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Volunteer Guard Day & Blue Posts: Apr 28

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Volunteer Guard Day micro-holiday is here and Blizzard continues to discuss 7.2.5 Brewmaster Monk / Discipline Priest class changes.

Volunteer Guard Day

/Salute a guard to receive the Volunteer City GuardVolunteer City Guard buff. You will be periodically attacked by City Invaders. The buff persists through death. More details are included in our preview here.

Patch 7.2.5 Class Discussion

Class discussions are ongoing for Brewmaster Monks & Discipline Priest. If you've missed the previous round you can find it here.

Brewmaster Monk

Blizzard LogoBlizzard (Source)

Lots of great feedback here on the latest build so far. Thanks.

Latest thoughts:
SpitfireSpitfire - It's a fun playstyle option for people, but having both defensive (even without it being an increase to Hot BloodedHot Blooded, it's still more Elusive BrawlerElusive Brawler stacks) and offensive value (more Breath of FireBreath of Fires for damage), it's hard to fit it anywhere in the talent tree, and it complicates artifact trait values. We're going to just cut if for now (may return at some point in the future when it fits in better). Niuzao will return, and will simply deal more damage to make him competitive with the row.

Blackout ComboBlackout Combo - Yeah, the 2sec rotation is problematic. Some people like the frantic gameplay, but we think other talent combinations deliver on that better anyway. The main problems with it are that it invalidates a ton of other talent choices, actually *reduces* rotational choice because you just combo everything instead of having to choose what you combo, causes energy capping issues, is a massive buff to the talent potentially upsetting talent balance, and is too fast-paced without any other contribution. We're going to return it to 3sec, where you can pair it with other GCD-filling talents to create the frantic playstyle if you prefer, without causing the above issues.

Hot BloodedHot Blooded and Dragonfire BrewDragonfire Brew - Baseline, Hot BloodedHot Blooded is very strong. 1% DR per bronze trait is already on the extremely strong side. The Legendary chest was created with Hot BloodedHot Blooded in mind as its defensive benefit. But that gets a little out of hand when we added 4th points to Bronzes, and you min/max relics, increasing it to the massively-OP level of 7% DR for a legendary. Then the 7.2.5 changes also add more Elusive BrawlerElusive Brawler stacks to that. We're going to adjust these two traits in order to better balance trait and legendary values: Dragonfire BrewDragonfire Brew will also increase the duration of Breath of FireBreath of Fire's DoT by 100%, giving it defensive value. Hot BloodedHot Blooded will now be active the whole time, instead of ~half the time without the Chest, and so is changing to 1% DR per point to compensate.

EDIT: Overall Tuning - As always, overall tuning happens late in the process. Don't worry about overall power level of Brewmasters when giving feedback on these changes.

Thanks all!

I have a feeling there's a disconnect between how much the monk community value those elusive brawler stack and how the Developers value them.

First off, as said many times, dodge doesn't do anything VS magic damage or VS any kind of boss threatening ability as they are undodgeable even if physical (ex: spellblade annihilate).

From a mythic raider point of view, those dodge stacks hardly do anything, as bosses auto-attack (the only thing that's dodgeable) are the least threatening form of damage we have to face.

From a M+ dungeon point of view, those stack comes and go so fast nobody will notice the buff... having 100% dodge chance for 1 auto-attack out of the 5+ weak mob training you hardly change anything... 

It's also one of the reason people hardly, if ever, use blackout combo to empower purify.

We value it based upon its actual real world value, not a theoretical worst case that doesn't actually exist. You should too.

Yes, Elusive BrawlerElusive Brawler does nothing against Magic/undodgeable damage. However, apart from some extremely niche situations like Star Auger, it's not that piercing damage alone that kills you; it's the combination of those and other damage that is dodgeable. Nowhere is this more true than on Brewmasters, where there is no spike damage, only smoothed total damage (which is mostly auto attack damage). Mastery drastically reduces the total damage you take, which is the only thing scary to a Brewmaster anyway.

Discipline Priest

Blizzard LogoBlizzard (Source)

Thanks for all the feedback. As I mentioned last week, there was a lot of rapid iteration going on so it was hard to give any detailed updates. This build is a more complete set of changes that seems to be going in a good direction, though there are still some issues to work out.

--Talent balancing. In particular, EvangelismEvangelism is an idea we like, but finding serious competition for it as a raid talent might be hard. It probably needs to be against heavier hitters like Power InfusionPower Infusion (especially if that helps it be less of a one-note cooldown stacking build). There will likely be further iteration on talent arrangement to better accommodate the new additions.

--Mana. The spell whose cost is most important for balance purposes is PleaPlea, because it is now the most efficient way to convert excess mana into AtonementAtonements. We reduced the cost so it would make more sense when compared against Shadow MendShadow Mend and RadianceRadiance, but have to keep an eye on whether that leaves mana as a reasonable limiter on how much AtonementAtonement you can spread over the course of an encounter.

--Overall AtonementAtonement count. The changes in the last build helped fix a lot of mechanical issues, but also added a lot of raw power to the spec, particularly in terms of AtonementAtonement spread/uptime. And particularly EvangelismEvangelism returns a lot of the burst-AtonementAtonement coverage that currently dominates Disc raiding. That's not necessarily a problem if everything else about the spec is working well, and it's good to continue having a bit of a niche that Disc is used to in Legion. But as discussed in my first post, if it's as easy to blanket the raid as it is on live, that limits the spec somewhat. 

While this is something we'll monitor throughout PTR, especially with more internal and external raid testing, there is definitely a worry that in order to balance the spec at this point, the AtonementAtonement transfer % would have to go down, which is the opposite of the stated goal. We don't want to be in that position at the end of PTR when it's harder to make other changes.

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