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 Post subject: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:34 am  
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I am sure all reactions will be appropriately melodramatic :)

TLDR highlights: Boss armor going up 10% for lvl 80 raids so all physical DPS nerfed, Blizzard worried about bursty damage in PvP, warlocks not OP enough so getting buffs.

Quote:
Upcoming Boss armor change

Quote from: Ghostcrawler (Source)As I have posted a couple of times recently, we decided to raise the armor of level 83 raid bosses by 10% to correct for some dps difference between casters and melee + hunters. I wanted to address the issue head on with the rogues.

We have done a lot of testing recently, and concluded that even with this change, Assassination rogues are likely the top dps spec in the game against single bosses that don't move around a lot (like Patchwerk). This isn't a bad place for them to be. They pay a small price both for being melee (where more damage tends to occur) and for lacking the ability to respec into a non-damage build. We don't think they will be as far above hybrids as they have been before -- as I've posted before, it's very important that hybrid classes do higher dps now that their buffs do not stack.

Combat builds, especially swords, is competitive but probably behind Assassination. This is something we'd like to address, especially if it turns out to be a major difference between the specs. Additional armor does hurt Combat, but also remember it's just raid bosses and not other players (or trash or heroic bosses).

Subtelty, sadly, is just much harder to test since so much of their damage relies on other players. Our preliminary evidence is that they generate plenty of combo points from Honor Among Thieves, but this might mean their personal dps when not in a group suffers. This is something we're still testing.

I will add that some players have wondered if Honor Among Thieves is bugged since the cp can occur more often than 1 sec. In this case, the tooltip is just unclear. When Jimmy the Shaman crits, he cannnot "send you" a combo point more often than 1 per sec. But if you have lots of players critting all the time, you can build them up quickly. So Honor is (here it comes) working as intended.


Upcoming Frost PvP changes

Quote from: Ghostcrawler (Source)We have concerns about how bursty dps has become in PvP. On the other hand, we're pretty happy with mage dps in PvE so we want to take care not to hurt it.

For example, we discussed shifting some of Arcane's damage between Arcane Blast and Arcane Barrage, but that actually does hurt one of Arcane's PvE advantages over Fire -- namely to be able to move around while doing some instant spells.

In the case of Frost, however, we have become concerned that it's too easy to blow opponents up too quickly. Two of the culprits here are instant, uninterruptible Fireballs and Deep Freeze.

We are changing Brain Freeze to only proc off of Frost spells that can chill. Specifically, this limits the tactic of trying to fish for procs with Ice Lance. Ice Lance gets used a lot more in PvP, so we don't think this will hurt Frost as much in PvE.

Secondly, Cold as Ice no longer reduces the cooldown on Deep Freeze. Deep Freeze is an (ahem) cool spell and we don't want to nerf it too much, but you must admit that the poor frozen shmuck can endure a lot of damage while he is locked up.


Upcoming Warlock DPS changes

Quote from: Ghostcrawler (Source)We have finished a fairly comprehensive look at the dps of various classes and specs and are concerned that warlock dps isn't quite where it should be. It's not abysmal by any means, but we think it should be a little higher.

To give warlocks a little extra nudge in PvP, we increased Soul Link up to 20% from 15%. You may already have this change.

In PvE, overall, we just think a lot of classes benefitted from getting the warlock buffs a little more than the locks benefited from getting everyone else's buffs. So we decided to just buff lock damage across the board (which will also help in PvP somewhat). Rather than change damage and coefficients of a lot of different ranks of spells, we just inflated talents that we were almost certain you'd already have. Shadow Mastery, Demonic Tactics and Emberstorm were all increased by 1% per rank for 5% total.

Let us know how that feels. The changes should go live before Nov 13.


Recent Fury changes

Quote from: Ghostcrawler (Source)As I posted recently in the hunter forums, we increased the armor on level 83 raid bosses by 10%. This will be a nerf to warrior dps.

In the case of Arms and Protection, we don't think any adjustment is necessary at this time. Arms is doing very competitive dps, while Fury has fallen behind. We experimented with lowering the proc chance of Sudden Death, from where Arms gets a lot of its damage, but weren't happy with the result and ultimately decided to buff Fury instead.

First, we increased the percentage of AP that contributes to Bloodthirst from 45% to 50%.

Second, we reduced the hit penalty on special attacks on Titan's Grip from -12% to -5%.

As I have said before, we have been somewhat reluctant to give Titan's Grip such a huge buff. It is now likely more powerful than several other talents in the tree and risks being the 51-point talent to which all other classes compare their 51-point talent. Nevertheless, we feel it was the right change to make.

When a Fury warrior missed a Slam or Bloodthirst on a boss, they ended up building up a lot of extra rage that couldn't be spent fast enough. I understand some players suggested an additional attack for Fury, and that is something we may still consider when we see players hit 80 and start experimenting more with the build. But it would be a very big change that involved touching talent trees and glyphs, as well as a lot of time necessary to iterate on the right values. The Titan's Grip change by contrast was a simple one, and judging by the number of players who have asked for it throughout beta, one that will be welcomed by the community.


Upcoming hunter changes

Quote from: Ghostcrawler (Source)As I have suggested a few times, we are concerned that hunters of all 3 specs are doing damage that is clearly superior to other classes. While we're trying to achieve closer parity among specs of all classes with regard to dps, and we want to particularly make sure that hunters, rogues, mages and locks are not left behind, we do think the hunters are too far ahead, particularly at 80, in good gear, when raid-buffed.

However, we have also tried to give hunters a substantial survivability boost in PvP and we don't want to do anything that hurts them too much in PvP.

So here are changes you will most likely see soon:

1) Ranged attacks no longer benefit from the haste effects of Windfury Totem and Improved Icy Talons. This is a nerf to hunter white damage.

2) We are also improving the armor on level 83 raid bosses by 10%. This will be a nerf to the dps of any class that does physical damage. For classes that would slide behind with such a change, we'll take steps to adjust them -- though it probably isn't as many as you think. The raid buff stacking overhaul was very beneficial to melee (and hunters). Sunder / Expose Armor alone can be a 20%+ dps increase, which is why we decided to attack the problem from this angle.

3) Now the armor change won't affect PvP at all and the haste buff change will only have a marginal affect in BGs and only in Arena teams that include certain comps. However, in order to make sure we didn't nerf hunters too much, we made two changes to Disengage. First, its cooldown dropped to 25 sec (from 30) which can be talented to 16. Second, it no longer requires a target, but does require you to be in combat. Now if someone closes to melee, you can leap back without having to select them first. We require you to be in combat though so we don't see a lot of hunters bouncing around IF / Org or using it like Blink to goofily speed up travel.

Blue posts

Quote from Blizzard staffHallow's End - Horseman's mount and Squashling
Ooglop, the Horseman's mount is ten times as rare as the Squashling, in terms of pure numbers. You've just had a very strange run of personal luck. (Source)

Classes DPS unbalance in Sunwell
I wish we had fixed it. There isn't any kind of promise I could make that would really count for much, and making promises only tends to get us in trouble anyway.

I try to shoot straight with you all though and be honest when I think something isn't working or someone is OP or when we make mistake. So all I can offer is that we'll try to fix it if we see that problem again.

It's even more imperative to fix it now because the buffs are more easily replaced than they were before. In Sunwell, you would have brought a shaman if he sat there upping his leatherworking skill so long as he could WF and Bloodlust. If that happened in Ulduar, the shaman would get replaced. We have to make sure nobody gets replaced just because another class would do their job much better. (Source)

AoE Tanking in 3.0.2 and WotLK
I think it's more fun for more groups when the tank can hold a decent number of mobs. The only think we're slightly concerned about is we don't want to see PvE CC just go away. Several classes are designed around their ability to CC, and we don't want that to be neglected. In an ideal world, this would be less of an issue of threat management and more of an issue that if the tank tries to tank 4 and 5 pulls without CC that the incoming damage is too great.

It's probably fine for MgT. We'll just keep an eye on it at L80 especially in heroics. (Source)

Burst damage in PvP
We are concerned that burst dps is too high in PvP at the moment. Our hope is that damage increased a lot with the most recent patch at 70, but then when everyone hits 80 their health and survivability will catch up. The logic is that with limited talent points most players just go for whatever maximizes their damage, but gear hasn't changed.

However, we're not entirely convinced 80 will be better than 70. It's something we're talking about a lot right now. (Source)

Hunter (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
Hunter DPS in PvE
We are seeing autoshot damage as much higher proportion of total damage than you are seeing. And we are seeing hunter damage much higher than other classes. That is only true when hunters can get their shots off and aren't interrupted -- this is a PvE and not a PvP concern. (Source)

Warlock (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
Demonic Empowerment removed from the GCD
We compared this talent to other talents, such as Bestial Wrath which is not on the GCD, and decided to remove Demonic Empowerment from the GCD. The potential damage loss should no longer be an issue. (Source)

Developers Q&A (Source)
Curse of Elements - Moonkin and Deathknights provide this 13% debuff as part of their normal dps rotation without losing any dps. Warlocks have to give up casting a DPS curse to provide only a 10% benefit OR we have to spec deep affliction to get 13% benefit, but we still lose a DPS curse by applying it. This seems to go against the new debuffing philosophy.
One, this is an entirely new system. It's going to take some time to see how it feels and tweaks on our part to get right. Assuming the overall change ends up feeling good, then we do need to look at situations where one class feels like they are paying substantially more (whether it's cost, talents, procs, giving up dps or whatever) than another class.

Second, we don't want the buffs to be utterly identical or we lose some of the differences between classes and ultimately depth to the game. While we do want to do more work on it per my above statement, if the litmus test for players is that their talent has the same number of ranks and is located in the same spot on the talent tree and has the same duration and the same ease to apply, they risk being disappointed.

Blood Pact (Imp) - This debuff is inferior to the other increased health buffs AND requires a specific pet out. This also seems against your new philosophy.
Our logic was the lock always had the option of bringing out another pet whereas the other class might have to respec or just end up with a buff that wasn't needed.

Stealth Detection channelled on VW - This seems really clumsy and difficult to use. Why did you move it from a passive buff on the FH to an active channel on the VW. Surely it would be better as a passive buff on the VW.
The Felhunter just felt like a jack-of-all-trades PvP pet. One of the things we're trying to do with locks is get more of the demons feeling useful. The Voidwalker gets used a lot while leveling and then gets parked, even though it is one of the more -- perhaps the most -- iconic pets. A passive buff is something we'll consider though.

Backdraft - Any plans to make this affect the GCD? I dont know if the tech can cupport this, but making immolate not consume a charge(and i guess not receive the haste) would really help. Also, is backlashed spells consuming the backdraft charges intended?
Affecting the GCD is always something we're reluctant to do. Removing Immolate would be possible -- it's just a change to the spell description. We can discuss it. Having backlash and backdraft play nice together is harder. This problem creeps up for a lot of different classes when one spell can proc multiple effects.

Demonic Empowerment - I think this would be good off of the GCD.
Like I said, the GCD is there for a reason and we are always hesitant to let players remove it. When we do, it's often because you have a very reactionary ability. What is it in DE that you need to right now without waiting?

Fire and Brimstone - Are you happy with this talent, especially at 5 points?
I think the talent is fine. Five points might be a little steep. We do need some 5 point talents, especially in that slot, and all of them (throughout the game) risk becoming too general purpose, and therefore mandatory, if we keep buffing their effects. I'll put it on the list for consideration though.

Glyph of Souls - Could you explain the reasoning for changing to this to -70% mana cost. I dont like using hyperbole, but I can't think of any circumstance where this would be beneficial or useful. Unless you are changing Ritual of Souls?
We felt like it was a band-aid to the actual problem, which is that shards have changed from something to power certain powerful warlock spells to a generic resource. Rather than give you a couple of places here and there to opt out of them, we'd prefer to change the whole system. Bigger changes unfortunately take more time, but it's something we are talking about right now.

Master Conjurer - Any chance on tuning this talent a bit - it's nearly there but just needs to provide a little bit higher buff to the stones imo.
There are technical limitations to that prevent some of the buffs we would ideally grant to the stones. We might end up having to redesign the talent slightly.

Curse of Exhaustion - What's the reasoning behind the nerf to 30%?
It was 30% for a long time. We tried it at 50%, but it's ranged and renewable so it seemed like it shouldn't be as good as Hamstring and Wing Clip.

Drain Mana - I think it's pretty safe to say all warlocks consider this spell to be of very limited use. It really seemed not to scale at 70, and at 80 it drains even less of a % of a targets mana pool. Have you considered Drain Mana's usefulness in the expansion?
Rank 7 drains more than rank 6 and so on, so it does improve with level. It doesn't scale in the coefficient sense. To answer your question, we have considered it and didn't find it to be much weaker than it is today. It's something to keep an eye on though.

Reading back on this makes me a little paranoid that you will interpret my answers as our feeling that locks are broken. That isn't the case. In a game of this size there are always some things you'd want to look at given more time. I have just tried to be candid about what some of those areas are for warlocks. They exist for all classes though. It's an MMO. It changes over time.

Warlock's trees balance and DPS
Warlock single-target dps should be competitive with mages, hunters and rouges. We try not to balance classes around their AE ability since that is situational (but often very useful).

In our internal tests, warlocks are close to mages and below hunters, which as I've already suggested (or was that in another thread?) is a problem. I often regret posting what we're seeing at the moment, because it just leads to other questions. I offer it only to say that we do not reach the conclusion that warlock dps is sub-par. Hunters may be OP however.

Affliction and Destro are pretty close. Affliction probably continues to be a trickier rotation to pull off, even with the recent (and previously announced) change to Haunt. We're not convinced yet that Affliction is the black diamond slope for experts only, but it's definitely something to keep an eye on.

Demonology may be lower, but we're also not sure it would be fair for Demo to get the extra survivability and do the same dps. However, we do think it is much less the case now that Demo = PvP only and Destro = PvE only.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:42 am  
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Wait, they are saying Deep Freeze is OP? How is this different than me getting stun locked 3 times running into SM yesterday? Deep Freeze was nerfed to shit because it was "OP" before when it dealt damage before... now it is ONLY useful in PvP, so they what, wanna take away its PvP usefulness? Why bother taking it. I am fine with them nerfing the PvP aspects of it... but in that case, you should really give us the damage portion back.

Edit:

Also...
Quote:
We are changing Brain Freeze to only proc off of Frost spells that can chill. Specifically, this limits the tactic of trying to fish for procs with Ice Lance. Ice Lance gets used a lot more in PvP, so we don't think this will hurt Frost as much in PvE.


If you take our shitty glyph, which is mandatory for raiding as Frost... that means Brain Freeze will proc off CoC only [or talented Blizz]. If you are gonna do this, fix our glyph.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 8:50 am  
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Quote:
Demonology may be lower, but we're also not sure it would be fair for Demo to get the extra survivability and do the same dps. However, we do think it is much less the case now that Demo = PvP only and Destro = PvE only.


*sigh*

DPS classes are only going to take the best DPS specs into PvE.

But hey, Soul Link is still largely useless in PvE! No damage boost, and its not like a Warlock takes any more AoE damage than any other class. Any Warlock that wants to magic-tank a boss/mob is better of with Nether Protection/Demonic Armor anyways...



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 9:37 am  
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Some of these changes such as the Demo versus Destro are targeted at the players who PVP and PVE and are generally casual. They'll never be the best at both but won't be suckass useless..



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 9:39 am  
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Yep, standard operating proceedure. Nerf hunters, buff locks and rogues. Nothing to see here, these aren't the droids your looking for. Move along.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 9:53 am  
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Selethar wrote:
Yep, standard operating proceedure. Nerf hunters, buff locks and rogues. Nothing to see here, these aren't the droids your looking for. Move along.


Except that this time around locks and rogues were laughable, even detrimental in raid comps.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 10:51 am  
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pasha wrote:
If you take our shitty glyph, which is mandatory for raiding as Frost... that means Brain Freeze will proc off CoC only [or talented Blizz]. If you are gonna do this, fix our glyph.


Dunno if this is true or not, but worth finding out.

Xentropy on EJ wrote:
Patently false. It has been mentioned quite a few times that Frostbolt, even with the glyph, still counts as a spell that applies a chill effect for the purposes of FoF and Frostbite. It can be reasonably assumed the same will be the case for BF (though since the change hasn't gone live yet, unproven).

To reiterate: Fingers of Frost and Frostbite still proc on glyphed Frostbolt casts.

The change DOES have a minor negative effect on frost PvE, namely further reducing the benefit of casting ice lance even on a 3rd FoF "ghost charge" via latency exploitation. Lhivera's math showed the point to be around 1800 spellpower before; now it'll be even lower, and basically any level 80 mage in blues or better will get no benefit from "comboing" a Fingers of Frost proc--just keep frostbolting for maximum results.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 10:58 am  
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pasha wrote:
Wait, they are saying Deep Freeze is OP? How is this different than me getting stun locked 3 times running into SM yesterday? Deep Freeze was nerfed to shit because it was "OP" before when it dealt damage before... now it is ONLY useful in PvP, so they what, wanna take away its PvP usefulness? Why bother taking it. I am fine with them nerfing the PvP aspects of it... but in that case, you should really give us the damage portion back.


Well, kind of. Deep freeze gives you +50% crit while it's up. It's still becoming less and less useful each patch, and I'm already at the point where I have arcane barrage and no envy for deep freeze mages at all, because DF has been nerfed over and over to the point where I just don't want it that much.

It used to deal damage comparable to a frostbolt, and was admittedly a little ridiculous for PVE and PVP.

Then they nerfed FoF for PVE (buffed for PVP) so it was no longer worthwhile doing shatter combos in PVE (especially with DF, because it had damage comparable to a frostbolt but was instant cast so that would be the 'tail' of your shatter combo - and beat out ice lance's damage, but had a cooldown).

Then DF was making it too easy to lock down and blow away bad opponents in PVP (protip: save your fucking PVP trinket for the deep freeze)... freeze, frostbolt+DF, frostbolt, frostbolt + icelance = dead anything. So they took the damage off DF entirely. Now it has no PVE use whatsoever (hi2u "we want 51 point talents to have PVE and PVP use").

pasha wrote:
Quote:
We are changing Brain Freeze to only proc off of Frost spells that can chill. Specifically, this limits the tactic of trying to fish for procs with Ice Lance. Ice Lance gets used a lot more in PvP, so we don't think this will hurt Frost as much in PvE.


If you take our shitty glyph, which is mandatory for raiding as Frost... that means Brain Freeze will proc off CoC only [or talented Blizz]. If you are gonna do this, fix our glyph.


This is actually not true. Glyphed frostbolt (while still HORRIFIC design) still procs frostbite and FoF, etc. I think they actually didn't REMOVE the snare effect, just made it a 0-second effect or some such thing. So it can still proc anything a normal chill effect would.

At least dual specs/glyphs will solve the "frostbolt glyph is terrible" problem for us.

---------------

As a sidenote, they keep throwing frost pvp to the dogs which just further pushes mages to arcane for pvp (which is actually VERY strong... I can easily take on 2 opponents now, often more. I singlehandedly wiped the floor with a frostmage/rogue duo multiple times last night before they got me while low on mana and exhausted cooldowns. Admittedly, I am probably more experienced than them, but mage/rogue is still an extremely strong team).

Admittedly, on live, arcane is something of a "faceroll arcane barrage" spec (you'll do a lot better with some understanding of pvp counters and how to fill in the space between barrages), but it's an EFFECTIVE "faceroll" spec. Frost was a hard spec because of how easy it was to interrupt, reliance on the right counters at the right time, need to set up your dps moves before they became effective, etc. And mage PVP has always been considered "hard mode" compared to a lot of other classes.

HARD TO SAY!



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:16 am  
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titan's grip might not completely suck after all! We shall see...


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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:35 am  
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Further analysis:

Quote:
As I have posted a couple of times recently, we decided to raise the armor of level 83 raid bosses by 10% to correct for some dps difference between casters and melee + hunters. I wanted to address the issue head on with the rogues.


Hunters/Rogues were doing too much damage compared to other classes in raids. This makes them do less damage which brings them in line. But only versus boss mobs. There's two ways they could have lowered your dps output in raids to bring you in line. Raising boss mitigation or lowering your base damage (which would apply in pvp and soloing). Of the two, which hurts you less?

On a sidenote re: physical scaling, I've seen parses of a warrior doing > 3.2k dps on brutallus on live.

But that's trivial number tweaking.
This is more important, imo, as it says something about blizz's design philosophy:

Quote:
Assassination rogues are likely the top dps spec in the game against single bosses that don't move around a lot (like Patchwerk). This isn't a bad place for them to be. They pay a small price both for being melee (where more damage tends to occur) and for lacking the ability to respec into a non-damage build.


So we can take it from this that being a "pure" class does come with advantages toward your "pure role", and that classes with only one role (warlock, mage, rogue, hunter) should excel in that role above and beyond hybrids.

Quote:
Demonology may be lower, but we're also not sure it would be fair for Demo to get the extra survivability and do the same dps.


We can take it from this that toughness comes at a premium for non-tank classes even though it generally contributes next to nothing in a raid setting. Ultimately, it doesn't matter if I take 6% less damage, have a -5% chance to be hit, and can shield myself for 3-4k as frost, for example, if fire is the clear cut better dps spec then I will be expected to run as fire (before the "no, it's not like that" crowd chimes in, who here can honestly say they bring a mage to a raid for low dps survivability? If a mage is capable of doing say, 3k dps - on par with the rest of the raid, but specs for 2.5k, why would you bring him instead of another hunter or warlock or rogue?).

Once again, survivability has near-zero impact on a dps class' raid role, so if demo gets pegged for dps because of increased toughness, then warlocks are just not going to spec demo. It's as simple as that. As far as a raid is concerned, it's trading a valuable performance metric (dps) for essentially nothing. That's a terrible tradeoff.

Quote:
Ranged attacks no longer benefit from the haste effects of Windfury Totem and Improved Icy Talons. This is a nerf to hunter white damage.


Again, your damage may be too high and needs a nerf in raid environments. Presuming this to be true, you should be glad about this. Because this ONLY affects your dps in groups when paired with a shaman. If they had the choice between this (10% less haste from group buffs, but your damage remains the same outside of a group while soloing/pvping) or just nerfing your damage by 10% across the board (assuming the two were comparable, for sake of argument), then at least this way only affects your rdps. Your solo/pvp performance remains just as good as it was.

Quote:
We are concerned that burst dps is too high in PvP at the moment. Our hope is that damage increased a lot with the most recent patch at 70, but then when everyone hits 80 their health and survivability will catch up. The logic is that with limited talent points most players just go for whatever maximizes their damage, but gear hasn't changed.


We're going to see a lot more stam at 80, that's for sure. Also, a lot of talents are just plain crazy right now. Arcane barrage hitting for 2k when people have 10k hp is 20% of your health in one shot. When it's hitting for 2.7k and people have 20k hp, that's down to ~13% of their hp, and a lot more reasonable. We've seen how disproportionately dps is scaling up from our raids alone, but none of the new survivability stuff is in the game yet to counter that.

I, for one, will be terrified if burst is tuned down too much because my mana situation just gets more and more dire. If I can't burst an opponent down... well, I'm squishy and not built for long engagements. Standing still is suicide, and a lot of my mobile damage and escape trickery eats a lot of mana. If I can't apply heavy damage and pressure to an opponent, I'm certainly not going to win an 'outlast' battle.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:41 am  
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I think we have only seen the beginning of PvP balancing. My guess is that Blizzard is trying to get PvE to a baseline with the expansion release and then will wait to see how PvP plays out. PvP is more dynamic and there are different things to optimize that are harder to predict (how much is extra toughness worth versus DPS?) so we'll start to see more PvP oriented changes...I expect this to be especially true around Dec/Jan when we have a solid patch of lvl 80s that decide to head back to areans. I would also expect it to happen again at the end of Season 1.

The good news for raiders is that Blizzard appareantly is aware that nerfing things because of PvP irritates PvE players and seems to be taking both sides into account (and vice-versa really) when makin changes. The armor change is a good example.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 11:52 am  
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RANT, QQ, RAVE, RANT, SCREAM, YELL, QQ, ETC.










Only because it's expected of me =)



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 12:07 pm  
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Interesting changes with the raid boss armor. Kind of weird that they would be doing such a large general physical dps nerf this late into development.

Assassination will obviously benefit due to the boost to poisons and +50% rupture it can get at 80. Poor combat though. Maybe mace spec will actually be good?

I’m highly intrigued by the clarification on HaT… assuming they don’t go back on that, there may be hope for sub in PvE (glee!). It’s a terrible grinding spec but once I hit 80 its certainly something to try out in the instances, even if 5 man groups are terribly optimized for it. White damage was always a problem for any sub PvE spec, but if that’s supposed to be less important, maybe a shift from DW spec to 3/3 vile and 1/5 improved poisons will balance things more in its favor.


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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Wed Oct 22, 2008 2:02 pm  
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For PvE raiding, demonology and frost, share the same fate. At least deep frost has great AoE damage which, although situational, brings a little more than full demonology in the damage department. The key in here is how big the gap will be.

Demonology does bring Demonic Pact to the raid which is the best spell power raid buff along with totem of wrath. Third being improved divine spirit which is considerably lower than the aformentioned.



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 Post subject: Re: Rejoice or Despair as appropriate
PostPosted: Thu Oct 23, 2008 9:24 am  
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Quote:
Changes to Healing in the future
We made an effort to improve the fun of tanking for LK, and so far it seems to have gone pretty well. Healing is next. In many ways it will be a more challenging fix because what people think is fun about healing varies and some people are pretty happy with it already.

I also want to caution that it might be a massive change, so don't log in every day looking for the big healing hotfix. It could take awhile. (Source)

Hallow's End - Squashling Pet dropping from Treat Bags
I'll go ahead and put the speculation to rest by confirming that this change is indeed legitimate. (Source)

Druid (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
Consequences of 10% armor increase on bosses for feral druids
It will hurt Feral dps, but we also needed to hurt Feral dps a little. Cats with a cat spec really hurt stuff now.

It will be a slight threat nerf to bears and warriors (and DKs and paladins slightly less) but tank threat is so enormous right now, that we don't think it will be a big deal. (Source)

Moonkin form changes
We changed Moonkin form so that only single target spells have a chance to regen your mana. This should really only affect the tactic of "free" Hurricanes that crit a lot -- Starfall is on a long enough cooldown that we don't think it's a significant source of mana.

We like Hurricane critting and doing "real" AE damage and don't have a problem with it proc'ing Omen of Clarity. The mana return on it was just a little silly though. (Source)

Omen
Omen has always been hard to understand for some reason. All "PPM" means is that the chance is normalized based on cast time so that, for example, faster spells or weapon hits won't cause a proc to happen more often.

Omen has a frequency of 3.5 sec. This means that on average it will go off every 3.5 sec on single-target attacks. For a group attack, like Hurricane, the chance is per target not per spell. However we also drop the chance slightly (I believe by a third or so) to make sure that area spells don't proc it a whole lot. (Source)

Hunter (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
(Pet) Cat DPS reduction
We took cat dps down a notch when we made the big pass on pet dps recently. It shouldn't be terrible, but it shouldn't be clearly above all of the others either. (Source)

Readiness off the GCD ?
Bestial Wrath, if I'm not mistaken, doesn't trigger a global but you can't interrupt a global to use it. Readiness does seem a little odd on the GCD (though it's only a 1 sec one). Abilities where you have to spend a global to get back others. We can discuss this one. (Source)

Paladin (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
Retribution nerf and Divine Storm
Homogenization is absolutely still a concern. We originally conceived of Divine Storm as Holy and obviously liked it in that role. We discussed several different ways to change it, but leaving it as Holy would have meant really lowering the damage, which might have turned into a greater PvE nerf than intended. (Physical damage is a good knob to turn for PvE because we can assume a boss is sundered, but we can't assume that in PvP.)

I described what we wanted to do as surgical. We wanted to change as little as we could to get the changes we wanted. Switching the spell from Holy was a very easy change. Rebuilding the entire spell might have been prone to introduced bugs or side-effects, which would then prevent us from evaluating if the nerfs to Ret were sufficient.

We plan on revisiting Divine Storm once we have a better idea of where level 80 dps and pvp stack up in general. I won't promise it will return to Holy damage, but it might. We might also try and do something different with it to help push it farther from Whirlwind.

Nerfing a class is never fun, and I thank people who have remained rational about it. I know it can be an emotional issue given Ret's history. We still want to see the spec in PvP and endgame raids though. (Source)

Holy spec AE Healing
We have resisted giving Holy a true AE heal in order to reinforce differentiation among the healing classes. But if needing an AE turns out to be something that every healer needs, just like every tank need an AE, then we'll man up and give it to them. "Deemed by the devs" is key though. We're not going to do it just because the community asks for it. But we will at least listen to your logic. (Source)

Priest (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
Mandatory talents and potential changes to all trees
What we would like to do with all of the trees is give you options where possible. Cookie-cutter builds may always be a reality in a game like this to some extent, but ideally you could get the core of what you need to be competitive (in dps, CC, healing or whatever) and have a few talent points left over for fun talents.

Now I'm being candid here, which is a little risky, because mean players tend to turn it into "ZOMG they are shipping the game before it's perfect." But I think rational people realize that with a game the scope of WoW and a team as creative as ours, there are always more things you want to do. So there is the preamble. If this comes back to bite me, I'll just be less forthcoming with our thought process in the future.

We do think there are parts of the priest tree that are too bloated, and we aren't 100% happy with some of the decisions you're forced to make. Getting Meditation is one. Another is trading off Imp DS or Guardian Spirit. This involves a major change to probably all three trees though, so it's probably not going to happen before LK goes live. We are trying to minimize sweeping changes right now, just to minimize introducing potential bugs into the game. But it's something you will probably start seeing before too long, perhaps in bits and pieces or perhaps not. A lot of that will be informed on how priests do in PvP and PvE once Lich King ships as well. (Source)

Shaman (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
Spirit Walk
Spirit Walk should break anything with the root, frozen or snared mechanic. This should include all of the things you think it does, such as Entangling Roots, Frost Nova or Hamstring. If you are finding any of these are not included, it is most likely a bug, so do let us know. (Source)

No changes to Enhancement tree after the 10% armor buff on bosses
We didn't think we needed to buff Enhancement because your boss dps is really high right now. Plus, as you pointed out, some amount of your dps comes from spell damage already so it will affect you less than say rogues and warriors. (Source)

Elemental Tree DPS
We think Elemental single-target damage is good once you can use your fire spells. It is up there with Moonkin and Shadow Priests and similar specs. We have looked at this issue a lot, because it is something we were really worried about.

Your damage may be low at 70 and this is something we're evaluating. We're not sure it is worth the changes it would take to fix it, because it risks messing with the balance between Lightning and Fire that we have now. Your damage is still plenty high enough to level and to do 5-player instances. I don't mean to suggest Elemental is catastrophically broken, or then we would do a major intervention to fix it. At the moment, the level 70 raids are so easy that we're not very worried about you getting benched for the next couple of weeks until LK goes live. Once LK goes live, very few people are going to be doing competitive raiding or PvP at level 70.

Your AE damage is too low. This is something of a design change for us, because we were always satisfied with elemental not being a big AE class. But as I have posted a few times recently, we now think that was a mistake and we want to make some changes. We're not sure yet whether the best way to do that is through new mechanics, or changes to existing mechanics. After all, your totems are supposed to supply some AE damage and it's not hard to imagine the changes it would take to get them there. Thunderstorm is somewhere else we could hit it. (Source)

Warlock (Skills List / Talent Calc. (9095))
Warlock mount quest not useful anymore
It's a cool quest, and we haven't removed it. But it's also true that as we add content, players tend to understandably focus on the more recent content. As a result, we tend to try and speed along some of the earlier stuff. Consider that it was probably far easier for a level 60 warlock to get a group together to complete the quest than it was for a level 70 warlock, just because all of the other level 70s were doing other stuff (like helping a druid complete the epic flight form quest perhaps). Now, maybe a level 80 warlock can solo all of the mount quest content, but that still isn't going to give them the epic challenge that it sounds like you experienced. More than likely, a lot more warlocks leveling quickly through the older content will just skip over it.

And we're okay with that. That quest chain served us all well for a long time. But we have a lot of new epic challanges awaiting us in Northrend. (Source)



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