Why is PvE Class Balancing so painfully slow?

I don't understand why changes take FOREVER to test let alone implement when certain specs/classes are clearly getting the shaft in PvE. I know the arguements about PvP balance and all of that, but wasn't the whole point of 1st mastery and now simplified talent trees to make balancing classes/specs as easy as just "pulling certain levers"?

Some classes and specs are left in the dust on dps charts and yet nothing changes. Is it really that hard to put a little more damage into a class to bring it up to par? I mean everyone who raids knows that certain specs are terribley behind others and yet no changes come and even more frustrating they aren't even tested on the PTR to see if it helps? What's up?

PULL THE DAMN LEVERS ALREADY!!!!

It really shouldn't take a year to figure out how to give class X 5% more damage to bring it in line with other classes. Is this really so much to ask?
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Because WoW is too big and has too many moving parts now, as is Blizzard. This tanker doesn't turn on a dime anymore.

They are a victim of their own success. They cannot do things as nimbly as smaller companies and MMOs can.
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90 Night Elf Druid
6065
Yeah, I hear your pain!! I don't know why this build had to change so much in regards to talent trees, rotations and glyphs. It takes major time to learn how to set up a toon for maximum damage and then it all changes. Why not spend the time in balancing the characters instead. I haven't even wanted to play because I lost so much ground in the last upgrade. Change for change's sake is never good. Just add the levels and let us use the skills, talents and rotations we've come to know and love!!

Just some thoughts!!

Jorrel
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90 Blood Elf Paladin
19970
Blizzard plays it very conservative with big changes, and I hate it. It's not for reasons of difficulty of balance, as they themselves have stated in major posts by devs, it's just because they don't want to scare people with fast change. They hold off big changes for major patches or even whole expansions, just out of fear of confusing the hoi paloi.
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90 Undead Monk
4710
You're right about the "levers". Blizzard created passives for each individual spec that they could tweak to adjust the balancing for that spec. This way they can avoid making changes that screw up your rotation or change the flow of any class and just affect the baseline output (healing or damage).

The problem is PVP vs PVP balancing. They need separate levers for each. For example, on raidbots you can see that Frost Mages, Beast Mastery Hunters, and Arms Warriors are actually among the lowest in PVE damage. These specs are already OP in arena, they can't buff their levers without making a bunch EZ R1 Gladiators.

I think the solution will be the implement separate levers for PVE and PVP. The question is how to do that.

We could change it so that PvP Power scaling is different for each spec. So for example, buff Arms damage by 10% through their lever ("Seasoned Soldier" passive) and then nerf their PvP Power scaling by 10% to compensate.
Edited by Moozh on 11/16/2012 12:39 PM PST
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90 Troll Hunter
11370
This game moves slowly. They need 2-3 months to figure out which classes are too low, and then another 2-3 months to figure out how to buff them.

I attribute most of this to Blizzard's competent developer staff being sent to work on other assets than WoW.
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90 Human Priest
6935
11/16/2012 11:50 AMPosted by Contritus
Blizzard plays it very conservative with big changes, and I hate it. It's not for reasons of difficulty of balance, as they themselves have stated in major posts by devs, it's just because they don't want to scare people with fast change. They hold off big changes for major patches or even whole expansions, just out of fear of confusing the hoi paloi.


Not really true. They just have a bad history of either not doing enough/anything or massively overdoing it. For some reason they can't seem to find any sort of happy medium when swinging the nerf bat.
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90 Troll Hunter
14735
11/16/2012 11:50 AMPosted by Contritus
Blizzard plays it very conservative with big changes, and I hate it.

HA!!

Well...I'll give you that they generally do take their time. But there are several instances of the nerf bat swinging extremely heavily, and via hot fixes.

The problem is PVP vs PVP balancing. They need separate levers for each. For example, on raidbots you can see that Frost Mages, Beast Mastery Hunters, and Arms Warriors are actually among the lowest in PVE damage. These specs are already OP in arena, they can't buff their levers without making a bunch EZ R1 Gladiators.

BMs OP-ness came from a massive bug in Arena (fixed via hot-fix), and burst stacking (several hot-fixes to adjust, plus a pending change).

Already, BM is not performing well, and 5.1 is just putting in a final nail. Yet, no PVE tweakage (granted, they would need to tweak MM and SV as well, because all three specs are actually quite similar to each other, with MM lagging more than the other 2)
Edited by Verdash on 11/16/2012 3:01 PM PST
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90 Orc Warlock
9130
11/16/2012 11:40 AMPosted by Sanctifiêd
ret was terrible until firelands, arguably dragon soul. took FOREVER for our mastery to be fixed.

I tore it up as ret in t11, not sure what your problem was.
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90 Undead Warlock
6970
11/16/2012 11:50 AMPosted by Contritus
Blizzard plays it very conservative with big changes, and I hate it. It's not for reasons of difficulty of balance, as they themselves have stated in major posts by devs, it's just because they don't want to scare people with fast change. They hold off big changes for major patches or even whole expansions, just out of fear of confusing the hoi paloi.


One could also take the cynical view that fixing stuff is like, work. And work sucks. Let's not do too much of that, it isn't fun.

Being less cynical, they've managed to reduce the moving parts they have to fix, but it's still a LOT of moving parts.

What I don't like is releasing major abilities that haven't been properly tested. For example. Demon gate for instance has several amusing edge cases that they aren't handling properly. Aside from the gate being near useless, why release something that untested?

Why create new broken wheels, when you can fix some of the old broken ones first?
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90 Blood Elf Paladin
5990
Moving parts or not. It needs to even out. I understand situation to situation, why certain DPS would be higher than others. But Its Really unfortunate when certain classes ( One in particular that starts with a "P") wont even be considered for a damage role in a raid because of how low the output is.

I hate having to struggle so heavily, even with a Great iLvL, to even stay above tanks with damage output. It is Not right. The range between the lowest and the highest is too far.

I would like someone to tell me that Retribution Paladins do NOT suck as of this moment. I would also like someone to tell me that if putting together a 10 Man Raid, out of all Melee DPS, that paladins would even be considered.
Edited by Cerarco on 11/17/2012 12:03 AM PST
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85 Worgen Druid
5715
11/16/2012 11:58 PMPosted by Bándet
s as the top spec for Hunters to dps as.


BM: among the lowest in pve damage
BM: Sims as the top spec for Hunters to dps as.

Yup.. Pretty much screwed.

I always wondered why BM's were LOLZERGFACEROLL in PvP 5.x but rock the bottom of the meters in PvE. Perhaps they need to look at their stackable CD's and give them much higher sustained.
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90 Night Elf Death Knight
20555
yeah ive always felt a little sorry for hunters. they have always basically been on a knife edge of balance for pve/pvp. its why ive never wanted to main one.

you look at BM at launch of pandaland, and they were freaking retardedly OP. yet in pve, meh.

same with wotlk when it shipped, double TBW because of readiness, with the glyph that extended its duration and BM was absolutely atrocious. then it got hit with the nerf hammer soooo freaking hard, it wasnt usable again until midway through cata.

blizz have historically been overzealous with there nerfs, thus why during a lot of BC and wotlk blizz were known as " knee jerk " nerfing everything. they couldnt do it in small parts, they just gutted classes/specs entirely. they wouldnt just fix a single problem, they would tear down entire specs to uselessness.

it happened to DKs at the start of wotlk ( because lets face it, S5 was a joke, the internal testing from blizzard failed, and the player feedback from wotlk beta was entirely ignored ). DKs shipped atrociously broken, either as a marketing scheme to drum up attention to draw back players, or if they were that inept at balance in the first place. we will never really know. then DKs spent basically 3/4 of wotlk licking there wounds. hell frost only became playable again after ICC came out ( frost DKs were gutted into nothingness during ulduar ). blizz just ripped frost apart, destroyed glyphs, destroyed abilities, bugs galore, pestilence wasnt working. they just kneejerk nerfed into oblivion.

these days though, it is harder to balance because of fundamental changes to the game and how specs work. instead of small percentage based nerfs to modifiers, to tone down some specs, blizz have to be very careful because of pvp/pve balance. as of right now though, a lot of the problems is boss encounter mechanics shutting some specs out, or pvp balance holding specs back.

we can only sit back and watch.
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40 Dwarf Shaman
8075
This is supposed to be what Mastery was going to solve. It was repeatedly referred to as the dial they could turn if a spec needed a little more performance (or a little less), and would finally put a stop to players having to wait months or an entire tier of content for their characters to be adjusted.

In the end it never came to pass and it became just another stat on gear. I wish they would have followed through on it.
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This is supposed to be what Mastery was going to solve. It was repeatedly referred to as the dial they could turn if a spec needed a little more performance (or a little less), and would finally put a stop to players having to wait months or an entire tier of content for their characters to be adjusted.

In the end it never came to pass and it became just another stat on gear. I wish they would have followed through on it.


Indeed. At this point, it is looking a like a junk stat and if you wanted to simplify the game and lessen the number of moving parts, removing mastery would be a good place to start. It's redundant. It adds nothing special to the game and in fact makes it harder to balance, not less.
Edited by Deerde on 11/17/2012 4:07 AM PST
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90 Night Elf Druid
4815
you think pve is bad? you guys are blizz favorite child. pvpers spend 9 month seasons praying a single broken mechanic that is dominating the entire scene will be fixed.... plus you get dragons.
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90 Human Mage
IQ
8250
11/17/2012 03:14 AMPosted by Anvilarse
This is supposed to be what Mastery was going to solve. It was repeatedly referred to as the dial they could turn if a spec needed a little more performance (or a little less), and would finally put a stop to players having to wait months or an entire tier of content for their characters to be adjusted.


This. Everyone seems to have forgotten this or started playing after it was implemented. No reason these differences can not be hot fixed in. Waiting for weeks or months for a patch is just silly. Do not bring up "the players did not like the roller coaster ride" crap. The only players who did not like it were the specs getting nerfed. No one who had low numbers complained about being buffed. If it is a problem then patch in the nerfs, but dont wait to buff the other specs that are underperforming.

Turn your little dial, Bam, BM, Arcane and anyone else who needs fixing is fixed.
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90 Orc Shaman
13750
This is supposed to be what Mastery was going to solve. It was repeatedly referred to as the dial they could turn if a spec needed a little more performance (or a little less), and would finally put a stop to players having to wait months or an entire tier of content for their characters to be adjusted.

In the end it never came to pass and it became just another stat on gear. I wish they would have followed through on it.


Indeed. At this point, it is looking a like a junk stat and if you wanted to simplify the game and lessen the number of moving parts, removing mastery would be a good place to start. It's redundant. It adds nothing special to the game and in fact makes it harder to balance, not less.


Might be a junk stat for Mages, but that doesn't mean it's a junk stat overall.
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