Many of you will recall I wrote a Scattered Shots article a while back suggesting that hunters have too many buttons. They key here is that the issue isn’t just with having enough spare brainspan to hit all of our buttons, but that the more damage increasing buttons we have, the less numerical difference there is between them, and we’re starting to occasionally bump into design issues as a result.
I suggested in the article that we’ll probably have to wait for the next expansion before the issue is really addressed, but that it’s possible in the meantime to alleviate some of the issue by turning some of our abilities (like, say, Dire Beast) into procs.
Well, someone got a response from Ghostcrawler on this very issue a while back. This is something that we talked about on the Hunting Party Podcast at the time, but I realized I never mentioned here on the site (this is often an issue with the podcast: if I blogged about it on the site on Monday or Tuesday, by the time the podcast rolls around I think we talked about it on the previous week’s podcast. Similarly some stuff we talk about on the podcast I think I must have already mentioned on the site).
In short, Ghostcrawler said: yup, hunters have too many buttons but nope, now’s not the time for us to meddle with their rotation:
We’re not sure 5.2 is the right time to convert any of the active buttons to passive procs. While we would like to slim down the number of buttons hunters need to manage overall, changes like this are controversial and I’m sure it would feel like a nerf (even a nerf to fun) to many hunters.
Now, it’s easy to take issue with it feeling like a nerf if it’s converted into a proc. After all, most of the time we have an ability become baseline or turn automated, we all agree it’s a buff. I think the issue here is that most of these abilities currently consume a global cooldown, so to move the ability to a proc it would have to be slightly weakened to account for the fact that we can now cast an extra Cobra Shot or Arcane Shot in that slot of our rotation.
Sure, it isn’t a nerf in any way that matters, but to a lot of hunters it will feel like a nerf, because they won’t see the big picture; they’ll just see that Dire Beast all on its own is weaker than it was before. And ultimately those feelings matter a lot more than facts in how players respond to changes.
Personally, I still wish they’d go for it. Just doing it one or two abilities, dip your toes in the water, see what the response is like. As long as they are careful to ensure that there’s no reduction in overall dps (which really means ensuring that simcraft and femaledwarf will model it that way) then all of the leading hunter voices on the blogs and EJ will do the job of assuring the great hunter community that this is a good change.
I know I sure would!