----------UPDATE 3-------------

* The root effect from Shattered Barrier now shares diminishing returns with the root from Improved Cone of Cold.


Blizzard has officially ended the reign of Mages. This is beautiful... I actually might start crying from joy.

----------UPDATE 2-------------

* Glyph of Rake is now Glyph of Pounce, which increases the range of Pounce by 3 yards.

Well now... this is interesting. This takes the range from 5y (melee range) to 8y which is reasonably close to the range on Sap (10y). This might actually be a major glyph worth taking. However, unless Blizzard has some plan to make Pounce usable more than once per arena match, I don't see this being SUPER necessary; again, we will have Pounce and a few other glyphs to choose between, but none of them are very good.

I'll probably take this one just because sometimes I can't get openers on people without using FCC... and that's bogus.


WoWHead.com (of all places) listed some interesting spell changes in the latest post; this one most notably.

Feral Swiftness

EDIT: Bah, it doesn't seem to link to the correct text, I'll quote here for rank2 -

Feral Swiftness Rank 2
Requires Cat Form
Increases your movement speed by 30% in Cat Form and increases your chance to dodge while in Cat Form or Bear Form by 4%.

In addition, your Dash and Stampeding Roar have a 100% chance to remove all movement impairing effects from affected targets when used.

... yeah ... okay. Now, I am definitely thinking about training Stampeding Roar.


Thursday is usually a day when Blizzard feels like pushing a patch to the PTR. They do not do it every Thursday when the PTRs are up, and they only do it when there are changes to be made. I have no idea if there will be a push today, but I can certainly hope that there will be one and it will have some Feral quality of life changes. Do I expect there to be a push? My answer is "...yes...?" Do I expect there to be any quality of life changes for Ferals? No, not in the slightest.

I know, I know. It is somewhat depressing to think that Feral is where the devs think it should be. However, there are a fair few Ferals doing somewhat well in the arenas. Datah and Miirkat are both rocking 3v3s teams with ratings above 2700, so there must be something of note happening there, and as long as there are at least a couple of gladiator-contending Ferals, I think that Blizzard will be fine with them. Sure, there are a number of things that should probably be changed with Feral, and yes, I have listed them here a number of times, but I think that Blizzard has made their view rather clear, regardless of whether the community agrees with it or not.

1) Feral has 149% movement speed in Cat Form; no other melee moves nearly as fast as Feral does. We move so fast that when afflicted with a 50% snare, we move roughly the same speed as DKs with Death's Advance. DKs are the only other melee who can claim this level of mobility.

2) Feral is one of two melee classes in the game who can break snares at will with one GCD with no cooldown or true cost (the other is Ret). While shapeshifting to break snares is useless against a number of classes, there are definitely situations where it is extremely useful to break out of a snare and start making ground at our improved speed. Rets can do this as well, and even have an extremely short-CD Sprint-esque ability to boot, but they have no snare and so until such a time as a snare shows for Rets, Feral stands alone.

3) Feral is the only melee in the game with a CC that is undispellable.

4) Feral is the only melee in the game with a CC that does not have a cooldown; in fact we have TWO CCs which do not have cooldowns (Cyclone and Roots). In fact, against other Ferals we have THREE CCs which do not have cooldowns (Hibernate).

5) Feral is the only melee in the game which is not susceptible to disarm effects.

The point I am trying to make here, in case it is not painfully obvious, is that while Feral does suffer from a lot of quality of life issues (and even some play-style facets which are simply clunky), we have advantages over other melees in some ways. On the other hand, a lot of our issues stem from these quasi-advantages:

1) We are one of two melees in the game who has to gem for spell penetration (Enhance is the other) because our CC is a spell rather than a physical attack (interestingly, Repentance is on the physical hit table as well as HoJ).

2) We are the only melee in the game who has to spend half (and next patch - more than half) our CC duration burning GCDs because we used our CC. Instant Cyclones cause us to have wasted Cyclone-time because of shapeshifting GCDs.


As you can see, for the past few days I have been mulling over suggestions to make on the PTR in the context of Feral quality of life improvements. I have actually found a group of non-Ferals who understand the game pretty well and can make counterarguments which actually hold up to rational thought. For instance, I had never fully appreciated that Feral was the only melee in the game with a CC effect that does not have a cooldown; this absolutely blew my mind when I thought about it. In fact, one of the key reasons that these people were suggesting the nerf to Cyclone (6s to 5s) in 4.1 is a fair change is because Cyclone is overpowered regardless of who is casting it. Resto is definitely overpowered, but Feral is arguably in the same boat when played well because it can be used nearly as often and nearly as effectively.

It was this type of argument that made me think about the shapeshifting global cooldown. The reason this has likely never been changed is two-fold: first, it keeps Restos from having on-demand control via Skull Bash and Bash; second, it keeps Ferals from being super-powerful as the only melee with a zero-cd CC effect. I made the suggestion the other day about allowing Predator's Swiftness to allow a zero-cost nature spell to be used instantly in Cat Form. Now that I think about it some more, this would be a powerful change because of the up-time it would provide Ferals directly. For instance, it would change Cyclone from, 4.0.6 versus 4.1, a 6sec duration which we spend 3sec of GCD-locked before being able to attack again, to a 5sec duration which we spend 1.5sec of GCD-locked from simply having used an ability. That would make a 6/3s into a 5/3.5 (duration:uptime). This change would seem rather weak to most people, but it would play rather strong, in my opinion as it would allow Ferals additional dps-time (not much, but a little) even in the light of Cyclone being nerfed.

Anyway, I will continue making suggestions like these as I come up with them and the patch is rolling along on the PTR.

As a last little bit of love, I finally did it: the video is up. I must warn you all, this is not my finest work and in fact I threw it together somewhat quickly because we had to go to my girlfriend's parents' house for dinner ~45m later, so the editing is rather "meh". Additionally, on a sad note, I was IM'd by Lev (our Pally) last night saying that he was transferring servers, so we will be done with our 3s team for a while (we got our 2200 weapons, so it is not as if we need to do 3v3s; probably just sit on the team for titles). I have a few more videos of our 3v3s in action which I might put up over the coming weeks just for fun, but we will likely be focusing on 2v2s again soon.

I would like to conclude this post with a tribute to Lev. He was a great Holy Paladin to play with; potentially one of the best with which I have had the pleasure of entering the arena. We may have gotten into some arguments once or twice, but more often than not we were having lots of fun farming bad and good teams alike. He knew how to use his utility, he knew how to heal, and only once did I have to tell him "don't sit there eating mana burns!" We are going to miss you, Lev; good luck in your future en devours wherever they may lead you.