BEARS : Now With Divine Fur!

So, this whole hullabaloo about bears’ health and armor nerf coupled with the addition of Savage Defense has had me vaguely concerned for a little while now. I’ve never been one to fly off the handle at proposed changes to game balance, but this one has had me keeping my eyes open.

I’ll admit, I’m very sad to see my big health numbers going away. I love nothing more than getting into little, light-hearted e-peen contests with our other two tanks when they start bantering back and forth about health. Shift to bear, pop Survival Instincts and ain’t no one touching my 57k health.

But that’s all they are though, numbers. In the course of a fight it’s very rare that I’ll even use Survival Instincts. It’s one of my emergency buttons, and our healers are doing such a good job that I rarely find myself in an emergency-producing position.

I don’t know weather Savage Defense will be enough to make up for our health and (more worrying) armor nerfs, but we’ll have to see. Extensive testing by Kalon over at Think Tank shows that it’s buggy as all get out, but does block attacks from behind, and appears to have no internal cooldown. Oh, and apparently it lets rage through too, so my worries about becoming rage-starved are (so far) unfounded.

What has me all kinds of giddy and excited though, are the changes to Swipe.

If you’ve been reading me for a while I’ve gone on at length about my frustrations with swipe.

Now, however, on the PTR Swipe has become un-targeted (oh joy, oh rapture, or unbridled glee) and un-coned.

What that means is we now have super-ultra-spammable-omni-swipe. Last night I tanked the zombie chows on Gluth and had my usual scramble to make sure I was picking them up. I wiggle-wormed my way all over the room, turning to swipe those behind me, tab-targetting to get those in front and wiggling around to do it all over. The whole time I couldn’t help but think how much more amazing this was going to be when 3.1 hit and I had my omni-swipe.

The new swipe, coupled with Savage Defense (which procs off of critical strikes) is going to make bears rival paladins in the category of utility. I don’t think we’ll overtake them by any streach of the imagination. Swipe is on the GCD and must be pressed while Consecrate is like one of those ‘fix it & forget it’ crock-pot meals; similar to Death & Decay for the Death Knight.* But I can definitely see myself being asked to tank lava blazes and whelps on Sarth while our warrior takes care of the drakes. It’s currently the other way around.

I’m still concerned weather Savage Defense will make it to Live in a de-bugged state and weather or not it will be enough to make up for the health and armor nerfs. I think AoE trash tanking we’ll be fine, but single-target boss tanking might start to get painful, but we’ll see.

* PS, Corpse Explosion freaks me the hell out.

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  • Comments (2)
  1. /shuffle

    Sometimes, Corpse explosion is the only way to get to the good stuff inside.

    Signed,

    Colemand

    • Tigerfeet
    • March 18th, 2009

    But the Giblets get stuck in my furrrrr! D:

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