of the main goals Blizzard set forth for Cataclysm was to slim them
down, make spending those talent points more meaningful while still
allowing players to have fun with their talents. In the not so distant
past Blizzard released the first preview of the new
“improved” Cataclysm talent trees and to say the
least it was disappointing. The talents trees were overloaded with
passive talents still plaguing the way to more interesting talents.
Blizzard had seemingly failed in their goals and players everywhere
were faced with the prospect of using the same old talent tree design
in Cataclysm. That is, until today.

Take everything you think you know about the upcoming Cataclysm Talent
Trees and throw it out the window. In a stunning announcement today and
after much criticism from players, Blizzard has announced the biggest
changes to the talent tree system that WoW has possibly ever seen.
Continue reading with us here at Ten Ton Hammer as we give you an
overview of the coming changes:

The talent trees of Cataclysm are finally
being put on an extreme diet. To snip off the fatty excess
talent trees in Cataclysm will be reduced to 31-point talents in an
attempt to give them the feel of what Blizzard calls
“concentrated coolness“. To perform this drastic
makeover Blizzard plans to cut most passive talents from the trees
allowing players to access their talents without all the red tape.

For those of you who are fond of your passive talents don’t
fret, while passive talents will no longer make their home in the
standard talent tree they are not be pulling a complete vanishing act.
Instead players will be introduced to a new method of specialization
where once you gain you first talent point you will be required to pick
your chosen type of game play. For example a Druid at level ten will be

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If these changes stick,
talents trees will get a complete overhaul in Cataclysm.

asked to pick Feral, Restoration, or Balance.

Once chosen the passive talents will come into play as players will
gain these passive talents for free, and also gain access to a
signature ability that defines the role you have chosen. This allows
players to still have access to important passive abilities, without
actually wasting talents points on them, and also allows players to
come into their own as the specialization they choose much earlier.

But perhaps the biggest change comes with the revelation that once you
have chosen your specialization of choice you must spend the 31-talent
points in that tree before you may use points in any other tree.
However players are not stuck with just this one specialization as
dual-specialization and re-talenting will remain the same. To balance
talent points with these drastically reduced talent trees, players will
only obtain 1 talent point about every 2 levels (41 points total)
instead of every level. On the off levels players will most likely gain
a spell or ability instead of a talent point to help keep things
interesting. Finally players adventuring in areas for level 78 and
above will notice a new stat on their gear; Mastery. Mastery can be
learned from your class trainer and once learned will provide bonuses
based on the tree they are specialized in.

In my opinion these changes are some huge steps in the right direction
for Blizzard. Talent trees as they stand are cumbersome and unruly,
with useless and lame talents galore. While Blizzard’s first
preview of Cataclysm talent trees had me discouraged, after this most
recent announcement I once again have hope that the talent trees of the
future will make the game more fun, interactive, and less tiresome for
all players.

That being said the information provided in this first announcement is
rather vague, and how these changes will actually pan out in Cataclysm
remains to be seen. However for now I’m pleased with these
changes, and am looking forward to seeing them implemented in game.
Join us on our forums to share your thoughts and opinions on these
changes, or to read the changes in their entirety visit the href="">official
Blizzard post.

To read the latest guides, news, and features you can visit our World of Warcraft Game Page.

Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

About The Author

Amunet, also fondly known as Memtron, is an organic life form best known for its ongoing obsession with Blizzard Entertainment's numerous properties. To that end, Amu has authored hundreds (thousands?) of the most popular World of Warcraft guides, editorials, and Top 10 lists on the planet. When not gaming and writing, Amu is busy chasing after her three children in a perpetual loop of ongoing disaster.