Blizzard & The Fate of the Shaman Developers

Shaman
Hi, the goal of this post is to bring awareness to the complete disconnect between the shaman player base, data points, and shaman developers.

As everyone probably knows by now, elemental is not great, good, average, nor below average - it is bottom tier. The above statement is not an opinion and is not up for debate. No matter how the parses are organized from world of logs, elemental competes for the worst DPS in game. Filtering it for end game where it should be somewhat balanced, elemental possesses the third worst overall DPS spec, only failing to outcompete the PvP focused specs (sub and frost mage) for last (https://www.warcraftlogs.com/statistics/10/#; filtered for 75th percentile in Emerald Nightmare to give best telling data).

Now this is not alarming for any of us - we have tested the elemental spec in beta and have brought up the issues to the developers. Aside from testing performance, simcrafts eluded to the notion that we may be significantly underperforming when raids arrive. At ilvl840 preraid, we were simmed to be 30% (very, very, big number) below the top 5 DPS specs. The gap will not be (and was not) compensated for in raids (actually increase) because our motility is poor. Who this is surprising for (which is the issue), is the shaman "team".

Now if we did our job in beta and pre-raid to raise issues and give feedback, why are we in such a bad state now? The answer is unfortunately the shaman developer team. In their current state, they are not fit to govern the class any longer.

The current Developer team has failed us by:
-Refusing to acknowledge severe issues within the spec
-Refusing to communicate with the shaman player base
-Failure to run extensive personal testing as elemental to ensure playability given content release
-Failure at checking work to make sure their changes are legitimate (fun fact: we were deemed overtuned in beta and nerfed)
-Failure to analyze data from external and internal sources to ensure the class is balanced given larger sample sizes and use such data to adjust abilities accordingly.

Before I'd want to see elemental shamans buffed, I would like Blizzard to sit down with the shaman team and communicate to them clear expectations in regards to not only failure-checking their job, but to communicate and take the shaman player base feedback a little more seriously. There isn't much excuse to have such big disparities between other specializations when most shaman issues were known and publicized. Remember, this is not the first instance where elemental was given choppy supervision and allocated resources.
0/10 would not read again
read
They've said some class tuning is coming next week, let's wait for that before we make anymore of these posts.
It is very interesting to note that not only did Blizzard nod to the fact that they ruined elemental shaman with multistrike stacking - but said they would address the issue during Legion as well. It is also interesting to note that six out of eight of our legendaries come with mastery. The development team clearly do not understand how elemental shaman work. Note any trends in all the mail drops? Meant for every other wearer, but us. I have three elemental shaman on three different servers - I refuse to change because I have strong sense of loyalty - so it is not as though I am new to the class, but c'mon folks. We can blow up a dungeon boss, but as far as raiding is concerned we are not viable.
the state of pvp besides the healing spec is laughable. Elemental should not just be a free kill to melee class. Its not fun to pvp and the only dmg you do comes from a dot you spam because you cant cast spells in this game anymore. Its almost not worth it to continue.

I followed this spec and class on the beta forums the problems never did get answers bugs went with launch and nerfs to the class without testing and the result is this undertuned /lol class that makes me want to retire from wow for good. /rant
09/23/2016 05:11 PMPosted by Lystaera
It is very interesting to note that not only did Blizzard nod to the fact that they ruined elemental shaman with multistrike stacking - but said they would address the issue during Legion as well. It is also interesting to note that six out of eight of our legendaries come with mastery. The development team clearly do not understand how elemental shaman work. Note any trends in all the mail drops? Meant for every other wearer, but us. I have three elemental shaman on three different servers - I refuse to change because I have strong sense of loyalty - so it is not as though I am new to the class, but c'mon folks. We can blow up a dungeon boss, but as far as raiding is concerned we are not viable.


The gear even sucks for resto shaman. Haste on like everything. Its deperssing when i have items with like 1k crit, 300-500 mastery and then +20ilvl items drop that is never an upgrade when I lose that much crit or mastery. Every trinket drop or any world quest upgrade over 825 has been mostly haste too. I dont mind some filler gear and items but EVERYTHING is turning out to have haste on it and not even a little bit, just a crapload of useless haste.

Also for Ele, when I played with it after changes it was so different I didnt even decide to use it to level for Legion. Just stayed resto and grabbed me some damaging proc trinkets because it was too weird.

Check out the 7.1 changes at least because earthquake is changing back to how it was before and no totem earthquake. I dont ele much but damn did it feel weird and clunky when I messed around with it after changes.
Do the developers actually play this class ?
There are several classes that are in the same boat (mostly casters)
Seems like all the developers play melee classes since they seem to all be OP (any class with a tank spec is way OP at this point)
This never should have made it to this point ----- Supposedly they were going to make adjusting PvE and PvP separately so that they wouldn't have to balance one at the expense of the other or did that become one of those "we forgot" things too?
I dont know why u guys are complaining, the patch that came out today buffed Ele damage as well as sustainable dps from enhancement.

EDIT: with additional maeslstrom generation from lightning bolt, as well as overall damage increase to lightning bolt, chainlighting, ele is gonna wreck !@#$.

Also, glad to see demon huntards got nerfed LOL

Quote from Blizzard

Elemental
Mastery effects increased by 12.5%.
Chain Lightning Maelstrom generation increased to 6.
Lightning Bolt (Elemental) damage increased by 23%.
Chain Lightning (Elemental) damage increased by 23%.
Lava Burst damage increased by 5%.
Storm Elemental (Talent)’s Call Lightning and Wind Gust damage increased by 20%.

Enhancement
Fixed a bug that gave offhand special attacks a 100% chance to activate Windfury while Doom Winds was active.
Windfury activation chance increased to 20%.
Note: We’re fixing a bug that added multiple extra Windfury procs to each activation of Doom Winds, but adding some Windfury procs back by increasing the baseline activation chance. This should also improve Maelstrom generation outside of Doom Winds.
I think the point is the buffs shouldn't have been needed. The problems were pointed out ages ago and yet here we are, effectively dead last in damage. And this is the 2nd expansion in a row where this has happened. When you add in the fact that Bink and others have given up on the spec Blizzard needs to take notice. Instead all we get is silence. Yes damage can be buffed but with this record of failure there needs to be some soul searching on the part of whoever is in charge of class design at Blizzard on why these things keep happening and how they can be prevented in the future. It's a bit of a tired question but one has to honestly wonder if the designers really do play elemental at all or is it the spec that gets assigned to whoever missed the meeting the day they were handing out assignments.
09/23/2016 08:15 PMPosted by Tomasedison
I dont know why u guys are complaining, the patch that came out today buffed Ele damage as well as sustainable dps from enhancement.


Those go into effect with the server reset next Tuesday, buffs are not currently live.
The buffs will defiantly make elemental more playable, but the glaring mobility issue is still there.

The massive problem of fire elemental exists also. that is 1 button press does 4M+ damage.

Not to mention these changes makes most under performing talents even worse.
It's just a small increase to our dps, it isn't going to magically solve our problems.
09/23/2016 08:15 PMPosted by Tomasedison
Elemental
Mastery effects increased by 12.5%.
Chain Lightning Maelstrom generation increased to 6.
Lightning Bolt (Elemental) damage increased by 23%.
Chain Lightning (Elemental) damage increased by 23%.
Lava Burst damage increased by 5%.
Storm Elemental (Talent)’s Call Lightning and Wind Gust damage increased by 20%.

Enhancement
Fixed a bug that gave offhand special attacks a 100% chance to activate Windfury while Doom Winds was active.
Windfury activation chance increased to 20%.
Note: We’re fixing a bug that added multiple extra Windfury procs to each activation of Doom Winds, but adding some Windfury procs back by increasing the baseline activation chance. This should also improve Maelstrom generation outside of Doom Winds.


i see your shammy buffs and raise you some lock buffs!

Warlock

Affliction
Drain Life damage increased by 10%
Drain Soul damage increased by 10%
Corruption damage increased by 10%
Agony damage increased by 5%
Unstable Affliction damage increased by 15%
Seed of Corruption damage increased by 15%
Siphon Life (Talent) damage increased by 10%
Haunt (Talent) damage increased by 15%
Phantom Singularity (Talent) damage increased by 15%

Demonology
Hand of Gul’dan impact damage increased by 20%
Demonwrath damage increased by 15%
Shadowbolt damage increased by 10%
Doom damage increased by 10%
Wild Imps damage increased by 10%
Dreadstalker attack power increased by 10%
Felguard attack power increased by 10%
Doomguard (Demonology)’s Doom Bolt damage increased by 18%
Demonbolt (Talent) damage increased by 10%
Implosion (Talent) damage increased by 15%
Shadowflame (Talent) damage increased by 10%
Darkglare (Talent) damage increased by 10%

Destruction
Chaos Bolt damage increased by 11%
Incinerate damage increased by 11%
Immolate damage increased by 11%
Conflagrate damage increased by 11%
Rain of Fire damage increased by 11%, and cast time removed
Cataclysm (Talent) damage increased by 11%
Channel Demonfire (Talent) damage increased by 11%
Yes, we shouldn't be focused on buffing the output damage of elemental immediately. The prime issues come down to mobility and sustain. Since LB will never be castable while moving again, I'd like to see its duration shortened. A 2 sec cast that 33% of the time does 50k damage is poorly designed. I know the devs are afraid to buff our damage cause of our passive 250% crit damage (mastery amplifies single casts too), so either "get brave" or just remove tha passive for the sake of balance. A 1.5 baseline LB cast would help us build more maelstrom, semi-less hindered by movement and lead to a higher damage output without severely altering raw numbers.

We still have major quality of life issues too

-Flame shock consumes 20 maelstrom while it should function as a way to restore maelstrom (this makes target switching not only cost a GCD to begin DPS, but takes away our resources that influence our damage output).

- Stormkeeper is on the GCD (just interrupts the flow of our rotation. It doesn't do anything save for the rank 19 talent to summon a stormkeeper (which has its own issues....). I got the impression that the Developers put it on the GCD to give us something to press while moving....very annoying. Personally i'd like to see stormkeeper make the next 3 lightning bolts castable while moving.

-Fire elemental: Just remove it. So much damage from a pet. Rebuild it all into lightning bolt and earth shock please. It's ok to make mistakes, relying on a single talent makes me want to surrender to madness.

-Earth shock: It's just very uneventful. The damage is laughable while it doesn't crit. The time invested to simply cast this spell is ridiculous for its output. If certain melee classes had this spell, casting a non-crit version would actually be a DPS loss. Think about that.

Side note: I'd like Ascendance to be baseline as well. That would be a strong buff to elemental shamans without the need to heavily change ratios of our spells.
I'd like to be a voice saying that I'm actually having a lot of fun mechanically with elemental, aside from stormkeeper being on the global cooldown. The numbers are bad, but aside from that Legion definitely feels like an improvement over WoD, especially with the way shocks no longer share cooldowns.

I could see Flame Shock being improved by having its duration increased by the amount of maelstrom you have but not consuming it... But I think it's supposed to be a way to make shamans decide between multidotting and earthquake.
I think it might be time to consider that secretly Blizzard is sabatoging Elemental shaman in much the way Demo Locks were being openly sabatoged last expac. Only this has been going on since Wrath ended and is never addressed.

I can't be the only one that feels like there is an intentional push from Blizzard to get us to reroll am I?

I understand that no one wants to let the devs see posts suggesting this because somehow they'll punish us more for.... I dunno pettiness? I mean what gives. Other classes QQ until their tears flood the forums and their tantrums get results, but we have to walk on eggshells because SHAMAN.

The best of the best have pointed out every time where Blizzard was going wrong with this spec every Beta and the pattern has been the same each time.

Expansion launches, we're in a terrible place for months and then when they see we're not going to drop our beloved spec they slowly improve us until we're finally viable at the end of the expansion. Even OP like the end of MoP.

Essentially we all get a delayed start to enjoying the game because we dared to choose to play Elemental Shaman.

Other specs like Frost mages and all the Warlock specs get new shinies just in time for raiding while we languish in the celler for Earthmother knows how much longer?

We don't even get blue posts about our abysmal state FFS.
I so badly want to play my Elemental Shaman, the class has so much potential to be a VERY cool spec to play, but it's totally ruined due to poor mechanics in game.

The damage output is terrible in both PVE and PVP. The introduction of Maelstrom has been an absolute failure. It completely destroys any opportunity for the Elemental Shaman to be competitive in PVP in it's current state. As it stands now, in order to gain Maelstrom, you need to cast spells that require you to stand still (Lightning Bolt, etc), but due to our class, our mobility is terrible and we get trained by melee so hard that we HAVE to be able to move and gain Maelstrom at the same time. The second we stand still... we die.

Right now, in order to gain Maelstrom we need to stand still to cast... we get trained, which forces us to move, which negates our ability to gain Maelstrom, which negates our ability to cast spells that gain Maelstrom. In fact, the instant cast spells that we can cast while moving can DRAIN any Maelstrom that we unlikely had a chance to accumulate in the first place.

A major fix for this would be to change Lightning Bolt to be castable while moving again. I truly believe this would go a long way to really help the class. The class could use perhaps another defensive to help against melee, but having this change to Lightning Bolt would go a long way to help us MOVE to help us be more effective.

I think after this change to Lightning, we could then compare our DPS to other classes and adjust. But besides DPS, our lack of mobility is the major issue which this change to Lightning Bolt would help out.
09/29/2016 11:42 PMPosted by Ether
Side note: I'd like Ascendance to be baseline as well. That would be a strong buff to elemental shamans without the need to heavily change ratios of our spells.


Agree 100%! Taking Ascendance and placing into a tier talent was lazy innovation. While having the opportunity to make it baseline for all specs and a tier(s) talent that modifies it. Loved the introduction of the spell, but I would also appreciate it to align with other spell CD's. I want to be a smart raider, but finding windows to be a 2/3 minute glass cannon is difficult on a class that has little on-the-run possibilities. I know I can spec into the frost talent, but common, if I suddenly have to move while Ascendance + EM is up, that's all she wrote...
The 7.1 Notes have been released and there are currently no changes to elemental shaman. Revising this post to bring atention to the lack of expertise in the shaman development department. The balance team needs more changes than elemental does. There is still a member among the devs that believes elemental shaman is sleeper OP and all complaints are hyperbole (Celestios or whatever his name is, the guy who tweeted bink , main theorycrafter, that he's essentially a joke) despite public log and sim data. I don't really like there's anymore information possible to support the lackluster spec, but if there is more compelling data that needs to be mined it would be nice if a blue would let us know what other evidence we need to bring to the able.

P.S. Don't balance us around 5 man unless you are intending for Gul'dan to leave the Nighthold and become a boss in the arcway.

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