GC Y U MAKE ME SAD (of warlock tanking)

To preface this post, this is a reply to GCs post, that can be found here, but I can’t reply on the forums because I don’t have beta access (yet (This makes me sad)) But onwards!

For context, I’ve quoted the post below, followed by my response. And now there’s a follow up post. So I’ll go ahead and follow up below my original piece.

Just to make our intent clear, the Glyph of Demon Hunting isn’t intended to turn Demonology warlocks into a tanking spec. You won’t be able to queue as a tank for Dungeon Finder for instance and won’t have the survivability or tools of say a Protection paladin.

Historically, warlocks felt tankier than other casters and could even off-tank some encounters. We have made an effort in Mists to recapture some of that flavor. A warlock with this glyph should feel like they are about as effective tanking as an Arms warrior who pulls out a shield and swaps to Defensive Stance, or a Feral druid who goes into Bear form. You might be able to off-tank adds or pick up an actual boss for a short period of time if the tank goes down.

To make warlocks an actual tank would take more significant changes. For example, we want tanks to have to pick up separate tanking gear than their DPS gear (this is even true of druids) and want tanks to have to give up some of their DPS potential in exchange for their survivability. In short, it needs to be a commitment, and that’s the sort of thing that needs larger gameplay changes than just a glyph.

That shouldn’t stop the glyph of Demon Hunting from being fun though. As you can probably tell, we are trying to make even the major glyphs more about character customization and fun.

For the most part I’m going to argue 2 different angles here. The first angle is that the glyph fails to live up to its apparent intended use of letting us act like arms warriors or feral cat druids.

As it stands now the glyph greatly changes many of our ability’s while in meta, the key corner stone for metas DPS and seemingly makes meta last indefinitely. This is not a minor change of just stance dancing or form switching and using a few cool downs, this is a major change, effecting our DPS outside when emergency tanking, this is the complete opposite of what bear and arms warriors do (unless they expect to be emergency tanking, which is another matter entirely).

The second angle is that would it be such a bad thing if we were the only class who would have a major commitment to tanking through a glyph? Blizzard (as a whole) have always stated that you like it when one class is the “only class” to do something, or have something a specific way. Why stop now?

Sure, there are problems that stand between us and real tanking, avoidance, mitigation, separate gearing, cool down disparity, just to name a few. These can all be overcome through the beta though.

However, whatever you do, please don’t leave us with the glyph in a weird half gimped spot similar to where it is now. Where we can’t use it because it effects our DPS to much to be emergency tanks, but its not good enough to let us full time tanks. That would be the absolute worst thing you could do.

Warlock tanking has people excited, you should try to hold onto that.

As some of you have pointed out, the glyph of Demon Hunting in your beta build doesn’t deliver on what I described above as the design. The newer version of the glyph, hopefully available in the next beta build, allows a warlock to toggle in and out of the off-tank / survival mode, more like the druid going Bear or the warrior going Defensive.

The new shapeshift granted by the glyph is called Threatening Presence (PH) and adds Taunt and Fury Ward to the normal Metamorphosis toolkit. You still get the damage reduction from mastery instead of the damage boost from mastery while in this form. You can also choose to go into normal Metamorphosis even if you have the glyph. Let us know how it feels.

We appreciate all the feedback and passion on this topic. We expected this glyph would serve a pretty niche community and were surprised at how many players were excited about it. We are still in beta and are still very much experimenting with what kind of gamplay we can deliver in glyphs.

I like the new changes. This puts it down to the “emergency tank” level without gimping our DPS. YAY. DANCE. Sorta.

To answer your last point, about how your surprised players are excited by this I have only to say that for 2 expansions now you’ve held meta tanking just out of our reach, we’ve had bits of parts of it, we had the taunt in wrath, we have the armor. But we have never had all the tools, nor the ability to have meta last long enough for it to work. But it was there, just out of our reach, and now your surprised people are so excited that your pulling it down and potentially giving it to us?