Saturday, February 7, 2009

Mana regen nerf?! But - but -


Blue says (I've bolded and cut out various things btw):

"As we have suggested, we have become concerned that mana regeneration is currently too powerful, especially for healers. We want players to have to keep an eye on mana. We don’t want you to go out of mana every fight, but running out of mana should be a very real risk for sloppy playing or attempting content that you aren’t yet ready for. When mana regeneration is trivial then certain parts of the game break down – classes that offer Replenishment are devalued, stats that offer mana regeneration are devalued, and spells that are efficient are neglected in preference to spells with high throughput.

Here are a list of changes you are likely to see in 3.1. They will be available to try out on the PTR. Mana regeneration is somewhat technical, so please bear with us.

* Regeneration while not casting (outside of the “five second rule”) will be decreased. We think that (1) the ability to cast heal over time spells and then sit back and (2) benefitting from a clearcasting proc that also gets you out of the five second rule both provide too much mana regeneration, even over short time periods.

* To make this change, we are reducing mana regeneration granted by Spirit across the board. However we are also boosting the effects of talents such as Meditation that increase regeneration while casting. The net result should be that your regeneration while casting will stay about the same, but your not-casting regeneration will be reduced. This change will have little impact on dps casters, since they are basically always casting.

* The specific talents and abilities being boosted are: Arcane Meditation, Improved Spirit Tap, Intensity, Mage Armor, Meditation, Pyromaniac and Spirit Tap. Yes this makes these “mandatory” talents even more mandatory, if such a thing is possible.

* Since paladins rely less on Spirit as a mana-regeneration stat, we have to address them in other ways.

* We are also taking a close look at clearcasting procs themselves. One likely outcome is to change them to an Innervate-like surge of mana so that the net benefit is the same, but healers won’t shift to out-of-casting regeneration so often.

* We balance around the assumption that even 10-player groups have someone offering Replenishment. To make this even easier on players we are likely to offer this ability to additional classes, as well as make sure that existing sources of Replenishment are more equitable.

These changes are ultimately being done to bring the different healing classes more in line with each other as well as to give the encounter team more leeway when designing encounters, who can balance with these new mana regeneration numbers in mind. In a world with infinite healer mana, the only way to challenge healers is with increasingly insane amount of raid damage, so that global cooldowns become the limiting factor since mana fails to be. We weren’t necessarily happy with that model, and this change hopefully allows us to move towards giving healing a more deliberate and thoughtful pace rather than frenetic spam."




Things I like about this:
1. Healing will be more planned. Rotations will be more precise. We won't be able to put a Rejuv accidentally on someone who already has one on them. Or refresh a stack of LBs way early, just because we can. Or spam a WG simply because it's up and there are 2 people in that group that have a bit of damage. And honestly, I *like* this. I'm going to have to be really careful with my mana from now on, and I'm cool with that. It'll be a nice challenge.

2. I think that first point is really the only thing I like about it.

3. See 2.

Things I don't like about this
1. Glyphs. This is going to make people take Glyph of Innervate a little more seriously. Which is... fine. With spirit nerfed, an innervate on yourself without the glyph may not top your mana off. Hell, people might be using the glyph to put an innervate on themselves, rather than using it on someone else. But this means that I'll have to relook over my current glyphs and figure out what's gotta go to make room for that one (if I do decide I want it). Glyph of Swiftmend will have to stay. Hands down, no questions. Glyph of Lifebloom will be even more viable, because with the mana nerf, having that extra second of LB ticking will mean less LB casting overall in general. And LBs aren't inexpensive when it comes to mana. Which leaves Glyph of Regrowth to be replaced.

....I don't wanna replace it! I like it! I've been focusing on gearing towards crit, and I put talent points in improved regrowth, and, QQ! /end rant

2. Druid trees are going to start looking for gear with Mp5. Which means looking at cloth gear. Which the clothies, I'm sure, will not appreciate. I'm hoping that Blizz will implement a revamped line of gear for resto druids that has more Mp5 when 3.1 hits. It's a bummer, because I always loved the balancing of spirit and mp5. There was never a clear winner (well, spirit usually was better, but mp5 was nice to have as well) and it was neat to have to balance stats like that. I'm afraid that now druids will think mp5 is king, leaving spirit to sniffle in a corner like a sad outcast kid during recess. But spirit IS will still be good, right? Still gives you spell power, good innervates, a little bit of mana regen... right?

3. Blizz mentioned something about the "endless mana pool" healers have. Yes, that is true, because technically our mana regens (slowly, but surely). But on fights like Sapph and KT, which are *long*, I've definitely used the whole "jump out of the 5 sec rule, stay there for as long as humanly possible without letting someone die, and then jump back in with some mana regened and heal again" technique. I remember on some fight, a while ago, maybe it was KT but I think it was a 10 man, I completely ran out of mana (I had some pretty awful mana regen back then) and our raid leader told me to just sit back and not cast, regen a bit, while he took over healing. So I did. Regened the mana, and jumped back in. After 3.1, you won't be hearing our raid leader say that again. ...weird.

I wonder how much it will be nerfed? Right now I have something like 850 regen while not casting, and 290 while casting. Will it be 700/290? 500/290? 400/290? I guess we'll have to wait and see.

I might have a hard time getting used to this. I'll enjoy the challenge, but it will take me a while to remember that I can't sit back, relax, and regen. Bah. What do you all think?


2 remarks:

Wise Fox said...

I have to admit, I can't remember the time I was drinking every few min on my druid. Ive swapped over to a shaman and mana has become slightly less relevant as I have water shield plus glyphs for it, im drinking even less than I am on my druid.

I'm unsure how the changes affect me though, will be interesting to see once the patch hits

Averna said...

Agreed... when I was leveling my mage, I had to stop and drink after I pulled two mobs, and sometimes after only one. But I never remember doing this on my druid.

And even now in end game, I can have pretty much 0 mana at the end of a fight, and by the time the next trash pulls comes, I'm already up at 80% again. The out of combat regen is nuts right now.

It's just a matter of endurance fights like KT and Sapph, where you're constantly casting. For instance, on Sapph - say, if you're the ice block - yeah it sucks because one of the healers is ice blocked, but at the same time it lets me regen my mana for 10 seconds. After the nerf, it will just plain suck, without any inadvertent benefit.

And in Malygos, between phase one and two, it's always nice because you just sit there and regen. After 3.1, not anymore.

Just some thoughts =)