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On Pruning, PvP, and Our Goals for Legion


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#1 Vanguards

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Posted 17 April 2016 - 09:13 PM

On Pruning, PvP, and Our Goals for Legion

Lore recently made a post on Blizzard's goals for Legion, with an in-depth answer towards pruning.

Official Blizzard Quote:

So' class='bbc_url' title='External link' rel='nofollow external'>http://us.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/20743094425']So, let’s talk about pruning. I’d like to give some clearer insight into what we’re trying to achieve, and the type of feedback we’re looking for. Warning: there are likely to be many, many words here.
What you’re seeing in Legion falls under one of two different goals:
  • Refocusing each spec around their core concepts
  • Reduced reliance on cooldowns, both offensive and defensive
I’ll explain these one at a time.

On refocusing: Over the years, as we’ve attempted to add new toys for every class in each expansion, we feel that the gameplay of quite a few specs has drifted away from the philosophies and ideals behind them. For some classes, such as Rogue, the specs don’t really feel very different from each other. For others, such as Priest, the differences are purely mechanical; Discipline uses absorbs, and Holy uses direct healing, but it’s not really clear why.

So, in Legion, we’re taking a hard look at what each spec should make you feel like when you’re playing it, and making sure that the abilities you’re using tie into that. When we talk about “class fantasy,” that’s more or less what we mean. It’s also made us realize that, frankly, we’ve made some mistakes over the years. Each spec is supposed to have some strengths and weaknesses, and as we’ve added abilities to shore up those weaknesses, we’ve diminished the value of their strengths.

Compare a Mage to a Warlock, for example. Mages were supposed to be highly mobile, but very squishy if you can lock them down; Warlocks were supposed to be able to take more direct punishment, but have a harder time getting away. But then we started giving Warlocks more mobility, which meant we had to give Mages more survivability, and nowadays those differences are subtle at best. The two classes should feel a lot more distinct than they do, both to play as and to play against. That means dialing back the mobility for Warlocks, and dialing back the survivability for Mages.

End result: Yes, you’ve probably lost a couple tools in Legion. But so have other people. So, when we get feedback along the lines of “Now I don’t have any way to deal with X”… we might actually think that’s a good thing. In PvP, this means you’re going to rely on your teammates a little more often. In a raid or dungeon, it means you might not want to purposefully stack Warlocks just because “they have the best numbers.”

On cooldowns: We’ve gotten a ton of feedback over the past couple of expansions that players feel like they aren’t able to do much without cooldowns active. When a Ret Paladin uses Avenging Wrath, Holy Avenger, and Execution Sentence all at once, they hit like a freight train carrying a truck full of bricks, but as soon as those effects end, they just kind of… keep themselves busy until their cooldowns are back up. “Your class is fun and exciting 17% of the time” isn’t awesome.

We’ve also gotten to the point where there’s entirely too many “get out of jail” cards in PvP. The Mage is in trouble… Ironbark. In trouble again… Nature’s Swiftness. Then Ice Block. Then another Ironbark. Then a trinket. Then Nature’s Swiftness. Then maybe, if you’re really good, you can get the Mage’s second Ice Block before Ironbark comes up again. He had to use Cold Snap, what an amazing play!

I’m obviously exaggerating here – most of the time, your goal is to force several of those cooldowns at once – but that kind of illustrates the point. In order for a kill to ever happen, things have to get excessive. So, in Legion, we want to chill out on just how strong those cooldowns can be, so that we can let you be more effective once they’ve worn off. Theoretically, we could accomplish that by just making the numbers on those cooldowns lower, but that quickly gets to the point where each individual cooldown just feels flat. “Increases damage by 5% for 20 seconds” just isn’t that exciting. Our only real alternative is to reduce how many cooldowns you have available, so that the ones that are left can still feel substantial.

Now then, on feedback: We recognize that all of these changes are pretty scary, and we’ve been in the MMO business long enough at this point to know better than to assume we’ll get everything right on the first try. So, let’s talk about feedback, and what you can do to help us make Legion an amazing expansion.

Many players have already been providing great feedback and bringing up good points of discussion, which we’re extremely grateful for, and have already made several changes that were influenced by that feedback. For example, pretty early on in the Legion Alpha, we decided against our original thought of removing resurrection spells from non-Healer specs (such as Shadow, Enhancement, or Balance). A lot of you thought that felt weird, and we agreed. More recently, several PvPers have expressed concern that Legion is currently too focused on simply dealing damage, and there aren’t enough opportunities for a skilled player to shine. That’s a big concern of ours as well, and one we’re doing our best to avoid.

However, sometimes good feedback gets so bogged down in hyperbole that it’s hard for us to tell if the point you’re making is based on actual concerns and testing, or if you’ve just been misinformed. For example, one complaint we see a lot is that “classes only have 5 or 6 spells in Legion.” That’s simply not true – as of this post, most specs have between 20 and 25 baseline abilities, with talents, Honor talents, and your Artifact active skill adding up to 5-10 abilities on top of that (and yes, we recognize that not all of those skills will be useful in all situations).

So, the biggest thing that can help us understand your concerns is to be as specific as possible. “I have too few abilities” is certainly a reasonable opinion, but that doesn’t tell us why you feel that way. Instead of leaving at that, try to expand on it a bit:
  • What specific ability do you miss, and why do you feel it’s important?
  • If you’re concerned that your spec will be too weak in a given scenario, what makes you feel that way? Do you feel you shouldn’t be? Why?
  • If you want more abilities, but are taking passive talents instead of active ones, why is that?
  • Are the new abilities your spec has in Legion not doing it for you? Why not?
Those are obviously just some examples, but that’s the sort of feedback that lets us really understand what your specific concerns are. And while there are certainly going to be cases in which we just disagree (we’re always going to do what we feel is right for the game), pointing out the underlying issues goes a long way towards making sure we recognize when we need to improve.

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#2 xndr

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Posted 17 April 2016 - 09:29 PM

fantastic distraction post from the community manager; let's focus on legion, those 141,000+ signatories will forget they even played nostalrius
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#3 BrodanGhizzle

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Posted 17 April 2016 - 10:11 PM

fantastic distraction post from the community manager; let's focus on legion, those 141,000+ signatories will forget they even played nostalrius


Actualy I agree with you however they tried to response our complaints about Legion becouse they realised that people are not likely to play it becouse of designs. They removed wrong abilities though.
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#4 Speedymart

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Posted 17 April 2016 - 10:49 PM

have you seen the class designs?


shit is unrecognizable compared to their former selves, all for "class identitiy" or some bullshit
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#5 Pinka

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Posted 17 April 2016 - 11:15 PM

  • Refocusing each spec around their core concepts
  • Reduced reliance on cooldowns, both offensive and defensive
Isn't this what we want. All you can do is to post more feedback in the right way.
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#6 Call Me Teranaye

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 12:23 AM

ah blizzard....
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#7 Maleficent

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 01:11 AM

give me back fel flame.
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#8 abolishedtehe

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 05:34 AM

I'd love to say I read this but you lost me at lore, which sadly, was the first word.
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#9 Nogahn

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 07:16 AM

- gimme back my scattershot. (it has been an esential hunter ability since vanilla and gave my class much more utlity)

-> to compensate that ability blizzard should bring back the "arm-time" for launched traps. (depending on range .5 - 1.5 secs - triggers instantly if you simply lay it down) - back then you actually had to be a tiny bit creative to get off traps.

- I'd also would like to see silenceshot back in the skilltree. (wyvern + silence + binding) so we actually have to make a decision on what ability we need for a certain matchup/strategy. (instead of picking wyvern 80% of the time)

I.E. do you wanna play wyvern vs godcomp so you dont have to care about MD/use it for cross cc or do you wanna play silence to deny a poly (100% denied since our interupt is dogshit and even has traveltime)

Bring back the old tranqshot mechanic (costs 20 focus and is spammable - not reduceable with BW) I dont want my gameplay to rely on RNG.

PRUNE exotic ammo. it's a dumb mechanic which does not require any skill at all and allows me to slow 2 opponents for most of the game.

PRUNE double execute it's a dumb mechanic (nerf executes in general - hi my fellow warriors)

CHANGE - let wyvern be interuptable (and be locked on nature + make all my traps to be nature spells)

Edited by Nogahn, 18 April 2016 - 07:16 AM.

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#10 Railander

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 03:56 PM

  • Refocusing each spec around their core concepts
  • Reduced reliance on cooldowns, both offensive and defensive
Isn't this what we want. All you can do is to post more feedback in the right way.


while i agree with the premise, it seems they cant even follow their own designs.

what happened to totems? warrior stance distinctions? warlock curses?
pruning, they are definitely doing it wrong.
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#11 Fotmogu

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 04:21 PM

Well, imho the only problem in pvp cata/mop/wod, that if you pop your cooldowns or you make cc well, good positioning, some skill, it wont give you a win by all means. There is some situation when you don't have to react necessary. In wotlk, ccs, positioning and skill were more responsive. Doesn't matter how many cooldowns/interrupts/stuns/ defensive cds you have. Imho we need a fast pvp gameplay and when i waste my trinket or spam heal i just lose. No more god classes.
Some comps have to cc 40x the enemy to deep dampening to force a win or screw it twice and lose, and some comps not because easy mode.
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#12 Inops

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 06:54 PM

Class Fantasy is a lie, like trashran. I hope they fail in Legion so they realize. The game lacks mid-high end mechanics on gameplay. Bring back snapshotting and more abilities. Bring complexity.
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#13 Siuox

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 07:26 PM

  • Refocusing each spec around their core concepts
  • Reduced reliance on cooldowns, both offensive and defensive
- Incarnation Damage + 40% instead of 15% (WOD); 30 % (MOP) (much depth) - just remove it already
- PvE Devs introducing PvE Talents for 5 instant casts (much depth)
- Passive Heal crap like Ysera's Gift still in the game (much depth)
- New fun class fantasies like rezz totem for shamans, so much fun like dks in s5; autobubble for paladins; 3 second spell reflect for warriors, 30 sec interrupt immunity for arcane? mages instead of nerfing meele interrupts etc. etc. just pure troll at this point
- Shiny renames: Garrisons aka Order Halls; Class Fantasy aka Prune; Ashran for 110; LFR (Tools)

Feedback of Nadagast, Cdew, Absterge more or less ignored.
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#14 Maleficent

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 01:15 AM

Class Fantasy is a lie, like trashran. I hope they fail in Legion so they realize. The game lacks mid-high end mechanics on gameplay. Bring back snapshotting and more abilities. Bring complexity.

We're not allowed to have buttons or class-depth. It's in the name of fantasy!
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#15 cippi

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 11:46 AM

Bring back the old tranqshot mechanic (costs 20 focus and is spammable - not reduceable with BW) I dont want my gameplay to rely on RNG.

Ye, give back old tranqu shot that removes enrages only.
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#16 Naraga

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 12:14 PM

How exactly can they write this:
  • Refocusing each spec around their core concepts
  • Reduced reliance on cooldowns, both offensive and defensive

While doing the complete opposite? Classes move even further away from their core concepts, and cooldown reliance is intensified both offensively and defensively in Legion.
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S8 ele LSD glad S9 resto shamn glad Thunka

Druid utility is superior to shamans utility already

all the other healers should be buffed up to the point of having a way of not having to outplay 2 dps to survive

Thunka 2.0

disc is way way better than druid.


#17 Gimotqt

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 01:08 PM

Ye, give back old tranqu shot that removes enrages only.

at the same time give back arcane shot removing magic effects.

How exactly can they write this:

  • Refocusing each spec around their core concepts
  • Reduced reliance on cooldowns, both offensive and defensive

While doing the complete opposite? Classes move even further away from their core concepts, and cooldown reliance is intensified both offensively and defensively in Legion.

i played only hunter in alpha not sure how about other classes, but i can agree with that guy(they always talk nicely and then game is shit but nvm:P)
cds makes my class stronger but i can kill ppl without it(not counting spells with less than 30s cd as a cd spell) as a surv, bm and mm hunt
also he is right about that doing dmg is too big thing atm, if u stop u lose... along with lack of abilities for some classes it seems like it will be wonder if they make this xpansion fun and complete

Edited by Gimotqt, 19 April 2016 - 01:26 PM.

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#18 Häxantutto

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 01:24 PM

  • Bring back disarms again, on a longer CD, you'll only be able to use it 2-3 times during a long game, or once for shorter games.
  • We want the option of having charge stun as a warrior again.
  • What happened to heroic strike?

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#19 Duduferalul

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 03:21 PM

i didnt read much about legion but bring skin back to feral , 1 wall for 2min cd 8-10 sec duration instead of 2x6 or 1x10 , give cyclone back , remove ysera gift , make incarnation 2min cd 15sec duration , give savage roar back , bring nature's grasp back , bring hibernate back , make the cd on maim bigger instead of 10 probably 25-30 , reduce the armor from bear form , make bash only usable in cat and bear form. (as i said i didnt read much so if some of them are already changed im sorry)
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#20 Railander

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Posted 22 April 2016 - 12:18 AM

  • Refocusing each spec around their core concepts
  • Reduced reliance on cooldowns, both offensive and defensive
- Incarnation Damage + 40% instead of 15% (WOD); 30 % (MOP) (much depth) - just remove it already
- PvE Devs introducing PvE Talents for 5 instant casts (much depth)
- Passive Heal crap like Ysera's Gift still in the game (much depth)
- New fun class fantasies like rezz totem for shamans, so much fun like dks in s5; autobubble for paladins; 3 second spell reflect for warriors, 30 sec interrupt immunity for arcane? mages instead of nerfing meele interrupts etc. etc. just pure troll at this point
- Shiny renames: Garrisons aka Order Halls; Class Fantasy aka Prune; Ashran for 110; LFR (Tools)

Feedback of Nadagast, Cdew, Absterge more or less ignored.


with the exception of rez totem, which is pretty cool and nothing like s5 dks, agree with everything you said.
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