Well, Ghostcrawler has all but announced the end of season eight, thus putting the proverbial stake through the heart of Wrath of the Lich King. This expansion was fun for a bit, but nerf after nerf and tons of burst later, we end with the hope that a lesson was learned: you cannot fix class imbalances with more damage. October 12 seems to be the likely date for the end of the final Wrath season of Arena, based on Ghostcrawler's statement. That being said, the fellas over at MMO-Champion.com believe that the 4.0.x patch will be deployed to Live servers at roughly the same time give or take a week... though "giving" would be the more likely of the two since Blizzard is not likely to post a major class rebalancing patch with a week left in determining Arena titles and rewards.

Guntir and I may be eligible for a Duelist title from the 5v5 bracket, interestingly enough, if we can get the team together for a bit of grinding to hit 2300 or so. We are at 2232 right now and only played 10 games last week to grind up that 30 rating, so the idea is that we could probably grind out another week or two and end up with a 2300 or 2350 rating which would net us a Duelist title almost-assuredly.

I found this linked in the Cataclysm Beta Boards: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Se6R4sXYBEU

This is a video of a Holy Paladin with nothing much but blues and greens in BGs. The interesting thing to take from this is that his healing is still really strong even against 3-4 targets with zero coordination but strong damage, but his mana is finite. Why do I keep harping on the finiteness of mana pools for healers in Cataclysm?

Feral has a debuff which makes spells cost 30% more.

We actually bring a debuff in PvP which no other class does and it is directly related to healer longevity. If Arena matches go longer in Cataclysm to the point where "whoever runs out of mana first loses," then Feral will be a MONSTER on a team. Forget Mortal Strike... 25% more healing required? That's nice, but 30% more MANA required??? That's way more important. Let's look at it this way, as healers get better and better gear, they will require roughly the same through-put cast-wise to heal a target with MS up. Maybe this is a little easier to grasp with an example:

Holy Pally heals with Holy Light for 10k in the first tier of gear, a warrior's MS hits for 5k but also puts up a 25% healing debuff, making that pally heal for 7.5k.

Okay... the next tier of gear goes like this:

Holy Pally heals with Holy Light for 12k in the second tier of gear, a warrior's MS hits for 7k, but also puts up a 25% healing debuff, making that pally heal for 9k.

Okay... but the Feral in both circumstances will put out more pressure and instead of making the heal less effective, he will make the COST of the heal less effective. So, the Holy Pally can continue using his best heal and it will continue to improve... but the mana cost will ALWAYS be a ton. If matches with-or-without MS always go to the long game, then the team who spends the least mana AND puts out the most pressure should always win (ignoring CC and what-have-you).

Okay, so Feral brings one of the debuffs which no one else does... the DK brings the other debuff. Necrotic Strike continues looking amazing. It is so strong-looking that you almost think that there will be a DK on every 3v3s team in Cataclysm to start simply because Necrotic Strike is auto-wins against bad healers. TSG is definitely going to be strong in Cata, but I truly feel that Feral+DK+Priest will be equally strong if games go long rather than faceroll-training people to death. TSG will continue to put out good pressure, but if they can't kill Priests in the openers anymore, I don't know how much longevity there is there... particularly if you're going against (what I will call for the time-being) Venture-cleave.

... I need Guntir to get his Beta invite so we can actually test out some PvP IN the Beta. This time last expansion, we both had Beta invites and we were both running 2v2 matches on the Beta server to test out which comp would be best, and we eventually settled on Feral+Disc.

Cannot WAIT for Cataclysm at this point... it's shaping up to be REALLY good PvP.