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Friday, April 14, 2017

Wizard101 Professor's Hoard Pack Review


Ever wanted to look like one of your professors? This latest pack is your chance to do just that, in addition to snagging epic new casting symbol mounts and a creative new owl pet. The gear and wands available provide impressive stats, and the items included will help you fit right in alongside Ravenwood's best.


Professor's Hoard Pack: What's Inside

The pack contains a variety of Mirage-themed items, with emphasis on new furniture and NPCs as filler items between new gear and weapons alongside seven new mounts!

School Cast Symbol Mounts & Owl Protégé Pet

One of the highlights of this pack is the variety of items that are worth having. For one thing, school-specific casting symbol mounts. These simple but elegant mounts use the same format and setup as the surfboard, sharing a jump animation. 

The cast symbols shimmer and give off particle effects. I've included images of each of them, but pictures really don't do them justice, so I've included a GIF showing the jumping animation so that you can also get a a sense of the shimmering and particle effects in action.


One of the faces of the pack is the Owl Protégé pet. This adorable companion is a must-have for pet collectors. It comes with a Mass Myth Trap spell card at baby.

Mount & Pet Grade: B+
The community rates these items as:
Great 26% | Good 13% | Average 43% | Poor 18%


Moolinda Wu's Life Gear Set

The gear sets are quite interesting. In Life's, we have Moolinda's outfit and Merle's wand. The hat comes with a new spell - Life Feint, which can presumably be stacked with traditional feints for some extra damage for Life wizards. The robe continues a growing trend of not including damage, but focusing on defense, while the boots are a balance of both. The boots may be the only piece worth having, though some may be interested in the wand. The hat is one for consideration if you need that extra boost, of if you're earning your One in a Million badge.

Moolinda's Hardy Headwrap
Hat

Wu's Wild Kimono
Robe

Moolinda's Spirit Sandals
Boots

Headmaster's Zeal Staff
Wand






Dalia Falmea's Fire Gear Set

The Fire set, like the others, has a unique spell on the hat. Though Incindiate is a one-use spell, the potential is impressive. Imagine casting Burning Rampage or Rain of Fire and being able to follow with double the damage, dealt immediately. It can only be used in PvE, thankfully. As with other schools, the boots are worth taking a look at and the wand may be something to try given its ability to cast Scald.

Dalia's Smoldering Hairdo
Hat

Dalia's Blazing Suit
Robe

Dalia's Sweltering Shoes
Boots

Headmaster's Glowing Staff
Wand






Cyrus Drake's Myth Gear Set

Cyrus's Myth gear set follows the same pattern as the others. The Myth hat includes the spell Disjunction, a bit of an overpriced spell that trades all hanging effects with the target. This means blades, positive or negative, damage over time ticks, heals, traps, shields - all of it. If you're loaded up with negatives and the enemy has built up a collection of shields and blades, you might just trade, not only to cleanse yourself but also to prevent them from scoring a massive hit. The wand gets one of the more interesting may-casts, with the chance to summon a minion!

Cyrus's Secret Skullcap
Hat

Drake's Reflection Robe
Robe

Cyrus's Scholarly Striders
Boots

Headmaster's Dream Staff
Wand






Lydia Greyrose's Ice Gear Set

The Ice gear set emphasizes the defensive mechanism of the school. You'll notice on these sets, there are quite a few different stats. The resistance on the boots and robes, for example, is broken up into universal and school-based. The hat here comes with a Mass Tower Shield spell. The wand has an interesting may-cast, with the chance to throw a nice Ice Armor up on the caster. Similar to Dryad, it will grow with the caster's pips but not actually use any of them. This could introduce an interesting new mechanic of play in which there are benefits to hoarding pips beyond the usual strategies.

Lydia's Frigid Hat
Hat

Greyrose Glacial Jerkin
Robe

Lydia's Frozen Footwraps
Boots

Headmaster's Crystal Staff
Wand






Dworgyn's Death Gear Set

The Death set includes some of the more interesting spells. The hat has a Mass Feint, which could come in handy for bigger fights or battles involving multiple bosses. It's also a great offensive hat, and you'll notice on these items that the shadow pip chance provided is increasing all the time. The wand has a chance to cast Monster Mash, which is not marked as No PvP, and will Beguile the enemy to join your team for a round. There are many bosses this will not work on, but turning a minion against a tough boss could help win the battle.

Dworgyn's Havoc Hood
Hat

[Death Robe]
Robe

Dworgyn's Dire Boots
Boots

Headmaster's Doom Staff
Wand






Halston Balestrom's Storm Gear Set

Storm has been on an interesting path lately in which they are no longer the top school in terms of damage, having been passed by Fire on many pieces of gear. The hat here includes one of the least useful cards of the sets, Ion Wind, which produces a Storm critical blade. It could be good for battles where you need the double damage, but it's a slow card for which there are many substitutes. The wand does have a chance to cast Supercharge, continuing the may-cast x-pip spell mechanic, which could be quite interesting.

Halston's Eureka Hat
Hat

Balestrom's Blast Jacket
Robe

Halston's Stormy Slippers
Boots

Headmaster's Sky Staff
Wand






Alhazred's Balance Gear Set

The Balance set includes one new card called Restoring Hands, which is essentially a scaled-up version of past spells that is one-use like the others on the new hats. As with all professor sets, the boots are worth considering. The wand includes a chance to cast Judgement, which used to be a heavy hitter for Balance, but has taken somewhat of a backseat. Still, this is a massive damage spell which could turn the tide of a battle and is not marked No PvP.

Alhazred's Karmic Fez
Hat

Alhazred's Resolute Raiment
Robe

Alhazred's Consistent Clogs
Boots

Headmaster's Law Staff
Wand






Professor Gear Grade: A
The community rates these items as:
Great 57% | Good 10% | Average 19% | Poor 14%


Portraits & Other Items

Besides the many epic items included in the Professor's Hoard Pack, there's a chance to snag one or two new furniture items along with a lot of treasure cards and other filler materials, which will make up a majority of what you're receiving.

The new furniture items are definitely a great addition, but the small number make it a hard sell for housing decorators who wouldn't otherwise be interested. The other thing is that many of the portraits and drops are craftable or purchasable at such affordable rates that one might as well consider these pack items additional gold.

Other Items Grade: C
The community rates these items as: 
Great 35% | Good 27% | Average 12% | Poor 26%


Pack Analysis

You'll notice in this pack that you get a new piece of gear in every single one. That's pretty impressive. But you'll also notice that you virtually never get anything new or useful in the top four cards, which means you're essentially purchasing three of the new items, with some still being general, old items and some being one or seven-day versions of the new mounts.

Click to enlarge pack-opening samples




You will definitely load up on treasure cards, but the drop rates here are definitely decent on the new items. Here is the rarity of some items of note.

  • Epic: Permanent Cast Symbols mounts
  • Ultra-Rare: Robes, Headmaster Wands, 7-day Cast Symbol mounts
  • Rare: Hats, Boots, 1-day Cast Symbol mounts


The Verdict

Everyone ought to get in on this pack. If not for your boots or wand, at least to get some cool-looking gear and potentially a casting symbol mount. There have been plenty of reports of having to spend a significant amount to get a full set of the gear of your own school, so be aware of your budget and consider what you're opening for!

Overall Pack Grade: A
The community rates this pack as: 
Great 23% Good 41% | Average 18% | Poor 18%



Compare to:
Emperor's Attic Pack (C+) | Dragon's Hoard Pack (C-)Winter Wonder Pack (B+) | Gloomthorn Nightmare Pack (A) | Immortal's Lore Pack (C+) |  See all packs


What are you trying for in the new Professor's Hoard Pack?

Thanks for reading and see you in the Spiral!

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