PvP How/Why Should It Be Balanced [LONG]

If it wasn't clear by the forums on blizzard's site, the even further lowered participation rates of arena, or personal experience, WoW's PvP isn't exactly in a good spot. Yes, this is said very frequently, but usually the Developers have something insightful to bring upon the issue, and hope is restored. However, this time is a bit different.

In this thread, I will be presenting a compendium of our grievances as the PvP body of the community. I will not slander anyone in any way during this, and I will try to be civil as possible. There will be a short summary after each section characterized by TL:DR, if you wish to read this quickly over examining the entire article, I would encourage you to use these summaries.

[ I. History and Background.]
This is a starter season of an expansion. If you don't know what that means, it's basically the first season of Arena/RBG combat tasted within the entire expansion. Previously, these have not gone well. (2.0) Season One may be the only exception, but only to the extent that nobody had any clue what was going on in arenas. (3.0) Season Five was represented by the monstrosities known as S5 DKs, Season Five Deathknights. If you weren't there, they were literally bosses of the arena and it was very difficult to surpass an accomplished rating without one. Season Nine (4.0) held many class imbalances that were mostly fixed in the following patch of 4.1. These are extremely short summaries of the seasons, if you wish for more detailed summaries I would suggest looking up "Season ___ Complaints".

How is this relevant? Well, this patch is very similar to 4.0. Many PvPers anticipated that the issues in 5.0 would be fixed in 5.1, as 4.1 did with 4.0. However, this was not the case. The developers actually made many changes that were not acceptable, nor even suggested by the community. These changes include but are not limited to: The Shadow Guise nerf, Conquest Gear Upgrades, Death Strike nerf (should have been limited to Blood Spec only), Beast Mastery nerfs when the class was stated as balanced after the hotfix bugfix of Stampede (There existed a bug that made Stampede do unexpectedly more damage in Arenas compared to other zones/areas) etc.

There was also a PvP Power buff to weapons that was suggested in order to keep PvE weapons out of PVP, however it was recommended to be implemented AFTER burst was corrected (this will be addressed later.) Instead, Blizzard actually gave damage dealing specializations a 10% overall buff with a PvP Power buffs onto weapons. This increased burst (which was already complained about frequently) in the same patch that brought nerfs to many healers.

Not only is our side of the game in a state of imbalance, but the many suggestions we have presented to the developers were completely ignored and replaced with changes that no one with a right mind would have fabricated.

TL:DR - Previous starter seasons (seasons at the start of an expansion) have gone poorly, and it was expected of Season Twelve to do so as well. However, many players campaigned for effective changes in 5.1 and were ignored only to be replaced with changes very few would have supported.

[ II. Class Related Grievances.]
In this section I will mention grievances present in 5.0, and whether or not they were fixed in 5.1. There will be no TL:DR and this is merely proof of what was asked, what happened, and the outcome. Notice: Tank specs will not be mentioned, along with specs that aren't fully supported by the players (Survival, Arcane , Holy etc.) If you would to add these specs in yourself, please have credibility and majority support with evidence in the format I use. Furthermore, only consensus statements will be added, personal statements will be omitted if they are questioned and brought up within the thread. Information will be presented followed by fixes from the 5.1 Patch.


It was believed that Druids had the most mechanical issues of any class baseline, these issues are examined below.
Symbiosis shouldn't have a place in arena.
Many unnecessary burst cooldowns were introduced into Druid DPS specs without much explanation.
NS cooldown is too short.
Displacer Beast cooldown is too short.
Typhoon's cooldown is questionable.

Fixes: None.
- Feral: Many believe that Feral had too many cooldowns, causing obscene damage.
Predatory Strikes producing instant cast cyclones that no longer take multiple globals to cast cause a questionable new found strength. Fix recommended is an internal cooldown when cyclone is used in conjunction with predatory strikes. This change is controversial.
Shapeshifting roots have returned to Ferals with no repercussions, this causes a melee class with high mobility, high burst, and decent/high survivability (due to symbio.)

Fixes: None.

- Balance: Only issue stated was a dependency to casting, my knowledge of Balance, and the discussion of it overall, is quite limited. If you would like to link a source/list a complaint/bring up a flaw in this spec, please say so below.

- Restoration: Most of Restoration's issues lie within the class.
Symbiosis bring too much survivability when paired up with certain classes for Restoration Druids, especially with the addition of Displacer Beast.
NS cooldown is too short.

Fixes: None

Many of Deathknight's issues also belong in the class.
General survivability while silenced is rather poor, especially for a class heavily affected by disarms as well.
Survivability in general is poor.
Mobility is near abysmal.
Damage can reach ludicrous amounts randomly. (Mostly Frost)

Fixes: This patch actually worsened the issues, Deathknights now have less survability while silenced (See: Death Strike Nerf) and random damage was increased (See: Weapon PvP Power Buff.)

- Frost: Damage can reach incredible values at the whim of RNG. Due to poor mobility and survivability, an address for this problem has not been conducted yet.
Many survivability issues that lie within the class.

Fixes: None.

- Unholy: Many Survivability issues that lie within the class.

Fixes: None

Hunters were pigeon-holed into Beast Mastery due to low damage output from the other specs.
Powershot was complained as something that never works.
Disengage stops if CCed in mid-air.
Widow Venom widely considered useless, it should be implemented into core shots.
Revive pet has an enormous cast time.

Fixes: Beast Mastery is no longer as powerful as it was before the patch, but neither are the other specs.

- Beast Mastery: Was considered much more balanced after the Stampede hotfix.
Was nerfed into oblivion regardless.

Fixes: Aspect of the Fox removed, Beastial Wrathed Pets are now CCable, Lynx Rush nerfed. Left the patch semi-balanced and now they're much weaker than before.

- Marksmanship: Damage was complained about due to low sustained from poor steady shots in PvP.
(Note: this is a stub. You can expand this by commenting on it in the section below.)

Fixes: Careful Aim and Steady Focus improved (See: 5.1 Hunter Changes).

Spellsteal considered mindless with no penalty.
Spells cast during Deep Freeze were accused of being as deadly as many classes with all cooldowns popped.
Too much CC with low cooldowns and high durations.
Too much mobility in addition with damage, burst, and survivability.
Glyph of Fireblast (Denotates the Frost Bomb on the target as soon as Fireblast is casted), along with damage from Frost Bomb itself is overbearing.
PoM in conjuction with Ring of Frost is just silly.
Alter Time should not be dispelable.
Counterspell in conjuction with Mage 4 set bonus (Reduces the cooldown on counterspell by 4 seconds) AND the blanket silence is considered overkill.
Coldsnap cooldown is too low (3 minutes).

Fixes: Ring of Frost cooldown increased, Deep Freeze duration reduced, and Spellsteal mana cost was increased. Burst remained unchanged.

- Frost: Burst during Deep Freeze is still considering some of the highest, even with no cooldowns popped.
Frost Bomb hits too hard...simple as that really.
Many class issues.

Fixes: Ring of Frost cooldown increased, Deep Freeze duration reduced, and Spellsteal mana cost was increased. Burst remained unchanged.

- Fire: Many class issues.

Fixes: Ring of Frost cooldown increased, Deep Freeze duration reduced, and Spellsteal mana cost was increased. Burst remained unchanged.

Nothing to protect themselves against CC outside of rolling to Line of Sight (LoS) and Mistweaver's Dematerialize.
Note: Many Monk issues are spec specific and not a lot of consensual changes can be presented due to lack of knowledge for this new class. In addition, true power is unknown.

Fixes: Controversial fixes. WW got some much needed buffs and Quality of Life (QoL) changes while Mistweaver was damaged heavily by nerfs aimed at raid healing Monks.

- Mistweaver: Hit extraordinary hard by 5.1 MW nerfs (See: 5.1 Monk Changes.)
Weak to CC with almost no protection against anything that isn't a stun.
Dematerialize's interal cooldown (10 seconds) is too low, HOWEVER, this should not be changed until they get more protection against CC.
Life Cocoon should not be dispelable.
Weak against dispels.
Mistweaver 4 set is reported as glitchy, the success rate is random.
Fixes: They were already one of the worst healers in arena at the time and were only hurt more by Blizzard with no remorse. The only compensation they received for nerfs aimed at raid healing monks was a Life Cocoon buff.

- Windwalker: Fist of fury is clunky (fix by allowing movement during the channel.)
Jade Fire Blossom is clunky (fix by making the risk vs. reward greater.)
Was considered weak in terms of burst and sometimes in sustained damage.

Fixes: Many QoL fixes and buffs. This was probably the only spec that left the patch in a majority favorable state.

Overall CC is far too much.

Fixes: None

- Holy: Overall CC is far too much.
Sacred Shield ramp-up is unnecessary.
Eternal flame either shouldn't be dispelable or good amounts in the first 10s then slow down.

Fixes: None

- Retribution: Overall CC is far too much.
Burst is too high (due to a large amount of cooldowns, and sustained is mediocre. Take away some burst, give back some sustain.

Fixes: Off healing was nerfed by the PvP Power Change. (See: PvP Power Spec Specific Change.)

Disc remains in the worst state it's ever been and this patch only worsened the spec.
Priests lost many spells with no compensation.
90 Talent Choice is questionable, not much reason to take anything else but Halo. (Cascade is sad, Divine Star WAS horrible.)
Shadow Guise was nerfed without warning, explanation, and no documentation. (the nerf is live yet it still hasn't been documented in the patch notes that were released eight days ago, nor was this change ever on the PTR.)
Angelic Bulwark shouldn't be dispelable.
Psyfiend is beyond mindless and broken.
Mind Control shouldn't have a cooldown.
Shadow Word Death Glyph shouldn't be major.

Fixes: Divine Star no longer sucks, Psyfiend was nerfed, and Mind Control's cooldown was removed, but the cast time was increased by one second.

- Shadow: Off healing was too high.

Fixes: Off healing was nerfed.

- Discipline: Output considered the lowest of all healers.
Survivability considered lowest of all healers.
Mobility considered lowest of all healers.
Amount of CC rivals the lowest with Mistweaver healers.
Mana capability considered lowest of all healers.
Offensive capability is questionable for the healer who should be the king of offense.
Glyphs aren't a choice, 2 are required, and many are old talents that we lost as they turned into Glyphs.
Lost a useful shadow word death.
Penance is pitiful.
Loss of Shadow Guise while stunned devastated the healer who can barely stand up at the moment.

Fixes: Focused will has made a comeback after being lost in Cata. Disc lost 30-40% worth of damage with the PvP Power Change. (See: PvP Power Spec Specific Change.) Priest entered 5.1 as the (considered) weakest healer, and came out of it weaker than before.

Survivability without Prep is questionable.
Vanish cooldown is too long.
Blind cooldown is too long.
Wound Poison considered too weak.

Fixes: Wound Poison damage buffed, Blind cooldown reduced, Vanish cooldown also reduced. Consider implementing some of Nahj's rogue changes.
Note: Since Subtlety is more/less the only Rogue spec widely used in arenas, rogue issues double as Subtlety's issues.

Purge Glyph (Purge now dispels two beneficial buffs from the target) is considered an abomination to the game and should be removed immediately, at least from restoration.
AS cooldown is too short.

Fixes: Totems are now magical spells. Controversial change.

- Elemental: There's is no counter-incentive for staying on an elemental the entirety of an arena match.
Damage outside of burst is considered laughing stock material.
Outclassed greatly by nearly every other caster.
Defensives are near nothing.

Fixes: Totem nerf. Off healing nerfed.
- Enhancement: Ability to stack cooldowns should be limited due to high amounts of sustained damage.

Fixes: Totem nerf. Off healing nerfed.

- Restoration: Burst healing considered far too high.
Utility against casters unrivaled.
Earth Shield shouldn't be dispelable.

Fixes: Totem nerf.

Blood fear is stupid, instance CC shouldn't have such a low cooldown with such a large range.
Demon Soul being undispelable was a questionable change.
Burning is extremely weak considering what it runs against.
Unbound Will's cooldown is far too short.

Fixes: Dark Soul becoming undispelable was a questionable change, no change to blood fear.

- Destruction: Chaos Bolt damage is controversial.

Fixes: Chaos Bolt damage taken away and put into a dot that applies after hitting the target.

- Demonology: Chaos Wave damage during Dark Soul was disgustingly powerful.

Fixes: Chaos Wave damage reduced by 33%.

- Affliction: Damage is too reliant of malefic grasp.

Fixes: None, consider Nahj's suggestion of a Glyph for Aff Warlocks.

Ability to stack cooldowns is unrivaled, many warriors beg for cooldown restrictions in exchange for more sustained to reach what the class was like in S8 (Lots of pressure, but only weak/moderate burst).
A large amount of defensives were added.
Second Wind in conjuction with defensive stance (25% damage reduction for nearly no penalty) is consider overlooked.
Shockwave's cooldown is far too low.
Disrupting Shout should not go through Aura Mastery esq effects.
CC from warriors in general was nuts.
[Arms]: Taste for Blood one shotting people is ridiculous.

Fixes: Taste for Blood nerfed in PvP, Disrupting Shout bug fixed, Gag Order removed, Intimidating Shout cooldown increased, Avatar no longer gives immunities to snares/roots. Many thought warriors were incorrectly fixed due to the fact that their burst can still occur at full throttle upon popping every single cooldown. This isn't fun gameplay for the Warrior, and this isn't fun gameplay for the person getting one shotted. The goal isn't the nerf Warriors into oblivion, it's to make them fun and viable without the ability to burst someone 100%-0% in a half second.
Note: Since Arms is more/less the only Warrior spec widely used in arenas, Arm's issues were included as a sub portion of Warriors.

General Grievances:
These are common complaints about the current metagame of PvP.
Viable Arena Dps Specs tend to have too much burst.
Instant CC (and CC in general) is considered too rampant.
Viable Healing Specs tend to have too much healing.
MOST IMPORTANTLY: Blizzard's communication with the community has been abysmal, if it was in a better condition, a lot of this displeasure could have been vanquished.

[ III. General Questions/Statements.]

Why should I care?
This hardly affects PvPers alone. The fact that Blizzard had the nerve to implement a large amount of these changes last second without our consent should have caused SOME paranoia in your well being. If this happened on one end, who's to say it won't happen on the other end?

If you don't like it, just quit and stop paying for it.
Said and done. But I have a question for this statement. What did I really accomplish? Sure I saved my own time, but if I wanted to save time, why would I have made this gigantic thread? It would be offensive for me to leave this community knowing damn well we didn't try our best to get Blizzard to listen. My sub is canceled, but does that mean I stopped loving the game? No, I'm still very passionate about this game, and still very passionate about giving Blizzard the chance to make this game the huge chance it has with the intricate PvP System they have set up. I know well what they're capable of, this thread is my resolution to give them the information they need to make this game better for the PvP community. If they decide they don't even want to try, that's the end of it. But if they need specific feedback founded by the general consensus? Here it is.
PvP is an afterthought, get over it.
I didn't realize your money was worth more than mine. Sure we play this game for two different reasons, but why the hell should you get to declare this statement? You're no more of a human-being than I am, and you don't pay any more than I do. If Blizzard actually states this statement 100% word for word, then sure that's the end of it. But it looks to me they're at least attempting to balance PvP, and they happen to hold tournaments for it. I'm sorry if it leaves a sour taste in your mouth, but we're both paying the same people to do different things. This thread's purpose is to give them the tools they need to do the job, not so you can whine that there are two different kinds of players who play this game.

I think you need a break.
Because I'm passionate about something? Fair enough, I'm taking a break as we speak. After this break will I care less about this game? I'll keep you updated on that.

[ IV. Closing Statements/Solution.]
I've given you the background of our dilemma, I've given you a compounded list of concerns for every spec that the majority cares about, and I've given you a fair share of my opinions on common statements. What's left? Our solution, and my closing statements.

TL:DR IN FULL! PvP vs. PvE is a playerbase concern that doesn't make sense. We pay the same developer for two different things, we shouldn't hate each other, we should love the game we both play. And if we don't, we shouldn't pay for it and we should give them ample feedback. That's all this thread was made for. Dispersing the clouds around two communities and giving Blizzard a chance to fix a portion of their game.

If you're interested in where I got most of my "Fix this!" ideas from, I'd suggest you visit Nahj's "dream patch notes list". http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/7273267323?page=1

If you're interested in filling out a survey of your PvP experience, I suggest you visit Reinhart's thread. http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/7199035257

If you're interested in the patch notes of 5.1, I suggest you visit Blizzard's 5.1 Patch Notes. http://us.battle.net/wow/en/blog/7922040/51_Landfall_Now_Live_and_Patch_Notes-11_29_2012

Fun facts:
  • It took me 5 hours to write and correct this.
  • There were over 3000 words in this compendium.
  • It was still worth my time and effort to make this in order to show you guys what our beef is.
  • Thank you for reading, and if "you" happens to be Blizzard, make sure not to disappoint. ;)

    Feel free to correct any of the thousands of spelling/grammar mistakes that I'm sure are bound to be in here.

    Special thanks to Pachy for the inspiration.
    Disrupting shout doesn't go through aura mastery now. Truer it vs a disc during inner focus
    Corrected, I was aware, just forgot to add it to the changes list. x_x

    Thanks much.
    what hat.
    I disagree with the idea that typhoon is too short of a cooldown. It's been around for years and the cooldown has never been an issue. If that was the real issue then you could argue that thunderstorm cooldown is too short (22.5 seconds with 4 set to typhoons 20). Nobody would really argue that because of ele's lack of defensive cooldowns.
    Typhoon is only now being considered as too short of a cooldown in regards to resto, and that is because of its use in conjunction with displacer beast. Increase that cooldown and resto druid survivability should be on par with other healers.
    How is ret CC overall far too much when we don't have any defensive CDs besides divine protection and bubble?
    Any comment within the grievances in based off majority opinion. My personal opinion has been omitted from any/everything in that section excluding possibly the disc priest section.
    The entire thing? Gee-zuz.
    +100 nice post
    I really enjoyed reading this post. It is a very good summary of what is going on. I hope someone with authority in Blizzard reads this post as it's very neutral and focusses on facts not biased qq. I used to PvE and PvP, but now I just PvE, still like the game, it's awesome, but very disapointed with PvP.
    Interesting how elemental was considered underpowered already and in 5.1 it was nerfed, whereas most other classes were buffed in some form if underpowered or nerfed in some form if overpowered.

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