Badges badges badges… No, wait!
Yes, I know everybody is up in arms about the Raiding and Progression changes in Cataclysm. I’m not. The sky is not falling here. In fact, it’s a lovely shade of deep blue without a cloud in sight. Or maybe it is falling, but I won’t be able to tell until the buildings around start getting crushed by the celestial dome.
All I have is a 10-man raid that gathers up once a week for three and a half hours of delicious, delicious killing. My only possible issue* with the raiding changes would be that it’s going to be hard to keep a mostly Alt-based raid in Cataclysm, as some people will be using alts exclusively for either raid size (although I find that a little doubtful). Finishing our Ulduar trial run and getting to ICC is our priority now.
With that out of the way, the PvP and PvE currency changes are what I’m actually looking forward to.
That’s a very elegant way of doing things: instead of having half a dozen different badges that become either completely or partially useless if you can’t spend them in time for the next Tier, all you have are two Tiers. If you can’t get to the point you can actually spend your points for the current High Tier, they get folded back to the Low Tier when the new level of buy-able gear shows up. In the end, you’re not losing anything. In fact, since the prices are going to be converted to the lowest gear, it’s very likely that at the beginning of a new Tier, you’d be able to but the past-yet-recent tier right away.
I’m only a little disappointed that we’ll go to a Points-based system instead of keeping our Emblems. I liked seeing only two-digit numbers in my PvE gear vendor window, instead of the five digits the PvP vendor threw on my face. But that’s simply cosmetic.
If I’m getting this right, an accurate scenario would be a bit like this: Tier 11 drops as a lead-in for Cataclysm. Instead of adding the mandatory Emblem of Blowing Stuff Up, Blizzard simply turns all the current Emblems of Frost into Emblems of Triumph, changes the prices so everything that used to cost Emblems of Frost now cost Triumph, and have the new Tier cost Emblems of Frost. The new bosses are also the only ones that drop Frosts. Voilà, instant new tier of gear.
No more fiddling around converting your Emblems three times just to be able to buy heirlooms, no more Emblems of Valor sitting uselessly in your bags. I just hope Blizzard will also reduce badge prices on lower-level gear once the new tier drops. Seriously, 60 Emblems of Triumph (that I have to downgrade twice!) for an ilvl 213 Wrist piece?!
Also, someone give Blizzard some better ideas for their new Point names. Heroism and Valor are sooo 2009.
* That particular issue is balanced by the fact we’ll have a lot less gear inflation come Cataclysm. I, for one, welcome our new 10/25-man overlords.