MMO-Champion - Cataclysm Class & Mastery Systems Update
Update - I moved the "To Recap" part at the top of the post for those of you who hate walls of text. I also added a couple of blue posts about these changes

Cataclysm Class & Mastery Systems Update
[blizzquote author=Zarhym source=http://blue.mmo-champion.com/t/25626290449/cataclysm-class-amp-mastery-systems-update/]When we first announced our design goals for class talent trees back at BlizzCon 2009, one of our major stated focuses was to remove some of the boring and "mandatory" passive talents. We mentioned that we wanted talent choices to feel more flavorful and fun, yet more meaningful at the same time. Recently, we had our fansites release information on work-in-progress talent tree previews for druids, priests, shaman, and rogues. From those previews and via alpha test feedback, a primary response we heard was that these trees didn’t incorporate the original design goals discussed at BlizzCon. This response echoes something we have been feeling internally for some time, namely that the talent tree system has not aged well since we first increased the level cap beyond level 60. In an upcoming beta build, we will unveil bold overhauls of all 30 talent trees.

To Recap
When players reach level 10, they are presented with basic information on the three specializations within their class and are asked to choose one. Then they spend their talent point. The other trees darken and are unavailable until 31 points are spent in the chosen tree. The character is awarded an active ability, and one or more passive bonuses unique to the tree they've chosen. As they gain levels, they'll alternate between receiving a talent point and gaining new skills. They'll have a 31-point tree to work down, with each talent being more integral and exciting than they have been in the past. Once they spend their 31'st point in the final talent (at level 70), the other trees open up and become available to allocate points into from then on. As characters move into the level 78+ areas in Cataclysm, they'll begin seeing items with a new stat, Mastery. Once they learn the Mastery skill from their class trainer they'll receive bonuses from the stat based on the tree they've specialized in.

We understand that these are significant changes and we still have details to solidify. We feel, however, that these changes better fulfill our original class design goals for Cataclysm, and we're confident that they will make for a better gameplay experience. Your constructive feedback is welcomed and appreciated.

Talent Tree Vision

One of the basic tenets of Blizzard game design is that of “concentrated coolness.” We’d rather have a simpler design with a lot of depth, than a complicated but shallow design. The goal for Cataclysm remains to remove a lot of the passive (or lame) talents, but we don’t think that’s possible with the current tree size. To resolve this, we're reducing each tree to 31-point talents. With this reduction in tree size we need to make sure they're being purchased along a similar leveling curve, and therefore will also be reducing the number of total talent points and the speed at which they're awarded during the leveling process.

As a result, we can keep the unique talents in each tree, particularly those which provide new spells, abilities or mechanics. We’ll still have room for extra flavorful talents and room for player customization, but we can trim a great deal of fat from each tree. The idea isn’t to give players fewer choices, but to make those choices feel more meaningful. Your rotations won’t change and you won’t lose any cool talents. What will change are all of the filler talents you had to pick up to get to the next fun talent, as well as most talents that required 5 of your hard-earned points.

We are also taking a hard look at many of the mandatory PvP talents, such as spell pushback or mechanic duration reductions. While there will always be PvP vs. PvE builds, we’d like for the difference to be less extreme, so that players don’t feel like they necessarily need to spend their second talent specialization on a PvP build.

The Rise of Specialization

We want to focus the talent trees towards your chosen style of gameplay right away. That first point you spend in a tree should be very meaningful. If you choose Enhancement, we want you to feel like an Enhancement shaman right away, not thirty talent points later. When talent trees are unlocked at level 10, you will be asked to choose your specialization (e.g. whether you want to be an Arms, Fury or Protection warrior) before spending that first point. Making this choice comes with certain benefits, including whatever passive bonuses you need to be effective in that role, and a signature ability that used to be buried deeper in the talent trees. These abilities and bonuses are only available by specializing in a specific tree. Each tree awards its own unique active ability and passives when chosen. The passive bonuses range from flat percentage increases, like a 20% increase to Fire damage for Fire mages or spell range increases for casters, to more interesting passives such as the passive rage regeneration of the former Anger Management talent for Arms warriors, Dual-Wield Specialization for Fury warriors and Combat rogues, or the ability to dual-wield itself for Enhancement shaman.

The initial talent tree selection unlocks active abilities that are core to the chosen role. Our goal is to choose abilities that let the specializations come into their own much earlier than was possible when a specialization-defining talent had to be buried deep enough that other talent trees couldn’t access them. For example, having Lava Lash and Dual-Wield right away lets an Enhancement shaman feel like an Enhancement shaman. Other role-defining examples of abilities players can now get for free at level 10 include Mortal Strike, Bloodthirst, Shield Slam, Mutilate, Shadow Step, Thunderstorm, Earth Shield, Water Elemental, and Penance.

Getting Down to the Grit

Talent trees will have around 20 unique talents instead of today's (roughly) 30 talents, and aesthetically will look a bit more like the original World of Warcraft talent trees. The 31-point talents will generally be the same as the 51-point talents we already had planned for Cataclysm. A lot of the boring or extremely specialized talents have been removed, but we don't want to remove anything that’s going to affect spell/ability rotations. We want to keep overall damage, healing, and survivability roughly the same while providing a lot of the passive bonuses for free based on your specialization choice.

While leveling, you will get 1 talent point about every 2 levels (41 points total at level 85). Our goal is to alternate between gaining a new class spell or ability and gaining a talent point with each level. As another significant change, you will not be able to put points into a different talent tree until you have dedicated 31 talent points to your primary specialization. While leveling, this will be possible at 70. Picking a talent specialization should feel important. To that end, we want to make sure new players understand the significance of reaching the bottom of their specialization tree before gaining the option of spending points in the other trees. We intend to make sure dual-specialization and re-talenting function exactly as they do today so players do not feel locked into their specialization choice.

A True Mastery

The original passive Mastery bonuses players were to receive according to how they spent points in each tree are being replaced by the automatic passive bonuses earned when a tree specialization is chosen. These passives are flat percentages and we no longer intend for them to scale with the number of talent points spent. The Mastery bonus that was unique to each tree will now be derived from the Mastery stat, found on high-level items, and Mastery will be a passive skill learned from class trainers around level 75. In most cases, the Mastery stats will be the same as the tree-unique bonuses we announced earlier this year. These stats can be improved by stacking Mastery Rating found on high-level items.
[/blizzquote]


Blue posts
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
"Old" masteries
I would not focus too much on the old masteries, except for the third one that scales with gear. That one is still around.

Vengeance for tanks is still around and dps get damage and healers get healing and that sort of thing but the system has changed quite a bit overall (and partially as a result of community feedback). (Source)

Next beta build will be interesting
We want to unveil the entire enchilada in the next beta build or so. Everyone here worked really hard to get the whole package to a relatively playable and polished state. In essence we're not announcing a future plan -- we're telling you how the game works today. It's all done.

It's hard to offer timelines for when we will do a new beta push, but we're talking days or a few weeks, not months. All of the passives will be visible then. (Source)

Talent Points gain rate
About one every other level, but there are some exceptions. We are trying to alternate new abilities and talent points where possible. You will have 41 talent points at 85. (Source)

Spec abilities scaling
Specialization-defining abilities that are unlocked (e.g. Mutilate, Penance, Water Elemental and Mortal Strike) will scale based on a character's level and reflect an appropriate amount of damage, healing, and mitigation, etc. With the proper balancing, having these abilities at level 10 won't trivialize the leveling experience, but instead enhance it by allowing players to incorporate unique spells and skills that highlight their specialization into their rotations at a much earlier level.

We'll be closely monitoring how these new talent changes affect gameplay in the beta and will make adjustments to the system if necessary to ensure that our original goals are met. (Source)

Dual Spec
Dual Spec won't change. If you choose Protection paladin at level 10, you can respec to Ret paladin at your class trainer. Once you unlock Dual Spec, you can have 2 Prot builds or a Prot and Ret build or whatever you'd like. It will work almost exactly the way it does now. (Source)

New Talent system is ZOMG AMAZING
It's ZOMG AMAZING. We wouldn't go through all the work it is taking if we weren't convinced it was 100% win.

On your first point, too many of the specs didn't really feel like their spec until they had spent a lot of talents in the tree. All mages pretty much played the same until level 30 to 40 or so. Even with the Cataclysm changes, a Holy, Prot and Ret paladin would pretty much be using Crusader Strike and Judgements until they had several more abilities unlocked.

On your second point, we know some players liked the option of spending some points in the first tree and then some in the second tree. Often this was just a trap for new players though because it delays your getting the 21, 31 and other "gold medal" talents that really define your tree. Experienced players might learn to get a 5/5/5 build or whatever and then respec once they could reach the 31, but we could also just make better trees that didn't ask you to do that. (Source)

How big are the new trees?
They have 38-42 or so points in them. You could spend all 41 points in one tree, though often you'll want a 5/5/31 or a 0/7/34 build instead. Every talent is 1, 2 or 3 talent points. Earlier levels have about 8 points on them (typically a 2, 2, 3) and deeper levels have about 5 points on them (typically a 1, 2, 3). (Source)

New Talent trees overview
They look superficially like vanilla talent trees, but they are far more interesting.

Almost without exception, the talents we cut were the ones everyone took or the ones nobody took. There will still be very attractive talents that probably everyone takes, but there are also definitely choices where you can only take A or B and want both. Typically you might see a useful (but not necessarily dps-enhancing) ability in your own tree, but also a really attractive one in another tree.

This is a good thing. It won't surprise me to see a knee jerk reaction from some players that we're removing their favorite talents and "dumbing down the trees." However, I'd challenge them that there can't be that many players out there that play Arcane because of Mind Mastery or Arms warrior because of Strength of Arms. Yet, if you skip either of those talents, you're just making your character less effective.

A Cataclysm goal is to remove lame or boring talents. Yet we don't want to replace all of those with procs or game-changers. Really the only solution is to have smaller trees where nearly every remaining talent is a big deal. (Source)

Hybrid builds and active talents
You typically won't get active abilities from a second tree. The most you can get in a second tree is 10 points, and usually the active abilities are deeper than this. We think it makes the distinction between say a Frost and Unholy DK more pronounced when all of their talented active abilities are different rather than being able to cherry pick the best from each tree. It does end up killing any chance for a build that goes halfway down two trees, but usually we would consider such builds failures because it meant the bottom of "your" tree wasn't good enough. These were most popular in PvP when players felt compelled to get "must have" PvP survival talents in multiple trees, and those are the kind of talents we want dead anyway.

With these changes though, the talent trees are going to be even more rebuilt than we were already planning with Cataclysm. Talents are moving all over the trees and every tree has new talents as well. We'll give you a chance to see the trees soon (tm). (Source)

Current talents are too complicated
The new model theoretically buys us several more expansions of not having to mess with the overarching talent tree design. In a broader sense though, one of the challenges of working on World of Warcraft is adding new content without making the game totally inaccessible to new players.

I have used this example several times, but we have one very senior designer at Blizzard who isn't working on WoW but obviously knows the game very well and has been very active in PvP and raiding at various points in time. He took a short break from the game (I suspect to play Modern Warfare 2) and when he came back, we had messed around with his class's talent trees and reset his talent points, so he felt like he couldn't jump back into the game again without spending 45 minutes researching what the community thought a good build would be. We're hoping with simpler (but still deep!) talent trees, players like him will feel more comfortable picking their own talents. He might eventually go poke around in theorycrafting forums to min / max his build, but he won't have the moment of being completely overwhelmed when looking at a blank talent tree. (Source)

In previous expansions, more choices were given to the players in terms of how they built their characters. Players were freely given the choice to spend points however they want.
[...] While that is true, they were also given ample opportunities to make mistakes, what we call "traps." A forum-savy player may know which are the dumb talents nobody takes or which are the mandatory ones that might at first glance seem too bland to take. But why have "choices" that are just there for new players or people who just want to swim against the stream just to be different? We'd rather have actual legitimate choices, which we feel like we can offer by having a stable of fewer good talents.

To use one of the infamous GC analogies, the best restaurants are not necessarily those with a lot of entrees on the menu. The best restaurants probably have very few choices, but you know that anything you order will be great. They don't bother cooking it if they know it will suck. That's a real choice as opposed to the diner with fish on the menu that everyone, ever the waitress, whispers under their breath that you should never, ever order. (Source)

Dungeon Finder and new talent system
We expect a lot of players to use Dungeon Finder while leveling up. The feature works great for that, and we're spending some effort to update the older dungeons to not be so overspawned and in some cases to even fit into the zone quest content better.

Likewise, we're making an effort to let tank and healing specs be more effective when soloing. DPS specs will still probably be more efficient leveling, but if you just love the Resto shaman tree, you should be able to quest and run some dungeons without even having a dual-spec. It won't be spectacular, but it will be a huge improvement from today.

Tanks and healers will get basic abilities before level 15 (when Dungeon Finder is available) to do their jobs, but it's also true that the lower level content is more forgiving of your talent spec. (Source)

Vengeance
You get it at level 10 for choosing a tanking tree. It already scaled with your health and incoming damage, so there isn't really a need for it to scale with talent points spent (especially since nearly 100% of tanks spend the most points in a tanking tree). (Source)

Death Knight (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator)
When do DK get to pick a specialization?
When they get their first talent point for completing a quest. (Source)

Deleted talents
Looking at Unholy, talents like Impurity, Desolation, Wandering Plague, Crypt Fever (but not Ebon Plaguebringer) and Rage of Rivendare (sad about the lore hit there) are gone. (Source)

Druid (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator)
Feral builds with the new system
Feral is a challenge. We still want to have a cat-centric, bear-centric or hybrid build. It has always been one of the more challenging trees to work on. (Source)

Omen of Clarity
Likewise, we're not sure what we'll do with Omen yet. The obvious choices are leave it Resto only, put it high enough for everyone to subspec or make it a trained ability. (Source)

Paladin (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator)
Divine Storm @LVL10 for Retribution
Divine Storm is a big deal because Retribution paladins get it at level 10. You'll get a new bottom o' the tree talent. (Source)

Priest (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator)
Mind Flay and Shadowform @LVL1x for Shadow
We really wanted to do this, but the more we thought about it, what does a level 10 Shadowform do? Spam Shadow Word: Pain? We'll probably give Shadow priests Mind Flay at level 10 and let them get Shadowform shortly after that. (Source)

Holy signature ability
We think healers will expect to get an actual heal (or some kind of defensive ability) as their signature spell, but we also want something that's actually useful at level 10. Lightwell, Circle of Healing and even Spirit of Redemption are very signature Holy abilities, but none are very useful when soloing gnolls in Elwynn. (Source)

Rogue (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator)
Preparation
It's a design flaw that rogues and locks are so dependent on Prep and Soul Link respectively. Those talents are currently holding the classes back. Now we can't balance around the assumption that you have those talents so your classes need to function without them. Maybe it means lowering base cooldowns.... (Source)

Shadowstep
Naturally, the 31-point Shadow Dance is totally inaccessible to Rogues speccing other trees. But what about Shadowstep? Is that a tree-specific, unpointed talent that is totally inaccessible to all other specs?
Inaccessible. Shadowstep is essentially no longer a talent. There is nowhere to buy it. You don't get any passive bonuses for picking your second tree. Essentially you choose at level 10 whether to be an Assassination, Combat or Subtlety rogue, and while you can change your mind later, that determines what special ability and what passives you get. (Source)

Shaman (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator / Cataclysm Talent Calculator)
Dual Wield for Enhancement
So now my cagey comments about how Enhancement gets dual-wield right away and Elemental never gets it make more sense. (Source)

Warlock (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator)
Soul Link
It's a design flaw that rogues and locks are so dependent on Prep and Soul Link respectively. Those talents are currently holding the classes back. Now we can't balance around the assumption that you have those talents so your classes need to function without them. Maybe it means lowering base cooldowns.... (Source)

Probably no early Felguard for Demonology
It probably won't be Felguard. It's a little odd to spring that on a warlock that doesn't even have a Voidwalker yet. (Source)

Cool talents aren't going away
Warlocks are hard.

With a mage, you can keep Frost from throwing a lot of Fireballs just by making Frost do Frost damage. The warlocks don't have schools like that, and they have some shared spells, so it's tricky to get them to use the spells we want them to use sometimes. None of the cool talents, the ones that change up what you're doing, such as Molten Core or Backdraft, are going away. (Source)

Warrior (Forums / 3.3.5 Talent Calculator)
Mortal Strike
It depends. Improved Mortal Strike for example is gone and that's just the way Mortal Strike hits now (we added the damage and cooldown into MS). (Source)

Shield Slam @LVL10 for Protection
Protection warriors get Shield Slam (and Arms and Fury lose it). Devastate is still an attractive talent deep in the tree, but it doesn't say "Prot warrior" the way Shield Slam does. (Source)

Toughness stays, Vitality is a passive bonus
Protection has one passive talent, which is Toughness. They get Vitality as a passive for choosing Protection at level 10. The other talents are a mix of threat and defensive abilities, but none are as passive as Deflection. There are (hopefully) attractive talents in the first two tiers of Arms and Fury. The other tank trees will be similar but not identical (Feral as always will be the least similar). (Source)

Specialization Bonus - Anger Management and 2H Weapon Spec for Arms
The Arms one for the moment is Two-Handed Weapon Spec (+10% damage with two-Handed weapons) and Anger Management (free rage). (Source)

Arms - Mastery bonus in Cataclysm
Mastery still exists, but the design is a little cleaner.

Before:
Arms got some passive damage per talent point.
Arms got some passive armor pen per talent point.
Arms got a chance to proc a swing per talent point, which is enhanced by mastery rating on gear.

Now:
Arms gets whatever it needs as passives at level 10.
Arms gets a chance to proc a swing at level 78(ish), which is enhanced by mastery rating on gear.

Mastery now means "proc a swing" for Arms and that's all it means, which is easier to understand. (Source)
This article was originally published in forum thread: Cataclysm Class & Mastery Systems Update started by Boubouille View original post
Comments 699 Comments
  1. Fichek's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by dek View Post
    your problems with the change are all based on the faulty premise that you really had choice before.

    you technically had choices, but it basically allowed you to choose to suck, if you were inclined. as far as actual good specs went, there was very little wiggle room even within the same tree, and pretty much no room between trees.

    if the good spec didn't take the bottom of the tree, that's a failure of design, not a matter of choice. if that is the good spec, then taking the bottom isn't really a choice unless you wanted to suck.

    the blue poster called them traps, and that's what they were.

    they intend to design the trees in such a way that you want to fill out that tree eventually anyways. the choice comes in within that tree. sure, i doubt there will be an overwhelming number of possibilities, but their stated goal is that each possibility will be about on par with the others, meaning you might have fewer things to choose from but actually more valid selections among them.
    Your entire post is based on a faulty premise that i was talking about end-game. No, in actuality it was almost completely directed at leveling experience. But let's get back to your post.
    If we didn't have a choice before and we obviously don't now, what exactly did Blizzard to? So, nothing is changed, more talents are meshed together, some talents become passive bonuses of certain tree, and we are left with is less clicks to get to the bottom of the tree. And they are advertising that as a revolution in talent trees design. Ok.

    And this quote..
    ..meaning you might have fewer things to choose from but actually more valid selections among them.
    .. is somewhat wrong. Like i said, certain talents will always be more suitable for certain roles and therefore will always be picked before some other talent. If you have a talent that improves your dps greatly and on the other hand a talent that increases it moderately and in addition to that you gain survival, you will always pick the first one for pve, and second for pvp. Illusion of choice is a wonderful thing. You never actually had a choice if you wanted to max your performance. So i ask you again, what has changed exactly? Nothing. You will use the same skills as before (in addition to new ones which you would get even with the bloated talent trees), you will "choose" the same talents as everyone else of your class/spec and all the while you will be thinking how deep and full of choice this new system is. On the other hand, while leveling you are heavily restricted, limited to one tree and you will miss some great talents for leveling in other trees that you would otherwise take. That is my biggest beef with the new system. They could do it that you only get the "signature ability" if certain tree is 3 points ahead all other trees.. That way you are a bit punished for building a hybrid, but in the end it's still your choice to make, and most importantly, you can make that choice..
  1. lordcanyon's Avatar
    if tons stopped playing before wrath of the lich king then just wait, even more will quit now.

    i'm confused as to how many talent points we get, 51 works out right but i hear 41, 45, or 51 points.

    they just screwed me so bad when it comes to my priest...
    i'll probably need to be a 24/26/0 or 23/24/0 but no their probably gonna make me a worse priest by forcing me to not be able to pick the talents i need in another tree.
  1. Skulver's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by dek View Post
    your problems with the change are all based on the faulty premise that you really had choice before.

    you technically had choices, but it basically allowed you to choose to suck, if you were inclined. as far as actual good specs went, there was very little wiggle room even within the same tree, and pretty much no room between trees.

    if the good spec didn't take the bottom of the tree, that's a failure of design, not a matter of choice. if that is the good spec, then taking the bottom isn't really a choice unless you wanted to suck.

    the blue poster called them traps, and that's what they were.

    they intend to design the trees in such a way that you want to fill out that tree eventually anyways. the choice comes in within that tree. sure, i doubt there will be an overwhelming number of possibilities, but their stated goal is that each possibility will be about on par with the others, meaning you might have fewer things to choose from but actually more valid selections among them.
    If you believe that there won't be cookie cutter DPS (or tank, or healing) specs for every class then you are being a bit naieve. If you play a DPS class a talent is only interesting if it translates into increased DPS. A reduced cooldown on Death Grip for example, while no doubt fitting Blizzards definition of an interesting talent is utterly useless in a raid DPS build. So Blizzard are faced with a fail fail situation. If someone ends up with so few DPS boosting talents in the tree that they end up taking utility or "fun" talents instead they will feel like they are wasting those talent points. Do you really think people will be cheering when they realise there is so little useful stuff to take that they have to spend some of their (now much fewer) talents on things that provide no benefit whatsoever to what they are doing? On the other hand if all the talents somehow translate into extra DPS there will, in very little time, emerge cookie cutter specs just like we have now.

    How "interesting" is defined from a talent perspective varies based on the goal. If you want to do more DPS any talent that doesn't provide that fails to be interesting by definition and if you are forced to take it because of a lack of interesting options it will feel like you have been forced to waste talent points. The problem is while one person sees having 10 talent points left over after getting the interesting options as an opportunity to pick something useful to something else (bgs, 5 mans, arenas, etc) another will see having 10 talent points left over as being forced to waste 10 talent points on useless crap.

    I am sure many specs now have a point where you need to spend 2 or 3 talents to get to the next level down without anything worth spending them on. When you spend those few points on something that provides no real benefit to you just so you can reach the talents that do provide a benefit does that feel like an interesting choice to you? Putting people in the situation where they have to do that a lot seems to be the goal of this talent overhaul.
  1. Bearcub's Avatar
    one word awesome (:
  1. Nuronv's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Multigasm View Post
    I highly doubt that they would make Arcane Mage the only DPS class to not get a DPS talent in the 31st point spot, if they did that would be the biggest slap in the face to everyone that plays arcane. With that being said I dont know if I should be exictied or scared that Mages are the only class they didnt make reference to in the Blue Post :-|
    They did make a reference to Water Elemental's in there somewhere, I picked slow because because it would really add some layer of control to a spec that would otherwise be without it whilst levelling. I would say on second thought Arcane Missles would be a better choice, what do you think of when you think of Arcane mages? PEW PEW PEW.
    I was actually going to put shadowstep for Sub Rogues but then i thought the exact thing that you commented on slow about. You are suggesting you give a DPS class a utility ability. But i do agree, when i think what defines a Subtlety rogue it is Shadowstep.

    Holy Shock is going baseline so that is not going to be the holy baseline ability. It could possibly be beacon or there is the possibility that they give entirely new abilities as the base ability but I doubt it.
    It was going to be baseline but that was before they announced this talent shake up, also they stated Prot Warriors would be getting Shield Slam as theirs which is currently baseline. It would also be a very good levelling spell as it provides two purposes.

    Chaosbolt is likely, and Unstable Affliction is a possibility (though I doubt it).
    Demonology not a Felguard. You are still collecting demons then so giving a demon lock the be-all end-all pet right at the start is asinine.
    The Demon tree is centered around beefing or using your pet powers. So any of the talents that beefs pets is most likely to be added: Master Dem., Dem Emp. or Dem. Pact are much more likely candidates to start off with from the start.

    They could also emphasize the link with the Demon and give the Fel Synergy, Manatap or Dem. Knowledge talents to give a more dynamic link with the demons.

    Honestly I'd love Demonic Pact for early locks. It's currently a signature ability of Demon Locks, even more so then the Felguard or Meta.
    I would agree, Warlocks are my weak spot (the only class I don't have at the mo) , my train of thought was that if you see a Warlock with Felguard you instantly know its a demonologist. Meta seems a bit too potent, you don't want to give people the most exciting ability straight away. I agree with what you say about emphasizing the link between the Demon and Pet
  1. Spl4sh3r's Avatar
    People whine about getting less choices when they actually get more. Most people don't even choose their talents they just go with what everyone else thinks is best (which mostly is the best :P) where is the choice in that? Now that there is no math in the new talent system (atleast not from the beginning) you get to choose alot by yourself plus there will be no more choice between bad talents and good talents since there won't hardly be any bad talents.

    Also for those who QQ about having to pick 31 talents in one tree before going into the other don't even know why there are three different trees in the first place. You are meant to specialize in one tree. Think of it as choosing between 3 different jobs. Doctor, Chef and Lawyer. Would you rather be bad at all 3 jobs or good in one of them?
  1. Karot's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by lordcanyon View Post
    if tons stopped playing before wrath of the lich king then just wait, even more will quit now.

    i'm confused as to how many talent points we get, 51 works out right but i hear 41, 45, or 51 points.

    they just screwed me so bad when it comes to my priest...
    i'll probably need to be a 24/26/0 or 23/24/0 but no their probably gonna make me a worse priest by forcing me to not be able to pick the talents i need in another tree.
    I think you've been just skimming over the blue posts without reading them fully. They've already said they're going to be moving certain talents amongst the different trees so that stuff fits better. You won't have to spec halfway down another tree to be the best at your spec. Though it may still be legit to do so at higher levels.
  1. Raynhard's Avatar
    It reads like:

    1 year ago: Yeah we remove all shitty talents and replace them with cool one's where you have to choose between
    Now: Yeah our designers got nothing cool into their minds in the last 12 months so we still remove half of the talents and half your talentpoint pool, too



    I'm stil curious about the new talent trees, though.
  1. evan_s's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Skulver View Post
    If you believe that there won't be cookie cutter DPS (or tank, or healing) specs for every class then you are being a bit naieve. If you play a DPS class a talent is only interesting if it translates into increased DPS. A reduced cooldown on Death Grip for example, while no doubt fitting Blizzards definition of an interesting talent is utterly useless in a raid DPS build. So Blizzard are faced with a fail fail situation. If someone ends up with so few DPS boosting talents in the tree that they end up taking utility or "fun" talents instead they will feel like they are wasting those talent points. Do you really think people will be cheering when they realise there is so little useful stuff to take that they have to spend some of their (now much fewer) talents on things that provide no benefit whatsoever to what they are doing? On the other hand if all the talents somehow translate into extra DPS there will, in very little time, emerge cookie cutter specs just like we have now.

    How "interesting" is defined from a talent perspective varies based on the goal. If you want to do more DPS any talent that doesn't provide that fails to be interesting by definition and if you are forced to take it because of a lack of interesting options it will feel like you have been forced to waste talent points. The problem is while one person sees having 10 talent points left over after getting the interesting options as an opportunity to pick something useful to something else (bgs, 5 mans, arenas, etc) another will see having 10 talent points left over as being forced to waste 10 talent points on useless crap.

    I am sure many specs now have a point where you need to spend 2 or 3 talents to get to the next level down without anything worth spending them on. When you spend those few points on something that provides no real benefit to you just so you can reach the talents that do provide a benefit does that feel like an interesting choice to you? Putting people in the situation where they have to do that a lot seems to be the goal of this talent overhaul.
    I think there is room for "interesting" talent choices that don't have to impact your dps/tanking/healing.

    I have a warlock as one of my alts and I could see choosing between Shadowfury, and Nether Protection as an interesting choice. Neither is going to directly increase my dps but both provide useful utility in both PvP and raids. I could also see things like IMP soul leach having their personal benefit separated from the raid buff by either just removing it or moving it into a separate talent. Do I take this useful but possibly redundant raid buff talent for 1 point or pick up one of the previously mentioned talents. These are interesting and meaningful choices that won't have a cookie cutter, this is the best dps option.

    With out having seen the talent tree's it's hard to condemn them as being either pointless or cookie cutter.
  1. Predikari's Avatar
    Sounds like it could be the best thing blizzard has done in a long time, i'm all for this.
  1. Fichek's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by evan_s View Post
    I think there is room for "interesting" talent choices that don't have to impact your dps/tanking/healing.

    I have a warlock as one of my alts and I could see choosing between Shadowfury, and Nether Protection as an interesting choice. Neither is going to directly increase my dps but both provide useful utility in both PvP and raids. I could also see things like IMP soul leach having their personal benefit separated from the raid buff by either just removing it or moving it into a separate talent. Do I take this useful but possibly redundant raid buff talent for 1 point or pick up one of the previously mentioned talents. These are interesting and meaningful choices that won't have a cookie cutter, this is the best dps option.

    With out having seen the talent tree's it's hard to condemn them as being either pointless or cookie cutter.
    Well, let's take your example. You say Shadowfury and Nether Protection.. You have that choice to make right now. Both of those are available. And what happens? Every destro pvp lock will have both. And neither destro pve lock will have Nether Protection and most of them will have Shadowfury because it's only 1 point so you are not losing much even if it's useful only in certain encounters. Do you understand now?
  1. sabrelime's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Alsmir View Post
    First of all, there seem to be many ppl saying that it will make leveling more fun and enjoyable, but I couldn't care less. I'd rather have one class that I'm playing for a long time I know that class and its mechanics well and I can actually play it both in pvp and pve at decent level. I don't want to reroll every patch, like many ppl do.

    Secondly I liked having a choice when specing my character. I've spent thousands of gold on respecs and tested carefully every single talent my character has just to be able to use them efficiently. I hate the idea of dumbing down WoW just to please some new customers.
    Omfg this is great. You expect us to believe you went out and respeced hundreds of times to figure out what talents were best?? I mean EJ does exist for a reason. Hell testing like this would be so impractical there isn't even a shadow of a doubt that you got any useful results from it, even though I doubt you ever did to begin with.
  1. evan_s's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Fichek View Post
    Well, let's take your example. You say Shadowfury and Nether Protection.. You have that choice to make right now. Both of those are available. And what happens? Every destro pvp lock will have both. And neither destro pve lock will have Nether Protection and most of them will have Shadowfury because it's only 1 point so you are not losing much even if it's useful only in certain encounters. Do you understand now?
    Actually the 2 top cookie cutter Destruction specs don't have Shadowfury because they take too much of a loss taking a point from either IMP Soul Leach or Uhholy power. Generally, the only time you do see Shadowfury in PvE is when Destruction locks need to take Suppression for the hit and are left with a couple spare talents there. Anyway it was just an example of the types of choices that could be "interesting", in my opinion, but aren't going to be something that aren't going to affect your dps to lead to a cookie cutter "best" dps spec.
  1. insertuseralias's Avatar
    I can't vouch for rogues since mine is only a level 35 but my lock has never relied on Soul Link unless I either went with my 29/42/0 build so I could solo instances for rep/mount farming or if I used it for some pvp builds. I assume that comment was geared towards arena and pvp because the only time I see people pick up Soul Link are instances like those or if they are demo.

    *EDIT* Oh, and as far as the talents go, I am very interested in seeing how this works. I either seeing this being total win or complete fail. Personally, I am hoping this ends up being amazing and living up to Blizz's expectations. I do like that they are actually giving players core abilities to their trees at lover levels. About time! (Now just fix lock aggro for real this time and I will be happy)
  1. Orbital's Avatar
    I'm wondering if we will have all our talent points refunded or I'll need to pay 5g in order to respec...
  1. Peeb's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Duster505 View Post
    I think this is a huge mistake and takes alot from the the game. Forcing ppl to spec into just one tree is potential game killer. How many healers? You are litterally forcing ppl that want to play healers to spec something else for long portion of the game. Instead of allowing them to spec healing and pick some decent dmg hybrid combos.

    From my perspective... it makes WOW even more of a themepark... Its not like devs needed to control the first 40 levels ? The control is needed in the latter 40....

    The potential of damgaging the balance of healer - tank - dps balance is huge IMO. Blizzard is forcing ppl to play DPS for the start. Its not like dps ppl were needed in this game?
    Did you even read the posts?
  1. insertuseralias's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Fichek View Post
    Well, let's take your example. You say Shadowfury and Nether Protection.. You have that choice to make right now. Both of those are available. And what happens? Every destro pvp lock will have both. And neither destro pve lock will have Nether Protection and most of them will have Shadowfury because it's only 1 point so you are not losing much even if it's useful only in certain encounters. Do you understand now?
    With Imp Gun spec and ISL Spec (the top 2 go-to pve specs for destro locks) you don't pick up either Shadowfury or NP. People only really pick up Shadowflame for pve in 3 cases.

    1) Your group lacks stuns/cc and the RL asked you grab it.
    2) You're grinding/farming and want a CC for whatever reason.
    3) Or the most likely scenerio, you went with the suppression spec because you don't have the gear to be hit capped without it yet and you need something for filler for those extra points in that spec (which you said).

    In hindsight, outside of pvp you are rarely using that talent so imho it's a wasted talent. I would rather put the 1 point into Soul Leech for a little heals here and there. Also with the rate people get gear now, there really isn't much point to grabbing the hit spec for a prolonged period of time. Personally, that's what gems, chants, spriests, and boomies are for! lol
  1. Kuja's Avatar
    666 comments :O

    i hope retris don't have to go into holy or prot tree to pick up talents which do not increase dps after this
  1. Azalu's Avatar
    All I see is, if the talent for +15% crit chance with pennance and smite stays. Leveling my disc priest is gonna be a walk in the park with Pennance at 10
  1. Arandmoor's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Kazuun View Post
    31 point trees. And we will be force do spend all 31 talent points to be able to put them in another one. So for me it seems that now there will be no "builds" because you will have to complete one tree in 100%. So where are the differences between PvP and PvE builds? In my equipment?
    When they say "31-point trees" they don't mean that there's exactly 31 points worth of talents in the entire tree. They mean it will take 31 points to get to the bottom of the tree. Also, you completely ignored/skipped/raged-past the part where GC states that each talent now ranges from 1-3 points each, and each tree has 20-30 talents each. That means that unless every talent (barring a single 2-point talent) is a one point talent, you can't max a tree with only 31 points.

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