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  • BenVis
  • Member Since Dec 7th, 2010

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Shifting Perspectives: Tanks, bribes, and player behavior {WoW}

Apr 12th 2011 5:34PM I don't think that the dungeons themselves are too hard, but I do think the new sorts of design choices make it harder for DPS (and to a slightly lesser extent tanks and healers) to actually learn how to do things right.

In Wrath, if something went wrong it was usually pretty easy to figure out why. This is because if you did it wrong, you died pretty much instantly. Things were easier, certainly, so things went wrong perhaps less often. We all knew the saying, and it was basically true, "If the tank dies it's the healer's fault, if the healer dies it's the tank's fault, and if the DPS dies, it's his own fault."

Now, though, the connection between mistake and failure is a lot harder to make. As a simple example, consider a mob who casts an interruptible, moderately high damage ability at a random target. Moderate damage can probably be healed through once or twice, but if enough interrupts get missed, the healer falls behind and the tank dies.

By the Wrath mentality, that was the healer's fault. We (being so wise) all know that most of the group has interrupts, and probably at least one has a fast enough cooldown to hit every cast, so a well-informed player would say, "oh, on this mob it's really important we catch the interrupts." However, there's nothing in the game interface that will tell you that.

To summarize, the changes to mob behavior, player health and healer mana (among other things) have made failure something that can accumulate over time rather than that can always be attributed to a single point of failure. This makes it harder to learn how to handle a dungeon. That doesn't mean the only answer is easier dungeons; it might be possible to fix this with UI improvements.

Shifting Perspectives: Tanks, bribes, and player behavior {WoW}

Apr 12th 2011 5:15PM I kind of like your idea. At the end of a run (I don't know what happens if the run doesn't get to the end), everyone is presented with a little UI widget with each player's name/role, and a checkbox. Did the person do alright? and it could even default to yes. An unchecked box would stop you from ever being randomed with that person. I guess you could even display the results to each person, like 4/4 of your groupmates said you did alright! or 0/4. Try harder!

I doubt, though, that even the most dedicated Pugger would ever pug with a large enough chunk of the population to actually change the quality of life due to your blacklisting players you don't like.

Spiritual Guidance: A first look at patch 4.1 for priests {WoW}

Mar 1st 2011 5:21PM A change designed to fix a problem that mostly occurs in the larger raids and at the higher end of gearing is having a pretty big effect on all other aspects of the game. The problem being solved is laid out well in Dawn's post and subsequent comment: Spending entire fights blanketing as many people as possible is 1) unreasonably effective (assuming you can sustain it*) and 2) boring.

* This assumption is crucial. More on that later.

I agree that this is a problem if the 'unreasonably effective' assumption is true. In my fresh-out-of-heroics gear, I really can't afford to cast very many PW:S that don't proc rapture. I can cast them in a pinch, but it's simply not a reasonable response to, say, an ability that hits 3-5 raid members every 30s or whatever. Certainly, trying to blanket 10 or 25 people in PW:S would OOM me in short order. I guess with higher-end gear, and the support of lots of other classes' mana return cooldowns, it could be sustainable.

In general, as gear gets better for disc priests, PW:S blanketing becomes more affordable (because of more mana and regen) and more effective (because mastery and spell-power are higher). I would think this would scream to a developer that combating PW:S blanketing by raising the cost is the wrong way to go, since your solution is eroding with every tier of gear.

Shortening the duration sort of solves the problem (unless you bring 2 disc priests for your 25m raid, as a comment above suggested). I think with the duration change, though, a cost reduction is in order. That way, I can use PW:S as a sort of pre-emptive group heal without running out of mana, but the high-end raiders will be less likely to demand bubble-blankets.

Absent a reduction in PW:S cost, I think discipline needs some kind of response to group damage. Maybe adding some component to mastery that boosts our other group heal options could work. I think the PoH/aegis thing was a good try, but maybe making mastery improve the actual healing of PoH would be a better call, or providing a bigger boost to aegis in general, or making the guaranteed aegis on PoH a lot bigger, so the absorb really means something.

Of course, the shorter duration has other problems, as others have mentioned. I haven't done much PvP lately, so I can't comment on that. While leveling as shadow, I didn't use PW:S much, but it would be great if a fix could be found to acomodate those concerns.

This might be too wacky, but maybe the 15s duration only needs to be on disc, or a 15s duration increase could be rolled into shadow form (because hey, who doesn't love long tooltips?)

The Queue: Lefse {WoW}

Jan 6th 2011 12:48PM Hot off the griddle with a little butter and some brown sugar is my favorite way.

WoW Insider's Cataclysm Launch Giveaway: GeForce GTX 460 graphics card {WoW}

Dec 7th 2010 1:54PM My world has been shattered.