24 September 2009

Shadow is fine (for now)

Thank god for blue posts, otherwise I'd have no time to post today (WTB civilisation without work commitments).

Confirming what we already suspected, devs think shadow dps is fine:

In the case of shadow priests, we thought damage was a little low and made a very small adjustment. [i.e. The twisted faith/improved spirit tap buffs.] Many shadow priests think their dps is still unacceptably low, but we don't agree. (That also doesn't mean we won't make changes in the future. We do change our minds.)

I want to meet the person who says it's fine. Not to shout at them (although that would be my first instinct) but to try and learn from them. Logic says Blizzard knows the game better than I do, so when they say dps is fine it probably is — in theory, even if we don't see it in practice. Knowing how Blizzard conducts these tests, and under what circumstances, would be hugely informative. Do they play the class in raid situations to do the tests, or are they based on mathematical models? What tactics do they assume for each situation? Are they lumping AOE capability in with single target? Do they factor in stat variations, buffs, debuffs, lag, frame rate, what skill level do they balance around? How do you even quantify skill level? So if you have any contacts at Blizz, please drop me a line.


AShadowPriest said...

No, it's most certainly not fine.

Let me provide a practical example. My shadow priest, before I stopped playing him, was fully geared in Naxx25/Uld10 gear with a few pieces from Uld25 (this was about mid-July). According to Wow-heroes, his gear score is about 2300. Decent, definitely.

My mage I have been raiding with since mid-August has a gear score of over 2600 now. I push 5.5k dps on a regular basis, and am always top 5 dps in 25mans, easy.

I took my shadow priest into a heroic the other day, and I STRUGGLED to break 2500. 2500! that was WITH AoEing. The difference was staggering. Yes, he's not geared anywhere near as well as the mage, but I was able to do 2500 dps on my mage in blues and epics from heroics with a sub-optimal frostfire spec.

Shadow priests are not anywhere close to "fine." How on earth can Blizzard possibly think that?

They've been reversing their positions on a lot of issues lately though, so that doesn't mean it won't get additional changes, unlike how they've done things in the past.

Drypt said...

If I had to guess their rationale, I would expect that it would go something like this:

Shadowpriests are amazingly flexible and useful. They are the most survivable of the clothies (and perhaps even higher armour wearers) and bring an excellent assortment of raid buffs. Their AoE damage is amazing they can even heal in a pinch.

I agree that single-target DPS is low, which is incredibly annoying. I often end up towards the bottom of meters on fights with a lot of movement and one target. However, on other fights (like Freya for example) I never finish out of the top three.

In conclusion, yes, we definitely still need some Blizzard love, but our class is very well-rounded I expect that is adding "value" to our class and keeping us from further upgrades.

CC said...

Blizzard can kiss my feathers. My shadow priest was my main for a year and a half, but eventually, I'd had enough of being told "well, you're still useful!"

My moonkin does 5k fully buffed. I still miss my spriest, but she's unraidable right now.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I'm actually looking into disc healing so as to make myself useful these days.

The damage was great at the beginning of the xpac, but unfortunately we don't scale well with gear, and as the gear got better, our damage was left behind. We get penalized more for latency than any other class. There's really no way to remedy it unless you have perfect timing.

Versatility is nothing if everything you can do can be done by someone else who can offer higher dps or heals. My raid doesn't always have a boomkin, so I'm usually just there for the extra hit. If it wasn't for that, I couldn't tell you a single reason to have a shadow priest in a raid.

When the guy who does shadow priests for SimulationCraft starts chiming in, you know there's a problem.

Anonymous said...

What if there is a secret trick, that no one has discovered. Like if you could cast 5xSW:Pain and they would stack. :-D

I removed my shadow talents the other day. I'll go holy/disc for a while. Others might be doing the same, or play other characters, and hopefully they'll see shadow is declining in their stats.

I'll keep the priest as my main because it's my only geared 80, but when the expansion comes... I'll have a choice. :-)

Cassandri said...

Very well said. I, too, would like to have an open conversation. Whatever they're seeing, it's different to what I'm seeing.

Or perhaps they are seeing the same thing but that's what they're aiming for all along?

Perhaps it's important to see us still appearing in heroic 25 man raiding guilds?

Perhaps it's important that we don't overtake Mages, or, if we do 1 fight out of 25, that's just about right?

I feel the changes to Twisted Faith were more to bring us inline with the same spirit to spellpower % seen in other caster talents/builds, and actually had nothing to do with performance or dps output.

I remind myself that everytime we get passed over with a /pat "you're fine, stop worrying" that we dropped our restoration shaman from the healing team when we entered Ulduar. And we never got them back, even with buffs to resto in 3.2.

This scares me (god I hope we don't fall that far off the meters), but makes me hope that once Blizzard fix the bigger problems we'll get some attention.

Anonymous said...

Well, my opinion changes on a daily basis.

Shadow Priests are surely not top DPS, but I'd say they aren't broken. That's not to say they don't deserve a well earned upgrade to be competative, but it is possible to top the charts (even with single target dps).

I'm gonna put together a collection of all my tricks etc, and put them into a blog, but for now let me tell you that I am easily geared 1/2 Ulduar10 and 1/2 Ulduar25 with 1 piece of T9 from the vendor and maybe 1 or 2 245 level items from CC25 (aka ToC25). On a target dummy, self-buffed, with food and flask, I attain 2800 dps. Fully raid buffed, I can consistently pump out 3500-4000 dps on a bossfight that doesn't involve a lot of movement or situational debuffs that either fear or incapacitate me.

The funny thing is, my gear isn't exceptional. I'm quite run of the mill for a PvE raider. This preist is my alt and has pretty simple gear to get.

Check out Fredphelps on Fenris, Alliance... Guild: Soylent Cola

Anonymous said...

I raid with a Shadow Priest, and it's my main toon. He's been my main for about a year now and I will gladly say that the DPS is fine.

I'm routinely top 5 DPS and Damage Done (which is far more important!) in raids. I'm also usually top DPS in Heroics unless I'm in an otherwise all melee group with stud players. Shadow Priests are not islands in the sea; we feed from and benefit other casters. If you're surrounded by effective melee, they will usually out-DPS you because they're not so DoT reliant and don't ramp up DPS over time like we do. We also don't have explosive casts like Arcane Mages and Boomkins.

Let's also not forget that a Shadow Priest is not a pure DPS class. We'll not supposed to beat geared, skilled Hunters, Mages, Rogues, etc. We are supposed to provide solid Damage Done, very good (but not the best) DPS, and also: 1) Reduce Spell Hit requirements for casters, 2) Return mana, 3) Passive heal via VE, 4) CC/MC, 5) Dispel, etc. Shadow Priests are designed to be versatile, not to be competing with the "pure" DPS classes.

So if you want to be top DPS all the time, you shouldn't roll a Shadow Priest; roll an Arcane Mage instead. Our function is to provide high damage output with measurable, high-value benefits to the raid.

Anyone who puts in the time to really learn the class, learn what gear to use, what spec to use, and what casting rotations are called for in different situations will be an extremely effective raider. It's one of the more sophisticated classes in the game, and thus warrants more thought and attention to be truly "leet".

Anonymous said...

I have been playing my shadow for about... 9 month? 7? She wasn't my first toon. But I love her most. After a break I came back to do about the same as waht I did before. When I was heroics geared I could pull 3.5 3.6 in raids. And then I became ulduar geared and t8, and I still do the same. How does that go? Things did change and it's not my fault, I choose to think so. I recently did a 4 k. And fell in love again. It is possible to rock, but yes a lot of this is blizz.

Chef Skletti said...

Darn im actually glad to hear fellow shadowpriests say we are not fine, dps-wise that is. It makes me feel a lot less lonely. Due to the shitty dps we put out i don't even have any fulltime shadowpriest colleagues in my guild.

Sometimes i wonder why my shadowpriest is even my main. But then my guildies remind me of my cuteness, my fish-feasts, my singing on vent and how much they all love my enchanting and my day suddenly starts looking a lot brighter again.

But i heard in the new patch our dps will get a huge boost. So lets all just try to hang on and see what happens. In the meantime we can just play our alts to prove we can do more than faceroll.