Rambling the First, on Hybrids
My apologies to the author whose post inspired me, I cannot recall which blogger it was to give credit. I can, however, use a post from my own blog's history as a starting point.
In examining the fact that Druids simply don't follow the rules, I mentioned the fact that we can, to a certain extent, shift roles mid-fight by shifting forms. While this remains true and does showcase our hybrid capabilities, we aren't and can't be good enough at a backup role to be truly hybrid, with half an exception for bears and cats.
Blizzard has made a point of making characters with multiple roles specialize and remove their hybrid capabilities in order to be competitive with other classes. While this is a good thing in general - hybrids shouldn't be able to be the best simultaneously at 2 things - it has the (I hope) unintended consequence of removing some of what I consider the key benefits of playing a hybrid class. While being able to switch between tank, healer, and 2 different forms of DPS is nice, we can't effectively switch in the middle of a fight, which would seem to me to be one of the key benefits of being a shapeshifter.
The shifting of stats for bears means that bears and cats can fake it - the gear they want shares stats, with the exception of cloaks, amulets, rings, and trinkets - but you're not going to have "enough" survivability as a bear or be solid enough at DPS as a cat to make this worthwhile, and if you've taken the talents to be really great at one you're going to be missing key talents for the other, not to mention the glyph clashing. The other two forms that share key stats - boomkin and tree - cannot really share because the forms that make each great are not attainable at the same time, and even if they were, you need spirit as a tree and hit as a crit chicken, and each is not needed by the other. This means that unlike cats and bears, where the gear (if not the gems and enchants) can be shared, trees and boomkin are unable to really move between each other.
They are doing away with a number of secondary stats in Cataclysm. Perhaps some of the Druid's hybrid-ness will return, but I doubt it.
In this blogger's humble opinion, the era of the true hybrid is over, and has been for quite some time. Being one of the things that drew me to this class, I hope it can come back, but I mourn its loss and expect that it is gone for good.
Rambling the Second, on Dual-spec
On a side note, Blizzard can we please have 7 specs? I would so have one of each Druid spec and a PvP spec or three. I would even pay 1000g apiece, at least for 2 more than I have now, so I could have a cat and boomkin spec. What's that you said? No other class in the game could use more than 3, and most couldn't even really do that? So what, *I* could use it! ;)
Rambling the Third, on My Specs, My Guild, and Raids
Speaking of specs, I'm toying with a couple of ideas. While I enjoy making like a tree and leaving (ooooh, bad pun!), I have an issue that I've been pigeonholed into that role in my guild's raids (long story, if you've read my earlier posts you should have a taste) and it causes me to have an issue with gear. Specifically, I don't get the opportunity to roll on gear for my main spec.
I've attempted to discuss the issue with my guild and raid leader, and while a resolution may still be forthcoming, I'm not hopeful.
This leads me to some decision making regarding my options. The last resort, always, is to leave and try to find another guild. I'd like to avoid that if I can, because frankly I love my guild, I'm friends in real life with a number of the members, and I don't really relish the thought of trying to find a new one that I would fit in to. Since I don't want to do that, I'm left with trying to find options that simultaneously allow me to stay in the guild, continue running raids, and actually have a chance to roll on gear for my main spec sometime.
The second-most extreme (beyond /gquit) option I have thought of is removing the ability to do anything but tank by respeccing by secondary spec into another bear spec. I think I've just about ruled that out though, because I believe that would lead to no guild raids for me.
I could also forsake the 25-man raids to run my own 10-mans. However, with Wednesday and Thursday claimed for 25-man runs and Tuesday a hit-or-miss night to have the folks in my guild on to play, that seems like an iffy proposition at best. I tried running Mondays in the past, and by then most of our players have their mains locked. My Friday and weekend availability is not steady enough to run then. Plus, given that I have committed to my significant other that I will only raid on a regular basis on one night a week, that would preclude me from running in the guild 25-mans, which I also would like to continue doing.
The option that seems to present me with the best situation is to change my offspec from tree to kitty DPS. This would allow me to roll on leather gear and weapons that I would actually use for my main spec even if I'm in my offspec, because the two forms share stats now. The major downside to this plan is that I lose the flexibility of having a healing spec. If I'm not tanking I become just the meat in the room. (For all you DPS out there, I'm kidding. I love you guys.) Also, I still couldn't roll on tanking accessories for things such as the cloaks, rings, amulets, and trinkets, but I can get by with Emblem items for most of those.
Of course, this plan also requires me to do the research and take the time to learn how to be good with the class with the hardest DPS rotation in the game... or so I've been told it is. Stay tuned, my blog name may become somewhat of a misnomer.
Rambling the Fourth, on Blog Changes
Check out some changes on the site, I added some perma-links to the bear and tree primers on the right, and a real blogroll and limited the blogroll updates to the latest 5. Also, I actually touched my profile. No pics yet, but I'm working on it!
Rambling the Fifth.... ok I'm done.
As always, thanks for reading, and have a wonderful week!
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