Have you ever had something that you do all the time suddenly feel completely uncomfortable and unfamiliar? Like when you write a word that you've written a thousand times before but then look at it and find no connection between the specific arrangement of letters and the meaning, as if you've never seen the word before? It's an odd feeling.
Something like that happened to me after the 4.1 patch.
One of the less heralded features that Blizzard included in 4.1 was a change to the way key presses work. In the past, when you pushed a key down the ability that is bound to that key would not activate until you released the key. Or put more simply, the ability activated when the key was going up as opposed to down.
Blizzard added an option to change this behaviour in the form of a check-box in the Interface>Combat part of the main menu. Having this box checked would change the action of the key press to activate when the key is pressed, rather than released. Blizzard also set this option to ON by default.
For many, this was a welcome and long overdue change. Add-ons have existed for a long time to provide this kind of functionality, and many people have been using them for years. In theory it should save a split-second every time you activate an ability. It's kind of a mystery as to why they did it the other way in the first place, really.
MOMMY, MY BUTTONS DON'T FEEL RIGHT
I swear that I tried to give this change an honest try. I can completely see the advantages of the new key action, and before the patch I was very excited about this change. I figured that it would make healing much more natural and responsive and in the long run would make me a better healer.
However, something happened that I did not expect. Every time I tried to heal things just didn't work right. My timing had been completely thrown off by the change. I would press the button too early and get a That Ability Isn't Ready Yet error and my spell wouldn't cast, forcing me to press the button again and waste precious time. Or I would press the button and it would cast on the wrong target because I had selected the target I wanted a fraction of a second after hitting the button. My timing was off so much that everything felt completely foreign and I was having a really hard time healing.
That split second made a huge difference.
I ended up having to spend more time looking at my Stuf cast bar (which shows latency) so that I could time the button presses just right, which meant spending less time looking at the giant globs of green goo that the boss was using to try to kill me. My fingers just didn't want to cooperate, and were fighting years of muscle memory in trying to learn the new timing.
I tried for a week or so to get used to to it, but I ended up having to turn it off. Once I did everything felt alright again and the natural flow of my healing rhythm returned.
I guess the moral of this little story is that any little change can be a big change. Given more time I probably could have got used to it, or I could have switched to Clique or Mouseover Macros to solve to problem. But the simplest solution was to just turn it off.
Did anyone else have any problems adjusting to the change, or am I just weird?