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PatchingMorning, all!

It’s EU patch day, and 2.4 is busy installing on my MacBook.

I’m not holding out much hope of getting much play time in, though, partially because I’m out for a few hours this evening, and partially because yesterday’s US experience seemed to suggest that the servers might take a while to come back up…

Still, I’m more excited about this patch than any since the pre-BC patches, because I’m in a position to go and enjoy the content straight away. Sure, I won’t be in Sunwell Plateau any time soon, but the rest is accessible.

Well, accessible, if the lag of everyone piling into one island doesn’t destroy playability for a day or two.

So, chums in other parts of the world are busy installing the 2.4 update. Us poor Europeans won’t get it until tomorrow morning, so I shall watch everybody else’s first 24 hours with interest.

My guildies are already busy arranging Magisters’ Terrace runs, but for nights I can’t do, alas, so it’ll be the Shattered Sun Offensive dailies for me at first.

What are you planning to do first in the new patch? Taunt me with your US/Oceanic realm plans… :)

Blood4life

Busy, busy, busy today, preparing for our first, and likely very brief, visit to Gruul’s Lair tomorrow. (We only have 20 people signed up – so it’s more likely to be a tourist trip, than a boss-killing one).

However, I would like to pause to welcome Blood For Life to the druid blogging world. Lonetree is a Tauren druid who is class lead for his guild. Mind you, he clearly has confused loyalties. His third post is about his warlock…

Welcome, Lonetree.

Last night in the Slave Pens was a complete Grindhouse. I was below
20% durability before we reached the second boss, over two hours into
the run. Now, two of those deaths were my own fault, through not
knowing the instance and the pull pattern (I haven’t run it since I
last did it on non-Heroic mode). But most of them were to do with loose
mobs, Hunters feigning and a lack of any form of realistic aggro dump.
Eventually we had to call it just prior to the last boss when one of
the hunters just had enough.

And I came away seriously worried about my own ability to heal
heroics. I just die too easily, and keep everyone waiting while I run
back. The lack of an out of combat res wasn’t actually the issue –
there was only one situation where a party member died and I didn’t.
And there were times when I just couldn’t keep up with the damage to
the tank.

So here’s the thing – in your experience, can deep resto druids
really cut it as heroic healers, or do they need an off-healer to make
it work?

Just a word of warning – I’m going to be going through my blogroll shortly, and removing any blogs that haven’t been updated this year.

If you’re reading this, and have a dusty, neglected blog, it’s time to get posting again!

Gnarled_leafyThe end game really is all about incremental gear improvements, isn’t it? For us small, tight guilds who are never going to get much beyond the 10 mans, our pool of potential gear is even smaller, with a huge focus on Kara drops and Badges of Justice loot. And so, it has been a good, good week for the Leafy one.

On Tuesday night we dropped Mr Illhoof for the first time, and in his fear at my woody awesomeness, he carelessly dropped the Cord of Nature’s Sustenance, which made me a happy, happy tree. And he threw in the Mender’s Heart-Ring for good measure. w00t!

And then, last night’s Heroic Setthek Halls run, to get my Boomkin chum Ashilandra her Epic Flappy Form got me the final few badges I needed for my Gnarled Ironwood Pauldrons. And very lovely they are. I feel like a proper Druid now, with decent leather shoulders, instead of the Priest drag cloth ones I’ve been wearing.

What now? Well, I need to help my chum Toojags get some nethers so we can have a Hood of Primal Life each. And I really, really want the boots from the chess event, to replace the greens(!) I’m wearing now. But most of all, I’m saving my badges for the lovely 2.4 Badge of Justice rewards.

Luckily, The Part Time Druid has a good look at the 2.4 Druid Badge of Justice Gear, and that chest piece is looking mighty nice, if I can get the badges together. (It’s possible Nightbane might drop something nice in the meantime, but I’m not holding my breath…)

Time to start refilling my badge bank, I think.

CycloneAmanda from WoWInsider seems to be working hard on being Druids’ least favourite blogger, after her efforts in ignoring the Lifebloom nerf in favour of laughing at the warlock nerf on the podcast. Her latest post takes the slightly mouldy mana biscuit:

I’m pleasantly surprised at the minimal amount of crying that Druids are doing over the reduction of Cyclone’s range to twenty yards. Sure there have been complaints, but as a whole, the Druid community seems to have been pretty mature about the nerf.

Oh, right, so the campaign against the Lifebloom nerf was immature was it? It wasn’t a fact-and-numbers based campaign that proved our point and which, at this point, seems to have reversed the nerf? And even if that isn’t what she was implying, the sheer fact that the discussion was conducted in an adult, reasoned way should have suggested that druids are quite capable of being "pretty mature". Indeed, when the nerf was shifted from the "tick" to the "bloom", we all went "ah, good" and shut up.

I’m probably being over-irritable about this, and it’s possible here mindset was purely on Arenas when she wrote the post (just look at the tags), but really, if there’s one thing the debates about both the Warlock and Druid nerfs in the upcoming patch have taught us, it’s that you can’t apply changes to one area without very carefully thinking about the other. And, equally, perhaps WI bloggers should give just a little more thought about how their readers might be feeling before putting finger to keyboard…

A Hunter is ressurected So, here I am, in an apartment well away from anything resembling a reliable internet connection. You know what that means. WoW withdrawal. And tonight the Ravens might be clearing Karazhan for the very first time. It’s tough, I tell you, tough.

But it does leave me time to think. To scratch my woody chin, and ponder the meaning of life, the world of warcraft and everything. And do you know what I’ve realised? On the whole my guild doesn’t understand healers. We have endless discussions about the variations in different tanking styles, but even my fellow healers have little to no understanding of Druid healing techniques. And, I must confess, until very recently, I had very little idea of the full range of Priest or Paladin healing ability.

Are we unique in this? Or do other guilds worry endlessly about tanking strategies and DPS rotations, and just assume the healers will keep everyone alive with marginal strategy?