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Rage! Rage! Raaage!

April 5, 2010

First off, read this! Read eeeeeeet!

Good news, everyone! So. Many. Good. News!

Let’s go by topics, shall we?

1 – Rage will not be tied to damage done anymore!

The Ultimate Rage Normalization! Under this new model, DPS Warriors generate rage by simply attacking. That’s it: doesn’t matter whether you’re Mr. Overgeared G. McGeared or young Nooblet N. McUndergeared, if your weapon has the same speed, you will have the same amount of Rage after bashing something over the head with it. Off-hand attacks giving you 50% rage will keep Fury, which I’m fairly sure will still have the highest cost on their abilities, able to dish out steady damage, and two times more rage off Crits will allow all Warriors to bank up some rage for those delicious “spam like crazy!” moments.

I am actually really surprised Blizzard hasn’t implemented this solution ages ago. It’s so elegant, having a single equation ruling Rage generation for all weapons with Speed being the main variable instead of the current bizarre mish-mash of numbers. It even allows for Haste to give the Warrior more Rage to spend (the main idea behind Haste in Cataclysm being “more Haste = more resources”), simply because you’ll be hitting more often and the equation will only consider base (non-augmented) weapon speed.

2 – No more Pantsless Tanking!

As fun as running friends through dungeons you overgear on your skivvies is, having to remove your armor to produce enough Rage (read: Threat) while tanking lower level content is still a bother. Even with Shield Specialization giving us some token Rage when Lady Avoidance decides to give us a long, passionate kiss, dry spells still happen when you’re tanking stuff that just can’t deal enough damage. My Warrior, who’s sitting pretty at mostly 232 Tier 9 gear level, has 45% Avoidance plus 16% Block and she’s taking 72% less physical damage when things actually manage to hit her. And that’s without even counting Thunder Clap’s effective 20% DPS reduction on melee enemies, and without Demoralizing Shout or any other mitigation/avoidance tricks either!

So what does it all mean? What are all those silly numbers about? Well, if whatever Big Bad Boss hitting my little average Warrior is not absolutely giving her hell or spewing quite a lot of Magical-type damage, I run the risk of running out of Rage and gimping my threat generation by simply avoiding just two attacks in a row. Once Cataclysm comes, though? All those avoided attacks, and all that damage reduced by thousands upon thousands of armor points… they all count! Of course, Warriors and Druids will be getting less Rage for every point of damage they take to keep the Average Rage Per Second values in Cataclysm to a reasonable level, but finally Prot Warriors and Bear all over the gear spectrum should be getting similar amounts of Rage, only much more smoothly and less spiky than now. No more avoidance-based dry spells, no more “I’m givin’ all she’s got, but I can’t burn all this Rage off!” moments either.

We’ll have to work our Rage so it’s always at a reasonable level, instead of spamming all we can to keep below the cap, or praying for hits to land so we can get enough Rage to Shield Slam. Tanking will require more thinking, and that’s what makes it fun for me!

3 – Screeeeeeaming! Screaming for Rage!

More on-demand Rage on a short cooldown when keeping Rage will actually matter? Do I have to say anything else?

4 – Ding, dong! The Spam is Dead!

Our poor, poor fingers will be spared! No more Repetitive Strain Injury from having to Queue Heroic Strike/Cleave every 1.3 seconds (my, aren’t Haste buffs fun?!)! No more Macroing Heroic Strike to every second attack! *Ragegasm!*

Oh, boy! I can’t wait to see how they work Cleave into this. This whole thing sounds absolutely delightful, even if Heroic Strike now sounds like a Sudden Death Execute: low base cost, eats up extra Rage for more damage. Speculating on how Blizzard will differentiate HS from Execute in Cataclysm should be interesting. I mean, do they even have a reason to keep Execute in the move list?

Yes, some will throw their hands up in the air and boldly declare the sky is falling. But not the Pinball. No, no. This is all very simple in its theory and implementation, Blizzard can’t screw it up like the did it on Burning Crusade. Cataclysm will bring a new era to our kind!

I, for one, welcome our new Warrior overlords.

(And Bears too, I suppose.)

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Tsadilas permalink
    June 30, 2010 01:19

    Hi there. I really enjoy your texts. 🙂
    Yet on this one i disagree. I have a Paladin tank/healer Druid tank/healer Dk tank/dps (all lvl 80)and some others and as of late i really enjoy playing this warrior tank in Nagrand server EU named Tsadilas lvl 67 currently.(at the rate i am leveling i ll be 80 in the next 2 weeks) Although initially tanking with warrior seemed unpleasant and “harder” gradually i realized how to do it right and i enjoy much the existence of abilities “on next swing” like Cleave and HS. These days tanking in my pally seems dull and the real pleasure comes by the dynamic play-style of the warrior-tank. In fact every day i try to get done with the instance for the frosties of my other tanks to go play my warrior.

    For certain as warrior is now needs some patience to learn to play properly but once this happens nothing can compare to the satisfaction it gives. So i would define the warrior as a bit unfriendly class to the newbie but a very rewarding class for the advanced WoW player. With the new proclaimed changes in Cataclysm i am afraid this diversity compared to the other tanking classes will be lost. In fact warrior will be transfomed into a paladin.

    I am also generally afraid that the remove of dodge parry and block rating along with other things will oversimplify the tanking aspect of the game and make it boring since half pleasure of the tanking for me comes to come up with the right defencive ratings mixture”.
    And if this happens guess how much longer those dps queues will get :/

    • June 30, 2010 15:50

      Long reply, nice! =D

      What I like about Warrior tanking is the enormous toolbox. Warriors can do everything well, even if other classes have aspect that can “beat” us. And even then, come Cataclysm our single-target specialty will become even more important. Due to the sheer options in terms of abilities and the amount of them we need to use to tank properly, even though we don’t have a set rotation like DKs, Paladins or Druids, we are considered “harder” to play.

      The thing with Heroic Strike and Cleave isn’t that they are necessary parts of our gameplay like Maul is for Druids. We have plenty of ways to keep mobs on us, specially once you get to level 80 and starting taking Raids. By that time, all you’re using HS and Cleave for is burning off excess Rage, because we don’t need all of those Heroic Strikes to keep a boss on us. Devastate, Revenge and Shield Slam already do plenty on that aspect.

      Since Rage is not normalized as of today, we -always- have a lot of Rage to burn off. So Warrior tanks need to become woodpeckers and mash the same key every second (fast tanking weapon + raid-wide haste buffs…). It’s not a choice, really. We’ll still going to have Heroic Strike and Cleave to help us burn off excess Rage in Cataclysm, but I’m happy that they’ll be vastly more efficient in this aspect. I’ll finally be able to take Heroic Strike off all my attack Macros.

      All those avoidance ratings are still there, I think. The only one that was truly removed was Block Rating. Since not every tank wears shields anymore (we aren’t even the majority!), and bosses punch so hard blocking are effectively useless, Block Rating was only mildly useful to two classes. At least now we’ll have two Protection masteries that will bring some difference between Paladin and Warrior tanks, with Paladins blocking more often and Warriors blocking harder.

      Dodge and Parry are still there, and Parry becomes even more interesting now since it’s going to cut damage for -two- attacks in half. There will still be the mini-game of balancing your avoidance, but we won’t need to burn brain cells and Gold trying to keep a healthy avoidance pool and stay Defense-capped.

      I do believe tanking is still going to be enjoyable in Cataclysm. With CC coming back to the front and AoE taking a backseat, some of the weight will be off our shoulders and we’ll be able to be a bit more deliberate in our work. Less mindless spam (“HS, HS, HS, HS…”), more thinking (“Okay, now I’m getting too much Rage… time to do one or two Heroic Strikes!”), that’s what I want when tanking.

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