Apr 102012

I need to take the time to flesh this into a full post, but here’s a quick outline as to what I’m seeing so far.

-Wild Charge and Ursol’s Vortex are both great and fun to use, though probably OP.
-Healing/Ranged spells are much more effective, though mana-limited. Tossing a few Wraths or Healing Touches as feral is cool.
-The glyph redesign nails the design intent (fun, not mandatory) very well (though the Glyph of Cat Form with its +20% healing received is too strong as-is).

-Now that there’s an ability that can remove bleeds (Monk Detox), Rip needs some form of dispel protection; ideally, an ability that scales in effectiveness based on the number of CP’s Rip was applied with. I’m not a PvP’er at all, so I have no idea if this would work or not, but I like the idea of 1-2 ticks of damage being instantly applied if it’s dispelled. For that matter, Savage Roar needs something similar, I’ve made this point before, but having an expensive effect removed by a less expensive effect sucks. Now, if dispels end up being very expensive, that’s a different story.
-With Disentanglement and Wild Charge, our uptime (PvP) will be significantly increased, which means our burst damage will go down quite a bit. Depending on how strong/expensive healing is in Mists, that could either be good or bad.

-Reversion of SR from 70% white damage to 30% all damage, making it much more important + significantly decreased crit chance + no free Ravages = more difficult rotation. FB mostly eliminated from rotation except during Berserk. It won’t be as bad as it was in WOTLK (no Mangle debuff to keep up, Rake 15sec baseline) but it subverts Cataclysm’s design intent of “make the feral rotation less punishing.”
-The above + generally increased white damage overall means a much greater DPS penalty from pausing your rotation as damage profiles will shift away from DoTs.So, why brez/clone/do all that other fun hybrid stuff we’re encouraging druids to do? Let’s not even talk about how fun target changes are going to be (though Symbiosis-ing with a rogue/lock might counteract that to a degree).

  51 Responses to “My (rough) thoughts on ferals currently”

  1. “(though the Glyph of Cat Form with its +20% healing received is too strong as-is).”

    How is it too strong? It’s the same bonus that the live talent Nurturing Instinct provides. Let’s not forget that MOP Ferals will no longer have access to SI, Frenzied regen, Natural Reaction and Savage Defense. We will be squishier than today.

    • He means it’s too strong for a glyph, which it is, it’s guaranteed to take up a slot in every feral druids major glyphs.

      It should be made passive; pretty much every other glyph I could see sacrificing for another one, they are pretty well balanced aside from this one.

  2. Aside from the point that Cap’n made (lack of CDs, survivability related), the actual output of feral is fairly low, albeit, from the nerfs to base % dmg on abilities and better scaling, from what’s available, they’re in a bad place.

    Yes, it’s beta. Yes, some of this will change.

    We’ll be back to a boring playstyle, SR giving love, and in general, we’ll be back to WotLK.

    The switches made to increase our hybridization, CDs for massive healing and ability to use casted spells, is supposed to make it more interesting, though, at the end of the day, it doesn’t make up for the lack of work done to improve the quality of life.

    As for the pvp rip-safety, I don’t see that happening, due to past experiences with abilities in the same boat (1 being Sur with Black Arrow). The work around was allocating more damage into other abilities, similar to what happened to feral when bleeds got nerfed, albeit that was to off-set total damage, I suspect that we’ll be put into a similar boat in the future, so that the Monk’s “loofa” (who remembers that trinket?) doesn’t take such a catastrophic toll.

    I keep looking at Symobiosis… one “fun” ability DOES NOT make up for all of the problems not being addressed, nor the problems being added.

    At the end of the day, it’s making me think to quit altogether or find a different class to play.

    • How is Black Arrow in the same boat as Rip? Black Arrow is ONE instant shot, ONE GCD. Rip takes 5 Combo Points. It’s exactly the point Alaron is trying to make: an ability this expensive shouldn’t just be dispellable by the click of a button for a moderate amount of mana.

  3. I really hope they add some buffs or get some more feral love going. I am completely devoted to cat form and from the changes I’ve read (which still could change) I feel that feral is being shoehorned in for utility without being a strong DPS contender. We will see I guess…

  4. Quickly-

    CC- I understand it’s what we had before, but it’s too powerful as a glyph. The whole point is to get rid of mandatory glyphs, and that one would definitely be mandatory.

    Toro- Yep, though Black Arrow (and Combustion) complainers have the option of switching specs, we don’t really.
    Also, LUFFA, YES! My first trinket. :) Anyone else remember Moist Towelettes for Moroes? :P

    Sid- Well, once I finish writing my full thoughts I’ll xpost it to the beta forums and add a link here for people to jump in. Can’t do much more than that.

  5. Black Arrow is apples to our bleeds oranges. Black Arrow makes up 5-7% of a hunters over all damage on a single target fight. Less then 2% on a heavy aoe fight. Our bleeds make up around 40% of our damage. Being able to dispell Black Arrow is annoying but hardly game breaking. Same with combustion.

    Being able to dispell the sole focus of our mastery is pretty much game breaking.

  6. The fact that bleeds can be dispelled is rather flustering to me, but as a player who only passively PVP’s I doubt it’s impact on my play.

    I am actually pretty stoked that they made Savage Roar a 30% increase to everything again. I found the Wrath of the Lich King model of feral druid play to be the most engaging and fun that I have ever had, and been sorely missing from cataclysm. I find that most feral DPS’ers that I meet up with enjoyed feral much more in WOTLK as well. Besides, how hard is it to prioritize savage roar as your most important buff?

    On another tangent, I do not believe that the rotation is going to be anywhere near as unforgiving as it was back in the days of Wrath. I would love for them to hearken back to the times where maintaining all our buffs and debuffs required thinking many steps ahead. However, with how long rip and rake stay up naturally, and the fact that a 1 CP Savage Roar is now about how much a 3 CP Savage Roar was back in Wrath… it won’t be that unforgiving.

    I don’t mind that mangle has been removed from our rotation. As it stands it’s not even a debuff that I have to worry about, someone else in the raid has it covered as part of their regular DPS rotation. I don’t find mangle to be at all challenging or engaging to keep up even when the mangle bot warrior isn’t in raid.

    Lastly, yes… Fix our damage please. I do find it exhausting that feral’s damage has been ignored and put on the back burner for so long. To be perfectly honest, I wouldn’t care if Blizzard intention was to make Feral DPS a supportive DPS class, but then they better go all out and make it fully supportive, and in that case 100% needed for raids. Knowing Blizzard’s stance on making a class absolutely needed to progress, that will never happen… so we’re left with fix feral dps please.

    • Whether or not people actually loved savage roar in wrath is kind of inconsequential, changing this ability has one effect on our pve rotation and it’s to make us hit a 1 point sr immediately before doing anything else. There were tons of reasons they changed this, this ability doesn’t magically make the rotation better (or harder), and it really is bad design to put 30% of our damage onto a single (dispellable) ability.

      It ruins our aoe rotation – which is already getting extremely weird with the addition of thrash. Now before we start aoeing we have to mangle, sr, thrash, then finally swipe.

      This change also dramatically ruins pvp. I’ve done a bunch of pvp on beta and I can say without a doubt that our damage output is completely destroyed, and this ability is (almost) entirely the reason why. before we can even start putting out damage we have to expend almost an entire energy bar.

      I just don’t think nostalgia is a good thing to make design decisions off of. There were some very specific and important reasons SR was changed, and those reasons are now problems in mop again.

      • Wrath’s kitty model was nice in terms of risk/reward thinking constantly in a fight. Granted I’d never want to go back to the short mangle cd but with mists it looks like mangle will be a none issue. Unless blizzard does more front facing bosses (facepalm).

        SR changing back to 30% overall isn’t really a bad thing it just slightly changes our PvE rotation to the point where it really isn’t an issue. In terms of PVP SR/Rip being dispellable means death to feral pvp. 5cps instantly dispelled by 1gcd is too powerful.. Unless FB is going to do significantly more dmg to compensate which then would throw off pve numbers.

        I haven’t been on beta yet, so my info is all secondhand but not looking forward to the future of feral dps in Mists.

  7. Things like Black Arrow and Combustion have long CD’s, so they have a similar, but not identical, problem.

    • Black Arrow (24s) and Combustion (3min) aren’t about the CD, and it’s not about combo point to GCD relation: a major part of the dmg (albeit larger for Rip than BA), due to LoS/CC/etc, is removed and takes away from their ability to pvp in said spec.

      BA gives Lock and Load procs, meaning more Explosive Shots, and in general can break their dmg, significantly. The base 10% dmg from the ability, giving another 10% from dmg from the extra ES, putting it aroudn 20%. (PvE numbers)

      Rip is like 30% of dmg for us. (PvE numbers)

      It’s SIMILAR, as Alaron put in the last post, not identical.

      From a pvp standpoint, it’s the world of difference for either ability (for their respective user) to have it removed [/[email protected]].

      As for looking more into SR revert… supposedly (read from a post in guild chat) that a set bonus for tier might be that SR refresh to max duration by combo finisher used. I’d like to see his source, but it does make me wonder… this would be a hell of a significant increase to feraldom, allowing us to use FB more.

      Still not happy about it all =’/

  8. I would welcome a DPS operation as complex, if not moreso, than was the case for ferals in WotLK, provided it accompanied a return of ferals to being upper tier DPS (top 10%, at least). This may end up being the case for at least a patch or two, as I suspect there will be an agility staff/polearm legendary, since it would dovetail with the addition of the Monk (e.g., Shadowmourne Death Knights).

    • I’m almost certain we will see a legendary agi staff. Granted it probly won’t be till the last tier of raiding in MoP like Shadowmourne was.

      In the mean time love more class specific visual changes like fire kitty’s were in Firelands. It’s just something unique that each class could change appearance with a certain weapon… Thinking along the lines of how D2 has different models for entire sets. Then again I’d be happy with more feral only love in that regards. :D

  9. Looking at this skill that feral cats get: http://mop.wowhead.com/spell=16961

    Combo point every time your combo move deals a critical strike? So several targets, rake on all of them, huge amount of combo points? Considereing hat crit will be much lower in MoP, this still sounds like very very rng…

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