Feedback: Priest Updates

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Community Manager
#1 - April 18, 2024, 9:05 p.m.
Blizzard Post

In this thread, we’ll be testing and talking about Priests in The War Within. Look here for posts from the development team as adjustments and bugfixes are made throughout the testing period.

Please note that off-topic or inappropriate posts will be strictly removed.

Thank You

Before we continue testing The War Within, we’d like to take a moment to thank everyone who read and responded to the Hero Talent previews we posted over the last few months.

Looking to the Alpha

In this first Alpha build, every single class has at least one new Hero Talent tree available for testing, with the rest coming in the following weeks. We’re asking testers to initially keep several things in mind:

  • There are UI elements on the talent panel that are placeholder, including things like talent icons, text, or final UI art.
  • Some talents may not be functioning yet, or may be marked as not yet implemented (NYI)
  • New spell visuals and audio for several new Hero Talent trees are still a work in progress. Many trees are using placeholder assets for now that will be updated over the course of Alpha.
  • There are some talents that are not fully tuned yet. This is expected, and we will implement tuning adjustments throughout testing.

The combat design team has two big areas of focus right now that we are prioritizing over other concerns such as tuning or generic class updates/maintenance:

  • Finish building the remainder of the Hero Talent trees that are not yet available.
  • Fix bugs that are blocking testing of new talents.

With the Alpha build being playable and all of the discussion that will occur around the flood of data, we wanted to reiterate that the responses to our blog previews were highly valuable. The feedback we received allowed us to make some early improvements or revisions while we didn’t yet have a public test environment. It allowed us to take some big early swings on certain trees, and then react to early feedback quickly.

Going forward, we aren’t planning to publish any additional Hero Talent previews in blog form, since we’ll add the remaining classes to the Alpha as soon as they reach their ready-to-test state.

Working from Feedback

Several Hero Talent trees have received changes after reading feedback to the blog posts. Some of these were tuning changes to ensure that the Hero Talent tree felt competitive, while others were significant design changes. The feedback thus far has been of great benefit to us.

Going into Alpha, we feel good about the shape of the Hero Talent tree designs. Keeping a consistent number of utility and defensives nodes across all trees, having parity between number of choice nodes, and the overall structure of the trees are things we’re confident in.

We’re also working on tweaking some core class designs as well. In some cases, it was necessary to make adjustments to the class or specialization talent trees before significant work was done on a Hero Talent tree. In other cases, we did work seeking to improve base class talent tree designs.

Alpha Feedback

Now that we’re in Alpha, we’re looking for feedback on how it feels to playtest these trees. We’re specifically curious about:

  • Hero Talents that you feel are “required” for your spec in a type of content, such as raiding or Mythic+, or that push you towards picking a specific tree.
  • Hero Talents that create frustrating or unsatisfying gameplay or rotations for your spec.
  • Hero Talents whose functionality is confusing, unclear, or difficult to track during gameplay.

Throughput comparisons of Hero Talent trees are helpful, but we’re more interested in gameplay, feel, and choice feedback at this stage. Also, when possible, we appreciate it when you focus posts or articles on a single spec and Hero Talent tree, rather than combining feedback about multiple issues.

Again, Thank You

We greatly appreciate all your feedback on Hero Talent trees and are very excited for you to see everything else we’re working on. Thank you!

The World of Warcraft Combat Design Team

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Community Manager
#3 - May 29, 2024, 6:48 p.m.
Blizzard Post

Hello, Priests.

We’ve updated the Oracle tree for this week’s build with a few changes. Primarily, we’ve updated Premonition to rotate through its spells only by casting Premonition. There is no longer an option to change the spells based on casting spells on the global cooldown. We like that players will rotate through the available spells and removes complications with choosing which Premonition to use after casting each Priest spell. We’ve also replaced the capstone with an effect that triggers all Premonitions at once after each have been cast. While this effect is not available immediately in combat, we feel that with 2 charges of the spell and the availability of a cooldown reduction talent there is space for the effect to occur during your activity of choice.

We’ve removed Prompt Deliverance, which reduced the cooldown of Purify. Oracle Priests can still uniquely use Premonition of Insight to lower Purify’s cooldown if needed during a clutch moment, but we’ve decided it’s better to keep the single target defensive dispel cooldowns aligned across the healers.

We’ve added a defensive node with a couple options for either improved self-healing or increased survival to burst.

We’ve back off on talents that could encourage Holy to use Power Word: Shield rotationally or Discipline to use Prayer of Mending rotationally. These talents effects are now focused on the spec’s more iconic spell.

Thank you for your continued feedback!