Trawling through MMO-Champion today, I found this little nugget of Mists of Pandaria-related joy.
So you might have heard for Cooking in Mists of Pandaria we will have specializations. At the moment we’re looking at around 5 branches of cooking, for example: broiling, steaming…etc.
Each of these specializations will focus on a particular stat. So let’s say the Steaming specialization allows you to create Agility food. A rogue would find that very interesting, and would probably want to max that one out first. At which point, said rogue would be able to create Agility buff feasts for groups. Cool, huh? But worry not, once you max out in one specialization, you can then work on the other specializations.
Maybe they’re gonna make it take ages to fully train all of them.
Well, maybe not ages. But it does mean that until enough time passes for you to train all specializations, you need to—er—specialize. Actually it’s the way for other crafting professions too. For example, my jewelcrafter specialized in spell related stat recipes first, since of all my multitude of alts, I prefer my casters. Eventually, of course, she learned many more recipes and of course so did other crafters, so the market changed.
Specialisation (yeah, British spelling, get over it) huh? Let’s break it down and look at it in more detail. I know it’s not yet set in stone but hey, it’s fun to speculate.
For a raid to benefit from the +stat food buff, there are currently a couple of ways to do so – individual food buffs and raid-wide food buffs (feasts).
Do note that I haven’t included all the Cataclysm buff foods. I’ve just included the ones that would be truly considered for end-game raiding. Sorry Crocolisk Au Gratin, you just didn’t make the cut.
- Beer-basted Crocolisk +90 strength
- Blackbelly Sushi +90 parry
- Fortune Cookie +90 of a useful stat (only picks from strength, intellect, agility and dodge)
- Lavascale Minestrone +90 mastery
- Mushroom Sauce Mudfish +90 dodge
- Severed Sagefish Head +90 intellect
- Skewered Eel +90 agility
As you can see there’s the usual suspects in terms of primary stats as well as a few options for tanks depending on their gearing strategy. In order to be able to make these fine food items, a player would simply need 500 skill in cooking and 3 x Chef’s Awards (per recipe ) that are obtained by doing daily quests given by the fishing trainer NPCs in the capital cities.
The only viable feast option in this expansion is the Seafood Magnifique Feast, obtained via the That’s A Lot of Bait guild achievement. Like the Fortune Cookie, it grants a player +90 of a ‘useful’ stat which, in Blizzard terms, translates into agility, dodge, strength or intellect.
Let’s have another look at the blue post.
At the moment we’re looking at around 5 branches of cooking, for example: broiling, steaming…etc. Each of these specializations will focus on a particular stat. So let’s say the Steaming specialization allows you to create Agility food.
He mentions 5 branches of cooking. Not 3, not 4 but 5. I also realise that he absolves himself of liability by including the word ‘around’ but 5? It’s almost a given that we will get a branch per primary stat so that’s 3 out of the way, now what about the other 2? I was toying with the idea that the other two would be tank-related but upon closer inspection I noticed that on the agility food, Sea Mist Rice Noodles, there was no mention of stamina.
Looking at some of the data on today’s MMO-Champion post I also noticed this - Chun Tian Spring Rolls that give +450 stamina. What does this mean? This means that increasing stamina via a food buff will now be an active choice rather than a passive one. At first glance one might say that it isn’t really a big deal and that no one cares about stamina anyway which are fair points and while stats are stats, it can be argued that the +90 stamina that we get in the current expansion doesn’t really make or break a fight. Here’s my question – what if it did?
While it may be more common to disregard the need for stamina-specific food, it should be pointed out that doing so would be thinking with a Cataclysm mindset. These are changes for Mists of Pandaria and perhaps us WoW players should approach this with a bit more of an open mind than normal. I might be thinking outside the box but hey, what if there were fights in which stamina would benefit the raid more than the other primary stats. I’m thinking this for more than just tanks by the way so I’m talking about a rogue potentially choosing to have +450 stamina over +300 agility. It may sound far-fetched but it could be a possibility don’t you think?
In terms of tanks, in the game’s current state it’s fairy easy to reach CTC cap without any Heroic gear and in the case of my paladin, it’s doable without any really hard-to-get item (but again, don’t forget that we’re currently on the last tier of the Cataclysm expansion). If I was faced with a similar situation in MoP, this could mean that I could gear my tank and work towards my CTC target without factoring in any avoidance from food buffs which allows me to, just like those blessed with super-fast metabolisms, eat whatever I want. In this case that would be stamina food! (or strength food if I want to aim for elite ranks on World of Logs?!)
Feasts for everyone
At which point, said rogue would be able to create Agility buff feasts for groups. Cool, huh? But worry not, once you max out in one specialization, you can then work on the other specializations.
Agility buff feasts? It would then be fair to assume that there would also be strength, intellect and tank (parry/dodge/mastery) feasts. So far, feasts have never been stat-specific so again, this leads me to question why?
Looking at the same MMO-Champion post I also came across these two entries, Pandaren Banquet and Great Pandaren Banquet. The tooltips currently say that they both provide +275 stat but I’m convinced that this is a typo and that the Great Pandaren Banquet provides +300 stat, in line with the proposed food tiers of +275 followed by +300. The issue is not the tooltip but the pure existence of the two feasts. On one hand we’re told that we’ll be getting a stat-specific feast (alright, I use the word ‘told’ very loosely) and on the other we’ve got a one-size-fits-all feast which would supersede it. Same question again – why?
One theory of mine is that the recipe for the Great Pandaren Banquet will be a lot harder to obtain than the one for the Seafood Magnifique Feast. This will mean that there will be a lot more time between when people use their individual food and the feasts and this is where the stat-specific feasts come in. I imagine them to be fairly easy to obtain compared to the panda banquets and a lot more social interaction to take place as a result as same-stat users huddle together to sort their food buffs out for the next raid. What a pleasant thought.
Another theory is to change cooking so that it will take up a more active role in raids. Currently, all a raid needs be it 10 or 25-man is one guy (or girl!) to be able to prepare a Seafood Magnifique Feast in order for everyone to get their dose of +90 stat and stamina. It’s more of a chore than anything ‘cos that person has to mess around gathering the materials from the guild bank or, even worse, still have their Chef’s Hat on when the boss is pulled! The datamine entry for the panda feast doesn’t include the ingredients required to prepare it and I have a slight suspicion that those ingredients will consist of one of each of the stat-specific feasts. Suddenly those Fathom Eels at 400g a stack don’t seem so bad.
A guildie of mine, Exeqt, pointed out that the health and mana regen of this new food is now over 10 seconds as opposed to 30.
Think of what effect this will have in PvP. Currently a few ticks of mana/health regen is enough to turn the battle in an arena fight. It’ll be sick.
Off-topic, this quote is funny ‘cos he doesn’t really do battlegrounds let alone arena so the superpvphero image he’s portraying doesn’t really stick.
Going back on topic, PvP aspect aside I’m quite happy about this change. As a non-healing class I’ve always found it quite annoying having to wait 2 hours (ok I exaggerate slightly) for the food’s health regen to fill me up. I don’t care about you arena junkies, I’m happy and I’ll cry if I want to.
Let’s have a look at some numbers. First of all, I’d like to point out that for the purpose of the following calculations I will be disregarding the stat food as I don’t think it will be practical for people to use the stat food as regen food, especially during the early days of MoP.
Let’s use the humble Buttery Wheat Roll, currently available from all good innkeepers across Azeroth, as an example.
It restores 96,000 health over 30 seconds. 96,000 / 30 = 3,200 health per second (3,200 / 96,000) * 100 = 3.33% of the food's total regen per second
Now let’s compare this with a non-stat food from Mists of Pandaria such as the Pandaren Meatball (stat food was excluded because it would regen 200,000 / 300,000 health per second as per current tooltips).
It restores 100,000 health over 10 seconds 100,000 / 10 = 10,000 health per second (10,000 / 100,000) * 100 = 10% of the food's total regen per second
That’s a 300% increase in the food’s effectiveness in terms of regen.
As of today, the expected health and mana pools of a level 90 character aren’t really known so that’s still to be discovered. If we base the Cataclysm > MoP transition on the Wrath of the Lich King > Cataclysm, we can expect to have 3-4 times more health than we currently have now (possibly even more as a tank). Using a finger-in-the-air guide of 140k hit points as an average for current classes (excluding tanks) this tier, that would put us on 420k – 560k (490k average) by the time MoP (final / advanced tier) hits us. Time for more numbers. Does this count as theorycrafting?
Let’s disregard passive regeneration for the following calculations.
Starting off with the current food:
140k health and 3.2k hp/sec food 140,000hp / 3,200 = 43.75 seconds to fully regen (3,200 / 140,000) * 100 = 2.29% of total health per second 43.75 seconds / 30 = 1.46 = 2 food to fill you up (rounded)
And for the MoP food:
490k health and 10k hp/sec food 490,000hp / 10,000 = 49 seconds to fully regen (10,000 / 490,000) * 100 = 2.04% of total health per second 49 seconds / 10 = 4.9 = 5 food to fill you up (rounded)
As we can see from the above calculations the time taken to regen to full from next to no health is almost identical in both cases with the % of total health per second being marginally less efficient in the MoP food. The drastic change is the amount of food required to regen to full with us needing 2.5 times the number of food items in MoP. That’s a quarter of a stack of food to regen every time (from very low health).
Suddenly the effectiveness of the food in itself doesn’t seem so great huh?
All of those boring numbers has put me in the mood for a slight rant. In the current tier we have two food items – Severed Sagefish Head and Delicious Sagefish Tail. Now, I’m not much of a Michelin star chef but I’m pretty sure that you should be able to make these dishes using the same sagefish. Well, we can’t as we currently need a whole sagefish to make either one or the other. Where does the tail go when we make the head? What about the head when we make the tail? Talk about waste. What kind of message are we sending the the youth of today Blizzard? Should we just eat the skin of the Colonel’s chicken and leave the rest behind? Does the fact that it’s the best part make it right?