Kindred Spirits Feedback:
The “Damager” role of the ability reads: Energize your bonded partner, granting them 30% of your damage as additional Arcane damage, healing, or absorption. However, in testing this we realized there is a lot going on with this ability and it doesn’t seem to be working at the rate it says.
How it works:
When you cast it, you and your partner actually get 2 buffs. One that lasts the 10 seconds and does the trading of the damage, and a second buff which lasts 20 seconds and seems to collect the damage your partner is giving you. You then have the duration of the second buff to use the damage you’ve collected. In testing, we noticed a few issues with both aspects of the ability.
1.) Not giving close to 30%
The damage you and your partner trade are wildly inaccurate, and in all the testing we tried we never got anywhere near 30%. Instead, depending on the spec/abilities my partner was using we got more in the range of 10%-12% max. Assuming the 30% is based on the final value of the abilities your partner is putting out, and not some hidden base value of the abilities.
A.) Paired with a boomkin doing convoke+CDs. He did ~70k in the 10 seconds, and I got 5155.
B.) Full CDs Boomkin - did ~60k, got ~6k.
C.) Paired with a boomkin just static damage (no CDs). He did 10k and I got 1186.
D.) Paired with a Feral druid doing a full CD opener with convoke the spirits: 40.6k, and gave 5.1k.
2.) Trickle out damage too slow
The second part of this ability was also giving me difficulty. I understand the need for having a buff that collects the damage, and also not wanting all that damage to dish out on your very next spell/ability. However, the rate at which you trickle out damage is just too low to not have wasted damage. If I paired with someone feeding me ~18K-20K damage, I would regularly waste ~5.5k-7k of that damage. It also depended greatly on what abilities I was pressing. I was testing as a feral druid, and the only way I could actually get close to emptying the damage pool was to use only Shreds+FBs. If I tried to apply bleeds, or use AoE abilities, I would consistently waste close to 7K+. I tested this the most with an Outlaw rogue in dungeons, and that class/spec was feeding me the most damage, but it felt bad to stop my AoE rotation on a big pull and go full Shred+FB to actually get value out of my covenant ability.
~10% damage trade isn’t 30% (not sure if this is a bug or something intended based on hidden values). If the diminished damage is at a level Blizzard is happy with then I would remove the 30% from the description as it sets an expectation. At the moment this just doesn’t feel as rewarding to use with your bonded DPS partner in dungeon or raid settings. The allure of this ability is to synergize and work with your teammate to get the most out of the ability for both players. Sadly, the trickle side of arcane damage also feels bad at the current rate as you are changing your optimal rotation to race against the expiring buff. If I am having to alter my playstyle to use harder hitting abilities to get the most value out of the pool, then most likely my partner would have to do the same (assuming there is some % scaler working behind the scenes). Having to explain to my partner that they need to play differently when I use Kindred Bonds is not healthy gameplay, nor realistic to expect from the other person.
I am curious if other people have tested this ability, in a DPS to DPS bond and are noticing similar numbers or similar issues actually using the damage pool we’re getting.
Thanks for taking the time to read/post. I know Kindred isn’t the favorite ability of druids, but I am curious to see if it is even working as it reads.