From the Devs Today I think:
The problem with Warbringer
The problem with the PvP side of Warbringer is that when you consider prot warrior versus mage (just as an example), there was nothing a mage could do to a well versed warrior. The warrior carries a lot of stuns, silences, and then any attempt to root him is broken by multiple abilities. So then the warrior's teammate (like a hunter) is just doing tons of damage while the target has no defenses.
For the other side of this change, we certainly don't design 5-player or raid content with the assumption that the tank has Warbringer (or a way out of snares and roots in general). We understand that it can be a big help in specific situations but we don't feel it's the only option in any PvE circumstances. (Source)
Patch 3.3.x nerfs for prot warriors
Let's look first at the Warbringer change.
Will it nerf them for PvP? Yes. Aside from stuns and Dismantle, rooting or snaring the Prot warrior is the major way to keep him off of you. Considering all of the stuns and silences that Prot has, when they can also jump out of every Frost Nova with Warbringer, then there's not much in the way of skill a mage can employ to stay alive. They just get countered in every way.
Will it nerf them for PvE? Yes, but really slightly. I'm not sure I can ever remember a case in my WoW-playing history where my warrior or some other tank caused a wipe because of a root, so even if it did happen, it can't happen that much or be that memorable. Warriors certainly won't get sat because of some new Achilles' heel and we don't design encounters around the assumption that tanks can't be rooted. The important part of Warbringer from a PvE perspective, removing the stance restrictions, is still intact.
Now the damage change. As Bornakk posted recently, what we essentially did was look at some of the successful Prot PvP characters and compare them to some of the Prot tanks out there. We nerfed the block conversion to Shield Slam damage so that it would hit the PvP guy without really hitting the PvE guy. (The PvP warriors aren't stacking a ton of Shield Block Value, but they do have a lot of Strength which also converts to block for purposes of making Shield Slam hit harder -- many of these guys are wearing PvE dps plate.)
Will it nerf them for PvP? Yes. We want Prot to be able to hit reasonably hard, but they also need to pay some price for their massive survivability. We thought the Warbringer change alone would nerf the warriors vs. e.g. mages but wouldn't control their damage. Those big Shield Slam crits should go down a lot.
Will it nerf them for PvE? Probably not, or at least not much. If you tank with a lot of Strength or SBV, you might see your Shield Slams go down, but that's why we buffed the threat of Shield Slam to compensate.
Again, keep the changes in perspective. We want Prot to be PvP viable. We don't want Prot warriors to dominate PvP or have everyone feel like they need one for their team. Likewise, we want Prot to do higher damage than the almost trivial damage that they did in BC. But that doesn't mean they need to be competitive with the dps while they're tanking.
That's fairly specious reasoning, probably best left to lawyers if you want to infer that much from something that says nothing about tank vs. tank DPS comparisons.
we want Prot to do higher damage than the almost trivial damage that they did in BC. But that doesn't mean they need to be competitive with the dps while they're tanking.
If you read that part a couple of times and think of the nerfs I can only come up with 2 logical conclusions;
1) They only care about tank TPS balance.
2) Whenever there is no interference with 1 and they cba to, they'll add more DPS instead of innate threat.
If they really wanted us to do more DPS, they'ld thought of making HS & Revenge just do more damage instead of threat. Those 2 to pure damage would be a nice boost already.
To answer the question in the topic, yes, we do know what the nerf to warbringer will be
We do not exactly know what they've done to shield slam mechanics. It's been described but not (afaik) detailed in numbers.In the next content patch the current plan is to change Warbringer a bit so that it no longer allows Charge and Intercept to break roots or snares but Intervene would remain unaffected.
I'd say they balance purely around threat, considering GC's post here:
World of Warcraft - English (NA) Forums -> On Prot Wars: The Problem is Not Warbringer
His response was to someone talking about shield slam's inherent threat. Also, I suspect they shy away from just adding more DPS to the prot tree because then you get strange situations where the scaling given to tanks to let them do reasonable DPS means they do far too much damage in DPS gear whilst retaining all of the survivability and control/mobility tank talents grant. Prot warriors are the most dangerous case for this because of multiplier effects like shield block, sunders and the ability to pop recklessness.We don't want tanks doing as much damage as dps classes (because you should have to give up something for your ability to survive) but we do want tanks to generate a ton of threat. There isn't much of a way to make that math work without threat multipliers.
In the end, it seems to come down to: Do you want to lose class flavour to get better DPS? The answer is almost certainly not to be found in making horrible fudgey mechanics like "shield slam does not damage player targets" or similar ideas, and thus we enter the higher conundrum that blizzard is working with. I think the innate threat mechanics are not a perfect solution, but they're certainly more pleasant than ripping apart big chunks of class mechanics during the final raid tier of an expansion. I suspect these issues will be resolved in Cataclysm when DPS and healers have a lot more health compared to now and PVP can be slowed down (and this higher tank DPS wont be as much of a problem).
Last edited by Maelstrom; 01-11-2010 at 11:26 AM. Reason: Added in conclusion
The problem of course is that if protection warrior dps gets lowered much more, we could start finding ourselves looking at the short end of the roster stick for hardmode type fights with really tight enrage timers, because we already typically do less damage while tanking than other tanks.
I mean, I'm not a hardmode raider, so it isn't really any skin off my back, but even a 500 dps difference between tanking choices can really matter in that sort of scenario.
Which is why they should go ahead and nerf SS's burst potential via whatever cap or rating they have in mind but take off the 5% dmg penalty to d-stance. Boom - we do the same (more probably) dps and pvp balance is unaffected.
And remember that prot pvpers don't burst out of d-stance. They burst out of battle stance to get closer to the ArP cap.
Well, the warbringer change won't affect me much. Which is good, in my book protection warrior mobility paired with a well rounded toolkit really is all we have. After all, we're the jack of all trades tank.
I'm more worried about the dps nerf. But let's see what they come up with.
My lack of proper signature actually is a proud minimalistic stand
As a prot warrior who does hard modes I'm not worried about losing my raid spot because of a DPS nerf due to the changes, but I am rather irate with the changes they are proposing.
One of the key strengths for us that I see, is as someone mentioned, our mobility. I gladly take all add tanking over our bear tank simply because I have such a reliable way to peel off and pick up anything that is coming in to the raid. Add to the ability of being able to break roots/snares to get someone + chain taunts means you can pretty much ensure adds of any kind are always controlled. The changes to warbringer also will impact greatly how I do heroics, and my likely hood of doing heroics other than just the daily. I take advantage of it on a regular basis to chain pull 3-4 packs at once, and with the changes it's doubtful I will be able to pull at the same frenzy/pace and it is, quite honestly, the only way I can make heroics entertaining for me.
Nerfing our DPS via the shield slam nerf is really going to suck, and I hate the fact already that I'm a large margin behind the other blends of tanks out there. It's not going to cost me a raid spot in hard modes, because quite honestly it's the player that brings the game when it comes to tanking, but it will just make things a little more difficult for us in downing stuff in tight timers.
You do realize when it comes to tanking most instances snares or roorts are not that common for us to deal with right? This change will not affect the use of the charge or intercept while in combat and in any stance. Last time I chained pulled through an instances I hardly got snared or rooted from a mob and I could keep the fast pace.
I do agree heavily this non sense that our dps while tanking is the lowest amongst other tanks we never said we wanted to do as much dps as a full time dps needs to stop. Not to stay we should rule the tanks but we should at least do the same DPS as them. The 5% off our stance would be a good thing but more would still be needed.
Baking in threat to make up the dps lost is just sad to me. Yah i got this huge lead on threat but who is even close to me? I would rather lose our "baked in threat making" some for a dps increase because baked in threat doesn't scale well (i.e. doesn't scale at all). This way we still would make the same threat but give us more dps overall and would scale.
So far though their has been so many ideas tossed around for this issue its hard to find the right balance. I forget where I read it on here but druids or dk's get some scaling with defense gear. Wouldn't it be nice to say our enrage affect while wearing defense gear would do more damage with wearing it then not wearing it. Have a set % ratio to defense to dmg increase so it would scale with more defense and the better gear you actually got. So instead of 10% for pvp you may have 0% dmg increase for pvp without defense gear but maybe 10-30% for pve content.
This would require your defense rating to be higher then your base at lvl your lvl. The only issue here is in the expaction they are removing defense rating so it would be a short term fix which could work for them. We get more dmg in PvE content and they get to nerf the pvp prot warriors at the same time. So in short they need to look at the whole problem instead of a single part of the issue.
Dont mind the warbringer nerf in the slightest, even makes sense to me.
The dps lost from shield slam will upset me. I like to solo stuff and do my own thing. Sure in a raid environment the dps loss isn't going to hurt much so long as threat is maintained, but that's not the point.
Why are Prot wars allways the bastard child of Pally and DK tanks. I like to solo the trash and 6/8 bosses in MC every week for rep, bindings and ignots. This is painful enough at the moment even using a dps tanking set. Pallies and DK's could probably just waltz through it.
I don't pvp as prot, only pvp as arms, even though my tank gear is a lot better than my pvp gear.
Anyhow, aside from the fact your example (farming bindings, awsome) is just about as far from reasonable as you can get for a raid-tanking comparison, you seem to have missed the dk changes since patch 3.1.
I invite you to check patch notes, and to stop lumping us in with obviously over-tuned paladins. Deathknights are only as-good, if not worse off than warriors in the present content.