On August 22 Blizzard announced Feral druids were receiving a hot fix designed to bring their damage up to par with the other DPS specs. The community at-large believed the changes were insufficient, and it looks like Blizzard agrees.
Today Blizzard announced additional changes will be coming to Feral druids this week. The previous buffs increased Brutal Slash’s damage by 20%, while Swipe and Thrash both received a 15% damage increase. Those changes aren’t going anywhere, druids are simply getting more improvements:
- Energy regeneration rate increased by 10%
- Rip damage increased by 15%
- Berserk duration increased from 15 to 20 sec
- Brutal Slash cost reduced from 30 to 25 energy
- Swipe cost reduced from 40 to 35 energy
- Thrash cost reduced by from 45 to 40 energy, and damage reduced proportionally
- The spec’s hidden 50% increase to Haste secondary stat value reduced to 25%.
While the changes are significant, Blizzard is by no means done with Feral. They’re keeping a close eye on them and have a number of changes they’re talking about for future patches. Such as:
- Better consolidate Energy-increasing and heavy pacing-impacting talents into the same row, and reduce the pacing impact that a single talent hasThe goal is to reduce the Energy/pacing swing between different talent builds, which allows us to bring up the bottom without letting the highest Energy/pacing talent build with endgame/late expansion gear to get near overflow range
- Better separate Single Target talents and Multitarget Talents into their own rowsThis is slightly more of a challenge on Druid specs than most specs, due to Druids having only 4 throughput talent rows (compared to most specs having 5), but it’s a goal we have for all specs.
- Provide better AOE talent optionsEchoing suggestions – a combo-point spender is a possible direction. There may be an additional opportunity to do something with Thrash here. It functions as an enabler, but could be doing even more for the spec.
- Bloodtalons – Bloodtalons does a great job at adding complexity to the rotation, but we’re not sure the method in which it does that is right for the spec long-term. Bloodtalons asks you to frequently cast a Regrowth in exchange for its buff, which in a group/raid, means either you’re required to keep an eye on group/raid frames (which is a lot to ask) or you make a macro to mindlessly cast Regrowth on yourself (which isn’t great).
- Remove the spec’s bonus to Haste secondary stat (currently on live 50%, soon to be 25%) entirely. Re-adjust Energy/pacing to compensate.Mentioned above, but now that Bleeds scale with Haste, it’s both no longer needed to make Haste a relevant stat for Feral, and is also contributing to expansion-wide scaling issues.
- Remove cat form’s 40% bonus to auto-attack damage.This contributes to feedback that abilities don’t hit hard enough and have low Energy to damage conversion ratios.
Blizzard is observing overall class tuning and has told fans to expect a “general tuning pass” later next week.