A Tauren Warrior protecting his land with a mace in hand.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Potential Changes, Arms



The following was posted by Celestalon today on WoW forum thread about Fury Feedback, but in it he dropped a ton of information on "potential" Arms changes.
"So, we don't often share our thoughts on upcoming changes this early, as plans can change very rapidly. Please keep in mind that none of the following is set in stone – it hasn't even been developed yet – and there’s any number of issues that could cause us to decide to take a different approach. That said, we definitely agree that Arms feels a bit empty at the moment, and want to fill it out a bit more, and we want to add some talent choices to both Arms and Fury that provide options for more involved gameplay. Here’s what we're thinking:
Rage generation increased by 20% for Arms.
Rend returns for Arms. Costs 10 Rage, deals damage over 18sec, with a burst of bleed damage at the end. Total damage is similar to a Mortal Strike.
Thunder Clap is usable in any stance. AoE damage and snares, 6sec cooldown. 30 Rage cost for Arms, free for Protection.
We’re replace the level 45 talent row (Staggering Shout / Piercing Howl / Disrupting Shout) with:
Varies by spec:
Arms – Taste for Blood: Passive. Rend ticks grant 3 Rage.
Fury – Furious Strikes: Passive. Reduces the cost of Wild Strike by 10 Rage.
Protection – Heavy Repercussions: Passive. Shield Slam deals 50% additional damage while Shield Block or Shield Charge is active.
Sudden Death: Passive. Auto attacks have a chance to trigger Sudden Death, making your next Execute free and usable on targets above 20% health.
Varies by spec:
Arms – Slam: Active ability. Costs 10 Rage. Deals 100% weapon damage. Each consecutive use increases Slam’s damage by 50% and Rage cost by 100%, stacking up to 2 times. Benefits from Mastery.
Fury – Unquenchable Thirst: Passive. Bloodthirst has no cooldown.
Protection – Unyielding Strikes: Passive. Devastate reduces the Rage cost of Heroic Strike by 6, stacking up to 5 times. Lasts 10 sec. No longer refreshes while at 5 stacks.
Again, this is all very much in the formative stages. Any or all of the above could end up changing in any number of ways. But we are listening, and are doing our best to make Warrior gameplay awesome in Warlords.
EDIT: As mentioned, lots of iteration on these early plans. Changed the +25% Rage gen to +20%, so that 3.6speed weapon swings generate an even 30 rage. Changed Slam's max stack count to 2, since Slamming at any point higher than that is a trap.
EDIT 2: Clarified that Heavy Repercussions does count Shield Charge as well.
EDIT 3: Oh, forgot to mention, Slam benefits from Mastery."

So in the bold we have the Arms specific changes, which as I wrote about earlier show that we are in fact getting slam back. The  change to the level 45 talent row, which to me makes no sense what so ever, they should have replaced the level 75 talents with these new ones. I am not anti stance dancing we have been doing it for as long as I can remember, even to this day we can do it in Siege of Orgrimmar for added survive-ability against Garrosh, my issue with the current iteration of stance dancing is that it is going to completely neuter DPS out put. Now to the pros of this change we get an interesting choice between Taste for Blood, Sudden Death and Slam, early on Taste for Blood could be the best option, especially since white hits are so slow currently on beta which means rage generation is equally slow. However if Rage generation normalizes with the 20% increase mentioned, the real choice will be between Slam and what essentially is our T16 4 piece bonus, I have personally enjoyed the T16 bonus game play wise but Slam could also be good depending on the base rage cost which was not given.

Rend comes back which I have actually missed for awhile now and Thunder Clap is now usable in any stance which gives 2 more abilities to use in our rotation.

These potential changes were put before I code type up my initial impressions of the Beta Arms so here are some notes so far.

In T16 normal raid gear, mobs in the first 2 zones are butter, however rage gen is an issue. I am getting 2-3 white attacks in before I have rage for an ability and by that point the mob is almost dead anyway, which hey makes me feel super powerful, but is not very fun. My second issue was the lack of abilities, which Blizzard seems to be addressing. Other than that the beta is amazing I said I wouldn't quest, but that didn't last long and to tell you the truth I am enjoying every bit of the story, even if we are lacking the pre-event to explain a little bit of the stuff. And the item squish on level 90+ content isn't noticeable, but I have not tried out my favorite solo farm run Black Temple, when I find a moment I will run it and report on how it felt.



Friday, June 27, 2014

Nothing Beta...



So first wave of Beta invites went out last night and I happy to say I got in, I look forward to testing out Arms in Beta and hope I get to play around with the new Tauren model soon. I am not going to focusing too much on quests or story during my beta time, mainly just getting a feel for Arms and Gladiator.

Stay tuned for more info.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

WoD Changes, Make Brian Hurt

Courtesy of MMO-Champion

Courtesy of data miners we have the following Warrior T17 set piece bonuses
 Warrior (Forums / Skills / WoD Talent Calculator)
  • Item - Warrior T17 Arms 2P Bonus Increases the damage of Mortal Strike by 10%. Slam critical strikes reduce the cooldown of Recklessness by 5 sec.
  • Item - Warrior T17 Arms 4P Bonus Execute deals 10% more damage to targets affected by Colossus Smash. Colossus Smash has a 50% chance to grant you the Deadly Calm effect. Deadly Calm reduces the Rage cost and cooldown of your Mortal Strike by 50% for 10 sec.
  • Item - Warrior T17 Fury 2P Bonus Increases the critical strike chance of Bloodthirst by 10%. Wild Strike critical strikes have a 50% chance to activate Enrage.
  • Item - Warrior T17 Fury 4P Bonus Raging Blow now generates 10 Rage. When you activate Recklessness, you also gain the Rampage effect. Rampage increases your attack speed and critical strike chance by 0% every second Recklessness is active.
The old bonuses in red seemed pretty standard, the latest build in green makes them a little bit more unique. However there is one very confusing change to the Arms 2 piece bonus especially after the most recent patch notes, "Slam critical strikes reduce the cooldown of Recklessness by 5 sec," Slam in the latest patch notes was removed. Does this mean we are getting it back to make or Alpha rotation 3 buttons or are these "new" set bonuses that were data mined older ones on the live alpha client and Blizzard has newer ones that reflect the most recent patch notes better?

I cant wait to get my hand on the Alpha or Beta and give Arms a real run through, hell in even a 6.0 PTR would be nice.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Arms Ability Pruning (So Far)

Today we take a look at the newest iteration of Arms in the WoD Alpha, note that I am not currently in the alpha so this will be an analytic break down of the patch notes.

Stance Changes:

Battle Stance - will now generate 100% rage from auto-attacks, and critical strikes will now generate double the rage. 
This change should see the rage generation issue that plagues warriors in earlier tiers normalize and make rage generation more fluid throughout fights.

Defensive Stance - for Arms Warriors generates 50% of the rage from auto-attacks as in Battle Stance.
This change should help normalize rage gen for Arms when stance dancing to Defensive for the damage reduction.

Beserker Stance - gone
Really wasn't needed anymore, especially when it lost its damage bonus in MoP

Warrior stances now have their own action bars again
This will make some of the changes below easier to mange as far as abilities and setting up your bars.

Ability Changes:

Battle Shout/Commanding Shout - now lasts 1 hour and Battle Shout no longer generates rage
Moves the buffs in line with other classes buffs, no longer needs to be worked into rotation as a rage generation tool.

Blood and Thunder - Removed

  • Deep Wounds - Protection only
  • Thunder Clap - Damage Increased by 50%, Arms and Protection only, Defensive and Gladiator stances only
This change will be interesting it will definitely effect damage output in AoE situations but only time will tell how much.


Slam - gone
This will change the rotation.


Colossus Smash - now costs 30 rage, deals 225% increased damage, no longer causes Physical Vulnerability and no longer increases the damage of slam.
Looks like this will replace Slam in or rotation.

Enrage - no longer available to Arms.
Loss of a periodic passive 10% damage boost, not to much of big deal.

Execute - now costs 20 rage and can use up to 40 rage to cause additional damage, usable anytime.
This is now essentially Arms new rage dump, it will be interesting to see how this scales. I was wrong Celestalon clarified that execute is back to an old school execute sub 20% use only

Mortal Strike - costs 30 rage, instead of generating 10 rage. Replaces Heroic Strike for Arms
The rage generation shouldn't be an issue with the rage gen coming from auto-attacks and this really gets rid of a spell that was used solely for dumping rage.


Rallying Cry - Arms/Fury only, requires Defensive Stance
Odd change, but gives Arm and Fury raid utility and leaves tanks their own CD for personal survival.

Shield Wall - no longer available to Arms and Fury
This change will affect survival but if healing and damage taken are changed like planned it shouldn't be noticed.

Sweeping Strikes - requires Battle Stance
Shouldn't change to much.

Whirlwind - requires Battle Stance, only available to Arms and Fury
Shouldn't change to much.

Hamstring - costs 10 rage and deals 20% weapon damage in addition to reducing movement speed, usable in Battle and Gladiator stances.
Could see this being used as a mini rage dump but I would need to play with it to see what this really does to a rotation outside of PvP.

Overpower - gone
A staple for Arms Warrior is now gone, the MoP iteration was was interesting, kind of sad to see it go added some choices in the rotation.

Sudden Death - gone
With the removal of Strike of Opportunity and Overpower this spell was essentially useless.

Taunt - requires Defensive Stance
Okay

Throw - gone
Now more ranged warriors...

Unbridled Wrath - gone
If rage generation is better overall this wont be missed.


Cleave - gone
Sweeping strikes plus anything else is better than cleave and was left unused.

Heroic Throw - generates 300% extra threat, has a 6-second cooldown (down from 30 seconds), but now has a 15 yard minimum range.
The reduction to the cooldown is to try and make up for the loss of Throw, but the high threat generation may prove difficult to manage for Arms Warriors

Recklessness - increases Critical Strike chance by 15% (down from 30%) and increases Critical Strike damage by 10% (up from 0%).
This is the merging of Recklessness and Skull Banner, even if it is a nerf to our current macro.

Shattering Throw - no longer reduces the armor of the target; now does damage and breaks immunities.
The removal of reducing armor of the target is inline with similar spells. They also made it a Glyph, so you will need to make choices in glyphing.

What this does to the rotation is essentially removes everything and leaves us with MS and CS for the fight until 20%, this is alpha so we should expect them to start adding abilities to give us a more complex rotation, because I personally dont want to be the next Arcane Mage. It will be interesting to see what changes to the talents are made and if talented abilities have CD reductions to make them apart of the rotations.

Mastery:

Strikes of Opportunity - gone
Blizzard reason, wasn't in line with Arms mentality of slow precise large hits.

Weapons Master - new mastery skill, Increases the damage of Colossus Smash, Mortal Strike, and Execute abilities by 20% ( increasing with Mastery)
This is likely and attempt to replace the passive damage boost of Enrage and the the damage loss of Strikes of Opportunity. Also helps guide what 3 spells are priority.

Bonus for us Tauren:

Brawn - new racial passive ability that increases Critical Strike bonus damage and Healing done by 2%
It's not Plainstriding but it is nice to finally bring Tauren in line with other races in-terms of combat racials.

There was a Dev note in the latest patch note (6/18/14): Developer's Note: Arms is still undergoing heavy revision and additional information will be made available later. So look forward to updates and new abilities.

Next up I will look at some Talent and Stat changes.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

When Blizzard Answers Your Question

SparkysShocker @SparkysShocker: In lore do Warriors have an organization/guild that they group under. Like the Argent Crusade or Ravenholdt?
CDev Response: The warriors of Warcraft lore are typically associated with the armies they have pledged their weapons to, while our warrior heroes (read: the players) are "lone wolves." Someday these fearless combatants might unite under a single banner and form the world's first warrior union, but that remains to be seen.

I asked this question 13 months ago, I tweeted it @Lore on his first week on Twitter, and it got answered in the most recent Ask CDev.

The easy answer is they already do, they unite under the Horde and Alliance banners, however what I am looking for is something more. A faction specific banner for each side because lorewise Warriors wouldn't set the arms aside to meet secretly.

I am looking for something in WoW to make me feel less a like a Mercenary and more like a true Warrior of the Horde (or Alliance). When I asked the question I asked the wrong question, I asked about the neutral class groups, what I meant were the faction groups.

  • Blood Knights/Sunwalkers - Silverhand
  • All the various race specific Rogue groups
  • Sunreavers - Silver Covenant
These are just a few I think of. The point is that after they stopped developing Class quests after I think it was level 50 and the fact that those quests are now gone there is as actually very little lore recognition of Warriors outside of key figures like Garrosh. So could the Warriors of the Horde (or Alliance) unite under a banner within their faction, or would they go the Rogue route and have groups based on their race.

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