FEEDBACK: Druid Class Changes

I absolutely agree.

If the encounter design team wishes to continue to create fights similar to that of Vol’zith where interrupt management across the group as a whole is critical, then Balance druids and Shadow priests need some form of adjustment of their interrupt so that it aligns with other casters.

I’m personally all for encounters that make a player think about their toolkit and maybe forces you to use a spell that you might not often use; that’s good game play imo; however, when an encounter is clearly designed without the thought of certain specs or group compositions in mind, then I believe we’ve diverged off a good game play path.

A dungeon should not be designed where a group feels compelled to take an all melee or all ranged composition, anything but spec X b/c of something so silly as interrupts. There are far better things to design advantages around than that.

10 Likes

Long time balance druid here; dabbled in vanilla and mained since BC. After toying with the new Eclipse, I just wanted to post a few observations for the devs.

Firstly, I actually really like the fluid feel of the new rotation, and I like that it only takes two casts to get back into Eclipse. The rotation feels very smooth and the high uptime is very nice.

On the other hand, I will say that it lacks some umph. The rotation being on rails doesn’t really feel that rewarding. It’s smooth, and it’s fun because it’s chill and smooth, but the linear way of casting makes me fell like… well, what’s even the point of Eclipses?

I’m one of those weirdos who actually enjoys BfA Eclipse because it has a lot of choice and keeps me on my toes. I’m still in control of it, but the way I react to Astral Power and Empowerments is fun. Sure, we have to cast specific spenders to get rid of Empowerments and whatnot. But the order isn’t set in stone. We have a general map of priorities, but the way those are carried out can be varied.

With SL Eclipse, it just feels dull and kinda of useless in a way. I just keep thinking “Wow this smoothness is fun… but why is this even here?”

8 Likes

Feral Beta Thoughts

DPS
Bloodtalons Interactions
When playing Blood Talons (BT) Ferocious Bites during Convoke the Spirits (CtS) window will consume BT procs but thrash, rake, shred used as part of the CtS window will not generate BT procs.
Therefore you end CtS window with 5 combo points and 0 BT charges so have to use an unempowered finisher.

Using Thrash on ST and Shred on AOE to proc BT feels really inefficient as Thrash does very little damage for the energy cost and is only worth using to propagate BT.
Shred on large AOE does not compete with Thrashing or Swipe spamming and again is only used to propagate BT.
Changing BT to “Shred/Swipe, Rake, Thrash” is a more ideal solution.

Another issue with BT is when you leave combat you want to ensure you have as many combo points as you can and have BT procced so you can re-enter the next segment of combat with an immediate BT snapped finisher. However, this becomes an issue as that means raking and thrashing a mob on sub 10% health which is not good. Failing to do this instead results in entering combat with 5 CP and no BT or always starting combat with no pre-generated CP so requires higher ramp up time - this will make us look awful especially in lower level keys at the beginning of the expansion where things die before you’re done ramping.

Jagged wounds would help alleviate the need to refresh bleeds midway through their uptime in order to reproc BT - an occurrence that will become more prevalent as we gain more secondary stats (specifically haste/crit).

Shred deals 20% increased damage to bleeding targets. Could improve Shred without Wild Fleshrending (WFR) via 20% increase damage PER bleed. Encourages Thrash on ST. Change Swipe to function in the same manner.

CtS is casting Feral Frenzy. Balance casts Full Moon. These are not included in the tooltip but must be added flavour?
The damage of Feral Frenzy in this scenario is very poor.

Sabertooth/Rip need to be rebalanced around the new Sabertooth effect as we’ve just lost a number of Ferocious Bites over the course of a fight.

Adaptive Swarm can jump to allies that aren’t engaged in combat with you (jumped to nearby players when near a target dummy testing). If Adaptive Swarm is active on a friendly player and they target a mob that you aren’t engaged in combat with, Adaptive Swarm will jump to that enemy target upon expiration (fun ninja pull scenario ensues).

With the recent AOE cap Scent of Blood (SoB) has now lost value on an already dead talent. It would be nice to see this talent revamped. A passive talent works well for newer Ferals.

Berserk still feels like a useless CD as it’s effect is reduced during Bloodlust. And it has little to no effect on AOE. All that on a 3min cd :(. Please do not nerf Tiger’s Fury to compensate a Berserk buff.

Utility

Cyclone + BR usable in cat form - via predatory swiftness? I personally feel the instant cyclone is too strong but BR is a must.

In SL
Balance: Gain Stampeding Roar + Ursol’s Vortex
Resto: Gains Stampeding Roar
Feral: Stays the same
Guardian: Loses either Typhoon or Ursol’s Vortex.

This is an issue as Resto and Balance retain innervate and Balance retains Treants. Guardian luckily has the benefit of being a desirable role - Tank. Feral does not have anything to allow to compete with Balance. Treants + Innervate would at least cause people to say “we want a Druid dps” rather than “we want a Balance Druid”.

Leader of the Pack (LotP) is a big point of contention for me. I personally feel if LotP was implemented, as many Ferals desire, then we’d be guaranteeing ourselves a raid spot. Is that necessary? Is that fair? However, for the average guild trying to progress through Heroic raiding and potentially a few bosses of Mythic at a slower pace than World First Raiders composition is way less likely to be an issue. Therefore, being able to bring a few warm bodies that can benefit your team the most could be a welcome solution to Feral’s inclusion?

Defense

Barkskin can be surprisingly nice to have. It’s ability to act as a minor defensive and be used whilst incapped/stunned/sleep/feared etc makes it beneficial to have.
Survival Instincts should still be on a 2 minute CD - even with 1 charge. It in no way is comparable to an outright immunity nor is it as powerful as say DH darkness - so why the long CD?

Legendaries

Currently without legendaries implemented all we can do is speculate.
I’m quite happy to receive near enough any of the Legion legendaries should that be the case.

An interesting choice could be a “Ferocious Bite deals the remaining damage on Rip to the target (without consuming the Rip)” could throw in a “can only occur every ‘x’ amount of seconds”
Or
“Ferocious Bite deals x% of it’s damage to surrounding enemies (capped to 3 / 5)

Jungle Fury Azerite Trait could be reintroduced via a conduit.

Legendaries centered around improving bleed damage/reducing bleed time are favoured by many.

83 Likes

It’s that situation now, where we’re in Eclipse all the time, so why even have it.

5 Likes

I just want to share my thoughts and feedback on Feral’s lack of desirability and how Shadowlands is looking to widen the community perception issues.

Some smaller things I’ll start with - firstly Rebirth is weaker and frustrating as Feral, it takes you out of cat form (doesn’t for Moonkin for some reason), and also as you’re in melee range if a tank dies it’s very easy to instantly be killed before getting the cast off, resulting in wipe, whereas it’s supposed to be a wipe preventer (another reason why the survival instincts nerf also really hurts). Bal/Resto can safely BREZ tanks from range. The same goes for Cyclone, why does Feral lose form yet Balance doesn’t? It’s not just a waste of a GCD, but it feels awkward and clunky to play; this being baseline while benefitting both specs, is stronger for Balance/Resto, and will have a lot of niche use in mythic+ I imagine. Particularly bad for Guardian.

Suggestion: make Rebirth instant cast with Predatory Swiftness, & make Cyclone castable in cat/bear (remaining unaffected by predatory swiftness for pvp reasons).

As many have pointed out, we don’t have access to Innervate and Treants (Balance), but beyond these, it’s questionable that Balance gets Typhoon (previously a talent) baseline and then the option to choose another ability (in this case opening up the possibility of Ursol’s Vortex + Typhoon, a strong combo). Perhaps an actual Balance ability should be added for their affinity, like Solar Beam? Instead they now get 2 new abilities, while specs like Feral only gain 1 of these. This is further widening the utility gap, but an even bigger issue is Guardian losing access to both of these – this alone should be enough to address the issue of Typhoon now being a baseline Balance spell.

Of course these specs now gain access to our utility (Stampeding Roar), so add that to the list.

Heart of the Wild is a massive bonus for Resto with catweaving. Basically useless for Feral, we’ll be using Balance affinity because the range is a dps and survivability boost; obviously very limited scenarios where we’d benefit from going Moonkin + HOTW. Resto is already a dominant spec in mythic+, and HOTW feels like something unpruned almost exclusively for them. I don’t see HOTW being taken over Bash for PVP either unless it gets a shorter CD.

So with that begs the question, what was unpruned for Feral? Many Feral’s dislike the huge Survival Instincts nerf to get the much weaker Barkskin. Cyclone I addressed above. Talent tuning is not what will fix our utility and perception issues. Shadowlands increases the gap between Feral and the desired Druid specs, particularly our DPS counterpart (Boomy).

Indeed you might say Feral has decent mythic+ utility, but if that’s the case then you should consider the fact Balance and Resto may simply have too much; even the feedback at the start of this thread months ago suggested as much, and an optimal group would only want 1 druid so why bring Feral? Our group utility also can’t compete with DH or Rogue, the later who can now dispel enrage in all specs (one of the things we’re even considered for). DK’s anti magic zone is a strong raid/group CD, warrior gets spell reflect which is likely to be crazy for mythic+, and while I’m not going to list great things unpruned for all specs, please consider the question: what was unpruned for Feral?

My suggestion is quite simple: just bring us in line with other Druid specs. There’s no reason why Balance, the other Druid DPS, should be able to do everything we can yet so much more. You don’t see such utility gaps between different Rogue or War etc specs, so I think Feral/Balance could be treated like a pure DPS class in regards to utility; without such it will result in more kitties kicked for not being the right spec when joining a mythic+ group. Equality for Druid’s, or give Feral something unique if you wish to diversify the class. It’s a simple solution that would also actually give something ‘unpruned’ to Feral, like every other spec in the game going into Shadowlands.

Lastly regarding rotation/mechanics, as Psybear mentioned BT is awkward to use on AOE. I sincerely hope this does not lead to Moment of Clarity (MOC) being the choice for AOE, as my impression of this talent always was the ‘newer player’ mindless alternative to BT. I look forward to testing this more when tuning is done, and hope BT will still be viable for AOE, but I think including Swipe would be a great addition. Furthermore upon testing BT only seems to buff the Rip portion of Primal Wrath, but not the instant damage (whereas old BT buffed it all), further adding to my concerns. BT could possibly include Primal Wrath in its entirety, therefore change BT from ‘Rip and Bite’ to ‘Finishers.’ Also Scent of Blood is seemingly the only dead talent left for Feral, besides maybe Heart of the Wild. Recent talent changes were fantastic overall, the emphasis on dots is welcome and what makes Feral fun and unique over other melee.

41 Likes

Time for a moonkin post. The context for this post is having done every dungeon, some M+10 keys, and the four bosses that were recently tested.

This is also from a PvE/PvM-er only point of view. I don’t dabble in PvP very much and will not pretend to do so. I will leave that to those much more qualified than I.

The Good

The spec from a game-play perspective feels pretty good. Barring number tuning and looking at solely how the spec plays, it’s good. Not great, but good. Starfall feels rewarding to hit, having interactions between abilities (Starsurge extending active eclipses) feels good. The concept of timing eclipses or modifying your opener to hit different eclipses at different times.

Generally, the spec feels okay. I don’t want to spend much time on things that shouldn’t have action taken against them, so let’s jump right into the nitty gritty.

I have to thank that you’ve seemed relatively receptive to feedback for balance, thus leading to my post in hopes that we can see some more positive refinements before release.

What can be improved (from my experience)

For easy navigation, main take-aways are located in bulletpoint lists. Scroll for those and look for bold if you care only about the takeaways.

Numbers feel a little low on the ST side (for extended fights, short term burst is fine). This is also directly connected to the next issue: talents.

This was one of the most annoying parts about BfA: talents had such a minor impact on performance. This is especially the case for the level 50 row.

  • Shooting Stars vs Fury of Elune vs New Moon
    I think most balance players can agree the Shadowlands (and BfA) version of this talent row feels really pointless. You can take any 3 of the talents in any situation and do almost the same damage (barring maybe 5+ target stacked cleave for FoE), within a margin of about 1-2%
  • What is a solution? Give them roles. This row screams “situational” but doesn’t deliver. Each talent realistically only needs one small tweak.
    • Shooting Stars - Remove or lessen the effect of multiple targets on its proc rate.
    • Fury of Elune - buff its damage by like 30-40% so that it can compete with shooting stars’ generation on multi-target.
    • New Moon - Make the cooldown scale with haste (or just reduce the CD) so that this talent is in line with the prior talents.

This will also help ail ST issues because you’re allowing for a greater astral power generation in cases where SS is likely your main ability, while keeping AoE generation in tact (as to prevent overgeneration of astral power for endless starfall) – I’m aware that the main concern with changing this row can end up enabling Starfall too easily, it’s thin ice to walk on for tuning these.

The level 15 row also feels a bit clunky after the NB nerf, but it’s less impactful than the level 50 row from my experience. Pressing Fury of Elune, a “beam of pure celestial energy”, should feel impactful.

  • Next up, eclipses don’t feel like eclipses. I word it like this because it just feels like a trigger to spam an ability for X seconds. There is nothing special about them and are just means of an end to a rotation. In my and many others’ opinion, they need something.
  • Some examples I’ve seen thrown around of what could be done (not necessarily should be done)
    • Entering Lunar Eclipse summons a full moon on your target. Entering a Solar Eclipse summons a pack of treants to attack your target.
    • Bring back “Blessing of the Ancients” from Legion but the two forms are our eclipses. So in Lunar Eclipse, spells generate 25% more astral power and in Solar Eclipse you passively generated 2 AP per 3 seconds.
    • Solar eclipse increases damage to enemies (or reduced damage dealt by enemies) within 20 yards by X%. Lunar eclipse does the same, but for enemies greater in the 20-45 yard range.
    • Entering Lunar Eclipse enables the trait Orbit Breaker trait from Torghast (every 20 moonfire ticks spawns a Full Moon), this trait would only increment during lunar eclipse and would pause when outside of it. Entering a Solar Eclipse enables the Soulborne Clasp trait from Torghast (enemies that die have their DoTs transferred to a new target nearby) – I’m a huge fan of this approach, as it gives additional reason to enter the opposite eclipse (e.g. solar during aoe, lunar during ST) and can make timing eclipses even more interesting

(removed minor min-max part as it’s ultimately minor compared to other things I mention here)

Now we’ll talk about the Primordial Arcanic Pulsar legendary effect. If we had BfA AP generation, this would be a really really solid legendary. However, because our generation got cut a lot, it feels a little bit weaker than it should be (or at least, Oneth’s feels much stronger). There’s two changes I would propose:

  • Reduce the cost to activate from 400 to 350 or, what I think is the more preferable change,
  • Make the effect activate on damage instance NOT cast
    • So many people are making a ratio comparison to BfA Pulsar that is slightly incorrect. They compare 9 SS for 6 seconds of CA, so a 1.5:1 ratio. We currently have a ~13.3 SS to 9 seconds of CA, so 1.47:1 (better than BfA). On paper, this is a cool. However, due to my main point above, we actually lose 1.5 seconds (or gcd equivalent) in the buff! So it’s actually 13.3 SS to 7.5 seconds of CA, so a 1.77:1 ratio (about 18% less efficient than BfA). And no, the SS that would hit after the buff is active does not gain eclipse benefit, unlike in BfA where it would have given a streaking star hit too. Altogether, this makes the legendary feel a bit underpowered since we’re losing effectively 1 of 6 GCDs in the duration.

Lastly, some scaling issues.

  • Make Starfall scale with haste – enough said, really. This will deal a flat 11 ticks per cast regardless of haste level. No partial ticks like regular DoTs, nor does it have bonus ticks at haste thresholds.
  • Let Celestial Alignment duration be arbitrary again – However, cap it’s duration gain (and potentially even reduce the extension to 1.5 per starsurge instead of 3 for double eclipses). Just like you did to the MW Rising Mists haste corruption build in the current tier, cap it for CA’s extension mechanic.
    • This was one of the most iconic parts of using SotF/Starlord and also starts to allow for mini-breakpoints in haste. This should hopefully prevent any sort of crazy scaling issue down the line and also provides an interactive point for stats (though in the negative direction here, to make you want to gear away from haste if you meet this threshold).
    • This change also enables Convoke the Spirits to fill a gap that a low amount of haste exposes, since we can use Convoke’s starsurges as a “steroid” to get us a large amount of the way there when we lack the haste to do it ourselves.

tl;dr – fix the level 50 row to be impactful and situational, add an additional layer of functionality to eclipses, some minor minmax stuff, pulsar legendary should have lower proc threshold or proc off hit not cast, make starfall scale with haste, revert CA change but cap the extension,

The Bugs

These have likely been reported many times by myself and others. But just in case,

  • Casting Celestial Alignment while an eclipse is active will consume the eclipse, not grant the buff, and put it CA on cooldown. This is making playing anything but Incarn too sub-optimal to bother with.
  • Convoke the Spirits, if cast between 41-45yds from an enemy unit, will cast ONLY healing spells. Despite Balance druids having a 45 yard range on moonfire and starsurge, it will only cast healing abilities. This feels REALLY bad to think you’re about to pop a damage CD only to start spam healing the raid. You don’t even cast starfall to enable yourself to move back in range of the boss during the cast to get some benefit.

My Hopes

So we currently have two legendaries left that are unreleased. Here’s some things I would like to see:

  • If not introduced as part of another system, the Orbit Breaker trait could make Twin Moons a viable choice on AoE instead of pretty much strictly Stellar Drift due to how powerful Starfall is.
  • Some sort of CA/Incarn reduction legendary would be really cool. Whether it’s a flat % like VoP minor or we re-introduce Impeccable Fel Essence from Legion, being able to adapt your major cooldown for different fight timings would help us remain relevant on different types of fights.
  • A generic extra-talent legendary would also go a long way. Particularly for the first or last row to give extra astral power generation.

For soulbinds,

  • Dark Star and Star Shower are A+ conduits, keep these 100%. Dark Star especially pushes the earlier point on making eclipses feel more impactful
  • The other two are pretty unimpactful and bland. Instead of Chase the Sun, I would love to see a Dark Star variant for Solar Wrath, basically enabling us to use eclipses as a way to refresh DoTs, mostly useful for ST, if we have both equipped.
  • For the last, instead of “every 3rd SS is 30% increased damage” make it “every 3rd SS gains #% increased benefit from mastery” so that it scales with a stat and has gains scaling potential later into the expansion – this also punishes starsurging outside of eclipses, reinforcing good habits.

Other side notes, mostly minor ramblings:

  • A pipe dream, but I do hope to see New Moons go baseline and a talent replace it that can enable that row to be balanced as a heavy DPS row (it’s hard to balance with moons being a decently high generation talent)
16 Likes

Some quick thoughts on Covenant abilities. First, the Kyrian ability feels pretty bad when you’re solo, since a 10% DPS buff for 10s on the GCD is practically not worth pressing. I honestly think it could be moved to 20% (still worse than when bonded) and should have its visuals upgraded again. My ideal world would have it be akin to GoaK or Wings, with a Kyrian angel coming down to infuse you.

Next, the Maldraxxus ability feels really good on single targets, both as a healer and as a feral DPS, but falls off completely in AoE healing and DPS situations. Because it’s not tuned to be a big button all on its own, the oomph seems to come from the 20% HoT/DoT amp. If that amp applied in a small radius around the target, so that even while it was in its “alternate” form you still got the bonus regardless of your role, I think it would feel much better.

7 Likes

As a feral, I’d give up most of that useless utility for some real utility… An agro dump (cower), a missdirect, an imunity, or an escape (real symbiosis would’ve taken care of that).

Hell, I’d be happy if they just balanced the classes BEFORE piling on all the gimmicks - such as artifact weapons, legendaries, azerite power, essences, corruption, covenants and/or soulbinds.

23 Likes

So I’ve been putting together my feedback for a week or so of testing. For context, I’m a veteran from vanilla who was very hard core back then but slowly got more casual before becoming an on-off player past MoP. I played a lot of Legion and mostly skipped BFA entirely but had a big resurgence with Classic where I put in a lot of time. Of all of this I have mained a Druid for literally all of it outside MoP (where I played a Monk) I enjoy the Classic rpg style leanings lot more than modern Wows on rail leanings but I promise I love both dearly so I apologise if I ruffle feathers.

Warning: Long, Long Post inc:

General Druid -

Unpruning -

  • Can we please have Mark of the Wild back as a baseline?
    It feels weird to think about but I really, really miss our buff the most. The unpruning is a godsend for the most part but the small social stuff is what I miss most and Classic feels so much more friendly. Things like players being able to throw buffs on each other really add to that community and every time I meet someone who lends me a hand I automatically reach for Mark and am saddened to remember it is gone.

  • Heart of the Wild is not something that should be a “talent”:
    I firmly believe this spell is the most “Druid” ability that has ever been in the game (apart from Symbiosis but oh boy was that problematic…). The flexibility it provides and the options it enables is literally the Druid calling card. It says “Hybrid” like nothing else!
    Sooooo, why is this a talent? It should be baseline! I doubt you will never find a better ability to be our capstone ability (reaching level 100 or similiar).

  • Restoration is the only spec that feels completely isolated from the rest of the class:
    A big feeling I have for Druids in Shadowlands is that specializations are being treated as option for focussing on aspects again and not entirely seperate mini-classes. I am thrilled by this and Druids in particular are looking much more like Druids and not just "Moonkin, “Bear” etc. We use Cat and bear in all specs and even things like Moonfire have relevance to Feral in talents etc.

The one exception is Resto, which still feels very oddly seperate. You pretty much can’t heal beyond topping yourself up as a Non-Resto unless you specifically take Resto affinity. No other spec has this issue and its a bit jarring. Furthermore I consider Hots an iconic part of the Druid toolkit and yet the only one we get has a cast time? With so few heals available baseline new players get almost no idea what Resto is like to encourage them to pick that specialization.

I feel this is wrong. Rolling hots on your party between mobs is an important part of Druid flavour and hotting yourself between pulling mobs to “heal as you go” is very iconic and should be experienced by all Druids.

Therefore I propose that Rejuvenation should be a baseline spell. Resto affinity still offers plenty (more than the other options by far I believe actually?) and 2 hots to play with isn’t going to break the complexity bank.

General Irritations -

  • Prowls animation looks ridiculous moving at full speed with a standard run animation. It used to have its own animation for sneaking. It looked a bit silly when they decided you should move full speed in stealth but it looked a lot less silly than a full bounding sprint. Can we have it back or a new version of it back please?

  • Can Druids please get Maul or a similiar ability back for bear form baseline? As any spec other than Guardian, you are just sitting and autoing in between Mangles unless you Swipe (unthematic and risks breaking cc) and thats exceptionally boring. Heck just removing the cooldown from Mangle would work.

Customisation -

  • Can Druid form appearances please be changed at either the same npc that lets you swap epic flight form out or just our general Druid class trainers (lord knows they need something to do now)? It feels incredibly un-thematic for a “barber” to swap my Seal to a Dolphin.

On that note: Consider replacing barbers with something like an Ethereal that alters you magically. With even gender swaps being in-game now, we’re well past just hair alterations here.

  • It would be nice if Moonkin form got a customisation tab option like the other forms too.

Balance Spec (My main spec of recent) -

  • Controversial Opinion: I have always disliked Moonkin and thats only gotten worse over time with the removal of effects like Moonkin aura that are actually tied to the form. Now it really just feels like a restriction on our casting that happens to make us a bit more tanky. I am aware that it is the holy grail of the spec to many so I would never advocate its removal. Rather it should be a talent.

My request is that you baseline Treants for Balance and replace the ability on the first talent tier row with Moonkin form so those who love the form aren’t forced to go without it long for levelling. Then just tie a small dps increase to it so it competes fairly with the other 2 passive options on the row. Boom, Moonkin lovers keep their form, the rest of us take a passive. No-one loses dps or active abilities and those of us who want to be traditional Druids like Malfurion can.

  • Can the Level 40 talent options for Balance please get an active ability option? All 3 being passives or a replacement feels bad when ones forced to pick between some very cool spells later. Swapping one of the options with New Moon or Fury of Elune would be my personal hope as I loved having both during Legion and choosing makes me sad.

  • I like the return of Eclipse but it isn’t exactly user friendly to figure out. I’d suggest a tab for the spellbook giving a rough rundown on how your specs unique mechanic works. I think such a system would likely benefit everyone not just Balance Druids. Alternatively, the idea someone mentioned earlier for reusing the old Blessing of the Ancients is a very good one.

  • Moonfire is not under my “Balance” spell book tab, only the main “Druid” tab. Bug?

Feral Spec -

  • Feral feels a bit under-equipped utility wise compared to Balance. I see little reason to take it over the other but I also think making spells exclusive like Stampeding Roar is a bad option as Druids finally feel whole again. Instead I advocate for Feral spec alone to get something new to emphasise their focus (cat form).

I propose a blast from the past, give Feral “Play Dead” from way back in Classic beta and it was also one of MoPs “Symbiosis” options. (For those unaware: https://wow.gamepedia.com/Play_Dead ). I feel this would emphasises their rogue aspect well and provide some great general utility that isn’t just a straight group buff like LotP.

Note: I like Lotp but in a world where such utility isn’t common it would only throw the pendulum out the other direction and make Balance look terrible. That and its an incredibly unexciting passive. General sentiments to BFA passives seems to be quite clear we have quite enough of that gameplay as is.

  • Dislike that Shred has become a “catch all” ability, it requiring you be behind the target was iconic. Please restore that function and just return mangle to Cat as well as Bear.

Phew, got it all out. More eventually but i’m glad I got my initial writeup done!

17 Likes

Balance druid feedback - first impressions
Long term balance druid feedback - have been playing balance since WotLK and experienced every different iteration of the spec

Abilities:
Stampeding roar and typhoon baseline - Yes. extremely welcome additions.

Core rotation:

  • The core single target rotation of Wrath/Starfire + starsurge is OK.

  • The rotation flows well, and is very predictable.

  • Eclipse is interesting at first, but ultimately, due to high uptime, i feel this effect loses its “wow factor”. The proc happens, and you continue on autopilot casting the same spells you would be anyway. If eclipse was not part of the toolkit, i dont think it would ultimately affect the spec that much

  • Eclipse does add a “challenge” of being in the right eclipse at the right time. This may be seen as interesting, but as in prior expansions may lead to odd cases where you simply do not want to trigger a new eclipse

  • Dots do not seem to fit well into the single target rotation. They lack any form of interaction with the spec whatsoever outside of shooting stars and the starfall dot extension. - should we cast during eclipse and lose out on increased builder damage? should we let them drop and only recast out of eclipse?

  • The Aoe rotation maintaining dots, extending with starfall and then building astral power is enjoyable.

  • Managing eclipse throughout the redotting/extending process during aoe appears simple enough

Talents:

  • T15:

    • Natures balance appears quite weak at first glance. passive option, with “math” making it the best choice, or not the right choice.
    • Warrior of Elune fits nicely with the eclipse mechanics. Enjoyable to use during Lunar eclipses
    • Force of nature appear strong and great thematic ability still. Fun to play
  • T25: No change

  • T30:

    • Really like the additional utility brought in with these rows. i left similar feedback in BFA beta, and im glad to see it implemented. Being able to pick up ursols vortex alongside typhoon and mass entangle make you feel like you are a master of control. Really happy with this
  • T35:

    • Bash and Mass entangle remain fine.
    • Heart of the wild - LONG cooldown and LONG duration. i will probably give this one a miss, the days of HotW tranquility from boomies is gone, and unless fights are designed around this effect (or other similar “tricks”) i dont see an incredible need for this.
  • T40:

    • Soul of the forest: Could be interesting/fun to be in eclipse for the extended periods on occasion, but ultimately i feel adds to the issues with the rotation. Now we are in eclipse for even longer, casting the same 2 spells for extended periods of time, and dots seem to not fit in even more.
    • Starlord : passive haste gain is a stable choice and doesnt require too much management to be effective. ultimately not the most “fun ability” but i dont feel this contributes to any issues.
    • Incarnation: no real change here, very powerful 3 minute cooldown. feels great to use.
  • T45:

    • Stellar Drift - Makes multidotting and starfalling feel great. Takes the pressure off building asp between starfalls and allows osme extra surges in, combined with the movement. Great ability.
    • Twin moons - no change
    • Stellar Flare - another dot to manage, and another dot detracting from eclipse. Does not benefit from starfalls dot extension, severly limiting the number of targets this spell is useful on. even on 3 targets this begins to feel not great.
  • T50:

    • Shooting stars remains passive and a decent choice for a more passive gameplay.
    • Fury of Elune - fun to press, nice cooldown. seems to fit well.
    • Moons - another spell that doesnt tie in to eclipse. Finding the time to cast this feels odd to me when the goal is to be back in eclipse. The long cooldown kind of detracts from the big impact.

Overall i feel like the base rotation is OK, albeit a little bland.
Very little in the moonkin toolkit is available to spice up the rotation much, and many aspects seem to contradict or go against the idea behind the eclipse proc.
Dots appear to be taking a back seat for moonkin and do not tie in well with the spec currently which is unfortunate, so i would hope to see something done in that area. Maybe an extension of the eclipse mechanic that applied to dot refreshes within their respective eclipse.

Spec: Guardian

First I want to mention the change to Swiftmend feels really bad for Guardian. I loved being able to shapeshift out of bear form, pop a swiftmend on myself or party member, and quickly go right back into bear from. This type of versatility is part of what made druid fun to play despite its rather basic tanking “rotation”. Please reconsider this change for non resto druids at minimum.

Some of our talents feel out of place. This problem was created by attaching Typhoon and Vortex to their respective affinity. You created 2 completely unnecessary holes in the talent tree that were replaced with talents that don’t fit the theme of the talent tier they were placed in. Renewal should not be competing with movement talents. Heart of the wild should not be competing with CC abilities. Please revert the changes to Typhoon and Ursol’s Vortex and make renewal and heart of the wild baseline.

Dead talents. Lunar beam is still awful. Not sure I can really give any more feedback on this that hasn’t already been said a hundred times. There are going to be even more dead talents in Shadowlands because of the awkard positioning of Renewal and Heart of the wild.

Maul still feels weird. I understand the design goal of giving us a rage dump when we don’t need to use ironfur but it still feels lacking. The baseline guardian tanking feels like it needs one more button and maul seems like it should fill that void.

20 Likes

Some assorted minor changes in an upcoming build, just noting here:

–Convoke the Spirits can be channeled while moving, in all forms.

–Adaptive Swarm (damage swarm) will try to favor targets that have Moonfire or Rip active. It will not, however, merge/stack two swarms together if it can avoid it. The healing swarm was already pretty smart and there are no further changes to it right now.

–Bloodtalons: trigger changed from “use Shred, Rake, and Thrash” to “use any 3 different generators”. Continuing on from a lot of feedback on this, the goal is to make it more flexible, and cause fewer rotation clashes, while still requiring a moment of planning to trigger.

–Runecarve currently called Druid Runecarve 3 on beta (DoT/HoT tick rate): this was incomplete/ambiguous in the last build, but we are trying a version that compresses both tick rates and durations, taking from old abilities like Jagged Wounds and Glyph of Rapid Rejuvenation. That should be in and working next build for testing.

24 Likes

Something I feel is missing is a deeper reason to bring underrepresented specs like ferals and guardians to raids and mythic+. In a raid it’s not super hard to get a monk in - but in keys, you rarely see ferals and once in awhile have a guardian.

Adding 5% physical debuff (mystic touch) to them would definitely give a really compelling reason to have a feral druid over a ww monk (or brm). It could possibly round out guardian quite a bit better as well.

17 Likes

And still nothing for Guardian.

42 Likes

The problem with your “re-imagined” Bloodtalens is that you require us to overwrite Thrash, Rake, and/or Moonfire (2 of those listed in combination with Shred) regardless if we have a stronger Thrash, Rake, or Moonfire already on the target. Remember, Ferals still snap shot like it or not (also try to remember that Thrash, Rake, and Moonfire are dots NOT filler spells whether you like it or not). Please go back to the drawing board with this crap.

8 Likes

Big thanks to quality of life change of bloodtalons. It’s really great to see you actually change this talent to be more logical in case of AE damage.
But can ferals and guardians finally get some unique group utility? There’s no any point of taking feral or guardian to a group just because resto or balance have the same abilities and even more.

24 Likes

Let me expand on this - I am really liking Adaptive Swarm and this seems to be one of the stronger choices for feral atm. It makes sense, we are a bleed based class and this increases our bleeds by 20%. However, you are making us over write 2 of those bleads every time we need to “reacquire” blood talons buff. It just doesn’t work.

While many didn’t like the “old” Bloodtalons because it didn’t feel right casting a heal in your rotation - I guess I never looked at it like that. I looked at it like I was wasting that GCD on a buff. What other class in the game would cast a short lived buff that ALSO healed them. That “buff”, which also healed, added to our survivability and it didn’t require re-applying our dots to a target which may or may not already have a more powerful version of that dot on it.

Again - Thrash, Rake, and Moonfire are DOTS not filler spells.

10 Likes

Thrash is more +20% to swipe damage thing. It’s not a damage spell.

Thrash is an AoE bleed - an AoE dot. We do not have azerite in shadowlands to do what you are saying at the ferals base (no Soulbinds).

Further more… what ever happened to “it feels bad to be forced to cast AoE abilities in single target” which is why Thrash got nerfed 2? expacs ago.

12 Likes

Hey, thanks for taking all our feedback about Guardian and doing something about it during the Alpha and Beta cycles.

Oh, just kidding, I guess you all think the class is fine. :slight_smile:

Well, maybe when Mythic comes out and the representation of Guardian is less than 1% and there are 0 druids doing Mythic+ past 15 in Shadowlands you’ll eventually figure out the problems with the class.

Or maybe not! Maybe you’ll all just keep being so very communicative with us over it! Oh, who am I kidding, I’ve given up hope on Guardian for this expansion even before it’s come out - thanks so much! :slight_smile:

42 Likes