I just tossed this into a thread on the official forums, but it's an idea I'd like to see knowledgeable people look at/take apart (if need be) and that obviously excludes the official forums
My idea would be to remove Imp Disarm (it's not really used in PVE and would help with the "prot warriors control PVP encounters too much" problem) and replace it with a prot version of Imp Rend.
The Imp Rend in this case would place a 20 second debuff on the target that increases the non-critical damage the warrior does to the target by x% (I was thinking 10-15%, but better theorycrafters than I should look at what is needed to get us where we need to be).
This would have essentially no effect on PVP burst damage, and would even make PVE DPS gear a bit less attractive to prot PVPers (since the higher crit rating would bring a smaller DPS upgrade than previously).
Of course in practive you actually have to find time to apply rend, which in PVE won't be your first hit as it has low inherent threat. You also wouldn't use it in AOE tank situations (where our DPS actually holds up pretty well). It would just be on single target fights where you can
Voila, you have a nice buff to sustained PVE DPS that does nothing to help prot PVP. What needs to be worked out is A) have I missed something really stupid? B) what percent increase damage to non-crits should it do? and C) how long should the debuff be up before you need to refresh it (not so short that we have a hard time fitting it into our already crowded rotations, but not so long that we can do it near the beginning of a boss fight and forget about it either.
Finally, it can't really be called Imp Rending, as that's already in the Arms tree, so if you like the idea...what's a good name? Maybe Primal Rending or something. Thanks in advance for any thoughts or calculations!
I don't really see if discouraging PvE DPS gear at all. A Crit will still hit way harder than a hit, and you have the advantage that your super pumped up (because you're in DPS gear) non-crit damage is applying 15-20% more pressure to the target. Unless I missed something o:
For normal prot PVP there is also a tradeoff between survivability and DPS...this would make the survivability option a tad more viable in that the DPS delta would be a bit smaller. You are right of course that those eschewing all tank gear for BiS DPS gear are not going to be disuaded...but their burst isn't going to be increased either. And if the DR on SS goes in, they will likely see similar sustained DPS numbers but lower burst ones.
I'm not trying to fix PVP with this suggestion (I'm not even sure how broken it is) but rather trying to help PVE DPS at the same time as considering one nerf to PVP.
I presume that some form of PVP nerf to Warbringer is inevitable, and a nerf to SS by increasing it's DR seems sadly likely, so I was hoping we could work a better tradeoff into the mix.
Ok, taking the math into my own hands (dangerous, I know). For a concrete example I'll be taking this from my guild's most recent takedown of Saurfang. I chose it because there is little movement as a tank, although because A) I out threat my druid offtank (while doing less DPS...) and B) compound this by putting vigilance on him for infinite taunts in case of taunt misses, I actually don't come pull anything like my max DPS, as I always refresh all shouts/TC/etc and stop HS for 10 seconds or so after he taunts off me.
While this doesn't demonstrate the maximum DPS rotation, it's better than most of the other encounters IMO (that is, I spend more time hitting one target) (If you want to imagine this on a target dummy, increase the numbers by 10-15%)
My basic methodology was to look at each ability in the log separately, subtract the amount of damage done by critical hits (which had to be calculated by taking #crits x avg. crit hit = crit damage) and then buffing the remaining damage by 15% (i.e. x 1.15). Adding the crits back in shows what each ability would have done on that fight, and lets you compare how much of a buff is done per ability. So my worksheet looks like this:
Ability Name Total Dmg - Crit Dmg = Non Crit Dmg x 1.15 + crits = New Total (percent increase)
From this sample it's clear that bursty prot abilities (those with a higher crit chance) get a smaller percent boost than abilities with a low instrinsic crit chance (i.e. while white hits did less damage than heroic strike, the 1.15 damage modifier was applied to a larger absolute number, so it was buffed by almost 12%). Also, and obviously, it isn't increasing the damage done by crits, which is apparently where we get into trouble in PVP.
Obviously this assumes 100% up time of the proposed Prot Rend debuff (which wouldn't really happen, and which would be almost useless in AOE situations). When applied to this specific case it's just under a 10% buff to overall damage, which means that ideally the 1,716 DPS I pulled (that's what I get for having to use vigilance rather than a taunt glyph) is buffed to a less-than amazing 1,886 DPS.
That's before the incoming SS nerf via increased DR, which may decrease our overall DPS by 2-5% (going from other peoples calculations). Given that we could almost certainly crank up the rend debuff to 20 or even 25% (which would amount to 11-13% buff prior to the SS nerf) and still be at best hitting the average tank DPS.
Now, I'm not sure it's a good idea to make all of the DPS up in this way. Buffing the damage modifier on Damage Shield would be a good way to also increase sustained DPS (as well as help with AOE threat). Increasing the damage on Thunderclap might be another way (thought NOT decreasing the cooldown...that would make it too good in both PVP and PVE I suspect).
Whether the prot rend idea specifically appeals to you, I think some manner of increasing non-crit damage (especially on single targets) is the best way to boost our DPS while avoiding PVP issues, and will likely have to be conceptually incorporated into our DPS if we're ever going to catch pally and druid tank DPS in Wrath.
I had my first experience of playing against a good prot warrior in the arena yesterday while on my rogue. I have to say I have a much better understanding of the whine about prot pvp now. There is nothing I could have done to stand a chance of killing that warrior, and probably very little I could have done to his prot/holy paladin healer.
Imp disarm had nothing to do with it. It was all about the damage that he could put out, combined with the defensive abilities, reflective damage (only especially relevant against rogues), utility (stuns/interrupts) and ridiculous mobility.
My best suggestion now is that they make more abilities linked to defense. They did it for IBF and AD and it was relatively effective. The problem with warriors is that it would take significantly more than adjusting one ability (like shield slam) to really fix this trend.
Note that the fact that warriors are FOTM now is just the latest in the general trend of tank specs making it into arena. Frost Presence DKs, Prot paladin healers, Prot-ribution.. It's all rather cheesy and lame, but that won't stop people doing it if they can win with it. I hope for cataclysm, they put some fundamental scalar elements in place to distinguish pve/pvp