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Episode 13: Set Phasers to Stunning!

Probably our most delayed yet still fairly current on news Episode yet. Join Ivaneus, Matthrim, and Drilorin as they discuss Isengard, Defending squishy little healers, and the Rise of Wheaton on this, their thirteenth episode of Through the Palantir. In addition they also go through several dev diaries and dissect them before going into the Defend the Healer segment. Defending the healer is the final installment of the combat mechanics series, which will be followed by a return to the Ettenmoors in bite-sized pieces.

You can download Episode 13 here.



  1. Great podcast guys, it's very interesting to see the kind of skills that different classes can use to respond to the proverbial feces hitting the fan.

    One thing I would say though is that there is a very clear distinction between PvMP and Raiding. In PvMP your healer can come under fire simply because the creeps feel like it, whereas in raiding it's often the result of someone losing agro. For all intents and purposes Turbine designed PvMP such that tanks don't have the toolset to be tanks out there, and are rather just another utility class.

    Which brings me to a point about Wardens, as I play a level capped Warden and there seems to be a lot of Warden-hate. In a raid if the healer pulls something from us, that means they *just* surpassed us in threat, so it's not as if they're double our threat(assuming the healer didn't, you know, start the fight like a dolt). That small gap can be easily bridged by a couple of javelins in the back, followed by Precise Blow which I can build twice in 5 seconds. Assuming it's not the boss that's plenty quick enough of a response, and if it's the boss then there's no 'oh crap' solution to a bad tank no matter the class. Alternatively, our force taunt can be built with two masteries and one shout, so while not quick it's quick enough in a situation where multiple spawns popped up and we need them on us long enough to get AOE threat on them(worked like a charm against Gorothul; we can also spam it since there's no CD).

    The other thing I'd touch on with Wardens that got bashed is our class items. Yes, there are three, but this corresponds to the three types of Carvings we can equip. No, the little bonus to one of the three is not why you'd use it. The item lasts 20s, in which time I could maybe get off 4 reasonable length gambits and save at most ~500 power. Let's look at each:

    Spear - The only reason you'd want to use this is so you could get our power regen skill 'Dark Before the Dawn' off. It adds damage to spear but that's not what you care about in this scenario, you just want power back.

    Fist - The only reason you'd want to use this is if you were zeroing out power and needed to regain threat on some mob, in which case it's the threat you care about, you wouldn't be using Fist DoTs so the damage bonus is irrelevant.

    Shield - This one is somewhat useful, if you really need to throw up some HoTs in a pinch and you get a bonus to them. But if you have no power pots and your power is down, plus you're dying, you almost are bound to be screwed anyways.

    In a raid situation either a Captain, LM, or Burg is much better than any of these consumables at solving power problems.

  2. Thanks for the reply Chris, While I believe you have valid points I'd just like to touch on a couple things first.

    First, when we talked about our emergency situation for raiding we specifically mentioned aggro wipes and getting killed then rezzed. The reason for this is because all other situations honestly aren't an emergency for the Warden.
    While I'm afraid that that concept was not clearly communicated, it was at the forefront of our minds and what we were talking about.

    As far as class items go . . . I feel that the class items must be compared to each other and not to other things. In this light I do believe that Wardens came away with the best class items from this patch. While all the other classes have items that are not useful in some situations (any damage increasing boost could potentially be bad in a raid or instance). The Warden items are all useful for anything because they all bring all gambit builders to zero power.

    This makes it so that (In my Opinion) the Warden items are almost indistinguishable from each other in terms of effect. Now if they had been made so that all spear builders/masteries etc. had zero power cost and the duration was longer, I would not have really taken issue with them, but it wasn't and so I did.

    I hope this cleared up some of the confusion and miscommunication we caused.

  3. Thanks for responding Ivaneus.

    You are of course right when it comes to the situation of an agro wipe or being killed, and as I missed that key caveat then my apologies for the mix-up. I would say more the latter than the former, since it could mean being down an insane amount of threat rather than just being near to the same threat again. We do not have tools to deal with this and the consensus on the forums is that Never Surrender is an utterly useless skill.

    About the only thing we could do, assuming we had our legendary traited, is spam it and kite(it can be built at range, but its animation makes it hard to use against a massive crit boss which is probably what killed us in the first place). In such a situation it would be a good idea to set up something beforehand with a Champ, as there's usually at least one in a raid, that they needed to start Rising and Ebbing their arses off onto you while you try and hold it forcibly and not die. This is a plausible remedy but as with all things Warden it requires being proactive, in this case proactive enough to make sure everyone knows what to do there before a rough and tumble fight. If you died early in fight you could regain threat going pure threat, if you died later the above could hopefully give the DPS long enough to wail the boss down before you kick it again.

    Regarding the class items, that's a fair point. They are basically indistinguishable and the power is the big win there. It is something where, while I doubt I'll carry them around and spam it every 3 minutes, it's definitely at least useful in any hard fight. So I suppose what really should be the subject of our ire is all the other class items which this can't be said of, as they should be risen to have common usefulness if they currently don't. Guard OP Tactics confused me, I guess maybe they couldn't think of something that wouldn't be too overpowered(pun completely intended) to have handy(ie. Remove CD of Challenge the Darkness or put on a 20s threat and defense bubble).


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  5. Love the Episodes guys! Glad to see you out in the Landy Ettenmoors.
    Yes, we Minstrels have good sustainability in fights. I believe we kill quicker than RKs with crits sooner and faster. RKs have to build up to decent hits.

    anywho, Congratz to Amdhorn on Rank 6 tonight! WOOT!