Let's analyze this statement. "Block capping and mastery too good..." Uh huh. "Tank balance close enough..." Okay. "In 5.0 we will change.." Uh huh.
"Warriors and paladins are too good even though tank balance is close enough to warrant no overhaul at this time. In 5.0, there will be a major change on that issue."
I appreciate GC's candor. I now know which toon I can delete to open up a slot for my monk toon.
C'mon now. The pointed sarcasm isn't necessary, and I think you may be missing what was actually said. This will not stand, y'know, this aggression will not stand, man.
Still, it's probably best that I convey a clarification:
What we said was that with the various changes we have made in 4.3 that tank balance is pretty close, and to be fair, it was also close in 4.2. Death knights in 4.2 may have arguably been harder to play well relative to other tanks, but they still tanked all of the content successfully, and some of our 4.3 changes are intended to ease the difficulty of tanking in that spec. The problems with block capping don’t at all mean “warriors and paladins are the best tanks.” That might be the case if we didn’t adjust things like DK armor, but we did. It might have meant that we would have to buff DK armor (or something) through all of the remaining 4.x raid tiers to keep up, but there are no more 4.x raid tiers.
There are a more problems when one stat is too good aside from players with that stat simply becoming too powerful. When any one secondary stat is too good, then players understandably view any gear without that stat as “garbage.” DPS specs can stack hit / expertise to the cap and then focus on say haste, crit or mastery. Right now, plate tanks don’t have a lot of attractive stats after they have capped mastery, except for dodge and parry which also affect pushing hits off the table the same as mastery does. Dodge and parry aren’t even meaningfully different from each other, except for the (somewhat sophisticated) games you can play with trying to avoid diminishing returns.
In 5.0, tanks will care about hit and expertise, because those will become survival stats: if your hits don’t connect, you won’t have the resources needed for some of your defensive abilities (the less critical ones like Shield Block, but not Shield Wall). That alone will make tank gearing a little more interesting. If we decrease the amount of block, or the value of a point of mastery, or add diminishing returns to block, then we can still make mastery a useful stat without it being the god stat. Heck, we’re probably in a place with tank balance today where we could reconsider having bonus Stamina or armor, which we stopped doing a couple of years ago because they were the previous god stats.
But it should be evident from that wall of text, that we’re not talking about simple changes here. They are fairly extensive changes with a lot of risk. There is a risk players won’t get the memo and not understand that block capping either isn’t as good as it once was or isn’t viable at all. There is a risk that paladins and warriors go from being relatively balanced to too weak. There is a risk that in our noble attempts to fix them from being too weak (such as buffing their armor, health or cooldowns) that the might become too powerful. We’re signing up to take that risk in 5.0 when we have more time to iterate and collect feedback and massive class changes are more expected.
We'd also like to make these really big changes in a context where more players are likely to become aware of them - that's much easier to accomplish at the beginning of an expansion because most everyone is looking around to find out what's changed. Why would we do that? It might surprise you (since you guys are, by definition, the posting community) to know how few players actually participate in these forums or can even be reached by blue posts. Many players simply stumble upon changes, or worse, get yelled at by other players for not being up-to-date on the latest class changes, and get frustrated -- which isn't great for anyone's experience.