Blog Archive by month: December 2008
by Tachyon on Tue. 23. December 2008, 00:51
Filed under: frost lotus, herbalism, wintergraspJust a quick tip for the other herb gatherers out there:
Frost Lotus does not only have a drop chance when plucking other high-end herbs, but it is also a real plant that can be gathered in Wintergrasp, the new open PvP zone (regardless of whether your or the opposite faction controls the area).
And even better: it can yield more than one per plant, yay!
Here's a map with spawn the locations in Wintergrasp: http://www.wowhead.com/?object=190176. By the way, you need a herbalism skill of 450 to gather it.
by Tachyon on Thu. 04. December 2008, 21:41
Filed under: frostbolt, glyph, raiding, frostfire, qqI'm more or less one level away from hitting lvl 80, and the more I approach the level cap the more I'm concerned about my choice of frost for raiding.
The big frost killer comes in the form of a glyph:
It adds 5% to the frostbolt damage, but takes away the snare component.
From a boss fight perspective, this is purely good, as bosses can't be snared anyway.
But at the same time it renders frostbolt completely useless in PvP and solo play, I mean seriously, who would use frostbolt anymore outside an instance if it wouldn't have the slowing effect anymore? Even for 5 men instances, it's a bad choice.
Deep Frost was my spec of choice for its superb versatility. I could use the spec for raiding and it was also good for PvP, not the best in both cases but certainly the second best option and therefore the best compromise. Of course one could decide to just not take the glyph, and deal without the 5% damage increase, but no sane raiding guild would accept such a choice from a mage. Oh, and there's of course no alternative frostbolt glyph, either take it and have a raid-only mage spec that's sub par to both Fire and Frostfire or leave it and be benched forever.
No compensation for Ghost Hit and partial resists
In The Burning Crusade, Frost was viable for raiding throughout all raid instances and could compete nicely with fire (which still did 5% more DPS, but's that was acceptable).
Then the 3.0 patch came, and fixed the Ghost Hit bug (Frostbolt gained 6% instead of 3% +hit out of 3/3 Elemental Precision) and also fixed the binary effect of Frostbolt, so it will now also be affected by partial resists (it's about 4% less damage on bosses due to level based resistance). It's good that the bugs were fixed, but if frost was balanced around the previous performance (with the bugs) and now doesn't have any compensation, this only means that we now do significant less damage that with a fire spec.
The snare tax
Frostbolt scales badly anyway, as it get's a 5% penalty on +spellpower because it has a snare effect. This snare tax also applied when the target was immune to the snare effect (bosses for example), and I assume that it will still apply when we would use the Frostbolt glyph. I assume Blizzard forgot about this, since as far as I know we don't have such a snare tax on the new Frostfire Bolt spell.
Taxing for an effect that isn't even applied is wrong on many levels.
Comparison with other glyphs
As a comparison, let's look at what glyphs are available for Fireball and Frostfire Bolt:
- Glyph of Fireball - Increases the critical strike chance of Fireball by 5%, but removes the damage over time effect.
5% more crit together with Burnout and Ignite results in about 5% more damage (depends on your current crit chance, if you have less than 30% crit on fireball it's even more). The damage loss by the removed DoT is negligible, and the increased crit change even increases the mana return from Master of Elements
- Glyph of Frostfire - Increases the initial damage dealt by Frostfire Bolt by 2% and its critical strike by 2%.
A superb glyph which boosts the base damage and the crit chance, and we all know how well this spell scales with crit.
These two glyphs are extremely nice, and none of them breaks the gameplay for the according specs. One could argue that the 5% more damage fo the frostbolt glyph boosts frost mages more than 5% crit or 2% crit/damage, but keep in mind that frostbolt spam is only the larger of two slices of a frost mage's DPS. The other, smaller slice is the DPS provided by the water elemental, for that we need a second glyph.
Working around the problem
- For PvE, either spec Fire or better Frostfire. There's currently no reason to spec frost apart from the excellent mana efficiency and the low crit chance on the beginner's gear at lvl 80.
- For PvP, stay frost, and don't get the glyph. Live with the fact that there's no valid glyph for your bread-and-butter nuke.
- For PvE/PvE: Spec frost, take the glyph in order to not to be completely screwed in DPS terms, and use Frostfire Bolt as an opener in PvP. This is very risky, as this exposes both the frost and fire tree to a counterspell. Reapplying the snare is also problematic, as soon as your opponent uses the insignia when you're already started casting a Frostbolt.
We can only wait and hope that the dual-spec feature will come more sooner than later (hopefully with patch 3.1, but that will still take some months), and that we will have two sets of glyphs then, one for each spec.
Even then, I'm afraid Frost is dead for raiding.
Are there any frost raiders left out there?
Are you PvPing and raiding with the same spec?
Do you use the Frostbolt glyph, and how much does it impact your gameplay?