Last night, Blizzard sent out yet another 250K beta-invites, and this time, I actually did get an invite. Due to the rather slow internet connection I get out here in my “neck of the woods”, it will take a little while for the download to complete, but that’s ok… the good news is that I have another week and a half off of work, so when the download is complete, I will actually have time to test out things.
And that really is my intention (well, another thing I wanna do early on is extract the music files from the data-files, just like I did with the live-game, as I love many tracks from the game-soundtrack)… the idea is to actually do what the beta-test is for, beta-testing.
For all of those who now say “D’uh”, you apparently have not been in a beta before, because there ALWAYS are a lot of people who simply log in to do what they do in the live-game as well… hang out in Stormwind and complain, over and over.
However, there ARE people who do actual testing, and my main-interests here are:
– Test the class/spec changes of my favorite classes. I am a bit worried about some of them. Sure, I hope there will be some changes, as, for example, the resto-druid is not in a good place right now IMO, but the whole talent-overhaul and changes like the ones regarding shaman-totems will need some time to get used to.
And the beta-feedback from the testers DOES help to iron out whatever is wrong, that’s what we are here for. So for those that simply complain, writing a USEFUL report in the beta-forum (“OK, I tested my spec in this instance, and here is what I think that does not work well…” instead of “BLIZZ HATES US, THEY BROKE MY CLASS! DOOM! ARMAGEDDON!”) will get you further than just sitting in SW and yelling out that you can’t wait for GW2
– Testing the professions. I am not sure whether you can yet, but ofc, it will eventually be possible. I am quite interested in the changes for inscription (research!), JC, maybe alchemy.
– Quest-testing. This is a biggie, and what I did most in the Cataclysm-beta. Blizz said they wanted to do a bit less phasing, or at least, use it a bit differently, but phasing and event-quests are always problematic, and the more people test them in beta, the better. Vehicle quests that are bugged, quest-events that fall apart when another player starts the event (that simply shouldn’t happen anymore in games these days… more of an “old days”-thing), etc.
Testing this requires you to do other things in between, trying to find out if the quest still works when you come back. Abandoning and retaking quests, even dieing while you are on it, all that and more can help to get rid of problems, to make sure everything works when the game goes live.
– The monk. I love healing, and the monk sure does have an interesting concept behind it. With my shammy, I’m not a fan of the “telluric currents spec”… the one where you spec into this talent, and can restore mana by casting Lightning Bolts. It’s some of the “healing by dealing damage” concept, but to me, it feels buggy, dodgy, not very… streamlined.
The monk really is supposed to push the “deal damage to heal” to the limit, and so, I’d like to check that out, both with an 85 monk and by leveling one from 1, and compare it to my favorite healing specs (holy priest and resto shaman).
– Healing in MoP. Related to “class/spec changes”. I just wanna see how healing works out with all the changes in MoP. I hear discipline priest isn’t feeling right yet, but holy priest seems to be doing well. I hope that it won’t be “early cata” all over. Yes, it’s supposed to be challenging, until gear upgrades make it easier, but healing early on in Cata, frankly, was frustrating, and I sure am not the only one who thinks so.
Even when trying your best to avoid overhealing, mana was such a big issue, and I don’t think needing a mana break after almost every trash pull is engaging gameplay.
I DO appreciate challenges, but when it gets totally frustrating or to the point where most of the workload rests on the healer’s shoulders, something is wrong.
– New instances. This of course relates to healing as well, but I might try to see them as a DPS char first, in order to “feel them out”, and then go back to healing. I hope they will be challenging and fun, without being “tear your hair out” difficult, like SFK or Stonecore were with PUGs. Don’t get me wrong, if you have competent players or, even better, guildies that you can coordinate your efforts with, those dungeons were doable (still aren’t fun though, esp. Stonecore), but the LFD-tool has become such a standard, and instances should cater to groups that are random and don’t communicate much. Thats the way it is, and Blizz’s approach of “If the group does things wrong, they’ll fail, so they have to use the mechanics right” kinda backfired, as there were PLENTY of votekicks for healers and tanks who didn’t do anything wrong, just because the rest of the group blamed failure on them, when it was the good ol’ “Stood in the fire” thing.
Blizz, we love challenges, but if you wanna put together random people, especially with the current attitude many players have, don’t make them as frustrating as heroic Stonecore or SFK!
So… my download is in progress, and I’ll let you know what I think! =)