Today’s Ask the Devs answers were exactly as I predicted. Blizzard never announces anything new or super insightful in this series (that’s what their official blogs and Dev Watercolers are for), and they often answer questions that pop up a lot with newbies but make veterans cringe. I don’t really mind the newbie questions; I think too many people forget how difficult it can be for a brand new or returning player to jump into the information ocean that is World of Warcraft, and that they have the same right to answers as us more seasoned players do.
Anyway, on to the things that might interest bears!
Ferals, with two roles smushed into a single specialization, are the strongest hybrid in the game. To make the most of your chosen feral spec, you should learn how to play both cat form and bear form to the best of your ability.
I spend about half my progression raids as cat, half as bear. While I think part of this is due to my guild’s Divine Guardian guilt (“we really like bears, but Divine Guardian is just so overpowered that we’re forced to use two paladin tanks; here, have a dps cookie”), it’s unmistakeable that bears bring the best off tank dps around. Bear and cat specs are nearly identical, and their gear is interchangeable. Holding your own as a bear-cat hybrid will take some extra gold and preparation, but the end result is that you become invaluable to your guild as both a tank and damage dealer.
The newest PTR has been released, and so far things are looking good. First off, here are the patch notes as relating to druids.
Many crowd control abilities no longer cause creatures to attack players when they are cast. The creature will not attack the player when the crowd control wears off, and nearby creatures will not become hostile to the player either. However, if a visible player gets too close to the target creature, the creature will remember and attack the player when the crowd control effect wears off. The intent is to make it easier for dungeon groups to manage crowd control assignments and pulling packs of hostile NPCs. The abilities affected by this change are: Hibernate, Entangling Roots, Wyvern Sting (will still cause hostility when it begins to deal damage), Freezing Trap, Polymorph, Repentance, Shackle Undead, Blind, Hex, Bind Elemental, Banish, Seduction.
Lots of good things are happening for ferals. I already wrote up an in-depth summary for changes to bears. All my guides and tank comparisons have been updated for 4.1 as well. Here’s a nice little list for all types of ferals (bear, kitty, pvp) so that you won’t forget to do some important things now that the patch has dropped.
Bears are pretty special. They’re so different than the shield tanks that it’s hard to understand just how special. Here’s my list of things other people should know about bears so that they will know how to use them well or help their raid’s bears improve. This list gets more and more detailed and complicated the further you read, so if you feel like you understand “enough”, you don’t need to read the whole thing.