Burst damage in Arenas
We definitely hear you that you think Arena burst damage is too high and it’s too difficult to heal. You don’t need to keep shouting. (Source)
Best gear rewarded througn arena
It’s certainly not a system for everyone. I personally don’t favor the arenas either, so I make the choice not to spend much time with them. I think the issue most people have is that the arenas provide the only source for the best PvP gear in the game. We are working on an improved system by which we can measure skill and contribution in battlegrounds so that more competitive rewards can be obtained via means other than the arena. (Source)
Horde always defending first in SOTA
Actually SOTA originally did start with the factions randomly attacking or defending. But there were issues with it; it wasn’t quite as cut and clear as it seems in theory. It turned out it worked out a lot better if Horde were always starting in defense. So the way it is now was a somewhat temporary fix to that issue. If it’s really not working out so well, of course we’ll be looking into reinstating the random start. (Source)
The content you’ve mentioned is all content that is meant to be an introduction to raiding in Lich King. It’s not meant to preclude people and set a false standard. That being said, we feel that the difficulty of the content is in line with the rewards. While you may find it to be a bit less difficult than you woud like, I assure you a great many others do not. (Source)
Same models used multiple times on Northrend items
Try to remember back to the Burning Crusade when players looked like multi-colored rainbows. Their gear was entirely mix-matched and there were many complaints about the experience and leveling in such garb. With Lich King, this problem has been largely eliminated. As you level, you collect gear that fits nicely together and helps to create a more whole look. (Source)
Learning Smelt Elementium
A solution should be available in a future 3.0.8 build. (Source)
Premades on PTRs
You should always assume that there will not be premades unless we specifically indicate there will be premades. (Source)
Patch notes and bugs
The patch notes tend to record larger changes to the way things work. We fix literally hundreds of bugs that don’t get incorporated into the patch notes. This one was just a bug.
Yes, big games have bugs. It’s true. Blizzard titles tend to have fewer than other types of software. (Source)
“I believe during the beta you said you paid more attention to “certain end-game guilds” than to the bulk of the playerbase.”
On very specific issues, yes. I would trust the feedback of a highly rated gladiator or a realm first guild leader over someone whose skill and experience are unknown. But it works the opposite way too. Very hardcore players can sometimes suggest very hardcore solutions. (Source)
The issue wasn’t that Bone Shield was too strong per se. It was that when Bone Shield was down, the DK died. Just buffing the DK without nerfing Bone Shield would make them the best tank in the game. Bone Shield was also making them too defensive in PvP, which was much harder to get good testing on during the beta. (Source)
Feral AoE tanking
You’re not making a terribly fair comparison here. Warriors can block etc., true, but Ferals have Barkskin, Survival Instinct, Demo Roar and Enraged Regen as defensive abilities. You have Swipe and Berserk (and the nice Maul glyph) for area threat generation (and I still see bears pulling with Hurricane too).
I do think it is a fair concern that you can spam nothing but Swipe, but to fix that for other tanks we put a cooldown on their AE ability to force them to hit something else. I’m not sure we want to do that for druids.
While you may think of yourself primarily as a bear, we still think of you as a druid. Druids have a lot of abilities. I have played a bear (a lot) and I know it’s already hard to fit all of your buttons on the default Blizzard action bars, even just considering the bear ones. Now I’m not going to suggest you Innervate or use Rebirth or Regrowth while tanking, but at the same time, even bear MTs do sometimes use those abilities. They still count as abilities. When you pick a tanking druid, you are still a druid. We don’t want any class to have 300 spells just because they can use them in very different scenarios. Make sense? (Source)
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Changes to armor trinkets
There will probably always be a best in slot item. The difference is that Offering was insanely better than the alternatives, to the point at which you either sucked without it or were OP with it. Greatness is a nice trinket, but can you do your job without it? Absolutely. We’re talking about degree of best in slot here.
Would it be possible to have more choice in feral gear?
I agree with that overall, and it is something we’re working on. By the same token however it is very easy to take your argument and say “There will always be a best in slot item. I will always want that item. Therefore choice is always an illusion.” (Source)
“Ifs its too tough to do given you only have HP,Armor, Dodge to work with, maybe its time to talk about other ways to scale ferals.”
We are. It probably won’t be defense, block or parry though. (Source)
Druid forms update
We are working on an update to druid forms. It is long overdue. But we want to do it right, which means it takes time. The Ravenlord and Epic Flight Form models are the level of quality we are shooting for. We’d even love to add some customization, but we can’t promise that. (Source)
Hunters concerns and potential changes
I would agree that some of them fall into the quality of life or minor annoyance category. While those are still good things for us to look at (and sometimes great things since they can often be fixed pretty easily) it leads to a long list, which you even called a manifesto. An outside reader might conclude every aspect of the hunter class is broken (which is not true) or that hunters need all of those changes to be Arena viable or fun. I’m not asking you to cull out the minor suggestions, but you do want to make sure we see the ones you really, really want us to see.
On combining Viper and Cheetah, I would be concerned that you are accepting a penalty (decreased damage) that isn’t really a penalty. When you want to run away, you want to run away. Think of the PvE implications of removing the daze. Even think of the PvP ones. When you want to fight, you fight, and when you want to escape, you escape. Now consider a Cheetah where you take extra damage if you run – now that is an actual decision. You might get away, but you also might get clobbered. (This isn’t a change we are making – I’m just trying to show you how we think. Hitting a situational button should generally be a decision, not something you would always do in a given situation.)
We’re not interested in giving hunters stealth of any sort at this time. Even the Shadowmeld-like functionality is supposed to be handled by Feign Death.
We’re also pretty unlikely to remove the minimum range on hunter ranged attacks. Casters don’t have them, but casters are also very unlikely to stand there and keep casting when you close to melee with them. We don’t want to see hunters ever ignore or shrug off melee who are attacking them. Attacking them back is a different story, as long as we could guarantee the hunter felt like they had to attack their attacker and not just keep shooting whoever they were shooting. (Source)
Spirit Walk is supposed to break roots and snares on the wolves and the shaman. I know we’ve had a bug on that. I’ll need to do some research to know if it’s fixed. (Source)
1. Yes, it is too low on live.
2. I can’t speak towards the PTR specifically. It takes awhile to create a build, so they are often a few days (or longer) behind our changes. I can say that in our internal testing all of the changes together gave Elemental something like a 10 to 12% dps increase for Naxx 25 geared characters in full raid buffs. Elemental dps should be very close to Balance druid dps, which we used as the standard we wanted to reach.
We discussed several of the concerns that have come up over the last few days and ran some additional tests, but we are still satisfied with the numbers produced by the new changes. (Source)
Bevelton, the reason you’re not seeing changes yet is for exactly the reason you suggest. We don’t want to tweak a few numbers here and there. We are taking a comprehensive look at all three trees of warlocks and then we plan to unleash all of the changes at once. The downside of this approach is that the work takes longer to complete.
I know there are a dozen threads swearing that THE PROBLEMS ARE OBVIOUS and THE SOLUTIONS ARE OBVIOUS and DEMAND CHANGE NOW!1!!. What should be obvious is that we don’t think the situation is that cut and dried. I did post fairly recently (within a month or two perhaps) on what we thought the major warlock issues were. Players seem to have a hard time finding it or perhaps they are just impatient.
We don’t consdier things like tweaking glyphs and changing Ritual of Summoning as major changes to the class. We don’t expect to see a huge difference in how you play the game. They are just small quality of life issues. The Felhunter glyph was just a bad glyph — a trivial amount of dps. It was a relatively easy thing to fix.