Azerite - Worst Itemization in WoW's History

Battle for Azeroth Items and Classes
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09/27/2018 02:42 PMPosted by Deathstream
09/27/2018 12:56 PMPosted by Rothulian
Can we not ignore the real problem? Alts are important and all.

But traits are nowhere near tuned well enough.

We've gone from there being a 30% difference between traits to 20%. That's not good enough. And if Blizzard thinks it is that's not acceptable.


They don't think it's good enough, Ian specified in the recent Q&A that they were going to start the balancing process by reigning in the more powerful Azerite traits, then they'll move to buffing the weaker ones to match the others.


It's not possible to buff a trait enough if the trait modifies an ability that is not used.

The root problem is the horrible class design.
The unfortunate reality is that we are now stuck with this system for at least the next few content patches. Too much time has been wasted on it for them to backtrack now, not that they seem inclined to anyway.
09/27/2018 02:44 PMPosted by Cerakha
The unfortunate reality is that we are now stuck with this system for at least the next few content patches. Too much time has been wasted on it for them to backtrack now, not that they seem inclined to anyway.

The fallacy of sunk cost is entirely missed
09/26/2018 06:19 PMPosted by Lore
I mentioned the imbalance between traits before, but just to expand on that: that's why we've focused so much effort into tuning Azerite traits over the past few weeks.


Okay but Ephemeral Recovery was one of those which got tuned. It got a 15% buff and I'm worried that you guys have done that and decided "welp, that's that one checked off the list" and it's never going to be addressed again.

It's bad.

It's really bad.

After the buff it is worth 120 mana/8 seconds. It takes 2:20 to get enough mana for one rejuv, and rejuv is a relatively cheap spell at 2100 mana (10.5% base mana). Certainly it's the cheapest regular heal in my kit (some talented CDs are cheaper). In a 6 minute fight, I won't even get enough mana for a single Wild Growth.

I love the idea of there being a mana recovery trait, but that one just does nothing. And the fact that it got a 15% buff which still leaves it a mistake to take is disheartening. It's worrying that even with you guys taking a 2nd look at traits (which is certainly needed and good) some of them are still missing the mark this badly.

If it's intended to be at this power level, it'd honestly be better replaced with something else, almost anything else, outright. As it is it's a dead slot on a piece which has it.
So my take on this only really having read the blue posts. Are you telling me the traits or item level is more important? When i get 370 or 385 pieces the intent is they are better than my 340 piece? That is why you are homogenizing the traits so it isnt as much disparity between ok or bis traits and thus not a disappointment for your 45 ilevel bump to be a downgrade?

This leads me to then are you saying with my multiple sets for different aspects of the game i have to be weaker instead of reforgong regularly. I like pvp as destruction, raiding as afflic and m+ as demonology. Are you telling me i have to choose what is most important to me to utilize the higher item level with instead of increasing my characters overall power in all aspects from a higher drop like i do with every non azerite armor piece?
If all traits were balanced and the same what's the point of farming other pieces? I think the problem is that people don't want this much RNG. If they wanted more RNG they'd play Diablo. RNG isn't bad, but RNG on top of RNG is. Gear should be targetable. In Vanilla, BC, Wraith, etc. You knew X boss dropped X item and people would farm it. In Legion and BFA players have to complete a dungeon, wait a week to get one piece hopefully. I'd say that each class had a BIS from raiding and dungeons. Raiding is not horrible how it is now, but dungeons are. On top of all that you have titanforging, grm slots, and secondary traits. While fun at first, it becomes very tedious to get gear. I'd much rather have a gearing system similar to Wraith. The Valor points at least assured that after your hard work you could target specific items.

I don't know. I'm tired. All in all, this system feels worse than Legendaries and tier sets.

No amount of tuning will fix these issues:
*Maul is a worthless ability in our spellbook while tanking.
and
*Guardian's Wrath is a worthless trait because it buffs a worthless ability.



This is not a problem with Azerite, this is a problem with the Guardian Druid rotation. If they can add something else to maul to make it more appealing then it might actually be worth using.
09/27/2018 02:42 PMPosted by Deathstream
09/27/2018 12:56 PMPosted by Rothulian
Can we not ignore the real problem? Alts are important and all.

But traits are nowhere near tuned well enough.

We've gone from there being a 30% difference between traits to 20%. That's not good enough. And if Blizzard thinks it is that's not acceptable.


They don't think it's good enough, Ian specified in the recent Q&A that they were going to start the balancing process by reigning in the more powerful Azerite traits, then they'll move to buffing the weaker ones to match the others.


Traits with the like of Ephemeral Recovery could get a 400% buff and they S T I L L wouldn't be a compelling or engaging choice compared to other traits.

...Not that it even matters for that specific trait, because for healing and tanking classes you literally don't even have a choice for the middle ring because the middle ring only has 1 dps trait, 1 healer trait, and 1 tank trait. You take the trait belonging to whatever role you're in. It's hardly even a choice, let alone an engaging one.
09/26/2018 06:19 PMPosted by Lore
Few things I'd like to comment on here.

First off, thanks for putting this thread together. Even if phrases like "Worst Itemization in WoW's History" are a bit hyperbolic (seriously, I can't be the only one who remembers farming level 30 dungeons for AQ40 resistance gear), you've summarized a lot of the discussions we've been seeing around the community very well. It really helps us clarify exactly what we need to be focusing on.

I'll speak to each of your points as best as I can:

Regarding targeting specific traits: I think we've said this a few times now, but just to reiterate, we believe that's merely a symptom of the imbalance between traits. Ideally, the gap between them isn't so large that you feel it would be hugely beneficial to grind out the perfect set.

The point about traits being "useless and uninteresting" is interesting considering that you also make the point of "every gear change requires simming." These two points are kind of at odds with each other. The way to solve the simming issue would be to make the traits more simplistic in nature. Similarly, making traits with more outside-the-box designs leads to more complicated questions of "is this better or not," which in turn encourages more simming. Either way, it's an interesting challenge, and one we're taking to mind as we move forward with traits in future updates.

I think we agree that re-farming traits doesn't feel great. I don't have a solve for that issue to share today, and to be completely transparent it may be something we simply have to accept as a downside to the system for other reasons. But we agree it can be a bit of a downer.

I mentioned the imbalance between traits before, but just to expand on that: that's why we've focused so much effort into tuning Azerite traits over the past few weeks. With this most recent round of tuning, we think we've gotten most of the really egregious outliers dialed in, but please let us know if there are any you still feel are so good that they're worth huge sacrifices in terms of item level.

As to the point about reforging costs: these costs get so high because we want the behavior you're describing -- reforging constantly depending on what you're doing -- to be unsustainable. Our intention is that you either build out multiple sets of gear for different situations, or you lean towards traits that work in a variety of roles (even if they're maybe not the absolute best for each in particular). We added the reforging system to help ease cases like, for example, a DPS who suddenly finds themselves needing to transition to being their guild's main tank, not as a means for constantly re-adjusting traits like a second set of talent points. Maybe the current system isn't achieving that, but if it isn't, we're likely to become MORE restrictive on reforging, not less.

And finally, regarding the tuning passes: like I mentioned, we think we've got most of the major outliers dialed in to an acceptable level at this point. There's likely to still be some adjustments here and there, but we don't believe we're going to need another big wave of Azerite trait tuning like you've seen over the last few weeks. To put it another way: if one trait is far and away the best compared to every other option, sure, we should probably do something about that, but we don't expect that to take the form of a widespread tuning pass going forward.

Also, to Ion's comment about new traits being introduced: he was referring to new traits on new gear added in new content, with higher item level, that replaces your old gear entirely. We're not planning to add in new traits to existing items, so don't worry about holding onto old Azerite pieces just in case their traits change.


This feels like a lot of words for a pretty darn weak response that doesn't even hint at much in the way of positive changes. "Next raid tier will fix it" was an eyeroll inducing meme back in WotLK days and it hasn't magically gotten any easier to swallow a decade later.

The sticking point for me though is the issue of refarming Azerite Traits. You practically danced around the issue suggesting it's "bit of a downer." and that we will simply have to roll with it this expansion? What the hell is that rubbish...? It seems like any enjoyment we get because of Azerite Traits is in spite of the hamfist design, not because of and then you pretty much dismiss the issue outright is a minor concern we will have to just put up with.

Yeah...No. This is likely the biggest issue with this awkward and vastly inferior system to what we had only last expansion. I know you likely wanted to avoid the issue and pay it as little attention as possible due to the developers having no real answer to the corner they painted themselves in to but I do hope you take back the message that both the system and idea it is nothing more than "bit of a downer" isn't going to fly. At all.
Just add Azerite to M+ loot tables and it fixes every problem with Azerite.
As a quick aside: I understand and appreciate that many of you are frustrated about the system. That's why I'm here - to get a better understanding of what exactly is frustrating people so I can present that feedback to the development team.

Step 1 of that process is explaining what our viewpoint is so that you guys can present counter-arguments. If your response to that explanation is to roll your eyes and make snarky comments about how dumb I am, that's fine, but it's really not helping make the game any better.

I get the need to vent, but if y'all could keep the personal attacks and memes to a minimum that'd make it a hell of a lot easier for me to actually help make the video game more fun for you.
The tone deafness of Lore and developers is amazingly loud.

If all the traits are equal or close to it, why have different traits? Just make it a second talent tree and be done with it.

If items are neigh impossible to obtain in mythic+ chests and/or raids, why not have a currency system whereby you can eventually get the items.

This also shows the weakness of warforging and titanforging, it devalues the idea of currency bought items because the likelihood of an item getting randomly upgraded way above a bought piece is enough of an incentive to always farm for that item and hope for an upgrade...that is poor design, people shouldn't feel forced to play the same character constantly to be competitive, but maybe they could level alts and make them useful too if they weren't worried about farming for gear for 1 character that is likely never to drop.
09/27/2018 02:51 PMPosted by Drzilladin
Just add Azerite to M+ loot tables and it fixes every problem with Azerite.


No, it doesn't. See my post here:
https://us.battle.net/forums/en/wow/topic/20769060102?page=40#post-790
So blizzards solution to Azerite is to make all the good talents as bad as the others, making "customization" which they pouted being so great with the system completely bogus because its all going to be the same or close enough to.... how boring.... the system is bad because its dull, that does nothing to fix it and only hurts the system moreso.
09/27/2018 12:48 PMPosted by Lore
09/27/2018 12:43 PMPosted by Duckle
Weird, I wanted Uplifted Spirits, Font of Life, and Overflowing Mist on my gear for healing, but instead I have Elusive Footwork, Fit to Burst, and Boiling Brew. As you know, those three do absolutely nothing for mistweaver, while the former three do nothing for brewmaster. It would cost me hundreds to thousands of gold to spec swap even once per day, and since I do m+ as brewmaster and any raiding as almost exclusively mistweaver, that's a pretty frequent occurrence. It would actually save an insane amount of gold to just have a 2nd monk, though I wouldn't do it personally.

There's also the part where I'd even have equal ilvl azerite pieces pretty quick, since azerite over 340 might as well not exist despite my 370 ilvl.

And you believe the process of leveling and gearing a 2nd monk would be more efficient than farming those 340s on your main?

To be clear I'm not arguing - legitimately trying to make sure I understand this feedback.


Imagine only having a limited amount of chances at an azerite piece a week

The azerite system is a complete and utter failure. If there is a discrepancy in trait performance people will try to optimize it making the "choice" of traits an illusion. If there isn't a discrepancy in trait performance there's no point in even having the traits. I genuinely don't understand how blizzard thinks of this stuff and sees it being a good idea. Like how do they overlook the fact that some traits are just going to be better than others? M+ needs to drop base mythic 340 azerite pieces. I get it. They dont want it to titanforge because then there would be literally 0 incentive to raid right now because the pieces other than azerite in raid are pure trash.
09/27/2018 12:27 PMPosted by Lore
09/27/2018 12:22 PMPosted by Fiascoh
If I wanted to play brewmaster or mistweaver right now, I would be significantly better off by making a 2nd monk. Is this really the design you were going for?

Not at all, and I'm curious why you feel that's the case. It isn't in my experience as someone who is currently playing a tri-spec monk.
I'm not even shocked anymore... not even remotely shocked you misunderstand someone might feel the need to play duplicates of the same class just to get an edge on the stingy amount of competitive loot you guys have tuned.
09/27/2018 02:53 PMPosted by Lore
I get the need to vent, but if y'all could keep the personal attacks and memes to a minimum that'd make it a hell of a lot easier for me to actually help make the video game more fun for you.


Please make sure and read the post I just linked. It explains how as a tank I have Azerite gear with a trait I don't want because it's for an ability I never use. And I explained why the ability is bad.

PROBLEM: Guardians have been telling you all about this for months and you aren't listening. The Guardian feedback thread on this forum is at almost 800 replies and still no response from Blizzard.

You've just abandoned bears this expansion.



EDIT: Adding link to save your time.
https://us.battle.net/forums/en/wow/topic/20769060102?page=40#post-790
09/27/2018 02:53 PMPosted by Lore
As a quick aside: I understand and appreciate that many of you are frustrated about the system. That's why I'm here - to get a better understanding of what exactly is frustrating people so I can present that feedback to the development team.

Step 1 of that process is explaining what our viewpoint is so that you guys can present counter-arguments. If your response to that explanation is to roll your eyes and make snarky comments about how dumb I am, that's fine, but it's really not helping make the game any better.

I get the need to vent, but if y'all could keep the personal attacks and memes to a minimum that'd make it a hell of a lot easier for me to actually help make the video game more fun for you.


Completely understand that.

Let me re-iterate what would make it more fun:

Get Rid of Azerite Gear.
Artifact traits / talent tree on necklace. Swaps with spec changes (Like current talents)
Legendaries - targetable. Meter to work towards like Island Expedition Azerite meter (for the weekly reward).
Bring back tier sets.
09/27/2018 02:53 PMPosted by Lore
As a quick aside: I understand and appreciate that many of you are frustrated about the system. That's why I'm here - to get a better understanding of what exactly is frustrating people so I can present that feedback to the development team.

Step 1 of that process is explaining what our viewpoint is so that you guys can present counter-arguments. If your response to that explanation is to roll your eyes and make snarky comments about how dumb I am, that's fine, but it's really not helping make the game any better.

I get the need to vent, but if y'all could keep the personal attacks and memes to a minimum that'd make it a hell of a lot easier for me to actually help make the video game more fun for you.


remove azerite gear or add it to m+ while also removing the reforge costs
those are the only way to fix this and both are equally bad bandaids, the entire system needs to be rebuilt from the ground up because 80% of classes feel like absolute !@# to play
09/27/2018 02:53 PMPosted by Lore
As a quick aside: I understand and appreciate that many of you are frustrated about the system. That's why I'm here - to get a better understanding of what exactly is frustrating people so I can present that feedback to the development team.

Step 1 of that process is explaining what our viewpoint is so that you guys can present counter-arguments. If your response to that explanation is to roll your eyes and make snarky comments about how dumb I am, that's fine, but it's really not helping make the game any better.

I get the need to vent, but if y'all could keep the personal attacks and memes to a minimum that'd make it a hell of a lot easier for me to actually help make the video game more fun for you.


Please ignore the trolls. This issue boils down to the fact that there isn’t a way to farm the top Azerite traits.

I need more haste? Let me just see what M+ dungeons drop a ring I want. Need a better trinket? Let me see which one to run.

Want to upgrade my 340 Azerite piece? Pray to God almighty that I get a decent 385 Azerite piece from my mythic cache. Before the Streaking Stars nerf, my 385 Azerite helmet was only a 190 DPS increase over my 340 helmet. That just feels absolutely miserable.

Please add a way to farm high level Azerite pieces we want or a way to change the Azerite traits to ones we actually want. You can add a vendor that sells an item bought with Sanguicells that accomplishes this (since they’re basically absolutely useless unless you’re a certain profession).

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