Working Mom of Three, History Buff, Writer, World of Warcraft Addict. . .My Comments on My Crazy Life.

Since I’m not playing as much as I used to, I have been considering new play styles. I can take my time, slow down, enjoy learning the mechanics of a new alt and how the toon best “plays,” without feeling the internal pressure to rush to 85, get geared, and get ready to raid—go, go, go! I felt as if I rushed through leveling my three “mains” and getting them geared for raiding even though tedious heroics made me want to gag. One thing I do miss was the support that my guild-mates showed me in helping me run through instances, learn my role, improve my performance, and not suck. Am I a great player? No. I know what it takes to be a great player—lots of time, focus, and fast reflexes. I have none of these. But, the folks in my guilds, and of course, my ever-loving hubby, helped me make up for all that by giving me tips on gear, talent trees, and rotations.
So, about that new play style and wanting to experiment: I want to compare Tanking, DPS, and Healer Roles. I am mainly talking about my current “favorite” toon. My little “Cowgirl” (Tauren Druid) turned 51 last night. I cannot believe how fast I’m leveling with her. I keep going back and forth on how I play her. Initially, I planned on dual-specing her to Tank in Feral and to DPS in Boomkin. I was inspired by some very good druids I know and love on my Alliance Servers. When they were in Boomkin or cat forms, they were tops on the DPS Charts. When we needed a good tank, they turned to a bear and literally mauled down mobs, and still put out good DPS numbers.
When we needed an emergency healer—hey, they were more than able to deliver. The restoration druids that I’ve played with usually have other healing toons as well, namely priests (But one really good guild mate with has a hunter for a Main, so my theory could be flawed). So, I gave the possibility of making a healing druid about a millisecond of thought before dismissing it because I don’t heal. I’m the tank-girl. I am the chick in the plate armor who runs up to monsters, throws her “Avenger Shield” at them, and yells, “Hit the pretty girl! You know you want to mess up this face!” That’s been my play style since I started WoW.
I was going through a PVP phase when we started playing our new Horde alts. I did a battleground where I was druid # 3. One was killing Alliance players, mowing down the playing field almost literally, a perfect kitty killing machine. One was so fast that he kept beating me to the flag room—I guess he had some sort of enchant or speed-buff of some kind. And, then, there was me. I didn’t feel as if I served a purpose with this group except to block for the flag carrier. I went with him to guard him, and then I noticed that he was losing HP. I gave him a quick heal, and we made it safely to the flag room. He whispered me, “Thanks! Go with me again? Keep me up?” I had found my role. We’d sneak over in cat form, stealthed. He’d grab the flag, I’d run with him to protect him and keep healing him. We won that battleground, I got more honor points that usual, and I started thinking maybe I wouldn’t be too bad healing as an off-spec.
I’ve had a few more experiences like that since then. I’ve been in randoms where the healer was killed or needed some help. I’ve been questing with hubby and healed him occasionally. I downloaded Vudu, and started using it for buffs mainly, but sometimes to fill-in heal. I just can’t commit to changing my talent tree and making healing a permanent, viable option.
I occasionally tank in bear form, but without a good AoE Taunt in the lower levels, I have problems holding hate. Bear tanking and Paladin Tanking are very different. Rezina just flips her shield and her hair(loving Blood Elf animations—they are so prissy), drops a consecration, and then taunts stragglers back with a “tab and taunt” until everyone goes down. Bears don’t have that luxury. I have trouble managing my pulls with growls and holding onto larger mobs. To combat this, I go slow. Slow tanks are not popular tanks, and people will start pulling on their own and expect me to taunt them off. I honestly have not tried it again for about 10 levels because of a few bad experiences with wipes and healers leaving group. I know that bears gain better skills for holding hate at higher levels. I just haven’t paid that much attention to them. I’ve been too busy trying to figure out Balance.
When I got my druid to 30, I stayed true to my plan and dual-speced Balance. I wanted to play a Boomkin badly—had looked forward to ruling the DPS meters the way my other Boomkin friends had. I bought new gear with intellect and spirit and queued up for a random. And was the “Fail” player of the group. The tank even called me by name and said, “Where’s your DPS?” I told him that I had just re-speced, and he advised me, “Go back. You messed up.”
I have been disappointed with other runs since then. Twenty levels later, I’m still doing much higher DPS in Feral than Balance. I now understand why Boomkin leveling is slower—it takes much longer to kill mobs, and I am much less durable. I have reworked my talent tree twice and I keep buying new Boomkin gear—now adding more critical hit over spirit, so now I have mana issues. I am confused with the eclipse mechanic, and I am frustrated at the long cast times that spells like Wrath and Starfire have. And I don’t know how to best use Faerie Fire—stack it up, or let it tick down like a Warlock’s DOTs? What’s good DPS for a Boomkin at this level? Maybe I’m average and I just don’t know it. Maybe I let one jerk in a PUG make me feel incompetent? There is a wealth of druid information online because they are such a complicated but popular class. The problem is finding up-to-date, accurate information since we just had a new expansion. Most of the stuff I find on gearing, talent trees, and mechanics is either written for level 85s running raids; or if it’s for my level it’s usually outdated Vanilla or BC Wow information.
So, what to do, what to do? I am almost to Outland, where I will start tweaking my play style for the big grind to 85. I’d like to know what I’m doing before I get there. Will I be Tanking? Doing DPS as a cat or a Boomkin? Or will I actually re-spec and give healing a try? I can’t decide!

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