Well, hey, how about that Inner Rage, huh? I seem to recall asking for something like that a couple of weeks ago. Maybe I can see the future. In which case, where are these insights when big lottery jackpots are on the line?
So far, looking over the warrior changes I see some good, some bad, some very good and some we don't know yet. So let's get down to brass tacks, as it were.
I really have nothing negative here. I hope they can make it work out, since in Wrath the biggest issue with this ability was its targeting. I assume they're getting around that by making it require a target to work, as the language seems to indicate.
Looking at these changes, the first thing I notice is that several old mainstays of the class are getting revamped. We already knew about the Rage Normalization and Heroic Strike changes, of course. There's more on the changing table than just those, though.
We knew they were talking about making shouts give rage instead of take rage (I hope they reconsider on Demoralizing, though; it would be bad to not be able to apply it to a hard-hitting boss because it was on cooldown), but the change to Whirlwind is one I expected and even demanded a few times. Whirlwind is the reason Titan's Grip was too good before the 10% damage tax was added, because it hit with both weapons and was an instant attack with a short cooldown. Reducing the damage it does but increasing its target cap will make it more of a real AoE and much less attractive than the new Heroic Strike for single-target DPS. (Frankly, with this change, TG doesn't need that penalty anymore, and I hope they rethink it.)
Mortal Strike and Sunder Armor, though -- these are as close to sacred cows as the warrior class has. Mortal Strike has propped up the arms warrior in PvP through two expansions where his or her damage has swung wildly from extreme to extreme. Sunder is so iconic that there are entire guilds with names like "Wait for Sunders" out there. I'm not terribly excited to hear that MS is getting a pretty hefty reduction in its effectiveness. It seems to me like it will go from feeling mandatory to feeling absolutely pointless with so massive a drop in its percentage, combined with large health pools and smaller heals. Likewise, adjusting Sunder in this way will really need to watch Devastate and its threat component for prot warrior tanks.
There's new stuff to talk about too, of course.
I like the mechanic of a benefit to having max rage (since I've called for it like six times, I'd better), and I'm interested in seeing if Inner Rage ends up overly expensive. Paying half again as much rage for 15% more damage seems ... a tad high. A 20 rage ability doing 1,000 damage would cost 30 rage and do 1150 damage? Not terribly exciting. The concept is sound, but the numbers need tweaking.
Gushing Wound is your PvP rend. It could also be good for fights where a boss or target moves around a lot ... Gushing Wounds would be pretty sexy on the Val'kyr in the Arthas fight, for instance. Heck, with Arthas being kited around a lot in P2 and P3, you might want to use it there, too.
Even though I play primarily as fury when I DPS, I am cognizant that Disarming Nature and Blitz are pretty hot. Especially if Blitz affects Heroic Leap as well as Charge. (Even if it doesn't, it's still nice. Charge should do some damage; it's pretty silly how little it hits for.) Still, while both are nice, arms definitely feels like it's not getting anything really special to replace that huge hit MS takes. Losing poleaxe and mace spec, then getting sword spec for all weapons doesn't really seem entirely fair, either.
Furious Sundering will make Sunder an actual attack and with Whirlwind moving into the role of true AoE, we might well see Sunder and HS filling its part of a fury warrior's "rotation." Single-Minded Fury will make a lot of fury warriors who wanted to keep on using 1H weapons happy. I may even build a fist weapon set for my SMF spec. Although I do still love you, Titan's Grip. And Imp Pummel may actually motivate that one fury warrior in your raid who refuses to pummel to start doing it.
Now we should take a look at how Mastery is going to work for warriors. First, I'm going to talk about prot and its mastery tree, as it contains a concept other tanks are going to see.
Damage Reduction as the first-tier prot mastery is pretty self-explanatory. Expect to see something like it for all tanks.
Critical Block Chance is, well, a chance to block for more. It's good. Remembering the incoming block changes, buffing a 30% damage reduction to a 60% reduction is pretty fine. Vengeance does nothing to solve the problem of prot warriors' trying to do meaningful DPS when not directly tanking something. But the idea is sound as a means to keep warrior tanking DPS on par with other tanks while tanking, at least, a situation that hasn't been the case for almost all of Wrath. It's actually a fairly elegant solution to the old "how does being a punching bag make me threatening" idea of tanking, and it takes the basic idea of old rage generation (the harder you get hit, the harder you can hit back) and makes it something all tanks will share.
Arms and fury, meanwhile, share the first tier of their mastery, which makes sense. Both are DPS specs, both should have an increase to DPS as a mastery benefit, so Melee Damage works as a good shared mastery. The second tier for arms is Armor Penetration, meaning that the old Mace Spec benefit is now a passive for all arms warriors using any weapon they like, which is a step forward. Finally, as stated before, arms gets the bonus swing of Sword Specialization as their top-tier mastery, meaning that while poleaxe's crit is gone gone gone, all arms warriors will effectively have both mace and sword spec with any weapon they want. That's not too bad.
Fury's second-tier mastery will be melee haste, and since we know that haste will be helping with rage generation in Cataclysm, that's a pretty solid second-tier ability. Admittedly, it's not earth-shaking. The final tier ability, Enrage Intensity, will benefit all enrage effects (abilities like Enraged Regeneration, Death Wish, Enrage, Bloodrage and so on), making them better in all ways. This has the potential to be really, really good. It might even make Enrage worth taking again, although with that and Death Wish not stacking, you may prefer the on-use nature of Death Wish to the "maybe it will proc" nature of Enrage.
In the end, I'm cautiously excited for fury (especially for our friends who wanted a return to 1H weapons) and protection, but I think arms needs more love and hope future previews provide it.
Edited to add: Bornakk has posted more details on the forums. Look for an extended analysis of all the details tomorrow.
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm will destroy Azeroth as we know it. Nothing will be the same. In WoW.com's Guide to Cataclysm you can find out everything you need to know about WoW's third expansion. From Goblins and Worgens to Mastery and Guild changes, it's all there for your cataclysmic enjoyment.