Patch 3.1 is here!April 19, 2009
Highly anticipated Patch 3.1 finally hit us this week, bringing with it Ulduar, Dual-Specs, the Argent Tournament, and much server crashing and downtime. I haven’t dabbled into Dual-Specs yet, and I am just begining the Argent Tournament quests, but I have set foot into Ulduar despite all the Server and Instance downtime and seen a couple of the bosses – which I will elaborate more on soon in another post.
3.1 also brought a lot of Druid changes our way, and I’d like to go over specifically the Feral DPS changes, and how I think they will affect us. But first, let me highlight the changes to refresh our memory.
3.1 Patch Notes Feral DPS Druid Digest
Class Changes – Druid
- Faerie Fire and Faerie Fire (Feral): Now decreases armor of your target by 5%. Has a 5-minute duration, and a 40-second PvP duration.
- Maim: This ability is now considered a stun, and shares a diminish category with all other stuns. It no longer has a chance to break from the target taking damage. Duration lowered to 1 second per combo point.
- Pounce: No longer affected by diminishing returns with other stuns, however, it now shares a diminishing return with Cheap Shot (Rogue).
- New Talent: Primal Gore: Grants the periodic damage from your Lacerate and Rip abilities the chance to critically hit.
- Primal Tenacity: The damage reduction while stunned effect now only works in Cat Form.
- Rend and Tear: The critical strike bonus for Ferocious Bite reduced to 5/10/15/20/25%, down from 10/20/30/40/50%.
- Savage Roar is now considered an Enrage effect and now increases physical damage done by 30% instead of increasing attack power.
- (Resto) Improved Mark of the Wild: Now also increases all of your total attributes by 1/2%.
- Glyph of Berserk: Increases the duration of Berserk by 5 seconds.
- Glyph of Savage Roar: Your Savage Roar ability grants an additional 3% bonus damage done.
- Glyph of Shred: Now increases remaining duration on Rip by 2 seconds each time it is used, up to a maximum of 6 seconds.
- Glyph of Survival Instincts: Increases the percentage of your maximum health received from Survival Instincts to 40%.
- Swipe: Now properly affected by area-of-effect damage caps.
The changes to Fairie Fire are minor, and all it really breaks down to is saving you a GCD by having it last 5 minutes now. The change to 5% armor is just so it scales better – it shouldn’t make much of a difference at all.
Maim, Pounce, and Primal Tenacity changes aren’t that important to a Raiding Kitty, but will be much more important to a PvP Kitty. I don’t spec any points into Primal Tenacity, so no change here for me.
Our newly added talent Primal Gore makes me a happy Kitty, and should make Bears happy as welll. In cat form, it gives each tick of Rip the chance to crit, and now that Rip can last upwards of 26 seconds (with T7 2-set, Glyph of Shred, and Glyph of Rip) this can add up to quite a bit more damage over time. The chance to crit is based off your own Crit Chance, not some seperate number, so with my Crit Chance at 47.13% unbuffed, I can expect to see a nice bit of extra damage compared to pre-3.1 numbers. As for Bears, it gives each tick of Lacerate the chance to crit, which will add up to more threat.
The change to Rend and Tear only applies to Ferocious Bite, which I very seldom use in my Raiding rotations. I’m not sure if it is used more in PvP or not, but I don’t see this change so much as a nerf as it is just balancing out the classes.
Savage Roar has been changed from an extra 40% Attack Power to an extra 30% Damage Done (33% with Glyph of Savage Roar). I’m really not good with numbers, and am not even sure how to do math to see what the change would be here. Reading a bit on forums and the like seem to work it out to be a buff rather than a nerf, but how much of a buff I am not sure yet. I really haven’t spent too much time in Ulduar or any raid since 3.1, so I’m not sure how much more DPS I am doing post-patch. If anyone has any more mathematical insight into the SR change, please let me know and I will update as needed.
While Improved Mark of the Wild is not a Feral Talent, I am recommending that all Druids, whether Feral, Boomkin, or Resto, put two points into this talent. Some Ferals, myself included, have had points into IMotW for quite sometime due to the lack of other Druids in Raids in order to provide the best possible Raid buff. This talent now goes beyond the buffs and now gives 1/2% to all attributes. It may not seem like a lot, but being a baseline Talent, it is definetly worth putting points into.
The Swipe change is one I have been expecting for a while. Seeing as it is a “Bug Fix” I can see that Blizz never intended for any of us to be doing 21K DPS or the like. Don’t look at this as a nerf, look at this as just a bug fix. We weren’t supposed to be getting such insanely high DPS, however limited the time is, and they are just restoring the balance. I don’t know what the actually AoE damage cap is, but I can still do quite a bit of DPS while swiping. Don’t think it Swipe is going to suck now; it doesn’t.
Onto the Glyphs!:
- Glyph of Berserk and Glyph of Survival Instincts aren’t impressing me that much. I am guessing that these two new Glyphs are made for our Bear friends. (Any Bears wanna confirm this?) I haven’t paid for my Dual-Spec yet and haven’t really looked into what Glyphs I will want for Bear Tanking, but I will consider these when I begin to look.
- The change to Glyph of Shred makes me very happy. Previously this would “Increases the damage dealt by Shred to stunned and incapacitated targets by 20%.”. For raiding, this really didn’t do much for me, but as one of the few Cat specific Glyphs, I had it. However, now it is a must have for a raiding Kitty. I will get into my “Cat Rotation” in a future post, but the main goal is to keep both Savage Roar and Rip up at all times. With the T7 2 set bonus and the already existing Glyph of Rip, Rip will last 20 seconds. If you Shred three times during that 20 seconds, the Rip will last a total of 26 seconds. Very nice indeed.
- The newly added Glyph of Savage Roar also is a must have for all Raiding Kitties. It gives us an extra 3% damage done when Savage Roar is up, to a total of 33%. As I said, one of the goals of a Cat Rotation is to keep Savage Roar up constantly, so an extra 3% damage done overall is nothing to laugh at.
I plan to update my previous Glyph posts soon to reflect these changes and additions.
I hope everyone else is enjoying Patch 3.1 as much as I have been. I love the Argent Tournament quests, the new Fishing Dailies, and am really looking forward to seeing all that Ulduar has to offer!
Don’t forget that The Feast of Noblegarden is fast approaching us now! It begins on Sunday, April 26th and runs for a full week until Saturday, May 2nd! I will, of course, have guides up for all the newly added achievements once the event starts!