Thursday, July 4, 2013

Mistweaver

Like everyone else, I rolled [hah, pun] a Monk last year, and have been leveling him on and off since then. I tried each of the specs early on, eventually finding the healing spec, Mistweaver, was the most interesting by far, and I have had an absolute blast leveling through Dungeon Finder [since healers are usually the bottleneck in leveling dungeons].

Mistweaver Monk is the best implementation of melee healing I've ever played, with an amazing variety of abilities that create room for several completely viable playstyles. The option to swing your focus from pure healing to damage/healing makes you a much more useful party member by only healing as much as is needed and putting the rest of your resources into damage, and the transition between these two focuses is very, very smooth. The player is also given some great tools to maximise resource use between healing and damage, and what that all translates into is a very high skill-cap.

The class feels very active, in the same way I've said before that the Warrior tank class feels very active compared to the other tanks. My best guess for where this feeling comes from is that most of the time you will quickly notice two or maybe three ways to deal with a given situation, and actively choose the most effective, or perhaps the most fun. :)

Having a channel lead into an instant cast spell is the most awesome and innovative implementation of a "fast expensive heal" I've seen in the game so far. For all other healing classes it's a 1.5-second cast heal, which is usually not significantly faster than the next-fastest heal, but can't really be shortened or it would introduce a severe haste DR.

I've yet to really figure out how to use Healing Sphere. I think for a WoW spell it's a pretty radical design-- you toggle the spell on [like Keg Toss], and place Healing Spheres with the mouse on a 0.5-second global CD, which deal a not-insignificant amount of healing and will hit the people who need it.

At this point it's still really hard to tell what this stuff is going to look like at endgame. The dungeons I'm healing all seem very trivial, and when my weakest channel heal can tick for as much as half of a tank's health, I get the feeling I might be overgeared for the content.

I've also noticed that moving into Wrath content, DPS seems more and more to be holding their own against me, usually beating my damage on boss fights. Even though I am doing two jobs at once, seeing myself at the bottom of the damage meter is still just a little bit demoralising.

Since I wrote the bulk of the above, I've actually race changed my Monk to a female human, named Kiddow. I got tired of the panda very quickly, and while brainstorming, the idea of an homage to [ripoff of] Beatrix Kiddo from Kill Bill was one I found extremely resonant. So I'm playing her as a late-30s, hardened warrior, who has aged somewhat, but so far lost very little of her agility. She's extremely disciplined and patient thanks to years of intense training to master the forces of nature.

Okay give me a break I'm still a newbie at this.

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