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  1. #1

    Low representation of Feral

    Hi all,

    I have thought for quite a while that ferals seem to be the least played spec in game. Personally I have been playing one for many years now and love it, although I would love a few tweaks I wont lie.
    But I wasn't sure if they were the lowest played spec around. I was saddened to see a chart indicating that finally it might really be the case.

    Lei Shen Kills-

    Class Range/Melee % Normal Distribution % Heroic Distribution % Change from Normal to Heroic
    Druid Range 5.14% 8.80% 171.29%
    Rogue Melee 9.16% 11.54% 125.92%
    Priest Range 8.45% 9.13% 108.00%
    Mage Range 13.89% 14.33% 103.19%
    Warlock Range 15.66% 16.05% 102.47%
    Shaman Range 8.64% 8.68% 100.35%
    DK Melee 5.91% 5.83% 98.61%
    Shaman Melee 3.33% 2.97% 89.17%
    Warrior Melee 5.46% 4.67% 85.43%
    Hunter Range 14.94% 12.48% 83.52%
    Druid Melee 1.86% 1.34% 71.76%
    Paladin Melee 4.79% 2.81% 58.77%
    Monk Melee 2.76% 1.38% 50.15%


    I know this isn't 100% accurate as much as things can never be 100% in these cases, but its a great indicator to show the state of feral and its playerbase.
    (credit must go to Adornus for info)

    I know that quite a lot of people are not that fond of the spec, its different playstyle and its complexity compared to other specs, Personally that is what draws me in.

    Also is this the reason why feral is the only spec which seems to be ignored the most in patch notes (PVE feral that is)
    For example, If I am no incorrect, we have had zero feedback on why our DoC has been reverted apart from *it is reverted now* They billed it up to be a playstyle change to lower complexity and then turn it back into a nurfed version without feedback.

    I don't care about the numbers atm, its the lack of attention the spec often gets. What do you think?

  2. #2
    Bloodsail Admiral dashflash890's Avatar
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    Everybody wants "FACEROLL LITTLE EFFORT MAX DPS" classes now and mostly range. Monks are in our position also. Blizzard keeps buffing the same 2 classes (Mages and Warlocks) while other specs just can't compare to them even with the same skill level. They just stop caring I'm starting to think they gave up with balancing classes ok now look at hunter and monk pve dps and now compare it to a fire mage at the same skill level and gear. The fire mage will just out dps them with ease.
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  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by dashflash890 View Post
    Everybody wants "FACEROLL LITTLE EFFORT MAX DPS" classes now and mostly range. Monks are in our position also. Blizzard keeps buffing the same 2 classes (Mages and Warlocks) while other specs just can't compare to them even with the same skill level. They just stop caring I'm starting to think they gave up with balancing classes ok now look at hunter and monk pve dps and now compare it to a fire mage at the same skill level and gear. The fire mage will just out dps them with ease.
    While this is a crappy post, I do agree with you partly. It seems some classes needs the extrea effort to just be on pair, not better.
    One reason for WoW decline I often hear is that its an old game and naturally people get bored with it. But TV is much older and people still watch that. Surely if a thing you once enjoyed keept staying fun, you would still use it?

  4. #4
    Pandaren Monk Moosie's Avatar
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    The problem is not that feral is hard, you would be suprised at how many people actually prefer a more difficult spec, the problem is that druid only has 1 melee spec, this drives people away from it and to another class, such as rogues, where they have 3 melee specs to rely on, chances of 1 of them been top of the pack is extremely high. Not only that but feral has, and probably always will be notorious for causing problems in pvp, and thus it gets heavily effected in pve, most people just get sick of the constant changes and go elsewhere.

    Balance, while up there, is favored in ToT due to the amount of fights were multi-dotters excel.
    Moosie <After Hours> : Feral / Restoration

  5. #5
    ^ what he said to the T.

  6. #6
    Complexity is probably an issue at lower skill levels. At higher skill levels Feral doesn't bring enough to the table. Most raids are 10 man and Ferals are outclassed by Rogues in every category in a 10 man. Since they use the same gear most raids will choose the Rogue. Your numbers show Ferals only have 10% the representation that Rogues do but I expect if you broke it down to 10 man and 25 man you would find most of those are in 25 man.

  7. #7
    Pandaren Monk Moosie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by teddabear View Post
    Complexity is probably an issue at lower skill levels. At higher skill levels Feral doesn't bring enough to the table. Most raids are 10 man and Ferals are outclassed by Rogues in every category in a 10 man. Since they use the same gear most raids will choose the Rogue. Your numbers show Ferals only have 10% the representation that Rogues do but I expect if you broke it down to 10 man and 25 man you would find most of those are in 25 man.
    You also need to remember that all 3 rogue specs in his list fit into 1 category, where as feral is 1 quarter of all the druids. Half of your arugement is quiet frankly wrong though. Ferals do bring a lot to a raid, even in a 10 man. Stampeding roar, an extremely strong raid CD (Hotw Tranq), potential for some pretty good off-healing, symbiosis (mainly for extra tranq cds, and immunities to soak), instant cc/combat res. While most of this is useless for ferals in 25 man, in 10 man it can be the difference between an average feral, and a good feral.
    Last edited by Moosie; 2013-08-18 at 07:41 PM.
    Moosie <After Hours> : Feral / Restoration

  8. #8
    Well we were talking about Heroic Lei Shen kills so I would expect almost all the Rogues to be Assassination. It does look like their is a small chunk of Combat Rogues but I believe Assassination has been the top DPS spec for Rogues since Icecrown. One thing I have not been able to figure out is why Feral DPS drops so much from 25 man to 10 man. While some of this is certainly attributable to ignoring fight mechanics the drop seems larger than that.

    I found the original post with 25 man and 10 man numbers. Rep was about the same except 10 man saw a significantly larger drop for Heroics which is not surprising. I still think it comes down to "if you are going to bring a melee bring a Rogue" which hurts Feral and Monks badly. The Plate DPS may be brought just so gear doesn't get DE'd. Plate DPS have about 4x the representation of Ferals but still less than half the representation of Warlocks and Mages.
    Last edited by teddabear; 2013-08-19 at 12:05 PM. Reason: Typos

  9. #9
    The Lightbringer Danishpsycho's Avatar
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    Another problem we need to keep in mind, is the fact that specially in 10 man, the other Druid specs are better and more popular than Feral. When looking at it from a gear perspective, we're on the same token as Mage, Rogue and DK and both Mage and Rogue are preferred over Feral in most situations. There's no point in bringing a Feral, if you have a Rogue or even a DK. Resto Druids and Balance Druids are far more popular and nobody wants a raid with half the people on the same token.

    About utility: Well, Stampeding Roar is a talent that every Druid spec has, so no need to bring a Feral just for that. Feral Tranq without HotW is a joke and DK's can instant CR as well - unless they don't have RP ofc but that shouldn't happen tbh. Come 5.4 NS is gone from all Druid specs bar Resto, so that's not a viable reason either. Rogues got an immunity ability and don't have to rely on Symbiosis on a Priest. That leaves HotW but in MoP DoC has been the best talent for people who could play it ofc. So going with HotW just to be able to off heal isn't really reason enough to bring Feral either imo. Lots of other hybrids bring off healing without having to sacrifice a dps talent to do so. Boomkins, Shadow Priests and Shamans can off heal on a much lower CD.

    I main a Bear tank and only play Feral on the rare occasion like Durumu and Ra-den. And I have to admit, that I was surprised to see myself getting ranked on both fights. I mean, I rank on Ra-den in bear gear while having to go bear form and tank the add. That goes to show how few Ferals have done that fight at least, cause I can guarantee you that my dps isn't impressive (I even got ranked after having to heal with HotW during the execute phase......).

    So yeah, I think Feral's are in the same boat as Ret Paladins. Cause who would wanna bring a Ret, when Prot is OP, Holy is good and they're on the same token as OP Disc Priests and Warlocks.

    It's not just about what Ferals bring or don't bring, it's not just about how hard they are to master, it's also about who they share gear/tokens with and how the other Druid specs are doing.

  10. #10
    I occasionally pressure guildmates to make feral druid alts and these are some of the objections I've heard.

    • Don't want to play a challenging spec for an alt (especially second, third, fourth alt).
    • Don't want to be a cat all the time.
    • Don't like that they have to get Rune of Re-Origination or they're gimped for the rest of the expansion.

    ...our alt roster now has 1 feral druid compared to 7 rogue, 4 enhancement, 4 windwalker. (To be fair, enhancement would be lower if it weren't for their ridiculously strong offhealing this tier.)
    Last edited by Aseyhe; 2013-08-19 at 12:12 AM.

  11. #11
    Dont see a problem that few ppl play feral, it is a good specc for progress if you know how to play. The problem why so few play feral is that melee is almost always worse then range and compare to a rogue you have to play twice as good for the same damage, and thats not somting most ppl want to do. Just be happy that they havent nerf ferals rotation and hope they might make some other classes atleast somewhat challange to play

  12. #12
    The Patient Arcanian's Avatar
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    Historically Druid tanks have been the least popular, however take in consideration that Druids are the 2nd most popular class. Most Druids are healers so I think it's about balance really (no pun intended). If bear tanks were buffed would it really increase the population by a significant amount? I do agree that Ferals need more of an identity ; something that makes them more distinct from their warrior/rogue brothers. I also miss the days when druids were a jack of all trades class.

  13. #13
    I use to be a feral back in cata when i was doing alot of 2s with my Rsham buddy. It does look complex but i did get used it but now i am mostly doing pve and dont really enjoy the pve playstyle of feral in mop.
    Quote Originally Posted by Validity View Post
    If rogues become shit, all they can become is a different type of shit.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by pkm View Post
    I use to be a feral back in cata when i was doing alot of 2s with my Rsham buddy. It does look complex but i did get used it but now i am mostly doing pve and dont really enjoy the pve playstyle of feral in mop.
    The PVE playstyle has changed little since Cata (In my opinion) but pkm brings up a good point here. There are a *lot* of PVP Ferals- which I think skews the numbers overall (at least this season). I know quiet a few druids (2300+) that pvp as feral but would never clear PVE content with the spec-they'd rather be resto or boomkin.

    Spec popularity is also a 'problem' in the wow community-they see a druid most assume you heal or are the ranged DPS because that is what most people play. Ranged is generally always favored over Melee. Rogues share our token and gear and have proved tier over tier to perform- and in the popular '10 man aka Most Common' raid type you generally only have room for 1-2 Melee and *one* Agi Melee class at best. Why bring a hybrid when a pure DPS spec will generally always outperform them? What Tank/ other DPS wants to share gear?

    Feral just tends to get overshadowed by classes that share our gear (Bear, Rogue, Monks x2) and popular stable classes that share our token (Mage,DK,Rouge, Druid) so its just hard to fit one in a 10man setting. Most guilds would rather have a good healing tree than a great kitty. You have 4 very popular classes all grabbing at the same token, two of which are pure DPS classes which are 'required' for a raid roster/mechanics most of the time. The DK is the 2nd most popular/useful Tank this expac as well-another hard pill for druid to swallow-let alone a Feral.

  15. #15
    Well when you have three other specs that all play a lot better it's no wonder.

    Two at least. I get bored shitless on my bear.

    Quote Originally Posted by dashflash890 View Post
    Everybody wants "FACEROLL LITTLE EFFORT MAX DPS" classes now and mostly range.
    If by that you mean, a smooth rotation that doesn't feel like it hasn't been looked at since 2004.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by FeralSynapse View Post
    The PVE playstyle has changed little since Cata (In my opinion) but pkm brings up a good point here. There are a *lot* of PVP Ferals- which I think skews the numbers overall (at least this season). I know quiet a few druids (2300+) that pvp as feral but would never clear PVE content with the spec-they'd rather be resto or boomkin.
    Because instaclone basically. Which Blizzard is FINALLY killing next patch.
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  16. #16
    To be fair there's more sides to this discussion:

    The biggest factor is the overall feral population: feral druids and druids in general are appealing because of the shifting mechanic and the ability to play a large repertoire of roles on one character while keeping the in-touch-with-nature theme alive. What this also causes is that there's a lesser amount of spells/abilities dedicated to each specific spec. There's only 5-6 impactful bear moves, 7 cat ones and about 5 for moonkins (bar for cooldown management and pvp movement/utility).

    This brings me to the second point: poor class design. I've recently started playing a mage and I was baffled of the aircraft carrier-esque arsenal of (useful) spells and abilities but what stood out the most is that once you look at your specialization and skills and perhaps a quick gearing guide - it becomes OBVIOUS what is a dps increase and a dps decrease. This is not the case with ferals where savage roar uptime and rake/rip/thrash (hello, thrash!) management are of much higher important than say mangle/shred/ferocious bite and berserk management (which is what ferals do while leveling up).

    And probably the side which has the biggest influence but probably the lowest impact overall: raid utility. With our different plethora of out-of-cat form cooldowns (rebirth, tranquility, soothe, hibernate) and the dependence of one cooldown to HotW which is isn't our highest dps talent (5.1 - 5.3, at the time of authoring this post) makes a couple though chocies for ferals. Either you raid 10man HC as HotW so your raid leader can call on that big tranq once every blue moon or you raid DoC/SoTF in a 25man HC guild. That's pretty much all the variety I'm seeing and there's not a lot to go by here. The comparison to FOTM mage performance or warlock utility from healthstones, warlock portals, summoning portals, CC, AOE, pet tanking we just aren't known to contribute all that much (especially since Symbiosis can be severely gimped in 10man depending on your setup). If there was a ladder for raid utility (mind you heroic raid utility, stuff that actually gets relied upon, not just used for convenience), ferals would probably be somewhere low-mid.

    Thus, pairing up low overall/local representation with limited raid utility you get a reasonably well-performing lunchbox if you manage to get lucky on gear drops. As an added note, I definitely see no reason to gear up a low-ilvl druid to replace a different class who is retiring/leaving so you would pretty much have to get comfy in a guild prior to raid tier start so that you can get rolling. I believe this isn't talked about so much but the difference between a well-played, well-geared feral and a low-geared average feral are much more significant than any other class and is most likely a factor in mid-tier recruitment.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Jeire View Post
    I don't care about the numbers atm, its the lack of attention the spec often gets. What do you think?
    While your honesty is refreshing, this attitude is more one of "I'm not getting enough attention" than a valid game balance argument.

    FYI, there will always always always always always always be a lowest played spec.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Magpai View Post
    While your honesty is refreshing, this attitude is more one of "I'm not getting enough attention" than a valid game balance argument.

    FYI, there will always always always always always always be a lowest played spec.
    But it's important whether "lowest played" is 3% vs 15% or 8% vs 9%. It also makes a difference whether it is the lowest spec because it has bad initial design and is thus less represented (ie. look at the vanilla state vs. the feral boom in TBC compared to mages/rogues) which further diminishes its exposure to problems and changes or if the class is generally ok but bland/boring/hard to play (ie. disc priests).

  19. #19
    The Lightbringer Elunedra's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aseyhe View Post
    Don't like that they have to get Rune of Re-Origination or they're gimped for the rest of the expansion
    my guild is a 25 man guilds, and funny enoguh have 1 feral. and 1 gardian\feral (me), we also get 2 ret pallies

    but it does bother both me and the other ferals that we never had RoR drop for us, this will make us look bad in 5.4
    TREE DURID IS 4 PEE

  20. #20
    Feral is fine. The biggest issue is that melee spots are very limited especially in 10 man. You are nearly always better off by taking a Moonkin instead of a Feral so people switch over. Same issue for Enhancement btw.

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