Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Threat Redux

Ghostcrawler Revisits Threat
Helloooo! This is a surprising and rather large change!

The TL:DR version of that link is that tanks should worry about survival not threat. They are massively bumping the amount of threat generated while in tanking mode (blood presence, bear form, etc.).

Pertinent quotes:
"We’ve gotten over the concept that threat needs to be a major part of PvE gameplay. We have therefore decided to buff tank threat generation in a hotfix this week to where it’s generally not a major consideration. We expect the community to gradually stop using threat-tracking mods as players realize they don’t need them."
So, this week(a week from now?) there will be a hotfix:
"Hotfix: The threat generated by classes in their tanking mode has been increased from three times damage done to five times damage done."

There are longer term plans to change threat and survivability, but those are not things that can be applied in a hotfix.

For example, the next content patch will likely have a change to the way vengeance works to buff the speed at which it stacks. That will make tank swaps a little smoother, so the new tank doesn't have to worry about both popping cooldowns and putting out enough threat so that the old tank (with their full vengeance stack) doesn't pull off them immediately.

There are also some plans to potentially change pallies, warriors, and druids to have a active survival mechanic similar to how blood DKs have with death strike. However, the plans for that seemed hazy and not something that would happen in the near or even medium future.

I'm excited that threat will be buffed. It's not hard to keep threat now, but the first 20 seconds can be hairy if I dodged an attack and don't have a lot of vengeance when I drop my first runestrike. Especially if there is an enrage timer and people are going balls to the wall with dps. Now, as others will point out, if they haven't already, these threat changes won't fix anything if you've got misbehaving raiders. No threat buffs are going to save the situation if someone jumps the gun and pulls before the tank or is dpsing the wrong add. But these changes will smooth things out.

I admit to some shock that Blizzard thinks they are or will be buffing threat enough to curtail the use of threat trackers. Perhaps I've been prioritizing survival over threat for a while now, but the top dps are usually not that far behind me in threat if we start on the boss at the same time. Perhaps I'm only remembering the first 30 seconds of the fight? I'll look during the raid tonight. Either way, to expect that threat trackers are obsolete means that there is never the smallest chance that a dps can pull off of a tank, even in the first few GCDs of the fight. It's a noble goal, but I'm not sure it will ever be realized. Though I'll happily eat these words if it does come to pass.

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