I haven’t written much about the upcoming class changes in WoW because it’s a moving target. Lots of changes have been mentioned. Some have been added to the test realm and then removed again, and other things have been tried which weren’t expected.
One thing we can see is that there’s some fairly hefty class balancing in the works here. It’s not a few minor changes. One goal of the dev team is to rebalance the various tanks so that they’re all roughly competitive for all the new content. So with that in mind, druids and death knights are lined up for nerfs.
Intriguingly, I don’t have a link for the quote but it was implied that Sarth+3 was never meant to be easier with a druid or death knight tanking. How could they not realise that the huge health pool and/ or crazy cooldowns on the main tank would make that fight easier?
But aside from that, there are two different types of nerf:
- tweaking some numbers (a bit less damage, a bit less avoidance, a bit more health, etc)
- changes in the way the spec plays (different rotations, new abilities, etc)
Nerfs are always bad because they imply that the designers made a mistake, but sometimes its unavoidable. And changing the way a spec plays is all very well, but what if there comes a point where it just doesn’t feel like the class the player loved any more?
That’s the danger of it.
I feel bad for my friends who play DKs who loved the interactive way the cooldowns and the avoidance gear played into the tanking. It’s not that the cooldowns are going away, I’m sure they will be fine, but being effectively told that your cool effective class was a design error is hard to take. They’ll be more like warriors in future, I think. Just instead of a shield they have loads of extra armour from auras. It’s not really the “Hey y’all, look at this! I can tank with a 2-hander” that a lot of people were looking forwards to.
This is not to say that DK tanks weren’t overpowered. They took the warrior niche of having the best ‘oh shit’ abilities and magnified it to the extreme. And it was partly those defensive cooldowns that had made warriors the preferred progression tanks in the past.
I don’t want to be in a situation where I’m actively hampering my raid in progression content just by being there. So yay for nerfs, I guess.
But at the end of the day, I’ll judge 3.1 for (prot) warriors based on whether we get:
- dual specs
- more damage/ threat
- rage on dodge/parry so my threat doesn’t suffer when I get better gear
- Not having to spam heroic strike on every cooldown to keep competitive threat
The first two are definitely in the works. For the rest, I guess we’ll wait and see.
Any special changes you’d like to see for your class right now?