Ask The Devs #10 - Damage Dealing (Answers)

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it's interesting that from the perspective of the devs, subtlety is a viable pve tree. i wonder what they are seeing or doing in their testing environments that no player on live is able to do, actually.
I've played frost since I could and though they're right, it is *comparable*, that isn't what raid guilds are looking for. As far as I can tell, I've actually been kicked out of my guild because I can't keep up the dps compared to one of the best all around mages I've ever seen. But because his numbers are so inflated (he'll play whichever does the highest theoretical damage) mine look ever smaller. I was actually booted from a raid because of my spec, though was put back in because I was the only other mage to CS H Halfus' aoe. Mechanics and utility don't matter to guildmasters and raid leaders as much as the damage players tunnel with, which is sad. It's enough to make people give up the game.
It's "long" because the answers are long. It's short in that you didn't even touch every class; I saw more than once a question regarding Survival hunters having no scaling with weapon damage, yet you gave shamans at least 3 answers, for example.
Aaaaaand not a single answer to any of the extraordinarily valid warlock questions we asked.

Why am I not surprised?

You didn't gather enough warlocks to vote on your questions good sir!

What warlocks?
Oh my god. Mandokir in Zul'Gurub. His devestating slam is ridiculous because if you lag it kills you without giving you time to move. :P
I played a Combat Rogue for years.
The reason I played Combat was because it was good for target changes.

I didn't care that Assassination would beat Combat in damage, because IMO they were a bunch of meter chasers, and I was doing the real work, dealing with adds and fight mechanics.

Then come Cata, Blizzard decides to add Bandit's Guile to artificially give Combat the highest ramp time of any spec.

Now you tell that horrible ramp up is the "flavor" of being a Rogue?
I guess I must of been doing it wrong for years...

You didn't gather enough warlocks to vote on your questions good sir!

What warlocks?

You guys really need to work on demon suffrage. Would really help you out at the ballot box.
Sometimes I think we as a community are a little hard on these folks. I think at the very least our expectations are getting a little out of line. I have seen this game evolve exponentially over the last 7 years and it's easy to take things for granted. I can't even imagine the undertaking and coding requirements for just one spell working properly in all situations, much less building 10 classes with 3 specs each and keeping PVE/PVP balance in mind. Sure we can all agree that there are some things that don't work or feel exactly right, but this game will never be perfect in everyone's opinion. At least they are listening. Try getting something out of another game developer and see how far you get.

Maybe a few of you should sit down sometime and try your hand at a little software development. Then go ahead write a few lines of code to create a world for 12 million people to play in, with all sorts of different interests and ideas about how to enjoy the game, 30 different spec variations, a full working economy, accessible from every country around the world, 99% uptime for almost a decade, and make sure that every one of a quadrillion variables work in perfect harmony.

After you are done, maybe you can go ahead and engineer a cure for that pesky cancer thing, bring peace to the world, solve our little energy issue, put global warming on cooldown, and post something helpful or relevant other than my frost mage DPS sucks in PVE, blizzard sucks, blah, blah, blah, my butt hurts.

Rant over
Q: Are there any plans to reduce ramp-up times and RNG for certain specs? IE shadow orbs can not proc for quite a while sometimes, hindering our DPS. Xista (NA/ANZ), Whitewnd (KR)

    A: We generally introduce ramp-up time for two reasons. The first and most important is so players have a decision about when to switch targets. If there was zero cost for target swapping, then it would always be the right thing to do. We want to reward players, modestly, when they know when they should swap targets versus sticking with the original. The second issue is that ramp-up time helps us reduce burst in PvP.

    The intent for Shadow Orbs was that procs weren’t guaranteed so that there is some unpredictability involved to add gameplay. We could easily make it less random, but then they wouldn’t be something you think about or factor in your rotation. Sometimes you won’t get Shadow Orb procs and your DPS will be lower than it could be if you get really lucky. Shadow Priest DPS is balanced around the average of those two extremes. If you get lucky and get good procs, that’s an unexpected bonus.

    There’s a thin line between something that’s frustratingly random and something that is boring and has no gameplay. We have learned that when percent chances are too high, then rather than feeling like a bonus when it happens, it becomes very frustrating when it fails to happen.

It comes down to this orb procs and bigger hits with mind blast seems like a good thing but the complete randomness of orbs and sitting for extended periods without the empowered shadows buff feels like too much of a penalty. I personally would like to see the empowered shadows portion go to a static buff from mastery and have orbs procs for mind blast.
06/24/2011 02:44 PMPosted by Lhivera
You guys really need to work on demon suffrage. Would really help you out at the ballot box.

My VW can't even hold a mob's attention, are you sure you trust him to vote?
It's nice to see so many interesting questions asked by pure DPS classes being answered in the ATD directed at them.
I kind of feel sorry for the hybrids, they not only have far less utility than pures, but the devs also seem to practically ignore them half the time! Not only that, but they do less DPS than the pure classes oriented at DPS!
All hybrids have it tough, but I feel especially bad for Shamans. They, as a hybrid class should definitely be doing more damage! The devs only answered 4 of their questions too!
Poor Shamans.
06/24/2011 02:17 PMPosted by Violetta
How does poor target swapping tie into the Rogue class identity when all of the mechanics that make it so terrible were introduced this expansion?

Bad target switching capability was always part of the Rogue identity. Problem is, other classes got better at it while Rogues didn't.

And they try to sell a bad quality as a positive point (it's what makes us unique!), to boot.
06/24/2011 09:39 AMPosted by Mafic
Actually PVE sub and Kspree were addressed in the Q/A, which may not satisfy some people. But, it shows that they want steady, small DPS boosts to all three rogue trees. Sub could use a little more to catch up to combat/assassination. But they have to prioritize first raising the ceiling for combat/assassination, and then may look to bring sub up to par.

The problem is that by the time they take care of Combat/Assassination we'll be around to the next set of fights or problems with mechanics and Subt will just wallow in its own ... well you know.
They said back before Wrath that they wanted to make it playable in PvE, went ignored the whole Xpak, what makes you think its going to be different here? Thinking awhile back they made the remark that there just wasn't enough "real world" numbers for Subt for them to really work with it easily. If they stopped the minor tweak baby-footing that they've tried since Wrath then maybe they'd get people to use it and attain those real world numbers that they lack.
06/24/2011 11:24 AMPosted by Neryssa
Hey buddy, at least you GOT some love. There's crippling issues with Warlock/Hunter PvP right now and both of them got absolutely nothing.

Go and look at the top 10 3s teams on every battlegroup, and you will find a warlock in half of them. No joke. You will find zero enhancement shamans.

I actually feel bad for hunters, because now they are more or less in the same boat as the enhancement shaman: we each had one viable comp for high-end arena in this xpac (Turbocleave for Enh and KFC for hunters), but, when there was a huge nerf that basically removed the viability of those comps, there really aren't a whole lot of options for us.

06/24/2011 11:49 AMPosted by ßamf
And shamans are fine in PvE.

Just... no. Elemental and Enhance both need a whole lot of help in pve.
Sub is fine, and they've just confirmed it.

I play Sub well, not perfect, but well. I can perform above my Assasination level of DPS as Sub (reforged and more appropriately enchanted). Assassination is one of the easier DPS specs in the game to play - you keep up your buffs and you make sure your short term buffs (from Envenom) don't overlap, that is really about it. Subtlety is just fine.

If you want to play Sub and have trouble with the rotation you should try sub-speccing into Combat for the Improved Slice and Dice talent, which makes the rotation MUCH easier at a relatively small loss in DPS (you lose a lot of Backstab damage but gain Eviscerates and easier play). I've done it, and it isn't drastically less DPS output.

And depending on how the changes to Hemo work out it would be the spec of choice for those using Hemo in place of Backstab.

This was the best Q&A I think I've seen. Thank you Blizzard! :D
06/24/2011 11:53 AMPosted by Marthalomuel
And shamans are fine in PvE.

Oh really.

Being in a heroic raiding guild, I can honestly say yes.

Just... no. Elemental and Enhance both need a whole lot of help in pve.

They need a couple minor fixes (totems unable to be placed on P3 Al'akir, junk like that), but they're fine now, and they'll be even better next patch.
May as well have called it: Ask the Devs: Enhancement Edition.

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