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August 9th, 2011, 03:08
It's hard to say since the D&D Artificer wouldn't hardly translate into an action-based MMO at all. The best I can guess is that it's a Rogue, without sneak attack or evasion. They do have high skill points, UMD, DD, OL, and so forth as class skills. They are likely to be set up more like a Bard with a limited casting aspect.

The actual release notes drop tomorrow, so I'll make my usual run down of U11 here in my afternoon (likely before you get up Corwin) after I get home from work. Assuming I don't stay home, I'm a tad bit grumpy after a root canal, and my boss already asked me to stay home since he knows I have a temper and am likely to toss the bander across the building again.

However, the reason Druid is not coming this year is due to coding; the engine Turbine uses for DDO is not designed to handle in-game transformations. At all. Notice whenever there is one in a scripted event, the game uses the "bright flash" method of obscuring it? That's because it's removing the old objects and inserting the new, transformed object, like the Cojoined Abishai Destroyer in "Chronoscope" or Crateos in "The Snitch".

Another issue is pets; Druids are traditionally a "pet" class having both an animal companion and the ability to spontaneously cast the "Summon Nature's Ally" spells (similar to a Cleric and Cure or Inflict spells, depending on alignment). DDO summons leave a lot to be desired, with only a sparse handful being worth bringing in at all.

That is the sole remaining reason Druids are not coming, and the reason they are not already in. IMO, they should implement the Spirit Shaman class from Complete Divine. It is essentially a Sorcerer variant of a Druid without wild shape abilities, that would fill the hybrid healer/nuker class slot just as well. Remember that Druids get all the cure wounds spells, as well as heal (but not Mass Heal), so they are effective healers. They also get a good many of the arcane offensive spells like Firewall, and more than a few goodies of their own like Call Lightning Storm (drools!)

Artificer is a core class in Eberron, so it fits the setting, and was expected eventually. Then again, so are Druids, but again, it's Turbine's choice of engines that screwed us over there. Druid is my favorite class, so I'm looking forward to one as well.
Oh that? It's just the cat sir.
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