I would like to take a moment to address something that's been concerning me. A lot of people are running around in a panic shouting "THE SKY IS FALLING!" because "Raiding won't be needed anymore! O NOES We've wasted our times gearing up! We'll never raid again!!!~1one"
This is a very extremist and alarmist position, I feel. First of all... you never needed to raid to be successful in WOW. There was always the PVP route to epic gear. There's the 5-man route to the .5 set gear. Raiding has not - ever - been the sole focus on WoW. It's become a focal point because there are so many people at 60 looking for gear and content. But for the love of Elune, people - chill out. There will still be raiding in the Expansion, and always will be.
In the last week I've been beta testing I've seen a lot of items drop and so forth, but I've yet to see a single peice that I'd really consider to be an upgrade from my hunter's T2 gear. I've seen a lotta green and blue crap. There's a quest reward right out of the Dark Portal that I will use as a comparison.Handguards of Precision
Blue, BOP, Unique, Hands, Mail
279 AC, 20 AGI, 28 Stam, 38 AP
Epic, BOP, Hands, Mail
276 AC, 14 AGI, 17 Stam, 13 Int, 6 Spi, 10 Shadow Resist
Class: Hunter, +14 Critical hit Rating, +26 APUsing a simple formula of ((Agi/33)+(Crit/14))22 + AP + Agi we get the effective total ranged attack power of these items
. The Handguards clock in at 71.33 and the Dragonstalker also clocks in at 71.33. So, Excel says, DPS wise these gloves are exactly the same. Let's look at the rest of the statistics:
DS VS Precision: +3 AC, +6 Agi, +11 Stam, +12 AP, -13 Int, -6 Spi, -10 Shadow Resist, -14 Critical Hit Rating, exact same calculated total RAP value.
One thing that I've found, playing a hunter in Outland is that I run out of mana very very quickly and may spec back into Efficiency. I need that extra int and spirit. Plus the thing that isn't factored into raw numbers is the set bonuses. I'd lose my 8 pc DS set proc if I swapped some blue on.
I'm a raider. I like raiding. You can't take the raider out of me. As much as I love seeing new content and exploring new places like Outland, I still have not seen some content on Azeroth - AQ40 (past the Twin Emps) and Naxxramas. I wanna see that content. I personally don't care if I'm lvl 70 in full T4, I wanna see that content. I wanna get me a suit of Cryptstalker gear from Naxxramas for my hunter and a suit of Faith for my priest. Why? Cause they look cool. I'll always keep my Dragonstalker and Transcendence for that reason.
Plus there will be new 10 and 25 man raiding in Outland. And I *HATE* PUGS! I have had to PUG so far in Outlands, and it's really annoying. The new LFG system is cool... but it paired me with a warrior in t0, a priest that was shadow and stayed in shadow form, a warlock that wouldn't soulstone, and an OOMKIN druid that refused to heal and spent the whole time spamming Moonfire. Oh it was a nice group composition classwise, but daggum that was the stupidest PUG. (We still cleared Ramparts, amazingly enough.)
Please, for the love of Elune people, stop yelling the sky is falling for those of us that enjoy raiding. I will really expect the raiding guilds/organizations I'm apart of to schedule and find good mixes of good people for these 10 and 25 man raid content. Not just for normal mode - but for HARD mode, and tokens to buy epics. The sky is not falling for raiders. This isn't the end of raiding as we know it. It's just changing a little - the full extent of which is up to the raiding org or guild in question. You'll never take the raider out of me. I've yet to be totally convinced, here in Outland, that I will ever really want to stop doing BWL+ content. If nothing else Outland's easy-access to MC-level gear should help gear up all the raiders even further, and combined with additional levels and new skills, we'll all PWN-ass just a little bit harder. I will still always wanna hang with my friends in SHR and Equilibrium - cause they are my friends, and go kill stuff, be it Nefarian, C'thun, Kel'thuzad, Grull, Lady Vashj, Illidan, Kael'thas, or just grinding Outlands instances on hard mode.
In the immortal words of Douglas Adams... Don't Panic.
Enough dissertation for now. More reporting.
There is lots of Lore in Outland, much to a roleplayer's joy. In Outland the story of Prince Kael, Illidan, and Lady Vashj is continued. After Illidan's defeat at the hands of Arthas, Illidan returned to his Black Citadel in Shadowmoon Valley, and brooded. Kil'jaeden wanted his hide for failing. Upon first arriving in Terrokar Forest at the old Draenei racial city of Shattrath, you get a little glimpse of what followed.
Now the Aldor and the Scyers are different factions. One is friendly to Horde, the other to alliance - and unfriendly to the other faction. Supposedly you can become as friendly or hated as you like with each, but each faction has different quests and factional crafting recipes. So like specializing in crafts, you'll have to pick a side and vy the favor of the Sha'tar (Naaru).
And now... I bring you... Epic Elephants! The Draenei epic Elekk mount:Picture 1Picture 2
That's it for now, folks. Silvermist Leafsdawn, signing off.