MMO-Champion - Mists of Pandaria Buff and Debuff Design
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Mists of Pandaria Buff and Debuff Design
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
We recently released an update to the Mists of Pandaria talent tree. Since the expansion is still in development, these updates represent a snapshot of where we are at any given moment and not a final design where we step back and say “Ladies and gentlemen, we have achieved perfection. Let us not change a thing.” If you’ve been playing the game for a while, you’ve probably realized by now that we never think we’ll hit perfection, and we probably never will.

One design that we haven’t focused on much yet is the plan for various group buffs and debuffs. Some specs have their buffs in place and some do not. Rather than trying to describe each omission, we thought we’d just dump the whole design on you here. As with the rest of the expansion’s systems, we’re not even in beta yet, so there’s plenty of time for things to change.

First, some underlying design goals, so you might understand where we’re coming from. Our main goals for group buffs are:


  • Make you feel more powerful when grouped with other players.
  • Give you lots of freedom to invite whom you want. This gets to be a problem when there are too many mandatory buffs spread out among too many specs. . .
  • …But not offer too many incentives to class stack. If you can achieve every buff with, say, only three players, then there might be a tendency to fill all of the other slots with whoever is best for a particular situation. Some class stacking is inevitable at the cutting-edge level, but to some extent, the players on the cutting edge of raiding enjoy extreme min-maxing. For the rest of us, we try to make sure you can finish all of the encounters without feeling like you need a huge roster of folks waiting in the wings for their one fight.
  • We tend to be more generous to DPS specs, since groups -- especially raids -- already have ample reasons to bring tanks and healers.
  • We generally don’t want a DPS spec to have to switch to a different spec in the same role just to bring a different buff. An example would be a Combat rogue who has to go Assassination just for a buff. In our experience, players are less likely to switch from a ranged to a melee DPS spec just for a buff, so DPS shaman and DPS druids might bring different buffs.

And finally some notes on the categories below:


  • The list only includes what we consider “traditional” buffs, such as Prayer of Fortitude. It doesn’t include utility like being great at snaring, battle rez, knock backs, high DPS while moving, and other mechanics. Those ultimately all factor into a raid or Battleground comp as well.
  • The matrix is a little more complex than it appears. A paladin, for example, can only offer one Blessing at a time, while a warrior can only do one shout at a time. You can’t assume one character can cover every buff or debuff listed below at the same time.
  • Some of these are active (you must cast them, like Prayer of Fortitude) while others are passive. Note that totems no longer bring passive buffs as a rule.
  • You’ll see several categories consolidated or gone. Bleeds no longer made sense, since everyone who cared about bleeds already buffed themselves. Magical resistance we just removed from the game, though there are some abilities that provide magical damage reduction.
  • We are still likely to use the design that hunters, especially Beastmaster hunters, can fill in for missing buffs or debuffs by using certain pets.

As always, we’d love to get your feedback on this design.

Buffs

Stats
Effect: +5% Strength, Agility, and Intellect
Example: Blessing of Kings
Brought by: Any druid, any monk, any paladin

Stamina
Effect: +10% Stamina
Example: Power Word: Fortitude
Brought by: Any priest, any warlock, any warrior

Attack Power
Effect: +10% melee and ranged attack power (which will be the same value again)
Example: Battle Shout
Brought by: Any death knight, any hunter, any warrior

Spell Power
Effect: +10% spell power (there will no longer be a 6% version)
Example: Arcane Brilliance
Brought by: Any mage, any shaman, any warlock

Haste
Effect: +10% melee and ranged haste
Example: Improved Icy Talons
Brought by: Frost and Unholy death knights, any rogue, Enhancement shaman

Spell Haste
Effect: +5% spell haste
Example: Moonkin Aura
Brought by: Balance druids, Shadow priests, Elemental shaman

Critical Strike
Effect: +5% ranged, melee, and spell critical chance
Example: Leader of the Pack
Brought by: Guardian and Feral druids, any hunter, any mage

Mastery
Effect: +5 mastery
Example: This is a new category
Brought by: Windwalker monks, any paladin, any shaman

Debuffs

Weakened Armor
Effect: -12% armor
Example: Sunder Armor
Brought by: Any druid, any rogue, any warrior

Physical Vulnerability
Effect: +4% physical damage taken
Example: Brittle Bones
Brought by: Frost and Unholy death knights, Retribution paladins, Arms and Fury warriors

Magic Vulnerability
Effect: +8% spell damage taken
Example: Curse of the Elements
Brought by: Any rogue, any warlock

Weakened Blows
Effect: -10% physical damage done
Example: Previously Demoralizing Shout; now Thunder Clap
Brought by: Blood death knight, Feral and Guardian druid, Brewmaster monk, Protection or Retribution paladin, any warrior (any tank)

Slow Casting

Effect: -30% casting speed
Example: Mind-numbing Poison
Brought by: Any death knight, any rogue, any warlock

Mortal Wounds
Effect: -25% healing received
Example: Mortal Strike
Brought by: Arms or Fury warrior, any rogue, any hunter

Greg “Ghostcrawler” Street is the lead systems designer for World of Warcraft. He was unsuccessful in convincing the rest of the class team to change Arms warrior mastery to decreased falling damage taken.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Mists of Pandaria Buff and Debuff Design started by chaud View original post
Comments 231 Comments
  1. Nitrax's Avatar
    This is just silly. These or current buffs don't make you feel stronger when in a group because guess what, either you are in a group doing group-related stuff, or you are solo doing solo-related stuff. You never think "wow, yesterday i tried this 5-man instance with my warrior solo i really missed that 10% attack power buff".
  1. gcsmith's Avatar
    wow removing mages ability to bring raid debuffs. nice move.
  1. Sariengrey's Avatar
    umm yeah why dont mages bring any sort of debuff?, so many other classes do, some several different one, yet mages none, seems fair yes?.... no not really ,give mages a debuffing ability as well, ....geez ,spread it around....
  1. Farora's Avatar
    Change for the sake of change again really. Don't see improvements.
  1. Korru's Avatar
    Seriously get rid of the buff/debuff system and balance the classes right if they want everyone to have a fair chance having a spot in a raid...
  1. cateran100's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Bombkirby View Post
    Because buffs/debuffs give you a reason to group up. Grouping with other players literally makes you stronger than playing solo because you get stat boosts. Thats the only reason Buffs exist really.*
    Ahahaha..this is the mark of a good mmo...team up with others because of the buffs....
  1. Letharg's Avatar
    Since i wasnt very specific in my last reply ill write down my thoughts again.

    I think it looks ok overall but the biggest 2 problems I see (like many others) are spellhaste and the spelldmge debuff.
    Giving Spellhaste only to hybrid casters it feels like you are forced to play them when you are playing a shaman/druid/priest. with this you wont have a chance to bring a feral or enhancement anymore and you will probably bring only one (the strongest dps) of those three classes as damage dealer.

    concerning the 8% spell damage 2 classes are just too few but I can understand why they took them away from dk and moonkin.
    Dk: they dont want that you have to switch from frost to unholy only that you bring a debuff and you should rather play which specc you like.
    Moonkin: They want you to feel more powerfull in a group and right know Moonkin brings (almost) all buffs he needs. 5% stats, 3% spellhaste and 8% spelldamage (so only 5% crit and debuff and spellpower are missing). While this isnt a problem for the raidgroup you really dont feel to much of a difference in your damage when you are in a group since you bring most of your important buffs yourself.

    I still think they should (and they will) give those 8% to someone else and not only warlocks and rogues.
  1. Loremater Ime's Avatar
    Not too suprising the talent trees looks awful for paladins, glad I made the decision not to continue in MoP. tier 1: get to someone maybe (get rooted) every 1 min, hardly get close to someone 45% (due to slows), or run abit silly faster. tier 2: Fist of justice or hammer of justice hmm not much diff there, repentence (would be good if it was free, but mostly only good against mages who will get away from us anyway) burden of guilt (could be good if it was'nt for 10billion stuns, slows, disorients). tier 3: Selfless healer (good option in 2s and 3s, but with the selection between that and our already crappy survival "sacred shield in same tier") that one removes most of our support in pvp, eternal flame abit to pointless does'nt seem to heal for too much, much like a renew) tier4: hmm as ret pvp hand of purity or divine purpose, though call but since we lack mostly survival skills, we probably are forced into hand of purity sanctified wrath is kinda useless for ret pvp unless target is below 20%. tier 5: dont know if I should laugh or cry, 1 good option as ret execution sentence (depending on if we will ever reach target or not) I dont see any perks that would make me stick around with this utterly boring talents imo, spliting up paladin class even more without even improving.
  1. Ogrihai's Avatar
    Okay, I know I am being silly now but why should my hunter get a raid spot really? In a ten man raiding guild where he is forced to cover some buff with his pet as BM (the only spec that is the exception to the "generally rule " in the sentence: "We generally don’t want a DPS spec to have to switch to a different spec in the same role just to bring a different buff.") as most of the two or three standard buffs he bring otherwise are very well covered anyways. I seldom QQ, but where is da hunta love moon!
  1. Pasture's Avatar
    Speaking as a 10 man guild, the 5% spell haste needs to go to someone else. Hybrid casters are in short supply in 10 mans.
  1. Descense's Avatar
    As a hunter i disaprove this. I DONT LIKE ALL PETS!!
  1. Mazzer's Avatar
    There is 6 debuffs and rogue can give (have?) 4 of them. Truly PvP balanced game again.
  1. cerbul's Avatar
    1. Remove Dark Intent. I am tired of sitting the bench depending on how warlocks have good attendance or not.

    2. Simple logical deduction:
    We want 10 ppl raids to be harder then 25. ->
    We want 10 ppl raids difficulty to NOT be balanced around the chance that they are able or not to bring all buffs to a raid. ->
    We want Blizzard to consider the fact that this WILL imply that there will be some class stacking in 25 ppl. ->
    We want Blizzard to NOT ALLOW such a huge difference between a raid that stacks 1-2 classes, and one that is balanced spec/class wise. ->
    This will mean that classes will have to be balanced around both BURST DPS AND OVERALL DPS. WE WANT BLIZZARD TO CONSIDER THIS WHEN THEY ARE MAKING PVP PLANS FOR THE GAME.
    See what I did there?

    3. If you insist on making same titles/mounts/gear/realm first/achievement as rewards for both 10 and 25 ppl, then read again point 2 !!!
  1. davep's Avatar
    I find it funny that a lot of people are saying "get rid of Dark Intent" when they haven't even seen what Dark Intent was changed to... Dark Intent: Infuses all party and raid members with shadow, increasing their spell power by 10% for 1 hour. AKA Warlocks Arcane Brilliance.
  1. wowmagic's Avatar
    Yup, and this is what I am reading for mages... Arcane mages are losing Slow (which is the ONLY viable snare for arcane) and frost(/fire/arcane) are losing the healing debuff... as someone said above, they are really screwing mages... We bring NO debuffs, we bring only 2 buffs... We are a 'pure' class, so it is not an option to fill another role. On top of all that, our buffs can be brought by... wait for it... HYBRID CLASSES!!!! YAY!!!!!. Shaman can bring the spellpower, and druids can bring the crit!!! awesome. just awesome. Screw you too blizz. /end rant
  1. Yun's Avatar
    hm seems like enhancement shaman keep on having a tough time. if you want to bring melee hase, you rather bring a dk cause he also brings attackpower. for mastery you bring an elemental shaman. seems like i have to respecc into the unloved.
  1. Scummer's Avatar
    I don't feel DPS needs a change is style to make them more accessible raid when they are already the most popular role currently. While we know you need a tank they should focus on making actually playing a tank more appealing.
  1. Ravensword's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Yun View Post
    hm seems like enhancement shaman keep on having a tough time. if you want to bring melee hase, you rather bring a dk cause he also brings attackpower. for mastery you bring an elemental shaman. seems like i have to respecc into the unloved.
    Yeah go to agree on this one, would have like to have kept the attack power buff :-(
  1. Djaye's Avatar
    /clap

    GG blizz, this actually makes too much sense to say anything else. if this is the direction all the changes are taking for MoP, it looks overly promising. cant wait to see what they come up with to get people out of cities, and back in the world (supposedly one of their main goals for MoP).
  1. ibnalail's Avatar
    I maintain they distributed buffs and debuffs this time around by throwing darts at index cards stuck to the wall.
    Our main goals for group buffs are:Make you feel more powerful when grouped with other players.
    The hit the nail on the head with Enh shamans. It's hard not to feel more powerful in a group when you don't have any buffs that actually benefit you in your own arsenal.

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