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Mists of Pandaria talent system - thoughts?

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Hi. This is something that's been banging around in my head since... well since Blizzcon pretty much. I haven't really been able to form an opinion of the new talent system - love it or hate it? I'm all for meaningful choices and "different" playstyles that are all viable, but at the same time I'm kind of bummed by all the talents that we're losing - some of which have been staples of our classes or specs for years.

Anyway, I was wondering what your thoughts were on the matter - especially those of you who've played the beta more and have had a chance to see how the new talents work in practice.

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I like the new talent system. I always thought that talents that give 1% more XXX or YYY are completely irrelevant, so I'm glad to see that we finally have talents that give us useful spells. In the past, you would have people resorting to theorycrafting to establish that talent X is 0.2354% better than talent Y under particular circumstances. The new talents simplify the gameplay and theory behind the gameplay, and now people will be able to focus on what really matters: playing.

For us, as guide writers, it makes a lot of difference as well. Before, people relied on guides to give them a default build that they can use without even having to think. With MoP, this is no longer the case. Whatever talent you choose will give you a new ability that can have a direct influence on your gameplay. With this new talent system, explanations of which talent to choose in each tier will actually matter and this is going to give us an edge, since simple and precise explanations have become our trademark.

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Hi Mtwain!

I think that the "loss of talents" which you talk about is a bit of a non-issue, since most of the DPS related talents that were previously options are now baseline! So the talents that are iconic are still there.

Personally, I love the idea!

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I think the new talent system is great!

We don't really lose any of our old talents, with a few exceptions. Most of the talents that you always ended up picking are now given to you automatically as passive talents when you choose the spec. I feel that that's a great way to trim down the amount of "choices" you had to make, allowing you to focus on the truly meaningful ones. Many of these talents used to be mandatory for your spec to function as intended, and yet, theoretically, you could have opted out of them, which just makes no sense. The choice was between "as intended" and "terrible".

We do lose out on a few things, though. Mostly various raid buffs that no longer exist, like the +3% increased damage to all party and raid members (ability_hunter_ferociousinspiration.jpgFerocious Inspiration, ability_paladin_judgementofthewise.jpgCommunion etc.). Personally, I think this is a good move. This buff added nothing to gameplay and only served to punish those (mostly 10-man) raids that couldn't have one of the 3 specs that provided it. Again, trimming the fat.

On the other hand, we gain a fair amount of new abilities. Every spec has at least 2 or 3 talent tiers where they need to make a meaningful choice that will actually affect their gameplay and performance in PvE. The other 3-4 talent choices generally have an effect in PvP, or even in PvE but not strictly in terms of DPS/HPS etc. And these are real choices, where you will have to take a good hard look at your situation (the fight you are progressing on, your role in the fight etc.) and make a choice.

Two other things have happened at the same time:

  • We lose a bunch of abilities that belong to other specs of our class. These are generally the type of spells that you would never consider using under 99% of circumstances. Now they're gone, making it a bit easier to organize your action bars and just generally removing the clutter from the spellbook.
  • We no longer have any "+5% crit chance to X ability" glyphs. This is good, too, because those glyphs added zero interesting gameplay. In most cases, there were only 3 good glyphs for a spec, in which case there was no choice. In other cases, some theorycrafting would quickly determine which 3 glyphs were the biggest boosts and that was it. Glyphs in Mists of Pandaria now serve to modify abilities, not simply improving them. It's going to be your job to figure out if the way an ability changes suits your current situation or not.

Anyway, I think that this is a great change and certainly heading in the right direction. I think that once the game goes live, and we get passed the initial wave of "omg where is my X spell" confusion, the player-base will end up liking the changes.

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The only problem that I keep having is the changes that seem to occur each and every expansion. I understand that the game needs to evolve but I just hope that that with this huge system overhaul, they stick with it!

The most annoying thing for me with the current system is the dead talents that you get early on while levelling. Some activated spells and abilities that you only obtained at like level 50+ and made no sense whatsoever! By the time you reach 85 you then dont have any real option (apart from a few tweak talents here and there) you just log on to your favourite website *cough cough* and copy the suggested talents there.

The talents that I have always enjoyed are the likes of spell_holy_symbolofhope.jpgBody and Soul that helped to give your play a sense of style and difference, and this is what the new talents are hoping to achieve.

I've always enjoyed being a little "quirky" in my talent choices over the years (I had half shadow half disc pvp spec back in Wrath for example) but the restrictions placed in Cata made the "optional" choices less and less, and for some specs literally non existent.

The "only" down side I can see at the moment is that there just isnt enough of them. I thought it was bad enough only getting a talent once every two levels. Talent points really used to give me that sense of pushing my levelling (if I was half a level to go and I knew I was getting a new talent I would grind like mad!). Saying that however my levelling days are pretty much over anyway, and looking to end game content this wasnt even an issue!

Like Vlad mentioned it will be the initial uproar of players saying "omg where is X spell" (which always is spec related, isnt talent related per say). After that I think it has the opportunity to show some individualism and hopefully bring back some different play styles!

Just a quick question. Do you still change talents at your class trainer? Is it still the same sort of gold to change them? Just wondering how quickly you can change abilities for a certain raid boss etc thats all :) Think it would be cool to have something like a achievement_zone_dustwallowmarsh.jpgDust of Disappearance to swap them over in the future :D

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Just a quick question. Do you still change talents at your class trainer? Is it still the same sort of gold to change them? Just wondering how quickly you can change abilities for a certain raid boss etc thats all Posted Image Think it would be cool to have something like a achievement_zone_dustwallowmarsh.jpgDust of Disappearance to swap them over in the future Posted Image

You can change talents and glyphs anywhere, as long as you are out of combat. You need inv_inscription_tomeoftheclearmind.jpgTome of the Clear Mind to do it. It's very easy and fast and painless. It means you can seamlessly respec in between boss fights, to make the best out of your character.

For changing your actual spec, yes, you need to visit the trainer and there is still a cost attached. I think it caps out at 67 gold.

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As a level 85 Shaman,

The tiers need to be worked on. I see conflicting/lame statements from GC about them. In one response he literally said making any choice on any given tier shouldnt affect your performance at all. I figure whats the point of them then. :(

As a leveling character any class,

The tiers are WAY too spread apart(every 15 levels). I would often forget I even received a point to put into them. For example you hit level 45 as a shaman and get 3 terrible choices on managing your totems. yay...

They say they are trying to make all 3 choices on any tier give the same amount of benefit or utility for all specs in that particular class but it just keeps reminding me of the minor glyphs in cata.

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