#1 - 2011/01/07 12:00:52 AMFirst off, I must say that I cannot agree with all of the proposed warlock changes. Normally I frequent AJ, as the post quality is much higher, but I felt obligated to make a post here and analyze the reasoning behind these changes as well as their implications.
In addition, I understand these proposed changes are only on the PTR, which is not live yet, which is why I am not overreacting.
Altogether, I have seen countless posts of raging, flaming, and crying, but posts of that quality are not going to convince anybody of anything.
Particularly, these changes need to be looked at from the standpoint of other classes, and evaluated in their relation to multiple classes.
Drain Mana Removal: Altogether, I don't consider this a huge nerf in and of itself. Good warlocks were always capable of creating pressure without Drain Mana, and it can be a problematic mechanic.
Soul Swap 15 sec from 10 sec with Glyph: I can legitimize this change, as Warlocks could spread their dots quite quickly, and 15 seconds still leaves SS as a very strong spell in and of itself. Given the UA nerf, I give this change much less legitimacy, but that is discussed below.
CoEX reduction to 30%: In its current form, CoEX is a spammable 30(35 glyphed)yd range snare that was as strong as many melee snares such as hamstring and infected wounds. It felt a little bit strong, but given the large number of melee gap closers it was hardly noticeable. The problem is, it feels really strong against rogues and ret paladins, yet warriors have so many gap closers and ferals can shapeshift infinitely out of it, so those classes barely felt its effects. In addition, unlike hamstring or infected wounds, it can also be decursed.
That being said, CoEX is one of the best ways to relieve heavy double melee pressure, but feels a little too strong given its range. Given the warrior charge / intercept change, a change to CoEX makes sense, but I think there are more constructive ways to change CoEX without making it 30%. A change of its range to 20 yds (25 glyphed) would be a decent change, as warlocks do not have a root effect, and so a strong snare (50%) is not inappropriate. If Blizzard believes CoEX to be too strong in its current form, I'm not sure why there was no mention of frost nova / shattered barrier / improved cone of cold / Water Elemental nova in the notes.
Unstable Affliction Silence Duration 3 seconds instead of 5: I would have to say this has me the most puzzled. In WotLK, damage came so fast that a 5 second silence could often lead to a kill, especially a hard swap to the silenced healer. Dispelling UA was a calculated risk, as its damage was also quite severe. In Cata, with much larger healthpools, a 5sec silence and almost negligible damage make the advantage of dispelling UA (and consequently all other warlock DoTs) vastly outweigh the detriments. In addition, the difficulty of getting casts off now that all melee have interrupts (another mechanic neglected in the patch notes) make UA even harder to get up, yet easily dispelled. Most warlocks who play arena at a high level currently will tell you that most healers are simply ignoring UA as it is, dispelling it without thought. Resto Shamans are particularly guilty of this, the combination of Cleansing Waters and dispel already leaves affliction warlocks doing next to no damage. Combine this with the removal of drain mana and the fact that UA dispel silence is only 3 seconds yet Cleansing Waters remains untouched, and I find very few legitimate ways for an affliction warlock to cause pressure against a resto shaman, whether it be 2s, 3s, or 5s. Most healers I know were expecting UA to receive a buff because as is, it is barely doing its job of protecting Warlock DoTs. Altogether I guess I find this change, in lieu of the fact that other relative mechanics remain unchanged, completely unacceptable.
Feel free to discuss and post relative comments, but please refrain from trolling, flaming, or degradation.