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LogisticSaucer
03-01-2010, 10:58 AM
Some upcoming Cata changes from blue:

Block Rating - Block is being redesigned to scale better. Blocked attacks will simply hit for 30% less damage. Block rating will improve your chance to block, though overall block chances will be lower than they are today.

Parry - Parry no longer provides 100% avoidance and no longer speeds up attacks. Instead, when you parry an attack, it and the next attack will each hit for 50% damage (assuming they hit at all). In other words, Dodge is a chance to avoid 100% of the damage from one attack, Parry is a chance to avoid 50% of the damage from two attacks, and Block is a chance to avoid 30% of the damage from one attack.

Armor - The way Armor mitigates damage is not changing, but the Armor stat has been rebalanced to mirror changes to the armor curve in Cataclysm. As a result, bonus Armor will go down slightly overall. We are also changing the mitigation difference among armor types so that plate doesn’t offer so much more protection than mail, leather, and cloth.

Shield Block Value - This stat will no longer be present on items, since the amount blocked is always proportional to the amount of damage done. Talents and other effects might still modify the damage-reduction percentage from 30%, however.

Defense - Defense is being removed from the game entirely. Tanking classes should expect to become uncrittable versus creatures just by shifting into Defensive Stance, Frost Presence, Bear Form, or by using Righteous Fury.



If you are a tank (druids excepted), expect to see:
No more Defense on gear. Existing Defense becomes Dodge, Parry, or Block Rating.
No more Block Value on gear. Existing Block Value becomes Block Rating.
You’ll have as much Stamina as you’re used to, though you may notice your tanking plate has a bit less Stamina than a comparable piece of DPS plate, since we tend to take the gem budget out of your most attractive stat.
Bonus Armor on gear will go down slightly.

mistersix
03-01-2010, 11:01 AM
the blue link on mmo: http://www.mmo-champion.com/news-2/cataclysm-stat-system-changes/

Acidbaron
03-01-2010, 11:11 AM
Might be worth mentioning it's the cataclysm changes and not some random patch :P

Interesting change to parry, so it factors into more migation wonder if this will also change some parry related talents like the DK spell one.

Darwar
03-01-2010, 11:57 AM
Looks like parry won't be an avoidance stat anymore. Block and parry will be a randomn damage mitigation stat. Tanks with block and/or parry will take more consistent damage but has less occurance of spike damage events. Looks like a good change to me.

Depends of the conversion and diminishing returns of block rating and parry rating, block rating may become a paladin and warrior's main tanking stat.

Reev
03-01-2010, 11:58 AM
I think that looks very very interesting. Also makes parry a lot more attractive to me. It mitigates almost as much damage as a dodge, but spreads it out more. The downside is that the second "charge" can be eaten by a dodge, a miss, or another parry, but the upside is that it'll smooth out damage far more than full avoidance. In other words, as a healer, I'd be much happier to see my tank take 2 10k hits than dodge a hit and then take a 20k hit. Also makes the stat more interesting in general I think, since it'll be different from dodge in a significant way for the first time.

Block also looks a lot more appealing to me. With all these mitigation stats being tossed around, I imagine unmitigated hits are really really gonna hurt in Cataclysm. I like the changes.

TomHuxley
03-01-2010, 12:20 PM
I'm on board with these changes as well. At the very least it will make Parry something more interesting than the bastard stepchild of dodge that we grudgingly accept because our choices are limited.

Also, while I know that some people have previously feared that a chance like this makes block just an RNG form of armor...I don't see the problem with several differing forms of mitigation being in the game. It's no less interesting than having three different forms of avoidance, and given that they work quite differently from one another (block mitigates less but probably more frequently, parry mitigates more and works over the course of two attacks) there may well be encounters or gearing levels that will favor stacking one over the other.

Looking forward to learning more about the implementation.

Reev
03-01-2010, 12:23 PM
The only issue I see is if they let Parry/Block/Dodge scale up too quickly. At our current avoidance levels in game, it would be very nearly possible to never take a full hit. If all incoming attacks were either blocked parried or dodged, then all incoming attacks would have to hit twice as hard, which could be a very painful barrier to entry for some tanks.

Sterbefall
03-01-2010, 12:25 PM
Huzzah, this might actually make DKs easier to heal for many healers (trees especially). We'll be far less spiky.

Eravian
03-01-2010, 12:29 PM
Mentioned this on the one in general chat, but I'm curious to see how it's all going to play out.

Defense - Defense is being removed from the game entirely. Tanking classes should expect to become uncrittable versus creatures just by shifting into Defensive Stance, Frost Presence, Bear Form, or by using Righteous Fury.

Stamina - Because of the way we will be assigning Strength, Agility, and Intellect, non-plate wearers will end up with more Stamina than before. Health pools will be much closer between plate-wearers and other classes.

Armor - The way Armor mitigates damage is not changing, but the Armor stat has been rebalanced to mirror changes to the armor curve in Cataclysm. As a result, bonus Armor will go down slightly overall. We are also changing the mitigation difference among armor types so that plate doesn’t offer so much more protection than mail, leather, and cloth.

If you are a tank (druids excepted), expect to see:



No more Defense on gear. Existing Defense becomes Dodge, Parry, or Block Rating.
No more Block Value on gear. Existing Block Value becomes Block Rating.
You’ll have as much Stamina as you’re used to, though you may notice your tanking plate has a bit less Stamina than a comparable piece of DPS plate, since we tend to take the gem budget out of your most attractive stat.
Bonus Armor on gear will go down slightly.



If you are a melee DPS class, druid tank, or hunter, expect to see:


A lot more Stamina. Bear-form Stamina scaling will be lowered as a result.
Strength if you wear plate. Agility if you wear mail or leather.
Existing Attack Power becomes Agility and Stamina.Armor Penetration becomes Haste or Crit.
No Intellect on melee gear. Hunters won’t need Intellect since they will no longer use mana. Shaman and Retribution paladins will get mana and spell damage in other ways.

Those are pulled straight from the blue post... looks like they're serious about wanting to let any warrior, dk, paladin or druid tank when necessary.

Makes me wonder how they're going to balance talent trees and raid encounters to make the actual protection trees more appealing than hybrid specs or a different tree entirely.

mistersix
03-01-2010, 01:04 PM
It seems like mitigation is what's going to really serve to distinguish tanks from everyone else since our stamina pools will be similar and our plate will be less protective in comparison.

Satrina, I'd love to hear your take on the parry changes in particular. I know you've wanted a different take on it over the years anyway.

Reev
03-01-2010, 01:07 PM
If you parry an attack, and then block the next one, do you get a 65% reduction? (0.5*0.7=0.35) or does the parry just overwrite the block? These are rhetorical questions since none of us knows yet, but it would alter the value of the stat for sure.

Acidbaron
03-01-2010, 01:47 PM
The only issue I see is if they let Parry/Block/Dodge scale up too quickly. At our current avoidance levels in game, it would be very nearly possible to never take a full hit. If all incoming attacks were either blocked parried or dodged, then all incoming attacks would have to hit twice as hard, which could be a very painful barrier to entry for some tanks.

I do remember them stating that they are trying to make it so that 'caps' would be hard to reach, So i do think they would make it so and tweak the DR enough if it stacks to high. That it doesn't become an issue.

What i find interesting is that they are reducing migation from tanking plate (reduced armor) and are removing the addition 'avoidance' from parry and are turning it into a more migation stat same for block.

Vrekgar
03-01-2010, 02:15 PM
Interesting changes overall. The points about caps sounds like they might be implementing some lite Diminishing returns for more stats makeing it harder to hard cap things like hit and crit.

The parry changes definately make it a more attractive stat to aquire.

mistersix
03-01-2010, 02:20 PM
For the game, these mechanics make a good deal of sense but I question there validity in the fantasy milieu. Why on earth does Parry protect you from more damage than a shield block? That's a bit nonsensical.

Sark
03-01-2010, 02:32 PM
Its interesting the way they are talking about stamina and it seems like tanks will not have dramatically higher health pools than they do now while they are giving us more mitigation tools in block and parry.

This is not what I really expected. Without larger health pools, we are still at the whim of the RNG where we can go from full health to dead before healers can really react. Magic damage is not mitigated by those things, and a couple consecutive un-dodged/parried/blocked hits would probably kill you as well since the expectation seems like it will be that most hits are mitigated in some way. Healers would still be forced to keep the tank topped off at all times to avoid RNG deaths, and not worry as much about efficiency.

I guess the wild card here is the Mastery bonuses, which will probably increase health and/or flat mitigation for all damage. In the system they are describing here, that seems like the only way to push us to EH levels where healing efficiency actually matters.

TomHuxley
03-01-2010, 02:50 PM
Tanks are going to have vastly larger health pools than they do now. It's just that the amount of stamina on plate gear vs other gear will be closer together.

Arikak
03-01-2010, 04:49 PM
For the game, these mechanics make a good deal of sense but I question there validity in the fantasy milieu. Why on earth does Parry protect you from more damage than a shield block? That's a bit nonsensical.

I feel exactly the same way. I said this in the other thread in the general forums but they need to switch the mechanics for Block and Parry. Or at least the values.

Actually, if I had my way each tank would only have only 2 ways to mitigate (not counting armor or abilities).

Warriors and paladins: Block and Dodge

Druids and Death Knights: Parry and Dodge.

Same *ish* base dodge for for all 4 classes. But blocking would work twice as often as parry for half as much damage mitigated.

Under this system you would not see parry or block on gear but rather 'Deflection Rating' which would contribute either to your block or your parry.

Eliminating a defensive stat would allow tanks to round out their stats a bit more and make things like requiring more hit on tanks a reality for developers.

mistersix
03-01-2010, 05:30 PM
Tanks are going to have vastly larger health pools than they do now. It's just that the amount of stamina on plate gear vs other gear will be closer together.

The example they cited is dps plate potentially having more PROPORTIONATE stamina than tanking plate because of the impact sockets have to item budgets. Regardless because the gaps are closer together I certainly hope our damage is closer together because frankly I worry about a world where our only significant EH advantage is RNG based (the new mitigation approaches to block and parry).

Bowen
03-01-2010, 06:59 PM
Can't say I'm a fan of the tanking changes they have shared so far, and as a prot warrior it been a simple case of been in def stance to become uncrittable.

Arikak
03-01-2010, 07:43 PM
Can't say I'm a fan of the tanking changes they have shared so far, and as a prot warrior it been a simple case of been in def stance to become uncrittable.

When was the last time you had to seriously worry about being uncrittable outside a gimmick set? :)

Bowen
03-01-2010, 08:04 PM
Me never, because I know how tanking works.

Hammerfists
03-01-2010, 08:35 PM
For the game, these mechanics make a good deal of sense but I question there validity in the fantasy milieu. Why on earth does Parry protect you from more damage than a shield block? That's a bit nonsensical.

Hey if you're buying the whole walrus men and dragons thing then anything is possible.


The example they cited is dps plate potentially having more PROPORTIONATE stamina than tanking plate because of the impact sockets have to item budgets. Regardless because the gaps are closer together I certainly hope our damage is closer together because frankly I worry about a world where our only significant EH advantage is RNG based (the new mitigation approaches to block and parry).

Dont forget mastery. Heres a link to Pallie Mastery beta:

http://static.mmo-champion.com/mmoc/images/news/2009/december/gamesystems_020.jpg

You can tell they messed up in the prot tree, the damage should be negative not positive :D. Basically our mastery will be a defense lite stat. Also we will be socketing more for avoidence/mitigation then we currently are now imo which further pulls us ahead than dps for raids. Im sure Cata Naxx raid will see us not far from dps but as we progress you will see dps fall way behind in ability to raid tank but heroics will be no sweat for them which is the ultimate goal for blizz.

mistersix
03-01-2010, 08:50 PM
Oh, I realize they're be boosts left and right but it's still RNG vs. the more stable sta, armor, etc. Blizz wants plate dps to be able to tank normal dungeons but they're said tank specs are still want they want in heroics.

Vrekgar
03-01-2010, 10:58 PM
Well i look at it this way. Bear in mind this is all FANTASY.

Block: 20%
Parry: 20%

Blocked hits reduce damage by 30%
Parried hits reduce damage by 50% Twice.

Attacked 100 Times with Block only and 100 times with Parry only.
Each hit is for 1000 dmg.

20 Blocks is 6000 Damage reduced.
20 Parries is 20000 Possible damage reduction.

Caveat: Parry could proc off a parry reduced hit, thus wasteing a 50% charge or negateing a proc.

I see potential in Parry, Especialy against larger swarms of mobs. More Hits = more chances to proc Reduction. The biggest problem I see is how it reacts with other damage reduction measures like Block. How does it react to absorbed hits.

Arikak
03-01-2010, 11:10 PM
I have a feeling that our chances to parry and block will be much greater than our chance to dodge in Cata.

It just makes sense and we really can't carry over current system paradigms to the new design. Dodge will probably be on a much steeper DR or a higher rating to percentage formula. This belies its power in a small more frequent hit scenario. Dodge remaining nearly as-is would negate everything they are trying to do with the interaction between bosses, tanks, and healers.

Airowird
03-02-2010, 01:58 AM
Personally I will miss the "Miss chance" rating from Defense we will no longer get now.
As I see these changes, I'm aiming for 5% miss, 10-15% dodge, 10-15% Parry, 10% Block as a starting raiding point.
The Parry DR will indeed be less severe, mostly because of the DR avoidance has on the mechanic. e.g. 30% miss/dodge/parry makes a single Parry worth 50% + 70%*50% = 85% instead of 100% total reduction. This will most likely cause Bears to shift more towards Rogue gear, as tanking jewelry will have to have more than just Dodge rating to be attractive to the plate tanks.

As for Parry vs Block I suspect that they will make them not stack with each other, which will allow for slightly more block chance, thus more levelled out damage.

Adrael
03-02-2010, 07:12 AM
Less spikiness.

That's what I see. Those parry and block changes basically mean we'll see less bursts, and they are probably gonna be more predictable.

Less RNG. Easier content?

I hope not. There are plenty of other ways to surprise us and make content harder.

Breccia
03-02-2010, 07:43 AM
Direct quote from http://forums.worldofwarcraft.com/thread.html?topicId=23425466604&postId=234232395741&sid=1#25

Being able to trivialize lower level mobs is sort of a bizarre perk though (and one not shared by all tank classes) and not something we're really interested in preserving.
Ghostcrawler
Lead Systems Designer

I've made my case that shield block shouldn't be a pure scaling factor on various forums (including this one) for months now. Finally I get a response that shows they have thought about it, and they have a valid reason. I may still disagree, but I'm willing to accept it now.

Darwar
03-02-2010, 09:08 AM
I have my doubts as to how good parry will work largely because there is little info on it. There are two scenarios in which Blizzard might implement parry. On a parry, damage will be reduced by 50% on the first hit. How will the subsequent hit be handled? Will the parry buff fades even on the next miss or dodge? Or will the buff stays until the next time one takes damage? Also what happens on consecutive parries? The buff will have to exclude miss and dodge in order for parry to be as good as dodge.

Will the damage reduction be an absolute 50%, additive, or multiplicative?

[Edit]
I suspect that block and block-like mechanics will be a better burst damage reduction stat that parry. Blizzard has a chance to stop the stamina stacking bandwagon. If damage reduction from parry and block is not significant and reliable, the stamina will still be the main tanking stat. Will paladins and warriors be punching bags or will they be bricks?

Reev
03-02-2010, 09:12 AM
I have my doubts as to how good parry will work largely because there is little info on it. There are two scenarios in which Blizzard might implement parry. On a parry, damage will be reduced by 50% on the first hit. How will the subsequent hit be handled? Will the parry buff fades even on the next miss or dodge? Or will the buff stays until the next time one takes damage? Also what happens on consecutive parries? The buff will have to exclude miss and dodge in order for parry to be as good as dodge.

Will the damage reduction be an absolute 50%, additive, or multiplicative?

While in absolute terms of damage taken this may be true, any time you parry, you're pretty much guaranteed 2 swings of relative safety. Either you'll get the parry reduction on the second swing, or you'll dodge or they'll miss. Either way, you're guaranteed 2 safe swings. Dodge, by comparison, only guarantees one safe swing. So while Parry may end up mitigating less total damage over time than dodge, it may have positive relative benefits to survivability.

Proletaria
03-02-2010, 09:25 AM
Pour some beer out for defense, but I don't think the new changes will be anything but interesting. Sadly, interesting doesn't mean they'll be balanced. I have a sinking feeling that the all-new stat system is going to re-start the rollercoaster over again. Here's hoping that i'm wrong!

Rude
03-02-2010, 03:18 PM
I have a sinking feeling that the all-new stat system is going to re-start the rollercoaster over again. Here's hoping that i'm wrong!
You're not.

I would rather see defense stay as well for the increased chance to be missed. That crit reduction should have gone away a long time ago. What might be more appropriate to say is that the ability for bosses to crit probably should have gone away at the same time that crushing blows did. What are they worried about? That an exceptionally low number of shamans might continue to tank?

What sort of interests me here is the possible return of off-tanking stuff. Now it's just two or three tanks having to press a taunt button every encounter and tanking the boss about the same amount of time. But with health pools and armor becoming closer together, is it possible that we're going to see a ret paladin or an arms warrior pick up an add or two while the tanks are holding onto the boss?

I'm also pretty curious about what's going to happen with mastery for death knights. It's pretty easy to bolt in some damage reduction or health buffs when you have a prot tree. It's a little sketchier for druids, but you're still at least confined to one tree.

Proletaria
03-03-2010, 03:04 PM
I've always hoped they would roll over and let blood be the tanking tree (since it's had the most time as the best option for tanking 3.1-3.3), but they seem determined to try every last silly thing they can before admitting defeat on that front. Masteries aren't the only thing made completely screwy by having three tanking trees with fairly unique identities. Most of our funky utlity issues stems from the fact we have the option to provide ebon plague, haste, or ap to the raid. Compared to other classes we may have a similar number of utilities across the board, but when you put it in realistic terms (including the fact we are in one spec for the duration of an encounter, and we can't necessarily use a sub-optimal spec for an encounter just because of the raid buff - ie. unholy vs. saurfang: where's my bone shield bro?) we have a lot less to offer.

Molecule
03-03-2010, 04:54 PM
I've always hoped they would roll over and let blood be the tanking tree (since it's had the most time as the best option for tanking 3.1-3.3), but they seem determined to try every last silly thing they can before admitting defeat on that front. Masteries aren't the only thing made completely screwy by having three tanking trees with fairly unique identities. Most of our funky utlity issues stems from the fact we have the option to provide ebon plague, haste, or ap to the raid. Compared to other classes we may have a similar number of utilities across the board, but when you put it in realistic terms (including the fact we are in one spec for the duration of an encounter, and we can't necessarily use a sub-optimal spec for an encounter just because of the raid buff - ie. unholy vs. saurfang: where's my bone shield bro?) we have a lot less to offer.

There's really nothing too difficult right now about balancing three trees to all be able to tank and dps (balancing them for PvP too is another matter entirely, but that's difficult for any DPS class). Now, they haven't actually implemented it well in the past few patches, but the fact is there are currently two trees (Blood and Feral Combat) that can perform compentently at tanking or damage. It's not dumb luck either; it's just a matter of having specific, nearly essential talents that only appeal to one spec or the other (e.g. WotN vs. BCB or Protector of the Pack vs. King of the Jungle). As long as talents like these exist, you are effectively dealing with two different trees that happen to have a significant number of similar talents, which means that retuning one without affecting the other is just a matter of changing one of those role-exclusive talents.

That being said, mastery does present a potential problem in this regard. They're going to have to solve it for druids though regardless of what happens to death knight trees.

mistersix
03-03-2010, 05:22 PM
Why would they rollover on one of their successes? The masteries wouldn't be that hard to tailor honestly. They could all be designed around dps boosts (+hit, +exp, +rp gen, etc.) that could be useful for tanks and dpsers alike and stuff the tanking oriented elements directly into talents. Or frankly, bake them in. Would it be so bad if a dpser had even more survivability? DPS flavors already have access and frequent use of things like unbreakable armor, AMS, etc already. It wouldn't be game-breaking in the slightest.

Vrekgar
03-03-2010, 05:41 PM
The problem with bakeing in Extra survivability is you have to account for PVP because as we have been shown Time and Time again they have to balance those PVP junkies. Giveing too much baked in survival to DK's means they have that much more survival against PVP opponents. That will cause people to cry and moan about Unkillable DK's which issues nerfs which pisses all us DK's off. The more likely things mastery will add is % damage, Hit, Expertise and mabey at the HIGHEST levels of investment will there be some damage reduction.

mistersix
03-03-2010, 05:49 PM
Agreed. And I understand that. However, tons of dps classes have their own survivability tools (ice block, vanish, etc.).

GravityDK
03-03-2010, 07:29 PM
While in absolute terms of damage taken this may be true, any time you parry, you're pretty much guaranteed 2 swings of relative safety.

Good point. I had been thinking about it in overly black & white terms, but like you say: if you dodge, you're in good shape, and if you don't, you only take 50% damage.

!3M
03-03-2010, 10:27 PM
They could all be designed around dps boosts (+hit, +exp, +rp gen, etc.) that could be useful for tanks and dpsers alike and stuff the tanking oriented elements directly into talents.

Or... they could put the % multipliers in the trees and just swap the stats that it affects depending on your 'stance' (e.g. in Def Stance you get a boost to mitigation, in Battle you get ArPen etc.) and only bake in stats for trees that have specific roles. Just some thoughts.

Proletaria
03-03-2010, 10:50 PM
Why would they rollover on one of their successes? The masteries wouldn't be that hard to tailor honestly. They could all be designed around dps boosts (+hit, +exp, +rp gen, etc.) that could be useful for tanks and dpsers alike and stuff the tanking oriented elements directly into talents. Or frankly, bake them in. Would it be so bad if a dpser had even more survivability? DPS flavors already have access and frequent use of things like unbreakable armor, AMS, etc already. It wouldn't be game-breaking in the slightest.

Clearly deathknights have been a success! We've seen extreme highs and lows in tanking and pvp while our dps has remained on the broken end of good for the duration (all the while wondering from spec to spec in that particular department). Perhaps dk dps has been a big hit, but tanking has been very much a bust. Blizzard caved a long time ago on the "cooldown tank" theory. They took the axe to our only and only unique buff (auras). They man-handed any attemps for us to gain parity with other tanks in utility since then and all the while they doled out block mechanics and ap debuffs to classes who were obstensibly fine without them (as we certainly must be, right, right?).

Anyone who rode the rollercoaster from 3.0 naxx to ICC hardmodes on a dk tank can tell you the same thing: three tanking trees is not worth the punishment we get for having the option. At this point i can only hope to have as narrow and confined a tanking spec as possible. Perhaps then we'll see some responses to the fact we represent the smallest minority of raid tanks by a wide margin.

Assuming parry is on a dr curve similar to present, we are going to have marginally more parry than a warrior or paladin, we will still have no block mechanic, and we'll dodge as much as any tank. At least in the case of druids they have savage defense to tweak and play around with to fix any problems of lacking mitigation. For us, they have nothing to change (apparently) but WOTN and our wonderfully dynamic frost presence. Oh man, I can't wait to count how many times FP gets buffed, nerfed, re-buffed, ad nauseum. It's gunna be just like old times! /giddy

Hammerfists
03-03-2010, 11:50 PM
I agree with you Proletaria that it would be to the benefit of DKs if they settled with one tanking tree. Blizz's philosophy has been that if we screw a spec up you always have the other 2 to fall back on. This is terrible for someone who doesnt like 1 of the 3 specs and somewhere down the road he has to either reroll or play the undesired spec. Having 3 tank specs is rough for the community because most people dont know the ins and outs of the three tank specs but just which is the "in" spec at the current time. If any class is going to have messed up mastery it will be DKs since each spec is designated to PVP, Tank and DPS. Good luck balancing around that criteria 3 times over.

GronkerLonker
03-04-2010, 02:52 AM
I know nothing about DKs, but couldn't the following system work:

Each talent is assigned to a role: tank / dpsmelee / dpsranged / dpsmagic / heal

Each point you put into a tank role talent grants you x% health, y% armor and z% of your prefered avoidance stat for n points of mastery you have.

Equivalent bonuses would begranted for the other roles, dpsmelee could provide hit, expertise and crit for example.

Thus you would have the roles untied from the trees, a tree beeing more of a play theme, while the specific talents are tied to the role they are designed for. That way you could also choose dps talents as tank to acquire say thread stats.

Don't know if that would again increase the complexity, but you could leave the mastery out of the whole talent stuff, it was just an idea how it could be used.

Proletaria
03-04-2010, 02:53 AM
I agree with you Proletaria that it would be to the benefit of DKs if they settled with one tanking tree. Blizz's philosophy has been that if we screw a spec up you always have the other 2 to fall back on. This is terrible for someone who doesnt like 1 of the 3 specs and somewhere down the road he has to either reroll or play the undesired spec. Having 3 tank specs is rough for the community because most people dont know the ins and outs of the three tank specs but just which is the "in" spec at the current time. If any class is going to have messed up mastery it will be DKs since each spec is designated to PVP, Tank and DPS. Good luck balancing around that criteria 3 times over.


Honestly, i'm quite familiar with all the specs tanking and otherwise. I've been playing the class long enough to not really discriminate against a spec because "it doesn't feel right," or some other nonsense excuse for being a snowflake with an off-beat spec. Anyhow, all tanget ranting aside, we do really need to be settled with one tanking tree if for no other reason than it keeps us from getting anything new for tanking talents without bugging pvp'ers or over-buffing our already high dps variants. Blood, Unholy, Frost, whatever they want to pick is fine by me. I really enjoy whichever tree allows me to do my job effectively. Blood seem like the obvious candidate at the moment, but who knows what will come out of cata. The wotn change seems a lot like a stinky bandage covering a frequently re-opened wound. Unless they actually thought a few frost dk's exploited necrotic plauge and chillblains to get early arthas kills was indicative that blood was lagging behind: I think they intended to just prop up what was left of the dk tanks and hope that some of us stick around to see what cata will bring.

Hammerfists
03-04-2010, 03:16 AM
I know nothing about DKs, but couldn't the following system work:

Each talent is assigned to a role: tank / dpsmelee / dpsranged / dpsmagic / heal

Each point you put into a tank role talent grants you x% health, y% armor and z% of your prefered avoidance stat for n points of mastery you have.

Equivalent bonuses would begranted for the other roles, dpsmelee could provide hit, expertise and crit for example.

Thus you would have the roles untied from the trees, a tree beeing more of a play theme, while the specific talents are tied to the role they are designed for. That way you could also choose dps talents as tank to acquire say thread stats.

Don't know if that would again increase the complexity, but you could leave the mastery out of the whole talent stuff, it was just an idea how it could be used.

The thing i dont like about this is that mastery is there to fill the gap of defense as well as boring stats ie +15% armor, +8% dodge and so on. Theres already a lot of overlap in a tree between dps and tank (roughly 6 points differential). Not only would it be hard to assign stats but you either get screwed on the mitigation or damage end compared to a pure class like a mage. Also mastery for tanks needs to apply some sort of "tank" stat to help push them further away from other plate and feral druids since stance changing is all it will take to be uncritable. This has been hush hush cause me thinks Blizz is stumped as well.

GronkerLonker
03-04-2010, 04:08 AM
Also mastery for tanks needs to apply some sort of "tank" stat to help push them further away from other plate and feral druids since stance changing is all it will take to be uncritable. This has been hush hush cause me thinks Blizz is stumped as well.

I thought to have covered this with health, armor and avoidance improvements through mastery.

But you're definitely right with the mastery issue providing boring stats. So lets take mastery out of the "Passive bonus"-equation, as I really don't think (and hope) it will be in there. It may be interesting to have mastery influence active talent mechanics like say reducing cooldowns or defining talent bonuses in the whole (Imp. Revenge: Increases the damage of revenge by 1% per mastery and hits 1 additional target for 1% of revenges damage per 2 mastery points). Though this would most likely require a hell of a good design, as it will get pretty hard to compare class performance based on adjustments to those active abilities.
On the other hand with the approach of "More procs less stats" Blizzard is already going down a road that leads to lesser theoretical comparison. That again could be a problem considering PvP, where it is of interest how classes fair against each other instead of the whole team doing the job. But then it's been that way all the time as in PvP utility is way more important than pure dps / survivability.

Hammerfists
03-04-2010, 04:29 AM
I dont think mastery will target abilities but be more of stats that define your class. Lets take melee plate for a second. Hunters need armor pen and shaman need expertise but they dont need the others stat (shaman can use armor pen but its their worst stat). So instead of creating 2 types of bracers you can use haste, crit, hit, or mastery on the item making it desirable to both classes. As for tanks they will feel the burn come Cataclysm since defense adds 7% miss chance, 7% dodge, 7% parry, and 7% shield block at current defense lvls. What allows Blizz to do here is to not have a boring stat 7% all across the board but create mastery that will either have you block more often or more damage, increase parry, increase dodge and the like to create a defense-lite stat catered to the design of the tank.

Mastery will be a stat that takes old stats and stats that made your class "unique" to gear requirements and try to smooth out gear choices for your armor type. Buffing a single spell will require more than the 3 stats they have so far going as mastery. Most trees right now have about 10 points invested in just flat damage increase may it be through crit, attack power, or whatever and this should be cleaned up through mastery as well. I just find single spells added to mastery might give mastery a better flavor but in the end not enticing enough to pursue mastery as a vaible stat since it would be kinda like what a glyph does now. Blizz is trying to homogenize gear more so there are no wasted gear drops. Love it or hate it is another topic all together.

mistersix
03-04-2010, 10:17 AM
Honestly, i'm quite familiar with all the specs tanking and otherwise. I've been playing the class long enough to not really discriminate against a spec because "it doesn't feel right," or some other nonsense excuse for being a snowflake with an off-beat spec. Anyhow, all tanget ranting aside, we do really need to be settled with one tanking tree if for no other reason than it keeps us from getting anything new for tanking talents without bugging pvp'ers or over-buffing our already high dps variants. Blood, Unholy, Frost, whatever they want to pick is fine by me. I really enjoy whichever tree allows me to do my job effectively. Blood seem like the obvious candidate at the moment, but who knows what will come out of cata. The wotn change seems a lot like a stinky bandage covering a frequently re-opened wound. Unless they actually thought a few frost dk's exploited necrotic plauge and chillblains to get early arthas kills was indicative that blood was lagging behind: I think they intended to just prop up what was left of the dk tanks and hope that some of us stick around to see what cata will bring.

The lion's share of DK players I talk to (and myself included) find the dps/tank from any tree the CORE defining trait of the class. Resolving to have a single tanking tree means you lose freedom of choice NO OTHER tanking class has (and frankly I'd kill for on my warrior). Having the option to swap your playstyle based on tanking variations is a strong way to maintain interest in the class. Blizz is willing to suffer pvp qqers in light of that.

Now you can argue that they've already effectively done what you're asking for anyway since blood is and has perennially been the tanking tree du jour. But that's a different tangent.

Molecule
03-04-2010, 10:41 AM
Anyone who rode the rollercoaster from 3.0 naxx to ICC hardmodes on a dk tank can tell you the same thing: three tanking trees is not worth the punishment we get for having the option. At this point i can only hope to have as narrow and confined a tanking spec as possible. Perhaps then we'll see some responses to the fact we represent the smallest minority of raid tanks by a wide margin.


Forgive me if I am misrepresenting your position, but from what I have gathered from your previous posts it seems like you feel like DKs' major weakness as a tanking class are:

- Lack of raid utility
- Lack of AP debuff specifically
- Lack of a block mechanic for add tanking

None of these things is much related to talents for other tanking classes though.

- Warrior tanks don't provide any talented raid utility at all (except insomuch as they can spend 5 points to buff their shouts). Paladins provide very minor utility (Does anyone ever say to themselves "man I wish we had a paladin tank so I could get 3% damage reduction and 6% more healing done"? I certainly don't). In fact, blood and unholy are much stronger than warriors or paladins in terms of the talented raid buffs they bring, and about on par with bears.

- Warriors and bears have baseline AP debuffs. They do have to put 5 points into talents to max it out, but there's no reason if you gave something similar to DKs that they couldn't tie the AP reduction into one of the 18 essential talent points that every DK tank takes anyway.

- Block is changing so significantly that I'm not even sure it's worth addressing here. Warriors and paladins both get talents to boost blocks, but next expansion block is going to be very similar conceptually (though distinct with regards to its specifics) to parry.

As far as your comment about roller coaster buffs and nerfs to Frost Presence, yes, the fact that we have three trees (hypothetically) that can tank means that there are fewer target abilities to change if you want to change DK tanking overall. But I don't really see how roller coaster changes to Frost Presence are fundamentally different to the roller coaster changes that paladins have seen with their effective health or warriors are seeing right now with revenge and devastate. Yes, we have one or two abilities that change a lot instead of several talents that individually change less frequently, but I'm not seeing how that's really a flaw in the system.

Arikak
03-04-2010, 10:42 PM
In regards to the potential for becoming "unhittable" fairly easily and massive mitigation/avoidance on tanks I think Blizzard will avoid this in one of 2 ways or maybe both:

1) Avoidance and Mitigation is on a much higher Rating --> % formula or there is a DR that hits much sooner.

2) Bosses, in essence, gain levels per tier of content. Or, at least are specifically coded for more hit and expertise with each new tier.

Option one seems less likely and less fun. It's no fun not seeing much in the way of appreciable number increases from new gear. Plus, Blizzard has hinted that you will need to continue to scale up your hit and expertise along with all your other stats. Making those stats always interesting on your gear, and easing their itemization woes. Overall keeping the game at a better balance. This leads me to think that option two seems highly likely.

Players having to scale up their hit and expertise for each tier of content implies that bosses are gaining levels. At least under the auspices of how we know the current combat system works, though things could be way different in Cata. If bosses gain levels it's probably assumable that they will inherit the higher chance to land hits that having a level advantage currently grants. Making avoidance and mitigation, while increasing numerically on the players stats pane, relatively constant throughout each new tier of content.

Acidbaron
03-05-2010, 06:05 AM
Lack of block only really showed on Anub'arak heroic, where DK were the least favorite tank, MT and OT. What really made Death knight tanks the least favorite picks, not saying you couldn't work around it.

And then there was the issue of blizzard trying to make every tree work with every possible combination and aspect of the game, fortunately they moved away from that.

Kahmal
03-05-2010, 11:03 PM
I'll miss avoidance tanking Heroics, but this should mean we'll never see another dodge debuff...

Proletaria
03-07-2010, 02:14 AM
Forgive me if I am misrepresenting your position, but from what I have gathered from your previous posts it seems like you feel like DKs' major weakness as a tanking class are:

- Lack of raid utility
- Lack of AP debuff specifically
- Lack of a block mechanic for add tanking

None of these things is much related to talents for other tanking classes though.

- Warrior tanks don't provide any talented raid utility at all (except insomuch as they can spend 5 points to buff their shouts). Paladins provide very minor utility (Does anyone ever say to themselves "man I wish we had a paladin tank so I could get 3% damage reduction and 6% more healing done"? I certainly don't). In fact, blood and unholy are much stronger than warriors or paladins in terms of the talented raid buffs they bring, and about on par with bears.

- Warriors and bears have baseline AP debuffs. They do have to put 5 points into talents to max it out, but there's no reason if you gave something similar to DKs that they couldn't tie the AP reduction into one of the 18 essential talent points that every DK tank takes anyway.

- Block is changing so significantly that I'm not even sure it's worth addressing here. Warriors and paladins both get talents to boost blocks, but next expansion block is going to be very similar conceptually (though distinct with regards to its specifics) to parry.

As far as your comment about roller coaster buffs and nerfs to Frost Presence, yes, the fact that we have three trees (hypothetically) that can tank means that there are fewer target abilities to change if you want to change DK tanking overall. But I don't really see how roller coaster changes to Frost Presence are fundamentally different to the roller coaster changes that paladins have seen with their effective health or warriors are seeing right now with revenge and devastate. Yes, we have one or two abilities that change a lot instead of several talents that individually change less frequently, but I'm not seeing how that's really a flaw in the system.

You aren't making sense. If you're finding yourself going "man i wish i had a blood dk." You should get an enhancement shaman who covers literally every buff we bring, PLUS icy talons, plus lust, and has superior uptime and effect on almost all of these things. Which dps class can provide other tank's buffs without a significant dps loss? Rogues can expose armor, but that is a serious hit to their dps. No dps can provide blessing of sanc. Bears provide leader of the pack (only replaced by a feral cat, who is usually doubles as the bear), all manner of bleed debuffs (given the state of arms war dps, i'd say it's a safe bet most raids want a bear providing this). The list goes on. Literally nothing a dk can bring cannot be better applied by a dps (specifically, and enhance shaman). And have i ever been in a situation where i wanted blessing of sanc?? You bet your ass i have! Who the heck wouldn't want 3% dr over the top of what is essentially kings? You'd be crazy not to want it. Having dps provide the ap debuff for a tank is a chore in 25mans and a down-right nasty thing in 10mans when the content is difficult.

Imagine for a moment that you're tanking arthas 10m hardmode (i was tonight).

Now imagine you rely on a warlock for your ap debuff. He dies somehow, and you are now taking somewhere in the ballpark of 8-10k more damage per swing from arthas while the rest of the raid is busy killing spirits.

Is that "much related to tanking" ? I think so.

You can throw the block thing out the window in cata assuming blizzard (by no small miracle) managed to even out damage intake by actually allowing us to have significantly more parry than the other tanks (at the moment we have almost the exact same amount because our DR curve is so accellerated by forceful deflection). Long story short: you're either grossly underestimate what most raids take for granted (the buffs, debuffs, and utility brought by their tanks) or you just don't understand who is best to apply them. But, by all means, don't believe me. Take a good hard look at any guild worth it's salt right now. Check their roster, watch their videos, and hell, check their recruitment thread.

If Deathknights are to much "stronger" than warriors and paladins at ANYTHING, ANYTHING AT ALL, then why are they nearly absent from the realm of progression? We saw a mass exodus from the class in 3.2. Wouldn't it stand to reason these guys want dk's back in lieu of the wotn and icy touch buff?

I can tell you right now, they have weighed the options, and they're sticking with bears, warriors, and paladins and it's not some kind of cosmic coincidence: it is because they understand there is a serious deficit with deathknights. One that has not been noticed yet by the devs.

Güth
03-07-2010, 07:50 PM
One that has not been noticed yet by the devs.

I'm not going to dispute any of above, except this part. I'm 100% sure they've noticed, it's not something they're going to hotfix over night though. Devs noticed bears and paladins were only used for a few gimmick fights in BC for the most part, or just Hyjal trash (more so paladins than bears) and almost never got to actually face a raid boss. DKs seem to be in the same sort of situation from what I gathered from your post. (I don't keep up with DK stuff, so honestly I wouldn't know myself)

This is apparent because of the major class ability addtions/changes in Wrath and to a lesser extent shortly before Wrath (removal of Crushing Blows) that made them (bears/paladins) more acceptable main tanks. I know this seems very bad practice, but they're more than likely aware and just not in that much of a rush to change things currently, with Cata on the horizon and all the cash/time/manpower they're putting into that.

KnThrak
03-08-2010, 12:02 AM
If Deathknights are to much "stronger" than warriors and paladins at ANYTHING, ANYTHING AT ALL, then why are they nearly absent from the realm of progression? We saw a mass exodus from the class in 3.2. Wouldn't it stand to reason these guys want dk's back in lieu of the wotn and icy touch buff?

Really?
After having Warriors be the most common progression tank back when everyone was agreeing perfectly on them being too weak?

Social economics ingame don't actually reflect mathmatical balance. They at times shift due to FOTM-crying, but that's about it. People don't give up their (main) char on a whim, but tons of tanks rerolled DK in the early days because they were "so imba" (see FOTM above). Come 3.2, ofc they all went back to their "good ol' actual char", since now DKs no longer proved to be an automatic gain, and why prefer your alt over your main if the main is again wanted in raids?

For progression guilds this is even more extreme. Since they overfocus certain characters any tank who is familiar with his old class will only go DK as a last resort when the balance allows no other option. As soon as the balance is "only slightly in favour" of DKs, or not at all, they'll go back to their mains to continue working on them since they need to stay in the loop.


I readily agree DK's unique strengths aren't being played on much in the current content (except maybe Rotface, and that's one out of 14 encounters), but that doesn't mean the strengths don't exist. It's like ranged DPS complaining melee are overpowered, when the issue is that in ICC the ranged have to handle all the abilities while for the melee the fights are tank&spank. Correct assessment of symptom, wrong assessment what's the cause.
The AP debuff issue I'll just wave the flag and accept that apparently other 10man setups readily have no AP debuffers, I just never had the issue myself in all the dozens of dozens of 10mans I lead. Without ever thinking about it.

Thorngrip
03-08-2010, 05:22 AM
You aren't making sense. If you're finding yourself going "man i wish i had a blood dk." You should get an enhancement shaman who covers literally every buff we bring, PLUS icy talons, plus lust, and has superior uptime and effect on almost all of these things. Which dps class can provide other tank's buffs without a significant dps loss? Rogues can expose armor, but that is a serious hit to their dps. No dps can provide blessing of sanc. Bears provide leader of the pack (only replaced by a feral cat, who is usually doubles as the bear), all manner of bleed debuffs (given the state of arms war dps, i'd say it's a safe bet most raids want a bear providing this). The list goes on. Literally nothing a dk can bring cannot be better applied by a dps (specifically, and enhance shaman). And have i ever been in a situation where i wanted blessing of sanc?? You bet your ass i have! Who the heck wouldn't want 3% dr over the top of what is essentially kings? You'd be crazy not to want it. Having dps provide the ap debuff for a tank is a chore in 25mans and a down-right nasty thing in 10mans when the content is difficult.

Imagine for a moment that you're tanking arthas 10m hardmode (i was tonight).

Now imagine you rely on a warlock for your ap debuff. He dies somehow, and you are now taking somewhere in the ballpark of 8-10k more damage per swing from arthas while the rest of the raid is busy killing spirits.

Without taking any special stand on what you're saying about death knights, I'd just like to correct some of your statements about the raid buffs / debuffs:

* While enhancement shamans provide a particularly juicy package of buffs, Icy Talons is slightly preferable to Imp Windfury because of the 100 yd radius vs 40 yd radius of the totem; shamans can also fail to move their totem in fights where it's needed, for various reasons (e.g. being bad and not caring).

* Leader of the Pack is not the only 5% melee crit aura - fury warriors bring the same through Rampage (only without the minor healing proc that ferals can spec into).

* Although warrior tanks are the nicest source of 20% armor reduction, a dps warrior can keep sunders on a boss at a very minimal dps loss. There are also occasions where a quick 1-2 point Expose Armor is actually the best source - on any low hp target that gets burnt down fast, e.g. Yogg Saron tentacles or the slime/gas mobs on Putricide.

* Blessing of sanctuary's 3% damage reduction is also provided by a discipline priest (and a prot warrior's Vigilance for that matter). The raid buff appeal of prot paladins is imo largely that they're paladins, with all the buffs and tools that class brings.

* The AP debuff issue can be awkward, although that can be nicely solved by bringing a ret paladin (most will and should spec into Vindication). Your example about the warlock dying is false because Curse of Weakness lasts 5 minutes on a PvE mob and will remain on the boss even if the lock dies.

In conclusion, if you're arguing that dk's "suck" partly because they don't have appealing enough raid buffs to bring... then I strongly disagree. Yes, enhancement shamans and retri paladins are exceptionally juicy when it comes to buffs, but that's hardly what we should be comparing every class and spec to. Every spec of death knights bring some nice, important buffs, that I personally often find myself not getting anywhere else (particularly in 10 man).

mistersix
03-08-2010, 09:05 AM
I've even seen many prot pallies spec into vindication.
Blood DKs are often the de facto source of the 10% ap buff in my 10s/25s.

kring
03-09-2010, 12:53 AM
Your example about the warlock dying is false because Curse of Weakness lasts 5 minutes on a PvE mob and will remain on the boss even if the lock dies.

It's only 2 minutes for Curse of Weakness. Curse of Elements is the only 5 minutes curse.

KnThrak
03-09-2010, 07:05 AM
Yeah but now we're already talking finicky details. If the Prot Pally dies, there's no more source of AP Debuff either, tuhdaaaah.

Doesn't matter. 12 specs of which 3 are tanks and 6 are all three specs each of two extremely common ranged DPS classes supply AP debuff. If the supplier dies, a finite amount of time later the debuff dissipates - Warlocks are best here due to up to 2 minutes retention.

Point would much more be that the situation is crudely constructed. "If the Warlock dies"... if he dies:
a) He gets a Crezz
b) The fight is so close to finish that CoW doesn't drop anyways.
c) There is a secondary AP debuffer (12 out of 30 specs, statistically 3 of the 7 nonhealers bring that debuff!).
d) None of these three apply, you can finish the fight perfectly without the Warlock therefor indicating that you overgear the fight so much that it actually doesn't matter, AP Debuff or not.
e) Or ofc... you wipe, if it's not due to lack of AP Debuff 1~120 seconds later then due to lack of DPS.


I find (d) rather unlikely, so let's stick to the other 4.

In the situation described, the soon-dissipating AP Debuff is very likely at the back of your worry-list. It is like saying that if all healers are dead, no one can heal the lifetapping Warlock. While that is a problem in itself, it is hardly what the raid will be thinking about that moment. ;)

mistersix
03-09-2010, 09:23 AM
Yeah but now we're already talking finicky details. If the Prot Pally dies, there's no more source of AP Debuff either, tuhdaaaah.

To be fair, if your tank(s) die you've got bigger worries to consider than the ap debuff. :P

Molecule
03-09-2010, 10:29 AM
You aren't making sense. If you're finding yourself going "man i wish i had a blood dk." You should get an enhancement shaman who covers literally every buff we bring, PLUS icy talons, plus lust, and has superior uptime and effect on almost all of these things. Which dps class can provide other tank's buffs without a significant dps loss? Rogues can expose armor, but that is a serious hit to their dps. No dps can provide blessing of sanc. Bears provide leader of the pack (only replaced by a feral cat, who is usually doubles as the bear), all manner of bleed debuffs (given the state of arms war dps, i'd say it's a safe bet most raids want a bear providing this). The list goes on. Literally nothing a dk can bring cannot be better applied by a dps (specifically, and enhance shaman). And have i ever been in a situation where i wanted blessing of sanc?? You bet your ass i have! Who the heck wouldn't want 3% dr over the top of what is essentially kings? You'd be crazy not to want it. Having dps provide the ap debuff for a tank is a chore in 25mans and a down-right nasty thing in 10mans when the content is difficult.

Imagine for a moment that you're tanking arthas 10m hardmode (i was tonight).

Now imagine you rely on a warlock for your ap debuff. He dies somehow, and you are now taking somewhere in the ballpark of 8-10k more damage per swing from arthas while the rest of the raid is busy killing spirits.

Is that "much related to tanking" ? I think so.

You can throw the block thing out the window in cata assuming blizzard (by no small miracle) managed to even out damage intake by actually allowing us to have significantly more parry than the other tanks (at the moment we have almost the exact same amount because our DR curve is so accellerated by forceful deflection). Long story short: you're either grossly underestimate what most raids take for granted (the buffs, debuffs, and utility brought by their tanks) or you just don't understand who is best to apply them. But, by all means, don't believe me. Take a good hard look at any guild worth it's salt right now. Check their roster, watch their videos, and hell, check their recruitment thread.

If Deathknights are to much "stronger" than warriors and paladins at ANYTHING, ANYTHING AT ALL, then why are they nearly absent from the realm of progression? We saw a mass exodus from the class in 3.2. Wouldn't it stand to reason these guys want dk's back in lieu of the wotn and icy touch buff?

I can tell you right now, they have weighed the options, and they're sticking with bears, warriors, and paladins and it's not some kind of cosmic coincidence: it is because they understand there is a serious deficit with deathknights. One that has not been noticed yet by the devs.

I'm not saying "man I wish I had a Blood DK". I'm saying I don't consider the utility any tanking class brings to be a primary draw (and specifically the utility from talent trees). Leader of the pack is the closest thing to it (although it's redundant with Rampage except in the rare situations like Anub H where the self heal is something relevant). The bleed increase is basically garbage, especially in 10 man where you're likely to have zero to one people that can make use of it (although it will perhaps improve a bit in 3.3.3 with mutilate rogues using rupture). Neither of them is stronger than Ebon Plague for certain, and it's very likely neither of them is stronger than Abomination's Might either. You can say "bring an enhancement shaman and a warlock to provide those" but I could just as easily say "bring a fury warrior to provide 5% crit and a disc priest to provide 3% damage reduction".

And it's not whether it's related to tanking. It's whether it's related to talents. I am not making an argument here about death knight tanks as a whole, because it's obvious I'm not going to convince you. What I am saying is that all of the things you assert are problems with the class (lack of an AP debuff, lack of utility, lack of a block mechanic) are not deficiencies with the 3 tree system. Warriors and bears don't get the AP debuff with talents. Warriors don't get sunder armor from talents. So I don't get the connection to what you claim is wrong with DK tanks and the way DK talent trees are set up.

leebingate
03-15-2010, 05:31 PM
The only issue I see is if they let Parry/Block/Dodge scale up too quickly. At our current avoidance levels in game, it would be very nearly possible to never take a full hit. If all incoming attacks were either blocked parried or dodged, then all incoming attacks would have to hit twice as hard, which could be a very painful barrier to entry for some tanks.

Hammerfists
03-15-2010, 06:14 PM
Part of the problem with the scaling now a days is that blizz never had hardmodes in mind when they shipped Wrath. This was a byproduct of Naxx being easy for some and challenging for others. If they stick with the current model of 10 normal/hard 25 normal/hard they should be able to avoid this from happening again (would be naive of me to think also that Cataclysm wont evolve in its own way when it goes live so anything is possible). With Defense being removed we'll lose a good amount of mitigation so that solves one of the problems. Mastery will give us bonus stam to pull ahead of dps, damage reduction which i assume is being pulled out of the talents and rolled into mastery, and one unique form of mitigation (like pallies will be blocks more often or the like). Either way this wont be an issue for Cataclysm till roughly a year into it.

PS you might want to drop that sig i dont think its kosher to be advertising pirate sites here.