1. #1

    latest ptr changes question

    Beast Mastery
    Kill Command Give the command to kill, causing your pet to savagely deal [ 50% of Attack Power + 60% of Ranged Attack Power + 1.14% of Spell Power [ 112% of Attack Power + 2.13% of Spell Power * (0.94) ;] Physical damage to the enemy. Hunter - Beast Mastery Spec. Hunter - Beast Mastery Spec. 30 Focus. 50 yd range. Instant. 7.5 sec cooldown.

    Beast Mastery & Marksmanship
    Barrage Rapidly fires a spray of shots for 3 sec, dealing an average of [ 234.2% [ 156.2% of Attack Power ] Physical damage to all enemies in front of you. Usable while moving. Requires Ranged Weapon. Beast Mastery/Marksmanship Hunter - Level 90 Talent. Beast Mastery/Marksmanship Hunter - Level 90 Talent. 60 Focus. 40 yd range. 3 sec cast (Channeled). 20 sec cooldown.


    is the kill command change a nerf or buff or tooltip change?
    The Barrage change is just a straight nerf to it.

  2. #2
    I didn't think Barrage is too strong and needed a nerf tbh.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by FLANOFETT View Post

    is the kill command change a nerf or buff or tooltip change?
    The Barrage change is just a straight nerf to it.
    I would assume the KC change is a tooltip change. I don't think there is a reason for blizzard to change KC at this point.
    Interestingly Wowhead is stating some different numbers, which basically come down to: (112% of Attack Power * 1.06).

    The barrage change is simply barrage changing back to it's current live version. It was buffed in a previous version.

    All in all you shouldn't read too much into it; blizzard explained in the past that they sometimes push a patch when one of the developers is experimenting with something. The barrage change could just be such a thing: checking out how barrage feels with 50% more damage and deciding to go back on that, but with a patch being pushed in between the changes.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Chaosweaver View Post
    I didn't think Barrage is too strong and needed a nerf tbh.
    On live, no it isn't. Despite popular believe, barrage on live isn't super crappy though. It's just quite niche (burst AoE dps) that often gets overshadowed by e.g. Stomp as that is worth more dps over a longer time.

    On PTR it was pretty strong though. Strong enough that it would show up in single target rotation again.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Nythiz View Post
    On live, no it isn't. Despite popular believe, barrage on live isn't super crappy though. It's just quite niche (burst AoE dps) that often gets overshadowed by e.g. Stomp as that is worth more dps over a longer time.

    On PTR it was pretty strong though. Strong enough that it would show up in single target rotation again.
    It's already strong enough to show up in ST rotation on live.
    And it's already strong enough to use it on a fight like Zekvoz even when you just have 2 sets of adds. If people would play Zul properly it would also be an absolute monster there. Barrage on a fight like Ghuun is doing about as much damage as Beast Cleave - and it's kinda crazy having a talent that doubles you AoE capacities.

    With BoD not at all looking like a huge ST raid Barrage could or rather would have quickly become the go-to choice for pretty much every single boss in there by default.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Gasparde View Post
    It's already strong enough to show up in ST rotation on live.
    And it's already strong enough to use it on a fight like Zekvoz even when you just have 2 sets of adds. If people would play Zul properly it would also be an absolute monster there. Barrage on a fight like Ghuun is doing about as much damage as Beast Cleave - and it's kinda crazy having a talent that doubles you AoE capacities.

    With BoD not at all looking like a huge ST raid Barrage could or rather would have quickly become the go-to choice for pretty much every single boss in there by default.
    Barrage on Ghuun is for padding your parse, a pretty major flaw in the way the log rankings work. The only damage that matters on Ghuun is single target. Similarly, the adds on Zek/Zul don't really matter either. Fetid and Vectis are the only fights where adds matter and barrage is garbage on both of those fights.

    It needs a buff to come up to stomps output and even then stomp is passive. Little sad there is basically 1 build for BM and the only trait that would slightly change that, Pack Alpha, is being removed. Maybe one day they will take a look at BM talents, right after shaman get that rework they were promised I'm sure.

    The Kill Command change is a slight buff, like 1% or something meaningless according to some folks on the discord.

  6. #6
    Any idea how strong Azerite Trait that replaces Pack Alpha is?
    Danwo

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Danwo View Post
    Any idea how strong Azerite Trait that replaces Pack Alpha is?
    Good question that will likely be answered on the 11th or 12th when Az updates his guide. I haven't seen any sims out for the 8.1 trait changes yet and the discord has been mostly ignoring the question every time I look at it, which isn't often these days.

    It will probably not surpass PI and be a middle of the pack 2nd choice. With the extra ring change and lack of a Reorigination Array like buff in Dazar'Alor you will probably be focusing on getting 3x PI and who cares about the rest which is easy to do with 5/9 pieces having it. Yes every boss has a piece of azerite gear.

  8. #8
    I just compared the ability tooltips between PTR and Live using exactly the same gear on both. The damage of all abilities has stayed the same except for the two that were changed on the PTR recently (Kill Command and Barrage), that seems like a little too perfect to be a coincidence. The damage of both those abilities dropped quite significantly on the PTR compared to Live:
    • Kill Command dropped from 9916 (Live) to 8527 (PTR), a 14.0% reduction in damage.
    • Barrage dropped from 16610 (Live) to 11077 (PTR), a 33.3% reduction in damage.

    I actually checked the same thing a few days ago, and again just now after the PTR updated, and the numbers haven't changed since then. I wonder if this is a bug or intentional :/. I don't think we'll see a balance pass until the Battle of Dazar'alor comes out, so if BM's damage has been nerfed excessively, I doubt it'll get fixed until a couple of months time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Danwo View Post
    Any idea how strong Azerite Trait that replaces Pack Alpha is?
    The new trait increases the damage of Kill Command, which is single target, and summons a Dire Beast which is also single target, so its niche is definitely in single target. If it's balanced correctly it should do well in single target but then pretty badly in AoE. Then again, it's basically the same as Serrated Jaws, and that trait is currently terrible in single target and one of the worst traits in the game for AoE.

  9. #9
    Don't go off the damage on the tooltips. This caused some confusion on Hunter discord when the PTR notes released. If you do actual dummy testing you'll realize that KC damage actually went up about 4.5% regardless of what the tooltip states.

    Here were the numbers I had immediately after copying my character to PTR:

    PTR
    7,099
    14,199

    Live
    6,794
    13,587

  10. #10
    Hmm yes, I had noticed that the damage on the tooltips have had some inconsistencies for a while (I noted them three months ago in this thread). I assumed that a relative change in the tooltips would have some meaning even if the numbers themselves were meaningless, but I guess the inconsistencies might have arisen due to the developers simply not updating the tooltips after making changes to the abilities (and thus even a relative change in the tooltip would be meaningless).

    Here are my target dummy results:

    Damage done on dummy

    Live
    Kill Command: 6018
    Barrage: 11 hits of 1057 totalling 11627
    Cobra Shot: 2739
    Chimaera Shot: 5610
    Multishot: 543
    Stomp: 2022
    Barbed Shot: 4 hits of 528 totalling 2112
    Murder of Crows: 16 hits of 1549 totalling 24784

    PTR
    Kill Command: 5970
    Barrage: 16 hits of 705 totalling 11280
    Cobra Shot: 2739
    Chimaera Shot: 5610
    Multishot: 543
    Stomp: 2022
    Barbed Shot: 4 hits of 528 totalling 2112
    Murder of Crows: 16 hits of 1549 totalling 24784
    The interesting thing with Barrage is that the damage of each individual hit decreased by exactly the amount that the tooltip damage decreased by (33.3% reduction), however, the amount of times that Barrage hits increased from 11 times (Live) to 16 times (PTR), which almost exactly balances out the reduction in damage, such that the total damage remains almost the same (although it was still a slight nerf for me).

    It's also interesting that you saw a slight buff for both abilities on the PTR, whereas I saw a slight nerf to both abilities on the PTR. I wonder if this is perhaps due to differences in our equipment: in my case, my weapon is a significantly higher ilvl than the rest of my gear (weapon ilvl is 390, while my average ilvl is 379). Or perhaps on the PTR a Monk had attacked the dummy you were using, applying the 5% increased physical damage buff, in which case the 4.5% damage increase you saw (less than the 5%) would actually imply you experienced a slight nerf.

    I'm just going to include the values that were on my tooltips at the time of these dummy tests for potential future reference:
    Damage listed on the tooltips

    Live
    Kill Command: 9916
    Barrage: 16610
    Cobra Shot: 3913
    Chimaera Shot: 5610
    Multishot: 777
    Stomp: 3826
    Barbed Shot: 3020
    Murder of Crows: 35424

    PTR
    Kill Command: 8527
    Barrage: 11077
    Cobra Shot: 3913
    Chimaera Shot: 5610
    Multishot: 777
    Stomp: 3826
    Barbed Shot: 3020
    Murder of Crows: 35424
    Notable in these tooltip vs dummy damage comparisons is that damage done by our character specifically (such as Cobra Shot, Multishot, Chimaera Shot, Barrage and Murder of Crows) experience exactly the same 30% physical damage reduction, while the damage done by the pet specifically (Kill Command and Stomp) are completely inconsistent with the tooltips, which is what I found in the thread that I linked at the start of this post.

    Barrage on the PTR is the exception to this rule, where the damage dealt is not 70% of the tooltip, however I think this is due to the tooltip not correctly accounting for the fact that the number of times Barrage shoots has increased to 16 from 11. When we account for this, the physical damage reduction becomes exactly 30%:
    - On the PTR, Barrage tooltip says 11077 but deals 11280 damage on a dummy.
    - To "correct" the tooltip we increase the value by 16/11 so it becomes 11077*16/11 = 16112.
    - Now the Barrage tooltip would read 16112, and it deals 11280 damage, which is a 30.0% reduction from the tooltip.
    Last edited by Turtel; 2018-12-08 at 12:15 AM.

  11. #11
    My assumption would be that since the versatility side of the ability has been re-worked slightly according to wowhead's tooltip, and it looks like you've unequipped all gear, that might be why you're seeing a decrease where i saw an increase. I simply only uneqipped trinkets and made sure i had nothing that would proc extra stats, waited until my archive had stacked up to 20 for both tests, and then tested. That means I probably had more versatility than you during the test.

    Also, my numbers do not include Barrage, that is simply KC crit and non-crit numbers from both PTR and Live. Barrage was quite clearly a nerf and not an ability used on every fight either way, so I was far less interested in checking it.

    Edit: On second thought, it might just be that more agility AND versatility simply scales it better now as well. Just looking at the difference in numbers it's clear I'm higher overall in stats than what you're using.
    Last edited by Mavick; 2018-12-08 at 12:29 AM.

  12. #12
    I kept all of my gear equipped, including my trinkets, and used no buffs or cooldowns; if I had a proc that increased the damage of abilities, I discarded those values. I suspect the reason your Kill Command did more damage than mine might be that you have more agility/versatility/mastery than my gear, whereas I might have more haste/crit (crit is by far my highest stat) and less agility (due to lower ilvl) and none of my azerite traits gave a passive boost to Kill Command damage (i.e. no Archive of the Titans).

    I think the formulae that get datamined by Wowhead and MMO Champion actually show the values of the ingame tooltips rather than showing the actual damage. This is based on my findings regarding the Barrage tooltips/dummy damage.

    The MMO Champion datamining gave the Barrage formula as:
    Live: [ 234.2% of Attack Power ]
    PTR: [ 156.2% of Attack Power ]

    And Wowhead has:
    Live: [(21.294% of Attack power)% * 11] (simplifying to 234.2% of Attack Power)
    PTR: [(14.196% of Attack power)% * 11] (simplifying to 156.2% of Attack Power)
    Note that I corrected the *10 currently displayed on Live Wowhead to *11, because Barrage hits 11 times on Live (from my testing).

    In other words, both the MMO Champion and Wowhead formulas agree that there is a 33.3% damage reduction going from Live to PTR, which is exactly how much the Barrage ingame tooltip reduced by going from Live to PTR. The actual dummy damage of each hit also did reduce by 33.3%, but the number of times Barrage dealt damage increased to 16 times on the PTR, compared to only 11 times on Live. This was not correctly accounted for in the Barrage ingame tooltip nor was it correctly accounted for in the Wowhead datamining nor the MMO Champion datamining, so I suspect that the datamining produced these erroneous results because the ingame tooltip was erroneous, suggesting that the datamined formulae actually show the tooltip values rather than the true damage values.

    If we correct the Wowhead formula to show the 16 times that Barrage actually shoots on the PTR (instead of 11) we get:
    PTR (incorrect): [(14.196% of Attack power)% * 11] (simplifying to 156.2% of Attack Power)
    PTR (corrected): [(14.196% of Attack power)% * 16] (simplifying to 227.1% of Attack Power)

    Under this corrected formula, the total damage dealt by Barrage changes from 234.2% (Live) to 227.1% (PTR), which is only a 3% nerf (instead of the 33.3% shown in the ingame tooltip and datamined formulae), and this is exactly how much the dummy damage of Barrage has changed by: on Live Barrage did 11680 damage whereas on the PTR Barrage did 11280 damage, a 3% reduction (not 33.3%).
    Last edited by Turtel; 2018-12-08 at 01:53 AM.

  13. #13
    So, it's a nerf to barrage, which was already clear. I'm far more interested in how KC works out since it's a core component to our rotation on literally every fight.

    Probably important for me to also point out to you that my KC damage tooltip also went down on PTR as well, despite actually doing more damage. It's not outside the realm of possibility that the tooltips are simply not accurate. When has that ever happened in WoW, afterall....
    Last edited by Mavick; 2018-12-08 at 02:19 AM.

  14. #14
    I think the more important point to take from my analysis was that the datamined PTR formula for Barrage was wrong, and that the datamined formula probably just gave us the formula for the tooltip value, which was also wrong (and thus why the datamined formula was wrong). You concluded that Barrage was nerfed because the datamined number decreased from 234.2% to 156.2%, but all that showed was that the tooltip changed by that amount, and as it turned out the tooltip was wrong; it didn't account for the fact that Barrage now hits 16 times rather than 11 which could have easily ended up buffing the total damage of Barrage (despite the reduced tooltip damage) and we wouldn't have been able to know that just by looking at the datamined formula.

    The most confusing thing about this whole thing is that I think the tooltip value for Kill Command on the PTR is correct now (whereas it's incorrect on Live). The reason I believe this is because now the tooltip damage for Kill Command (on the PTR) experiences exactly the same 30% physical damage reduction as other abilities like Cobra Shot and Multishot: for me the tooltip for Kill Command says 8527 (on the PTR) and it deals 5970 on the dummy, which is exactly the 30% damage reduction we see with other abilities. On Live, the apparent physical damage reduction on Kill Command (damage on dummy versus damage on tooltip) is completely inconsistent, which suggests that the tooltip value is wrong.

    For Barrage it's the other way around: on Live, the tooltip damage of Barrage experiences exactly a 30% physical damage reduction once tested on the dummy, whereas on the PTR it does not. In fact on the PTR, the damage Barrage does on a dummy is actually higher than the damage shown on the tooltip, so the tooltip value is clearly wrong. This is corrected if we increase the tooltip damage by a factor of 16/11, as I showed in my earlier analysis.

    TLDR: The datamined formula for Kill Command on Live was wrong. The datamined formula for Barrage on the PTR was wrong. Thus there was no way for us to know if either of the abilities was actually buffed or nerfed just by looking at the datamined formulas; the only way of knowing was to actually check ingame.
    Last edited by Turtel; 2018-12-08 at 03:10 AM.

  15. #15
    Tbh, I think you're just entirely too caught up in tooltip values in a game that has been historically atrocious at having accurate ones.

  16. #16
    I collected some more damage data on Kill Command with varying gear levels, I also collected the tooltip values as I went along:


    The relative changes in Kill Command dummy damage going from Live to PTR were as follows:
    Fully Equipped + 2*Archive: -0.26%
    Fully equipped: -0.80%
    No Weapon: +6.24%
    Naked: +6.18%

    In both cases with a weapon equipped, Kill Command experienced a very slight nerf going from Live to PTR, with a smaller nerf experienced when I had more agility. Without a weapon equipped, Kill Command experienced quite a sizeable buff (6.2% buff), with a slightly bigger buff when I had more agility. From these results, I suspect that the devs might have reduced how well Kill Command scales with weapon damage, but have increased how well it scales with agility to compensate.

    Additionally, under all gear variations on the PTR, the dummy damage of Kill Command was exactly 70% of the tooltip damage, which further confirms the conclusion that the tooltip is now correct on the PTR, and that it's currently incorrect on Live (seeing as the damage reduction values are all over the place on Live).

    Quote Originally Posted by Mavick View Post
    Tbh, I think you're just entirely too caught up in tooltip values in a game that has been historically atrocious at having accurate ones.
    Looking at the tooltips provided some important insights. Almost all physical abilities I tested experienced exactly the same 30% reduction when attacking a dummy (as compared to the damage shown on the tooltips), while Chimaera Shot (which deals Frost/Nature damage) dealt exactly the damage on the tooltip. This means that it's likely that 30% is the armour reduction factor for physical abilities, and also that most of the tooltips are likely correct.

    Furthermore, the datamined formulas (Live vs PTR) for Barrage suggested that the damage had been reduced by 33.3% (the datamined number reduced from 234.2% to 156.2% Attack Power) and when going from Live vs PTR this is exactly the damage reduction found on the Barrage tooltip. However, when actually testing the damage of Barrage on the PTR, the damage did not decrease by 33.3% at all (it was only 3%). This suggests that datamined numbers likely only show changes to the tooltips, so any conclusions we make based on the datamined numbers only give us insight on the tooltips. This is useful when the tooltips actually give an accurate representation of the actual damage of the abilities (which they do most of the time as I found earlier), but if the tooltips are wrong then our conclusions will be meaningless. And as it turns out, both Kill Command and Barrage (the only two abilities that had datamined changes) had incorrect tooltips, so we couldn't have made any meaningful conclusions just by looking at the datamined values.

    It wouldn't have been possible to make these conclusions without looking at the tooltips. Perhaps you are not interested in any of this, but it is basically the entire point of the thread. If someone has gathered some relevant data and done some relevant analysis, then I would prefer if they were encouraged to share their findings rather than having it all dismissed as pointless.

    For me, part of the fun of World of Warcraft is getting to know the underlying game mechanics, and understanding their implications, even if none of it is likely to have any effect on gameplay (I'll probably be simming everything anyway). If there is any data that is inconsistent with what I assumed it should be, then I will try my best to find an explanation for the discrepancy. Ultimately I would like something like this webpage from Legion for BFA, if anyone knows of the existence of such a thing then I would appreciate if they would share it .

  17. #17
    So through all your lengthy math'ing and posts it seems like it's exactly what I pointed out: KC seems to scale better now off more stats in general. That's about the only worthwhile conclusion I can seem to draw from all your posts to explain why mine went up, despite tooltip going down (still not answered, btw) weapon or no weapon, while yours went down, with me being in better gear.

  18. #18
    Your Kill Command tooltip didn't experience the same relative change (compared to the change in its actual damage) because the Kill Command tooltip on Live is wrong and it has been corrected on the PTR (I gave my reasoning for these conclusions in post #14). I suspect that the Live Kill Command tooltip vastly overstates the benefit of weapon damage (which is why unequipping the weapon on Live results in such a massive drop in the tooltip damage, but not such a big drop in actual damage).

    Regarding why your Kill Command damage went up whereas mine went down going from Live to PTR, I gave two possible explanations:

    Explanation 1: Differences in our gear
    Seeing as you had unequipped both your trinkets, whereas I kept both mine on (and both give decent chunks of agility; 271 and 298 respectively), it doesn't seem likely that you would have that much more agility than I had, though you probably did still have more agility seeing how much damage your Kill Command did. Although even when I had both my trinkets equipped and 2 full stacks of Archive of the Titans, I still experienced a nerf in my Kill Command damage going from Live to PTR. Extrapolating/Interpolating based on my data, in order to get a 4.5% buff, you would have needed to have such a significantly weaker weapon than I was using, or such a massive amount more agility that it just doesn't seem plausible given the circumstance (you unequipped your trinkets).

    Of course I'm not going to rule anything out. In the interest of getting to the bottom of this: my weapon ilvl was 390 and the total agility I had when casting Kill Command was 5887.

    To me it also doesn't seem likely that the effect of Mastery/Versatility would have changed going from Live to PTR. For one, if they had, then the damage of other abilities would have changed as well, which they haven't (except for Barrage). And I know on Wowhead there seems to be an addendum to 'the versatility side' of the Kill Command formula on the PTR, but due to the commutativity of multiplication, this is no different to just simply changing the AP coefficient; in other words, a*(AP)*(1+Versatility)*b is the same as a*b*(AP)*(1+Versatility). In other words, it's not a buff to versatility, it's just a convoluted way to buff the overall damage of Kill Command: a buff to Versatility would look like a*(AP)*(1+b*Versatility).

    Explanation 2: A monk had attacked the dummy you were using on the PTR, causing it to take 5% more physical damage.
    It does seem awfully coincidental that you experienced a ~4.5% buff while I experienced a ~0.5% nerf, the difference being that you experienced a 5% damage buff relative to me. I also would have experienced a similar ~4.5% buff if a Monk had applied the 5% physical damage buff to the dummy I was using.

    I could somewhat convincingly rule this explanation out immediately if you had shared your PTR tooltip value for Kill Command, since from my findings on the PTR, Kill Command now always seems to do exactly 70% of the tooltip value regardless of what gear you're using. However, if a Monk has applied the 5% physical damage buff, then Kill Command would deal 73.5% of the tooltip rather than 70%.

    Side note
    Ultimately, whether Kill Command scales better/worse/differently on the PTR compared to Live is going to be pointless in a few days once 8.1 hits anyway since Live will no longer exist once that happens (it will be replaced by the PTR). I'm interested in these things, despite it all being ultimately pointless, because find it fun; particularly checking whether what I think to be the case actually matches with the data. If the data does match what I was suspecting, that doesn't mean that checking/collecting the data was pointless. In fact I have the most fun when several independant lines of evidence/data that all seem to confirm what I was already thinking, since that means that what I was thinking was likely correct.

  19. #19
    I realised I missed one important gear setup in the comparison I did in post #16, namely what happens to the Kill Command damage with just a weapon equipped.

    Here is the updated raw data table that includes this new gear setup (I also decided to include my exact agility levels, in case it might be useful for future reference):


    And here again are the relative changes in Kill Command damage going from Live to PTR (I bolded the new data):
    Fully Equipped + 2*Archive: -0.26%
    Fully equipped: -0.80%
    Fully Equipped + No Weapon: 6.24%
    Naked + Weapon: -16.75%
    Naked: 6.18%

    As you can see, Kill Command experienced a very sizeable nerf in damage (16.75% nerf) going from Live to the PTR when the weapon was the only thing equipped (AKA high weapon DPS + low agility). This is as opposed to being fully equipped but without a weapon (AKA low weapon DPS + high agility), in which I experienced a decent buff in damage (6.24% buff) going from Live to PTR. It was probably already clear from my earlier data set that weapon damage was being nerfed (with agility was being buffed to compensate), but this new data point shows that this is likely the case much more clearly.

    Curiously, the break even point for me where Kill Command is neither nerfed nor buffed (i.e. damage stays the same going from Live to PTR) appears to be when I have 2 full stacks of Archive of the Titans and a Flask + Food buff. I suspect that perhaps the developers had wanted to change Kill Command to become more consistent with the other abilities, making it purely based on Attack Power like how every other ability is, but do so without affecting how much damage it did (as much as possible anyway). This had the side effect of making weapon damage a large amount less effective, while slightly buffing the effect of agility (at least when it comes to Kill Command damage).
    Last edited by Turtel; Yesterday at 12:22 AM.

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