Moonkin & Haste: The wrath problem

Okay, so for the last couple days, I’ve been following Murmur’s post in the damage dealing forum about haste & wrath.

The problem has a couple layers:

  • Wrath has a short cast time
  • The global cool down (GCD) can’t go below 1 second
  • Wrath is able to have a cast time below 1 second with haste (from gear, talents, buffs).
  • Having a cast time below the GCD is bad.
  • Eclipse makes us have to cast wrath even if we don’t want to
  • So, we gear for less haste to not have as bad GCD clipping problems
  • but then we have to avoid haste on our gear.

The best fix for this problem, after reading everyone’s feedback from that thread would be to change Nature’s Grace to just give less haste, so that we have a higher haste cap before Wrath clips the GCD. However, we can’t change Nature’s Grace in patch 3.3 for obvious reasons, as Ghostcrawler points out:

I agree Nature’s Grace is a big part of the problem here. We changed Gift of the Earth Mother for pretty similar reasons. However, Nature’s Grace is a Really Big Deal. We honestly keep talking about changing it, but we’re also paranoid about screwing it up because Balance dps is dependent on it. NG is probably an overbudget talent, but in this case if we nerfed iit, we’d have to mess with Balance in a lot of other areas to compensate. We’ll almost certainly do it at some point, but I worry about messing with it for 3.3.

Nature’s Grace is a talent that all caster druids (should) pick up: For PvP, PvE, tree healing, & moonkin damage dealing. It would hurt all these aspects of the game to just nerf Nature’s Grace. I also don’t think resto could handle a NG and GotEM nerf in the same patch without really having problems.

So, what are the other options?

  • Lowering the global cooldown below a second

This is a terrible idea for a lot of reasons, but the biggest one being that it takes time for human beings to react to stimuli presented on the computer screen, and the internet/server latency combined with human reaction times makes lowing the GCD below a second a horrible idea, since people with quick RT’s and lower latency would be the only people who really benefited from this.  You don’t want to end up with a 500 millisecond Global cooldown, but 800 millisecond internet latency. This would be a horrible precedent to set, and wouldn’t really “fix” the problem.

  • Increasing wrath’s cast time directly

This would ruin wrath for PvP, since PvP relies on the short cast time for wrath. So, we can’t nerf PvP for PvE in patch 3.3 for an already suffering spec. This is why starlight wrath can’t really be changed at this point. Introducing a glyph to re-increase the cast time of wrath isn’t a good idea, either, because we’d have to waste a glyph slot to undo the effect of 5 talent points we spent.

  • Change the Celestial Focus & drop that 3% haste from talents at that point in the tree.

Just giving us less haste through talents would be an okay short-term band-aid fix. They could change Celestial Focus to give a PvP survivability buff, and compensate for the damage loss in other ways (much to the grumbling of the resto druids who wanted to pick up this talent to help off-set the GotEM nerf). This is probably the best place to make a change for 3.3, and it would essentially just raise the gearing cap for haste by 3% – so it would be a temporary band-aid fix at best, but a band-aid fix for 3.3 may be all that we really need at this point.

  • Leave it alone & wait for Cataclysm

This is another viable option. We could just “deal” with it for Icecrown Citadel, and wait for a whole new revamp to take care of the problem. We’ll get at least 1 new balance DPS spell for our PvE rotation (because they would have to do that to “fix” a lot of our problems), they could make us less reliant on Wrath for PvE, they could revamp the whole talent tree to give us less haste but still keep us viable. They could easily change Nature’s Grace at that point along with the dozens of other changes, so we won’t even notice the loss. With the other Cataclysm stat & talent system changes, it will be really easy to compensate for any re-balancing that has to be done to make haste a more attractive stat for us.

What do we do until then? I’m really not sure there is a good answer…

14 Comments

  1. chris
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Easy. Put in a glpyh that doubles the *base* cast time for wrath, increase the spell damage a little, and the base cast time increase would help it scale with gear because the coefficient would be better. That way the PvE folks get the damage, the PvP folks get the short cast time, and everybody’s happy except the poor guy at Blizzard who has to make the new glyph.

    lyna.

  2. Lissanna
    Posted October 24, 2009 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    We’d have to waste a major glyph slot for it, which would suck because that would end up lowering insect swarm’s damage…

  3. Erdluf
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

    I think you meant Celestial Focus, not Nature’ Focus.

  4. Lissanna
    Posted October 25, 2009 at 10:18 pm | Permalink

    Yes, Erdluf. I meant CF, not NF. Dang talents all sound the same. :(

  5. Cherry
    Posted October 26, 2009 at 3:01 am | Permalink

    @chris: doubling the base cast time for wrath has the negative side effect of delaying proccing Eclipse, as well as the losing a glyph issue.

  6. Yi
    Posted October 26, 2009 at 4:56 am | Permalink

    Glyph of Wrath :
    Cast time of wrath increased by 300% but launches 3 wrathes at the same time.

  7. Posted October 26, 2009 at 9:09 am | Permalink

    starfire when NG proc :S

    or ask blizz to leave it in a minimun 1 sec cast to compensate the minimun GCD

  8. Ditto
    Posted October 26, 2009 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    “or ask blizz to leave it in a minimun 1 sec cast to compensate the minimun GCD”

    how about spells with cast times below 1 second, become instant cast.

    Keeps you at the GDC, but helps us during movement fights, and keeps haste important, so we can spam the spell but move at the same time? Could be a bit OP for PvP but we need some help there anyway.

    Dunno. All I know is I hate seeing that Solar proc right as the RL calls “Heroism… Now!”.

  9. Wasko
    Posted October 27, 2009 at 12:09 pm | Permalink

    Just an info … haste cap is when your casting time of wrat is 1.0 sec, right ?

  10. Aelinna
    Posted November 14, 2009 at 8:27 am | Permalink

    Nerfing CF would indeed piss off the restos. Without CF I’d have to pick up Living Seed, which doesn’t affect RJ or WG.

    Make only 50% of haste affect wrath and convert the rest to SP or crit. The IS glyph is pretty dull so I don’t see a problem replacing that and compensating with the conversion rate.

    It could be more interesting to convert 100%, so SF with sufficient haste is faster, allowing high skill pvpers to switch spells by when haste procs hit.

    Nature’s Grace is a proc, ie cannot be triggered on demand and spikes haste. This causes problems for both moonkin and trees. Moonkin get a spike which caps the haste they can gear to and adds even more DPS variance. HoTs can’t crit, so trees only benefit on their second or third consecutive direct heal.

    These problems could be addressed by converting it to an Illustration-like haste buff. There is some gameplay interest in maintaining the stack during slow periods and the total granted haste can be lower to compensate for presumed near-constant uptime.

  11. Dugman
    Posted November 17, 2009 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    So…after witnessing a shadow priest do 7.4k DPS (yes…SINGLE TARGET) in Onyxia 25 I started thinking. Yes…I know…its dangerous and you all smell somthing burning.

    I have since reviewed the specs on the priest and noted that haste was >660. So…here is my thought. Is it worth it for a Boomkin to max haste (significantly higher than 400…closer to 600) and eliminate Eclipe and wrath altogether. Simply push the cast time of Starfire so low that you only use a MF/SF rotation with Glyphs of Starfire and Moonfire. This also works well with the Idol of Lunar Fury and the higher Tier gear which procs crits on moonfire and increases Starfire (and wrath for that matter) damage with set bonuses.

    Has anyone tried this? I am not talking about 425 haste here…I am suggesting 600+. Thoughts?

  12. Lissanna
    Posted November 17, 2009 at 10:24 pm | Permalink

    They buffed Eclipse so much over the last year that there’s no way to get around using it right now. We’re stuck with it as a good part of our rotation until Cacalysm hits and we find a way to get rid of it.

  13. Ed
    Posted January 24, 2010 at 12:21 pm | Permalink

    i know this might sound stupid but……how about giving players the option of lowering stats like haste on their gear so they can overcome issues like this. this way you can adjust your haste so that wrath doesn’t clip the gcd.

  14. Ed
    Posted January 24, 2010 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    ok i just relaized that my suggestion would affect all the other spells too so that won’t work. but in the same vein how about giving us a some aort of slider that adjusts the haste scaling for wrath to increase the cast time. or come up with a way to limit cast times of spells so that they can’t under the gcd.