Saturday, April 18, 2009

Patch 3.1 Impressions

I apologize for not posting almost the whole week but it's been crazy with patch 3.1, I'm sure you all know. Well, for me it's been a roller coaster ride these past few days. Simply put, I wheeled and dealed, hustled and bustled and in the process made over 12,000 gold, most of it by selling glyphs. But more on that further on. I'm going to discuss the most important features that patch brought for me, the solo player.

Inscription. While the profession itself wasn't changed, 3.1 can be truly called "The Scribe's Patch". Scribes who have prepared for this patch beforehand made some big bucks. Yours truly included. And that's thanks to the new Dual Spec feature and the newly introduced glyphs. In the first couple of days after the patch I was able to sell glyphs almost as soon as I posted them, for a considerable markup. This trend obviously died down slowly due to competition/undercutting and market saturation. Lucky for me, I caught the train on time. However, the biggest piece of luck was that I got a Book of Glyph Mastery on one of the first kills after the patch. My scribe learned a nice new glyph from the book that I've been able to successfully sell over and over again for 300 gold. It seems that even now, several days later, I'm the only lucky bastard on the server who has that particular glyph.

Dual Specs. Since I don't raid, I'm not that interested in Dual Specs. However, I did learn it on my Paladin due to the fact that I wanted to try Protection instead of Retribution. Well, apart from the fact that Dual Specs does what it is intended, I haven't seen any sign of the "template" feature, where you could set up your talents and then hit a "Confirm" button to set them in stone. Speaking of Protection, I tried it a bit but wasn't very impressed. Actually, it works very well for groups of mobs but for single mobs I found I was running out of mana quickly. It bears more testing, anyway. Another thing about Dual Specs is the mana drain component. It basically gives certain classes (Death Knights, Rogues, Warriors) a big advantage over mana-using classes. I have a feeling Blizzard will remove the mana drain in the future.

Fishing. Man, this was one of the best improvements in 3.1 for me. In summary, fishing can now be learned directly from trainers (no more books) and no more Artisan Fisherman quest which IMO is a waste of time because it sends you all over the world for a few lousy fish. In fact, the quest itself is still available but is no longer required to advance to the next tier. Another great improvement to fishing is that the casting time has been shortened so now you can rack up those levels a lot quicker, but it still takes ages to max out the profession. Finally, you can now fish ANYWHERE, which means that unless you can cast in any body of water regardless of your fishing skill, the only "catch" (see what I did there :) being that you will get mostly junk. However, this has allowed me to fish in Dalaran in close proximity to the trainer and easily gain levels.

Swimming Mounts. I've been waiting on this feature for a long time and finally it's here. I just tried it for a bit since I didn't have the opportunity to actually cross a body of water with a ground mount and it works as expected. Basically you still move through the water at swimming speed but you don't get dismounted. Which means you save those precious seconds that you would have spent summoning the mount. More importantly, autorun will work even better now and you can go AFK for a few minutes while riding, without the fear of getting dismounted when you hit water.

Faster Herbing
. Small change but it makes be happy. Now herbing is in line with mining.

The Argent Tournament. While some of the beginning quests are fun and all, I've arrived at the conclusion that it's not really worth spending the time on. I'm stuck at jousting with those champions or whatever they are called and even though I know each race's strengths and weaknesses, they seem too hard so I'm not bothering with that right now. So I give a Meh to the Tournament for now but I will continue to do the easier quests.

Blood Death Knights. A few things have been switched around as far as Blood is concerned but overall I have the impression that my Death Knight is slightly more potent. Which is always a good thing.

Now as the good AH deals have slowed down, I can concentrate more on my newest love: Fishing. I have to say, I've really gotten into it. Oh and if you are a fisherman, I recommend this awesome addon, which is called Fishing Buddy. It keeps records of what fish you've fished by location. It displays your total fishing skill (including equipment bonuses). It tells you rougly how many casts you need for the next skill point (great feature). It also allows you to cast by double-right-clicking which is very cool for fishing one-handedly.

So these are my impressions regarding WoW's 3.1 Patch. IMO Blizzard did a good job this time and even the server downtime seemed to be lower than previous major patches. But then again, maybe that's me. Now I'm off to hit my favorite fishing spot!


Anonymous said...

The "template" feature you are talking about, i.e. ability to modify your spec before committing, is not automatically enabled. You have to switch it on from the options menu.
- Smelt the Mage

Darth Solo said...

Thanks for confirming this. I had a suspicion I had to enable this option but I've been too busy to actually find it, if you can believe that.

Anonymous said...

Actually, for the tourney, you don't have to worry about their strengths & weaknesses too much. Just get your shields to 3, challenge, and when they ride off, toss a shield breaker. Then, stay on top of them and melee. Refresh your shields every now & then (they're on a 1 minute timer) and toss a shield breaker again when your opponent rides a short distance away. As soon as you throw, get on them again! It takes a little time, but it works.


Darth Solo said...

Thanks, I'll keep that in mind. Actually I've read the strategies on Wowwiki but I still find this quest hard to finish. I'm sure I'll get the hang of it once I get in the mood but right now there are more fun things to do, like fishing :)