Look! Up in the sky! It’s a bird… It’s a plane… No, it’s a bird… Wait – THAT’S AMANNA!!!
So I can fly, and I gotta say: it’s pretty darn cool. But we’ll get to that in a second. Following up on my previous post – you may or may not have to buy a riding skill to fly. There are four skill levels to riding: 75, 150, 225 and 300. You need 150 to be able to train the talent. So if you bought that when you hit 60, then you’re good to go. I didn’t, so I had to buy it. When you train the Flight Form talent, you automatically get the next level, 225, along with the new form. Here’s a screenshot of my log with the results of the training I bought from Isla at Wildhammer, training Flight Form at Moonglade, then getting the auto-upgrade on my riding skill.
So did I just spend 600G or save 800G?
So before we get to the good stuff, let’s get this out of the way right off the bat: You can only fly in Outland. You cannot fly away while in combat. You cannot pick herbs while in flight form. The controls for flying are different that swimming. If you die in the air too high up, you’ll have to spirit rez. You can only fly “outdoors”. You cannot eat or drink in flight form. You can’t use flight form in a battleground. You can be ranged attacked while in flight form, and you can be killed in flight form.
Whew! I just wanted to make sure you got all that because, sooner or later, you’re going to talk to someone or read an entry somewhere where Druid Flight Form is going to be bashed or trivialized. That person or persons will most likely mention one or more of the above as their rationale.
Here’s Amanna’s response to those people: Re-Roll! If you can’t find fun in this, then you have no business playing a druid. Forget the fact that you just got Expert Riding for free (saving you around 800G) – you can now FLY. Seriously, I really don’t understand people sometimes. I’m half tempted to send BRK after these people – and unless they have plenty of Sporeling Snacks on hand and know how to give a French Manicure to an 800 pound purple cat – they are going to be in big trouble.
I’ll admit the controls feel a little klunky. After so much time using right-click and drag to control my depth when in aquatic form, I just assumed it would also control my altitude while flying. This is only partly true. While you use a right-click to orient yourself down to lose altitude, you press the space bar to gain altitude. Okay, the space bar is “jump” so that kind of makes sense, but personally it would have been much easier I think just to keep it all on the right-click. This is an extremely minor point and I am not complaining.
So on to the good stuff.
Flying is a lot of fun. Yes, you’re not moving very fast. The speed is a 60% increase over running, so it’s just slightly faster than Cheetah form. You do however, have full control over where you go. You can basejump and the turn into flight form before hitting the ground. It’s an excellent scouting tool, and you get zone discovery xp just by flying over. Just like when flying transports, gathering resources will show on your mini-map – except now you can land and collect them. (While you can’t pick herbs in flight form, but you can skin, prospect and disenchant. Go figure…) You can also control your altitude, which is pretty cool.
I flew into Netherstorm and picked my first few Netherblooms this way. They give a cool buff – see the pic. From reading about them on wowhead, it appears they give a buff or debuff, it just depends when you pick it. One commentor said to wait to pick until after you see the herb pulse and you always get the buff.
Just because I could, I flew to one of those floating rocks in Netherstorm and landed on it. Just about gave myself a stomachache jumping off the thing in human form and freefalling before casting flight form. Same thing last night – I flew to the top of one of the structures over Coilfang Resevoir and jumped off. Pretty fun.
Others may discount this, but the other huge benefit to flight form is even more immersion in your character. I don’t play a role-playing server, but just having this new additional form solidifies what it means to be a druid even more. Why ride a transport griffon now when you can just fly? We’ve always been a bit, special, and now we have one more thing that solidifies that uniqueness.
So, enough from me. If you can already fly then you know what I’m talking about. If you can’t, then get off your big fuzzy butt and level up. Oh, and if you’re not a druid at all, then: nanny-nanny poo-poo. I can fly!
A good, short flight FAQ here.
Instructional video on the devastating Rawr-Bomb attack (please swallow all liquids before watching).