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Blue Posts Round-up: Apr 14

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The first PTR Build of 7.2.5 is now live and Blizzard continues the discussion of Brewmaster / Mistweaver Monks and changes are coming to Enhancement Shamans - BoulderfistBoulderfist will be baseline.

Brewmaster & Mistweaver Monks

The ongoing Monk discussion continues, as Blizzard's tuning the Monk class in 7.2.5. You can find all changes so far in the latest Patch 7.2.5 Patch Notes.

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That datamining is extremely incomplete. It's a 500pc jigsaw puzzle with 300 of the pieces missing. Best to wait for the actual PTR. You won't have to wait 14sec between Blackout StrikeBlackout Strikes. :)

This devalues the BoC talent as we see 33-25=8% fewer BoC's in our rotation. Considering on single target, with BoC, BoS and TP are my number 1 and 2 damaging abilities, are we going to see compensation in damage for this nerf?

We're worried about gameplay and feel right now, and will adjust damage (overall and per-talent) as needed afterward. 

This is very useful feedback, thanks.

As you can imagine, the numbers for Blackout StrikeBlackout Strike's cooldown and the CDR from Tiger PalmTiger Palm are very important to get right on this; we'll tweak them and try a few things. We started out with the 4-beat cycle for PTR; we may also try the 3-beat cycle soon and see how that feels.

One extremely important thing to evaluating the feel of this is what talents you were using. For example, Rushing Jade WindRushing Jade Wind + SpitfireSpitfire feel totally different from Eye of the TigerEye of the Tiger + Special DeliverySpecial Delivery, especially when it comes to GCD utilization. Please let us know which talents you're using when giving rotation feel feedback!

Thanks!

I'll be getting on PTR to test the rotation and such later, but I have one question about SpitfireSpitfire Celestalon. Why was Chi BurstChi Burst scrapped for it instead of Chi WaveChi Wave? Nobody uses Chi WaveChi Wave because of how weak (and random) it is, but Chi BurstChi Burst currently sees a decent amount of use on live servers for AoE.

Chi WaveChi Wave and Chi BurstChi Burst usage are about the same (and both are extremely rare compared to Eye of the TigerEye of the TigerEye of the Tiger). We chose Chi BurstChi Burst to replace to start with, because SpitfireSpitfire is an AoE talent, same as Chi BurstChi Burst, so would fulfill the same choice. There's still an argument to be made for Chi WaveChi Wave being replaced, so we're considering that as well, so discussion one way or another (or alternatives) is quite welcome.

The reason I would think most people use eott is that it is the highest dps AND it doesn't intrude on the already tight rotation for BoC, so there is no opportunity cost in using it.

Right; Eye of the TigerEye of the Tiger is currently taken primarily because it doesn't take up any GCDs. We're trying to open that up a bit so that you have room to take abilities like Chi WaveChi Wave and SpitfireSpitfire (or theoretically Chi BurstChi Burst), or Rushing Jade WindRushing Jade Wind, in your rotation.

The common Blackout Combo-driven rotation right now is, in a way, not GCD locked, because it spends a significant amount of its time off GCD, but in practice it feels more like GCD locked, because that time is in between every few GCDs with little empty half-GCDs, adding a stutter to your rotation that we're trying to clean up.

Awesome feedback so far, especially from those who are actively trying a variety of talent builds. That's the most valuable, especially when you consider swapping to the other side of the Blackout Combo / No Blackout Combo line that divides the community playstyles. :)

Next PTR build, we're going to try a 12sec base CD on Blackout StrikeBlackout Strike, to speed things up a bit baseline, and hopefully remove the ~1GCD of pause that has been mentioned by several people. (And in fact add a GCD of slush)

Enhancement Shamans

BoulderfistBoulderfist will become baseline. Blizzard also doesn't like endless chains of StormstrikeStormstrike

Blizzard LogoBlizzard (Source)

Thanks for all the feedback. There are a lot of issues being discussed here, but a few stand out as core rotational problems we'd like to address. There's not a specific final plan yet, so be warned there may be works in progress in upcoming PTR builds.

1) BoulderfistBoulderfist. During 7.1.5 iteration, we agreed with a lot of feedback that BoulderfistBoulderfist gave the most fun version of the basic rotation (as opposed to the spammable RockbiterRockbiter, or the slower BoulderfistBoulderfist we tried for a time on 7.1.5 PTR). Furthermore, a lot of the talent balancing and related issues on the spec are caused by flipping between the GCD-filled RockbiterRockbiter rotation and the charge-driven BoulderfistBoulderfist rotation.

We are planning to make BoulderfistBoulderfist baseline (possibly with the name RockbiterRockbiter). The choice would likely be to take a passive talent on L15 that leaves the gameplay identical to using BoulderfistBoulderfist now, or use WindsongWindsong/Hot HandHot Hand but still have a generator with a 6s recharge time.

2) TempestTempest and StormbringerStormbringer. Tempest has been a bit of a thorn in the side of Enhancement pacing throughout this expansion. A proc that has you press a major spender twice is already at risk of having that feast-or-famine feel. The talent making you press StormstrikeStormstrike three times in order to get it back on cooldown is an even bigger culprit. At every passing moment, you either don't get a proc, or you do get one and suddenly have to spend 3 GCDs and 80 Maelstrom to deal with it (not to mention that StormstrikeStormstrike has a reasonable chance of proccing StormbringerStormbringer yet again, especially as mastery increases). 

We're deciding how much of this we can or should unwind in a patch, but redesigning TempestTempest may be a somewhat surgical way to get at this problem. Namely, the problem of the button priority and resource usage being overrun by frequent (but not predictable) endless chain StormstrikeStormstrikes. We tend not to like totally reworking popular talents, but TempestTempest has no good way to gradually tune it down. And in any case, amplifying the difference caused by getting vs. not getting StormbringerStormbringer procs is a result we want to avoid.

Usual reminder that these two changes will likely have a significant impact on DPS tuning, that we'll evaluate when we decide the details of the designs.

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