The Legion pre-patch brings chaos! And not just demons, but also the weird balance that results from gaining class changes while still missing key expansion-only components, like artifact weapons.
Vengeance Demon Hunters received a subtle change to their biggest spell, Soul Cleave, a few weeks ago:
Previously, Soul Cleave cost exactly 40 Pain. Now it costs between 30 to 60 Pain, and heals and deals damage proportionally to the Pain consumed. (Soul Cleave doesn’t show up well in datamining, so I don’t blame you if you missed the change.)
My raid tanking guides for previous expansions have been pretty successful, so I wanted to expand them to dungeons for Legion. Right now they just include simple tanking strategies for normal mode, but I will expand that to heroic and mythic once I get more testing in.
I’ve been working on this guide for quite a while, and using it a lot for myself because there are a lot of bosses to keep track of and it’s easy to forget what they all do. I hope it’s helpful for those in beta, or for those who aren’t, something to keep in mind when you experience these dungeons for the first time after August 30th.
For easy reference, you can find this guide in the “Legion Beta Guides” sidebar to the left, and once the expansion releases, under “Quick and Dirty Tanking Guides”.
Blizz, I need your help.
A few months ago there was a little movement among guide writers (you can see my contribution here) on how to discourage cookie cutter talent builds and advocate for individual experimentation. For one, swapping talents is just fun — you feel smart when you pick the right one, and it’s more rewarding when there’s an interesting choice and opportunity cost with that talent tier. Two, players will probably do better when they are encouraged to find talents that work for them and their current struggles, as opposed to the general “best in slot” talent. I mean, Blizzard knows all these things. Some devs even retweeted my arguments. But that all lies in contrast to the significant barriers that will be placed on talent swapping come Legion:
They’re finally here, and surprisingly little has changed from the initial announcement!
Looking through Vengeance demon hunter talents and artifact traits, you might notice that quite a few interact with each other. For instance, Charred Warblades heals you for 15% of the fire damage you deal, and there are many skills, talents, and traits that increase fire damage further. Let’s just take a look at those.
- Shear no longer reduces the cooldown of Felblade. Instead, it is the primary Pain generator.
- Felblade is now a talent, which acts as a cap closer and Pain generator.
- Immolation Aura now generates Pain over time.
- Soul Cleave now heals you for a baseline 10% and also heals you with nearby Shattered Souls, which appear on the ground and heal for 25% of your health.
On Episode 34 and Episode 35 of TankCast, Arielle and I talked about the latest blue post on tanking. The post goes over Blizzard’s goals for tanking and healing in Legion. The primary focus is making tanks easier to approach, improving active mitigation, and including healers in the tank survival equation. The whole post is below if you haven’t read it yet.
I’ve spent the weekend playing with Vengeance on the Legion alpha, and I’ve come to the conclusion that they’re great. If I had to draw a comparison, I’d say it’s similar to the protection warrior. They generate resources similarly (through damage taken and rotational abilities) and spend them on similar active mitigation. They both have a cheap, maintenancy ability (Shield Block, Demon Spikes) and a expensive powerful ability (Ignore Pain and Soul Cleave). The Vengeance resource, Pain, is the same as Rage, except it doesn’t decay (yet). After that, they two specs are very different.