks to be big.

    I use it almost every fight. It does too much DPET (damage per execution time) not to. The only reason I wouldn't use it would be if there was some circumstance where AoE was not advisable (I remember being made fun of back in Naxx for destroying some of Loatheb's spores will an ill-advised Starfall).

    What I hadn't thought about though, was the impact on our glyphs. Fortunately, Graylo and Foofy are bigger theorycrafters than I am and they immediately considered the usefulness of the Glyph of Starfall and Focus versus our current weakest glyph, Insect Swarm.

    I don't like the idea of using Focus just because it means I have to stand closer to the boss in order for it to be useful, and I don't want to be in a position where I have to run up to the boss, cast Starfall, and then run away because of some other fight mechanic. Any extra running may very well cancel out any extra dps I might have gained.

    If the theorycrafters come back and say that it's just too good a dps increase I'll do it, maybe even carry stacks of glyphs in my bag to switch between fights as needed, but I'm hoping I won't have to.

    The Glyph of Starfall, though, looks like it'll be a dps increase over Glyph of Insect Swarm. I'd suggest looking at Graylo's Starfall post for the math. It's not going to increase our dps by hundreds, but it'll be an increase nonetheless.

    Graylo thinks IS would still be worth using even unglyphed, and even if the damage turned out to not be worth it, I'd still use IS for progression fights because the 3% hit reduction is an uncommon debuff that isn't easily provided by other classes. Hunters can do it with Scorpid Sting, but that prevents them from using any other sting and does no damage. A moonkin using an unglyphed IS would still be contributing dps as well as the debuff.

    No comments: