While there are currently solid build options for monks both in 1.0.4 and 1.0.5, and while top-tiered monks using very specific builds can achieve respectable damage, the class isn’t yet where we want it to be. We’re definitely aware of your concerns, and we agree that additional improvements should be made, especially with regards to play style options, build diversity, and the performance and budget of monk resources. We feel that the monk has the most potential for improvement, and we have plans to make more changes to the monk after 1.0.5. The sort of changes we’d like to make are not simple number tweaks, though.
Hi V. Thank you for the update. I can't imagine how tough it must be to be caught in the middle. Addressing this comment, I think Monks understand that more work is needed and would welcome that, however, the defense reduction is currently being pitched without anything to balance that out as a positive. In other words, it has the feeling of kicking someone who's already down. Are these aforementioned changes planned for 1.0.5? If not, rather than hurting the overall playability of the class in 1.0.5 have the devs considered reducing the size of the nerf during the 1.0.5 release cycle in order to keep the class viable? It could potentially create a bubble period where Monks were seen to have a defensive advantage (this could be argued) but without PvP, would that be negative? Farming would be no more efficient since DPS is still not stellar-enough to 'faceroll.'
Alternately, are the planned One With Everything and playstyle changes significant enough to disrupt current monks? To be more straightforward (and this is a sincere question), are the defensive losses meant to be a signal to the player base to step away from the Monks, for the time being, while they are being reworked into a new-class with new gearing and a new playstyle (a sort of player reset)? I can understand why, from a community management perspective, this would be ideal and, if that is indeed the message (eg, "We know they need work, just don't use them right now"), then I think that would be a simpler message to digest than the negative perception achieved by reducing survivability.
Ultimately, we want to make monks more engaging to play and really immerse players in what it would feel like to be a fast-punching martial arts master. We have a number of ideas on how to accomplish that for the future, and we want to provide improved passives, particularly passives that can be used for a more offensively-minded monk. I also mentioned two other possible changes we’re considering in[url="http://us.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/6794319883#7"] my previous post[/url], but those certainly aren’t the only changes we’re looking into. They address another area we feel could use improvement, and that’s giving players some additional, more active play style options.
We agree with that too! As I've said in my other post, [url="http://us.battle.net/d3/en/forum/topic/6794830289"], this is all fantastic but the survivability options really do need to be addressed either through heal scaling + vitality (eg, taking 30k post-mitigated hits every other second but being able heal those sorts of hits with limited cooldown), or re-introducing armor or damage % reductions that can deal with the issues posted by AoE / reflect damage.
We have more improvements planned and they’re still only in the discussion phase, so we’re not really in a place right now to talk about them in much detail, but we’re actively working towards solutions to address many key concerns.
I think I speak for many when I say, 'Hurray! We can't wait! No really, I mean it, we cannot wait!' ;-)
More seriously, it's good to hear that more changes are planned and your second post is appreciated. If you can't share the 'what' can you share something else? The 'how' (eg, methodology) and the 'when' would both be great places to start. A few promises in either would go a long way with the playerbase.
If a 1.0.4 monk finds himself/herself non-viable in 1.0.5 it would be unwise to re-gear since looming changes to One with Everything (not to mentioned playstyle changes) put all significant monk investments at risk of being obsolete in a near-timeframe. At the very least, knowing when the class will be fixed might incentivise the player to return on that date when they might not otherwise do-so.
All in all, we're happy and hungry for change, but it feels a bit like we're just not important enough to keep viable during a production period or (at worst) being passively discouraged. Anything you can do address these concerns would be appreciated.