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Patch 3.3 An Early Review

Sunday, December 13, 2009 | posted in | 3 comments

Patch 3.3 has been out for a few days now and I wanted to share my initial impressions.  There has been a lot of content to try out with the new Dungeon Finder feature and Icecrown Citadel.  Lets take a look at some of the new content for 3.3 and break it down.

Icecrown Citadel has been a nice change from Trial of the Crusader.  My guild cleared the first 4 bosses of 25 man on release night and our 10 man raiding groups cleared the wing the next night.  The first wing wasn't very challenging for our guild but the fights were really fun and I liked the encounter mechanics a lot.  The gunship battle is an epic fight and our Fire Nova makes spell is very useful for many of the fights plus it really does great damage on the thrash pulls.  I remember one of our tanks stating "Wow the boss is right there" when we entered ICC.  We did not it would take 30 minutes to clear all the thrash pulls to start the raid.  I almost missed thrash pulls since we pretty much stopped raiding Ulduar for the last month and a half.  I was lucky enough to get Frozen Bonespike on our first Lord Marrowgar kill. Lord Marrowgar has a ton of movement which sucks as an Elemental Shaman since we need to stand still to cast but the phases changes quick enough that the fight can be exciting.  We made quick work of Lady Deathwhisper and the Gunship Battle before we took on Deathbringer Saurfang.  This fight is just an awesome fight.  The mechanics of the fight realy make it a challenging fight, Blood Power took us out a couple times.  I really like this fight as elemental our raid leader assigned the Boomkin and myself to handle pushbacks on the adds.  It took our raid using everything from earthbind totems, frost novas and traps plus pushbacks to keep the adds in line.  The only complaint I have about the raid is is listening to Saurfang over and over if you wipe.  The story is great but not multiple times.  I am working on a Boss encounter raiding guide from an Elemental Shaman's point of view and will post the first 4 fights soon.   

The new Dungeon Finder feature is awesome.  As a shaman being able to queue for both dps and heals makes lets you get into a group in about 30 seconds on our battlegroup.  I do have some issues with it tho.  First the way Blizzard did the loot system should be refined, I think allowing player to DE loot through the interface is a great thing but letting a DE and Greed roll count as the same does not make sense.  If you want an item for an offspec you should be able to Greed roll on an item and not have to pick Need to make sure it does not get disenchanted.  If an enchanter selects Disenchant the should only win the item if no one has selected Need or Greed.  It seems simple to me that Need would be for a mainspec item, Greed would be for a offspec.  I think Blizzard should fix this.  I do like the way I have been matched up with people of similar gear but as many know gear does not always equal skill so you may find yourself in a frustrating group with the Dungeon Finder.  All in all I really like this new tool.

Some of my first impressions on the changes for Elemental Shamans are positive.  I think the changes to Fire Elemental allow us to be very liberal with the use of this totem.  I had it available for every boss in ICC on both my 25 and 10 raids.  I know many shamans will not use Fire Elementals during boss fights but hopefully you are raiding with a Demonology Warlock so you can use your fire totems.  The reduction to Reincarnation's cooldown is a welcomed change, but my favorite new toy is Five Nova.  This spell some some really nice damage even if it has some disadvantages and is situational.  On trash pulls in ICC I have been able to keep up with the rest of the pure dps classes on the meters.  The spell was very helpful on the Gunship Battle and Saurfang encounters for bringing down the adds.  It does eat a ton of mana and the range is limited but as shamans build up experience on where to drop our fire totem and when to use this spell I feel it will be a great tool for us.

From the first couple days this patch  looks very promising.  Icecrown Citadel seems to be a fitting end to the Wrath expansion and some of the changes Blizzard has implemented are very useful.  I can not wait for Icecrown's next wing.  So far Blizzard gets wo thumbs up on 3.3     

3 Responses So far
on December 14, 2009 at 7:50 AM  

Nice site :) My shaman is at 48 now, ill be looking into this blog rather often during the next weeks. 2 years of warrior tanking made me burn out on gear hunting (as opposed to learn some skill) and im now planning to take a look at healing / dpsing. i picked the shaman for its raid qualities, but i also observed its strenght in pvp (3 killing blows at the same time with chain lighting = smile). Thanks for putting together all the info on this blog and may your totems always stand gracefully ;)

on December 14, 2009 at 11:40 PM  

Thank you for the compliments. I'll see if I can put together a post about what to do when you hit 80 :)

on December 15, 2009 at 7:16 AM  

Nice post, and good site! Will be using this as the Shammy version of the Warlock's Den... ;)

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