The Mists of Pandaria talent calculators have been online for a few days. I have been a bit hesitant to do a full blown write up on them because even Blizzard considers them “pre-alpha”. With this designation it is very safe to assume that things will look drastically different than what we see now.
If this is the case, we have to ask why we are allowed to play with them at all. Some are saying that it is just an attempt to keep the Mists of Pandaria on the minds of WoW players while other MMOs are being released. Others are saying it is merely a beta test of sorts that allows players to provide some secondary feedback (via forums).
Instead of dissecting the calculators and the talents, I think it is safer just to take an overall view of what Blizzard is trying to accomplish. We know that they are intent on changing the talent system in the game and they think that talents should be “fun”. Whether or not they can pull this off is yet to be seen.
Mists of Pandaria – Talents 2.0
The Mist of Pandaria talent calculators do align with some of the announcements made at the 2011 Blizzcon. With this latest talent calculator roll-out we can see that talent points are a thing of the past. Along with the disappearance of talent points there are also no more talent ranks. Once you reach the appropriate level (every 15 levels), a selection of three talents is made available to you. From that point you can only choose one of the three options.
One of the goals of the new system is a departure from “mandatory” talents. The idea is that the player should not feel forced to choose one talent over another, sacrificing fun for utility. This is a pretty lofty goal to say the least. As always the min/maxers will hunt for the perfect spec, the question is will it be there?
Along with the new talent calculators in Mists of Pandaria, developers are also saying that changing talents will be as easy as changing glyphs. If this is the case, dual talent specialization and the new talent system will offer players endless spec combinations. On the surface this sounds intriguing but I will reserve judgment until I have hands on experience with it.
Unfortunately the talents for the Monk Class are missing. This includes Brewmaster Monk, Windwalker Monk and the Mistweaver Monk. I am sure they will be added in the near future but I was kind of looking forward to playing with them sooner. Looks like I will have a while longer to wait though.
The concept behind the new talent system appears to be sound. Of course appearances can be deceiving so implementation will be everything here. As of now, I am finding it difficult to get excited about this particular feature of the MoP expansion. What do you think? Is this a smart move for World of Warcraft or is it another nail in WoW’s coffin?
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