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Upcoming Affliction Simplification


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#1 Draele

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:34 PM

As many of you have probably already read, Ghostcrawler has stated (many times) that they are planning on making changes which will impact the rotation in a manner such that 3rd party addons (DoT timers) will not be quite as necessary to do competitive DPS. He listed options such as removing DoTs from the rotation or making the durations of the DoT line up more- IE how UA & Immolate currently function, but more comprehensive.

I'm curious, however, if any of you smart folks can think of a way to somehow meet the goals of the development team to reduce 3rd party mod dependence but without going to such extremes as dumbing the spec down. There is the obvious "make the native debuff tracking better" solution, but I don't quite think that's going to fly. I cringe at the thought of Affliction being dumbed down and am willing to go to great brainstorming lengths and much forum posting to try to pitch any successful ideas to Ghost.

So, any ideas?
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#2 Shocktar

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:39 PM

I think there are several great methods that can be used to reduce the complexity of Affliction without resulting in Shadowbolt spam again, but the term 'dumb down' is in the eye of the beholder. Making Everlasting Affliction affect even one other spell would be huge, and would take a massive timer off our rotation. Perhaps if Haunt had a significantly longer duration, or was part of EA, that would reduce our need to cast a very low DPS, but important debuffing spell.

If every DoT had the same duration, it would also benefit a rotation. Say for example that every DoT was about 15 seconds long (a large decrease in duration), but did the same amount of damage as they currently do. This would virtually eliminate the need/ability to cast Shadowbolt as a filler spell, but would also increase the DPS of all our Dots, and I'm sure the numbers could be tweaked to make the damage out remain constant. That would actually lead to a 'rotation' of DoTs, which is far easier to execute than the current implementation. I'm sure there are other great ideas as well.
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#3 Juised

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:46 PM

Increase the base duration of Curse of Agony by 2 seconds (1 middle tick). This would not impact the DPS of the spell, and would greatly simplify the spell priority queue. (with CoA glyph)
Then your durations would all line up:
UA: 15
Immo: 15
SL: 30
CoA: 30
Possibly extend the Haunt debuff duration too? 15 seconds would be ideal ^^. However just adding 1 tick to CoA would be quite helpful. As it is though affliction isn't terrible..

#4 Draele

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:53 PM

My preliminary thoughts are to eliminate "hot spots" in the rotation where you have several debuffs expiring around the same time (it sounds counterproductive to do this but bear with me) which leads to a somewhat hectic few seconds where things can get fairly messy because so much is going on.

2 tweaks I would propose:

1) Increase the duration of Shadow Embrace to 15-20 seconds. There can be, at times (especially when there is movement involved) situations where this will fall off due to trying to keep a higher priority DoT up. By expanding the window of opportunity to get a Haunt/SB in there exists a much lower chance of SE helping to create an undesirable "hot spot"

2) Attach in one manner or another Siphon Life to Corruption. IE whenever Corruption is cast/refreshed Siphon would be cast/refreshed as well. Damage might be ever so slightly scaled down to compensate for gaining a GCD every 30 seconds. This would completely remove one DoT from the rotation, albeit one which is cast more rarely than the others, but without impacting the core of the rotation. (1 less spell every 30 seconds makes the spec minimally less complex, but at the same time is one less DoT to have to worry about)
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#5 nuibank

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 07:57 PM

If every DoT had the same duration, it would also benefit a rotation. Say for example that every DoT was about 15 seconds long (a large decrease in duration), but did the same amount of damage as they currently do. This would virtually eliminate the need/ability to cast Shadowbolt as a filler spell, but would also increase the DPS of all our Dots, and I'm sure the numbers could be tweaked to make the damage out remain constant. That would actually lead to a 'rotation' of DoTs, which is far easier to execute than the current implementation. I'm sure there are other great ideas as well.


This would have a huge effect on PVP as well, which wouldn't fly.

Removing the travel time from haunt would a step in the right direction.

#6 oresteez

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 08:11 PM

I think there are several great methods that can be used to reduce the complexity of Affliction without resulting in Shadowbolt spam again, but the term 'dumb down' is in the eye of the beholder. Making Everlasting Affliction affect even one other spell would be huge, and would take a massive timer off our rotation. Perhaps if Haunt had a significantly longer duration, or was part of EA, that would reduce our need to cast a very low DPS, but important debuffing spell.

If every DoT had the same duration, it would also benefit a rotation. Say for example that every DoT was about 15 seconds long (a large decrease in duration), but did the same amount of damage as they currently do. This would virtually eliminate the need/ability to cast Shadowbolt as a filler spell, but would also increase the DPS of all our Dots, and I'm sure the numbers could be tweaked to make the damage out remain constant. That would actually lead to a 'rotation' of DoTs, which is far easier to execute than the current implementation. I'm sure there are other great ideas as well.


I don't think making all of the DOT's the same duration would work.

The reason:

Because you don't have the luxury to stand in the same spot the entire fight. There's almost always some reason that you have to move. And as soon as you move and miss a cast, this new rotation is skewed. And you know what you are left with? The exact same situation we are in now.....unless of course you are going to stop casting everything just so you can line up all your DOT's again.

I love this spec, I love the complication and the challenge. Hell, you know what I think? I think they should make it even harder, and buff up the damage. Give us the potential to break 6 or 7K DPS and the potential to have a nervous breakdown, all in the same pretty package!

#7 Juised

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 08:15 PM

6K DPS is already very possible with affliction.

#8 Kryptik

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Posted 21 January 2009 - 10:40 PM

6K DPS is already very possible with affliction.


Yup hit almost 6500 last night, and my numbers just keep getting better. Pushing for 7k! :D

#9 Pidge

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 04:47 AM

I think the best thing that would improve Affliction would be to add a new filler spell that was either 1.5 casting time, or even better, a channeled spell like Drain Life. To me, it's always been the odd casting time of SB that's made maintaining dot rotations annoying.

#10 Ipslore

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 05:21 AM

Along the same lines as Pidge, it would be great to have a filler that could benefit from Grim Reach. While it makes sense with the current talent tree for that filler to be drain life, if it was buffed to do competitive damage with SB, drain life would probably be too good in pvp.

#11 Draele

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 05:43 AM

Along the same lines as Pidge, it would be great to have a filler that could benefit from Grim Reach. While it makes sense with the current talent tree for that filler to be drain life, if it was buffed to do competitive damage with SB, drain life would probably be too good in pvp.


A talent could easily be implemented to function similarly to Blood Gorged. IE While above 90% health Drain Life does +50/100/150% damage. Numbers obviously tweaked as necessary.

Or make a core change to Drain Life that converts overhealing to damage...
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#12 Nicarras

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 05:50 AM

Haunt needs to be instant cast and/or have no travel time.
More dots need similar lengths, even with glyphs or however.
Remove Siphon Life and add its functionality into the aff tree other ways. Add healing to Corruption and buff CoA dmg, something like that.

Those are my top 3.

#13 RexfelisLXIX

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 08:49 AM

I would like to see curse of agony not be a curse. Rename it Affliction of Agony and let us use curses the way they were intended, as raid support, rather than dps. Other than CoD, which is an entirely unique spell, all the other curses are utilitarian in nature, and almost never get used. I am the raid support loc as we currently are without either boomkin or unholy DK. I throw a 3/3 Mal CoE and all the other locs we happen to have on a particular night use CoA. It would be great to see one loc with CoE, another using CoR and a third with CoW, but it never happens. Shamans can put out a forest of totems and not compromise their DPS, why should we have to make the choice between supporting the raid or personal DPS?

#14 fallenman

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 03:07 PM

Changing our nuke would do nothing to benefit affliction, nor would it simplify it in any way. And in fact, changing to a channeled spell would be even worse. Not much point in discussing it anyways, as blizzard has stated they are not going to replace shadowbolt with anything for affliction. Shadowbolt being our nuke is fine and shouldn't be changed. There's simply no benefit to doing so.

That said, I do think that getting something like immolate removed from the rotation, and maybe increasing the duration on haunt (but not the cooldown!) would be a big help. I actually wouldn't mind an increase to the SE duration either.

Another thing that could help would be making Haunt and/or UA instant cast. Or removing Haunt's cast time. There's a lot of little things that could be done. The spec needs some simplification. As it stands, once content becomes more difficult than hogger, the spec will be a problem if it remains as is.

#15 rutiene

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 03:19 PM

The main thing with Haunt is that it cannot last as long as Corruption, or the refreshing part of it would be useless and something else to manage.

Now, I completely with agree with removing Haunt's cast time. It needs to be done. The point of being Affliction is mobility, except 20% of our DoT damage depends on a cast time spell. The change to balancing Affliction around a spell like Haunt was a nerf to locks, and I don't think people realize that yet.

#16 Guest_Akj_*

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 03:27 PM

Haunt is the main culprit behind the clunkiness of affliction. Increasing the haunt & SE debuff duration to 15s and making haunt instant cast are more than enough to simplify the spec.

#17 dakalro

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 04:10 PM

I'd have to say that the most annoying part is Haunt travel time. With a lot of DoTs on different timers I don't need to guesstimate when to cast another spell when I know when to cast everything else.

As minor wishes there would be SE duration and possibly Haunt duration, they're deceptively low on fights where you move quite a bit.

And lowest prio would be DoT lengths and maybe, just maybe the mixing of dmg+utility curses (every curse does dmg or CoA/CoD become magic).

#18 Smurrf

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 04:44 PM

Putting DL with Corruption on Everlasting Affliction would be very welcome and probably fits best in terms of balance, but by name you'd expect Unstable Affliction to be the additional one, if anything. Either would work very well indeed though...but that'd have to go hand in hand with Haunt not having a travel time. Admittedly, I'd rather see Haunt lose its casting time and travel time above all else. That alone would go a long way towards clearing up mobility issues.

#19 Auze

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 04:53 PM

The only thing that would simplify dots currently, is to make their duration longer. What makes affliction so "hard" is the rate of having to refresh can be so fast that it's like watching an expert play Simon. Everquest Necromancers had just as many dots to rotate, however it wasn't very hard simply because they lasted upwards of two minutes a dot.

The only other alternative, is to start combining two dots into one so that you're only rotating three instead of six. This would become far more dependent on +hit, but thats something we're already used to.

#20 Shocktar

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Posted 22 January 2009 - 05:04 PM

It is important to note that if DoT durations were increased, we'd have more time to shadowbolt, which would result in a DPS increase. This also has negative PVP implications, as they'd most likely have to nerf either the dots or the shadowbolts damagewise, a detriment to more than one PVP situation to be sure.
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