Last week I posted part 1 of my MoP wish list focusing on a Gem Overhaul.
Here is part 2 of my MoP wish list, and most of it will focus on the things I would like to see for the Moonkin play style, but the first item is an exception.
So, lets get started.
A 2012 2Q or 3Q Release:
Oh god do I hope for a late 2Q or early Q3 release of Mists of Pandaria. I am really not sure I can keep playing Dragon Soul for 10 more months. I don't think anyone would oppose an earlier quicker release of the new expansion, but from what I've seen a lot of players are clearly skeptical of Blizzards ability to do so.
Yes, according to the spreadsheet that was leaked a couple of years ago, the planned release time frame for MoP was 2Q 2012, but lets be honest. Blizzard has been saying for years that they would like to release patches and new expansions more quickly, yet it still took them 2 years to release WotLK after TBC, and it took them 2 years to release Cata after WotLK. We also have yet to hear about Mop Alpha and Diablo 3 is way behind schedule.
That said, I'm optimistic. MoP shouldn't have some of the challenges that previous expansions had like completely reworking the old world and judging from the amount of information that has already been released, it seems like Mop is already farther along then most would expect before Alpha testing. That said, if we don't hear about alpha testing soon, I think we are looking at another holiday release.
A Simpler Moonkin:
During the WotLK expansion, we Moonkin complained and complained about Eclipse and the general state of Moonkin DPS, and the funny thing is part of me looks back on that time with envy. To be fair, I'm sure my some of my hindsight is tinted with rose colored glasses. The old model had very real and very big problems, but it wasn't the complicated mess that we have to day where players have to make choices on the fly with limited information.
The current moonkin DPS model is way to complicated in my opinion and I don't find it to be that fun. As far as I know, no other spec is expected to make the number of judgement calls we have to make just to do average DPS. What other class has to clip their DoTs frequently to make sure they are fully buffed? Which other spec, has to decided if it's better to cast a cooldown based Nuke now or later?
The good news is that according to the information already released about MoP, things should be improving. From what I can tell the changes that have been proposed so far, hit the mark of what we need. The changes to out DoTs will simplify them, but won't make them mindless and the change to Starfall ends the debate of when to cast it.
There are still things that need to be addressed but I like the way Blizzard is headed.
A Real Movement DPS Solution:
I have to give Blizzard credit for trying, but I think everyone would agree that the first attempt was a failure. At it's peak, Lunar Shower was used more as a Nuke then a movement DPS solution, and now at the end of Cataclysm it is almost universally ignored. Blizzard has said they want to revamp Lunar Shower for MoP, but the question I have is into what?
Here's the problem as I see it. All movement is very disruptive to casting and has a significant impact on DPS, because all movement will interrupt your cast. This is particularly bad for Moonkin since Starfire has the longest cast time of all the core nukes from all five caster DPS classes (yes, I know pyroblast is longer, but it's not really a spammed nuke from what I understand). This means that on average Moonkins will lose more casting time due to movement then other caster classes because our Nukes more time to cast on average. On top of that, our core DPS mechanic Eclipse is based upon us completing our casts. Therefore movement also means that we will transition between Eclipses more slowly again reducing out DPS in multiple ways. To be clear, having to move is bad for all DPS specs, but from what I can tell, Moonkins are one of the hardest hit when movement occurs.
The other half of the problem is that most movement isn't persistent and only lasts a few seconds at most. As a result, the solutions I've seen Blizzard implement so far have been a bit underwhelming. Take Lunar Shower for example, for it to have it's full impact it needs to be fully stacked which would take 3 seconds at the absolute minimum, and most movement would be over before it's fully stacked. The other example is the Shaman spell Spiritwalker's Grace that allows Ele's to cast while moving for 15 seconds. It's definitely, a nice thing to have for those long preplanned repositioning movements, but with a 2 minute cooldown, it has less of an impact on the short and spontaneous movements, that tend to be more of the norm in my experience.
As I'm sure you can tell, I'm not happy with either of the solutions above, but to be honest I don't have a great suggestion either. One idea I have liked, (but can't remember where I heard it) was what if they allowed casters to cast while moving but at a slower rate. For example if you start casting a 3 second spell but move for one second during the middle it would take 4 seconds in stead of 3, because that middle second took twice as long. It sounds like a very interesting idea, but I'm sure the technology needed to do something like that would be very complicated, and possibly prohibitive.
A Moonkin Execute:
How many of you have been in this situation? You're fighting a boss, and doing a respectable DPS. You take a quick look at the DPS meters and lets say for arguments sake you are number 5 in a 25man raid. Then, we get to the end of the encounter with just 25% health left on the boss and by the end of the encounter you're 10th instead of 5th. Does this sound familiar to anyone else?
DPS can be very hard to judge mid-fight especially when you have a mechanic like eclipse that by definition makes your DPS streaky, but I'm tired of getting trashed in the "execute phase" of a fight. Moonkin need some sort of ability or buff that allows us to do ramped up DPS at the end of a fight just like most of the other DPS specs in the game. That said, it needs to be done with care, so that we aren't once again crippled by complexity.