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This is just a quick note regarding the impending hunter changes coming this Tuesday.
As far as I can tell, the goals you developers have for the hotfixes on Tuesday are:
Maintain the PvE dps of marks, while increasing the overall dps of the other two specs
I think i can speak for the vast majority of hunters in agreeing with these goals -- the implementation however could use some work.
Aimed shot changes:
For starters, the focus efficiency of aimed shot barely beats that of our focus dump against plate classes, except when they are above 80% health. While aimed shot has obvious merits against the lower armor classes, a flat damage nerf, especially of the caliber that is planned, is expected to relegate aimed shot to a proc-only cast, as 50 focus and a 2.9second cast for essentially no damage gain over rocking out two arcane shots just doesn't make any sense.
I don't believe it is out of line to try and keep aimed shot as a risk/reward spell, in the sense that being able to land one should yield a dps and burst increase, while risking lost dps during the cast. A decent analogy were your plans for buffing frostbolt for mages, attempting to give them some benefit for opening up their tree to interrupts, instead of just spamming ice lance (arcane shot)
Suggestions: Maintain the damage nerf, Reduce cast time and focus cost (2.4cast and 30focus, maybe?) and change Master Marksman to 100% proc chance for Ready...Set...Aim!
Aspect of the Hawk changes:
Oh how quickly you forget about our good friend, aspect of the monkey. If i'm not mistaken, Aspect of the Dragonhawk was created to alleviate aspect dancing. With this planned 1400 AP buff to AotH, hunters will be severely punished for not aspect dancing between fox and hawk. My experience with steady shot in pvp is about 90% of them being cast while moving, which requires AotF, and outside of that, i want AotH on for EVERY other shot i cast. This can literally lead to changing aspects every other shot in certain situations.
NOBODY thinks this is a good mechanic. Its not fun or skill intensive.
By buffing the AP on AotH, you condone and exacerbate one of the most annoying mechanics this class has.
Solutions (Pick one!)
1) Combine AotH and AotF. Aspect of the Walrus. We don't care what you name it. Having aspects with clearly defined roles (Damage, Mobility, Utility) is a good concept. Having multiple aspects that must be constantly switched between for the same role is not.
2) Recode Aspects to work like stances, so they can be efficiently macro'd to shots. (e.g. they don't recast over and over again) This is far and away a worse choice than option #1, but anything is better than the planned implementation.
Think it over please.
Edited by Catscratchez on 2/20/2011 11:52 PM PST
The problem wasn't necessarily Aimed Shot, I think its more that you could instantly follow it up with a chimera shot combo which could put quite a dent in a player's health bar. Of course after that its a good 5-10 seconds of spamming steady shot for weak damage, but that initial burst was understandably a bit too high.
aimed never deserved to be nerfed. even for pvp reasons.1. Focus is an unlimited resource. You just have to regenerate it manually. I don't get why the hell Hunters haven't learned this already.
2. When a mage runs out of mana and Evoke and Managem arent up, he's useless. Arcane Mages can only get mega AB crits by using all of their mana at once. Arcane is doing very poorly overall right now because they OOM too fast.
3. Even with all of its downsides, Aimed was doing too damn much damage in PvE, where it was replacing the focus dump that was meant to be used.
4. Aspect dancing isn't hard, it costs you NOTHING, and you can do it off the GCD. At least you aren't a warrior.
Edited by Strykraishou on 2/20/2011 11:52 PM PST
Personally I'm not in favor of any MM design that encourages hardcasting of aimed shot unless they fix aimed shot so that it doesn't block or reset autoshot. MM as a spec has 2 bonuses, one which increases our autoshot damage, and one which gives us proc damage based on how frequently we shoot. Neither of these bonuses are compatible with hardcasting aimed shot.
I'm not particularly fond of putting so many eggs in the hawk basket myself, since aspect switching is kind of an obnoxious mechanic, but I definitely think changes to make aimed shot not desirable to hardcast except in special circumstances (like an opener) make sense (plus it's fairly obvious the current aimed formula is somewhat bugged). I would like to see MM get more use out of aimed shot, possibly from changing the proc mechanism so the proc occurs more often, but the current implementation is definitely bad and needed fixing.
it uses HALF the focus bar, and has a long cast time as well. So it's ok for arcane mages allowed to free cast AB to do lots of damage, but not a hunter's aimed shot? Of which they can do TWO before using all their focus up?
You should probably do one of the billion of things that can prevent an Arcane Mage from casting. Can I counterspell aimed shot now? If I stun you for two seconds does your focus reset to 0? Apples and Oranges, friend.
I'm not super happy with the way they decided to do it, but I didn't want to wait for a major patch either. I just wish they would buff SS damage.
Aimed Shot should become a proc-only skill. It should also be randomly proc'ed by Cobra or Aimed shots (with an internal cooldown of 5-7 seconds).
Stacking Steady Shots = Poor design
Hardcasting Aimed Shot = Poor design
Making MM flow = Good design similar to what other classes already have.
EDIT: If you have ever played a DK or Mage then you know what I mean by "flow". Your procs seamlessly flow with whatever rotation/routine you decide to use and are therefore useful and possible in almost any situation. For hunters, we have to force our playstyle to meet specific criteria in order to generate procs. This is very, very, very poorly designed.
Edited by Azaghal on 2/21/2011 10:05 AM PST
And that would have only benefited one spec and the other 2 specs needed more love then MM
I think the most important question regarding aimed shot is this:
Is the current live formula of aimed shot using 144.8% RAP scaling correct? Because before the aimed shot buff it had a 72.4% RAP scaling coefficient, and it looks like someone just multiplied the whole formula by 2.
Its probably a good idea to fix the coefficients before actually nerfing the ability if it is indeed bugged and getting twice the benefit from attack power as intended.
Aimed apparently is calculated as [(100% wpn + 72.4% RAP + 776) * 2]. If you nerf it down to (200% wpn + 72.4% RAP + 776), then it's just underpowered.
It's pretty clear that the original 4.0 design of aimed was to make the cast time and focus cost prohibitive enough that it was only used as a proc or opener. The trouble with aimed in the past was that it was only barely worth using even as a proc because it was so weak, and it was so slow to cast that it was pretty terrible as an opener. I can only assume this is why they made the changes they did in 4.0.6. I don't think the goal was to get us to hardcast aimed in combat- it was to make it a better opener and to make it a higher priority to use when procced.
The formula really needs to be adjusted back to more appropriate scaling (which it might be in the hotfix but we don't know). Having any shot scale so heavily off of RAP is ridiculously hard to balance. Having that on top of a high weapon damage scaling makes it even worse. MM already has the best scaling of any hunter spec and if they don't fix the scaling of aimed it's going to to get much more problematic as gear improves.
According to my quick math- fixing the multiplier to only apply to the weapon damage portion as it does in other shots and using the 160% weapon damage brings aimed shot down enough to still make it worth hardcasting during careful aim but not the rest of the fight. I haven't run the numbers with higher gear though, and the difference between full hardcast and careful aim hardcast was pretty small, so it might still be worth hardcasting full time at higher gear levels.
2 Worgen Warlock
How would it be good as an opener but not as a focus dump? That doesn't make sense. And they wouldn't have lowered the cast time if they didn't want you to hard cast it. If they wanted it proc only they would have made it proc only or with a cooldown that reset with Master Marksman, but they didn't.
How are you so wrong?
Edited by Ohbeta on 2/21/2011 11:20 AM PST
We actually don't know yet if it buffs aimed shot because what's posted in the hotfixes isn't entirely clear, so we're not sure what the new mechanics will be. Once we see how they implemented the change, we'll have a much better idea of the result.
By opener I mean when you're pulling a target or breaking one out of CC. If you're not in combat yet, the cast time doesn't factor in as much to your decisionmaking process- so it's just about damage value for your focus expenditure. Also, right now when factoring in the value of aimed shot you have to take into account the lost autoshots from while you're casting it, which again don't really come into play when using it as an opener. As others have pointed out, until you're high enough level to get access to the proc talent, aimed shot is relatively useless, unless it does enough damage to be worth using as an opener.
The cast time still matters, since if it takes forever to cast you're less likely to bother using it as an opener, but as long as it's not super long and the shot does good damage it can be a good opener without being great for general hardcasting.
If they really wanted us hardcasting aimed midcombat, they'd have addressed the issue with suppressing autoshot in addition to shortening the cast time.
It's pretty freaking explicit. You know the formula for aimed shot (which someone got wrong in this thread anyway). Plug in the numbers. Success.
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