Tuesday, 26 June 2012

1.3 Changes, Buffs and Nerfs and my Verdict!

1.3 patch is right now on the PTS and as always, it brings changes in classes. Not a lot of changes like 1.2 did but still...


I would also want to add those are MY OPINION. You are free to disagree and comment. My reason for posting this is to summarize the incoming changes. This post summarizes the patch notes up to the 06/25.




TL;DR

Tanks dps and PvP performance has decreased a lot and some hybrid tank specs are now required to a viable PvP performance as their cap abilities are almost useless. Tanking in PvE situation has been made a lot more easier. Gunslingers/Snipers and Commandos/Mercenaries have had their dps and resource management improved greatly.





TANKS




AoE threat was certainly a big issue for tanking specs and has gotten fixed. Overall, threat generated has been increased by 50%. That would be most welcomed for the group finder as I believe, tanks would be in high demand. Making tanking easier would surely encourages more players to try this role and would in long terms help the community. For even more convenience, they introduced 'smart' AoEs. Now, most of the tanks main AoE attacks that helped them increase their threat, doesn't hit enemies that are in any form of Crowd Control. Another downgrade for tanking difficulty.




KNIGHT/WARRIOR




SENTINEL/MARAUDER


Only Combat/Carnage 21-points ability Precision Slash/Gore has changed. It now costs 1 focus/rage and lasts 1.5sec less. It's duration is still the same as it's now out of the GCD and it's cost was reduced by 2 focus/rage. IT'S A BUFF!




GUARDIAN/JUGGERNAUT

Biggest change for all three specs is the redesign of Single Saber Mastery on the Vigilance/Vengeance tree: 
Single Saber Mastery now applies different effects based on your current Form. Shii-Cho Form now increases all Force damage dealt by 2% per point. Shien Form now increases all melee damage dealt by 2% per point. Soresu Form now increases melee and ranged defense by 1% per point and increases the threat generated by Smash and Sweeping Slash by 10% per point.
This is what this talent should have been from the start. Instead of a plain damage increase, it benefits each spec on their perspective field. Those changes really improve and polish the game.
There's no reason to get into details about the changes the made to the Defense/Immortal tree. Overall, they have based the spec's gameplay to stacking armor debuffs and accuracy debuffs. Their damage overall has decreased. The changes on Guardian Slash/Crushing Blow, their big hitter, have decreased their damage a lot and decrease their performance in 1v1 PvP situations.


VERDICT:
TANKING PvE: BUFFED
TANKING PvP: NERFED




CONSULAR/INQUISITOR


No changes for Sages/Sorceres.


SHADOW/ASSASSIN

They decrease the cost of their Ambush ability (Spinning Kick/Spike) by 10 force points and increased their AoE threat generation. Also, they decreased the self-healing of their tanking tree by 4%.
Overall, Shadows/Assassins tanks were OVERPOWERED both for PvE and PvP. Even though the nerf was much needed, we can't say that they were thrown into abyss. It was time and knocked off their Superman socks.


VERDICT:
TANKING PvE: NERFED
TANKING PvP: NERFED


SMUGGLER/IMPERIAL AGENT

Best change for both AC? The amount absorbed by Shield Probe/Defense Screen now scales properly based on character stats. As they are both classes with very few defensive cooldown, this is a major buff for their survivability. We don't yet know on which stat it scales (hopefully endurance), buffing a short cooldown (45 sec) it's definitely going to increase their performance, especially on PvP.


SCOUNDREL/OPERATIVE


Survivor's Scars/Survival Training healing received increase has lowered from 3% to 1%. Even though this is a minor nerf all classes with similar talents has been affected. I don't believe it would affect the class' gameplay.


GUNSLINGER/SNIPER



Lot's of changes in the Gunslinger/Sniper trees. First of all, the change to the cap abilities are mostly done to prevent a hybrid spec. Rapid Fire has now become a passive ability providing a 1-second CD reduction per point on bot Ambush/Aimed Shots and Series of Shots/Speed shot, certainly a buff here. Also, casting will be taking a bit of a hit with Target Acquired/Illegal Mod’s switch from Alacrity to Accuracy and Armor Penetration, but Rapid Fire and Sniper/Burst Volleys new traits should help make up for it, as they're effect is enhanced even though their cd has increased. Enginneering/Saboteur has also their DoT's damage increased.



VERDICT:
PvE: BUFFFED
PvP: BUFFED





TROOPER/BOUNTY HUNTER



COMMANDO/MERCENARY






Most Commando/Mercenary changes were made to the Gunnery/Arsenal talent trees. In addition to some talents being shifted to depend on other talents, sustained damage received buffs. Changes to Armor Piercing Cell/High-velocity Gas Cylinder would buff Commando/Mercenary sustained resource management by making energy cell generation and heat ventilation less reliant on critical hits. Sustained damage has been buffed through changes to the Gravity Surge/Light 'em Up  skill, which now applies an extra stack of Charged Barrel/Tracer Lock and Charged Barrier/Power Barrier with each Grav Round/Tracer Missile. Overall, more predictable resource generation is a good change and should help with the resource management difficulty many Commandos/Mercenaries and stacking debuff problens they've experienced after patch 1.2.



VERDICT:
PvE DPS: BUFFFED
PvP DPS: BUFFED



VANGUARD/POWERTECH





Powertech/Tanguard tanks gained a 50% threat generation increase but tank burst has been significantly decreased due to the flame shield and static shield skills changes. The critical chance bonus from these talents now gives 8% critical chance to Stockstrike/Rocket Punch and Explosive Surge/Flame Sweep.
The Flame surge skill has been redesigned so that it provides a free Flame Sweep, to provide Vanguards/Powertechs with more AoE damage even though that decreased their damage against single target fights. 
Overall, they nerfed the crit rate of the classes basic attacks (16% bonus , down from 30%) and cancelled the surge bonus (0% bonus, down from 30%). 
This patch decreased the burst dps and this is why this spec is heavily nerfed for PvP while probably buffed for PvE with the AoE changes.



VERDICT:
TANKING PvE: NERFED
TANKING PvP: NERFED

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