Battle for Azeroth Beta Live

Class Development in Beta
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker)
Being in beta now, how locked in are certain aspects of BfA class design? Are you still looking at class design as a whole or just addressing bugs or things that don’t function well? In the Legion beta many issues for class design were flagged by players but for the most part went unchanged for whatever reasons Blizzard had. This led to many severe class overhauls mid expansion. Can we expect that again?
Hello!

I wouldn't call anything "locked" during testing and active development. Our development processes are as iterative as they've ever been, and we're always looking for places where we need to make further changes to meet design goals.

Having said that, we're close to finished with the changes to the rotations and the look and feel for most specs. We’ve still got a few changes coming soon in the Beta to Unholy Death Knights, Frost Death Knights, and Protection Warriors.

We used the Alpha timeframe to make some surgical changes to several other specs, and we're somewhat finished with that stage of development for this expansion.

In the days and weeks to come in the Beta, we're going to keep a focus on how every spec plays with regard to the new itemization systems in Battle for Azeroth. While it's certainly possible that feedback on how Azerite affects a certain spec could lead us to do further development on that spec's rotation, we don't expect to need any big changes to talents that would justify the words "severe" or "overhaul".

Beyond itemization concerns, there may be spots where we’ll do focused problem-solving around rotational issues (examples: “it turns out that simulations say never to use X, but X seems like it should be part of my core rotation” or “my spec is too feast-or-famine, and if I have bad luck with Y procs, I feel useless.”).

As always, thank you very much for testing the Beta and making your experiences testing inform your feedback. Focused feedback is super-helpful.

Patch 7.3.5 Hotfixes - April 24
Originally Posted by Blizzard (Blue Tracker / Official Forums)
Dungeons and Raids
  • Well of Eternity
    • Fixed a bug that caused Peroth’arn to appear too early and block further progress.
  • Antorus, The Broken Throne
    • Aggramar
      • Aggramar now begins Stage 3 at 35% health in Mythic difficulty
      • All Embers of Taeshalach now spawn with 0 Energy in Mythic difficulty.
      • The damage of Empowered Flame Rend has been reduced by 25%.
    • Argus, The Unmaker
      • Argus’s health has been reduced by 5% in Mythic difficulty.

Quests
  • Fixed a bug preventing Burnnhildar Prisoners from respawning as needed for “Cold Hearted”.

User Interface
  • The S.E.L.F.I.E. Camera should once again hide your UI when taking screenshots.
This article was originally published in forum thread: Class Development in Beta, April 24 Hotfixes - Mythic Antorus Nerfs started by chaud View original post
Comments 66 Comments
  1. Mafic's Avatar
    This is very concerning, because this implies that a lot of issues that classes and specs had during Legion may not be addressed for a while. Basically if a spec or class didn't receive a check at this point then who knows when a pass will come around.

    Also, this shows that class design is going to be for the most part stuck in legion prepatch state before Azertie armor is factored in. That design paradigm pushes all the power on the backend where with the artifact you received some of the power right away as soon as you gained the weapon (eg artifact talent and a few traits).

    This is a massive gamble by Blizzard to put class design on the back burner and hope Azerite armor is enough of a pull for players to stick around for many months.
  1. Villager720's Avatar
    Well. I can’t say I wasn’t hoping for more.
    Let’s hope they can at least reverse the GCD changes.
  1. Firefall's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Mafic View Post
    This is a massive gamble by Blizzard to put class design on the back burner and hope Azerite armor is enough of a pull for players to stick around for many months.
    Especially because we've seen most of that armor now so unless the raid stuff is somehow transformative it's less impactful than tier sets (removed), legiondaries (removed), and artifacts (removed) so we are going to have completely hollow classes.

    Heck, let's face it, it's three traits tops. Even if they are all amazing, most classes have broken designs now. They dropped the ball with class design. World content is looking good. Raids seem like they will be good. Hopefully that makes the game worth playing. Otherwise we are looking at another WoD and can look forward to them fixing it in 9.0 or maybe a 8.1 or 8.2 if we're lucky.
  1. Mafic's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Firefall View Post
    Especially because we've seen most of that armor now so unless the raid stuff is somehow transformative it's less impactful than tier sets (removed), legiondaries (removed), and artifacts (removed) so we are going to have completely hollow classes.

    Heck, let's face it, it's three traits tops. Even if they are all amazing, most classes have broken designs now. They dropped the ball with class design. World content is looking good. Raids seem like they will be good. Hopefully that makes the game worth playing.
    From what I have discussed with someone else there will be powerful azerite pieces. But will players be willing to put in the time to finally have classes not feel so empty?

    Blizz since WoD has shifted their business strategy from building/maintaining subs to transactions through their store for services and merchandise along with focusing on box sales. This is why in Legion they had the artifact weapon as the pull feature for players to buy the box for Legion. Legendaries and set bonuses were just another layer for players to keep playing.

    But BFA doesn't have a feature to pull players in like artifact weapons. Coupled with very conservative class design which is really pruning 3.0 it seems to be assuming players are going to buy into the Azerite armor down the road. But most people don't buy an expansion to WoW for what reward they gain 4-6 months down the road IMVHO.
  1. Mokoshne's Avatar
    Bit concerning they dont mention balance druids on the list of classes with changes upcoming. I wonder if they're happy with how it is atm
  1. Clozer's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Mafic View Post
    From what I have discussed with someone else there will be powerful azerite pieces. But will players be willing to put in the time to finally have classes not feel so empty?

    Blizz since WoD has shifted their business strategy from building/maintaining subs to transactions through their store for services and merchandise along with focusing on box sales. This is why in Legion they had the artifact weapon as the pull feature for players to buy the box for Legion. Legendaries and set bonuses were just another layer for player to keep playing.

    But BFA doesn't have a feature to pull players in like artifact weapons. Coupled with very conservative class design which is really pruning 3.0 it seems to be assuming players are going to buy into the Azerite armor down the road. But most people don't buy an expansion to WoW for what reward they gain 4-6 months down the road IMVHO.
    90% of tier sets are some passive bonuses that dont affect gameplay at all(just like weapon traits). "Necessary" legendaries that improve/change gameplay in a good way are to some degree talents now. I don't really feel like gameplay will be worse than it is right now. I'll the miss the legendaries that brought changes but on the other hand i'm welcoming the new talents to most classes.
  1. Mafic's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Clozer View Post
    90% of tier sets are some passive bonuses that dont affect gameplay at all(just like weapon traits). "Necessary" legendaries that improve/change gameplay in a good way are to some degree talents now. I don't really feel like gameplay will be worse than it is right now. I'll the miss the legendaries that brought changes but on the other hand i'm welcoming the new talents to most classes.
    There is no new talents. The new talents are displacing existing talents which implies the number of talents available will stay the same since WoD heading into BFA. They justified this in Legion because the Artifact weapon was basically the old talent system with gold traits being like additional talents to a specific spec. However, BFA does not have anything like this and having classes stuck in a Legion prepatch state heading into an expansion is counter to what a MMORPG should be about.

    Most games that stop giving talents and abilities out don't increase the level cap. Most of the abilities WoW characters gain stop by 90 and by 100 you are not gaining any new talents. There literally is no reason for leveling ten levels anymore due to level scaling.
  1. Railander's Avatar
    In the Legion beta many issues for class design were flagged by players but for the most part went unchanged for whatever reasons Blizzard had. Can we expect that again?
    Our development processes are as iterative as they've ever been
    i'm assuming that's a big yes, expect it to be just as bad as in previous expansions.

    we're close to finished with the changes to the rotations and the look and feel for most specs
    lo and behold.
  1. Mafic's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Railander View Post
    "In the Legion beta many issues for class design were flagged by players but for the most part went unchanged for whatever reasons Blizzard had. Can we expect that again?"

    "Our development processes are as iterative as they've ever been"

    i'm assuming that's a big yes, expect it to be just as bad as in previous expansions.

    "we're close to finished with the changes to the rotations and the look and feel for most specs"

    lo and behold.
    It is only alpha!

    It is unfortunate to see that BFA is going to be dragged down by class design.
  1. Niwes's Avatar
    Hell, this do not sound well. Not good.

    When they even stop doing false promises this time (like they normally do), and this so soon, at the start of the beta, then you can be sure, for them things are 99% finalized and even less stuff will change than in Legion alpha. Or in short: What you see now class wise, will go life nearly unchanged.

    This is really fucked up stuff.
  1. Rogalicus's Avatar
    My condolences to shadow priests that still play that game.
  1. YouWillAllAnswerToSithis's Avatar
    Hopefully they're SURE things will look good before launch, otherwise we'll being seeing other specializations in the place that Feral was in.
  1. zito's Avatar
    This is definitely the next wod expansion
  1. Zephn's Avatar
    Hopefully all the people that just got into the beta (me included apparently) will voice their concern with problem specs, if there are enough positive posts complaining about it then some key things may still be changed (class design wise anyway)
  1. digichi's Avatar
    I would have loved to play a good version of boomkin for a lil while longer. There are a lot of game changing legiondaries that bring fun to the spec and make it fun to play, and without them a gaping hole in rotation is really noticeable.
  1. Wildpantz's Avatar
    Was hoping for azerite armor but even that wont fix some specs. Thankfully i plan to go vengeance which is fine
  1. Kyanion's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Mokoshne View Post
    Bit concerning they dont mention balance druids on the list of classes with changes upcoming. I wonder if they're happy with how it is atm
    Lord I hope not, I don't know about other specs/classes but man our rotation feels flat and we still have a truckload of dead talents.
  1. ro9ue's Avatar
    Yikes, not good. Warrior dps specs and others like Survival are still in bad shape imo.
  1. Haidaes's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Mokoshne View Post
    Bit concerning they dont mention balance druids on the list of classes with changes upcoming. I wonder if they're happy with how it is atm
    They gave you new moon back... they just put it in the tier with talents that you already wanted to take anyway, resulting in a +/- 0. They did that for many/most classes that were lucky enough to actually get their stuff back, like fire mages for example who have the phoenix in the tier where they already had hot-streak generators, now they just have to decide between proper single target rotation or AoE..

    On one hand I'm glad that DK isn't done yet, but I have very little faith that what they will do to the DK dps specs is something that I woudl agree with. I actually just see them taking out some of the useless shit talents for frost and unholy and add the artifact abilities in somewhere where they won't be picked anyway.

    Overall the whole theme of the classes is less of everything. The only way to fix most of that would be if every other azerite piece came with "soul of the x" type traits for the rest of the expansion. And frankly relying on a crutch like that, especially if potentially raid only, to fix class design.. I don't know, sounds fun, right? Right?!
  1. Bormec's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by Zephn View Post
    Hopefully all the people that just got into the beta (me included apparently) will voice their concern with problem specs, if there are enough positive posts complaining about it then some key things may still be changed (class design wise anyway)
    Retribution paladins wrote and wrote and wrote all throughout Legion alpha and beta that the design of Greater Blessing of Might was broken and caused a DPS loss for the paladin whenever the recipient died, that the ability Retribution was stupidly overpowered on progression fights, and that nobody in their right minds were taking Holy Wrath as a talent.

    All three of these things made it well into Legion before one of them was removed and openly apologized for as a stupid idea, another rightfully nerfed, and the other replaced in Battle for Azeroth because the guy that invented it no longer worked on World of Warcraft.

    But go ahead and tell yourselves posting on message boards will matter over the development timetable that’s already been set.

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