I am going to be very busy of the next few weeks to months with uni work so unfortunately posts may be few and far between. Hoping to churn out a few ideas I’ve got back logged. Here is a quick list of some changes I’d like to see for Feral’s in Warlords of Draenor.
The dev’s have said that they would like to address button bloat by pruning abilities that are not in your core rotation, are not fun abilities and don’t see much use. For Ferals I think this could mean that abilities like Innervate and Hurricane could become Resto / Boomkin only and I think Soothe could be removed from the game, but there are other options as I discussed in my enrage effects post. Additionally with the removal of spells requiring positional requirements I can see something happening with Shred and Ravage.
At the moment Mangle and Shred occupy the same niche as our main combo point generators. This seems redundant, the 20% damage bonus isn’t enough to off set the faster combo point generation from Mangle which contributes to higher Savage Roar and Rip up-time. So I can see these two abilities being merged. Also, Shred and Ravage both have positional requirements (which are being removed) so I could possibly see these two being merged into the “stealth” move and leaving Mangle on its own. However, Mangle is also a Bear ability. To further “differentiate” the Feral and Guardian specs, Shred could become the Cat spell and Mangle the Bear spell. In any scenario, these spells are prime candidates for “ability pruning”.
Glyphs & Baseline Abilities
I don’t like that Feral’s basically have two “mandatory” glyphs; Glyph of Cat Form and Glyph of Savagery. This is poor design in that both of these glyphs could have been made baseline abilities. The Glyph of Cat Form was an old talent that for some reason wasn’t rolled into our passives with the MOP redesign. The Savage Roar glyph is kinda similar to the Paladin Glyph of Inquisition in that it allows us to better manage the spell. Making some of the glyphs baseline abilities would free up extra glyph slots for more interesting choices and potentially make room for new glyphs.
I also would like to see the Glyph of Stampeding Roar become baseline – if not for all specs at least for Feral and Guardian. It seems counter intuitive to have a raid wide cool down with a range of only 10 yards. Then it takes up a glyph slot to give it the functionality it should have by default. I think this is poor design. Glyphs should be interesting by offering choice e.g. Glyph of Survival Instincts or customizing game play e.g. Glyph of Dash and not be mandatory like Glyph of Cat Form.
I would like to see a glyph that lets you cast Tranquility in form. Other classes can still move, dps and contribute to the raid while using their raid cool downs but Druids can’t. I think this is a throw back to class “flavour”; certain forms have restrictions similarly to stances with Warriors and Priests. Normally I am a fan of flavour however, I feel that Druids, particularly Feral’s and Guardian’s, are at a disadvantage when competing with classes for the same niche. Take Rogues for example, they are a melee damage dealer and leather wearer like Feral Druids. Their raid cool down, Smoke Bomb, is instant cast and doesn’t affect their damage through put. Tranquility on the other hand is a channeled spell, un-shifts you from your form and reduces your damage throughput. Smoke Bomb’s duration can be extended with a glyph, so I don’t think it’s unreasonable to hope for a Druid glyph that lets you cast in form. This is mainly because you can still utilise the spell effectively without the glyph. The glyph would serve as a play style augment like the Paladin Glyph of Consecration in my opinion.
While we are on the subject of baseline abilities, I would love to see something that would help us with target swapping. The closest we have is casting Symbiosis on a Warlock for Soul Swap. This was fairly decent – 30 sec cool down and no cost apart from the GCD. It would be nice if it moved Thrash as well. I used Redirect a few times, but found it was clunky to use and didn’t yield the same level of benefit that Soul Swap did.
What used to be good for target swapping was the old Stampede talent. While it was tied to Feral Charge, it gave us mobility to move to a new target, a little bit of burst damage (reduced Ravage cost) and combo point/s all in one swoop. One one of the Team Waffle Podcasts, there was some talk of making Wild Charge baseline for Feral / Guardians and putting Dash in it’s place. While I like this idea for Feral’s, it has several problems;
- Other specs loose access to the spell.
- It would allow us to have Wild Charge and Displacer Beast simultaneously which would have ramifications for PVP i.e. too much movement.
- No guarantee that we could get the old talent back or something to help with target swapping.
- I don’t want to lose Dash.
I want to dedicate an entire blog post to this spell. Let’s just say for now that I loved it conceptually but was disappointed with the implementation and want some significant changes.
Changing forms while stunned
This is one of my pet hates of the class. When you become stunned and you change forms, instead of shifting straight to that form e.g. Cat -> Bear, you get stuck in your human form. This leaves you more vulnerable and has annoyed me for as long as I can remember. I think it has something to do with un-shifting being off the GCD or some back end design process but I’m not sure. In any case I would love to see this changed because the current design is frustrating to play. I have two thoughts on the issue;
- If you are stunned, then you “shouldn’t” be able to move or shift / un-shift.
- There should be no in between step when shifting forms, you should go straight to that selected form.
This is the red-headed step child of the tier 4, level 60 talents in PVE terms. It has been left unchanged throughout the entire expansion. Force of Nature was changed, buffed and is now a comparable choice to Soul of the Forest, even surpassing it’s throughput. I wrote a post discussing the pros and cons of the talent compared to Soul of the Forest, but in a nut shell it is only usable with Berserk, is on the GCD and dosen’t contribute to managing your bleeds or Savage Roar. I would like to see it modified to be a competitive choice with the other two talents. I don’t want to be that guy who only brings problems so here are some suggestions;
- Abilities generate twice as many combo points
- Mangle or Shred (which ever one remains) is replaced by Ravage – same energy costs and either does more damage / can’t be dodged or parried / applies a new bleed.
- Bleeds tick twice as often and Savage Roar lasts twice as long.
- Ferocious Bite can be used at any time and deals damage as if it were used at 5 combo points and 50 energy.
What do you think is the biggest issue Feral’s have at the moment? What would you like to see in Warlords of Draenor? Are you happy with Feral Druids as they are currently? I would like to know what you think. Please feel free to leave a comment on the post, send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow me on twitter @Elamari_ or like and comment on the File Under Feral Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/FileUnderFeral.