Monday night I decided to test out the DK Dual Wielding ability. I equipped Geistig with a Grunt’s Waraxe once she became Honored with Thrallmar, and an Uncommon sword whose name I did not record. The results were of course, epically awful. Gestig was almost destroyed by one of Hellfire Peninsula‘s overgrown goretusks. Safe to say that mid slaughter I swapped back to my Greataxe of the Ebon Blade. Since I’m wickedly stubborn I realized that mixing a Rare item with an Uncommon item probably doesn’t make up for loss of my Rare Greataxe. Considering the amount of damage the Greataxe can dish out I reasoned that I would probably only replicate similar damage if I utilized two Rare items to Dual Weild over my mix matched combo. I picked up another Grunt’s Waraxe from the provisioner but had to log out before I could test my results. It turns out however that Geistig’s less than stellar Dual Wielding performance actually had less to do with the weapons themselves and more to do with lacking talent points to make efficient use of both weapons.
I attempted to log in yesterday morning to compare Geistig’s Dual Wielding performance with the two Rare items. I forgot it was Tuesday, all realms were of course down for maintenance. It did however give me a chance to post a blog entry I’d been working on for quite some time. I had to wait until I returned home from work to begin the testing. With the two weapons equipped Geistig did move a lot faster, but mobs attacked using the two weapons did not seem to die any faster than when using the Greataxe. While Geistig’s performance with the two Waraxes was vastly better than her performance with the Rare/Uncommon combo from Monday night, it appeared as though switching over to Dual Wield exclusively would increase the time it takes to grind through mobs rather than the reverse. Seeing as how I’m attempting to level at least ONE of my characters to 70 preferably all the way to 80, any slowdowns would only frustrate the process and infuriate me.
So last night I ran through Hellfire Ramparts and the first few pulls of Blood Furnace (where the group’s only healer, a Paladin, dropped out ouf the group). I have learned that while all DK groups can make pretty short work of the bosses, they can also lead to quite a bit of down time while either waiting for a corpse runner or just having to bandage/eat to restore health. Arguably using the DK Frost Aura and the Unholy talent Bone Shield I took less damage than some of the other DK’s in the group. A level 59 we were running with in Ramparts pretty much died on every other pull, probably because he had the lowest health rating, he drew the most threat. But I could be mistaken. I usually avoid running instances on weeknights, even quest dungeons. Usually because I just don’t have a lot of time to play and also because pug groups can be such a pain in the can. Since a guild mate was willing to run on both, it just made sense to get these quests out of the way, ding 62 (yay!) and trade out some of my DK blues for Outland blues.
Through both instances I used the Greataxe exclusively. Since I wasn’t sure whether or not I’d sustain sufficient DPS using the two Waraxes and I don’t like to test theory when staring at an elite, I chose to stick with the sure thing. However after hitting 62 I did start to apply my talent points to the Blood DK talent tree as suggested by [toolbox:jack]. Since I’d also read about the importance of Parry for Warriors, I figured that I’d put my first point in Blade Barrier. Since Blade Barrier increases Geist’s chances to Parry blows it would mean that she takes a little less damage. I figured I’d also give the dual wield another try since the Blood talent tree includes other talents that boost the ability. I have to say that I was QUITE surprised. By the end of the evening I had a hard time logging off. I even completed the quest Natural Remedies alone (a quest which includes killing a level 63 elite and hopefully not running into the other level 63 elites wandering the area). I ran through the remaining quests in Hellfire Peninsula (including rescuing that annoying Blood Elf pilgrim). Geistig ran through the mobs like a lawnmower through grass. The whole time I’m thinking to myself, “wow, so this is why people roll a Rogue.” Well that and giggling inanely.
So my initial assessment that the weapon quality was the soul reason for Geistig’s poor performance when Dual Wielding was pretty off to say the least. While DK’s can Dual Weild perfectly well with out investing talent points to boost the ability, they kill much more efficently when the ability is boosted via talent points allocated to the Blood tree. As Geistig progresses I’m excited to see just how the talent points play out. For the first time I’m also actually excited about plowing through the Outland quest lines and heading to Northrend. Admittedly I was not too excited about heading out to Northrend with Strategeist. While I am able to level fairly well as Shadow, Strategeist’s low hit points and lack of crowd control really makes leveling her class solo quite a challenge. Since I’m not really one to spend a lot of time grouping for quests running with a Priest is tedious at best. Geistig however, well she’s a one woman butcher shop. I’ve never played a class in which I do not fear going any where and completing any quest. Sure on the group quests I tend to die a bit more, but I like the fact that I CAN run solo and I haven’t had trouble finding groups when necessary.
Although arguably I do need to remember to tone it down a bit. I pulled a total jerk move yesterday and killed an elite while another player was on a quest to kill the elite. I apologized but I was still told to randomly generated symbol off. While honestly I can understand that person’s frustration (I spent about an hour trying to get Gillrog’s eye), I felt that was a little harsh, that doesn’t mean I didn’t earn it though. So I’m tuning my “assistance” radar accordingly. /Sigh, well you live, you learn, and then you roll a Death Knight.