So I was about as wrong as I could possibly be on this one. Patch 3.2 hits today, which I have to admit is at least mildly exciting. Something is better than nothing. The patch notes are here, but there are enough changes that it's easy to get lost. What's the fallout for us?
Your brief to-do list when you log on tonight:
-the new 5-man
-the new raid
-the new BG
-new dailies (blech)
-start gathering badges
1) New Battleground: which is awesome. All old BGs are now faster, and reward you extra for defending.
2) New raid: Only one boss will be available today, in only the normal difficulty in 10 and 25 mode. In the Northrend Beast encounter, you'll fight a succession of 3 battles: first against a minotaur, then "Not One, but TWO Jormungar Worms!!!!", then a giant Yeti. Early reports from the PTR give the impression that the strategies are, respectively: 1) tank switch, 2) kite while mixing the two types of spit, and 3) tank and spank. Now that's raiding excitement. Guide here.
3) New dungeon: normal mode drops Naxx 10-level loot, heroic drops Naxx 25-level loot. Trinkets are in normal mode, weapons on heroic. You'll be running this every day on every one of your alts. Heroic also drops Champions Seals, which were previously only available through Argent Tourney dailies.
4) Epic Gems: They have 4 more stat points than rare gems. You can get them by prospecting titanium, 10-20 heroism badges (depending on color), 10k honor, or an alchemy transmute on a 20-hour cooldown. My prospector's entire bank stocked with titanium is betting that prices will be INSANE for the next few days, so I hope you have some honor/badges saved up. Unless you are on my server. Then I advise you to buy gems at horribly marked-up prices. Patterns require quite a few JC daily tokens to get, so also expect patterns to be rare. If you need a non-traditional cut (something other than spellpower or strength, etc) then arrange for a JC guildie to pick up that pattern. Tell them they'll make money on the niche market while everyone else is flooding the AH with Runed gems. Guide here.
5) Badges, badges, badges MUSHROOM MUSHROOM: Everything in the game, from heroics on up, now drop only Conquest badges. The only exception is the new Coliseum raid, which drops a new Triumph Emblem which can be used on tier 9-level gear. No more heroism or valor, though you can still trade down for them at the vendors and all of that loot remains in the game. So now you can buy a selection of tier 8.5 by running just about anything. Once you have all that, trade down and buy some tier 7.5 with valor tokens. The daily regular dungeon quest now gives 1 Conquest emblem, while the daily heroic now gives two Triumph Emblems (so you can even get tier 9 without raiding! If you do dailies every day for two months! Yay...for...casuals? I guess?)
6) Respec your DK: All DKs got their talents reset today. Go blood or frost, depending on whether you want to dual wield or swing a 2-hander. Frost is now the Dual-Wield tree, so don't bother with it unless you have two decent, slow weapons for dps or 2 nice tanking weapons for...erm... tanking (though be advised that as a dual-wielding tank, your threat will be in the pooper because tanking weapons tend to be fast and Threat of Thassarian doesn't apply to Rune Strike). Since you can't use Rune of the Stoneskin Gargoyle on one-handers, your survivability should be similar with 2 tanking weapons as it is with 1 dps two-hander. Also, DK tanking got nerfed hard, particularly with Icebound Fortitude having its cooldown double to 2 minutes. Gone are the days of them being so OP that they are the only option for some of the Ulduar hard modes like Iron Council and Vezax (though they still may be favored for Vezax due to their free self-healing). Unless you are in love with dual-wielding, go Blood for DPS, mainly because it takes advantage of all the armor penetration gear dropping in Ulduar, the new raid, and the new 5-man. On top of that, Unholy is a complete mess right now, with DPS DKs actually dropping Scourge Strike in favor of Obliterate and stuff. I'd recommend you don't even bother with it.
7) Dailies (if you're into that kind of thing): I'm sick of dailies, so I'm not really up to speed on this one. The gist is that if you already have exalted with AC and every one of your faction cities, then you unlock even more dailies which allow you to pimp out your squire (in the sense that you equip him with upgrades, not the sense that you sell his innocence to pedophiles) and stuff. Unless you main is an engineer, this is worth doing on your main because it unlocks a mobile bank/mailbox/vendor. Guide here.
8) Professions: Speaking of engineers, you got buffed. Hurray! Start farming mechanical mobs in Storm Peaks for a butler recipe, and enjoy your AH in Dalaran. As for the rest of you, your profession bonuses got upgraded to match the new epic gems. JCs may need to resocket some of their Dragon's Eyes, as they are no longer prismatic. Alchemists have a new reusable arena flask to make. The rest of us probably won't have to do anything new.
9) Ret paladins: the rest of you can dismiss what I'm about to say as gibberish: use Seal of Vengeance/Corruption (Seal of Blood/Martyr has been deleted from the game), save your Art of War procs for Exorcism because they now make it instant cast (otherwise it has a 1.5 sec cast time now)
10) FINALLY implemented new feral forms and totem interface! Congratulations to all of your druids and shamans out there. You deserve it after suffering through tauren cat form and having to find bar space for all those totems so you can put all 4 out every time the group moves.
11) Dungeon ID extensions: Now you can extend your raid lockout for another week. You can do this as many times as you want. You decide on your own to do it, so you can't get stuck to an ID by a raid leader. You can even extend recently expired IDs before you get saved to a new one, or choose to un-extend a raid ID you already extended if you didn't do anything new in the instance that would get you saved to it! This is a really great change.
Enjoy the patch!
PS: Special Bonus: For a limited time, there are new orphans in Dalaran. Vanity pets, go!