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A Look at the Warrior vs Paladin Duel

Patch 5.3 Dev Interview
Today we are taking a look at an interview over on Icy Veins with the WoW dev team.

Death Knight
  • Blood has some raid utility with Raise Ally, Death Grip, Blood Worms, and Anti-Magic Zone (which will be buffed in 5.4). Other than the AMZ change, there aren't any plans for improving their raid utility at this time.
  • They are the second most popular tanks, after Prot Paladins.

  • Resto Druids got some small buffs in Patch 5.3, but HoTs were a healing cushion in the past, and they have now been replaced somewhat by absorbs. Patch 5.3 also nerfed Discipline Priests and Holy Paladins, but absorbs are still likely too potent.
  • Patch 5.4 will emphasize HoT spells even more, especially for AoE healing in raids.

  • Silencing Shot feels mandatory for Hunters, but giving it to all hunters would just let them choose another CC talent from that tier.
  • Aspect of the Iron Hawk is the strongest talent in that tier, but a passive talent. This goes against the idea that passive talents should be slightly worse than active talents, because active talents require attention and skill to use.
  • Blink Strikes may also be too good compared to other talents in that tier, as it is also a passive talent.
  • Hunters bring somewhat less raid utility compared to other classes, but they have good representation in raiding and are universal buffers.

  • Mages bring somewhat less raid utility compared to other classes, but they have good representation in raiding and many tools to escape fatal damage.
  • The Level 90 talent tier for Mages is too heavily tied to mana management overall, but the solution may be too large of a change for Patch 5.4.

  • Tanks are reluctant to use Avert Harm because it can result in death, but Brewmaster already has a lot of raid utility so it may just be removed in the future.
  • In the future, Windwalker may see healing become less of a personal DPS loss or Tigereye Brew benefit healing.

  • There are no plans to nerf Solace and Insanity, but a buff for the other two talents in that tier is possible.

  • We are unlikely to see a set bonus that lowers the GCD often, but this tier it was an experiment. There were server lag problems during this tier that made it hard to tell how well it worked this time.

  • Enhancement could see shorter ramp up times for AoE damage in the future.
  • The Patch 5.4 tier set bonus will increase both single target and AoE damage.
  • Resto is a little less attractive in 10 player raids due to weaker healing when players are not grouped up or movement is required. Totemic Restoration may be replaced in Patch 5.4, which could provide an opportunity to address range issues.
  • One Elemental change being considered is making Flame Shock tick crits cause Lava Surge instead of just a chance on a tick.

  • Warlocks do great damage in most situations, mitigate a lot of damage, and provide a lot of utility, making them almost too attractive in raids. Damage mitigation may be the thing to be nerfed, but we will know more when Patch 5.4 hits the PTR.

Class Balance
  • Patch 5.4 will make another pass of talents that are unappealing or mandatory to move back towards having a choice on each tier.
  • Melee and ranged play styles were balanced fairly well this tier, with melee being good on some fights and ranged being good on others.
  • Melee used to be far better than ranged at doing damage while moving, but that has changed over time. Rather then going back to making ranged stand still while doing damage, the devs are looking at giving melee another niche that they can be good at.
  • There aren't any classes that are excluded from Heroic raiding due to a lack of utility. Underrepresented specs usually have another spec that plays similarly that is doing fine.
  • Healer representation is much better in 25 player raids compared to 10 player raids.

Tri Spec
  • When testing tri spec during the 5.3 PTR, the developers realized that it was mostly useful to avoid having to set up action bars again after changing specs.
  • Before adding tri spec, the developers want to be absolutely sure the game needs it, as it is very difficult to go back on that kind of decision. Currently the better solution is adding a system for saving action bars and having players visit their class trainer to change to a third spec.
  • If the Mists of Pandaria talent system had been in place before dual spec, it is possible that dual spec would have not been added. Instead, a system for remembering action bar setups may have done the job.
  • Adding a fourth spec would be very expensive in terms of the amount of learning that players would have to do. Both learning an entirely new spec for their class, as well as learning about every other classes new spec. It would also involve adding new spells, set bonuses, and a lot of changes to these new spells as they were iterated on to be tweaked just right.

Brawler's Guild
  • The Brawler's Guild was about as popular as expected, considering invites are throttled and that there is no power gain to be had from participating.
  • Players that aren't able to defeat all of the bosses can keep coming back as their gear improves to progress further.

Blue Tweets
Originally Posted by Blizzard Entertainment
Character / Items
Have you got any ideas on return to fixed ICD stuff or at least adding some active trinkets back? More degrees of freedom.
We kind of prefer RPPM overall. Actives tend to just get macro'd into CDs. ICDs end up feeling passive esp. with low ICDs. (Source)
RPPMs on the other hand can sometimes give you many procs in a row, which is exciting and lets smart players capitalize on them. (Source)

Are heirlooms no longer being supported for purchase through Argent Tournament? I see updates for JP, HP, and DMF but not AT.
We thought it was weird to get high level heirlooms from lower level content that you can do at lower level. (Source)

any plans on bringing points back to points back to Talents for leveling? Maybe taking two talents per tier by points?
We'd like some tangible reward for gaining a level, but it can't be 90 new spells to clutter your action bar. (Source)

As a warrior, I really miss ArP(armor penetration). Any chance we will ever see it back?
Doubtful. Can you explain why you found it fun other than just RAWR DAMAGE? (Source)
ArP scaled in an interesting way with most of your abilities. The current system is boring and RAWR damage.
Not sure how it was that interesting. Just got better the more you had. (Source)

Horrible response GC. So punish the people who have figured out what to do with your game for 8+ years?
If you have 1 character and I have 5, then either you won't have enough to do or I will have too much. (Source)
Unless we make 1 and 5 characters require the same time investment, which means when you're done with 1 you have little to do. (Source)
Instead we try to make 2-5 take less time than the first, but still more time than if you only had 1 character. (Source)

Forget trispec, just make ActionBarSaver like function to default UI. I'd be more willing to pvp if I could reconfig for it
We think there is a lot of sense in something like this. (Source)

Here is an interesting read from Korea about how separate lockouts affected them
We have seen this story of course, but I think you are overestimating the role separate lockouts had to play. (Source)
The dual lock out was attempting to support existing Asian play styles, not drive them. (Source)

Our 10M guild is one of these having major issues. Down Jinrohk easy. Been on Horridon for at least 8 wks.
We think in retrospect that Horridon had a lot going on for a second boss. We'd prefer a smoother difficulty curve. (Source)
Trekkie said it last night in Legendary. Normals are too difficult (when an entire heroic diff level exists).
We don't agree. If N is too easy, those guilds plow through N and then get stuck on the much harder H bosses. (Source)
The key, which is hard, is that everyone should always have a new boss to look forward to. (Source)

easy does not equal compelling, and will not guarantee more people doing at. Especially not for long.
Totally. *Progression* is fun. Too hard or finished too quickly both yield a lack of progression. (Source)

The theme of this xpac for 10N is roadblocks without detours. which cannot happen with faster supply of content.
We felt the first tier was fine in 10 overall. Dogs, Elegon and Garalon required some hotfixes. ToT was a little too hard on 10. (Source)
It's tough because our stated goal is to make 10 and 25 equal difficulty since they provide same ilevel. (Source)
But the majority of 25 guilds are heroic guilds. That means 25s overall tend to be more skilled than 10s. (Source)
So even if the difficulty is the same, 10s end up feeling harder to their actual audiences. (Source)
Yet nerfing 10s adds to the pressure of having 25s just give up and run 10s since effort per reward is easier. (Source)
Tough problem to solve, which is why I sometimes opine if the ICC model of lower ilevel for 10s worked better. (Source)

I figure internal studies corroborate this -- and not unlike the government of California, you're caving to unfounded whining.
Not sure I'm following you. I think 25s are more fun and probably better for the game. But. (Source)
So many players play 10 that we risk huge backlash by forcing them to change. (Source)
We'll risk backlash when we think it's the right call for the game. Not sure that changing the 10 v 25 model is a clear win. (Source)

Have you noticed if the intro of the Thunderforge system has had an impact on 25s raiding at all? (increase/decrease/no diff)
Hard to say. 25s are rarely created so it's more a question of how many didn't break up that might have. (Source)
~ I know the higher drop in 25s was a bonus for them, but not sure it was intended to increase the numbers.
You're right. The bonus was more to send a signal to 25s that we still value them and aren't trying to phase them out. (Source)

So Ion admitted 10N is too hard in MoP - I feel like you don't need to wait to solve this problem...
He mentioned some fights in ToT were too hard on 10. They have been fixed for the most part. (Source)
Separately, he speculated that there is an audience that might use LFR level difficulty without random matchmaking. (Source)

Have you considered using stuns/silences/disarms to punish failures instead of damage? Less pressure to healers more to DPS.
We do that some; it just gets a little gimmicky if overused. At some point, dragon fire should just burn you. (Source)

Issue: "player cannot be kicked for another 15mins" is unhelpful with afkers in 5mans that only take ~15 minutes to complete.
You can then also kick a true noob or a guy in blue gear or a spec you don't like. (Source)
SWTOR got random groups correct. It is server based. Server based leads to accountability.
Realm based groups would have a very long queue time, especially on off-peak hours. How long are you willing to wait? (Source)

if you can kick and AFK or jerk whenever you want there's a real danger people might stop afking/being a jerk
Would love to see that. But it would also be easy to kick someone who made a talent selection you thought was noobish. (Source)

Maybe we should go back to creating our own groups and making friends, and then we can decide who we play with?
I've always played with large, active guilds and still had to wait for hours to get enough people to run a dungeon. (Source)
I can only imagine the situation is worse for smaller guilds or folks between guilds. (Source)
I get that the group might be more less likely to fall apart once formed, but is that worth the cost overall? Is it fun? (Source)

Do you also feel LFR/ LFD has caused a disconnect betwwen players to just chat creating relationships that transcend content?
We'd like to improve this and have some cool ideas. Stay tuned. (Source)
I hope its an additional raid difficulty for friend and family guilds. And not the removal of lfr/lfd.
We wouldn't remove LFD/R. When I ask about it, I'm trying to get a sense for what those players are really looking for. (Source)
Some want to force socialization. Others want to preserve the prestige of the harder content. (Source)
Both are noble goals, but we think kicking so many players out of raiding would have graver consequences. (Source)

LFR Healer queue. Healer carries dps into instance, then quits: group never gets healers, eternal Lei Shen queue loop.
If you group with a tank or healer who quits (just to get you a fast queue) you get dropped as well. #whyyoucan'thavenicethings (Source)

Why did u opt to have the ILvl difference between LFR and normal 20 for this tier of content instead of 13 like previously???
Couple reasons. Helps LFR feel less important to N raiders. Also keeps some prestige for N gear. (Source)
So pandering to the few again? is this not part of the issue with making select few feel more important
If challenging content doesn't feel rewarding, the risk is players focus on easier content and then get bored. (Source)

Have you guys considered a 10m LFR?
Our concern is that the smaller the raid, the higher the likelihood of getting a weak link. (Source)

The foundation of WoW has become more and more about loot above all else. Social interaction? LFR/low pop realms=no.
Agree that low pop realms are a problem. Disagree about LFR. While no doubt some players transitioned from friends to LFR... (Source)
Overall, those players just didn't participate before. They didn't have the social groups capable of raiding. (Source)

What are your feeling of the fact that LFR has become end game for many players?
Before LFR, getting max level was the end game for many players, and one can only level so many alts. (Source)

LFR means that Normal mode raids provide no unique content. Weakens incentive to gear up or socialize with guilds. A problem?
Potentially. Many players seem to have the attitude that LFR steals players from normal. But. (Source)
Seen/talked to many skilled players that are in my shoes, all were grateful for LFR, wouldn't get to see the content otherwise
Is it the difficulty or having a group that is the barrier? Some players are arguing it's just the former that's an issue. (Source)

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