by Sascha “Yiska” Heinsich
The patch is a couple of weeks in and many top players have been trying to stay in shape for the TR, testing the newest changes. We asked a couple of questions to players both from Europe and North America about the most important changes and how they will effect the tournament scene. The answers were interesting to say the least.
Rogues had been buffed in the last patch and old school Rogues have been trying it out as most would describe it as the “more fun” spec to play. While more fun does not exactly equal more success but rather a break from the usual Mutilate spamming, players like Reckful have been fairly successful with it. Check out his video if you haven’t.
Let’s see what the top players think of the changes. First I asked:
“What was your opinion with the changes to Subtlety Rogues? Do you think we will see them in live ladder or tournament play?”
Here are the responses:
“I think we will see it come up more as time goes on for ladder play, shd requires less babysitting than mutilate so you can expect other healer dps / shd rogue comps to work better than before. As for RMP I definitely think it will be used in tournament play” – Kalimist, Team Dignitas
“They will have more of the option of using the spec now at least” -Twixz
“I like how Shadowdance is now a viable spec for Rogues that understand how to play the spec. Verty/Sodah and I did many RMP games with Reckful while he was playing dance and I really enjoy working with a dance Rogue in arena. Subtlety is also interesting because it doesn’t seem like it’s a spec that anyone can be successful with, since it doesn’t consistently have high damage like Mutilate Rogues do.” -Pookz, Team EG
Exciting answers from Pookz and Kalimist in terms of continent perception of the spec. Both seem convinced that Subtlety now is a viable option for tournaments, which should definitely get some mind games going. Pookz hinted at this as well, stating:
“I feel Rogue teams with Druid healers will attempt to play Shadow Dance and teams with Shaman (RLS) will continue playing mutilate for ladder play. Tournament play is different because they’d know what comp they would be fighting so the spec of the Rogue would depend on the comp they are fighting”
From my own personal experience I can say that, for example, RMP mirrors change entirely as sticking to the Mage while always having the option to switch to a different target in a heart beat (or a Shadow Step *cough*) seemed very viable. Great options and mind-games ahead people!
On to the next question:
2. How big was the Bladestorm change? (for those unfamiliar with the change; it can now be disarmed)
“The Bladestorm change was quite big but it has not really effected the good warriors as much as the bad ones from how thinks are looking.” -Kalimist
The difference between a good and a bad Warrior in situations Kalimist is referring to is that good ones know when to expect a disarm. It’s all about timing and coordination with your team. If the player with the disarm is CC’d, you’re free to storm. Pookz agrees:
“The Bladestorm change was a buff to rogue, Shadowpriest and even some Hunter comps. Double Healer warrior and TSG comps are not as strong against RMP as they were. I can’t really say if the Bladestorm change was needed or not needed but it definitely does require warrior teams to coordinate CC (on the disarmer in this case) before their burst.”
TSG and double heal both don’t have a spammable CC, so it’s rather easy for them to disarm a Bladestorm because even if they use one of their CC’s on the disarm class, he always has the option to trinket if times get tough. SK’s Inflame didn’t sound all that concerned even though he will play with a Warrior in the future, though they of course have a spammable CC to force Trinkets before Bladestorming:
“Bladestorm change doesn’t matter. Warriors are still overpowered as f***”
And all doubts just have been killed. Chin up Warriors, it’s not so bad after all.
What do you feel was the biggest change in 3.3.3?
“DK buffs and passive auras” -Twixz
Is he hinting at a come back of Flexx on the DK Class? Certainly the ability to protect their diseases was huge for Dks in some comps and especially against some teams. Dks can do pretty scary things to Priests on Live at the moment.
“There weren’t really any game breaking changes in 3.3.3” -Inflame
The bad boy of the WoW community obviously isn’t convinced that anything really changed on live servers to a degree that some comp or class suddenly got better. The changes weren’t so harsh after all.
“The biggest change for me was being able to use Frosfire Bolt instead of Fireball when Brain Freeze procs. Having those extra Fingers of Frost procs is a good addition to my game. The biggest changes in the game were the Subtlety changes, diseases not being dispelable, and the Bladestorm change.” -Pookz
Pookz also mentions the DK buffs and adds some Mage centered information to it, which certainly was a buff as well. Contrary to other players, he seems to think that Bladestorm was indeed hit pretty harsh.
Finally I asked the players to grab their crystal balls and predict the future for me.
“What class/combo do you expect to do well on TR?”
“Hunter, Paladin, Warlock is going to be the most popular comp this TR.” -Kalimist
“I think any type of Ele/Lock Wizard cleave, Spriest/Rogue/Sham will do good” -Inflame
“I see PHD doing quite well on tr”– Twixz
Interesting answers for sure. No one answered the same comp twice and I personally couldn’t pin a comp as well. The Meta game will once again be important. Is your comp strong against the majority of teams playing? Can I do well by just sniping the top teams with my comp? Those kinds of question should be considered when trying to aim for the top 8. When players from all around the world come from their Battlegroups to crawl onto the Tournament Realm, surprises will happen. Can Blizzard please surprise us with an announcement soon?