FEEDBACK: Druid Class Changes

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

The lack of response to anything guardian related is concerning.

I’m not going to go into detail the issues with guardian, as others have outlined them far more clearly than I can in the thread above, but I did want to respond with my support for the fact that the class needs changes.

I’ve been a guardian main since wrath, this is the first expansion I’m seriously considering another class, and that makes me really sad. I feel like we were already the tank with the least utility, and we’re going into SL with less.

Pay attention to us. Several people have given very detailed posts about the problems with guardian on beta that have gone unacknowledged.

46 Likes

The arcanic pulsar themed legendary feels really bad to play with. You only want to starsurge during eclipse so you’re likely to trigger this effect during an eclipse. Triggering this legendary with incarnation as a talent puts a 30s buff for both eclipses up, overwriting any active eclipse you have. The triggered eclipses can’t be extended but expire as soon as the temporary incarn expires. When the incarn expires it drops you out of the eclipse you were in when you triggered it.

Oneth’s feels good to play for the most part but it is lacking a default ui poweraura.

Pawsitive Outlook themed legendary feels terrible as guardian. Fishing for burst threat feels like twilight dev on live and based on instinct it seems like the Luffa’s would be the strictly better choice as it provides more damage and a defensive benefit through rend and tear. I loved this as an artifact trait with Luffa’s in Legion but it seems like putting this as a direct competitor to Luffa’s leaves guardian with one less legendary option until we can equip multiple legendaries.

The Barkskin legendary feels like an extremely powerful defensive option and I’m really grateful for this as an option. Having this to fill in the major guardian weakness of spike damage on pull feels excellent.

Rage of the Sleeper legendary feels great.

5 Likes

Does anyone else think the Venthyr ability Ravenous Frenzy shouldn’t have a downside?

No other ability from what I see has a negative to it like this. Lets say you use it during heroism and get to 15 stacks but then a mechanic happens where you are idle for 1.5 seconds suddenly you are hit for 45% of your hp.

It is basically useless in arena from what I can tell. I still need to test it to see but happens if the other team sees you pop this, lets you build up to 10 stacks then los you for 1.5 seconds or stun you? (Does getting stunned trigger it? ) You will have 30% of your hp drop and get stunned for 1 second. No other ability from what I have seen can be taken advantage of by the other team and possibly cost you a match. It is going to feel bad for players that want to go Venthyr, maybe go boomy for most content and venthyr seems good with haste buff but then want to heal in arena as pressing their covenant ability will come with a large risk.

On top of that as a bear, losing ~30% of my health and being stunned for 1 second could wipe my party if I am not careful.

15 Likes

I guess it depends on who you’re weighing it against. Versus the covenant abilities that say, paladins or mages have, this one is incredibly strong and deserves the downside. Versus some of the ones for death knights or warlocks though, then yeah maybe not so much. So I guess it depends on where that balancing stick is supposed to be.

So, now that I’ve played SL Balance as in an intro character, a max level character, a few other premade SL characters and an imported character, I have to say that I really dislike Eclipse in its current form, at least for leveling and open world content. Most non-elites die too fast for Solar Eclipse to be useful, and for rounding up enemies and using mass AoE, it feels like extending Lunar Eclipse with Starsurge is way less effective than just maintaining Starfall. Also having Starsurge tied to the Eclipse empowerments disincentivizes me, personally at least, from using Starsurge outside of an eclipse for fear of “wasting” it. And while this might be due to my hesitance to use Starsurge outside of Eclipse, Starsurge feels like it’s lacking heft, even when it crits.

It’s quite possible that for dungeons and raids the current Eclipse will feel alright, but for just running around wrecking up the place, I feel like it’s less an ignorable mechanic than a mechanic that you really have to strain to work into your rotation, so for outdoor content it’s not really useful or fun. And I don’t know how to make it more enjoyable.

But I’m on record as never being a fan of Eclipse, and I’ve been in the Balance game since all we had was Hurricane. I think this is the best version of Eclipse that we’ve had since Wrath, but that version of Eclipse was barely comparable to all the others we’ve had since. I don’t think “Eclipse as the core mechanic” has ever worked well, and I don’t see it working well this expansion either, at least not in its current form.

TL;DR - I feel like Eclipse as a “core mechanic” is too awkward/clunky to fit into leveling and outdoor content.

5 Likes

re: Travel Form.

I don’t understand why Travel Form is being changed at all. The way it currently is, in this build, we don’t get equivalent movement speed on the ground until levels 24 and then 36. As for Flight speed, Travel Form is now limited to 150%? So if we want to fly at the fasted possible speed we are required to use a regular mount? Why? Because Travel Form is instant cast? IMO that is a pretty lame excuse.

More choice, not less. I am hoping this will change before Shadowlands goes Live.

38 Likes

Hello!

M+ Bear here with some first thoughts on the feel of Bear in dungeons in Beta. I tank 24s-26s in live at the moment which may give me a unique perspective.

Pros:

  • Not having to take Vortex over Wild Charge is really nice! I love having charge again. It always feels bad having bear as my only spec without charge.
  • Really excited about the new Incarn/Beserk legendary giving us damage plus leech when active. This is really going to give us a better big button to press.

Cons:

  • Swiftmend feels really bad at the moment. It has been said already, but needs reiteration as being able to instant cast Swiftmend on yourself or an ally is clutch in special circumstances. I cannot tell you how many times I have Bullrushed out of combat, Swiftmended myself, went right back into bear and lived when I would have died in that circumstance in Beta.
  • Losing the ability to Typhoon is rough. Typhoon and Vortex go together like peanut butter and jelly (or perhaps you prefer lamb and tuna fish?). Missing out on Typhoon, as there really isn’t a choice of affinities in high keys, is bad. We won’t notice it nearly as much in beta, but not having it on Sanguine week or on a caster heavy dungeon like SotS for grouping mobs, is going to feel bad.

Things to Improve:

  • Having Cyclone is a great addition to our toolkit in M+, but it might be beneficial to allow us to cast it in bear form. Having to spend valuable time casting a CC is already rough tanking, but having to pop form to do this makes it near impossible in combat. With a 6 second duration, it’s not very practical to clone a mob pre-pull so it is going to be a spell that is widely unused. I would love to either see this castable in bear, or have its duration on mobs be increased to 30-60 seconds to give it some value.
  • We haven’t seen Druid conduits yet, but I would love to see a conduit that would decrease the CD of Incarn/Beserk by X for every Y rage we spend similar to Anger Management from Warriors. Having a big CD every 3 minutes is nice, but having it up more frequently would be nicer. This alone would increase bear representation in M+ significantly.
  • Night Fae ability Soulshape needs to let us stay in Bear form if we cast it in Bear. Some times, as with most tanks, there are gaps in mitigation/healer CDs, so having an out is extremely effective at living a pull where you should die. Soulshape feels really great for this, however popping form to cast it feels really bad. Say for instance we are trying to distance ourselves from some mobs on Necrotic week, but there are 1-2 casters/ranged mobs in the pack. We pop Soulshape and we lose the ability to survive the next pack.
  • Night Fae ability Convoke the Spirits seems to value Thrash very little while in Bear form. I haven’t been able to do extensive testing on this, but my last three didn’t even include 1 Thrash in the rotation. This seems like it might be bugged?

Overall Bear Issues Not Related to Beta:

  • Mentioned above about surviving while popping form. This is a problem Bears have had for a while. Being 100% dependent on being in Bear form is rough for our survival in niche circumstances. For instance, in Motherlode, back in Seasons 1-3 when people were skipping the RND section. Most tanks could just mount up and gather the mobs away while the group death ran to the next section, not bears though, because we can’t mount in Bear. We had to speed pot into stampeding roar to cover the distance. If something went wrong, we would have to wait for CDs to attempt this again. And with the changes to consumables in SL, speed pots will be an even bigger problem when grouping mob packs. The same issue came up in non-rogue runs of Tol Dagor where a normal tank could enter the cannon and get healed through a couple of shots. Bears cannot enter vehicles in Bear form so we lose that. I am not 100% on the solution here, but it is a common problem. Maybe let us mount in Bear form similar to how you can mount in Moonkin form?
  • Frenzied Regen on the GCD is really rough. Losing a potentially rage generating GCD to cast a heal that costs rage itself often times gives us further gaps in survival by missing an Ironfur. It’s not just the reaction time of hitting Regen, a tank shouldn’t be as reactive and should prepare to use it, I agree, but not being able to hit our abilities simultaneously feels really bad. This one button I would strongly recommend for consideration of GCD removal.
  • Skull Bash being a charge interrupt is awful. There is a really rough range mechanic to our interrupt that means if we are just outside melee range, we charge in to the center of a mob’s hit box, some times forcing us to take hits to the back. Just last week I was tanking 26 JY and charged in to interrupt a toxic bolt and got melee hit from “behind” from the toxic monstrosity for over 1 mill damage. I have to be extra cautious when interrupting to avoid situations like this. Take Shrine of the Storm as well. I assign interrupts on 3rd boss to our melee dps as it can be lethal to be forced to charge in with my interrupt when the balls are floating around. Same goes for Yazma in AD with the spiders. I have to assign a range interrupt as backup. Easy solution for this, make Skullbash Charge a talent choice in place of Renewal, and either remove Renewal for Bears or make it baseline. It will never be more valuable than charge. I think if you do this, you will see a large % of the playerbase that prefers having a standard interrupt.

Despite the issues with Bear, I love playing it as I also enjoy playing ranged DPS in raid and playing Healer in M+. I play Bear primarily as I like playing multiple specs/roles for content I enjoy without having to do weekly chores across multiple characters. So I play arguably a sub-par tank. I am excited for a lot of potential in SL to improve an already fun tank to play.

33 Likes

I actually like the idea of Druid land travel form being slightly slower than regular mounts because I like using mounts and they’re pretty a much non-choice compared to an instant cast, daze-dismount immune form. I preferred travel when it was a ghost wolf analogue before the mount speed glyph was baselined.

Flight being nerfed though, is baffling. In that case pretty much all flying mounts are very similiar and dismounting pretty much doesnt happen so the Druid advantage is much smaller and choosing a mount instead was a lot more viable particularly with mount equipment. Not sure why this is a lower speed now.

2 Likes

Hey there! Apeu of Area 52 here, longtime resto druid player. Here’s some feedback about things I’ve noticed while playing resto on the beta (mostly night fae but I have a druid in each covenant and have tested them fairly well):

Convoke the spirits

  • This spell has some inconsistencies still; it has used Flourish and Full Moon in their respective forms even though neither spell is listed as usable in the tooltip and can be very swaying in the outcome if either one was to occur at an opportune time.
  • The change that allows us to move while casting is fantastic and has been amazing to play.

Other changes

  • Innervate: the spell’s use is completely unchanged in 5 man content such as mythic+ but now pretty much requires us to use it on a friendly healer while in a raid to max out the benefit.

While this is a cool idea, it falls short in action because this is both our output and mana cooldown, and is now effectively nerfed by 50% in raid and the full benefit is given to someone else on top of that.

There needs to be symbiotic incentive for this spell to go on another player, and not just a simple “buy one, get one 50% off” effect. If it were to continue to be in this form, the minimum it would need to give is the full 12 seconds of free casting to both the druid and their friendly healer, since it effectively is no different than a balance druid’s innervate.

  • Overgrowth: This talent makes zero sense where it has been placed, which is the exact same issue that Stonebark had when it had this slot. Why is a single target heal in a row with varied AoE heals rather than being in the level 15 row? I think it would make sense to make this purely a PvP talent again and give an AoE defensive option in that row (which we don’t have yet) perhaps something that doubles the CD of ironbark but makes its effect a 20 yd radius around the target.

  • Germination: This talent falls short compared to its competitors in the level 50 row. What I think it needs is a passive we used to have that reduced the GCD caused by casting rejuv in order to enhance the blanket-the-raid playstyle (and would be great with the new spreading rejuv legendary)

Thanks for reading and look forward to more upcoming changes and to finally get those conduits! :slight_smile:

12 Likes

Some balance druid feedback.

I haven’t played balance for long, i’ve only ever dabbled with it. However I main ele shaman, aotc each tier since legion, etc, etc.

Playing boomkin on beta has been super fun. The one lackluster thing about the new eclipse system (different than live), is that it doesn’t feel impactful going into an eclipse. On live, you’re astral power goes up, you hit a big starsurge then can press either wrath or starfire. I actually really like the idea of eclipse coming back (reminds me of cata/MOP boomkin–when i pvp’d with it a ton).

All of these idea’s seem pretty good.

I’ve actually always liked boomy, but it is slightly more boring in gameplay than ele (at least for me), but I see the ecipse system as being able to improve upon a linear gameplay. I think having going into an eclipse do something will make it feel more impactful.

5 Likes