Post-Blizz-Con Wrap-Up, Part 2

In the last post, I ranted about time travel and lore. This time, I’m going to talk about some of the mechanical changes that were announced at BlizzCon.

Stats, Reforging, and Gear

There were a lot of different gear-related changes that I’m lumping together in this one category because they’re all somewhat related.  It’s hard to say which is the “biggest” or “most important” of these changes, because several of them are (literally) game-changing. So we’ll go through them in no particular order.

First, gear will no longer have a specific primary stat.  If a piece of plate drops, and you’re in Holy spec, it’ll have intellect and stamina as its primary stats.  If you switch to Retribution or Protection, the item will suddenly have strength and stamina as primaries.  This is a pretty huge change, because it basically makes the big three primary stats irrelevant on the bulk of gear.  Every piece of plate, leather, and mail will always have stamina and whatever primary stat your spec uses.  In some sense, it consolidates strength, agility, and intellect into one flexible primary stat.

I don’t think many players will argue that this is a bad thing. You’ll automatically have up-to-date gear for all of your off-specs, so hybrid classes aren’t punished as much for wanting to be fluent in more than one spec.  The gear may still not be ideal because necks, rings, cloaks, and trinkets will only have secondary stats, some of which are only relevant to certain specs. But it’ll be a large improvement over always using last-tier’s gear for your off-spec, especially since you’ll have current-tier set bonuses.

We’re also getting a few new secondary stats, with the major three being Amplify, Readiness, and Multistrike.  These should work much the same way the Siege of Orgrimmar trinket procs do.  Readiness is just the cooldown reduction effect we’ve seen on trinkets, and will apply to a select few abilities based on your spec.  Adding X% multistrike will give you two chances (X/2% each) to do an additional 30% damage (or healing) with each attack (or heal).  And X% amplify increases your crit and multistrike multipliers as well as giving you X% more haste, mastery, spirit, readiness, and armor from gear.

It’s worth noting that all three of these stats can be considered “tanking” stats.  Readiness gives you more frequent access to cooldowns like Guardian of the Ancient Kings, Divine Protection, and Ardent Defender.  Multistrike works on healing as well as damage, so while the details are still a little vague, it’s likely that it will work on effects like Seal of Insight and Eternal Flame.  Sacred Shield is a little dicier, but it could be made to work by simply having a chance to apply multiple absorb bubbles; it’s just not clear whether it will or not.  Amplify is obviously a tank stat because it gives you more of everything: haste, mastery, armor, readiness, as well as larger crits (for Eternal Flame) and larger multistrikes.

Armor is also making a return as a secondary stat on specific items (namely necks, rings, and other non-plate gear), so we’ll have another secondary stat to throw into the mix.  I didn’t lump armor in with the “major” three simply because armor isn’t really new.  It’s still nice to have it back though, armor was always a powerful stat even though it’s passive.

Having four new “tanking” secondary stats is good, because the other bombshell piece of news is that four secondary stats are being removed entirely.  Hit and expertise are gone, making juggling the hit and expertise caps a thing of the past. I predicted we’d see a change to these stats, but I didn’t anticipate both of them disappearing because it would reduce the number of possible stats on gear too much. But the addition of three new stats more than makes up for that.  Also note that while bosses will still have a chance to parry attacks from the front (so that melee DPS still have to stand behind them), tanks will have a passive that bypasses that effect. So as a nice little side effect, the “tank expertise” penalty is going away as well.

I didn’t expect dodge and parry to be completely removed for similar reasons, though I did expect a change. But again, given four new secondary stats to play with, we really won’t end up missing these two.  It’s worth noting that the dodge and parry mechanics aren’t going to be completely gone – we will still dodge and parry attacks passively, we just won’t have the ability to stack them via secondary stats.  It’s likely that we will still build up dodge and parry over the course of an expansion through our primary stats just like we do today.  So strength will essentially be our avoidance stat, and we won’t have to worry about choosing it since it comes on gear by default.

Of less concern to tanks, they’re changing the way that DoT snapshotting works.  In short, it won’t snapshot anymore, it will dynamically update the tick amounts based on your current stats.  This will mean that specs like Affliction Warlocks won’t be quite as skill-dependent, because your DPS won’t drop as much if you accidentally re-apply DoTs a little too early after buffs wear off.  That’s good and bad – good if you think the skill differential between an average Affliction Warlock and an expert one was too big, bad if you didn’t think it was large enough.  Since I don’t get enough time to play my Warlock enough to keep in practice anymore, it’s arguably a buff for me, so I’m not too worried. But I can see how some Warlock mains might be peeved.

Again, while it’s not of that much relevance to us, it’s worth discussing how the new mechanic will work.  The tentative model I overheard during BlizzCon discussions is that every DoT/HoT will have its usual fixed duration, and we’ll just get partial ticks at the end.  So for example, let’s consider Eternal Flame, a 30-second HoT that ticks in 3-second intervals. If we have 20% haste, those ticks will occur at 2.5-second intervals (3/1.20), so we’ll get 12 ticks instead of 10.  If we increase that to 25% haste, the ticks will be 2.4 seconds long (3/1.25=2.4), so the first 12 ticks will take 28.8 seconds.  Then we’ll get a partial tick at 30.0 seconds that will be half-strength (because it will be a 1.2-second long tick rather than a 2.4-second long tick, and 1.2/2.4=0.5).  Presumably Sacred Shield will work in a similar fashion.

With the changes to hit, expertise, dodge, and parry, they’ve also decided that reforging isn’t necessary, and have removed that in 6.0.  This sparked mixed reactions from the players I spoke with.  Sure, we don’t need it to maintain hit and expertise cap anymore, or to balance our dodge and parry ratings.  And the changes to DoT/HoT snapshotting will get rid of most (but maybe not all) relevant haste caps in the game.  But reforging still narrowed the gap between a well-itemized piece and a poorly-itemized piece of equal ilvl.  That has its advantages, especially when it comes to allocating loot in smaller raids.  I’m not sure reforging absolutely had to go in this environment.  But it seems the decision is that keeping reforging just isn’t worth the hassle when its impact is so marginal.  It’s not a decision I’ll argue against, since I don’t have strong feelings about reforging either way.

They also talked about having fewer gem slots on gear and paring down enchants to cover fewer slots, though with more options for each slot.  That means the level of customization we have on gear will be going down a little bit.  Whereas now, we can stuff every socket full of haste gems and use haste enchants to rack up an extra 8% haste or so, we probably won’t be able to do the same thing in Warlords of Draenor.

Tanking Mechanics

One of the most significant announcements is something that wasn’t actually said outright, but merely implied. You see, one of my predictions was that all tanks were going to move to a “DPS tanking” model similar to what Monks, Druids, and now Paladins use.  And while I don’t remember them explicitly addressing that topic (maybe they did in a panel that I’ve forgotten), they almost didn’t have to. The removal of dodge and parry from gear itself was enough to guarantee that such a transition was happening.  The fact that all of the new secondary stats have a clear impact on survivability as well as damage output just further reinforces it.  So we can expect to see big changes to Warrior and Death Knight mechanics once 6.0 goes into beta to embrace haste and crit as true survivability stats.

It’s not clear yet whether every stat will have to have a tanking impact.  For example, right now Paladins don’t benefit much from critical strike rating unless they take Eternal Flame, and even then the impact is fairly small.  It may be that crit rating will still be our dump stat in Warlords of Draenor.  But it wouldn’t take much to make it at least a contender.  If Seal of Insight were able to crit, that would give crit rating some baseline value.  We could also get a secondary mechanic to help bolster it – something like a small HoT effect when certain spells crit, for example.  We’ll just have to wait and see what Blizzard decides on that front, I guess.

Vengeance = VICTORY!

There is, however, no question as to my favorite change.  While it wasn’t announced outright during the convention (again, maybe it was during the Q&A and I just missed it, but it’s doubtful), it came out during discussions with developers at the after-parties.  While I got a chance to talk with a few devs in various degrees of detail at BlizzCon, I wasn’t the only one, so I don’t feel bad about sharing it.

-Vengeance changed to increase tanking abilties, rather than pure AP. He wants Tank DPS to be roughly 75% of a DPS’ output.

Is it tacky to declare victory? Because we’ve suggested exactly this solution several times before.

In all seriousness, this is a huge change for a number of reasons. Mel and I have been blogging about vengeance for a long, long, long, long time.  Many of the more blatant problems have been cleaned up by hotfixes along the way, but some of the core problems remain.  One of those is that our DPS as tanks depends sensitively on taking damage.  That makes our damage drop off during off-tanking periods unless we play awkward taunting games to keep Vengeance high, and more importantly it makes playing through solo content infuriating because we do so little damage.

When 80% of your damage comes from having a raid boss nearby, dailies become an infuriating exercise.  I no longer even think about doing dailies as prot, because for an entire expansion now, I’ve had to switch to Ret to be even remotely efficient with my time.  And as I’ve mentioned in earlier blog posts, the feeling of loss of control over your own DPS potential is somewhat demoralizing, because it takes control away from a role that is obsessed with having control in the first place.

This change reverses all of that.  If our default output is nearly 75% of a regular DPS class, we’ll actually be able to perform solo content in a sane amount of time.  The only concern I have is that we may be too strong in PvP situations, but maybe that’s intentional.  Players have been bemoaning the inability to PvP as a protection spec, so maybe this will bring that back.  And anyway, it’s not like balanced world PvP exists anymore.

I’m ecstatic about this change for another reason: I’ll finally be able to evaluate my performance easily with logging sites again.  It’s incredibly annoying to realize that you have absolutely no idea what DPS you should expect to be able to do on an encounter.  You can compare to other guilds’ logs, but there are so many variables involved that the comparison is nearly meaningless.  Your DPS swings drastically with a number of different factors, including your guild’s strategy and which of your tanks happens to be tanking first.

Un-linking Vengeance from DPS fixes a lot of that, which means I can finally make more useful comparisons between myself, my co-tank, and other tanks.  It will also make tank DPS balance a little easier to achieve on Blizzard’s end, because the range of AP values over which the five tanking classes need to be roughly equivalent just became a lot smaller.

Looking Forward

There’s really no connecting thread that links all of these different ideas, so it’s hard to come up with a conclusion for this post.  The best I can do is to say that there are a lot of different exciting and awesome changes coming in Warlords of Draenor, and you should be as excited about it as I am!

Even though I think the story is sort of hackneyed, the mechanics changes are great and foreshadow what will likely be the the best expansion for tanks yet. We’re getting many of the significant changes that we’ve asked for during MoP: a less frustrating and more functional version of Vengeance, consistency between the stats we want and the stats that show up on our gear, the removal of boring stats like dodge and parry, the elimination of the tank expertise penalty, and much more.

That’s not to say there aren’t changes we can still hope to see.  I plan on vigorously campaigning for Holy Wrath to lose/modify its meteor effect so that we once again have a functional many-target snap aggro tool.  And Meloree will tell you that the game still lacks a good mechanic to tie DPS to tanks, completing the DPS-Tank-Healer trinity.  That role used to be filled by threat, but I think that ship has long since sailed.  But it’s hard to look at the wealth of other quality of life and toolkit improvements we’re receiving and not be very pleased with the direction Warlords of Draenor is taking.

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34 Responses to Post-Blizz-Con Wrap-Up, Part 2

  1. Basoli says:

    Without Vengeance-boosted dps, will off-tanks have to hold back their threat at all times? I tank on a prot warrior with a blood dk, so my dps isn’t in question at all, but once he gets a little vengeance I can go back to normal. If tank dps is roughly equal, is not-attacking my only option to not pull threat?

    • Theck says:

      Ideally, that shouldn’t be a problem. If both tanks are reasonably similarly geared, then they should produce threat at roughly the same rate. And remember we still get a +3x modifier on threat generation immediately after a taunt. If there are problems with taunt swaps, they can always extend the duration of that debuff for another 3-5 seconds.

      Beyond that though, yes, this will bring back the days of tanks having to play well. You can’t coast by on Vengeance-based threat and run a sloppy rotation, or your co-tank with a good rotation is going to pull aggro back off of you. I think that’s a good thing, personally, provided that it’s a long-term thing and not a short-term thing.

      In other words, it was sort of stupid that your co-tank would rip threat back off of you in 3-5 seconds due to lucky crits and Vengeance imbalances. But I think it’s completely legitimate for them to pull threat over 15-20 seconds because they’re just performing better than you, and that performance lets them slowly creep up and overtake you. The former is just bad RNG, the latter is an incentive to play better.

      • Zapelm says:

        tbh, I hope for some sort of threat bonus for the current tank . Obviously bad tanks should be out-threated, but I like something that let the estabilished aggro stay unless taunted off.

        If I’m playing to help some flexi raid, pairing with an undergeared co-tank friend, it can be quite annoying having to continuosly throttle my moves in offtank switches, far worse than a quick re-taunt on the occasional lucky-vengeance-powered crits. IMHO in general it is preferrable to focus on boss mechanics and enjoy your rotation than being distracted looking at threatmeters.

  2. I’ve said this before, but it doesn’t hurt to say it again – Blizzard is NOT ruining the game, making worse with each expansion. They are genuinely interested in trying new things to fix old and current problems – best intentions, benefit of doubt and all that. WoW has gotten so complex, it’s hard to fix one thing without breaking another – but they try, and the final result is usually net gain.

  3. Pre 5.4, building a off spec set was very time intensive and this change to stats help lower the barrier for people who want to try an off spec.

    • Theck says:

      I’m really enthusiastic about being able to swap to Ret spec and automatically have current-tier set bonuses. My ret gear is always one tier behind nowadays.

  4. Geodew says:

    “Presumably Sacred Shield will work in a similar fashion.”

    If it does, it will still have haste breakpoints. :-/

    Suppose the last full tick occurs at 29.9 seconds for a 30,000 absorb. Then, 0.1 seconds later, you get an absorb for 1,000. Whether that 1k REPLACES the 30k, or only gives the buff if the remaining absorb is somehow less than 1k (you got hit in that 0.1 second timeframe), either way it is somewhere between nearly useless and harmful – not nearly as great as a small tick on a HoT (like EF) would be, which would work almost like a 31k heal. The Sacred Shield effect is NOT almost like a 31k absorb.

    • Jackinthegreen says:

      I expect they’ll have enough foresight to revise abilities to make them compatible with haste. But if they don’t then we’ll just have to remind them that we are devoted to making sure our benefits from stats are in line with what the stats are actually supposed to do.

    • Theck says:

      I was envisioning the last tick being additive – i.e. you could have multiple copies of the SS buff on you at one time. You’re correct though, with its current mechanics it would have fairly noticeable haste breakpoints.

      Luckily, we’ve got plenty of time to make a stink about it and make sure that gets fixed! 😀

  5. Jackinthegreen says:

    I’m not too keen on having six secondary stats. That’s 15 combinations of 2 and each armor slot tends to max out at about 8 possible drops to keep the loot tables sane. Expanding the loot tables even more to accommodate the combinations could cause burnout when people are looking to get their BIS. The issues of warforged+gem socket+tertiary stats might also exacerbate the problem. There’s only so long that a carrot can be held in front of a player before the player wants to scream bloody murder.

    There’s also the problem of balancing six stats, especially for DPS. If Blizzard wants to tighten things up for Mythic and such then they’ve really got their work cut out for them to make sure each spec can perform and that each stat is useful to at least someone.

    If they cut things down to 4 or 5 universal secondary stats then they’d probably be doing well. 4 stats would mean 6 combinations of 2 while 5 would be 10 combinations of 2. In either case they can still provide some tough choices on gear if a perfect combo isn’t available, but it won’t be ridiculous like with the 15 combinations from 6 stats.

    • Theck says:

      I take the opposite side of the BiS argument – I think things like warforged, tertiary stats, and RNG gem sockets will help break people of the silly notion that they should be aiming for BiS gear in the first place. There are too many morons out there that will pass up a substantial upgrade because it isn’t their BiS piece for that slot.

      Example: I took a lot of heroic warforged gear with dodge or parry on it the first few weeks, just because the stamina and armor upgrades alone made it worth taking. My raid progresses faster if I take those upgrades and let the first few haste/mastery pieces go to Ret paladins.

      Also note that we have six secondary stats right now: hit, expertise, haste, mastery, dodge, and parry. All we’re doing is replacing hit, expertise, dodge, and parry with amplify, multistrike, readiness, and armor.

      • Jackinthegreen says:

        I do hope the random trifecta and new stats are enough to break people of the BiS mentality, but I’m pessimistic about it. Hopefully the guide writers and such that haven’t already stopped using BiS terms will stop, but I’m also pessimistic bout that too.

        Our current gear and stats have 7 secondary stats (I’m adding crit into the mix since it can appear on gear even if prot doesn’t care for it) which normally results in 21 combinations of 2. However, since haste and crit are mutually exclusive with dodge and parry that takes things down to 17 possible combinations.

        Compare that to WoD’s system where regular armor which could have 15 stat combinations and then the non-armor pieces could have 21 with the addition of armor.

        But I suppose the good news is covering all six stats would only take 3 items, or 4 on non-armor stuff so that the best stat for a spec could always be on something, even if it’s paired with the worst stat. I find that somewhat appealing because if there’s a combo of 1st and 6th best on an item then another might have 2nd and 3rd best and thus be better and it would drive some people crazy because an item with the best stat on it isn’t itself the best in slot.

        • Çapncrunch says:

          The only slots I’m particularly interested in BiS lists is trinkets (and mainly for my dps classes). Simply because all the different variations of proc vs on-use vs icd vs rppm vs stacking effects vs primary stats vs secondary stats etc causes the relative value of trinkets between different classes/specs to vary so widely that it can be difficult to tell at a glance how good a trinket really is for you.

  6. Daniel Pittman says:

    Aside from anything else, taunts currently have a huge threat generation boost. You might find that your co-tank needs to weave in taunts to avoid threat loss to the other tank, but I doubt it will cause substantial trouble overall.

  7. Angelflavor says:

    Not that Crit is totally worthless for Prot Paladins, but do you think they will add anything to make crit better for us?

    • Theck says:

      I talked about this a little bit in the post, but yes, I suspect they will. It may be something as small as allowing Seal of Insight to crit. Crit would still be our last-place stat in that case (probably, anyway, I obviously haven’t done any calculations about that yet), but it wouldn’t be completely worthless.

      That said, there’s no guarantee. They may decide that each tank only gets a benefit from a few of the secondaries, so crit might be the odd man out for paladins. I sort of doubt that though, especially if it means that haste is the odd man out for some other tank. The haste discrepancy is something they really need to fix (again), but for warriors this time.

      • Dalmasca says:

        Celestalon tweeted the other day that they would like to reduce the delta between all secondary stats for every spec. He noted that Haste for warriors (Prot, in particular) is a big outlier, but Crit for Prot Paladins would also qualify.

        I suspect that any mechanic they hook into Crit would be relatively passive, simply because the other secondaries already interact heavily with paladins’ active mitigation spells. I agree with Theck that something like SoI being able to crit could work well for this purpose.

  8. TenGen says:

    “I’ll finally be able to evaluate my performance easily with logging sites again. It’s incredibly annoying to realize that you have absolutely no idea what DPS you should expect to be able to do on an encounter.”

    Forgive me for saying so, but I’m overjoyed to hear you say this. Every time I look at rankings per fight and see myself at 40-60% of rank limit and have no (concrete) idea how other tanks have 100k dps on me I die inside (raid strat, vengeance whore, dps meta/cloak, better raid dps overall…, so many factors come into play and it’s so hard to pin it all down). I ranked in the top200 of EVERY fight in Cata, I can’t have suddenly lost all ability to play my class effectively could I?

    • Theck says:

      Well, you could have… but it’s far more likely that others are just gaming Vengeance to get those numbers. It’s one of the reasons I haven’t really cared much about parses since MoP. For the most part, they only have much relevance the first few weeks when you need to play carefully to kill the bosses. Once you overgear, it becomes a game of “who’s guild is willing to use crazy strats to prop up their tank’s DPS for parsing,” which is something I’m not interested in bothering with.

  9. Keres says:

    This does make me wonder a couple of things, like the potential value of the secondary stats. Value meaning stat weights. Granted much too early to speculate, but will bliz try to balance the stats benefits themselves so that we can have multiple gearing possibilities, or will each tank have say 1 “go-to” stat, 2-3 “ok stats” and the rest junk.

    Time will tell I guess.

    • Theck says:

      I think it’s going to be very difficult to make all 5 of them equally attractive. There will always be a handful that are more attractive. The hope is that the spread isn’t that large though, so that a higher-ilvl piece with a less-optimal stat can still be an upgrade.

      • Çapncrunch says:

        I have somewhat mixed feelings on that. It seems kind of boring if the stats are close enough that any higher ilevel piece is an upgrade, because at that point the stats stop mattering and the only number that matters on gear is ilevel. Sure itemization will still play a role in determining which items from the same ilevel/tier are better, but if the stats are already so close in value then the differences between equal ilevel items are going to be negligible anyways.

        Sure it doesn’t exactly feel good when an item drops and it’s not as good the lower ilevel piece you already have, but I think that helps make the other items that are upgrades feel that much more worthwhile. Plus, with the removal of role-specific gear (at least for armor pieces) that means that there will be more people interested in each piece of armor than currently, so maybe it’d be a good thing if every item wasn’t an upgrade for every single person simply due to ilevel.

        I don’t know, there probably isn’t a perfect solution. But as long as the best vs worst stats are on a spec by spec basis rather than a role by role basis, I think it’s ok for there to be a decent gap between the top and bottom stats.

  10. TenGen says:

    For me it just leaves me feeling like I’m letting my guild down somehow (since I’ve been doing 10s this xpac and “tank dps matters more there”) or that I’m really, really botching something (or many somethings). I wish WoL showed mean and median dps for an encounter and not just the rank limit for the top 200 parses. Especially since WoL had trouble parsing some fights correctly for many weeks. I’m just glad I’m not the only one looking at WoL and unable to get my bearings easily.

  11. Sofie says:

    I hope they put the Avengers Shield proc on crit. The current dodge / parry gets really silly in aoe tanking.

  12. Keres says:

    True that…5? I thought there will be 7 secondary’s now.

    Amplify, Readiness, Multistrike, Armor, Haste, Mastery and Crit? Or are some of those the new Tertiary stats?

    I’m really curious about what the value of armor will be, compared to others. Depending on how the Gems are handled having a “high-stam” setup may not be possible anymore, though a physical damage set with a lot of +armor might work in that stead…we’ll see.

    I just hope that +armor isn’t so good that we all turn into meat shields again, just with faster attacks, because of our AM. :)

    • Theck says:

      Well, no matter how you count them (I was ignoring crit, since that’s irrelevant for us outside of EF builds), we’re not getting any more secondaries than we already have. Amp, Readiness, MS, and Armor just replace hit/exp/dodge/parry.

      I suspect armor will be tuned to make it very attractive, if only so that we have an incentive to pick up the “tank-only” necks, cloaks, etc. And I’m fine with that, I loves me some armor.

      • Thels says:

        Yeah, I always loved armor on gear, which also made me love the cloak from the summer festival event, as it’s like one of the only pieces of armor left.

        If I understand correctly, we have four primary stats:
        – Stamina
        – Strength
        – Agility
        – Intellect
        And something that I’ll dub “Stragint” for the sake of convenience, which automatically converts to Strength, Agility or Intellect based on your class and spec, and convert whenever you change specs.

        We’ll have 6 general secondary stats, that are useful to all classes and specs, though different specs might favor different stats:
        – Mastery
        – Critical Strike
        – Haste
        – Readyness
        – Amplify
        – Multistrike

        And another 4 role specific secondary stats, that are only useful to certain roles:
        – Bonus Armor
        – Spirit
        – Attack Power
        – Spell Power

        Armor pieces will have:
        – Armor
        – Stamina
        – Stragint
        – Any 2 general secondary stats
        – Set bonuses if it’s a set piece, which will automatically adept to your spec.

        In addition, items that drop from raid bosses can have one or more of the following, which is added on top rather than replacing some of the base stats. Since set pieces are bought, I do not expect them to have any of the following:
        – A bonus to item levels. (Warforged)
        – A gem socket
        – A tertiary stat

        Other pieces won’t have Stragint.

        Cloaks, necklaces and rings likely will not have Strength, Agility or Intellect either, though it will probably still be present on weapons, shields and offhands. It’s quite possible that cloaks, necklaces and rings won’t have Stamina either, but we’ll have to wait and see.

        Most of these pieces will have one role specific secondary stat, and one general secondary stat, but some of these pieces will simply have two general secondary stats. Due to the lack of primary stats on cloaks, necklaces and rings, they might very well have a third secondary stat as well.

        Like armor pieces, other pieces that drop from raid bosses can also have a bonus to item levels, a gem socket, a tertiary stat or several of the above.

  13. blizzhoof says:

    The more I think about it, the more I’m convinced that removing reforging is a bad idea. The only reason that reforging sucks right now is because of hit/exp caps and haste caps. If they remove those like they say they are, then you won’t have to reforge all of your gear every time you get an upgrade. Instead, you’ll just reforge the crappy stats making you not so upset when you get a piece of gear that isn’t optimal.

    With the currently planned set up and no reforges having the wrong stats on your gear is going to make a much bigger difference than it does now. Currently, all of the cloth DPS in my raid want Mastery/Haste. When a Mastery/Crit piece drops, it’s still a slight upgrade for a lot of them using normal mode gear because they can reforge the Crit. However, with no reforging, if the disparities in secondary stat weights are as wide as they are now, then I’ll be sharding ilvl upgrades because the shitty secondary stat is not redeemable through reforging.

    Even if they make the secondary stats close enough, I still don’t see the point in removing reforging after hit/exp and haste caps are gone. Two stones aren’t necessary to kill one bird.

    • Thels says:

      Reforging is not something they want in the game, but they put in the game to make hit/exp caps slightly less problematic.

      Right now, if I loot a new pair of gloves on my DK, I have to:
      – Upgrade the gloves with Valor
      – Add an extra socket with Blacksmithing
      – Add Synapse Springs with Engineering
      – Enchant it
      – Gem it
      – Reforge it and several other pieces
      – Transmogrify it

      In Vanilla, if you got a new piece of gear, you could immediately equip it, and then later on you only had to enchant it. Right now, if you got a new piece of gear, it’ll gather dust in your bags until you have time to properly tune it. They want to go back to where you were more likely to just equip it right away.

      • blizzhoof says:

        The problem is that they apparently have no idea how to balance stat weights or give proper itemization on gear. Reforging will help cover their mistake.

        If they had any idea what they were doing, then I wouldn’t have every cloth dps in my raid clamoring for Haste/Mastery while Crit cloth is dropping all around me.

        Removing reforging only drops half of one thing off of your list: “Reforge it.” The “and several other pieces” part is only due to hit/exp caps. With those gone, you’d only have to reforge if the piece at a bad secondary stat.

        Don’t you want to be able to reforge the bad stat on your gear to make some use of it? Or would you rather feel like one of the two secondary stats on the piece is completely wasted?

        • blizzhoof says:

          Wow I can’t type.

          Reforging will help cover their mistakes*

          and in the third paragraph, the last sentence should be:

          “With those gone, you’d only have to reforge the piece if it had a bad secondary stat.”*

          L2Proofread Blizzhoof.

          • Thels says:

            It is not Blizzard’s intention to make every single piece as optimal as they can make it for the users. There are good pieces, and there are crappy pieces. These crappy pieces might be good for other classes, though. It’s not their job to provide us with the best possible loot. It’s their job to provide us with any loot, and our job to work with the loot provided to us.

            Reforging also leads to a problem where you can have seriously large amounts of a single stat on your gear, more than is really intended. Especially with hit and expertise gone, you’d reforge to stat X on every piece that doesn’t already have stat X.

            It would also be confusing for stats like Armor, Spirit, Attack Power and Spell Power. Can they be reforged? Can stats be reforged to them?

            Finally, you’d still have to reforge your gear every time to switch between your mainspec and your offspec, or for some DPS classes, when you switch between a single target fight and an aoe fight.

            Overall, I’m quite happy to see reforging gone entirely. It is not something that the game needs, or in any way interesting. Reforging the weakest stat on each piece of gear to the strongest stat that’s not already in that piece is not in any way interesting.

            They might have to revisit some stats, to make sure that each stat is at least moderately useful, but reforging is merely a band-aid, and not the fix to imbalanced stats.

            As for the number of tasks to perform:
            – Enchanting is going to be limited to only a few pieces. Unsure at this time if that means Shoulder and Leg enchants remain in the game.
            – Most items don’t have sockets, so no need to Gem them. Items that do have sockets have the socket added at no extra cost, so you can freely imagine it as a socketless piece of gear and equip it, and then Gem it at a later time. Unsure at this time if that means Belt buckles remain in the game.
            – Unsure at this time what will happen to Valor upgrades.
            – Unsure at this time how profession perks will work.
            – Transmogrification is of course not really required, and can be performed at any later time.

    • Dalmasca says:

      The biggest difference in WoD -according to the devs on twitter- is that they are making a concerted effort to make secondary stats closer in value. Even your “worst” stat shouldn’t cause you to pass on a higher ilvl piece of gear.

      In other words, every tank spec will have a defensive benefit to gain from former “junk stats”, like Crit.

      Additionally, it makes acquiring a gear set stacked with your “best” secondary stats a more engaging, rewarding -and yes, prolonged- process, rather than a quick trip to the reforger.

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