Friday, 6 August 2010

"We'd rather make the Careers more similar than less similar"

From the latest Q&A posted by Gaarawarr there was a question posted about Shamans and Archmages, but the answer does relate to Black Orcs somewhere down the line, you can tell which part by the title (which I purposely misquoted to make it sound better).

Q – Any plans on evaluating the parity between Shaman and Archmage DPS specs?

Nate - The only thing I can really say to that is what I have said a couple of times before. All things being equal, I’d rather make the Careers more similar than less similar. But I really don’t have an answer beyond that.

Now it looks fairly innocent enough, but we've already started to see that happen in the boss tree where we got the swordmasters group heal instead of our anti detaunt (which was a nerf to Black Orcs.. and for the record, we still never got a reason for the change). So I thought I'd have a look at what else is in the equivalent tree to see if we could make Boss mastery a better choice.

Now, the Boss tree is meant to be an AoE/Group Buff tree which does very little of either it has one decent tactic in it (Big Brawlin') and the rest of the tree can be happily ignored forever. Swordmasters have it as an magic/anti magic tree.

Now we share the same opening tactic so that's fair enough, we can skip straight to the first action. I dont know a lot about Swordmasters so any SM's please correct me as I just write this out from

Swordmaster: Aethyric Armor - 35AP - The power coursing through your blade is extended to your armor, increasing it by 660 and increasing your Disrupt chance by 5% (is this a permanent buff, the WarDB tooltip doesn't show any duration etc)

Black Orc:
We'z Bigger - 45AP -20s cool down. Needs middle plan -- Deals 176 damage. Increases the armor of all groupmates within 20 feet by 429 for 20 seconds.

Both are fairly meh and don't stack with armour pots or any other armour buff making it all but useless, I've never used We'z Bigger but when compared to Big Swing + Big Brawlin' it's pointless for groups. I'd suggest both sides get the following:

40AP 20s cool down. Needs middle plan/stance -- Deals (low) damage, increases resists by 200 and disrupt chan
ce by 5% for all group mates within 60feet.

Swordmaster: Calming Winds (tactic) - Increase Disrupt chance by 10% when in Improved Balance, and 20% when in Perfect balance.

Black Orc: Big Brawlin (tactic) -
Big Swing now Snares for 40% for 5 seconds and Disorients, increasing build times by 25%.

I'll happily give Big Swing to the Swordmasters making it affect Wrath of Hoeth, disrupt fits in with the anti magic side of things for SM's and the aoe side for Black Orcs.

Swordmaster: Protection of Hoeth - 25AP - requires first balance - 10s cool down -- You call upon the magic in your blade to form a barrier to protect you, absorbing up to 825 damage for up to 5 seconds.

Black Orc: Rock 'Ard - 35AP - 10s cool down - requires first plan --
Deals 77 damage. Activates protective shield that absorbs up to 160 over 5 seconds.

As a Black Orc I'd happily take a bubble that didn't require me to hit the target first even if it meant I didn't do damage on the attack (it's low anyway). So yeah, give Borcs a copy of Protection of Hoeth plz.

Swordmaster: Blessing Of Heaven (tactic) - Path of Hoeth abilities will place an effect on your target for 10 seconds. During this time, any allies who strike the target will recover 132 health over 3 seconds.

Black Orc:
No Choppin' Me (tactic) - Follow 'me Lead will also buff all group mates within 30 feet of the defensive target.

This is another one where I'm fairly... Meh about both tactics, BoH looks nice but when you look at the amount that gets healed it's fairly pathetic to get any solid use from it. No Choppin' Me is one of those tactics that IF you're in a melee group is very nice, IF your group stays within 30 feet if your defensive target and IF you could justify using it over an armour debuff. Honestly though, it's in our soddin' buff tree and Mythic give it a pathetically low size to effect people.. Meh, at least double it, even up to 100 feet and it'd be better, though maybe still not worth picking that high up the tree. Any SM's or Bobs have a better idea to replace this tactic?

And finally...

Swordmaster: Whispering Wind - 20s cool down - requires 3rd balance -- You release two swift blows that deal 153 Spirit damage each, interrupting any building attack and will Silence your target for 4 seconds. The winds then aid group members within 100 feet for the next 10 seconds by decreasing the cool down of abilities used by 5 seconds

Black Orc:
WAAAAAAAGH! - requires 3rd plan -- Deals 246 Corporeal damage to all targets within 30 feet. Also reduces target's Corporeal resistance by 160 for 20 seconds.

The iconic ability of WAR, the one that is screamed daily by players and developers alike...
WAAAAAAAGH! is a pile of shit. Even specced up to max in it the damage is still no more than our core AoE attack Da Big Un. Whispering Wind is a fantastic action for warbands and scenario group and I'm seeing more and more SM's in top level warbands these days specced for Whispering Wind. In fact it's such a nice action that it fits in perfectly as WAAAAAAAGH! instead of our rotten one. So I'll happily leech WW of you SM's and rename it to WAAAAAAAGH! :)

WAAAAAAAGH! -- You shout loudly causing two shock waves dealing 153 Corporeal damage each, interrupting any building attack and will Silence your target for 4 seconds. The shouting then 'inspires' group members within 100 feet for the next 10 seconds by decreasing the cool down of abilities used by 5 seconds

Sounds good huh? Well to me it does being a Black Orc. In all honesty though, this is just a look at the one mastery I'm not overly keen on for Black Orcs and is possibly favoured a bit towards us, however there are actions and tactics in other trees that I'm sure Swordmasters would happily copy from Black Orcs as well. While we don't want clones so classes must be somewhat distinct there needs to be a bit more parity for sure, after all I'm not sure either class wants to be Swordmasters of Gork.