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#21 Rfeann

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 03:09 PM

Was it ever realistic for us to expect a mid-expansion patch that *would* fundamentally change how we play? At best, what were we looking for? A return to favorability in PvP (via some mix of greater mobility, utility or defense), which certainly appears to be on its way. And PvE alterations that would make the class more fun to play without damaging our standing in a raiding context, which... Probably wasn't even a remotely realistic request in the first place.

This feels bad from a raiding standpoint right now because, speaking purely from a DPS rankings perspective, there are very few places for us to go but down. We are -- and even with the BF nerf, we remain -- extremely healthy as a DPS class in a raiding context. And isn't that what matters most to a raider? How many folks have quit raiding this tier because, sure, they were pulling great numbers, but they just didn't enjoy how the class "felt" to play?

These changes are most likely to impact us in PvP, in leveling, in dungeons and in completing dailies -- all of the areas where we really start to look not-so-great in terms of fun and performance compared to other classes. In the bargain, we may lose the defining strength of the Combat spec -- which sucks from one point of view, but from another may represent the collapse of the final massive barrier that lies between our class and something resembling true spec balance.

I'm probably exaggerating that possibility and being way too hopeful about its potential. But I feel a sense of opportunity here, in terms of class design, that I hadn't in the context of our soon-to-be-old Blade Flurry.

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#22 metzli

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 05:02 PM

Maybe none of you played it, but most of these changes sound exactly like guild wars 2's roguelike class, which is really fun by the way....also basically immune to CC. I'd bet some dev saw how fun rogue in GW2 was and said "How can we change wow rogue to be this kind of fun without breaking the game too much".

Also I fully expect to see most of these new changes nerfed. But I think some of the changes were to make pvp rogues less dependant on Shadowstep to open on classes with OP aoe's to break us. As well as making ambush easier to land for PVE purposes.

I expect the actual intent with the Blade flurry nerf was to figure out what the right numbers were to balance us on some new fights in the next tier. We already saw with garalon that special measures had to be taken to make us not OP on 2 target cleave fights, especially with damage buffs. And Ghostcrawler said at some point that being a little OP is ok, but being mandatory is not. So that's my perspective on that.

Short of some new raid mechanics (which haven't really been in the game since maybe BC) I doubt that even with the changes Burst of speed will ever be better than shadowstep. Spending energy and getting a 4 second sprint is just so much weaker than shadowstep. And the liklihood of any fight where you need a "get back to the target" buff more often than every 24 seconds is almost nonexistant.

Marked for death could potientially be useful for combat but, at least for me, not having anticipation (taking marked for death) would probably be a huge dps loss as assassination. Gear is already at the point where we have enough crit and haste that we can routinely go over 5 CP's even without shadow blades. I'm sure this only becomes more true as we enter the next tier. I'd only take this if we were swapping targets so often that anticipation was not that useful, in which case you'd probably want to play combat anyway.
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#23 Seliathan

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 07:28 PM

In my opinion Anticipation will still be the best choice for the current rogue gameplay since it enables us to improve on our resource management, which has always been and hopefully will be a huge factor in increasing our DPS. Yet I am still concerned that we kind of HAVE to choose a talent like Anticipation, especially now that the other choices aren't horrible either. Not taking Anticipation is a DPS loss because we are more likely to lose out on one or even both of our primary resources - something no other class has to cope with as far as I know and this still bugs me (especially when Paladins, who only got a combo-point like mechanic for a single addon now, got the functionality for free with MoP). Having valuable other choices in this talent tier now makes it even worse. There will or might be fights where taking Shuriken Toss or Marked for Death will provide more DPS than Anticipation does, but I honestly don't believe that anyone would like to bring a rogue to these types of encounters anyway, since they would have to favor low ramp-up times and/or parts where you cannot meleehit at all.

As far as the BF nerf goes, I am glad to see that we are finally going to move away from that "Cleave? -> Combat, AoE? -> Assassination" mentality the two specs have been in for way too long. Bladeflurry was too strong (or was it?) but other classes have nearly identical if not stronger possibilities to efficiently deal major damage to two targets and none of them were touched yet. Maybe and hopefully Blizzard wants to show the direction they want to go with combat, but combat in and by itself has now lost its identity which is something I am hugely uncomfortable with. Every other spec in this game has this one defining mechanic, and while Assassination has poisons and Subtlety has finishers/HaT working for them, Combat is just basic rogue-mechanics, with 30% AP and several percentage based DPS-increasements here and there. With Bladeflurry being almost no DPS-Gain whatsoever anymore there has to be something else to make up for it (and I hope it will be something else than that 5% increased Attack Power).

On an unrelated non-ranty note, is Marked for Death going to work with Restless Blades?

#24 Verain

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 09:19 PM

Assorted thoughts:
1) Multidotting as Assassination is probably better than straight single-target DPS, but not necessarily by very much. It might beat the 8% number we're projecting for Combat, but its not going to beat it by very much.


I think it's VERY important to point out that all damage is not created equal. While everyone's mind is on Stone Dogs and Garalon because they are current tier, only Stone Dogs out of the whole tier actually is a fight where you would give up 100 points of damage on your primary target to deal even 101 points of damage on your secondary target. In the cases of add fights, you would, if you could magically distribute the damage perfectly, actually opt to kill each add in order- all the raid dps goes to add #1, then #2, etc. Mass AoE and cleave are effective because they offer the raid something better than single target, but they don't change the logistics- it's almost always better to have one dead add than two living adds, because the one dead add doesn't do any more damage, CC, or healing. AoE, and cleave in particular, has to actually be worth enough to overcome this hump.

Garalon has a special mechanic- the leg itself (and only the leg) takes double damage. So you put people on the leg whose secondary damage doesn't suffer too much, because you really want to kill the boss. On live, this is a combat rogue- his secondary damage is very strong, so it's worth him doing that, and then the other characters, who don't have that trick, focus the boss. You only bring them over if the leg is not dying fast enough. This means that post nerf, a rogue would very likely not want to even switch to the leg, as this would be lower raid damage than if a warrior does that job.

Most cleave fights are "organic" or "free form"- there are several adds, in varying states of control, moving about. Some are close, and are good for cleaves. Others are just all over the place and are good for multidots. Normally these fights work best when the raid dps is high enough to eliminate them efficiently, but some members of the raid opt to deal single target damage, or eliminate high priority targets. Rogues will lose any reason to not be in the last group with this change, because our cleave is already a small cone that enemies quickly dance in and out of. Add some fire on the floor and you'll not be able to stand in the right spot often enough to risk blade flurry, except for tricks like "blade flurry on, 5 point eviscerate, sinister a bit, blade flurry off to refill energy pool", which is a lot of micromanaging for a small amount of payback.

Note also that this "toggle dancing", balancing of your energy pool, your blade flurry cooldown, and your current set of combo points, will be a high skill trick with very little payout. Right now, it's beneficial to keep flurry up full time, because the forked white attacks and mastery make up for the energy penalty, even at 5 energy with black-1 BG status. In the future, you'll want to disable blade flurry for that time period, as the anemic white attacks being forked at 25% strength won't be enough to make up for the energy starvation. I don't believe this trick will be fun, and am not looking forward to trying to optimize for it.


2) While its true that crippling Blade Flurry robs Combat of a lot of its identity, I think the fact that Combat's identity is so tightly coupled to its cleave says something about how lacking the spec is otherwise. In an ideal world I'd like to see more work done on giving combat a distinct and interesting playstyle beyond just being "the one that has Blade Flurry".


You touched on this in an earlier post- rogues don't have much spec distinction, and Ghostcrawler told us that we would be disappointed if we wanted that. Why we don't have the same philosophy as the warlocks I have no idea, but I guess it is different. I'm sure everyone by now has noticed that assassination has balls for burst, but has a strong amount of sustained, and that sub has more burst with a low cooldown, and combat has strong burst over a decently sized window- but combat's real trick is blade flurry, and if the nerf goes live at this magnitude, it's fair to say that it is gone.

So, why don't we have a spec that bursts harder than a ret? Or a spec that executes better than a warrior? Or a spec that can glean extra damage from a raid damage fight like a warrior can? Or the ability to spew out healing like several talents provide hybrids? I was under the impression that "strong single target long term sustained" was a pretty ok niche, as was "really good flurry with one spec". But everyone wants that first thing, and in general they don't think that being able to burst three times as hard as the other classes should result in lower overall damage, even though that is massive utility. The second thing made waves because in a 16 boss tier, two of the fights make heavy use of it, and it's pretty ok on other fights.


What is combat about? When do you run it? I recall for years, combat's cooldowns gave it a shocking amount of damage, and any fight that had periods of off-phase was pretty much going to be great for combat. Mimiron resting between phases pretty much gave you a lot more burst than other classes and specs. But the current wave of modern cooldowns not only are more powerful than anything rogues have, but they can be stacked in multiplicative ways- for instance, a druid can turn on a period of percent extra damage (similar to vendetta), and stack that with an incarnation cooldown that either changes their rotation or rewards some aspect of it intensely. These are from TALENTS, mind you, so they can choose sustained damage talents instead. We have to choose that with entire specs.

We also SHOULD have UI support for bandit's guile. I should not need bandit's guile helper to see that I'm at yellow 3 and should pool a bit. Anticipation should be on the UI as another row of combo points, not swimming in the buff ocean begging you to make a power aura for it. We should have a bigger reward for being in red, or putting cooldowns there, or have a cooldown that transitions us around that we can use differently for a sustained fight than a burst fight.

On the bright side, killing spree rules, and adrenaline rush is a very pleasing cooldown, and shadow blades works excellently with combat. I do enjoy the combat spec, and I like optimizing stuff on it.


3) I'd also dispute the notion that Blade Flurry is "overpowered" in its current form. I mean, its very good, certainly, but functionally speaking there are a number of other classes that do nearly as well, and if I recall Blizzard specifically said something along the lines of "we want combat rogues to be excited about cleave fights as its something they're good at" (note that with the BF nerf this statement is no longer even remotely true).



Amen. Blade Flurry is more raid utility than anything else. Rogues being very powerful on a few fights this tier makes up for our shocking lack of raid utility, damage reduction, healing, damage redirection, and mandatory position in melee. Since melee is a contested and desired position and any rogue you get automatically is a melee dps, you already are dealing with a situation where you bought a sports car and your wife is angry about it.

Blade Flurry is not overpowered. I wouldn't be surprised if they nerf it, but at 25% of current damage... it's bad.


Anyway, I'll stop QQing about this now, because your last point is up and I've written a mile of tears already.

4) Having thought about the changes a bit more: I applaud the effort to improve rogues, but the more I look at them the more I think they're not going to really change anything.


These things are game changing in pvp. The position of rogues in pvp is garbage heap at the moment- we are in competition with monks for worstest baddie, and no one has been playing a monk for 8 years. In PvP at the moment, you normally want Shuriken Toss, but you can pack a bit more damage into a burst cycle with anticipation. With Marked for Death, I believe you will have that as a viable choice next to shuriken toss if you like the burst setup, because you'll be able to get your second five point finisher- but this time without having to pool CPs and anticipation charges. You won't have to earn them. Meanwhile, ST, if it actually does what it says, will greatly reduce the currently massive reward for peeling a rogue- if we can continue to full strength autoattacks from both weapons as shuriken, our status as a white-attack focused class will stop working against us. Every trivial short term escape cooldown will not be nearly as devastating as it is now with the ability to go ninja-berserk at hunters and mages who have "hoppity-hop" on a sub 20 second timer.

Now, if it isn't full strength autoattacks, then suddenly pressing it becomes this crazy choice- like you would lose damage if you manage to get back on target, but you otherwise deal sub white hits to them, or whatever- then the move would lose its pve utility entirely, and in some cases be worse in pvp than live. The wording isn't super clear yet, so we'll see. If it's what it sounds like, I'm very excited about it.

Cloak and Dagger needs some clarifications. Does it break roots? If so, they will have recreated avatar- shadowdance will become Teleportation Spree, and sub will become even more mandatory in pvp because of this. I honestly liked the sound of Hit and Run much more than this- while this sounds very powerful, it does two things that I don't like- creates an unpeelable damage machine during the cooldown, and leaves you kited around the rest of the time.


Baseline prep is, I believe, the single greatest change to pvp. I think this season has shown that we've always been balanced around having prep, and the few times that prepless specs have succeeded it has been either unintended (and immediately nerfed) synergy with items or other classes, such as the Renataki Twins, or asking "do you want your right arm, or your right hand?" like the current talent tier- where you still end up taking prep versus a good number of matches, and when you don't have it, the strategy is normally "sit the rogue". Our rankings show that this is fully effective, and requires no more thought than this. I personally have no regard for opinions such as "they'll balance us without it" or "cooldowns that reset cooldowns are lame". Rogues have had poorly repped seasons, seasons where they could and did give us buffs to fix us. But at no point have these buffs EVER been aimed at fixing the non prep specs. When muti-prep got destroyed going into cata, what compensation was offered to mutilate? Did cata's combat rogue bring anything worth speccing for? It even lost undodgeable kidney! This is easily my favorite move, and one that defines the WoW rogue versus all the other games rogue-copies.




...but pve...

Your summary is correct. Marked for Death offers us an interesting multi target spec, and a small amount of extra burst at the cost of sustained. It is not of the magnitude of other dps specs/classes, but it is a start. Nothing will dethrone shadowstep in pve, but that is honestly because shadowstep is really damned good at its job. Shadowstep takes you directly to the butt of the target you want. Pretty much the only time you'd think it isn't good enough is if you have to switch to a target, then switch back, very quickly (adds on Elegon, for instance). "Hit and Run" would have offered this, but even then... would you really have taken it much? I think shadowstep is just too great in pve. Other classes with mobility choices end up making the same choice in pve. Warriors pick the double charges, druids take wild charge.



Sorry for the pvp aside, but I think it's fair to say that most of our changes are for pvp, as that is where we need the most changes.

#25 Aldriana

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 10:11 PM

I think it's VERY important to point out that all damage is not created equal. While everyone's mind is on Stone Dogs and Garalon because they are current tier, only Stone Dogs out of the whole tier actually is a fight where you would give up 100 points of damage on your primary target to deal even 101 points of damage on your secondary target. In the cases of add fights, you would, if you could magically distribute the damage perfectly, actually opt to kill each add in order- all the raid dps goes to add #1, then #2, etc. Mass AoE and cleave are effective because they offer the raid something better than single target, but they don't change the logistics- it's almost always better to have one dead add than two living adds, because the one dead add doesn't do any more damage, CC, or healing. AoE, and cleave in particular, has to actually be worth enough to overcome this hump.

Garalon has a special mechanic- the leg itself (and only the leg) takes double damage. So you put people on the leg whose secondary damage doesn't suffer too much, because you really want to kill the boss. On live, this is a combat rogue- his secondary damage is very strong, so it's worth him doing that, and then the other characters, who don't have that trick, focus the boss. You only bring them over if the leg is not dying fast enough. This means that post nerf, a rogue would very likely not want to even switch to the leg, as this would be lower raid damage than if a warrior does that job.


While I agree with the general principal (up to a point, anyway), I think you're underestimating how often DPS on a second target can be just as useful as DPS on a primary target. The obvious case you're missing is things like Empress phase 2, where you need to keep the adds up to get stick resins so can't just burn them down one at a time. In practice, damage to any add is equally good, as ultimately you need to burn through all their HP but you don't want too many of them to die too quickly. Some Wind Lord strats exhibit similar behavior, where the goal is to do a certain amount of damage spread between a number of targets before you kill any of it.

With regards to Garalon in particular: perhaps your guild does it differently, but in mine, we generally wind up with all melee switching to every leg; if we only had fury warriors switching the legs would take too long to die. That said, because of the 200% buff (and the fact that it doesn't transfer to the boss via Blade Flurry anymore), it would no longer be worthwhile to turn BF on while DPSing the legs (normal: 100%. Normal BF: 90 + 18 = 108%. Buffed: 100 x 2 = 200%. BF Buffed: 90 * 2 + 18 = 198%). So the ultimate conclusion remains the same (Combat doesn't BF the legs on Garalon), but the logic for getting there is a little different.

More generally: while its true that you won't often want to give up 100 points of single target damage for 101 points of add damage, that's not what you're doing with Blade Flurry. You're giving up 100 points of single target damage for 180 points of add damage (1000 + 0 -> 900 + 180), which is significantly more likely to be worth it. Your critique is, however, valid for why Assassination multi-DoTing is functionally somewhat less useful.

#26 Verain

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Posted 23 December 2012 - 11:43 PM

The obvious case you're missing is things like Empress phase 2, where you need to keep the adds up to get stick resins so can't just burn them down one at a time.


Well, in that specific case there's often a benefit to dragging them apart. We only do that fight reg thus far, and I'm normally mutilate on it, but if I shiv cripple an add so he's not able to reach the tank so easily, he can easily fall out of a flurry cone. Same as if someone stuns or yanks. But yea, spread is about the same as otherwise. But there's plenty of time where that is not the case- for instance, pretend that the adds don't occasionally throw out a mechanic that is needed to win (amber whatever). Most adds need to be killed, not spared until they have done their job, and killing them fast is normally correct.


That said, because of the 200% buff (and the fact that it doesn't transfer to the boss via Blade Flurry anymore), it would no longer be worthwhile to turn BF on while DPSing the legs (normal: 100%. Normal BF: 90 + 18 = 108%. Buffed: 100 x 2 = 200%. BF Buffed: 90 * 2 + 18 = 198%).


I'm going to take exception with the philosophy behind your math. Pretend that the legs had one quarter their current life, and a buff that made them take one quarter damage at all times. Then, if you stand in the circle, the buff changes to only reduce damage by one half. This would be the exact same fight as today, but your math would predict a different strategy- even though the strategy SHOULD remain the same. If Blizzard had gone this way (instead of inflating damage done to legs, deflating it), the meters would look totally different. You'd still need to kill the legs, of course, and it would still be in your best interest to only have cleave guys on it if that's enough, and then ramp up from there until the legs die, just as it is on live.



You're giving up 100 points of single target damage for 180 points of add damage (1000 + 0 -> 900 + 180), which is significantly more likely to be worth it.


Well, yes, but...
Would you do it on healy dragon in ICC? Would you run it for Halfus? Zon'ozz? Rhyolith (assuming your Rhyo strategy allowed blade flurry)? In all those cases, the actually assigned target has a higher priority than anything you would be cleaving into, so the cleave has to not be crap to be worth it. 25% blade flurry is crap. You might do a bit higher dps with it, but it would be functionally incorrect from an execution standpoint. If the cleave matters you bring a warrior. If the main target needs to die, you don't press the pad-the-meter button, and you are also whatever the single target spec is, which may not even be combat.

#27 metzli

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 12:24 AM

I think you're missing the point. Aldriana was saying that some of the fights you were pointing out as examples, your math and logic were incorrect on. He was not disagreeing with you that blade flurry has been a meter-padding button in the past (though in this exact tier that is not the case), and will continue to be so in the future assuming this nerf wasn't intended to be so extreme.
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#28 Aldriana

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 02:37 AM

Well, in that specific case there's often a benefit to dragging them apart. We only do that fight reg thus far, and I'm normally mutilate on it, but if I shiv cripple an add so he's not able to reach the tank so easily, he can easily fall out of a flurry cone. Same as if someone stuns or yanks. But yea, spread is about the same as otherwise. But there's plenty of time where that is not the case- for instance, pretend that the adds don't occasionally throw out a mechanic that is needed to win (amber whatever). Most adds need to be killed, not spared until they have done their job, and killing them fast is normally correct.

I'm going to take exception with the philosophy behind your math. Pretend that the legs had one quarter their current life, and a buff that made them take one quarter damage at all times. Then, if you stand in the circle, the buff changes to only reduce damage by one half. This would be the exact same fight as today, but your math would predict a different strategy- even though the strategy SHOULD remain the same. If Blizzard had gone this way (instead of inflating damage done to legs, deflating it), the meters would look totally different. You'd still need to kill the legs, of course, and it would still be in your best interest to only have cleave guys on it if that's enough, and then ramp up from there until the legs die, just as it is on live.

Well, yes, but...
Would you do it on healy dragon in ICC? Would you run it for Halfus? Zon'ozz? Rhyolith (assuming your Rhyo strategy allowed blade flurry)? In all those cases, the actually assigned target has a higher priority than anything you would be cleaving into, so the cleave has to not be crap to be worth it. 25% blade flurry is crap. You might do a bit higher dps with it, but it would be functionally incorrect from an execution standpoint. If the cleave matters you bring a warrior. If the main target needs to die, you don't press the pad-the-meter button, and you are also whatever the single target spec is, which may not even be combat.


I don't really want to get into a fight about relative DPS priority on every single cleave fight since Tier 1. Suffice it to say that there are some fights where there's a clear primary DPS target, and cleaving is mostly (or entirely) meter-padding; but there are also a lot where it isn't - its not "everything but Stone Dogs" as you've asserted.

So, without going into great gory detail: while I was slightly wrong about the mechanics on Empress, I maintain cleave is still almost universally worth it. Most of the other fights you mention, it depends rather a lot of your specific guild's strategy; their are strats where it makes sense, and strats where it doesn't. Historically it almost always did make sense on account of the way Blade Flurry worked with damage multipliers, but with that changed it is, admittedly, far more ambiguous.

And with regards to your Garalon thought experiment: does killing a leg still do 3% boss HP? If it does, then the amount of effective boss damage done by attacking a leg is the same as at current, meaning the strategy is as well. If it only does 1/4 as much (based on its lower HP), then you don't switch to the legs at all, as they're no longer damage-efficient to kill. Either way, my analysis above applies.

#29 Verain

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:31 AM

I'm not trying to be pedantic, or pick out some tiny error. I called stone dogs the exception because it's actually two bosses right next to each other, and so absolutely no one would doubt that flurry is proper, even a very weak flurry. Whereas I have fellow raiders question the use of multi dots and cleaves on many fights, because of a perceived gain in execution if a single target strat is followed. That's not the same as meter padding, but I think there's a spectrum from "yes for sure press the button" to "pressing the button hurts the raid execution", and I don't want to have to think about that every time. Maybe that's fun for some players, or even how the devs want it designed, but I find it creates social pressure. At 25% I'm not sure where we are on there, and the 8% gain you calculated seems like it will cause more player confusion than it will solve a cleave-balance problem.

The example with the Garalon leg was because: on live, damage to the leg is doubled. This means that the meters lie. If you deal 100,000 to the leg and 100,000 to the boss, the meter says you did 300,000. If you deal 200,000 to the boss, the meter says you dealt 200,000. That's a broken meter! The meter tells you how much damage the boss took, not how much you actually dealt :P

If the meters weren't broken, aka, if the legs took normal damage inside the ring and half damage outside it, I think player perception of this fight would be vastly different, hence the half damage thought experiment. The legs have to die, and you want the guy on the leg that can cleave the best. If he can't solo the leg, then you add more, working down the line of "who loses the least boss damage to get on the leg" until the legs die quickly. If your guild is going to beat the enrage timer anyway, then you don't need to figure this out- you just blow the legs up with whatever and don't sweat the theoretical inefficiency, and you down the boss and everyone has fun.

My concern is that a super weak flurry will often be a trap- a tiny increase in dps that may or may not be relevant on a lot of fights in the future, possibly combined with odd unfun toggling because it will probably be beneficial to turn off flurry while pooling in low insight. I'm concerned that our playstyle will turn from "here comes the blender bitches!" into this ultra-dorky perfection fest for a trivial increase in damage that may not have any benefits from the point of executing the fights.

I am very opposed to this nerf. I think it will take away a lot of motivation to bring us at all, cause strat confusion, and hurt our rotation.




EDIT: And with the Garalon thing, I would assume that it would be the same damage dealt to the boss. Your math shows that a rogue deals 100x2 = 200% to the leg, or 90*2+18=198% cleaving. Under the "half damage" assumption, you would get 100x0.5=50% to the leg, or 90*0.5+18=63% cleaving. On live, you deal more damage single target, in my assumed world you deal more damage cleaving- but the fight didn't change one whit, and nor should the strategy. In both cases, if you switch to the leg, you should probably cleave to the boss, unless the leg doesn't die fast enough with you doing that.... right?

#30 metzli

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 04:26 AM

The example with the Garalon leg was because: on live, damage to the leg is doubled. This means that the meters lie. If you deal 100,000 to the leg and 100,000 to the boss, the meter says you did 300,000. If you deal 200,000 to the boss, the meter says you dealt 200,000. That's a broken meter! The meter tells you how much damage the boss took, not how much you actually dealt :P


Regardless of whatever other logical fallacies you may be spewing all over the thread...I have no idea where you learned to math, but please try again. If you do 200000 to the leg because you get a double damage buff, and then the leg dies, you have done 200000 to the boss + your cleave damage. At least in my world, 300k to the boss is quite a bit more than 100k (granted those numbers are not quite accurate, and have nothing to do with the BF nerf). I don't know why you think that taking advantage of a fight mechanic is a broken meter.....but ok. Let's run with that and rogues are never allowed to take advantage of any fight mechanics for dps purposes ever again. Good luck killing heroic wind lord, or lei shi, or protectors, or amber shaper, or....I think you get the point.
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#31 Verain

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 04:50 AM

I have no idea where you learned to math, but please try again.


Reread, but I'll try to explain.

If you do 200000 to the leg because you get a double damage buff, and then the leg dies, you have done 200000 to the boss + your cleave damage.


No no, that damage is a lie! Say the leg has 30 trillion times as much health. If you deal 100,000 damage and the leg multiplies it by 30 trillion, but the dead leg is still the same (3% iirc?) to the boss, then the meter skew would be much more obvious. You'd be like, holy crap, this meter is getting in the way of seeing how much damage is really being done! The point is that the leg has to die, and that the multiplier confuses things.

At least in my world, 300k to the boss is quite a bit more than 100k


The question isn't "should the leg get hit". The question is "how does that happen". And then that becomes "who loses the least boss (aka, real) damage by hitting the leg". That answer is normally "the guy who can blade flurry, or cleave, or whatever else", because some of his damage goes back to the boss. If no one in the entire raid had a cleave at all (like, it wasn't even in the game as a thing), then this wouldn't be a question.

And that's why it's relevant to the blade flurry nerf. What the multiplier is doesn't matter- Blizzard planned the backlash to the boss around the legs dying. The damage taken is not the damage dealt. The map is not the territory!


I don't know why you think that taking advantage of a fight mechanic is a broken meter.....but ok.


You aren't using the fight mechanic, the fight mechanic is using you! The meter is broken because there's a damage inflation mechanic! The leg has to die either way, whether it records your damage properly, skewed by a factor of 2 for some reason, or skewed by 1/10th, you would still execute the fight the same way.



Let's run with that and rogues are never allowed to take advantage of any fight mechanics for dps purposes ever again. Good luck killing heroic wind lord, or lei shi, or protectors, or amber shaper, or....I think you get the point.


I think you might be missing mine. The point is that you're trying to optimize raid damage to kill the boss, right? I mean, if your guild doesn't need that, then fine, but that's not really my point. Many guilds do have to worry about that, and certainly mine whenever we hit a boss where an enrage time is tight. If garalon's leg says "I take 1/4 damage" and being close meant "I take 1/2 damage", you'd still EXECUTE the fight the same way. Combat would be as valuable as it is on live, but it would be behind a lot of other specs on the meters. Because execution and boss death is what matters. Multiplying dps to the leg by 2 (or 1/2 in my example) is why the meter is broken. On live, you put combat rogues on legs, you do what is best for the raid. A healthy blade flurry normally means that what is best for the raid is what puts numbers on the meters. When Blizzard does crazy stuff like Rhyolith or Garalon, it causes a lot of confusion because they are screwing with the thing we need for feedback and analysis. You even saw Aldrianna even use the multiplier, and he above everyone knows that effective dps is what matters. That's how insidious it is when our numbers are messed with!

Hell, you even think I'm coming at this from some anti-rogue perspective. I want rogues to rule man!

#32 Aldriana

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 05:12 AM

My math on Garalon is assessing net damage to the boss. At current, this coincides precisely with damage done, as damage done to the legs converts 1:1 to damage on the boss when the leg dies. If you perform your scaling thought experiment on the legs, it no longer will; the quantity you'll be trying to optimize is 4*leg damage + boss damage, as damage done to the legs (which is otherwise irrelevant) is multiplied 4x when applied to the boss - thus arriving at the exact same function for damage optimization that we have at current.

Basically: right now, optimizing total damage done and optimizing boss damage done are equivalent, provided you don't DPS any leg that doesn't eventually die. Obviously you can make that not the case by changing the mechanics of the fight. But that's true of basically every fight ever invented, anywhere, ever, so its not the most useful observation I've ever seen.

More generally: yes, there will be circumstances where BF underperforms its average performance, or where the secondary damage will be less useful. However, you can also construct situations where its more useful. If, for instance, you have a burst-cleave scenario, where you can pool up a full bar of energy, turn BF on, dump the entire bar, and turn it back off... well, now the energy regen penalty is hurting you a disproportionately small amount relative to the amount of damage you're copying over, and you'll overperform the 8% estimate.

So: sometimes it'll be better. Sometimes it'll be worse. But as an average-case estimate, I think 8% is pretty good. So there are definitely times where it will be worth using, if perhaps fewer than is currently the case. None of which changes the my overall opinion that it seems like an overnerf, and I hope they scale it back and/or give us some reasonable alternative to use instead.

#33 Verain

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 05:25 AM

My assumption is that the leg will eventually die, and that in general you want to lose as little boss damage as possible while killing it.

On the more interesting note of it overperforming the average case, I brought this up- on live, you want to keep blade flurry up full time when you can. It's my conjecture that during low damage cases, you won't want it up, as the payoff will be lower- the 1/4 forked white damage might not make up for the lost energy. So, for instance, once red ends, assume you switch it off, and then turn it on around yellow- would that reasonably simple trick result in a general damage increase? Or would it require further tweaking to beat the "leave it on" case?

#34 Aldriana

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 06:29 AM

That's a somewhat confusing way to think about killings legs. The point of killing them *is* boss damage - assuming the leg dies, damage to the leg is totally equivalent to damage to the boss - as in, the amount of damage it takes to kill a leg is exactly equivalent to the amount of damage the boss takes from a leg dying. Hence, the entire point of DPSing the legs is to maximize total damage done to all available targets - be that through multiDoTing, cleaving, or simply melee standing near them and thus doing double damage. If there were an arbitrarily large number of legs available to be killed, optimal strategy would be entirely equivalent to maximizing DPS. The only reason its not is because legs are a finite resource - they only respawn so fast, so you want to prioritize killing them with those attacks that gain the largest damage multiplier by so doing. So in that sense, yes, you want to take as little damage off the boss as possible in order to kill them. However, in practice, this generally involves melee full time on legs, so (subject to minor constraints on which legs you can/should kill) we can simply optimize total damage done - certainly in terms of deciding whether to Blade Flurry or not.

In terms of Blade Flurry toggle-optimization: you can probably increase damage *efficiency* through such techniques, but you're not going to increase total damage done. As such... it sort of depends on what you're trying to maximize, now doesn't it.

#35 bromli

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 11:13 AM

The only reason its not is because legs are a finite resource.


This is the dominating factor. What 5.2 would mean for combat on Garalon is that you would prefer to leave rogues on the boss full time, as per Aldriana's math. The only reason you wouldn't do that is because it takes a full melee team to kill the legs in a timely fashion. Given that this is the case, the proper way to attack the legs would be to single target them. Flurry could be used to throw a bit of dps at the boss if you are killing the legs just barely too quickly, but this makes no sense. You would be better off simply pulling off the leg a bit early and throwing a 5cp rupture on the boss before moving to the next leg.

I'm not sure if I understand what the argument about Garalon is even about, honestly. Everyone seems to realize/agree on the basic facts. 1) Total damage = boss damage. 2) Combat rogues on live are very strong at cleaving off the legs. 3) You put your best cleavers on the legs to maximize efficeincy, as killing legs faster is irrelevant as long as they die fast enough. 4) Combat rogues on PTR would not choose to cleave at all.

The theoretical half damage vs. double damage "thought experiment" is extremely uninteresting. As Aldraina said earlier, either (a) killing a leg still does 3% boss health, in which case 50k damage to a leg is 200k damage to the boss, which means nothing changes at all, or (B) killing a leg transfer's the leg's health as damage to the boss, in which case 50k damage to the leg would have been 100k damage to the boss if you simply attacked the boss instead, and you would want to kill as few legs as possible. You would still put your best cleavers on the legs; you would simply leave 1-3 legs alive the whole time, depending on your needs. Nothing would change. As far as I can tell this is simply a critique of linking dps meters on gimmick fights.

The interesting argument is about whether doing 10% less damage to your primary target is worth doing 18% of your damage to a secondary target. This decision depends on many factors, and I don't see how it can ever be completely separated from talking about specific encounters. I agree with Aldriana's assertion that more dps is generally better. If the main target is a very high priority, you simply don't flurry. In fact, the nerf makes this decision easier, as you aren't losing out on 60k dps to accomplish the immediate goal.

Where things get really interesting is when you consider dual spec. If you spend half the fight flurrying, and combat/assassination do equal single target damage, combat will do 104% of assassination's single target damage. However, assassination will be gaining a few percent by running a second rupture, pulling close to even. Add to this the fact that different gearing is worth a few percent, and it's likely that assassination-geared rogues would do more damage in assassination than in combat. Only on fights where flurry uptime is extremely high would it be worthwhile to spec combat. Only 2 fights like that exist in t14, and on Garalon in 5.2 assassination should be better than combat due to other mechanics. (I would either be rupturing the boss and killing legs, or rupturing legs and killing boss.)

Perhaps not everyone thinks as I do, that an important strong point of pure dps classes is the ability to raid with 2 specs and increase their damage compared to, say, a ret paladin, based on versatility. Even assuming that we are intended to play 1 spec, though, AoE situations will likely be important in any tier. If combat and assassination do equal single target damage, and roughly equal cleave, and there exist any important AoE situations, then playing assassination will be preferred.

I've long said that BF needed a nerf, even a big one. 75% is too far, though. I'd be fine with 50-60%, or perhaps the full 75% and reducing/removing the energy penalty. The current state of 5.2 is pretty simple to summarize. Assassination brings strong aoe; combat brings a crappy cleave.

#36 orderofmaken

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 03:14 PM

Well, according to a recent twitter comment somebody asked GC on the related BF nerf, he answered with this:

Yes. Combat had just become "swap on cleave fights only." A cleave advantage is fine, but it was too far off.

But, he also slated that Combat may get a better AOE tool in the future for larger groups.

#37 Pathal

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 09:19 PM

So, instead of making us choose between 3 good cleave mechanics/styles, we have to choose between 2 mediocre ones and one spec that really has no cleave at all.

Seems legit.

#38 metzli

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 09:26 PM

One spec that really has no PVE role at all * (Meaning subelty before and after said nerfs).
List of my ranked fights.
Also I have a Twitch where I have kill videos and such.

#39 Aldriana

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Posted 24 December 2012 - 10:52 PM

While I certainly understand the disappointment - getting nerfed is never fun - I'd appreciate it if we could keep the conversation constructive. I think we're pretty clear on the the "Blade Flurry will suck when/if this goes live" point by now.

#40 theherecy

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Posted 26 December 2012 - 01:33 AM

One spec that really has no PVE role at all * (Meaning subelty before and after said nerfs).


On this point, sub is obviously underplayed now and they realise this and try to bring some positive changes on the ptr build. 4% extra damage: cool!

I don't understand why changes like that aren't implemented immediately; it would bring the spec on part maybe > than assass and provoke more variety which is half the problem with rogues anyway. Every tier seems to force your hand hard on which spec to play.

I haven't been playing this game long enough to know but it feels blizzard can't be bothered with the hassle of tuning another spec this tier...




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