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5.0.4 Survival Guide
time:2012-09-21     Source:www.accountsbay.com

With the release of Patch 5.0.4, a number of features and changes that aren’t strictly in the continent of Pandaria will be added to the game. I’ve drummed up this guide (with the help of a lot of other people) to ensure you’re prepared for the patch, aware of how it will impact your characters and experience, and ultimately get you into and enjoying the improvements the patch brings as quickly as possible.

 

You Are Prepared!

With any large patch, you’ll want to ensure you have it pre-downloaded, and ready to start up the game for the first time when it goes live. The 5.0.4 patch has been available on our background downloader for a couple weeks now, and if you haven’t yet, you’ll want to ensure you have the majority of the patch data downloaded before its release on August 28. The Background Downloader FAQ can help answer just about any question for how to get this done. To verify you have the patch fully downloaded already, just run the BackgroundDownloader.exe found in your World of Warcraft game directory.

Once the patch releases, it’s always possible you could run into an issue when installing it. Our Patch Troubleshooting page has a number of steps you can take, as well as basic and advanced steps.

One other area that trips a lot of people up when coming into a major game revision (especially one with as many changes as 5.0.4) is out of date UI AddOns. Both WoWInterface and Curse are popular UI sites that offer up-to-date addons, and you should attempt to find addons that state they support version 5.0.4 and/or the Mists of Pandaria expansion.

If you’ve been away from the game a while, or are running into UI issues, LUA/XML error messages, or “Unknown” entities, it may be a reasonable option to just wipe everything clean and start your AddOn adventures over. Our UI Reset FAQ can help!

 

Class Changes

Certainly one of the biggest changes coming in 5.0.4 is the new talent system, and with that comes a ton of changes and new spells and abilities, but before we get to that, a number of changes have been made that can impact how you play your class. These range from minor to major, but almost all specs have altered rotations, and a few have been completely redesigned. Once the patch launches be prepared to spend a little time reacquainting yourself with each ability, and setting your action bars up. Here are just a few of the highlights to be aware of.

 Death Knight 
Presences have changed. Frost Presence now increases your Runic Power generation, and each specialization learns a passive effect that should cause that specialization to favor the corresponding Presence for general use. Necrotic Strike, as well as the new talent Death Siphon, both cost a Death Rune, meaning that they can only be used when one of your runes has been transformed to Death.

 Druid 
The Feral specialization has been split into Feral (for Cat-focused druids) and Guardian (for Bear-focused druids) specializations. Each of the four specializations has a more distinct and different set of tools, but all of the spells available to the specialization are now useful. For example, Feral and Guardian druids can cast Healing Touch for a useful amount of healing, and Balance and Restoration druids can make better use of the Cat Form and Bear Form abilities they have.

 Hunter 
There is no longer a minimum range for the class. The ranged weapon slot has been removed from the game; hunters now equip their ranged weapon in the main hand weapon slot. Hunters now benefit from Expertise as their ranged attacks can be dodged. Any type of pet can now choose any specialization (Ferocity, Tenacity, or Cunning).

 Mage: Mages received many changes intended to flesh out rotations and make them more interesting. Arcane mages now have a more complex rotation. Fire mages now have tools to control the random nature of their spells. Frost mages are now considerably stronger at sustained damage dealing, and now viable in PvE. Much of the crowd control and survivability that was unique to Frost has been spread to the whole class, or made available to all specs as talents.

 Paladin: Paladins now have several ranged abilities, though remain primarily melee combatants. In-line with streamlining raid buffs (more on that below), Auras have been removed, and the buff focus is now on Seals. Paladins can now store up to 5 Holy Power at a time, but still can only use up to 3 on each Holy Power spender.

 Priest: Mana pools are fixed for all casters (more on this below). Chakras are now more similar to warrior stances. Changes have been made to Discipline to further support the damage absorption playstyle. Shadow priests now have Shadow Orbs as a resource, which can be generated by some of their basic spells, and spent on either strong damage or crowd control.

 Rogue: Poisons are now Spellbook abilities that affect both weapons at once. Poisons are divided into two categories, Lethal (Deadly or Wound Poison) and Non-Lethal (the rest), and you may have one poison of each type active at once. Many abilities that used to be restricted to a single specialization are now talents and available to all specializations; so you can have a Shadowstepping Combat rogue or an Assassination rogue with Cheat Death. Dagger speeds have been normalized such that the niche of the “fast dagger” intended for the off-hand no longer exists. Any dagger should be fine to equip in either hand.

 Shaman: Totems no longer provide long-term buffs. Some of the old passive effects are now innately provided by the shaman. Totems instead have short-term situational benefits. In light of this the totem multidrop UI has been removed, though all totem spells are now sorted under draggable elemental flyouts in the Spellbook.

 Warlock: Each warlock specialization has a unique secondary resource which allows them temporary surges in power. Affliction warlocks focus more on layering multiple periodic damage effects, and amplifying their effects, and use Soul Shards rotationally for strong damage, or occasionally for utility as before. Demonology warlocks now have a new Demonic Fury resource, instead of Soul Shards, which is built by casting their normal spells. Destruction warlocks now use Burning Embers as a resource, which is built up slowly through casting their normal spells, and spent in bursts of massive damage. Warlocks no longer use armor spells, instead gaining additional armor and bonus health passively. All demons deal similar damage and are no longer linked to a specific spec. Doomguard, Infernal and Soulstone cooldowns reset upon wiping to a raid or dungeon boss.

 Warrior: The design of Rage has changed to function more like a valuable resource. Warriors no longer naturally gain Rage from taking damage, but instead generate Rage with their primary attacks, such as Mortal Strike, Bloodthirst, and Shield Slam. Stances also now share a single action bar, rather than changing your action bar, and abilities are no longer restricted by stance. In addition, the benefits of the stances have changed considerably, with Berserker Stance allowing the warrior to gain some Rage from taking damage, Battle Stance making the warrior gain additional Rage from dealing damage, and Defensive Stance focused on survivability.

 

New Talent System

The new talent system redefines how you create your character in World of Warcraft, while keeping the core style and feeling of each class and specialization intact. When launching the patch for the first time and hitting ‘N’ to open your talent pane, you’ll notice a number of changes.

The most obvious is a new layout for specializations, which now show the Core Abilities for each class spec. These are the defining skills that can only be used when you have that spec active.

The talent tab will show you the new talent system. You have a wide variety of useful and powerful abilities available to you regardless of your spec, but you may only select one talent from each row. Many of these tend to be old talents, sometimes with a bit of a change, while others are completely new abilities. These choices tend to be quite difficult, and you should expect to spend time considering each. But don’t get too discouraged, you can reset a single talent at any time (and anywhere) by using a Tome of Clear Mind (a tradable item crafted with Inscription), or reset all of them by visiting your class trainer.

Of course with a change this vast all talents have been reset, and you’ll be able to explore the new skills and talents as you choose them for the first time!
 

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