Ah, now I remember

(I’ll try to be brief, as I really should be doing other things)

…why I always felt somewhat uncomfortable about the notion of being a damage dealer in WoW. Yesterday I had the opportunity to run a couple of heroics as Fury, testing the 4.0.6 changes as well as the sweet mace from Magmaw I got the day before. It was really good fun. And, if I may say so myself, I produced a rather amazing damage output. Oh wait, it turns out I didn’t. Turns out I was OP and am being hotfixed now. Oh, right.

This has always bothered me a lot when looking at DPS specs and contemplating playing them. I would like my performance to be a result of my understanding of class mechanics and personal execution ability. I’d like to be able to believe that the damage I do is a result of stacking the right stats and pushing the right buttons. You know … skill. But too often it seems that whatever difference I can effect via skill fades in comparison to the buff (or nerf) the developers might be handing out. That, in turn, very much fosters a community attitude in which underperforming players forfeit the quest for self-improvement in favour of whining on forums and blogs.

I’m not saying this nerf was not needed. It probably was needed, Raging Blow became ridiculously powerful, to the point where you had to wonder at which (not too distant) point it would outscale Execute *. Besides, for myself, at this point in time, I know my rotation wasn’t optimal, so whatever this costs me in damage I probably can make up by playing better. What I’m saying is that as a damage dealer I’d like to get a set of toys that is deep and multifaceted enough for me to be able to learn to compensate for its weaknesses by discovering interesting strengths. What I find less compelling is having my toys exchanged every time I’m found not playing with them the exact way I am meant to.

I hear Holy Paladins would also quite appreciate having their toys finally left alone.

* Napkin math: Raging Blow scales with weapon damage, attack power and mastery. Execute only scales with attack power.

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2 thoughts on “Ah, now I remember

  1. Scraddog

    Fury is an odd beast at the moment.

    Anyone can play fury, playing it right takes time and skill so most people get it wrong and try to use things that really hurt their rage generation or stat up wrong for the current gear level.

    Yes I’m still trying to get some epic weapons but as I look at the combat logs for boss puls for myself agains boss pulls for another fury warrior i know who dual wields those maces and has gear that is better than mine I find on average my individual hits are going in for more.

    Net result is I’m overall hitting harder than him over the same period of time.

    Mastery is very very good for fury warriors as it will at times affect two abilities that stack or in the odd cast three that stack.

    Keeping your engrage effect going as long as possible and as often as possible affects evrything you hit, Death wish is another cooldown which when used again increases your damage and is affected by mastery and again affects evry single hit (there is my double stack of mastery affecting things) and hitting raging Blow is again affected by mastery (wowzers thats a tripple hit on mastery every 6 seconds or so) and running 80% increase from mastery level thats quite a hit. (yes getting 80% or higher mastery is not too difficult right now)

    This allows Raging blow to churn out some very big crunchy numbers.
    The raging blow adjustment was all because Fury warriors are now using mastery and at higher gear levels it gets really out of whack.

    Reply
  2. Colt

    We are damage dealers. Most buffs or nerfs we get directly affect how much damage we do, and yes, sometimes that can make finding out your base line a bit tricky. But that said, I think it is a mistake, especially this soon after a big expansion, to judge oneself against other classes, and even, against other similar characters. That may seem daft to some, if you can’t compare, then how do you improve. You judge against yourself.

    I certainly can’t judge my current output against my wrath output – my level and equipment has changed, as has the structure of my damage dealing. Against other classes, dps success is too dependent on circumstance and fight length. Is it a fight against trash – DoT heavy classes won’t get into their stride, where as an Arcane mage can spam Arcane blast for 10 secs, deplete all resources and nearly always top the scale. With the different mechanics, no 2 boss fights are the same. In addition, the powers that be are still trying to balance the damage output of the classes.

    I find it hard even to judge against my own output from other fights. Last week we did the worm, Magmaw. The couple of trash prior to the worm allowed me to top 14k dps, and still have full mana bars afterwards. Against Magmaw, with the combination of movement, a new fight, switching targets, jumping on his head and chaining him down, but using all my cooldowns, I barely managed 10k. As far as I can see, the only way I can judge my numbers is to see how I do on the next Magmaw fight. (If we use the same tactics that is!)

    The very best way for me to judge I find is by the feel of it. You know when you’re in the zone, when you can anticipate the tanks actions, and target changes, when you have timed the burst damage perfectly, when you stay safely out of the bad, but keep movement to a minimum, and, for the likes of me, if you finish the fight alive, with mana depleted and all cooldowns used. When that happens I don’t really mind if I’m at the top or bottom of the list, I can feel happy about my performance.

    Apologies for the waffle.

    Reply

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