Warlock and Hunters Blue posts


News Feed Bot
Jul 16, 2009
Warlock and Hunters Blue posts
Quote from Blizzard staff
Balancing DPS Specs
It's very hard to come up with compelling niches for where a warlock would think "I really want to be Demo in this situation." But I'd argue the same thing exists between Affliction and Destro. Earlier in LK Affliction "won." Now things have shifted back to Destro.

Again, this is not a lock specific problem. For awhile Arcane felt like a better spec for high-movement fights, of which there were many. Now depending on who you talk to, Arcane just flat out "loses" to Fire. The suggestions players tend to make involve the constant tweaking of spell damage, coefficients or talents up or down until everything is within 1% (or whatever) again. I just don't know how realistic that is or if there's a better way to do it.

[...] That may be sufficient for you. That may be sufficient for a lot of players. But I don't think it would be sufficient overall. The question to ask yourself is at what point would you abandon the highest dps spec for your favorite dps spec? 10%? 5%? 1%? For a lot of players, they just want to know what the highest potential dps spec is and care less about the magnitude of the differential. You can just say those players are dumb and we shouldn't cater to them, but I can tell you a lot of players feel that way. (Source)

Hunter (3.1 Skills List / 3.1 Talent + Glyph Calc.)
Arcane Shot and Beast Mastery
Yeah that was my point. The solutions are:

1) Give BM a signature shot and try to give Arcane a situational use.
2) Buff Arcane so deep in BM that nobody else will get that talent.
3) Accept that BM needs to be buffed in ways other than shots.

There are good points and bad points to each tree having a signature shot. A bad point is that it makes e.g. set bonuses hard because you can't boost things like Explosive Shot easily. A good point is the trees feel a little more different rather than just swapping Explosive Shot for Raccoon Shot if you were BM. (Source)

Arcane Shot and Beast Mastery (#2)
What I read: "I am so eager to try and put down the devs that I don't like to think about what they said." This has been brought up in like 4 threads since the Q&A went live. If your main goal is to find ammo for how the devs don't understand your class, at least read the other threads first.

If we buff the holy heck out of Arcane, then every Survival hunter just shoots Arcane and won't take Explosive Shot. Since a lot of the Survival tree is designed to prop up Explosive Shot, we think this would a bad thing. Hence, we have to be very careful about how much we buff Arcane. If we do it in a very deep BM talent, then it's probably safe. If we do it baseline or through a glyph or an upper talent, then we might get into problems. By contrast, buffing Explosive or Chimera is pretty safe because no other hunter can ever use those shots. BM doesn't have a "this is BM only" attack to buff, unless it applies to the pet.

There is a similar discussion going on for DKs about at what point they can stop using Scourge Strike and just use Obliterate instead. That would be bad, because an Obliterate-based Unholy build is a lot less fun or distinct to play. A similar thing happened the last time we tried to buff Devastate. Fury warriors said "Yummy," and gave up a big chunk of the Fury tree in order to get it.

[...] As I have said a couple of times now, a very deep BM talent to buff Arcane Shot might work. Otherwise, most of the BM damage is tied up in the pet or at least the pet being alive. Perhaps BM could benefit from a totally new mechanic, even it wasn't a signature shot, so that we would have more knobs to turn when we needed to buff BM (and only BM). (Source)

T7 4 piece Bonus
That was the point I was making. The original hunter bonus was "Your Explosive Shot, Chimera Shot and X Shot do more damage." The lack of an X shot (it couldn't be Arcane or Steady) killed the whole feature. We designed the DK expressly to have an X strike for every build. We could do that with hunters too. Some players are saying that just makes the specs more and more like each other though.

At a high level, you can have a trivial choice among your specs, which means it doesn't really matter which you pick so the decision is not terribly interesting. Or you can have significant differences among the specs, but that means one-size-fits-all balance solutions and even set bonuses are much harder. (Source)

PvP against Melee
I am saying circle strafing is not our vision for WoW PvP. It is supposed to be about using your abilities at the right time. We dont want to solve a balance problem by turning our PvP into a game where nobody ever stands still. I will turn this around, and say that your solutions need to account for a melee class being able to kill you even if you're a really clever hunter. Any of these solutions that approach "and that way melee won't ever be able to catch me" sound great if you're a hunter and not so great if you're a game designer. We don't want melee to clobber you every encounter. But we don't want you to kite them while shooting at them either. At least in the first example you are doing some damage to them. In the second, they don't even get a hit off. (Source)

Pet Avoidance
As we suggested in the QA, we are more likely to just remove Avoidance as a talent and make pets largely immune to mob AE damage. We did however add more talents to the pet trees specifically because many BM hunters said that they couldnt get anything really useful with their extra talent points. (Source)

Warlock (3.1 Skills List / 3.1 Talent + Glyph Calc.)
Buffing Demonology
I'm not saying we won't buff Demonology. I'm saying buffing Demonology to where it feels like a valid option to Destruction and Affliction puts it in a very narrow window. Buffing Demonology to a point where it is still 10% behind Destruction might not convince many players to change specs (except for those who just love Demo). (Source)

[...] We're not crazy about going back to the "this is the PvP tree" design.

But it is hard, and you can argue impossible, to make sure 3 dps trees all perform very similar to each other in a wide variety of encounters such that they feel like real choices. It is easier for say shamans or druids because the alternatives are so different that players aren't as likely to shift en masse from one to another. It depends a lot on what "very similar" means. For some players, they'll play a favorite spec that does 10% less damage than the optimal spec. For others, they only want to know "Who da best?" and could care less if the difference is only 1% (and therefore likely swamped by their own player skill).

Please, don't interpret this as an announcement that we're giving up. It's just an acknowledgement that distinct but equal is pretty challenging, and can even shift immediately once players hit a certain threshold of gear. (Source)