In which Blizzard solves the melee vs ranged issue: THE PITY BUFF

Thanks to Fenris@rpg.net for the heads’ up on this one. There is some more information about the next WoW patch available, and one of the notes reads:

Melee classes will be getting a buff that is only active in the new raid to help them compete with ranged classes.

I read this as an acknowledgement of what most players recognise, which is that melee are hampered with respect to ranged as dps (esp in raids). This is largely because of the Cataclysm implementation of ‘bring the class not the player’ which reduced or removed most of the issues with ranged dps while not touching the melee classes requirement to always be in range.

I can only imagine the whining that will ensue if this new buff means that melee outdamage ranged by any significant amount.

But will the new buff and the rogue legendary daggers, entice raids to bring more melee classes along? Well, presumably they’ll bring a rogue along to pick up the legendary gear if they can. Otherwise, I suspect ranged will still be seen as the more flexible option unless Blizzard specifically designs melee friendly fights. I mean, how big does a special buff need to be to make up for the fact that some classes simply have a lot less dps time on the boss than others?

Also, although a blanket buff like this could be seen as acknowledgement of a design failure (of sorts), it offers an interesting glimpse into a future in which buffs become more associated with an instance than with an individual’s gear. We can see also that it fits with the tank threat changes in which a blanket boost was applied to fix a design problem (or at least make it irrelevant). I think that actually might be bang in line with making the game more accessible also. We’ll see.