Dev Watercooler – The Role of Role

General Discussion
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It's inevitable that their will be fights like spine where you want to stack, even slightly, a class/spec, but for DPS, again, the entire tier is a homage to mages. And believe it or not, I don't want mages struck down so if you have a model that everyone isn't the same, how about putting content in that actually showcases the differences.

I read your whole post, which was awesome. But the last sentence of the last paragraph stood out:
how about putting content in that actually showcases the differences

I think you hit the nail on the head there!
In my opinion the "pure" classes should have their specs removed altogether. Mix the three "trees" and then let the player chose which abilities/talents they want, up to a certain number that puts them on the same level with "hybrid" classes.

Take the mage for example, they could have access to all the available mage abilities but still choose whether or not they want to be primarily fire, arcane or frost. They would, however, be able to diversify that with spells from the other "schools" of magic.

All of my current level 85 toons are "pure" classes; rogue, warlock, mage and hunter, and I can't tell you enough how much I wish I could have access to all the abilities between the three specs. I think this would provide so much potential to be an individual as well as being able to fill the role of your choosing, whether it be PVE or PVP. When I play my rogue (who is my baby) I play Assassination, regardless of whether or not it is the best spec for PVP/PVE. I just love the way it feels. I wish that I could have the ability, however, to pick from the other specs to make the play style more interesting.

As far as the "hybrid" classes go all the toons I have are low level and I haven't played around with them much. I not sure as to the best way they could be changed or balanced.

The only fix they will ever do is find the class/spec least represented,buff the poop out of it,make it head and shoulders above any other class/spec (dps/survivability wise), wait until everyone stops complaining about that class/spec being OP and re-rolls one, then wait for the numbers to climb... and people have too much time/money invested in it to shelve it,then nerf it.
(class balance)
Rinse and repeat.

Raid boss Mechanics, First boss: joke boss,every class welcome.Second boss: stack X.Third boss: stack Y. Fourth boss: ZOMG don't stand there,run here,do the Hokey-Pokey, And you turn yourself around,all classes welcome. Final boss: Gear check mixed with Hokey-Pokey.
Okay so I'm a PvP junkie and so you should really take my opinion with that particular flavor of salt.

In that light I think multiple DPS specs is a great thing, but they need to be more different from each other than they are now. The major flaw I see in the current system is easy to point out: Too much CC. Every spec of every class has mounds and mounds of CC. In Warsong Gultch (where every battle involves every player most of the time) the whole thing seems to run in slow motion from start to finish. In every dungeon I tank in the rogue always complains if they don't get to sap before every pull or the mage whines when they poly someone right next to me in combat and my AE breaks the poly. It's really sad.

At this point we have Tanks, Healers, and then the vast faceless ocean of DPSers. The game needs to separate out CC as a separate spec from the DPS spec and then largely take that capability away from the rest of the DPSers. There should be no such thing as a toon that is both full of CC and hits top damage as well. It needs to be a choice of power vs utility and that choice needs to mean something. If you want to be top heals or DPS, then you get no CC. Not even a little. If you want CC, then you'll never have the best burst.

Let's be clear though, all tanks should get some CC. In dungeons they need to be able to peel mobs from the squishies and at the moment there really is absolutely no reason for anyone in PvP to skip the toon their add-on marks as a healer and attack the dude who spent his whole career amassing a large amount of HP and armor. Well, except for the fact that you can't spit wthout hiting three DKs and a Paly. I mean, the game is just silly with plate wearing DPS at the moment, but I digress.

So Tanks need CC as well, but really should do complete crap for damage. It would make the DPS usefull in dungeons (tanks can still routinely challenge the DPS for top damage) and in pvp it would force more team work in combats because no one could be a terror on their own.

My 1/5th of a dime.
Do away with specs altogether, just have 11 classes with a set number of abilities. Each class can choose from all of their class abilities. I can't think of anything that would make someone truly an individual. You choose your abilities for how you want to play the game.
The correct decision is a melding of model 3 and model 5. Every "pure" DPS spec needs to become a hybrid, but not by getting a tank or healer spec, but by being given a true fourth role.


To really make model 2 work you have to really commit to it. Dungeon finder needs to create groups of a healer, a tank, a utility spec, and 2 dps. They need their own forum, and the way they bring utility shouldn't be exactly the same as doing dps, except they do less of it. A true utility spec should have different gameplay and be making different decisions then a damage dealer.

Take all of those interrupts, crowd controls, offensive dispels, and non-damaging debuffs and put them on one spec. Give the arcane mage time warp, polymorph, etc... Make it so those players that choose Survival, or Affliction, or Assassination are those DPS party member who are always looking to interrupt, or the first to volunteer when something needs dispelled or cc'd. Then support that fourth role in your dungeon design.




Fourth Role: Utility.

If this were implemented, my currently waning enthusiasm to play the game would once again be renewed in force.

Back in mid-BC, I respec'd my original hunter to Survival (from BM) just out of curiosity, and discovered the glory of enhanced crowd control -- DPS be damned (Surv was a distant third in damage of the 3 hunter specs back then). To this day, even after the changes and revisions, it's still the only hunter spec I can play comfortably. Sadly, Surv has no true interrupt, and MM stole our Readiness... but old habits die hard.

I'll always be the first to CC that caster mob lobbing spells at the tank unrestrained, or peel the add off the healer and either drag it back to the tank or kite it until the tank can grab it again. Stuff like that is far more engaging than just turreting. I don't care a great deal about raw damage output and topping meters (even though I do ok on them); I do care about controlling the fight and making the tank's and healer's jobs easier, and generally ensuring the survival of the party.

DPS rotations bore me to tears, but when chaos erupts and I suddenly have an opportunity to jump into action and control the fight, saving us from a wipe... that's when I'm in my glory. I thrive on that kind of chaos, and I know I'm not the only one.

If "pure" DPS classes were to each have one of their specs dedicated to a new and vital Utility role, I would be absolutely in love with this game all over again.

One last Edit:
OK, it's been a week now. You asked for our feedback, we gave it by the ton. It would be really great if one of the CMs would just chime in here with a short "yes, we're still reading this thread, please continue" so that we know we're not just burping into the wind here, because right now this is looking less like a crowd-sourced brainstorming session and more like "a place to send those wacky players who think they have ideas so they're out of our hair". Just an acknowledgement... a nod, a grunt, a /wave, a /poke, something. Anything. Hello? Bueller?

Ill list the models i disagree with and the models i agree with.

model 1- i disagree with this model for veterans. it just takes the fun out of the game for me making every class have the same stuff. while this will balance pve and make raiding boring. it will also kill pvp and make arena alot easier. i would not suggest this model.

1.the good thing about this model is that it makes it alot easier on the new players.

model 2- i disagree with this model and everything about it.

model 3- i agree with this model, but it needs to be reworked in terms of who gets what utility and who actually needs it. were already seeing certain specs overpowering another spec because of better utility. this becomes a problem for those who wish to bring there class in endgame content and endgame arena/rated bgs,so certain specs get benched. also you could design different types of utility.something unique like mind control. this model also highly depends on how the boss encounters and comps are setup.

model 4- i agree with this model; however, it is to late to put this model in the game.

model 5- maybe you guys can make a fun public test realm for this model. or make 5 public test realms with each model in1 of them. then have players test them out.
I would absolutely LOVE a utility spec.


Mana regen
dps buffs on boss (earth and moon, but on steroids)
damage debuffs on boss (pain supression applied to boss to limit damage output, not on the tanks damage reception)
movement buffs (IE druid roar, or life grip)
defense cd's (amz, priest bubble, spirit link)
cc (or maybe AE cc's slows)

Frost mages
shamans (but you'd pick a specific specc. probably ele)
Disc priests
surv hunters
boomkins (ae innervate maybe? like priests have)

Some specc's are already very close to this role, with little tweaking needed to alter them.

Although i fear this will make healers feel less useful. simply filling health bars. but imagine if the damage output of a boss called for the same mini-maxing needed by dps to keep their targets up. they wouldn't have time. they'd be fighting just to use the right rotations to keep everyone alive. 100% HP the whole fight shouldn't be a goal. not 0% hp on the raid should.

For example:
An ele shaman has a certain spell that places a zone on the ground that increases the dps of anyone standing in it by 10%. 8 second duration, 5 second cooldown, 1.5 second cast. You have a small window to reapply to maintain uptime and then 5-7 seconds for all of your other needs. maybe channel a spell like penance to regen some mana. off heal, off dps, dispel, or place a HoT that increases spell haste on a single target for 8 seconds.

Sure it's not hashed out. but it would make fights more interesting on the whole to add that dynamic. Synergy would be crucial, and more varied raid encounters could result.

But most importantly, it would take the focus off of mini-maxing your personal dps to kill a boss, and focus it onto managing the encounters mechanics. especially if the fight wasn't scripted. Fights with random mechanics were so frustrating, but they also required fluidity within your team, and felt more rewarding once mastered.

tl;dr - I miss BC shadow priests.
I vote for 2...

No 3...

Maybe a bit of 4 and 5... with a dash of 1...

Wait, what about never-been-seen-before option 6!

I would love for my hunter's pet to main heal! That would be so cash...

Please let my Imp tank!

How about a mix of all 10!

4 Specs for everybody and a chicken in every pot!

Did I mention... you should get rid of all talent trees?

Marmalaide...I like Marmalaide...



That's what reading all these responses sound like to me... just a grab bag of random thoughts that don't really deal with a.) how underlying game design got us to this place where everything just feels sort of lumped together and b.) how unless you change fundamental design on how combat and PvE encounters work, it's not going to matter what "path" Blizzard choose and c.) it's doubtful Blizzard is going to incorporate this feedback for Mists....

The dye is likely already cast and this is the kind of post GC should have put up 9 months ago, when there was a bigger chance that player influence would have mattered.

To add more diversity to the classes, why don't you try to give them more options, like, pure classes are all about "how" you like to perform a role, not which you like to perform.
So why not diversify within the role, because a healer mage or tank warlock, while mechanically doable, are lorewise ridiculous(maybe tank Combat Rogue?). What I mean is, experiment with things like a ranged DPS class getting a melee DPS spec, like a Beastmaster Hunter for example, who fights alongside his pet with a more primal fighting style and even duo attacks. Or a ranged DPS Rogue, with ninja-like shuriken throws, or a melee Warlock who instead of summoning a demon to fight alongside him, actually becomes the skullbashing demon.

Just an idea.
Model Two – Everyone has specialties and you match the spec to the situation.
I believe Model #2 is probably the best fit for all and offers the most flexibility or shall we say "customization on an individual class basis". Sounds like this model would also not take alot of effort on the part of the designers to implement than some of the other models like #5 while giving the players an advantage to suit a particular raid or encounter. Anyways, thank you for all your hard work and keeping the game interesting and whatever you do I'm sure it will be a good change for all.
Best Regards.
talk about broken roles....

How a hybrid class can que up as tank/healer, then need off-spec gear with their roll bonus
Very good ideas but i wonder devs checks them or not?
Here is why everyone wants to be a hybrid

Here, lets look at the loot table for Mannoroth.

Foul Gift of the Demon Lord Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Mage, Warlock
Pit Lord's Destroyer Druid, Paladin, Warrior, Death Knight
Mannoroth's Signet Druid, Paladin, Rouge, Hunter
Cowl of Highborne Sorcerors Priest, Mage, Warlock
Helm of Thorns Druid, Rouge
Legguards of the Legion Hunter, Shaman
Thornwood Staff Druid, Hunter
Varo'then's Brooch Druid, Paladin, Priest, Shaman, Mage, Warlock
Demonsbane Chestguard Shaman (only?)
Helm of Power Paladin (only?)
Spaulders of Eternity Druid (only?)
Annihilan Helm Warrior, Paladin, DK

most interesting thing to notice: Druid can roll on 7/12 items; 6/12 for Paladin
of other interest: Druids, Paladins, and Shamen *all hybrid* all get class specific armor

-----no wonder everyone wants to be a hybrid-------
You want to fix role Ghostcrawler?

First fix whats broke, make the classes even..
Even the playing field:
Adjust the classes- make some easier to play, some more difficult
Fix the loot tables so they do not favor any particular class/role except for heal/tank roles

Hero the Deathknight, like it was intended:
replace strength with runic power as a primary stat
Make Deathknight the hardest toon to master

Bring in another Hero class in Mists of Panderea
make the new class also difficult to master
A caster class maybe, but doesn't use Intelect

It's broke because you guys are treating hybrids as though they are the most important class in the game, when they really should have utility, as oposed to power and wealth (more drops) If any toon is meant to be OverPowered then it should be the Heroic classes, but only if it takes great skill to achieve.
I have 2 ideas.
1. DPS have the ability to mash up their specs, fire/arcane mages, etc. Hybrid class would have very limited ability to do this.
2. Modified model 5. Create a very different spec i.e. rouges have ninja, swashbuckler, footpad type specs. Warriors, archers, soldiers, barbarian. Remove many of the similar abilities to make play feel much different.

I love this discussion, but feel it is ultimately hopeless for me. I'm a dedicated WoW world PvE player. I'm not a big fan of dungeons, much less raids, and I HATE PvP. I don't begrudge others their raiding and PvP fun, but I am continually disappointed at how much design changes are almost exclusively aimed at eliminating every aspect of the game besides dungeon/raiding and PvP.

The vanilla model Ghostcrawler described was, imo, nearly perfect. Every class (hunter as my example) seemed to have a world PvE spec (beastmastery), a dungeon/raiding spec (marksmanship), and a PvP spec (Survival). Having leveled all 10 classes to level 85, I have experienced that all the classes had similar structures with a spec for each of the three principal gaming modes. This, imo, was perfect because it offered something for everyone in every class. I was happy because I always had a spec that was ideal for world PvE. The raiding/dungeoning crowd had a spec for their stuff, and the PvPers had a spec for their stuff. I thought the model worked brilliantly.

Now, unfortunately, the game has devolved (in the most derogatory sense of the word) into a vast hopper to feed nothing but raids and battlegrounds. I cannot think of a single significant change to any class in the last several major patches or expansions that was specifically designed to address a player concern that was not dungeon, raid or PvP related. The basic design of the game has changed to basically one of, "how quickly can we dispense with that pesky leveling and questing and hit 85 so we can start the REAL game of battlegrounds and epic raiding?"

Again, I understand many players feel precisely that way (probably most, making the business model of ignoring every other player to give them what they want the most successful model). And I don't begrudge them their raiding and pvping fun. I'd just like the game that initially got me hooked to make just a peep of a comeback.

Get us back to dedicated specs, please. Quit screwing up all three specs of every class to optimize PvP and/or Raiding issues, and leave at least one alone for those of us who really don't care about that. You've clearly had no problem ignoring the concerns of world PvE players in favor of content and mechanics redesigns for the PvP and Raiding crowd. How about you throw us a bone and give us a litte touch of the same?
As usual Gc and all the folks at Blizz miss the mark...

If you took a poll and simply asked folks what was the major issue with WOW, why is the pool of players shrinking... It would NOT be that one toon or class is OP or whatever.

It would be CONTENT, content, content.

Instead of a weekly buff / nerf fest to please a small group of 12 /yo's that want to pew pew lazer massive DPS everything...

Fix what IS broken and NOT worry about the "balance"...

If Blizzard put out new content RAPIDLY, new 5 mans, new or revised old content and new radis the amount of attrition of players to other MMO's would cease or be drastically reduced.

I feel that most people do not want to log in and relearn, respec, regear constantly and L2P all over again each patch, each expansion, ect.

Keep it simple stupid... CONTENT makes the MMO world go round...

Ignore the few OP cry babies, let the classes have roles like Vanilla and bring back the nitches and specialities of the DIFFERENT classes. They are called different classes for a reason, you, as the player have to make chaoices...

Some classes can do X great, but suck at Y... and so on...

Vanilla WOW made Blizzard a 15 million player masterpiece, not Lich or any other expansion.

Original intent was what made WOW great and different. Todays 'easy" button and homoginization of roles, classes and specs has ruined the game imho.

Make CONTENT, leave the classes alone or revert back to basic intent...

Wow is losing players not because of anything better, but because of all the "changes" for the sake of "change"... and the dreaded BALANCE.

Screw balance, bring back vanilla WOW and keep you players here because of new CONTENT, constant new CONTENT...

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