Regional FlagWhy should Shaman care about TotemsSource
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Cowboygus
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#0 - 2010/04/08 04:25:13 PM
...when Blizzard doesn't?

Two expansions now and the only thing we've seen happen with totems is we've watched them become generic buffs (provided easier by other classes), combined with other totems and deleted outright.

Sure, making totems a little more streamlined and easier to use was important. The new UI was awesome and gave hope that Blizzard cared about Totems. But the only news for totems in Cataclysm so far is that they will continue to be Deleted (Cleansing), Combined (Totem of Wrath) and made flavorless (Enhancing Totems talent removal).

Please Blizzard. Come up with some new totems already. Give us back some real choices when we raid. They just won't be worth the cost of mana otherwise. Especially for healers.

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Blue Poster
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#1 - 2010/04/08 04:59:09 PM
You may be the first player I've seen who likes talents that buff buffs. :) I'm not going to apologize much for our killing Enhancing Totems.

The reason I wanted to address this though was there seems to be a reaction among some players who are expecting new character levels to just bring "more" of what their character is about. Clearly an expansion must bring new totems. Clearly an expansion must bring new demons. Maybe we even add new warrior stances or new druid forms. But does a better game necessarily result from just more "stuff"? If it's stuff to do, well sure. New zones, dungeons and BGs are exciting and refreshing. But how many more buttons on your bar do you really need? A few new spells is fun, don't get me wrong, especially if it means buying space by pulling some of the older spells that didn't get much use and didn't seem like they had much of a purpose.

This is our third expansion now and we're layering a lot of extra content into an already big game. It would be easy, perhaps even lazy, to queue up the newest totem for every new expansion that comes down. But does that really make the shaman class more fun? You already have some dependable and some situational totems. Adding more totems in more and more refined and situational niches seems more aggravating to manage than anything. One of our design maxims is concentrated coolness. We'd rather have a few awesome things that a whole lot of bland things. We've all probably played RPGs (talking mostly single-player ones here) with hundreds of spells per character, but how memorable are any of those really individually?

I also disagree that all totems are just buffs at this point. We've actually done a reasonable job, IMO, of bringing the dps fire totems back to life, and we're going to continue to do so in Cataclysm. Tremor Totem is still around and virtually unique in its ability. You have Mana Tide, elementals and Earthbind.

I can understand why you might miss Cleansing Totem, because it was original and quite powerful -- too powerful in fact, in a world where we're trying to make dispelling more of a tactical decision and not something that just happens anytime you're around.