General NotesLoss of Twinblades of the Deceiver and Legendaries
Due to their Legion release, Demon Hunters were essentially designed with the artifact mechanics in mind, however very few traits have been rolled baseline in beta to date. Although this is something that has affected all other classes to some degree, this is strongly felt for Havoc players.
The loss of
feels like a major loss of a baseline skill for Havoc, as it has been a large part of the rotation and Havoc’s overall AoE package. It is unfortunate this ability could not have stayed as part of the Havoc toolkit going forward. AoE damage, in general, was further reduced by the loss of Inner Demons and Balanced Blades.
Feast on the Souls was a major part of solo and small group play for Havoc and made
reliable in dungeons and solo play.
was also considered one of the more fun legendaries for dungeon play and having it return to the talent tree in some fashion would be welcomed by many players.
Contained Fury was also a fairly large part of the rotational balance of Havoc and the current max of 100 Fury feels unnatural and awkward with
’s 40 Fury cost. It was somewhat expected among the Havoc community for the baseline max Fury to end up at least at 120, but this is not currently the case on beta. This makes Fury-capping even from normal sources far more likely and sometimes makes it not possible to even pool 2
s without capping Fury depending on the situation.Class and Ability Changes
was changed to be a flat 40% refund rate instead of being tied to Critical Strikes. Mechanically, this is probably a healthy change for balancing purposes considering the scaling issues with Critical Rating during Legion, however a 40% refund rate is lower than almost any point in Legion. Many Havoc players were already approaching 50% Critical Chance in Emerald Nightmare, so this 40% value is likely a bit more conservative than it needs to be and leads to a bias towards generators which feels sluggish.
has been changed to deal double damage to the primary target--similar to
talent. Additionally, the Wide Eyes trait has been rolled baseline to lower the cost to 30 Fury and the base cooldown is now 30 seconds as well. These are great changes as it allows
to be used as a core rotational ability regardless of the number of targets. The 100% Critical Hit chance still serves no real mechanical purpose and lessens the value of what will likely be a fairly weak secondary rating after the
has been left in a very strange spot in Battle for Azeroth as its base damage has been considerably lowered and all damage support (such as Bloodlet and
) has been removed.
is currently damage neutral on 2 targets compared to
and may even be questionable on the max of 3 targets given the low damage and lack of Fury generation. Considering that the Havoc rotation is already fairly light on buttons, it is hard to figure out what the purpose of
is and why it has been “designed out” of the rotation in Battle for Azeroth.
Chaos Blades has been removed from Havoc despite its overwhelmingly large role in Havoc gameplay since day-one of Legion. While this is understandable from a talent balance perspective, it is somewhat unfortunate to see this completely disappear, especially on a spec lacking a medium duration cooldown.
has been increased from a 15 second to 45 second cooldown, but otherwise functions the same. This is consistent with Paralysis, but creates a conflict between abilities such as Polymorph, Sap, and Hibernate that still have no cooldown at all. Additionally, Hex and Freezing Trap have more moderate 30 second cooldowns. It would be nice to see more consistency here. As they all technically have 100% uptime on a single target, a longer cooldown only makes CC more difficult to apply when people accidentally break them.
remains largely unchanged, but continues to be a fairly strange cooldown. Its lack of interaction with most abilities makes it very one-dimensional and it would be ideal to see it provide increased damage to abilities such as
naturally biases the gameplay towards
-oriented builds due to its design.
Demon Reborn is the third and last talent removed from the Havoc tree (along with Bloodlet and Chaos Blades, as mentioned earlier) but is likely not to be missed too much.
Demon Hunters were also given one of the five new raid buffs, Chaos Brand, which will likely mean at least once Demon Hunter will be “required” in most raid compositions. Talents99 Tier
- This tier is focused on bonus Fury gains.
- Basically the same, however the 100% damage increase for
on primary targets makes this a more effective DPS increase. Unfortunately, due to the lower Fury cap mentioned above, it is impossible to not waste Fury from this effect.
- Without Feast on the Souls, this talent feels a bit lost.
are more interesting talents and
’s benefit is pure survivability without that trait. Changing to RPPM is a good idea for balance, as it removes the
feedback loop. Souls are still awkward to see and pick up at times and it would be welcome to have a Vengeance-style aura for tracking available souls instead of having to guess.
- Essentially the same but the cooldown reset rate was reduced from 4.5 to 2 RPPM, which is a big hit to the pace and power-level of the talent. Given the increased damage of
, competing with
will be difficult even if
is fun to use. The 50 Fury gain can also be awkward in terms of capping with only 100 max Fury.100 Tier
- This tier is focused on primary Fury gains
- This is basically part of the Anger of the Half-Giants effect turned into a talent. Increases Fury generation marginally but is currently quite undertuned. The overall Fury gain here is low and it is the only talent on the tier that doesn’t have a damage component.
- With the lower refund rate on
, this doesn’t feel great on beta.
was adjusted multiple times based on higher
refund rates and the Anger of the Half-Giants legendary. Needs to be reevaluated within the context of the current mechanics. Many Havoc players have enjoyed the
playstyle, but there are many question marks about the viability of it right now.
- Probably the consensus best addition to the Havoc toolkit in Battle for Azeroth. This ability is fun to use and is an effective secondary Fury generator. Many Havoc players seem pretty excited to use this ability, so the relative weakness elsewhere on this tier is poor for talent diversity but not too negative in terms of player impact as
is a great ability to take.102 Tier
- This tier is focused on increasing AoE capabilities
- Somewhat boring but a fairly typical passive. This does not currently scale with
or Mastery, which is assumed to be an oversight at this point.
- Is now a pure damage increased compared to the hybrid damage + Fury generation design in Legion. However, it is now a much larger damage effect and likely will be extremely strong for
builds or any encounter with consistent AoE. Has large design space crossover with
, however, since they essentially do the same thing in in the same way for sustained AoE scenarios.
- Retaining the damage effect, this no longer has the complex cooldown reduction mechanic. Now simply a 1 minute burst AoE cooldown,
is likely to be quite useful in dungeons and on fights with timed add waves. Currently pretty overtuned on beta, but will likely be useful regardless of tuning in many situations.
was always a good talent that was simply competing with better talents. On an AoE-specific tier, this is a much better fit.104 Tier
- This tier is focused on survivability increases
- The only talent on this tier with any notable change. Now grants 10% passive Leech while having less burst Leech while in Meta. Overall a positive change for both solo play and raids as most of the additional Leech resulted in overhealing.
- Still essentially the same as in Legion. Situationally interesting, although the auto-trigger can be awkward in many situations. Overall, this is a pretty underwhelming talent outside of some situational uses where Blur going up to 50% is useful for some specific purpose.
- Unchanged from Legion. Still a poor man’s Cloak of Shadows, but likely will still be used for certain soaking applications.
still has the negative of serving no purpose on encounters where immunities are ignored. Cloak of Shadows can often still be used to remove deadly debuffs even if damage is not prevented, but
- This tier is focused primarily on increasing direct damage
- This is our second Legendary item talent translation, as it pretty closely mimics the effect of Delusions of Grandeur. However, this version is far less reliable. With this effect only being triggered by 40% chance
refunds alone (instead of all Fury spent,) the effect will be quite a bit less consistent.
Unfortunately, due to fight timings and cooldown breakpoints, this is not the type of effect that should be inconsistent. Delusions was very popular, but only because it could be used to yield additional uses of
on encounters at specific intervals. This also seems to be a poor “left column” passive as it is complex to evaluate and has limited solo play use.
- Basically unchanged other than moving tiers. This always has the potential to be quite strong as it turns
into a very high damage per cost ability and increases single-target priority damage even in AoE scenarios. This seems like a more natural left-tier passive than
is used heavily while questing/leveling.
Note: An unfortunate aspect of
is that it does not increase the damage of
on the primary target. Additionally, it is the only talent on the 106 Tier that does not benefit from Mastery in any way. As Mastery is likely to be Havoc’s strongest stat in Legion, this may lead to scaling issues as the expansion goes forward.
- The Havoc community seems very excited about this in general. It is a fun ability with huge payoff. However, as a talent, this seems problematic to balance against other options in the tier. This is an extremely powerful effect, even if it were to be toned down, it works together with so many mechanics that it may prove difficult for
to end up as attractive options.
has the potential to be rotation-warping and could become difficult to disentangle from core balance issues.108 Tier
- This tier is focused on utility benefits
- Talent itself is unchanged, however the effective power has been rather substantially reduced by
no longer being a stun. Still not a bad option for dungeons.
- Maintains the Snare effect from Legion, but no longer increases the number of charges of
to 2. This was a surprising change, as the additional charges were a fairly major part of this talent’s value. Without it, the snare becomes far less reliable, even with
having a slightly reduced cooldown.
- No longer includes the large damage component against stun immune enemies in Legion. This allows the talent to be moved to the utility row instead of the cooldown row like before. 30 seconds is a fairly long cooldown for a short stun effect. Abilities like Kidney Shot offer far more reliable stuns for dungeons and raids. It would be nice to either see the stun duration increased or the cooldown reduced.110 Tier
- This tier is focused on damage increasing cooldowns
- The effect is unchanged from Legion, but there are some related changes due to surrounding mechanics. On one hand, this is more generally attractive as
will be used in the single-target rotation due to the 100% primary damage increase mechanic.
Overall, it is positive that
can now be taken without a super-specific talent setup. Something to watch closely here is the large potential synergy with
- This talent is an interesting change from Legion, as it combines the effects of
and Prepared into a single talent, but removes the
effect from Vengeful Retreat. This makes Fel Rush the damage-increaser and Vengeful Retreat the Fury generator.
At the start of Legion when
was being played heavily, Vengeful Retreat and Fel Rush were not chained as you wanted to stagger them for higher uptime on the damage buff itself. With the changes, using them together is now beneficial.
However, with Vengeful Retreat being on the GCD now, this “combo” feels far more awkward than it needs to. These two abilities already had a shared 1 second cooldown, so the GCD change to Vengeful Retreat feels unnecessary. If you could smoothly combo Vengeful Retreat into Fel Rush to return to melee range, this talent could be a lot more fun.
- This is unchanged from Legion and a pretty no-brainer talent for single-target boss encounters. Fairly boring but syncs well with
and is very consistent.
secondary mechanic has shown itself to be quite weak in Legion and generally ignored outside of a small number of dungeons. Not enough dungeons or encounters share enemy types for this to be strategically viable and
has always been a stronger talent for in AoE scenarios anyway. Most boss encounters feature types that do not match and “proper” usage of this talent has rarely been practical. Additionally,
suffers from being non-functional with un-typed enemies (Gul’dan eyes, Xavius adds) and the fact that many encounter enemies do not actually trigger “death” abilities.Overall Conclusion
In many ways, Havoc remains the same at its core compared to Legion. There are definitely some nice improvements here but also some minor missteps that could be corrected to make the rotation more fun and engaging.
and certain artifact traits has been somewhat painful and it would be nice to see further iteration in these areas.
One of the biggest issues with Havoc currently is that the core rotation is still extremely sparse and quite boring. While there are a number of talent builds that play in a fun and engaging fashion in beta, those builds usually involve additional abilities such as
Without taking the optional abilities, the core rotation of Havoc is essentially just
off cooldown. The baseline spec has very little in the way of reactive procs or emergent interactions and without key talents the spec is not particularly interesting to play. This is risky as it leaves the fun-factor of the spec at the mercy of talent balancing and also may lead to poor talent build diversity.
Havoc feels like it needs another baseline ability or mechanic in order to really stand on its own without relying on specific talents to fill in the gameplay gap.
It is also questionable as to if Havoc truly has a strong enough toolkit to be a valuable spec for progression raiding. It seems likely it will often be one step behind “pure” DPS classes with multiple spec options and it will be heavily leaning on Chaos Brand in order to secure raid spots.
Baseline Vengeance has seen only a few changes.
Pain as a resource is worth little in the current iteration.
to generate souls, and since they already generate Pain, it makes that half of the resource cost mostly a non-factor. I like that souls were buffed and having a little more meaning as a resource, but it would be nice to have them be a bit more instant/have proper tracking tools. We still have to use an addon in order to track them even close to properly, as there is a lag between when the soul is usable and the buff updates. I like the flavor of souls being the way they are instead of combo points, as it’s different and they are “living in the world”. It would just be nice to have a reliable way of tracking them.
now always provides you with a soul as opposed to just having a chance. This means that Sever is no longer an ability in
Empower Wards was lost due to the magic reduction pruning from tanks. I believe that this is due to the desire to make tanks more healer reliant. By taking away mitigation from magic, it means that surviving a magic mechanic comes down to cooldown usage and recovery from healers. You could also argue that using your active mitigation properly, so as to not be auto attacked while taking a large magic hit, is a “personal management side of this change.
being put on the GCD, which I do not agree with as its almost purely defensive now and even with charred flesh which currently isn’t looking to be that good when compared to the other talents in the row and the fact that most of our fire damage is based on talents (primarily
cd was increased from 15 to 20 seconds, and the parry on it reduced from 25% to 15%, though the pain cost was taken away. This aids in Haste being one of our go to stats defensively and the pain reduction feels nice. It also gives talents like
a chance to shine, pending on tuning of course. This is all also in line with blizzards idea of tanks being less self reliant and reducing total AM uptime.
Otherwise it was mostly tuning in the form of
range cut in half.Healing
The biggest change, in theory, is the change to Souls healing a percentage of damage taken recently, instead of a fixed amount (based on AP). In practice, it doesn’t really feel that important, as the number of souls you can stock up (5) and consume (2 with Cleave, 3 with Bomb ) at any given time is relatively limited, and current tuning also doesn’t help make the mechanic feel as impactful, as, say, Death Strike from DKs, which uses a similar mechanic to calculate healing done. The general flow of the Vengeance rotation leads to a lot more trickle healing overall instead of big bursts of controlled healing, which is unfortunate but might also be necessary given that Vengeance has access to another powerful mitigation tool (
). Tuning could turn this around very quickly, however, and put a lot more emphasis on timing your soul consuming abilities properly. Current numbers (both the minimum and scaling amounts) feel a bit too low to really make the mechanic interesting as is.
The increased emphasis on souls also makes the “consume upon moving within x yards of a soul” mechanic a bit of a nuisance. If this were removed, it would be a nice Quality of Life change.
s healing per cast at the same pain level is half of what it is on live, down to ~3.5% of max health vs ~7% of max health on Live, while being AP based. Artifact
We only had 2 traits transferred into BFA. Fiery Demise (Charred Flesh) and Fueled by Pain (Gluttony). The loss of our artifact is not a huge deal for us, as the majority of the benefits from it were Painbringer and buffs to
The loss of Fiery Demise and Flaming Soul are the two largest losses, as the burst window potential and the extension of the damage reduction/dps, made
a powerhouse ability. With the loss of this,
should probably be updated to today’s style of WoW. Having only
as a major cooldown, with
only being useful on bosses/certain trash mobs, reduces our ability to react to large spikes of damage. Whether it’s having this brand the player, or buffing talents within the tree to compensate, this needs to be looked over once more.TalentsRow 1/99
Nothing changed much here except numbers tuning.
One possible change that has been discussed within the community (thank you Agga), was to change
s to the legendary boots. This would make an otherwise lackluster/dead talent into something useful and potentially shaking up the next couple rows in usage. It would also add a defensive aspect to the first row(s). The reason I say it is lackluster, is due to
being stronger for movement, and with
, stronger for dps.
gives the niche of slowing enemies, but also has potential for increased burst and will increase in dps with Haste/other talents in the tree as well as somewhat changing gameplay. So this talent is the only one in the row that doesn’t actually change anything except a small numbers increaseRow 2/100
, one option being % damage taken instead of AP based. Even 1-2% minimum health. Since it's "
" it could be changed to make consumed souls give the HoT instead. Giving you the toss between a HoT and more soul generation (
) when using
- Replace it with something else that effects souls or buffs Fiery Demise into a more meaningful ability. Change
to spread every 0.5 seconds and from all enemies with the debuff. It's an AoE talent that is underwhelming on AoE. If
s was changed to be the Legendary Boots, this talent would be far better in dungeons and it gives one of our 2 cooldowns an AoE side, as we only have 2 major cooldowns and one is put on the target instead of buffing yourself. More or less a nerfed Demoralizing Shout.Row 3/102
Change Charred Flesh. Fiery demise is nice, but most of our fire damage is talent based, and this competes with 2 of the fire sources. 20% is weak and it doesn't make sense from a design perspective. It would make more sense to bring back
and buff it so that we have AoE vs ST vs Survival. Which is a good balance.
is fine for the most part, if it is to compete, it needs to be better than
on ST and/or provide a meaningful survival gain. Pain as a resource is worth little currently. in the current state, it will not be used for dps or survival. Buffing its damage as well as
, has the potential to make this a highly competitive talent, if only on Single Target, which is completely fine and doesn’t need to be used for everything.Row 4/104
was only meaningful for Necrotic weeks prior to the leech fix. This talent is outdated and is roughly at the same power level if not worse than it is in current legion. This will never be used in BFA as is.
and is a pain generator. This sounds weird, but compared to Legion with Pain from damage taken, gameplay wise it is very similar. The only complaint within the community is the amount of dead gcds this talent provides, as there isn’t anything to spam and without this, we utilize every gcd.Row 5/106
needs to change/be rid of. It is currently only used for the very slight dps increase it provides. The first half of the talent was made before the macro fix, making half of this a non factor.
is the best option in the row for Dungs by a mile and you don't lose much if anything for choosing it in raid over the other two options. If it is to remain as a talent and not made baseline like it was originally, the other two talents need buffed. Note that the radius was reduced from 10 yards to 8 yards.
is not a bad talent, but it's meant more for utility and only sees play in pvp. It can't compete with Chains for utility in dungeons and can't compete with concentrated for dps. It needs changed or Chains removed from this row.Row 6/108
Gluttony shouldn't have been made a talent as is. Fueled by pain is good for flavor/novelty, however it is not something you want to be balanced around and is no competition for the other choices in the row in either offense. RNG survivability is not what a tank wants.The only reason this will see any play is if
is worse than
, and because this has the potential to provide more survival than
. It will not be a desirable pick, more of a “because I don’t have any better options” choice.
A couple things that have been discussed since Legion Beta to change this include making this give small meta charges that are controllable versions of this buff, or giving some kind of cooldown reduction for our meta cast. The charges model would basically be the same thing as the rng proc, except consuming X souls gives you a charge to use whenever. The CDR option could simply be reducing the cd on Meta or consumed souls reduce the cd of meta (i.e T21 4pc but better in raid because soul gen > parry chance) Both of these would make this a very competitive choice with
and would make it a desirable pick instead of a “just because there’s nothing better” option.
. I love this talent as an ability, but as a talent, it needs to beat the other options. It beats gluttony offensively, but cannot compete with
in either offense or defense. It could be made baseline and swap this talent with something that affects it or something that gives you meta when you cast it (Similar to how Havoc has a ton of
. The controversial talent. In its original incarnation, it was better than initially believed, and should have been used more. When it was changed to become
but better, it ruined one of our core abilities. This needs to be changed to either provide only offense, only defense or reverted back to its original form, with proper tuning, and
adjusted to compensate.Leaving it as is, will require tuning, and in the end, it will always compete with
as long as it's a modified version of
is more of a minor defensive increase. It has to compete with
for Dungeons/Progression, and
for Raid. This also requires
to be the best build, which then relies on other talent rows and tuning of at least 2 other abilities. It is nice that this is a replacement for Painbringer, but it does not appear to be an amazing talent or useful comparatively.
could be good competition for
, if only it is tuned properly. I do not see this being used in dungeons as the last iteration was, however this has a lot of potential in raid as a magic reduction or any sort of large hit, as you can gain a substantial shield. Note that while the shield size is increased, the minimum was taken away, meaning if the shield drops to 0, you lose the buff. This makes soul management a factor as well as allowing the shield to be stronger.