- Aug. 30, 2012, 5:12 a.m.
As you can imagine, things have been pretty busy, so forgive us for not getting to these questions sooner.
We first wanted to update you with several tuning tweaks that we made recently that are not showing up correctly on your client tooltips (either beta or live). We wanted to document these so-called "stealth" buffs and nerfs to aid theorycrafting and avoid any confusion. We hope to get updated tooltips to the client soon (tm).
I should also note that these are very typical of the kinds of changes we make at this stage in development now that everything else has stabilized. We're not making more changes than normal, but just trying to document them better.AoE damage adjustments
-- Sweeping Strikes now deals 50% of the triggering hit’s damage to an additional nearby target, down from 100%. Arms’ cleave damage was extremely high.
-- We reduced the damage dealt by Glyphed Ice Lance to a second target to 40% of normal damage.
-- Warlock sustained AoE damage was significantly too high, across the board. We reduced the base damage multiplier on Fire and Brimstone from 45% to 35%, and reduced the damage of Seed of Corruption, Felstorm, Wrathstorm, Harvest Life, Hellfire, Immolation Aura, and Void Ray by 30%.
-- We reduced the damage of Divine Storm by 25%. Retribution Paladins were significantly too high on sustained AoE damage.
-- Frost Death Knights needed a boost, so we increased the damage of Howling Blast to secondary targets up to 80% of the primary damage, from 50%.
-- Chain Lightning now deals 17.5% less damage to the primary target, but chains 80% of the damage to each successive target, up from 70%. This should help spread the damage better, and also reduce the damage against a single target. The total damage remains the same, when glyphed.
-- We increased the damage of Hurricane by 7.5%. Moonkin sustained AoE damage was too low, and we also wanted to emphasize Solar’s dominance over Lunar for AoE.
-- We increased the damage of Mind Sear by 30%. Shadow sustained AoE was significantly low. It should still be preferable to multi-DoT on a few targets, but this should make Mind Sear a more attractive option against larger groups.
-- We increased the damage of Swipe and Thrash by 6.5% in Cat Form. Ferals were a bit low on AoE damage.
-- Rogues needed a rather significant boost to their sustained AoE damage. We opted to give that to them in the form of buffing something that was previously primarily there for utility, not damage, by a very large amount, turning it into a major damage button. We increased the damage of Crimson Tempest’s DoT by 700%.
-- Beast Master AoE-focused pets were extremely overpowered for sustained AoE. We reduced the damage of Froststorm Breath and Burrow Attack by 50%, and increased their costs from 20 to 50. These pets should still be a sustained DPS gain to use, but not quite so absurdly so.
-- We increased the damage of Spinning Crane Kick, Rushing Jade Wind, Crackling Tiger Lightning, and Chi Torpedo by 10%. We also reduced the period and duration of Spinning Crane Kick by 25%, and made it affected by melee haste.Single target damage adjustments
-- We increased the damage of Ice Lance by 12.5%.
-- We reduced the damage bonus to Frost Strike on Threat of Thassarian from 50% to 40%. Dual-wielding Frost was a bit higher than two-handed Frost.
-- We fixed a significant bug that was affecting Frost Mage damage. Frostfire Bolt was not benefitting from Frostburn (Mastery). After fixing that, we brought their DPS back down by reducing the damage boost that the Frostbolt debuff provides from 8% per stack to 5% per stack.
-- We reduced the damage increase to spells from Dream of Cenarius from 65% down to 50%.
-- We reduced the attack power buff of Rabid from +50% to +25%. BM hunters needed to come down a bit, especially in burst.
-- We had previously buffed Snake Trap's appalling damage, but it was high enough that hunters might have started using it in single-target rotations, which wasn't intended. We reduced the melee damage of the snakes by 75%.Tank survivability adjustments
-- We were concerned that Blood DKs were too susceptible to spike damage. Blood DKs rely on being able to take damage and then heal it back, despite taking the largest hits of any tank. This works fine most of the time, but strings of unavoided hits or really large hits in a row might have presented a problem. We chose not to reduce damage taken, but to increase their maximum health instead. The stamina buff from Blood Presence from +8% to +25%.
-- Brewmasters were proving extremely strong because they could maintain Shuffle as much as they wanted and Purify a very large amount of Staggered damage. Additionally, despite being very avoidance-heavy, they also were taking very smooth damage, since Stagger blunts so much of the attack’s damage. We reduced the base Stagger amount from 30% to 25%, and reduced the bonus energy regen provided by Stance of the Sturdy Ox from +30% to +10%.Miscellaneous adjustments
-- We increased the duration of Glyph of Mind Spike from 6 sec to 9 sec.
-- We increased the healing of Chi Torpedo by 25%, but Chi Torpedo and Expel Harm no longer cause Eminence. As mentioned before, the general principle here is that spells and abilities which do both damage and healing are balanced around the healing they do, and don’t need to do additional healing through Eminence.
-- While we feel the damage of the warrior's Dragon Roar is balanced with the other two talents, the length of the stun feels gratuitous and helps prevent targets from being able to use defensive abilities. We're reducing the duration of the Dragon Roar stun to 0.5 sec, but changing its diminishing return category to the random / proc stun.
-- Finally, we were worried about mage mana regeneration at level 85. Arcane in particular works better when it has the advantage of the level 90 talents. Once Mists is released, Arcane will be able to perform fine while leveling up and running the occasional dungeon. However, we're in this rare "lame duck" period where players are still actively running what will very soon be lower level content (i.e. Dragon Soul and the 4.3 dungeons). As a temporary measure, we've doubled mage mana regen across the board to 2% per sec up until level 85. This bonus will start scaling down by 20% per level between 85 and 90.
There may be additional band-aids we need to apply (to any class) to account for the fact that the game is now largely balanced around level 90. The game systems need to function at all character levels, and they will, but most players will care a lot less about level 85 balance in a few short weeks.
If you believe any of these buffs, nerfs of changes to be inappropriate, you're welcome to share your feedback, but you will likely need stronger evidence than a link to the latest output from Simcraft or other simulations. :)