- 2009/03/24 05:22:40 PM
Hi again everybody
The developers have answered a few more Mage related questions and concerns. Again, some of you may have seen this already elsewhere, but in case you have not, you can find it below:
Q: The irony of the the frost pve comments, is that fixing frost is easy. You just need to increase its damage and increasing the damage of frost bolt and the duration of the water elemental are both safe from a pvp perspective. Its the obsession with shatter combos, ice lance and possibly deep freeze thats stopping progress here.
A: Usually when Frost mages give us PvE feedback, it’s because they want to do shatter combos in PvE. For many Frost mages, that is what makes the spec fun for them.
Q: WE DO NOT NEED 3 PVP SPECS,
A: We understand some players feel that is a superior design. WoW used to be designed much closer to that model. More recently, we’ve come around to a new design where individual talents more than whole specs are more useful for PvP or PvE. This is a course correction for us though, and it’s going to take some time to fully realize that change. Frost has a lot of control and escape mechanisms specifically designed for PvP. We do not feel now is an appropriate time to tear the tree completely apart. We’re making adjustments where we can, and we have made PvP changes to Fire and PvE changes to Frost. We will continue to improve that.
From our perspective, there is always more we want to do with the game. There are always things we think we can improve. We can understand how individual players sitting at home might think “If they want to fix it, why don’t they just fix it.” But there are literally hundreds of things like that we want to do. We made a lot of changes for 3.1 (and we have some more to go) and we will continue to make changes as the game goes along.
To all players who think Frost MUST be PvE and to all of those who think Frost MUST be PvP only, please do remember that thousands of players disagree with you. :)
Q: When hearing "we know you're broken, but we no longer plan on fixing you" is just plain demoralizing.
A: Can Frost mages raid? Of course. Is your dps 2000 below a Fire mage? Probably not. When you say we no longer plan on fixing you, that is an exaggeration. There isn’t a thing in the game that we think is done. We can improve *everything.* So when we say “Yeah, we would like to fix that” you can apply it to just about every feature in the game. You shouldn’t turn that into “ZOMG Blizzard ships broken games.” As harsh as you guys can be on our design, we promise you, we are harsher.
Q: It's more than a little annoying how arbitrarily, randomly and inconsistently Blizzards "rules" actually get applied from situation to situation. You imply that you don't necessarily want to give a personal benefit to imp scorch, citing the example of a warrior using battle shout because it's still a massive DPS increase when solo.
A: The solution is stop trying to use our rules to argue for buffs. That is a very popular strategy among players, but it’s always going to be fraught with peril. You are better off addressing where you think your class has problems, and not trying to appeal to some kind of WoW constitution. Don't look for loopholes. There are times when it makes sense to compare two abilities directly and times when it does not. You don’t really need to worry about that. We balance your class around the totality of your gears and abilities. If locks are crushing you in damage meters, then we will fix that. You don’t need to argue that the problem is the rules work differently for locks and mages. That isn’t really germane to the discussion.
Q: Believe it or not, the overwhelming majority of the Mage class that posts are avid theory-crafters and experienced players. Go visit the Mage forums, i can guarantee you find a substantially larger amount of number generating than any other class forum.
A: You are just going to make other classes angry with assertions like this. They probably aren’t true, are difficult to verify, and aren’t really relevant. Being better at theorycrafting does not make you more deserving of buffs.
Q: I don't really care for all the QQ. But, we should really stop dancing around the issue. The spirit to crit conversion on Molten Armor is a nerf. On live Molten Armor gives 5% crit with the glyph. At the end of Ulduar gearing, with full raid buffs, we'll have the 5% crit back. So, for fully geared 25 man raiding mages it's probably a neutral change. For 10man raids, 5 man groups, solo play, and pvp, it's a nerf. For arena it's probably neutral since you are frost and using ice armor.
A: The way we set up the numbers, you should have more than 5% crit with Ulduar gear. There are mages now with “normal” Naxx gear (by which I mean they didn’t try to do anything really unusual or creative with gearing) that have more crit now with this change than they did before this change.
Q: I just can't believe that this Dev team, who made Ret Pallies feared, Survival Hunters viable, and the Improved Firestone talent worthwhile, can't possibly make Frost Mages viable in PvE.
A: We can, but it will take time. Prot warriors and paladins, Holy priestsâ€¦ there are several specs that have traditionally not been taken seriously for Arenas. We apologize if you are impatient, but there are 30 specs in the game, and that’s only if you count each tree as a whole spec. Players also tend to be very intolerant when we bork PvP balance (and understandably so) by bringing up specs that traditionally were not competitive.
Q: Their design goals are simply much longer-term than I'm willing to accept.
A: Yes. This. We knew it was risky giving the players an advanced look at some of the things we wanted to do with 3.1. Our goals were lofty, and we didn’t accomplish them all. We’re not sure we will do a preview like that again. We fear the negatives (e.g. anxiety when we don’t deliver) outweight the positives (e.g. providing information and giving players a window into our design goals).
Q: All we wanted was a reason why Locks deserve 30% damage from spirit while mages do not
A: Because they are balanced around that. If we gave mages 30% damage from spirit, we would nerf your damage in other ways. If you think your damage is low, argue that point (and some players are doing that). But we are not going to be very sympatheic to arguments that you need 30% damage from spirit just because another class does.
Again, we are totally sympathetic to mages who felt like they lost their spots to warlocks in Sunwell. That was bad. We do not want that and do not intend for that to happen again. We think though it is way too premature to say that is happening or will without a doubt happen.
Q: You set up expectations when you say "We're gonna make spirit a better stat for mages." That expectation isn't "My crit is going to go down, and now I need spirit to feel less screwed."
A: We were very clear that we weren’t going to just do “30% damage from spirit” so that mages dps suddenly went up by 20% or whatever. We said “we are going to make spirit better” not “we are going to buff you.”
Q: Mages were promised that with the release of Wrath
A: We don’t make promises. And when we do, we are being dumb. :)
Q: If Molten Armor is seldom used in PvP, and you've now nerfed it more (the first nerf of course being the change to impact) why retain the passive Crit reduction? This seems like something that would be far better suited for Ice Armor, or even Mage armor. It is really only useful in PvP, but this armor is now almost entirely useless in that space, making the crit reduction wasted.
A: We think you guy are reading too much into this. We would love for Molten Armor to be used for PvP. However, we would also love for Spirit to be more useful to mages. The solution we chose was to make Molten Armor scale from spirit. Fixing spirit was more important than Molten Armor in PvP, at least at the present time. Some players are again trying the “loophole strategy” of saying “Well if Molten Armor isn’t for PvP, you need to remove the crit reduction and replace is with something that improves our dps. Woohoo! Free buffs.” We felt better about nerfing Molten Armor in PvP knowing that you had another PvP armor you could still use if the loss of Spirit-powered crit was too big a penalty.
Is that ideal? No. Like we said, ideal would be to have Frost mages doing the same dps as Fire mages in PvE. Ideal would be Combat as a great PvP spec and Prot paladin Gladiators. We'll get there. If you try to make every change you think the game needs every patch then you create a lot of bugs, have very long patch cycles, and give the player base whiplash.
Q: I think the big road block to Frost is that the Dev's see it as very strong on 98% of the Mobs in the game, including the trash. So the fact that it's worthless against the other 2% doesn't concern them. Even though that last 2% is seemingly all that matters in this game in so far as PvE goes.
A: That’s a bit of an exaggeration, but it does illustrate the problem that if you have a spec with exceptional crowd control and the same damage as a spec without crowd control, then why use the second spec? I'm not saying that is an excuse for Frost dps being low in PvE. But it is a risk.