I can hear the blog world now. BLASPHEMY!
Anyways, what a weekend of furious WoW blogging debate! I speak of course, of the proposed druid tree form changes and the intensely negative reactions by the many well-respected druid bloggers who have voiced their extreme displeasure and sadness at losing their beloved tree personas.
The sincere love and genuine fondness that has been expressed for tree form makes me feel bad for even saying this...but I was REALLY excited to hear about this change. Now before I get drowned in angry leaves, I certainly don't think the many people who hate this change are wrong. Quite the opposite, I greatly respect that they are so passionate and affectionate about their iconic tree form. I tried not to read too many of the upset posts until I had gathered my own thoughts on the matter, but here's a short list of some of the druid bloggers I read that have spoken up about the change:
• Tree of Life
• Rolling Hots
• 4 Haelz
• Revive and Rejuvenate
• Big Bear Butt
• HoTs and DoTs
• Nerf this Druid
• Tree Bark Jacket
• Falling Leaves and Wings
(apparently I read a lot of druid blogs.)
Personally, I find tree form more annoying than endearing. Maybe it's because I haven't been a resto druid for that long, or because I've never really felt the attachment to the form that many other bloggers have. It could also be because I don't really take my resto druid that seriously (despite him now being my best geared character), and don't crunch any numbers or carefully analyze his gear, etc. Regardless, I just really dislike tree form, for a number of reasons.
(It IS strange that tree form is the only druid form to get this special treatment, but honestly I'm not really concerned about that because I don't use them anyways.)
Naked Tree is Naked
See the picture above? That's Mardak after a heroic Jaraxxus kill. I try to take screenshots NOT in tree form because I like to see my gear.
One of the most common complaints about druids in general is how you can't see your hard-earned equipment while shapeshifted. I worked hard for that gear, but I can't see it in action? To me, this has always been a confusing and unfair element of playing a tree. Yeah, it's meaningless and is just little shiny pixels that sparkle and wave in the air. But so is tree form! Also, this combines very badly with my own carelessness - on numerous occasions I've accidentally healed a fight with a fishing rod or lance equipped. (the worst was an entire ICC10 first-wing run without a weapon equipped.) This wouldn't happen if I could SEE my weapon!
Ugly as the Devil's Face
Visually, I find the tree form itself grotesque. Weird spiky vine feet, broccoli "hair", a stump-butt that drags on the ground, and an ugly old-man protruding chin. I mean, look at Kae's stickman tree - that's a cute, fun healing tree. This...thing...in the picture above is anything but. It's also frustrating when I'm sitting down to drink and everyone else continues on simply because they didn't notice (the tree eating animation looks virtually the same as a tree standing idly.) It also bugs me that there's no visual difference between Night Elf and Tauren tree forms. I never did understand why bears and cats got race-specific models but Boomkin and Trees didn't. /sad
Tired of TransformingI find it quite annoying having to shift out of tree form to cast certain spells. Granted, Blizzard could have fixed this by going the other way (by allowing more spells to be cast while in tree form) but regardless, I often find myself momentarily annoyed at having to shift out to root or cyclone something (blood beasts on Saurfang, mind-controlled players on Deathwhisper-25, soul fragments on Bronjahm). And of course, if I want to DPS a little it's also back to tauren form. My BC-level disc priest can throw out a SW:Pain or Devouring Plague if things are slow, yet my ICC-geared TREE can't even cast entangling roots on someone. The ultimate irony.
Despite my excitement to be rid of tree form, I kind of hope the change doesn't go live, simply because there are so many resto druids out there who love and cherish their tree forms that would be devastated if they lost them. I'd rather be my awesome decked-out tauren than an ugly tree, but I'm not going to lose any sleep over it. And I get the feeling that most of the people who like the announcement are like me - mostly unconcerned one way or the other. Do the right thing, Blizzard. Listen to the weeping willows and let us keep tree form. The rest of us will grumble a bit but honestly, we don't really care.
Keeva has created a picture for upset druids to use to show their love for trees. Expect to see this a LOT on druid blogs over the next while!