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Dev Watercooler - Threat

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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Koatanga » Sun Aug 28, 2011 1:41 pm

I don't think the threat change is a positive one for the social barriers preventing more people from tanking. I think if there were lethal consequences when a DPS mistargets or is over-zealous, then DPS would learn to behave better, making runs less stressful and more enjoyable for tanks.

While the model of waiting for 5 sunders before you begin DPS is a bit much, I do think there is a finesse aspect to doing strong DPS while respecting agro that is missing in the current game model.

I think the consequence of pulling agro has been nerfed too much. It used to be if you pulled agro, there was a pretty good chance you would be one-shot. Now, the model is such that the DPS can be hit 3 or 4 times before they die. In the one-shot model, the DPS says "oops, my bad". In the 4-shot model, the DPS says "WTF noob tank lrn2taunt". The difference is in the amount of time the tank has to taunt the mob.

It does become difficult when the DPS heavily out-gears the tank, but it's nothing that wasn't dealt with on a regular basis from inception through Burning Crusade.

Worrying about threat is a good thing - it just needs the appropriate consequences. When the consequences are minimal, DPS will not worry about threat or pulling aggro. When the consequence is being 1-shot, the DPS will respect threat, allow the tank to pull and position a group, maintain their CCs, etc., all of which makes life more pleasant for the tank, and makes tanking a more accessible role.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby yappo » Sun Aug 28, 2011 2:55 pm

Malthrax wrote:
yappo wrote:You're likely to solve the problem with seven man dungeons. Worst case you'd need eight man ones.

The former would be 1 tank, 1 heal and 5 dps. The latter, 1 tank, 2 heal, 5 dps. Basically you acknowledge the actual spread among players when it comes to how attractive the roles are from a percentage point of view.


Anything you do to reduce the DPS queue time is going to attract more DPS to the queue.

The "queue time" issue is a result of forced reliance on a limited resource (i.e. a player willing to take on the "tank" role). There is no solution to the issue, so long as Blizzard maintains the constraint of requiring a tank for each group.


While partially correct, you'll eventually run into a more natural constraint -- the percentage of people NOT wanting to play tank. While a 15 man dungeon, 1 tank, 2 healers, 12 dps, would be ridiculous, it would most likely see tanks and healers waiting in queue for dps to fill up.

So, while a six-man dungeon won't remove the queues, it would alleviate the problem somewhat. The seven man dungeon would do so to a greater extent, and so on unto absurdity. While I don't know WHERE the equilibrium lies, one such does indeed exist.

Notably ICC 25 man pugs were more evenly balanced as to what roles were filled first compared to ICC 10 man pugs. The latter filled up just like your average five-man, which, given the 2, 3, 5 -distribution of roles, was hardly surprising. In fact finding three healers proved about as problematic as finding two tanks, which would correspond somewhat to the current situation for five-mans.

An aspect you didn't bring up, but one which agrees with your proposition, is how 'proper' raids, breaks the 'natural' distribution. Competent people of all roles are sucked up into raiding guilds. As 10-man raiding seems to have taken over, the lack of pugging tanks becomes more accentuated than during ICC. As there were less tanks, than 10-man raiding distribution suggests, from the beginning, the ratio of decent tanks for pugs goes down further compared with ICC days.

The point, at which you balance the number of dps for dungeons, still exists though. It's probably merely higher now than before.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Koatanga » Sun Aug 28, 2011 4:37 pm

I wonder how much raid distribution impacts general distribution. If you only need 2-3 tanks in a 25-man raid, then tanking is not a great career path because your 1/5 participation in dungeons gets filtered into 3/25 available jobs.

For the other two tanks, their options are to gear as DPS (which means running dungeons as DPS unless they plan to roll need on off-spec), or playing a different toon. So for every 25-man raid, 5 tanks become 3 tanks and 2 DPS.

That stacks up rather quickly. Those tanks don't just take a DPS spot in queue; they also reduce the number of tank-instances run, from 5 to 3 (assuming for the sake of discussion that everyone queues).

Let's say that 25-man raid doesn't clear enough content to max valour points, so they split up to top it off by running 2 random troll instances. For the sake of illustration, we will say they are the only people who queue in all of WoW.

Because 2 tanks now run as DPS, that's 17 total DPS in the queue, 5 healers, and only 3 tanks. After each tank completes one random, there are 10 people who haven't run, and another 25 who need to run again for more VPs. The tanks run again, to top off their VP for the week, again taking 1 healer and 3 DPS each. After those runs, there are 4 healers and 16 DPS who still need another run to top up their VPs for the week, and no tanks needing VPs in the queue.

Raid design needs to follow dungeon design in terms of role distribution, or it seems that long queues are inevitable. At least with 10-man raiding, the distribution is pretty good, although in our case the healer/DPS person ends up healing pretty much full-time.

But as you can see, in addition to the sociological factors making tanking unattractive, Bliz has designed the endgame to need fewer tanks, which only exacerbates the queue problem.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby masterpoobaa » Sun Aug 28, 2011 6:12 pm

Your average wow player in RDF will invariably choose the path of greatest ease.
Why do something more difficult (heal/tank) for essentially the same reward, and a LOAD less angst and responsibility.

Coming from the perspective of a random DPS scrub in RDF:
Tanking - Tank (geared tank = woohoo gettin carried! noob tank = insult if he cant hold aggro or do a perfect job)
Healing - Healer. (Its been months since I've seen a heal-capable DPS help out when things go tits-up)
Marking targets - Tank.
Boss positioning - Tank.
CC - I can do that now that the intelligent timing aspect has been taken out.
CC broken - Let tank deal with it.
New Adds - Tank can pick them up.
Dispels - Healer/Tank
Interrupts - Tank again (I get absolutely smashed if I rely on DPS in RDF to interrupt)
Marking targets - Tank
Not attacking skull - *shrug* meh, If I pull aggro the tank will save me, I can take a few hits and the healer should be able to keep me up. If I die then I can just shout "L2P NOOBTANK" for not generating enough threat on all mobs - especially with the new threat mechanics.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Malthrax » Sun Aug 28, 2011 6:24 pm

Koatanga wrote:... in addition to the sociological factors making tanking unattractive, Bliz has designed the endgame to need fewer tanks, which only exacerbates the queue problem.

Exactly.

1-1-3 in a 5-man - check
2-2-6 in a 10-man - check
5-5-15 in a 25-man ??? no way


Of those 5 tanks, 3 of them really need to be healers. Or maybe 2 healers and a DPSer. But that messes up the 5-man balance. And you can't 5-heal a 25-man raid boss (unless you really out-gear it) due to all the unavoidable raid damage being thrown about, unless Blizzard re-designs the raid encounters to have less AOE damage and more "meaningful things to tank".

Perhaps get rid of raid-wide damage, except in very special circumstances - and adopt a philosophy of "the healer watches the tank and nothing else", and add more multiple-boss 25-man fights?
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Koatanga » Sun Aug 28, 2011 7:19 pm

In my numbers, I rolled the extra healers into DPS, since all healers have a DPS spec and in most cases their healing gear is perfectly adequate to do respectable DPS. Doesn't really matter - if you have 4/16 leftovers vs 8/12 leftovers, you still have too many healers/DPS and not enough tanks.

I guess the problem with encounter design flexing for more tanks in 25s is that you end up with sub-bosses who are only there to give the OTs something to do, which is not really very compelling.

Still, encounter design is practically limitless in terms of what can be done - I am sure with a bit of creativity some of the numbers issues can be solved.

Wrangling this back to topic:

Threat is beneficial because it forms a relationship between the tank and the DPS. WoW is an MMO, which means it is built on the idea of multiple people working together to achieve a task that no individual could on his own. That doesn't mean each person doing their job separately from everyone else but attacking the same target until it dies. There's no interaction in that - no reason for the people with you not to be NPCs.

In BC, there were relationships. The tank protected the healer, who healed the tank. The DPS paid attention to threat because they would be one-shot if they screwed up. They would also look after the healer - if the healer was in danger, they would CC or directly damage the thing to pull agro off the healer and run the mob back to the tank.

You don't see that so much these days. For one, threat is much stronger, so the healer isn't in danger of pulling. For two, I doubt most DPS would notice if the healer was taking damage, and if they did they wouldn't have the first clue what to do about it and would simply watch it devour the healer while waiting for the tank to taunt it back.

It's not that their skills are any less - they are just dulled by disuse. All they have to do is pew-pew the boss and watch Recount. This is partly because threat is so strong that they have no threat cap, and partly because very little is instantly fatal they let it hit them.

I feel that the threat changes basically nerf interraction to the point where everyone has their own little sphere in which they operate. DPS play Recount, healers play whack-a-mole, and now tanks will play cooldown-tetris. Everyone playing his little mini-game within WoW that doesn't really need or want influence or input from the others in the fight.

I am not sure that is a good design for the sustainability of the game. People play an MMO because they want the interaction. If they didn't want that, they'd be playing single-player games offline.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Klaudandus » Sun Aug 28, 2011 8:15 pm

Koatanga's wall of text


And yet there are many one-shot mechanics from bosses, which dont allow for mistakes. Ironically, I do agree that DPS should be more responsible... It's quite often, even among my guildies to just aim at whatever target they want and blast away while we're doing heroic randoms -- and apparently, even they cannot do something simple as /assist. Oh yeah, even when the mob is going after them and I manage to fire a taunt at the mob (which btw is now 20 yards away and nowhere near the range of ANY OF MY ATTACKS) they wont switch and such, the target brushes off the taunt and goes back to its own business.

*facedesk* Aaarrrrgh~!
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Zalaria » Mon Aug 29, 2011 5:15 am

Klaudandus wrote:
Koatanga's wall of text


And yet there are many one-shot mechanics from bosses, which dont allow for mistakes. Ironically, I do agree that DPS should be more responsible... It's quite often, even among my guildies to just aim at whatever target they want and blast away while we're doing heroic randoms -- and apparently, even they cannot do something simple as /assist. Oh yeah, even when the mob is going after them and I manage to fire a taunt at the mob (which btw is now 20 yards away and nowhere near the range of ANY OF MY ATTACKS) they wont switch and such, the target brushes off the taunt and goes back to its own business.

*facedesk* Aaarrrrgh~!


Yeah, I just let them die and taunt it after.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Passionario » Mon Aug 29, 2011 6:32 am

Koatanga wrote:In BC, there were relationships.


Yet said relationships were often one-sided to the point of being unhealthy.

Healers watched the tank's health. DPSers watched the tank's threat. The tank, meanwhile, could happily pew-pew the mobs and watch DBM timers, content in the knowledge that other people (who could be easily replaced by NPCs) would take care of his needs.

----------------

Speaking of BC, these changes make me feel as though I've traveled back in time to that era.

In Karazhan, I held aggro with passive/reflected damage (Consecration + Holy Shield + Retribution Aura + shield spike). My primary concern was to grab the mobs' initial attention and to stay alive until they die.

In Deathwing's Demise, I will hold aggro with passive/reflected threat (new Vengeance). My primary concern will be to grab the mobs' initial attention and to stay alive until they die.

The more things change...
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Rhiannon » Mon Aug 29, 2011 3:15 pm

Malthrax wrote:And you can't 5-heal a 25-man raid boss (unless you really out-gear it) due to all the unavoidable raid damage being thrown about, unless Blizzard re-designs the raid encounters to have less AOE damage and more "meaningful things to tank".


Rag heroic was 3 healed by some guilds as progression, Baleroc heroic was 3 healed as progression (though in its current form 5 is most sensible), Domo heroic was 3 healed as progression, Rhyolith heroic was 4? healed - maybe 5 as progression. Could easily see Alys being 4 healed, not sure if people did that. Really only beth required 6-7 healers. In the previous tier there were a few more fights where bringing more healers drastically increased your chances of success, but not this tier, so Blizzard could easily tune encounters to require 5 healers if they so wished.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Malthrax » Tue Aug 30, 2011 6:26 am

Rhiannon wrote:Rag heroic was 3 healed by some guilds as progression, Baleroc heroic was 3 healed as progression (though in its current form 5 is most sensible), Domo heroic was 3 healed as progression, Rhyolith heroic was 4? healed - maybe 5 as progression. Could easily see Alys being 4 healed, not sure if people did that. Really only beth required 6-7 healers. In the previous tier there were a few more fights where bringing more healers drastically increased your chances of success, but not this tier, so Blizzard could easily tune encounters to require 5 healers if they so wished.


That's good to know... now all they need to do is fabricate a bunch of meaningful multiple-boss / multiple-tank fights.

Though, to be honest, the exploits of the world Top-10/50/100 guilds don't really interest me. Even in the relatively tiny community of "active raiders", they're a statistical outlier. I'm more interested in how many healers us "mere mortals" need to complete the normal-mode fights.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby firstamendme » Tue Aug 30, 2011 8:42 am

Koatanga wrote: - if the healer was in danger, they would CC or directly damage the thing to pull agro off the healer and run the mob back to the tank.

You don't see that so much these days. For one, threat is much stronger, so the healer isn't in danger of pulling. For two, I doubt most DPS would notice if the healer was taking damage, and if they did they wouldn't have the first clue what to do about it and would simply watch it devour the healer while waiting for the tank to taunt it back.


Funnily enough, I was running OK on my warlock alt and the mage face pulled a group of the elementals+caster. The healer ended up tanking 2 of the elementals so I instacast-soulfired one and banished the other while the tank made sense of what was happening.

I actually got reprimanded for banishing the mob by the rest of the group (except for the healer) because they had to wait for the banish to wear off at the end of the fight and I was slowing down the run.

:(
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Worldie » Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:20 am

Ahem, you know you can (since quite a bit) unbanish a mob by rebanishing it?
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Mukat » Tue Aug 30, 2011 9:54 am

Worldie wrote:Ahem, you know you can (since quite a bit) unbanish a mob by rebanishing it?

Since the start 3.3 I think, when they introduced the RDF is when I can definitely remember it. I can't recall using that in Ulduar.
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Re: Dev Watercooler - Threat

Postby Flex » Tue Aug 30, 2011 10:19 am

Koatanga wrote:I don't think the threat change is a positive one for the social barriers preventing more people from tanking. I think if there were lethal consequences when a DPS mistargets or is over-zealous, then DPS would learn to behave better, making runs less stressful and more enjoyable for tanks.


No. If there were lethal consequences for DPS for pulling from the tank it would just be more "hatred" pushed onto the tank from DPS when the DPS pulled.

The only way to remove the social barriers is for the RDF to become more civil. I mean the entire frustration thread is basically "Everyone in the RDF sucks except for me who is awesome."
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