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Regional FlagWhy Druids are FrustratedSource
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Saviodrood
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#1 - 2011/02/18 03:45:00 AM
First of all, thank you Blizzard for making so many good games. I only buy your games. SC, Diablo and WoW are more than enough to satiate my appetite for gaming and I am happy. So, because I love you so much, I will make a constructive post without marring it with ridiculous accusations but still address some issues that are relatively poignant.

The Druid forums are on fire right now and even the tanking and arena forums have had a lot of accusations of “Blizzard hate feral” or other such nonsense but I wanted, as a player to try to explain what these posts fail to get across due to their anger and irritation overriding their rational ability to communicate and what you can do to make us feel a TON better with very little effort

The overarching theme of all of our complaints and frustration is that we feel forgotten (by both CMs and devs).

First, why we feel as we do about the Developers:

1. Low Level Tanking--When Cata came out, there were countless changes and it was obvious that a lot of thought had gone into class design all around. 3 out of 4 tanking classes were given excellent, very powerful tools to help them breeze through low lvl dungeons and hold agro from heirloomed mages and warlocks. Low lvl dungeons are not like Cata dungeons. Warriors, DKs and Paladins almost never stop running while they are in them. We can clearly see that thought went into their design so they could do their job. Feral has no such tools. I shouldn’t have to explain how horrid feral tanking is before lvl 81, because I am confident that you already know it since it is your game. We feel like you put thought into the other classes and then just skipped us entirely.

2. Feral PvP—Many classes complain about PvP and nerfs, but the reason it hurts us feral so much is that through our entire existence, we have never been a good class that you would want as your partner in arena. We were always overshadowed by the other melee classes. For a SHORT time at the beginning of Cata, we were strong in large part because our bleeds were stronger than they were in Wrath. In response to this, not only was the bleed problem fixed but we, as a pvp class, lost so much utility that we are now in a worse situation than we were in the 3 previous expansions. In addition, we felt that our most unique abilities were the ones being targeted. Mangle is not unique and bleeds are not unique. But shapeshifting is who we are. But the reason we felt so frustrated about this was how easily it seemed to us that the decision was to throw it out. We made posts with more than 100 pages of feedback that are still active today but we have heard only a vacuum from you regarding this complete change of our spec and our identity.

3. Bear threat—The reason we feel frustrated, primarily, is that in the first patch of cata there were 2 obvious conclusions to be drawn from bear tanking: our single target threat was too high and our aoe threat was too weak (both are relative comparisons to the other 3 tanks). We expected fixes. However, it really irked us that you were so selective in choosing what to address. ONLY our good point was addressed and our bad point has been left untouched even though virtually every player will admit that in a dungeon, you better be EXTRA careful with your dps if your tank is a bear because bears are weaker than the other 3 tanks at holding multiple mobs even if they do everything perfectly. It removes a lot of fun to be thought of as the “gimpy” one especially if there is nothing you can do about it (it also discourages us from tanking which then hurts everyone because of the tank shortage). Again, this can be dealt with by begging the dps to take it easy on you but it is no fun to know you are the only class that has to beg like that. Sure, Cata has less aoe tanking and more CC, but there is no reason for 1 tank to continue to be significantly weaker than the others when the difference is so obvious.


Now, about the Community Managers—Please, please post something about any of the 3 above issues. Make us at least know that Blizzard is aware of them and that you have the desire to do something about it. Studies have shown that people rate their doctors not on how well they diagnose but on how well they show that they care. It’s the same for us. Just tell us that you know about them and are want to do something to fix them. They are 3 issues that have been discussed a TON (feral pvp has had countless posts and an ongoing threads now numbering in the hundreds of page of posts). We don’t want to FEEL ignored anymore and you CMs and do so much with just a very short post.


I think I will leave it like that. I hope you remember how much I love you and your games. I’m not gonna stop playing but I do want you to know why I and many others (there are not a lot of feral players so when you see us post a lot it indicates a lot of ire on our part) are feeling frustrated right now.

I hope you choose to respond in this thread as I kept my promise to discuss a poignant topic but kept the discussion respectful and free from juvenile threats or accusations.

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EDIT: Seems like everyone is in agreement with my bear arguments. Regarding argument #2, warriors have received some attention in the dps forum http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/2057305923?page=4 that is rather interesting. Warriors are in a slightly better spot than feral right now due to the fact that they don't need as much up-time as we do, they have 4 gap closers per minute as that thread points out, and charge is unambiguously superior to feral charge because it stuns the target which allows you to at least do SOMETHING before he can get away. Feral charge only moves you and is easily blinked away from or rooted away from before we can get any hits off.

Warriors from Wrath till now have lost some mobility and gained some (heroic leap and their "new skill" in the next patch. Feral have only lost...and we were worse than warriors to begin with.

I don't plan to attempt to fully explain why ferals are hurt more by our shapeshifting nerf than the other classes but you can read a thread that is still going at 101 pages here: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/1869409947. PvP utility is complicated because a melee class needs more than just "gap closers", there are also all of the other skills such as magic shield that help. Also some melee classes require more uptime to do damage and bursty damage is better in PvP. We are the least bursty and require the most uptime of the melee classes. Feral was designed from vanilla beta to have our shapeshift ability which is why we did not get the ability to get back into stealth easily and get another opener and why our "charge" doesn't stun and why we don't have magic shield. Removing shapeshift without redesigning us the rest of the way is like a surgeon opening a patient but not finisheing the surgery. We need Blizzard to finish what they started with us or at least close us back up rather than leaving up open and under anesthesia that is starting to wear off....

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Community Manager
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#152 - 2011/02/23 11:05:11 PM
Hey Saviodrood, first off, I wanted to say thank you for taking the time to put together a constructive post. It's always appreciated. We also acknowledge that there have been a lot of other constructive posts such as these and have continued to read them and pass along feedback. Keep in mind that we don't look at the amount of pages a thread has, and one with more replies does not always necessarily indicate its value, but we do read as much as we can and take in the constructive feedback as it comes. Also keep in mind that our participation in good solid threads can sometimes have a negative effect and essentially "corrupt" what was a very good discussion as others join in the attempt to get "blue" attention for their particular thoughts and ideas. It's a catch 22 that we try to keep in mind as we take on different threads and read through them.

That said, I asked Ghostcrawler about your points and have some information to share in return.

To your first point, we do think this is a legitimate concern. While we spend most of our fine-tuning at max level, we also want things to feel good at lower levels as well.The new bear AE rotation was based around Thrash, which is a high level spell. It works at high level, but without Thrash there is a lot of down time and it can be hard to AE tank. Since lower level dungeons don’t tend to be balanced on a razor’s edge, AE’ing is the norm, which can feel bad for lower level druids. We do think this is a problem and we’d like to address it at some point in time.

On the second point, we’ve been over this issue quite a bit, but the core issue is that Ferals used to not have a lot of utility in PvP, but were also really hard to control. We watched as players told us over the years that they wanted more utility so that they could actually be a valuable member of their team, so we gave Ferals a lot of utility they didn’t have before, but in turn we thought it was fair to make them slightly easier to control. We realize there are a few different ways we could have gone on this and that some players would no doubt have preferred to keep the iconic ability to not be crowd controlled instead of gaining things like an interrupt and better crowd control of their own.

On the third point, we just don’t see this issue at level 85. All four of the tank classes seem to be performing well in both 5-player dungeons and in raids. We see all four tanks being used at a variety of levels. We just disagree that the difference is that obvious. Savage Defense might make bears take more damage on AE pulls in 5-player dungeons than other tanks, but we don’t think AE threat generation is a problem (again when in reference to max level). Bears don’t have an ability that mimics Shield Slam as a very hard-hitting ability that can help establish initial threat, but that is more of a raiding problem in encounters with frequent spawning adds and not really an issue with Swipe or Thrash.

All of this said, and as we've mentioned before, we are keeping a close eye both on what is being said on the forums and what is happening in the game. We take in a lot of information from a variety of sources and keep it in mind for changes we make or changes we put into consideration. We're not blind to concerns that are being expressed, but sometimes we just don't agree with all of them and are seeing something different on our end. Sometimes we agree with the concerns and just haven’t figured out yet how we want to resolve the problem.

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Community Manager
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#185 - 2011/02/24 12:06:00 AM
Q: out of interest, would this have been before, or after a lot of us lost 6% AP when 4.0.6 fixed Protector of the Pack?


Here's a quick answer for you: We slightly buffed Maul and Mangle to make up for this potentially missing AP.

(I'm still reading through additional comments and remarks so may not get to anyone else immediately.)