Mar 152011

What’s up Cats and Kittens (Sorry just wanted to try that out)

With Syl and myself getting use to our new roles on the site, sadly I’ve let a couple things slip under the radar I’d like to take a moment to address right now. The 4.1 changes announced so far have been dismal for the needed changes in feral 4.1 dps improvements; however, we have seen a few quality of life changes that I’d like to take a moment to discuss with everyone.

  • A dead player can now be resurrected by targeting them using the Party or Raid Frame even if they have released. No more hunting for corpses.

It doesn’t happen often but when it does you really want to /facepalm. A key raider goes down and thinks to themselves this is the perfect time to click the release button. Now your raid leader is screaming at you, “I don’t care if you can’t find them get them up now!” While said raider is yelling, “I died next to the stairs!” Well no more!!! I like to think of this as a situational dps increase, time spent mousing over the entire battle field was time wasted from dps. A change that I can’t complain about.

  • Druids now innately have 100% pushback protection from damage while channeling Tranquility.

Again another quality of life change. The amount of times I would pop tranq in a pinch to just get half of it pushed back due to heavy aoe raid damage was numerous. This will make feral tranqs that much more clutch in both 10 and 25m raid settings. Again not great news for dps, but good news nonetheless.

As most of you are aware blizzard has started a new blog called the Dev Q&A series. The first Q&A went out and I have to say I was not impressed at all. While their claim is we just answered the questions that we’re voted up the highest, sadly most of the questions they answered were things they’ve addressed in simple blue posts since the new forums have launched. There was only one question asked that recieved an answer from all specs of the druid community, this question was asked by squiggly line, squiggly line, tiny airplane, happy flamingo from Taiwan, he asks:

  • Q: Moonkins lack the “execution” phase spell or talent, is that an intended design and why? –輕體小子 (Taiwan)
    A: While it’s true that a lot of character classes have a special ability they can use at the 20% health mark, we didn’t set out to make sure everyone had one. Balance druids have changed a lot in the last two expansions and went from a pretty simple rotation (spam Wrath or Starfire) to a pretty complex one. We’re not sure at this time they need yet another mechanic to manage, but it’s a potential design direction to explore for the future.

While it made me sad to see that there are Boomkins out there asking for more ways to improve their dps over ours, I can’t help but wonder if he realizes the feral execute is arguably the weakest of all class and specs. If it wasn’t for bite refreshing rip under 25% there’s a good chance that feral kitties would just skip that talent anyway.  I’m just happy that blizzard agreed that Boomkins don’t need another mechanic to manage making us look silly in current content. The next Q&A series is all about pvp so don’t hold your breath anything useful will be addressed there either.

I still hold hope, numerous changes have been anounced to different classes and their aoe abilities, and there’s not to many classes left to adjust other then us. So keep your paws crossed, hopefully we’ll get some patch notes about us very soon. If they’re announced I promise not to take a week to get a discussion going on the site.

Until next time


 Posted by at 10:00 pm

  17 Responses to “Late Look at Quality of Life Changes”

  1. Bleh, Boomkins don’t need an execute phase at all imo, all it would essentially be is another Starfire/Wrath/Starsurge spell with the effect it could only be used at 25% and lower. And they already complain about the blandness of those 3 spells + 2 relatively undynamic dots…they need an overhaul (or destruction preferably) of the Eclipse mechanic first before considering another execute-like spell.

    Or alternatively to grind a few gears, beef up Starsurge, lower its CD a tad, and make it the execute-spell to go to, while changing around SS a bit as well I suppose. That and a glyph rework too…

    But otherwise, the lack of feral buffs is saddening, other than regaining (in a weakened form) snare breaking.

  2. “squiggly line, squiggly line, tiny airplane….”

    Made me lol :-)

  3. I’m just happy someone caught it :D

  4. Actually there was a second question answered about boomkins. It had to do with PvP. You might have missed it because the answer also included hunters and Blizz basically said that boomkins and hunters are good at rated BG’s so they don’t intend to change them for arena.

    On a side note may I suggest a little discussion (maybe in forums) about skull bash and interrupts. Due to the GCD and energy cost it might help people better manage their energy so they make sure they have enough when the time comes to actually interrupt.

  5. Thanks for the writeup!

    As for thoughts…. eh, more crumbs and scraps from the table in my humble opinion — or mechanics that should have been fixed 2 years ago.

    I don’t think we really have a knowledgeable voice in their development team, and so the changes to come our way seem random, and not particularly exciting.

  6. Nica I’ve always thought that as well. Then I look at our class verses others and the issues as easy as they are to identify are rather complex to fix, lets take a look at Arcane Mages
    Well our damage is low because our mastery requires a high mana pool but our attacks drain us to quickly. The answer is simple lower the cost of the spells and the damage goes up.
    With Feral Cats the issue is simple enough we need a faster way to get on a target, as well as a relook of our damage coefficients in terms of bleeds and more importantly bite. However, exactly how would you go about a simple fix for this that wouldn’t drastically effect ferals in terms of pvp and the over powered state we were in at cata’s release.

    • And that leads us right back to the major flaw in the design. the mixing and trying to balance both PvP and PvE.

      To make matters worse I think Blizz follows a certain pattern. Nerf when damage is too high in arena. It really seems like arena is the driving force on most changed to damage.

      • Yeah when looking at how blizzard could potentially increase cat dps, its a hard question to answer.

        There’s loads of quality of life changes that could happen, like shred from front and bite damage increases to make it worth using.

        But hard to find something that just gives us a simple overall boost.

        • I’ve always have thought that our damage is fine, we’re just not able to push out enough attacks in a boss fight. To be we need something that gives us a small energy gain when it procs. Like when fury swipes hit or ooc fires off we gain 15 energy or something small. It would make the world of difference in our wait time.

        • I disagree completely with the extra energy thing Qbear. Sometimes when I miss a shred several times in a row and then I get an OOC proc I’m spamming as hard as I can trying not to cap energy. Of course there are also times where I’m chomping at the bit to get enough energy to refresh rake or something. More random energy procs are not the answer, IMO.

          As people have said, we aren’t that far off from the top melee. We just look bad compared to the ranged. Buffing FB about the same amount they buffed shred would be just about perfect. It gives us back the 3 finisher playstyle and it would be a small overall damage increase. Maybe a very small white damage increase on top of that would be nice, but I’m not greedy.

          Of course the AoE situation is still a complete mess. I hope the only reason they haven’t said anything about it for ferals is because they are working on something really new and cool.

  7. @Goodmongo — I couldn’t agree with you more. Why Blizzard continues with this fundamentally flawed model is absolutely beyond my comprehension, and many times, WoW feels like a game that is assembled by a bunch of volunteers rather than paid professionals at a supposedly top gaming studio.

    It seems that even a bonesaw-solution, like a 3rd, PvP-only talent spec (which would be required in order to harm another player in BGs / Arenas), would solve a lot more problems than it would create.

    As it stands, we’re told to wait, and trust. We were told to wait, and trust when Wrath came out, how everything would even itself out @ 80. It never did, and Blizzard missed the opportunity to shift the PvP/PvE model in Cata. Pretty astounding, if you ask me!

    @QBear Back in Wrath, Blizzard was experiencing the same problem with Rogues — how to increase sustained damage without “breaking” PvP balance, i.e., burst.

    Their answer was to dramatically increase the haste provided by Slice’n’Dice (the ability that Savage Roar is loosely based on,) which seemed like an acceptable fix, if I remember.

    Regardless of whether buffing Savage Roar might help our sustained damage without increasing burst, one of the main issues is that they’ve lobotomized our rotation, and frankly, I don’t expect a “fix” to that in 4.1.

    Another issue is that a lot of smart / theorycrafting ferals have become so demoralized, not so much by the fundamental changes in 4.0.6, but more by the aggravating silence of developers leading up to the release of that patch, that there doesn’t seem to exist the kind of vigorous discourse between good ferals and the developers that seemed to exist in times past.

    • @Satrion I agree with your statement as well. Like you said feral damage is the lowest of the melee, but not by such a margin that a good feral will beat out worse players of different classes. After all the only fight in current content I’m actually battling for last place on is heroic Maloriak, and to be honest last couple kills I’ve been tanking this.

      @Nica I’ve always felt Blizz has been trying to move too quickly with cata so far and are just having a hard time keeping the train on the tracks. I mean there’s still so many people who haven’t gone 12/12 normal and they’re already starting to nerf all the heroic modes. You wouldn’t even believe all the loling going on in vent when we pulled the twin dragons in BoT on Tuesday. Sux that feral dps had to be the rail car they forgot to connect to the engine, but at the same time I still hold hope seeing as for right now we’re decent. If we stay the same and all the changes go out for 4.1; however, then I’m rerolling a hunter!

      • This may seem an odd question, but have you ever been asked to add tank for H Meloriak? The reason I ask is our MT is a warrior that is still a little grumpy about being sat for H LK25.

        So now for every boss he insists, “I am the MT so I am always on the boss”. He first tried to get our feral tank to pick up adds, then our Pali tank to tank them. Finally we had our best DPS warrior spec Prot and we downed it in 4 attempts.

        I gues the question I have is have you heard of any guilds attempting to use ferals to tank adds on any Heroic encounters?

        • Not an odd question at all. I’ve tanked nearly every HM that my guild has downed and honestly through out all of it I’ve only ever tanked more then one mob on Halfus.
          Can bears tank adds on Mel? Sure. But honestly I’d stick a shield tank on them just because dks and druids work better single target while wars and pallys shine when theres more then 1.

  8. The problem with a comment like “a good feral will beat out a worse player of a different class” ignores the real issue of a lower DPS.

    We can’t rely on other players being bad. We can’t say “Hey RL our rogue, DK and warrior all suck so take me”.

    Finally, what if those other players don’t suck?

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