Is there meaningful choice?

Quoted from a recent interview with Ion:

“We know that looking at a specific talent row or two abilities, there will always be one right answer. So part of what we’ve tried to do with covenants as a whole is to make them a larger bucket, a collection of choices, with different pros and cons. So yes, even if in one situation, this one covenant or class isn’t optimal, they have their time to shine elsewhere…so overall that makes them an accepted part of the meta.”

…my question for everyone is this: Given they already know that there is always a RIGHT answer in a talent row or between two different abilities, do you guys think they’ve situationally differentiated covenants enough to create meaningful choice for players?

Drops mic


I think they locked themselves into it from day 1 and have been panic working ever sense.

I don’t hate the concept but with a community that gets mad about 2 week events i can imagine blizzard creators are sweating bullets

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Na, to make choices “meaningful” they’ll nerf the best of the group instead of bringing the rest up to par.

Not really. There is good choices, bad choices and worse choices. “Choice” is more of an illusion if you want to min/max your damage output.

No, Ion cannot break metas existing.


Also just to add, ESPECIALLY no now they’ve nerfed every covenant to the ground. I cannot wait for the masses to play with what we are ending up getting.

Watching all the covenants go to a mushy grey paste while on my time in beta has been depressing, all because they’d rather do this than make them easily changeable.


Choices are either meaningless, like your favorite color, or meaningful. You can’t really have a bunch of equally powerful, meaningful choices.

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They make you choose between Pepsi and Coke… animals.

Choice used to exist when information was less available and players had to ask or thottbot it for an attempt at research and who knows if they were getting good answers.

Also helped that there was more choice in the old days compared to today. You could play DW arms or fast 2H arms or sword/board fury with very few limitations on abilities via incorrect weapon choice and then with talent trees having bad, mediocre, or situational talents players could custom build.

Nowadays we punch into Google for answers or look up wowhead/discord/icyveins and get concrete answers, and then again coupled with less choices and customization choice feels less and less available.


There is no such thing as choice when things are based on math.


Really? I remember heading to Ironforge for an inspection before a group would start

I think this needs to be repeated over and over again.

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No there isnt, covenant choices got nerfed to be almost the same in power.

Yes. I will choose the covenant I like the most and a guild that doesn’t give a damn about min-maxing, if not I have the choice to make my own guild.

While my guild will be busy having fun throwing our bodies against the carnage that will be mythic raiding, the min-maxers will be busy opening their spreadsheets for the Nth time that day because Blizzard again nerfed covenants.


Yeah - we all know they should have pulled the ripcord but they were too stubborn to do so because it would have been admitting that the players were right. They chose the grey paste instead.

I think he answered it pretty well, with the resources online and simming there will always be the “best” choice for the piece of content you are trying to accomplish.

I think the first “choice” you have to make is do you want to be on the cutting edge of content or not, then after you make that choice, you can start making other choices like talent specs and covenants. I think Blizzard has done an overall good job of keeping a variety of different specs/classes/covenants viable.

That said, if you want to be on the cutting edge in regard to mythic raiding or pushing high keys, then yeah, you may feel you don’t have much choice, just remember you made the choice to be on that cutting edge.


Depends on what you mean by old days.

Before armory (and even in early stages) inspection on characters was pretty difficult, you couldn’t even know their spec unless you knew to look for certain buffs or abilities. And I played classic for a good while and I never inspected anyone outside of making sure they were proper level.

Ultimately though what you’re describing is a review process, presumably for pugs, and I remember that happening even as early as TBC for some content. My point was that with so much choice in the game and not always readily available information like we have today players were fending for themselves more than we do today so choice probably felt relatively available to us back then.

Go Google some vanilla/TBC/WOTLK talent trees and try to create the “correct” spec off the cuff. You can’t do it without having some knowledge and that knowledge was not always easily accessible, especially not available in one place like it is today. That and some specs had a little extra fluff that allowed them to do some minor customization (albeit that was not always true). I couldn’t necessarily create a proper build in today’s world either but I literally have a 1 in 3 chance of being right for each tier, not to mention each tier is now designed to be beneficial even if they do end up missing the balancing mark plus, plus some of them are not actually impactful to performance.

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No. Its why they have pinned the blame of poor game designe on min maxers

I think people have stopped caring and hopped off the band wagon ages ago.

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There is always a choice. Whether it has meaning or not is for you to decide,