Sep 27th 2011 2:50AM This will probably get me canned but I am past caring now.
The game has been around long enough & they have enough data to predict what will happen in almost any given situation regarding set bonuses & each time these idiots try something they manage to mess it up. A simple minded 4 year old could come up with a more intelligent set bonus than these are. The T11 4 piece was pretty meh & the T12 2 piece is about the same proving Tyler's point.
For the 2 piece-if the times were 45 for aff/destro & 15 for demo it would make, very slightly, more sense from the point of view that afflict/destro have almost no "burst" & will prevent the 45 second DG from being a suicide pact for demo.
The 4 piece is too little for to short duration especially for the effort required to get the items. 30% for 20 seconds would be closer to the mark even though (as many others here have said) GC stated that soulburn would not be used for purely a dps increase.
If these aren't place holders & this tier goes ahead as is then its basically forcing players who wish to be effective in a raid/pvp setting to reroll.
I know the "A" team has gone to work on titan but having reached the "J" team ( J for Janitor) they have really swept the garbage into the corner,scooped it up & called it a set bonus!
Sep 19th 2011 9:19PM An interesting read. The idea of 3-5 spells in a short time performing the "burst" function is quite intersting. it keeps complexity which is a hallmark of warlocks but would give destro. burst without being a single nuke class. Speaking of single nuke classes-reading the mage feedback in Blizz. forums & the brighter mages are already speculating on mana pool inflation & their 4 piece set bonus & how soon they will be able to spam AB 100% in raid boss fights & how high the stacks will go-along with their dps- without running out of mana. GC said this happening in wrath was an aberation & would not happen again. But mages are already looking at it & it is certainly happening in Zanda heroics now.
On the subject of pets we are not like hunters whose pet is a companion. Our "pets" are demons- they are tools we summon, use as we choose & discard when we are finished with them. We should be able to choose our demon base on its utility for the task at hand not "you are destro so you must use the imp or fail". If Blizzard don't want to go the hunter pet route & I would prefer they do not from a class distinction point of view then equalise the dps between the demons & let utility be the desiding factor in which demon we use. For Demo. warlocks, who I think should be more reliant on pets, simply put a talent too far into the demo. tree for afflict/destro warlocks to reach to increase the dps of all the demo warlocks pets. This would require demo warlocks personal damage to be lower but with the added damage from their demon it would even out. They would need to make the Felguard the clear "demon of choice" because it is a "talent point" demon, not from a higher damage potential but give it more utility, either for the warlock or for the group ( read party/raid). Soulburn is usefull for demon changing but to be required to do this multiple times in a single fight becomes punishing.
I see no mention of ISF which I would hope means it has no place in the game. My sub. for wow was up the week before ISF was originally implemented & I was considering not resubbing as wow had not been as entertaining & destro which has always been my preference wasn't where I feel it should have been through most of wrath but when they did the patch the week before my sub was up destro "felt" good again so I did resubb. only to get ISF the week after. I do think 2 weeks being "right" in a 2 year? xpac is quite poor & with the obvious problems that the original design of ISF would create (haste capped at T11) Cataclysm has been well named- at least from a warlocks point of view.
Sep 9th 2011 7:55PM First Thank you for your reply. It covers all I could have said in many less words.
I have never lvled a Shaman past 10 so I don't know the playstyle. We have a couple in our guild & they do a very good job with either healing or dps as required. It has always seemed to me that totems could be somewhat clunky though again how you change totems during an encounter & if this causes issues I don't know.
Warlocks are now thinking of themselves as a utilty class though this is more in pvp than pve. Just being fearbots in arena gives no satisfaction I am told. Being balanced around having a shaman healer & then being effectively unkillable but also unable, because of interupts/silences to do effective damage seems to me to be at cross purposes & makes casual PvP without a healer almost an impossibility- warlocks become a free HK.
Destro which is suposed to be the nuke tree is now a dead specc as it has not scaled with gear from the start of the xpac & is more dot heavy than affliction which is supposed to be "the" dot tree. Affliction has such a slow ramp up that any time burst damage is needed I burst out laughing.
I was completely digusted with the CM-daxarri- for trolling the warlock thread that he did. The thread was started about the declining population of warlocks & there were quite a few good suggestions that were not only "buff me" threads & was building into a "how to play & fix warlock thread" when he/she came & purposly tried to derail the thread. Whats worse is he provided no proof of his claim & now trolls are quoting this post to troll other threads.
Sep 9th 2011 5:29AM On the whole a very well written post & very informative on the devs thinking & goals.
I created my warlock in October 2005 & played it as my main almost exclusively since & have some issues with some things GC said however.
"Given the opportunity, there is no doubt various among you would make individual design decisions differently, and in some cases I have no doubt your decision might have been better. We'd love to see discussion on this issue, though. How much change is good? When can a problem chill for a few months as opposed to needing immediate attention?"(GC)
I have been visiting the blizzard forums from before Cata. launched & posting on them for a good few months now. There have been many, many threads posted in the DD (damage dealing) forums, which the devs. are reputed to keep an eye on & the class forums which the devs. are not reported to visit much if at all, dealing with class problems with warlocks & balance issues involving other classes. There are quite a lot of very well thought out suggestions & well written comments on the state of most classes in general & warlocks specifically. Most of the better posts do not want buffs only serious bug fixes & truly awful mechanics sorted out. Unfortunately a good many of these threads are locked before meaningful discussion can happen, they are moved to the warlock forums-even when the discussion regards multiple classes. Entire threads are deleted with no warning or recourse. Worst of all CMs (blues) -specifically Daxarri comes to mind- actually troll threads in an attempt to derail the thread. Daxarri has posted well written threads in the rogue forums so the person is no fool but in a position of moderator, blizzard employees cannot be allowed to do this but they do so with complete impunity.
"if you don't change anything, then the game feels stale and players understandably get frustrated that long-standing bugs or game problems aren't addressed."(GC)
At the start of Cata. Destro warlocks were balanced around a known bug with the imp "double dipping: on a damage buff. The bug was fixed but there was no revision of the way in which destro warlocks were balanced thus reducing their dps even on top of poor scaling & many other issues- dare I mention ISF- that are driving players away from the class & the game. Most warlocks have changed from destro. to afflict. not from choice but to simply keep their raid slot. 10 months or almost halfway through the expansion & the same problems still exist. ISF has been a kludge from the very start. A 15% haste buff for 15 seconds with a 15 second cool down that warlocks were balanced around having up 100% of a fight should never have made it to the PTR let alone to live. The main problem though was that the haste buff would have players haste capped before the end of T11. These problems were found & posts were made informing the devs of this very early in the PTR but the game shipped & went much of the way through T11 before ISF was changed to a damage buff that was actually worse but also made the spell cast (without the haste buff) so long you can go make coffee whilst its cast. The only improvement was the internal CD was dropped.
"We try to gather a lot of voluntary information from players -- when they are cancelling their subscription, for example -- about why they feel the way they do."(GC)
The now rapidly diminishing number of players of the warlock class due to clunky mechanics & bugs, like pet bars disappearing, have made no difference.
Sep 6th 2011 11:29PM One thing of note: the elemental encounters that we've seen this expansion. Al'Akir and Ragnaros are very large creatures that have highly annoying hitboxes when it comes to spells. While their hitboxes are gigantic, every spell has to travel for several seconds in order to smack them right in the face. Normally, travel time is a passing concern on a boss encounter, yet on these types of encounters, a spell will literally not land until you've already gotten several others off. For a spell like Haunt, this is an issue.
I have noticed this especially on Ragnaros. In fact I have had to start casting haunt when the timer is still at 3 or 4 seconds remaining to get it there before corruption falls off!
I don't find too much of a problem with the Sons of Ragnaros though I haven't had a lot of tries at them.
I also noticed that no mention of PvP was made in regards to the balance issues. That will open an entirely new can of worms. I also agree that players do only look at DPS/Damage Done-more in PuGs than any guild raids I have been in where buffs etc are generally discussed before the final makeup of the raids are set.
The guild I raid with haven't had a shadow priest raiding until recently & our highest dps has been a boomkin & also the best choice for my DI. Since I have been able to use DI on a shadow priest I have found a noticable difference in my dps over putting it on the boomikin. Though he is unhappy because his dps has dropped. Bringing buffs/utility to a raid is good but I do feel that being balanced around having a shadow priest for DI & then being sub optimal when there is not one available isn't good design. If DI gave the target a 1% buff to their best stat-agility for hunter/rogue, strength for warrior etc whilst giving the warlock 3% Int. buff (stacking 3 times etc) this would even out the "bumps in the road" from where it is now & make every class viable for it rather than "class A" is best & the warlock gains less benefit from not having "class A" available.
Aug 29th 2011 8:46PM I still have my T2 head & some of the gear. I also have http://www.wowhead.com/itemset=702#screenshots & have http://www.wowhead.com/item=30894 to go with it. Back in BC when I would fly up in this gear everyone ran like hell!!!
Aug 26th 2011 8:23PM A very insightfull column.
I doubt this is the place for this but. I was dropped from what would have been my first (& the guilds third) Domo kill-our other team has done it twice as we have been evaluating new members. We are a casual guild & only raid 3 nights a week-with all the interuptions from restarts etc that we have on oceanic servers /sigh.
We had a very competent heals priest switch from heals to shadow as our usual shadow priest is off on maternity leave (lol) so she started low but soon reached parity with boomkin,shammy,myself (warlock),rogue & hunter. In our last 5 attempts (of 14) The boomkin,shammy & myself were all changing places for top damage done with the priest fourth & all four of us within 1% of each other. The rogue is our GM & the hunter was DCing often. We all learned each of the steps as around half the raid had never seen Domo & 1 of the heals (a new/trial member) was 1/7 at the start of the raid. At the end of the night we were executing the fight very well & having single figure % wipes as the healers were gong OOM & knew we would down him the folloing night.
The following night the trial healer (druid) was replaced by the heals leader/officer (druid) as well as a pally who couldn't raid that night for another pally so the heals team was stronger. The shammy & I were replaced-I was not told any thing just dropped from the raid group-by another feral druid & an officer (warrior) who rarely raids but always seems to have a raid spot. The boomkin was 0.5% higher on damage done, the rogue,warrior & hunter (who wasn't DCing) were at the same damage done as we were the previous night,the feral druid was 15% lower & the priest dropped 40% well under the tank! When I was there she had dark intent but this seems to much of a drop for even that.
On the fifth atempt they "fell over the line"-raid leaders comment (I was on vent in channel) & to add insult to injury the tier shoulder token dropped (pally,priest,warlock) the priest won & has the shadow item equiped. I thought she was going back to heals when our usual SP returns. I have since declined all raid invites & have not spoken in guild chat-I am normally reasonably chatty & always say hello all etc as i log in. I have no idea if any one has noticed or cared.
Aug 18th 2011 11:02PM Damn I knew I kept my old sets for something-it may cost me some gold but I do remember the Merc. (?) set from BC for my warlock-players ran at the sight of it...welcome back awsome looking gear instead of 2 bent horns on a bag on his head.
Jul 27th 2011 6:47PM @ Acaila I tried power auras with just the word Bane & it worked perfectly-even put the correct icon in so Thank you. You have helped me greatly :)
Jul 26th 2011 6:33PM ty I had a look at the utube video & I like the way its set up to warn when debuffs etc are about to drop off. I have it set so the timer shows how long remains so I can alter my prioroties if a movement phase is coming or another mechanic requires me to change quickly. I will try the "Bane" setting with don't use exact name & see how I go with that.