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Starym

Initial 8.2: Rise of Azshara PTR Class Changes

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Here comes the first round of class changes for the 8.2 PTR. We're getting significant changes to Vengeance, Feral, Guardian, Beast Mastery, Outlaw and Protection Warriors coming next week, with almost all changes being buffs aside from the last two specs.

Check out more 8.2 previews, including the official one from the livestream, some of the other community and outside site ones like Taliesin & Evitel, Sloot (who actually mentioned some of the below changes), Forbes and more.

Blizzard LogoClass Changes (source)

We’ve been working on a suite of targeted changes that focus on improving gameplay for several specs. You’re going to see changes that are close to the following in the first build of the Rise of Azshara PTR (coming next week).

Demon Hunter

  • Vengeance
    • Demonic Wards Demonic Wards : damage reduction increased to 15% (was 10%).
    • Demonic Wards Demonic Wards: armor bonus increased to 100% (was 80%).
    • Demon Spikes Demon Spikes : armor reduced to 60% of Agility (was 85%).
      • Developers’ notes: More than other tanks, Vengeance is currently dealing with the problem of low mitigation when their active mitigation is down. These changes are a substantial increase to physical mitigation when Demon Spikes is down, and a neutral-to-very-slight increase when Demon Spikes is active. There is also some overall passive reduction to magic damage. Overall, Vengeance’s sustained damage taken will be lower, and the periods of vulnerability outside of Demon Spikes should be less dramatic.

Druid

  • Soothe Soothe , Remove Corruption Remove Corruption , Moonfire Moonfire , and Rebirth Rebirth are no longer castable in Cat or Bear form by default.

  • Feral Druids now have a visible passive learned at level 22 that allows Remove Corruption Remove Corruption and Soothe Soothe to be cast in Cat Form.

  • Guardian Druids now have a visible passive learned at level 10 that allows Soothe Soothe, Remove Corruption Remove Corruption, Moonfire Moonfire, and Rebirth Rebirth to be cast in Bear Form.

    • Developers’ notes: Guardian Druid is limited in its practical ability to use some utility abilities while tanking, and we’re loosening that restriction by allowing Remove Corruption in Bear Form. We’re also cleaning up Druid shapeshifting rules slightly: the use of magical-themed spells, in Feral forms, is allowed by passive upgrades given to Guardian and Feral specializations specifically. This represents their special mastery of their “home” form that allows for limited spellcasting, and from a gameplay perspective, this allows Feral/Guardian Druids to use spells in form where there is a strong practical need. At the same time, there are situations where there is no fantasy justification or gameplay need, and spellcasting might be more restricted. For example, non-Guardian Druids can no longer cast Moonfire in Bear Form.
  • Guardian

    • Ironfur Ironfur and Maul Maul now cost 40 Rage (was 45).
    • Mangle Mangle now generates 10 Rage (was 8).
      • Developers’ notes: Ironfur is intended to be maintainable with high uptime, up to 100%, and have some overlaps on top of that. Currently, depending on talent configuration, Druids may only be able to barely maintain full uptime on Ironfur. Making Ironfurs much more available should allow better control over timing and overlaps, as well as improving Guardian mitigation overall.
    • Shifting to Bear Form now gives 25 Rage (was 20).
      • Developer’s notes: It should now be much easier to get the first Ironfur activated promptly after engaging an enemy, due to the increased starting Rage and lower cost.
    • Mangle Mangle and Thrash Thrash direct damage increased by 15%.

Hunter

  • Beast Mastery
    • Barbed Shot Barbed Shot damage is now affected by Bestial Wrath Bestial Wrath .
    • Barbed Shot Barbed Shot damage reduced by 10%.
      • Developers’ notes: We are fixing a bug that caused Bestial Wrath to not affect Barbed Shot damage, and lowering the base damage of Barbed Shot to keep overall damage roughly unchanged.

Rogue

  • Outlaw
    • Keep Your Wits About You Keep Your Wits About You (Azerite Trait) now stacks once per instance of Blade Flurry Blade Flurry dealing damage (was once for every target Blade Flurry Blade Flurry hits). Each stack now provides 5% Sinister Strike Sinister Strike chance (was 2%).
      • Developers’ notes: In very large packs of enemies, especially in dungeons, Keep Your Wits About You provides much more damage than one copy of one Azerite Trait was intended to provide. With this change, you’ll still feel this trait accelerate as you build stacks, but the size of the group that you’re fighting won’t affect how much damage the trait is giving you. This will be a damage increase against two targets, and a damage reduction against 3 or more targets.

Warrior

  • Protection
    • Unstoppable Force Unstoppable Force Thunder Clap Thunder Clap damage reduced to 50% (was 100%).
      • Developers’ notes: Protection Warrior burst DPS with Avatar is extremely high for a tank. This talent was adding more damage than necessary, given that it also decreases Thunder Clap’s cooldown and synergizes well with certain Azerite traits.

We’ll update this post as necessary, especially as we develop PvP-specific tuning adjustments over the first few weeks of the PTR.

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4 hours ago, Ragingwolf said:

Literally just heard our Protection Warrior scream no in Discord >.>

I main prot warrior myself and its absolutely necessary to adjust TC dmg. But this will also target our single target dps, and thats just wrong. Yeah i know, some ppl believe tank dps doesnt matter, but in fact it does - at least in mythic +. It would be highly appreciated to buff Shield slam, it already hits like a wet noodle and would compensate this loss. 

To be honest: it would be much better to rework the whole dps-concept as prot warrior. 50% TC dmg feels strange. 

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The problem with Guardian Druid is not that it's too weak but that it's pretty boring. I think making Pulverize baseline again and bringing back the artifact ability would already encourage more people to play bear.

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On 4/13/2019 at 2:44 AM, Starym said:

Hunter

  • Beast Mastery
    • Barbed ShotBarbed Shot damage is now affected by Bestial WrathBestial Wrath .
    • Barbed ShotBarbed Shot damage reduced by 10%.
      • Developers’ notes: We are fixing a bug that caused Bestial Wrath to not affect Barbed Shot damage, and lowering the base damage of Barbed Shot to keep overall damage roughly unchanged.

Wat? I don't get it... If they are fixing a bug, Barbed Shot was not working as intended, meaning BS should be affected by BW as of now, which, apparently, it does not. Then they deliberately reduce the damage of BS across the board. Doesn't this equal to a nerf vis-à-vis the way it should be working right now? Unchanged indeed, but from a system that was not working as intended… I'm not saying, the change is wrong – I just don't get the logic…

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On ‎4‎/‎13‎/‎2019 at 4:59 AM, jinsu2301 said:

The problem with Guardian Druid is not that it's too weak but that it's pretty boring. I think making Pulverize baseline again and bringing back the artifact ability would already encourage more people to play bear.

I've played a lot of Guardian Druid this expansion, just like every other. It's got a good utility toolkit, strong defensive cooldowns and good baseline mitigation, but it does very low DPS except in specific advantageous situations. (I'm looking at you, oozes in King's Rest.) It's so bad that holding threat is a legitimate problem even outside of Skittish. And it didn't seem fair that a Paladin or a Monk could use their cleanse while a Druid couldn't, but frankly, Warriors are dominating MDI purely because their damage output is stupidly high and also very front-loaded. Guardian Druids have to ramp to do their full damage; no other tank has that issue, and it's the reason why I doubt people will be rerolling bear en masse in 8.2. But at least I won't have people wishing I was playing something else, if I'm better able to take a hit with the new changes and have a bit more front-loaded damage.

You'll recall that in Legion, the only way you took a Druid was if it had Luffa's Wrappings and stacked Thrash relics. Tank damage matters. So buffing Thrash and Mangle was definitely the right thing to do, and it may be enough to make them viable at least as a flavor choice. They have most of the utility of a Resto Druid, plus the very useful Incapacitating Roar, so we may see some Guard/MW or Guard/HPal comps. But I still see most people going back to the good old comfortable Blood DK/Resto Druid meme.

Edited by Tarazet
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