Posts Tagged ‘death knights’

We got a hint last week, from a series of Brian Holinka and Ghostcrawler tweets, that our Tricks of the Trade spell was likely to get a poke to reduce its synergy with some death knight diseases — particularly the so-called “festerblight” rotation, which gives Unholy DKs some pretty amazing damage potential in a way that wasn’t entirely intended. (Think what would happen if we found a way to extend Shadow Blades indefinitely. Kinda like that.)

Last week, a patch note update included some direct nerfs to festerblight that surprised and frustrated many Unholy players who felt the change was coming out of left field. The devs took a closer look and decided that it wasn’t festerblight itself that was causing the biggest issue — it was how festerblight was being enhanced by the 15% damage boost granted by a friendly nearby rogue casting Tricks of the Trade at the proper moment(s).

Which led to those DK nerfs from last week being reverted in today’s official patch note update, and replaced with this:

  • Blood Plague no longer benefits from the damage increase granted by Tricks of the Trade.
  • Frost Fever no longer benefits from the damage increase granted by Tricks of the Trade.

This concludes the part of the post where I continue to have any clue what I’m talking about. (Actually, that part may have concluded about halfway through the first sentence.) But because I want to find some closure to the post, I’m going to try to stretch this into some kind of meaningful statement about how this provides a nice reminder that rogue changes aren’t always about balancing rogues in particular; they’re about trying to keep rogue abilities and rogue strengths/weaknesses in balance with the other classes in the game, and trying to ensure that no single grouping of classes becomes clearly superior to others in situations like progression raiding or 3v3 arena (where, for instance, rogue/hunter/priest has proven extremely strong in 5.2, and is seeing hits across that team as a result).


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Ask not what your rogue can do for you; ask what it can do for your entire raid team.

Here’s an exchange that PvP cap’n Brian Holinka had with players on Twitter earlier today around some planned DPS nerfs to Death Knights. I’ve got no deep/useful analysis to provide here, except maybe to note the glimpse this gives us into just how complex class-change decisions can be, no matter how small they seem. It’s also an important reminder of how, sometimes, a change that we may think is a slam-dunk ends up having entirely unexpected consequences in PvE and PvP situations.


[UPDATE 5/9:] Ghostcrawler added these responses a bit later on.

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BlizzBlues typically avoid, in plaguelike fashion, any direct class-vs.-class comparison of a single tool in the toolkit. They’re fond of saying — and rightly so — that classes aren’t created to be hard counters with one another, and that if they all had the same tools, they’d all basically be the same class (which might be very nicely balanced, but would also be the most boring thing in the history of ever).

That made it a little surprising that WoW PvP honcho Brian Holinka engaged in some back-and-forth last night over Shadowstep, and how the ability — which is currently a level-60 talent option — stacks up against the baseline mobility-aiding spells that other classes get. It’s a bit of an odd comparison, and as you’ll see Holinka doesn’t just talk about the ability in a bubble (since its synergy with other abilities, such as Cloak of Shadows, can add to its strength). But it’s one of those cool little glimpses into the way the mind of a senior PvP designer works and how he regards the strengths and weaknesses of rogues compared to other classes.

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Here’s a tweetversation that started off nowhere and then went somewhere really interesting. And I say that not only because I got involved and Ghostcrawler replied to something I said. Well, OK, primarily because of that.

(UPDATE 12/19: This has turned into one of the longest conversations GC has been engaged in thus far in his young tweexistence. I’ve added a ton of new tweets to the exchange since originally posting this on 12/18; everything below is kind-of in order from oldest to newest, though I’ve tried to group related tweets together where I could.)


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@zNaTuu: “@Ghostcrawler Many said the Rogue dps is too low and the energyreg seems very very slow. Are you going to change something?”

@Ghostcrawler: “@zNaTuu Rogue dps in PvE is fine. Keeping a close eye on them in PvP though.”

@HayakuEl: “@Ghostcrawler Tell me, how are rogues in pve fine? We are getting our asses outdone by friggin DK and Monks in tanking specc. GG, GC.”

@Ghostcrawler: “@HayakuEl In what situation? Feng? He buffs tanks. Dungeons? Tanks historically win there, but it’s uptime not DPS.”

Twitterized 10/8/2012

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