Maximize your DPS: Retribution Paladin Edition

(Editors note: this post is current as of 3.0.3.)

Background

For the past two years I’ve spent my time in World of Warcraft behind the proverbial steering wheel of an orc warlock. I did the raiding thing pre-Burning Crusade, but got burned out a few months before Burning Crusade came out. Around six months after BC launched I did what every other Horde player did on a PvP server, and rolled a blood elf paladin. I got him to level 25 or so and left him sitting there for the next year while school and work kept me away from spending any significant time in WoW. About three weeks ago I got tired of never being able to find a healer and decided to level up the old pally. I leveled with a standard protection spec after level 40, and kept that spec until 3.0.2 came out, upon which I respecced to retribution to try out this wonderfully ‘OP’ spec I’d been hearing everyone complain about.

Two days ago I dinged 70. The next day 3.0.3 rolled out the promised nerfs to our wonderfully over-powered retribution tree. Not to be discouraged, I equipped my Blessed Battlegear of Undead Slaying and a nice axe I picked up from Kara a few hours after I dinged and set out to learn all I could from my helpful guild mates about my class and spec. Here’s a few helpful tips I learned that can boost you up the damage meters. Continue reading Maximize your DPS: Retribution Paladin Edition

The Scourge Invasion: A Survivers Guide

If you play WoW and have logged on in the past few days, you might have noticed that Azeroth is under attack by the Lich King. Turns out Arthas wasn’t too excited with the prospect of having us crash his pad up in Northrend, so he’s sending us a little taste of what’s in store for us in Wrath of the Lich King. Can you say zombie apocalypse? I knew you could. The event hearkens back to the opening of Naxx pre-BC.

It all started with crates of zombie contagion and infected roaches appearing last week, and the arrival of Argent Healers in the capital cities. Players infected with the disease would turn into zombies in ten minutes, then were able to infect other NPCs and PCs. Argent Healers could cure you of the plague, and kill zombies with holy retribution to the face. The plague has gotten progressively worse over the course of the past week, dialing down the incubation time from ten minutes, to five minutes, and now to one minute. The Argent Healer’s numbers have been decimated. You can find them next to faction leaders and outside the main gates of capital cities.

Your experience may vary, but on my server Shattrath is completely overrun with zombies, PC and NPC alike. Getting anywhere in the city without a flying mount is near impossible without getting infected, but here’s a few tips that might save you from becoming a ravenous zombie (and taking that 10% hit to durability).

  • The infection debuff is the equivilent of 3 disease counters. Paladin’s Cleanse and Priest’s Abolish Disease can remove it, but it takes a few casts. If you arn’t one, make sure you’re good friends with a few.
  • Zombie’s are slow. Their Lurch ability increases speed by 100% for 10 seconds with a 30 second cooldown, which ratchets up their movement speed to that of a normal mount. That means that if you’re over level 30, you can outrun them 66% of the time, and if you’re over level 60, you can outrun them 100% of the time.
  • Avoid major cities. B list Capital cities like Thunder Bluff, Silvermoon, Exodar, and Darnassus are good places to hang out. Most of the player organized raids are being conducted against Shattrath and Orgrimmar/Ironforge. Undercity isn’t a great place to be either due to it’s proximity to the quest hub at Light’s Hope Chapel in EPL. Avoid these hotspots and you’ll avoid the bulk of the zombie population.
  • If you fight a big group of zombies, you’ll probably lose. If you disagree, go try it. Trade is filled with people griping about how sick they are of the zombie event, but the truth is if you don’t pick a fight with them you’re probably not going to get infected. You’re faster, more agile, and you have more tricks up your sleeve then they do. Be alert, and you’ll be fine.

Just had to share

Many moons ago I shared my bewilderment over the state of the world we live in. I now retract my statement. I love people who spend money on trading card games. In fact, I think they should spend some right now.

Imagine my surprise when I picked up a couple booster packs from the latest World of Warcraft Trading Card Game expansion to find a X-51 Nether-Rocket card staring up at me in all its shiny glory. For a brief moment I considered keeping it, but then I realized I’d be losing out on the more then two hundred bucks I could make selling it on eBay. I kinda feel like I just won the lottery.

Frivolity

In lieu of any meaningful content to present, I’ve finally decided to break my posting trend with something completely pointless: Commentary on video games!

Hellgate: London

First off, it’s not 3D Diablo. Honest. Even if it’s made by the same guys who developed Diablo 2, and you’re using exotic weapons to kill all manner of hell-spawned demons and undead, it’s not D2. Why? Well…we’re really not sure, but it’s not. Truth be told, while it may be unfair to compare the two games, the comparison is inevitable as the Patriots winning the Super Bowl this year. And unfortunately for Bill Roper and the gang, the game doesn’t come close to the polish of the original. It could, and at times you think it does, but you never get the feeling of belonging to the world you’re playing in.

I got hooked into (not onto) the game after listening to an interview of Bill Roper by the guys over at the 1Up Yours podcast; I came away really excited about the game, and started watching trailers and reading previews like a Flagship fanboy. Thing is, After dropping fifty bucks and spending twenty-thirty hours playing it, I’m not really feeling the quality of “this is awesome” that I expected to. I came into the experience really really wanting to like it, and that managed to carry me through the first week or so of playing it, but now I’m not feeling the urge to pick it back up at all.

Let’s get down to specifics.

The graphics? Pretty, but the dark and dank does get a little old after a while. I guess I can’t expect anything else from a game set in post-apocalyptic London though.

Gameplay? Fun, especially the evoker and marksman classes. My main is a guardian, mostly because it’s the easiest to play and hardest to die when lag strikes. Which brings me to the first of my big concerns. I don’t know if it’s the servers or if it’s because I’m playing the game over a DSL connection, but the lag is ALWAYS horrendous. Usually anywhere from a 1-15 second delay between my mouse-click in real-time and the response in the game. This might have gotten fixed in the past week that I haven’t been playing, but I doubt it. I honestly haven’t even tried to play a different class any farther then the first five levels online because I know I’ll do nothing but die in the later levels if there’s any lag in the game. Guardians do better when surrounded, evokers? Not so much.

Second big concern: no skill reset. In a game where skills make up EVERYTHING about your character, the lack of a reset button is nothing short of freakin’ ridiculous. If I have to pay 10,000 pallidum to do it, sure. Whatever. Just get that feature in the game and live as soon as possible. Especially in a new game when you really have no idea how all the skills work together in actual gameplay, its just stupid to expect players to put 50-70 hours leveling a character to fifty just to try out ONE set of skills. Please Flagship, please Bill Roper, do the smart thing.

The other thing people are complaining about is the lack of subscriber content. Since I’m not a subscriber and don’t plan to be, that really doesn’t concern me. My only hope is that the game will be patched to it’s full potential before too long. Because dang it, I need something to keep me occupied until Starcraft 2 comes out.

Continue reading Frivolity