Why not fix classes?

Tides of Vengeance PTR General Discussion
I don't see how Ion still has a job. Sure he is not actually developing but in any other job if you mismanaged this bad you would have been canned before BFA even launched.
Class fun was pruned to make room for tertiary systems like the artifact weapon and asserite armor.

All will bow to Overlord Ion.
I fear that we won't see any major class changes until 8.2, and maybe we'll even have to wait until the next expansion for complete solution. They brought Holinka as a combat designer, so that means some changes hopefully, for better or worse.
Why not fix classes?

It's almost too simple, right? Given that, Blizz would probably totally miss it. But, it's actually worse; they strategically decided to make many classes materially worse in BFA. They thought it would be an improvement. I wouldn't look to the implementors of that idea to "fix" the classes they improved worse.
It's what happens when the guys in charge of making money get to much power in a gaming company. Games turn to !@#$.
11/11/2018 05:11 AMPosted by Milkshooter
Many specs are so lazily designed its insulting and some are such a hot mess that you wonder if they did it on purpose.

I won't say they deliberately broke classes or specs, but I do think the lazy/generic design is quite intentional. Removing abilities from the player and putting them on temporary items supports their current philosophy of single expansion gimmicks like the artifact weapon and azerite armor. Until that philosophy changes, I don't think we're going to see good class design.
11/12/2018 06:20 AMPosted by Gilligan
Why not fix classes?

It's almost too simple, right? Given that, Blizz would probably totally miss it. But, it's actually worse; they strategically decided to make many classes materially worse in BFA. They thought it would be an improvement. I wouldn't look to the implementors of that idea to "fix" the classes they improved worse.

But look at all the people they have repeatedly rerolling FOTM classes because their mains are broken! That should result in a constant stream of boost sales.
Cut them slack? I don't pay them 15 dollars a month for them to regress on Class Design every Xpack.
11/12/2018 08:37 PMPosted by Hardwire
Removing abilities from the player and putting them on temporary items supports their current philosophy of single expansion gimmicks like the artifact weapon and azerite armor. Until that philosophy changes, I don't think we're going to see good class design.


Honestly the artifact system had its problems but it was workable.

The azerite system is way worse. I don't know why they went this route. This was a dumb choice that has led to classes being in highly questionable places and honestly I don't think anyone likes the azerite system.

I also will agree that this system is part of the issue but it isn't the entire problem.
11/12/2018 09:18 PMPosted by Milkshooter
11/12/2018 08:37 PMPosted by Hardwire
Removing abilities from the player and putting them on temporary items supports their current philosophy of single expansion gimmicks like the artifact weapon and azerite armor. Until that philosophy changes, I don't think we're going to see good class design.


Honestly the artifact system had its problems but it was workable.

The azerite system is way worse. I don't know why they went this route. This was a dumb choice that has led to classes being in highly questionable places and honestly I don't think anyone likes the azerite system.

I also will agree that this system is part of the issue but it isn't the entire problem.

I honestly quite enjoyed the artifact system - I appreciate always having an appropriate weapon a lot more now that I'm sitting at 365 with a 340 weapon - but no matter how good the SYSTEM implemented is (azerite armor isn't counting as a good system, for the record), the basic philosophy behind the system is going to cause problems. A good system masks those problems until the new gimmick comes along, but they just aren't going to put in the effort to make classes good at the baseline, because they see the gimmick as the means of "finishing" class design. Artifact weapons masked the problem, so long as you didn't switch specs; azerite abilities are too lackluster and RNG dependent, so there's no hiding the hot mess of the underlying class.
11/12/2018 09:26 PMPosted by Hardwire
I honestly quite enjoyed the artifact system


I did too. But I also know it had its flaws.

11/12/2018 09:26 PMPosted by Hardwire
A good system masks those problems until the new gimmick comes along, but they just aren't going to put in the effort to make classes good at the baseline, because they see the gimmick as the means of "finishing" class design.


Oh I agree. The problem I have here is that its just being lazy. They could of added azerite traits that were just nice little bonuses or insert other things here.

11/12/2018 09:26 PMPosted by Hardwire
azerite abilities are too lackluster and RNG dependent, so there's no hiding the hot mess of the underlying class.


Oh again I agree. However this is just laziness. I have played other MMOs . Some of the top contenders for top MMO don't have close to the design issues this game has class wise.

One of the biggest issues they could argue is the spec system has branched off in such a way that it led to a metric ton of work to make it even close to both balanced and interesting however with ability pruning being what it is and most classes only having 5 to 6 dps buttons outside of cooldowns this shouldn't of been overly hard.

Don't get me wrong I know that not all specs will be the top specs however what we have now feels like the devs just said screw it and tossed out a product that shouldn't of been dropped as is.

The thing that gets my goat is that they are adding to the azerite system this is more then likely going to add more problems to it.
I don't think we're disagreeing at all, really. I just see the azerite system as more of a symptom than the problem. I think the real problem goes deeper, and as long as they're designing for "rental abilities" that are used to paper over bare-bones specs, every system they come up with is going to have the same weaknesses. Those weaknesses may be more or less visible, but at the end of the day I think they have got to change their "cool one expac gimmick" philosophy if they want to design truly compelling gameplay.

(I also agree with you that there is an element of laziness involved. Not necessarily just in the system design, but in the very fact that they're looking for a "snap on" system that lets them appear to update and change the classes, when they're really just snapping the new gimmick into the place of the old one.)
With classic coming out I’m ready to just watch this iteration of wow crash and burn while I eat my popcorn.
11/13/2018 10:37 AMPosted by Raypugh
With classic coming out I’m ready to just watch this iteration of wow crash and burn while I eat my popcorn.


As someone who loved classic and hates a number of things about BFA... I couldn't see myself going back full time. Maybe until 9.0 hits. ...because classes are going to be balanced then, end game content will last more than a month, it's going to be great... ...it will be. ...it has to be.

...

Wtf am I doing here.
11/13/2018 10:08 AMPosted by Hardwire
I don't think we're disagreeing at all, really. I just see the azerite system as more of a symptom than the problem.


No we aren't disagreeing.

11/13/2018 10:08 AMPosted by Hardwire
I think the real problem goes deeper, and as long as they're designing for "rental abilities" that are used to paper over bare-bones specs, every system they come up with is going to have the same weaknesses.


Oh again I don't disagree but I see this as more or less being lazy with how they have pruned abilities you should be able to balance the specs within a stones throw of each other based off utility if you only have so many abilities to work around it simply becomes a numbers game and if you keep tweaking and consider scaling. They have massive betas and the like where they can draw this data and tweak the numbers accordingly. If a high utility class is top dps minor nerfs and if a low utility dps is low minor buffs.

11/13/2018 10:08 AMPosted by Hardwire
(I also agree with you that there is an element of laziness involved. Not necessarily just in the system design, but in the very fact that they're looking for a "snap on" system that lets them appear to update and change the classes, when they're really just snapping the new gimmick into the place of the old one.)


This is also well said. The overall design philosophy is definitely flawed and lazy between us the question is more what you think it is more of. Personally I see it as incredibly lazy and very flawed but by the look of it you see it as incredibly flawed and very lazy. Minor difference but outside that I think we both agree this shouldn't be a thing. This is an awful system no matter how you flip that pancake.

The blow back of this system is also taking effect as well. Limiting access to the azerite pieces while making them super important was a bad idea. This of course caused massive blow back and forced them to change certain things because frankly it was indefensible. They are even adding a vendor. They are at this junction trying to distract from the system being awful by throwing gear at people and hoping they will go away.

I doubt this will work given how frustrated people are with the system them limiting what azerite pieces you could get at the start only made things worse for them because it further highlighted the problems with it right at the start.

Again what gets my goat instead of looking at the classes and trying to fix things properly they are simply adding more to the azerite system. If I am right all this is going to do if it makes class balance better is balance classes around the rental abilities however given how the system works you have to fish for the ability. If you get it grats your spec is viable if not go suck a lemon seems to be the idea.
11/13/2018 01:45 PMPosted by Milkshooter
Personally I see it as incredibly lazy and very flawed but by the look of it you see it as incredibly flawed and very lazy.

Yeah, that's a good way of putting our differences. I see it as flawed right down to the roots. So flawed that, no matter how much work they put into it, that work is just going to cover the innate defect in their approach. And of course, when they don't put the work in, the cracks are visible all over the place.

That said, I think the reason they opted for this inherently flawed system is either laziness or cost cutting. Similar to how they said they wanted to streamline the backend so that doing an ilvl squish was as easy as turning a dial (rather than stop bloating numbers so that they NEED to continually squish them), they want to put a system in place that can be updated with minimal manpower. Who needs a class design team when you're just snapping out the old gimmick and snapping in the new one?
11/13/2018 04:10 PMPosted by Hardwire
Who needs a class design team when you're just snapping out the old gimmick and snapping in the new one?


Problem is it isn't working. Class balance is a gong show.

All this cutting of corners caused a situation where you are going to have to pull the thing up from its roots to fix.

How to address it? Well that would be forcing them to do so.
How to do that is a question in and around itself. I imagine they will be forced to if 8.1 causes a mass exodus like I think it will.
Their idea of adding class "auras" for tuning purposes is a great idea really but they totally failed on the pre-requisite for that to work. THE UNDERLYING DESIGN HAS TO BE BALANCABLE AND ENJOYABLE. They failed to take an approach to class design that is sustainable and balancable in a competitive environment. This says nothing about enjoyable gameplay either.

You can't have a blood DK tank by healing and a warrior tank by mitigation and say that is their niche and then just assume that you can place the two on equal footing by simply moving some damage taken and dealt numbers across the board. If you have a DK pulling 8k DPS and allowing a healer to DPS most of the time adding 6K DPS to the group then to make the warrior a reasonable option he has to pull 14k DPS to compensate needing constant healing, and that assumes all other parts of their kit are equal.

You can't tune mobility, utility, damage types, and survivability using sweeping changes.

If each class can do each other's job to some extent but in a unique way then what they have will work. But that's not what they want. They think they can have one class do single Target and another do multi target and another do both and then just increase decrease their values by X% to balance them. This totally ignores that AoE is critical in many fights making the single target class a non-option unless they bring that single target damage up to a level which can negate the need for AoE in exchange for zerging.

Top that all off with making the classes play terribly overall and you get what we have now. If your class is fun as hell but always in the bottom 5 DPS its easier to overlook the numbers but if your class is boring your only motivation to play is competitive which you also suck at so then people just get angry or re-roll.

Azerite would be great too if it was seasoning something that is good to start with not making something mediocre slightly more bearable. Make the classes good and the other systems will seem better comparatively. Lack luster traits suck because they are lackluster but they go from meh status to joke when they are supposed to be completing the classes and compensating for multiple pruned active abilities and talents.
The devs are already heavily invested in Azerite. Plus for whatever reason the devs don't really do major class reworked in mid xpac. Even though every class needs 1. We're stuck til next xpac, which I have 0 hope for anyway.
11/11/2018 05:44 PMPosted by Silverbolt
I fear that we won't see any major class changes until 8.2, and maybe we'll even have to wait until the next expansion for complete solution. They brought Holinka as a combat designer, so that means some changes hopefully, for better or worse.


11/14/2018 01:54 PMPosted by Curzè
The devs are already heavily invested in Azerite. Plus for whatever reason the devs don't really do major class reworked in mid xpac. Even though every class needs 1. We're stuck til next xpac, which I have 0 hope for anyway.


That’s the thing, BfA “was” supposed to fix Legion’s mistakes and it’s turned out horribly. I assume they’ll do the same thing; admit they made some mistakes, say they’ll work to make things better, and next expac we’ll inexplicably get something even worse. I’m not sure we’ll get a solution, they’ll just continue making the problem worse.

The Wall Street Journal Tech News podcast featured a short interview with someone saying that companies are actively pursuing mobile gaming because everyone has a mobile device. Between that and the Blizzcon fiasco, I think we’re fcked. I think WoD-BfA is just the beginning of how bad things will get. They’ve demonstrated every single year since WoD alpha that they’ve got a direction and they’re not deviating from it. They’ve chosen money over quality and there will still be both sheep who blindly follow and those who remain hopeful. I was hopeful, for years at this point, and with BfA they’ve killed all hope I had in this game becoming good again. I’m hoping Classic is a huge hit and maybe they’ll end up releasing all the following expacs afterward. Here’s to hoping.

Join the Conversation

Return to Forum