FEEDBACK: Druid Class Changes

There’s one Guardian issue I’ve been running into on the beta a LOT that I’m not sure if it has been addressed recently, but it’s actually an existing problem that’s on live: larger enemies and bosses have a decently high change to “wander around” if you’re actively tanking them as a bear and just standing still. At the minimum this mob behavior is erratic and annoying. At worst it’s deadly due to the mobs wandering behind you or facing in unpredictable directions, creating dangerous scenarios for you and your party/raid that are out of your control for the most part.

This isn’t an issue that I tend to run into with when playing other tank classes, as it’s mostly a bear issue and probably have something to do with how mobs calculate movement based upon bears specifically. I’ve even tried tanking in caster form or Moonkin, and this behavior generally doesn’t occur like it does in Bear Form.

I know the ‘standard’ workaround is to try to move out to the maximum hitbox range of the creature, and sometimes this behavior fixes it (but not always). While tanking rares in the world and doing M+ on the beta, I’ve run across creatures/bosses that will either not stop trying to randomly wander while tanking in one spot, or I can be out of my own melee range of the mob yet the mob can still melee me and wander still. Furthermore, if you use gap-closing abilities like Wild Charge, or especially interrupting with Skull Bash, you can end up deep inside a hitbox and the mob will just start wandering again.

Here’s the crux of the matter: players shouldn’t need to have to rely on a partial workaround for an obvious creature AI issue that’s been in the game for a long time now for bears. There are certainly other pressing matters at hand, but this is an issue that shouldn’t be put off any longer than it has been from a QoL standpoint.

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So i only ran a few dungeons this week, but so far… my feeling is feral isnt in a horrible spot. We do need a utility though please. There has been some feedback on this, but we could desperately use something unique to us that will make people want to bring us. Innervate is a start, but id prefer something like lotp for a crit buff… a unique crit buff would be awesome… give groups a reason to bring a feral druid.

Also… for resto affinity on feral it feels really awful to have to rejuv into swiftmeld. For covenants having to shift out of cat to use the fleshcraft ability feels horrible. . Please allow this to channel in cat form. In game im using the legendary that makes dots do damage faster. while i only did a few dungeons i was keeping up damage wise with the others. Thats it for now.

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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.
Examples:
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.

Overall
~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.

4 Likes

Just some short feedback. With the lower haste, and the lower rejuv length, flourish feels very bad (like it’s target capped). It feels even worse to see glimmer of light from paladins have a longer length, and atonement from disc priest have a similar length (but get applied with their aoe). It would be nice to have just 2 more seconds of rejuvenation length, it’s always really fun to put rejuvs on all 20 members of the raid, hit wild growth, then flourish and keep everyone alive.

I think reducing the healing done by rejuv, but making it last longer to achieve this would be nice. Though maybe it would make the class feel like it solely relies on its cds like flourish and tranq again. Another solution might be to have an aoe application of rejuv on something like a 30 second - 1 minute cd, though maybe this is too powerful.

TLDR; not being able to rejuv everyone in raid before damage comes out feels bad, and it feels like some people just don’t get healed when raid wide aoe goes out. This combined with the fact that other healers can heal everyone at the same time if they wanted to makes it feel even worse.

(Also, when balancing, looking at what aoe DR contributes to the raid “healing” would also be appreciated.)

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Very much the above post ^^

Our raid viability has been… unfortunate in BfA. Having raid healing monsters like discipline and (weirdly enough) hpally thanks to glimmer just shuts us out very hard.

Also on the damage reduction topic; why not make damage reductions into something like this for example: Power Word: Barrier absorbs 25% of any damage taken by allies within it for x seconds. Rather than reducing damage and having healers use even MORE 3rd party tools to figure out how much my barrier stopped or how much aura mastery stopped, we can just peek into our meter addon and just know.

Plus this more realistically shows where healers compare to each other. If a resto druid and disc priest do the exact same healing on live right now, the disc did more thanks to the barrier DR that doesnt show up in numbers.

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Shooting Stars baseline thank you and good night

…I see, you’re still here. Ok, two somewhat significant changes to Balance in the upcoming build:

–Shooting Stars is moved baseline on the spec, with a new passive talent taking its place. We generally agree with the feedback that the DoTs didn’t communicate with the rest of the core rotation in any way. It’s a good foundation if the generators, the spenders, and the DoTs all feel like they reinforce each other in some way.

–Starsurge’s interaction with Eclipse is changed: it now increases the Eclipse bonus rather than extending the duration (Eclipse duration will simply be fixed at 15s). It still serves similar goals—Starsurge feeding back into the Eclipse/nuke cycle, as mentioned, and some depth around resource planning/pooling. But overall less frenetic to not have to worry about keeping an Eclipse going, and frankly avoids some likely balance issues that would occur as Eclipse duration scaled nonlinearly with haste. This also allows the Starsurge-Eclipse mechanic to function with Celestial Alignment again, which is a plus.

More minor changes:
–Soul of the Forest adds a new effect to each Eclipse, rather than merely increasing its numbers.
–Shooting Stars procs more often than it had been in beta
–Fixed an error that was causing Moonfire/Sunfire durations to be double-extended by a levelup upgrade. They are intended to be the same as in BFA.
–Increased DoT damage by about 10%.

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There’s really only one way to describe these changes: thank you.

Every single one of these changes are fantastic and I’m ludicrously excited to see how they interact with legendaries and covenants once the servers come back up.

I really hope this type of community-focused development can be continued going forward, as well for many other specs who would really love changes as great as these.

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Still no utility to feral and still no changes to guardian. /sad_agi_druids.jpg

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LOL yeah still waiting for those Guardian changes you keep not actually giving us! Thanks so much for confirming our general thoughts on what you all deem to be relevant tanks!

I’ll be super stoked to see Warrior and Brewmasters as the only viable tanks for M+ and Mythic raids in Shadowlands!

Thanks again for all you’re doing for Guardian, which is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

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I don’t want to take anything away from my fellow druids, I’m glad they are getting some feedback and changes where needed but can we please give guardians a look or get some acknowledgement that you’re looking into the feedback?

Their gameplay has felt stale ever since the BFA pre-patch. Playing through the beta here are my observations/criticisms levelling though 50-60.

We get a DPS cooldown back but it’s been watered down (twice if you include the recent change from 75% to 50% cd reduction) with no fear immunity like it had in WoD and expansions prior I understand we can talent it back to that functionality but honestly I prefer galactic guardian having to make that decision when we never used to doesn’t feel great and honestly it’s not feeling like a dps cooldown when all we’re doing is alternating between mangle and thrash every gcd for 13.5 secs.

Frenzied rejuv is still on a global cooldown and feel clunky to use why this keeps getting ignored when its fed back in developer interviews is beyond me its reactive mitigation that won’t react.

We can get our 15% chance to double thrash back (something I loved in legion)… but it’s wasted on a legendary slot. Even if we’re able to wear multiple legendaries further in shadowlands life cycle this one will still be low down on the list and its a shame as the proc was fun. Can we please have this as a potency conduit (maybe replacing the “mangle increasing maul damage” conduit? I understand there will be ranks 1-15 for conduits so it could start at 7.5% increasing by 0.5 per rank to hit 15% even at the reduced rate initially it’ll still be more useful than increased maul damage and will actually get some use (other legendaries are far too useful to sacrifice for a damage proc).

Speaking of maul, it’s still next to useless and boring to use, its fine when questing in the world and you’re in no real danger but it doesn’t do anything other than damage so in any situation when we’re in danger its a dead button and given some legendaries play into cat/moon weaving we will seldom use it when off tanking.

The covenant abilities aren’t exactly blowing my socks off and don’t change up my gameplay too much which is a blessing in some ways as it means I can just pick the one I like the most thematically but between the legendaries and next to no changes gameplay-wise for guardian the best I can hope for is diet legion gameplay.

I realise this comes off as overly negative and I apologise for that, what you guys have managed to achieve in the current global climate the fact the expansion is coming out at all this year is nothing short of amazing. What I say comes from a place of frustration with BFA’s gameplay and the lack of baseline abilities/utility for guardian spec, given the current reliance on borrowed power without any base spec changes we’re going to be in the exact same situation come 10.0 pre-patch. If I had a wand and could conjure a guardian spec I’d probably take legions artefact gameplay and roll it in baseline minus a few traits (<— this right here is why I’m not a game developer).

A lot of good suggestions by someone who knows more than I here too https://www.wowhead.com/news=317601/guardian-druid-state-on-the-shadowlands-beta-covenant-abilities-legendaries-cond

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Hey there, squeaky wheel here!

Is there a Guardian update anywhere on the horizon?

Any kind of acknowledgment on anything we have said as a community in this thread in regards to Guardian would be a win at this point. Literally, just type out, ‘we hear you Guardians, and we are working on it’.

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I have felt the same way i dont feel inferior damage wise but utility will still make playing the game hard. Not sure what to do about it though everyone but the devs seem to think its fine.

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Or if there aren’t changes coming, just tell us “it’s done.” Or at least post a meme or something if it’s faster.

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Feral main here. Still hoping for some additional talent changes.

Still want to see Bloodtalons changed. Either revert it back to the old BT where it’s CP based or make it ANY 3 generators or a combination of ANY finisher and ANY 2 generators. Forcing us to use ST abilities in AoE to proc it or AoE abilities in ST feels awful. For example, in M+ when you want to prep BT for the next pull. The 4-5 targets you are attacking are bout dead, you pool energy to proc and even though they are about to die, instead of being able to say Swipe 3 times you have to Thrash, Swipe, & Rake despite Thrash/Rake going to get absolutely NO value because the targets are not going to live long enough for the bleed to be meaningful. It just feels bad. With old BT you would always use whatever ability was the most damage for the situation at hand. So Rake/Shred for ST and then Thrashes/Swipes for big AoE. Well now you are forcing us to use an ability that is a DPS loss just to proc BT. Again this feels terrible compared to the old design. So just make it any 3 generators but reduce the window to maybe 3 seconds if needed to force pooling. But please, this current iteration of forcing ST/AoE ability usage in un-ideal situations is just bad gameplay and worse than the old BT. Not even mentioning how new BT is reducing our overall bleed damage by not allowing us to BT buff Rake anymore. It’s just bad in it’s current iteration.

Some talent ideas. Make Predator baseline and move Scent of Blood back to the 15 Row with it’s old iteration of increased Crit% on bleeding targets. Remove the Rip extension from Sabertooth. In Scent of Blood’s place on the AoE row add a talent that interact’s with Rake in some form. Maybe increase out bleed damage when multiple Rake’s active or make it where the Rake’s we apply are stealth buffed when Thrash or Rip is active on 2+ targets. Basically a talent whose ideal scenario is 2-3 target cleave. Also, buff BrS’s damage significantly but make it require 2+ targets. This would make it a true AoE row where no talent is a DPS increase in ST with options for cleave (Rake talent), short windows of burst AoE (BrS) or fights that have sustained AoE like M+ (PW).

Remove Savage Roar. Since it no longer snapshots like it used to it’s not nearly as engaging to play with. Maintenance buffs aren’t fun. It used to be fun because you could afford to let SR drop for a few seconds if you were able to snapshot Rake/Rip before SR fell off. That is no longer the case so just remove SR all together and replace it. I still like the idea of adding the Legion Artifact trait that gave your combo generators a chance to proc a 2nd Rip on the target that was based on the remaining duration of the rip on target. Make it a bleed instead of shadow damage so that it interacts with the FB conduit so that it’s competitive with SotF. Would also help our M+ viability by being able to proc cloned rip’s from PW/Swipe. To balance it can even make it where Shred/Rake have a higher chance to proc it than Thrash/Swipe.

Already talked about Bloodtalons at the beginning. God I hope it doesn’t go live with current iteration.

To make us more competitive with Boomie utility wise: make Heart of the Wild baseline and replace it with Typhoon. Then for balance affinity either put innervate or treants included in the talent. If Treants then make it an army of cats instead of trees. Makes no sense that Stampediing Roar was given to Boomie when they already had more utility than us from the get go. So at least give us something in return to make the utility balance more even.

Please, PLEASE move our damage output back into our Bleeds. FB being our highest % of damage is not fun. It also reduces our viablity in cleave fights which is something Feral used to excel at. Back in early Legion when Feral was at it’s best, Rip would make up 20-25% of our damage output ST, Rake would also make up 20-25% of our damage. This was a lot of fun. It gave Feral a strong niche where we were really strong in 2-3 target cleave fights when we were able to have multiple Rips/Rake’s rolling. Currently FB is 30-40% of our damage. Rip makes up a measly 10% of our damage on ST and Rake is even lower to the point that melee is sometimes more of our dmg output then Rake. And with BT no longer buffing Rake it will be even worse. Why did we ever get away from bleed dmg. Please move our dmg back into our bleeds. Pleaseeee.

Lastly I hate new Berserk. It definitely needed buffed but I think making the legendary effect that added short stackable bleeds that did % of the ability dmg during Berserk would have been way more flavorful and fun. And would interact with jagged wounds legendary/necro abilitiy or even the FB conduit that added bite dmg for every bleed.

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This new style is much preferred over the previous rotation. It now feels like I can plan much more in advance instead of riding an arbitrary wave. Capping resource and being forced to extend an undesirable eclipse was very clunky.

I have one major complaint. I’m not sure if its a bug or not, but casting Celestial Alignment will reset the eclipse damage stacks and set the duration to a fixed 20 seconds. Meaning if you just entered a solar eclipse (15s) cast a few star surges (~11s left) and then pop CA, the damage buff and duration of eclipse is reset. It feels really clunky.

I understand for tuning if extending the buff is not possible, but allowing to keep the damage buff and resetting the duration I think is a good compromise.

This adds further irritation with the arcanic pulsar legendary. While you are in control of when the pulsar procs, it resetting the eclipse and setting it to a fixed 5s duration is very frustrating and not intuitive.

Hoping to see this gets addressed. Great changes otherwise.

Edit: I had an additional thought after playing around more. It seems like due to the nature of wanting to pool resource and dump in solar eclipse (ie for ST fights), playing with Starlord means you have to manually cancel the aura right before the preferred eclipse to be optimal. This has been around for a while, but whether this is something you think is healthy or not is up for questioning.

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Please bring back Typhoon for guardian druids. It was such a great utility in BFA for M+.

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Any iteration is better than using heal to increase dps. And in single target fights you can proc current BT with brutal slash if you do not want to use thrash. And speaking about thrash, you’ll possibly will use it in st-rotation just because conduit that increase your FB damage per bleed applied.

No, thanks. Or at least not baseline (i.e. via legendary or talent). Being unable to focus priority target will only hurt.

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Still doesn’t play well imo after the changes. Still a very boring rotation where the dots still do no damage and your biggest hitter is starsurge. You spend most of a lunar eclipse prepping for solar eclipse to lose the first 5 seconds of it to spamming starsurge. The lack of a fluid rotation for single target or aoe is absolutely abysmal to say the least and the lack of anything gratifying happening during the rotation like a proc isn’t there (even with the legendary to gain CA every so much AP which can screw up the rotation you have going if you have just spent AP to gain dmg stacks only to have it reset on you).

You guys keep going back to this broken way of trying to do the spec. Why do you insist on this eclipse style rotation when it clearly hasn’t worked? You haven’t reinvented the wheel here with it’s new iteration and it feels worse that it did in the many previous expacs where you implemented it.

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Feels bad when there isn’t a single positive post about Guardian on here and the response from the devs is silence. Please listen to us.

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Mostly great changes here, appreciated. One note: The Solstice talent is currently weaker than fury of elune in almost all circumstances.

Explanation: Beta shooting stars is approx 7-8 ppm and solstice roughly doubles this on average (300% increase, 6 / 15 s during eclipse with brief downtime) for approximately 8 * 2 = 16 astral power per minute, and 8 * ~400 = 3200 dmg per minute. Fury of elune does roughly the same damage on single target, but produces 40 astral power per minute (40 - 16 = 24 more or almost another SS)

On multi targets, shooting stars has square root scaling for PPM. This means you would likely need at least 4 fully spread multidot targets for a 2x multiplier on solstice for it to catch up to FoE, and none of them could be within the FoE area. This is very rare in practice so there is no realistic circumstance where you would use solstice.

Suggestion: Solstice needs an approximately 25% buff to be numerically competitive. It can be a little lower than an active ability (passive tax). Solstice could be changed to read “Shooting Stars occurs 150% more often during eclipse” instead of 300% more during only the first 6 seconds, and this would be more balanced. It would be still a little lower in value than it’s talent competitors, but might be used just due to being simple.

Result: Solstice would increase shooting stars from approx 8 ppm to approx 20 ppm or slightly less. This is a difference of 12 * 2 = 24 astral power per minute, and 12 * ~400 = 4800 damage per minute. This would make it just slightly worse than Fury of Elune on single target or stacked multi target, but actually usable on 4+ target cleave as it takes no globals.

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