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Blizz, Raiding "nerfs", and Wrath

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Blizz, Raiding "nerfs", and Wrath

Postby Hollyhell » Fri Aug 01, 2008 9:45 am

I posted this on the wrath forums... Curious as to opinions from here:

I've sat here the past few days, devouring the changes that are showing from the Wrath Beta, and I'm somewhat perturbed.

For the most part I see some great changes, as well as some bad ones. But what I really see is some puzzling ones.

The main two that puzzle me are Tinnitus and Potion Sickness.Now, before you get all high and mighty about the situation, let me explain why.

While I can't remember the exact time (probably 2.1 or 2.2), I remember Blizz nerfing a few things. No one could buff that wasn't in the raid, and they did the battle/guardian elixir swap.So I asked myself, "Self, why would Blizzard do such a thing?".

The answer is simple: People were blowing through the content too quickly and Blizz wanted/needed a way to (try) and slow them down.

People would lvl warlocks to get SSs and summon them to outside the instance; people would still use an alt to buff spirit, etc. There are still work arounds for these, and they aren't complicated at all.

I remember hearing that Naxx was supposed to last until BC, and Blizz was surprised when people killed KT well ahead of release. Why? Because they min/maxed the raid and got every available buff they could. Ony, Nef, Hakkar, everything. Every available potion, pot, elixir, flask, and tuber. If people don't have content left, then Blizz feels they will complain too much (this is speculation on my part).

I think a similar thing happened at the start (hence the guardian/battle change) of BC, and is now going to happen in Wrath.

Blizz intentionally put blocks in SWP (Brut & M'uru), and didn't expect full raids to go LWing for drums (the reason for Tinnitus). They wanted people to do it full bore, standard buffs. They didn't expect destro and haste pots like have been used, either (reason for Potion Sickness). More or less it seems like they are deliberatly trying to slow progression.

So what does this mean for Wrath? Will Blizz put another gear check boss in? Or will it be technical bosses (ala Felmyst)?
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Postby Widdox » Fri Aug 01, 2008 9:49 am

I think they want to put a ceiling on buffs so that content remains hard for the level they tuned it for. You shouldn't have to use 100g worth of materials for one attempt on a boss, just to beat it. The idea is to shorten the gap between the min/max'ers and the average guild.
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Postby Arcand » Fri Aug 01, 2008 9:50 am

Limited buffs, and more 'don't stand in fire' fights where if you're totally not paying attention no amount of buffage will save you.

In my favorite fights, people doing their jobs and being in the right place at the right time is more important than their gear level or talent build or mitigation percentage. (These are the fights which become really really easy after a few successes, which some people might see as a flaw.)
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Postby Lemondish » Fri Aug 01, 2008 9:57 am

Arcand wrote:Limited buffs, and more 'don't stand in fire' fights where if you're totally not paying attention no amount of buffage will save you.

In my favorite fights, people doing their jobs and being in the right place at the right time is more important than their gear level or talent build or mitigation percentage. (These are the fights which become really really easy after a few successes, which some people might see as a flaw.)


I'm not entirely sure I agree that this could be seen as a flaw because in all honesty, these fights remain fun even after you have it on farm. Better yet, some of these fights open up new avenues for your raid to challenge themselves, either through mixing up the raid composition, using a new (and untried) strategy, or shooting for a super fast kill.
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Postby Karock » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:01 am

Blizz limits buffs because they want them not to be essential to fights. When Blizzard designs a fight they design it for a min/maxed raid using full consumables, because if they don't that raid will destroy the content.

If you can't chain pots, if you can't have 5 elixirs and a flask on, then blizzard doesn't have to design a boss to that expectation, and then you don't have to do it. :)
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Postby Mordinm » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:01 am

They want to be able to balance bosses around people with profession other then leatherworking. Currently there are guilds out there that will have every class chain a pot on every single cool down. Guilds will have everyone drop a profession for leatherworking to get content down.

This being the case blizzard had 2 options. They could balance around full pot use and make them hard for those top guilds, then go back and slowly nerf the encounters for the rest of the raiding guilds. Or they could balance them around more reasonable guilds and watch the top guilds blow though the content the day it becomes killable.

Neither of those are very good options IMO. So they changed consumable rules.
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Postby Dawnseeker » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:02 am

I definitely applaud the change here.
If a class is having to chug mana pots just to sustain hps, dps (or tps) for up to 10 mins then something is wrong, some classes already have ways of making their mana last almost indefinitely, resto druids with a high amount of spirit regen and innervate, shammies with shamanistic rage / mana tide, warlocks with lifetap and tankadins (theoretically) with spiritual attunement. It seems each class/spec will have better tools to make their mana last in wrath.
Looking forward to the shadowpriest changes especially, improved spirit tap <3
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Postby Nilaus » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:02 am

Guardian/Battle Elixirs were added because of the balancing issue of having too many stacking buffs:

If you tuned the encounters to everyone having a few buffs then it would be too easy if you got all the possible buffs.
On the other hand if you tuned the encounters to require all the possible buffs available you are making it impossible to progress without absurd farming before any raids (old Naxx).

The reason for Tinnitus and Potion sickness is exactly the same.

Chucking potions every 2 min has become mandatory for many classes and drum rotations are all but required in Sunwell.

It is poor game design and by limiting these buffs they are able to tune the encounters without assuming 100 MP5 from potions and constant 80 Haste to everyone.
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Postby Tisiphone » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:04 am

Widdox wrote:I think they want to put a ceiling on buffs so that content remains hard for the level they tuned it for. You shouldn't have to use 100g worth of materials for one attempt on a boss, just to beat it. The idea is to shorten the gap between the min/max'ers and the average guild.

The thing is that you don't NEED 100g worth of buffs for every boss. If noone used that, the raids would go as Blizz planned, SWP is the last raid before WoTLK and look, it's being farmed for more than a month already.

The thing is that if there would be a boss whom only grenades could harm, there would be guilds that would make all their members reroll engineering. I think if Blizzard is trying to nerf that, it's fine. I think raiding should go the usual way and killing a boss only because that mage respecced to leathworking which he totally doesn't need is lame.
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Re: Blizz, Raiding "nerfs", and Wrath

Postby Lore » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:05 am

Hollyhell wrote:While I can't remember the exact time (probably 2.1 or 2.2), I remember Blizz nerfing a few things. No one could buff that wasn't in the raid, and they did the battle/guardian elixir swap.So I asked myself, "Self, why would Blizzard do such a thing?".

The answer is simple: People were blowing through the content too quickly and Blizz wanted/needed a way to (try) and slow them down.


Not really.

The only buff you lose when someone logs off is Soulstone, because guilds were abusing it. Technically you're correct, but that's more along the lines of fixing an exploit than a nerf. You can still use alts to buff Spirit and so forth (I've done it myself).

The elixir nerf was simply put into place so that raiders wouldn't have to spend hundreds of gold on consumables every night. What you're forgetting is that all 25-man content was retuned in the same patch - a lot of fights actually got easier. Potion Sickness and Tinnitus are doing the same thing; I can easily blow through 200+ gold worth of Ironshield Potions on a single night of M'uru attempts. Leatherworkers do the same, and on top of that many cutting edge guilds consider Leatherworking a required profession for most or all of their raiders.

Blizzard is simply recognizing things that aren't fun and getting rid of them. That's all.
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Postby Hollyhell » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:07 am

Nilaus wrote:
Chucking potions every 2 min has become mandatory for many classes and drum rotations are all but required in Sunwell.

It is poor game design and by limiting these buffs they are able to tune the encounters without assuming 100 MP5 from potions and constant 80 Haste to everyone.


And this is basically my point. Would Brut be down if you couldn't chain pot and chain drums? He would be, but only by guilds that have had illidan on farm for quite a while. I'd like to see a guild go in and see if they could down Brut with stand buffs, 1 pot, and 3 drums per group over the 6 minutes.
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Re: Blizz, Raiding "nerfs", and Wrath

Postby Hollyhell » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:11 am

Lore wrote:
Hollyhell wrote:While I can't remember the exact time (probably 2.1 or 2.2), I remember Blizz nerfing a few things. No one could buff that wasn't in the raid, and they did the battle/guardian elixir swap.So I asked myself, "Self, why would Blizzard do such a thing?".

The answer is simple: People were blowing through the content too quickly and Blizz wanted/needed a way to (try) and slow them down.


Not really.

The only buff you lose when someone logs off is Soulstone, because guilds were abusing it. Technically you're correct, but that's more along the lines of fixing an exploit than a nerf. You can still use alts to buff Spirit and so forth (I've done it myself).

The elixir nerf was simply put into place so that raiders wouldn't have to spend hundreds of gold on consumables every night. What you're forgetting is that all 25-man content was retuned in the same patch - a lot of fights actually got easier. Potion Sickness and Tinnitus are doing the same thing; I can easily blow through 200+ gold worth of Ironshield Potions on a single night of M'uru attempts. Leatherworkers do the same, and on top of that many cutting edge guilds consider Leatherworking a required profession for most or all of their raiders.

Blizzard is simply recognizing things that aren't fun and getting rid of them. That's all.


I'd say it's a combo of both, at minimum. You can still buff spirit and other pally buffs (didn't know SS disappeared when someone logged off), but you see my point.

They nerf the content, as well as the consumables (at the same time). Is there an actual correlation or just coincidence?

If the fights are tuned properly, then it shouldn't be a problem. But look at C'thun or KT. How many times did KT despawn, mid-fight? How many times did you watch the stupid high dmg from C'thun?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bJVRgun7M7c

Maybe blizz needs to re-think their boss mechanics slightly?
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Postby PsiVen » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:11 am

I disagree, I think fights like Brutallus and M'uru are perfect examples of Blizzard designing encounters assuming drums and combat pots. They've been standard issue in high-end progression since the consumable nerf, before which every encounter was designed around max consumables.

I think it's a good thing overall. It means we will see real mana regen mechanics, tanks will have a choice to make during a fight rather than quaffing a passive 2k armor for the entire duration, and burst dps will be for a burst, not a periodic increase.

I think we can expect from Naxx one serious gear check (Patchwerk) and a lot more technical challenges. In the original version the bosses that were technically challenging were the ones that got the stacking treatment -- I'm not sure it even occurred to most guilds stuck on Patchwerk to go out and get 2 world buffs.

It's worth noting that Loatheb as currently designed would be piss easy to a raid with modern consumables. That fight was literally designed around moderate execution and heavy drinking.
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Postby Lore » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:12 am

Tisiphone wrote:
Widdox wrote:I think they want to put a ceiling on buffs so that content remains hard for the level they tuned it for. You shouldn't have to use 100g worth of materials for one attempt on a boss, just to beat it. The idea is to shorten the gap between the min/max'ers and the average guild.

The thing is that you don't NEED 100g worth of buffs for every boss. If noone used that, the raids would go as Blizz planned, SWP is the last raid before WoTLK and look, it's being farmed for more than a month already.


It may not be "absolutely 100% required or you'll never kill this boss", but it certainly makes things a lot easier, and as long as that's the case it might as well be.

Think about it. Say you're a raid leader. Who would you rather have in your raid, the Priest who chain chugs potions and keeps up heals the entire fight, or the Priest who runs out of mana 4 minutes in? The Rogue who chain chugs Haste potions and puts out 2400 DPS, or the Rogue who doesn't and only puts out 2000? The tank who chain chugs Ironshields and is easier to heal, or the tank who doesn't and sucks up more healing?
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Postby Arcand » Fri Aug 01, 2008 10:12 am

Karock wrote:Blizz limits buffs because they want them not to be essential to fights. When Blizzard designs a fight they design it for a min/maxed raid using full consumables, because if they don't that raid will destroy the content.


...which I wouldn't consider a terrible emergency, but I know I'm outvoted.
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