Tier 13 first glance

We haven’t been able to see anything regarding what our Tier13 set will look like – my idea is that it’s either very awesome, or it’s late because the designers got sent back to the drawing board at a late stage in development. I’ll keep track of what I can find in this post – which for now will be the set bonii that got released. As it stands now, these might make it to the PTR, but I don’t believe we will be seeing them on live, they seem much too powerful for that. Then again, seeing as tier pieces are no longer available for Valor Points, it stands to reason that they can now be a bit more powerful as they are out of the hands of the average player.

2piece bonus: Shadow Word: Death deals an additional 55% damage, and you no longer take damage from your own Shadow Word: Death when the target fails to die.

Clearly a winner. Currently, we need to use SW:Death to keep up our mana (although higher level gear means you need it less often than before) but it deals really bad damage. And once a boss gets below 25% health, it deals massive damage, and we glyph it so we can double-tap it. This scenario is likely to kill us if we’re not careful, especially if we, say, roll a string of crits on Baleroc with the Tormented debuff (protip: don’t).

Regardless of DPS increase, this set bonus fixes a quality of life issue for us, and I can only hope it will be part of our talents at some point, once the T13 is a forgotten monument.

4piece bonus: Your Shadowfiend and Shadowy Apparitions have a 100% chance to grant you 3 Shadow Orbs each time they deal damage.

This seems to be an experiment in increasing our Orb generation – unless they plan to eventually remove it from our SW:P ticks (since we can multi-dot and generate a lot of orbs) and this is a prelude to a change in our Mastery and how Orbs are generated. Otherwise, it seems rather superfluous. We cast MB once we have 1+ Orb, and I never seem to lack Orbs. It would make sense then that Blizzard would experiment with different ways and rates of Shadow Orb gains (as they have with Paladins and Holy Power) to achieve a balanced result.

On the whole, I have the opinion that our set bonuses are a nice DPS increase, but they feel like they are meant to fix flaws in our class and talents. Eliminating the outdated backlash damage mechanic, for instance, and the irony of requiring to use a mana-regen tool that deals bad damage or even has a chance to kill you also be our Execute. It doesn’t feel like something exciting and new, just clinically advantageous.

Armor set art

Sadly we have no clue yet what it’s going to look like – with luck we will end up with an awesome set like Paladins and Shamans – or we could have ” focus laid on a particular ability we got in Cataclysm”  and end up like Holy Priests. I will overlook it if we get Tyrael-style wings and the overuse of cloth in the last Paladin set is compensated by giving us a more armored look. After all, we are taking hits too.

Edit: It’s here. Be afraid of the terrors of the terrible masked avenger! Do you remember the Raid in september?

On one hand, I appreciate the high quality of the armor pieces themselves. They look crisp, there’s a good amount of detail in them and they do have the necessary creepy factor for Shadow Priest robes. But then again…it’s just silly really. What’s it based on, now? Paladins had their tier designed around their Guardian of Ancient Kings, and Blizzard said more sets were designed with their new Cataclysm abilities in mind.

So what’s this piece of Fawksian jestership representing? Inner Will? Leap of Faith? Mind Spike?

Fortunately it’s not as bad as Tier 11, where we were forced to run around with Lightwells on our shoulders. Is it hot? No. I don’t particularly like it. It looks more like the new conquest point PvP gear should look like, in my opinion. The gold one looks awesome for a healer, but knowing our luck, the white one in the middle is for Shadow Priests and the red one to the right for healer priests.

Ah well, there’s always next expansion I guess. Or perhaps mooch off the mages and get offset pieces from the Timelord Regalia.

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One Response to “Tier 13 first glance”

  1. It turns out the T13 might be somewhat more palatable than shown in the pictures. After some digging, I discovered that checking out the T13 sets in the modelviewer of wowhead actually produces a half-mask on the face, down to the nose.

    And not a bland full-face mask without expression. Draenei Female would look like this:

    http://imgur.com/wMJPNwMJPN

    My idea is that the MMO-Champion one was photoshopped for clarity, and the lower face (with beard) of the model underneath it got included in the color wash, or the male models have beards while the female ones do not.

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