World of Warcraft – Edge Character Optimization Addon Review
EDGE is the newest product release from Manaview, the team behind BOOSTER and TYCOON. Where the latter two addons exist to address more specific needs (leveling, making gold), this one is touted as actually being usable by any WoW player.
With 11 million subscribers, that’s a pretty large bill to serve. So does EDGE live up to the hype? I got my hands on a copy to see for myself:
EDGE is pretty simple to figure out. It’s actually more streamlined than TYCOON and BOOSTER, so if you had any problems with those products that shouldn’t be an issue here. After downloading the product (and Manacore if you don’t have that) you just run the Manaview Updater to check for any updates, then fire up World of Warcraft.
Since EDGE is supposed to work for any class and any purpose, I decided to use it on my Level 61 Worgen Druid I haven’t touched since finishing the new quests from 1-60. The thought of questing through Hellfire Peninsula again makes me a little sick, so I wanted a way to level through the Random.
Dungeon Finder as a tank.
Keep in mind I’d never tanked before; hadn’t even thought of a bear spec, since mine was just full-on cat for leveling. But after logging in my Worgen I clicked the EDGE button on the Manacore frame, selected Leveling as my purpose, and took a look through the options it gave me.
Much to my surprise, there was a Feral Bear Dungeon Leveling spec, so I selected that and decided to trust it on auto-spec. After I had that all sorted out, it told me the best glyphs to get (since I couldn’t get all of them) that would help me most while tanking dungeons of my level. It also gave me a strategy for tanking singles and multiples. I took a few notes, but I knew I’d forget later.
Before queueing for a dungeon, I took a look through Edge and found the spec for raiding Bears. It looked different than my leveling spec, and I wanted to know why this was. Common sense of course says top level Bears need different stuff, but I wanted a conclusive answer, and I also wanted to test the support for this product.
I sent off an email and queued for my first dungeon. Following the advice in the EDGE strategy, I was able to hold aggro decently. At first I thought I was just doing terrible because one of the Death Knights would have it all the time, but I looked over and saw he was in Blood Presence, so I can’t blame the addon for that. I also can’t blame it for the lumps I took while learning, and the bit of time I used to re-reference the Strategy pane.
All in all, my dungeon was successful and thanks to my rested XP I made about half a level from one 20 minute dungeon run. Not too shabby!
I ran a few more, and right after hitting 62 I checked my email, just in case. Someone from Manaview had already responded to me:
First of all, thanks for trying out EDGE! Your question about the Bear dungeon spec was forwarded to me, as I helped design the spec you’re currently using. I raid as a Bear and I’ve also leveled two Bears via the RDF. Back when I was looking for specs for my first Bear, all anyone had was just a makeshift Cat spec, or a high-end Bear spec. Neither of those work very well for tanking dungeons.
There’s a lot of similarities, but the key difference is trading out some survivability for more damage, which in turn means more threat. This is the biggest problem Bears face while leveling up. Every healer can keep you alive with their eyes closed, but competing with heirloom-geared DPS for threat is incredibly frustrating. So the dungeon leveling Bear gets full King of the Jungle for a damage boost on Enrage, which you should be using on cooldown like the Strategy says. You also get Primal Madness to help with the issue of being rage starved at lower levels.
What you lose is Perseverance – a must-have talent for raiding Bears – and 1 point from Infected Wounds. Both of those help keep you alive, but again: You don’t have much trouble with that while leveling through dungeons, especially if you’ve got heirlooms.
I hope that helps answer your question. Let me know how the leveling goes!”
I expected some canned response, and maybe a “it’s this way because it is,” but I ended up getting a detailed explanation of not only the differences between the specs, but why they exist. Needless to say, I was pretty happy with that answer and it helped make my EDGE experience a very positive one.
Let’s get down to the nitty gritty here, though. My rating:
Interface 4.5 / 5
The interface is sleek and clean. It’s simple, and that’s probably a good thing. There’s only a few things for me to click before I get my spec, and it’s all really easy to understand what does what. My only qualm with this would be that I’d like a way to maybe detach the Stategy pane so I can reference it without having to view everything else.
Features 5 / 5
The EDGE site lists the addon as a talent, glyph, and rotation manager. I’d say it definitely lives up to that. The talenter comes in two flavors – auto and manual – so you can pick and choose as you like. The glyph choices aren’t explained, but they seem pretty obvious in most cases. And – at least from my experience – the rotations and strategies given are solid.
Customer Support 5 / 5
Not only did they get back to me the same day I asked my question, but they answered it thoroughly. Even just dealing with this one person has given me hope that they really do have experts working on these products. No complaints from me here.
Value 5 / 5
This is always the tricky one, because what I consider good value may not be what you consider good value. But frankly… EDGE is a great value. Less than $40 and I’ve got an all-access pass to every class and every spec in the game, for life.
Overall 4.5 / 5
I definitely think EDGE was worth what I paid for it, and I haven’t even explored all its uses. I was pretty skeptical about anybody being able to use this product, but I’ve learned a ton already. Like I said, my only downgrade was just for a feature I wish it had. Overall I’m pretty impressed!