Patch v3.1 Class Change Preview (Part 2 and 3)

A few days ago we posted Part 1 of 3 of the class change previews. Well here are the remaining 2 parts! Interestingly, PvP Warriors around the world will be celebrating the huge penalty reduction from changing stances (it is now a flat 20 rage loss, 10 rage loss with Tactical Mastery). As well, while Mages will be saddened to see that their preview list is not that big, they should note that their updates are very vague, and could therefore turn out to be huge changes!

We are planning a lot of exciting content for patch 3.1.0, and we are doing a three-part preview series on upcoming class changes. Please keep in mind, that this list is not at all comprehensive, and subject to change.


  • Improved Shadow Bolt – this talent now provides a 5% spell critical strike buff (similar to Improved Scorch).
  • Improved Soul Leech – this talent now provides Replenishment (similar to shadow priests)
  • Drain Soul now has a chance to produce Soul Shards even if the target doesn’t die.
  • Siphon Life no longer as an active ability but the talent grants the old Siphon Life effect to Corruption.
  • Curse of Recklessness and Curse of Weakness have been combined into one spell
  • Consume Shadows – this Voidwalker ability is no longer channeled but has a cooldown.
  • Several other warlock talents have had their ranks reduced, their effects changed or removed. This list includes but is not limited to Demonic Empathy, Shadow Embrace, Eradication, Suppression, and Pandemic.
  • Additional new talents have been added.


  • Savage Defense – this is a new passive ability. When a druid in Dire Bear form deals a melee critical strike, the druid gains a damage shield equal to 25% of their attack power. The next hit completely removes the shield regardless of how much damage was done.
  • Survival of the Fittest has had its bonus armor reduced to compensate for the above increase in damage mitigation.
  • Faerie Fire (and similar debuffs) now reduces armor by 5%. See Sunder Armor in the warrior update below for additional details.
  • Thorns and Nature’s Grasp can be cast in Tree of Life form.
  • Survival Instincts now works in Moonkin form.
  • Replenish – to avoid confusion, this talent has been renamed “Revitalize.” It now also works with Wild Growth.
  • We are also looking at increasing the sustained (not burst) damage of feral druids in cat form.



  • Changing stances now has a much reduced cost: you lose a maximum of 20 rage (10 with Tactical Mastery). For example, if you have 100 rage and change stances, you will have 80 rage remaining. If you have 10 rage and change stances, all of your rage is lost. In addition, we may change the penalties associated with some stances.
  • You now gain rage when damage done to you is absorbed, such as through a Power Word: Shield.
  • Blood Frenzy now causes 2/4% physical damage done.
  • Sunder Armor (and similar debuffs) now reduces armor by 4% per application, and is now a single rank. Creature armor has been globally reduced so that debuffed targets should take about the same damage from physical attacks that they did before this change. The net effect should be that this debuff is slightly less mandatory in PvE and is not disproportionately more powerful against cloth targets in PvP.
  • We are also adding increased damage to Arms, possibly through Overpower or Slam.
  • We are also looking at granting rage when the warrior blocks, dodges or parries.


  • Improved Water Elemental – this talent has been removed and replaced with a new talent that grants Replenishment (similar to Shadow priests).
  • We are also working on a way to give frost mages Ice Lance “Shatter combos” in PvE.
  • We are also working on more survivability for Fire spec in PvP.
  • We are also working on making Spirit a more useful and interesting stat for all mages.


  • Blessing of Kings – this spell is now a base ability trainable by all paladins.
  • Exorcism – this spell now causes damage to all types of enemy targets. However, it always critical strikes undead or demon targets. This change should make sure paladin damage doesn’t drop when going from Naxxramas to later tiers of content.
  • Shield of the Templar now causes your Avenger’s Shield and Shield of the Righteousness to silence targets for 3 sec. The old damage bonus of this talent has been folded into Holy Shield, Avenger’s Shield, and Shield of the Righteousness.
  • Ardent Defender, Improved Hammer of Justice, One-Handed Weapon Specialization and more have had their ranks reduced.
  • Guarded by the Light – no longer reduces the mana cost of shield spells, but now has a 50/100% chance to refresh Divine Plea duration.
  • Judgements of the Just – now also reduces the cooldown of Hammer of Justice by 10/20 seconds and increases the duration of the Seal of Justice stun effect by 0.5/1 second.


  • Consumable ammunition has been removed from the game. Arrows and bullets no longer stack, but are not consumed. Ranged attack speed bonus gained from quivers and ammo bags will be preserved in a different capacity.
  • A new tier of hunter pet talents have been added. In particular, this allows Beastmaster hunters to improve their damage per second (DPS) with their 51 point talent.
  • Hunting Party – this talent has been reduced to 3 ranks and also grants a passive bonus to the hunter.
  • Piercing Shots – this talent has been changed. Your Aimed, Steady and Chimera Shots cause the target to bleed for 10/20/30% of damage dealt for 8 sec.
  • Sniper Training – this talent has been changed. After standing still for 6 sec, you gain a 2/4/6% damage bonus to Steady, Aimed and Explosive Shot.
  • We are also looking to add additional trap functionality to Survival.


Death Knight

  • Gargoyle and Unholy Blight have swapped talent positions. Gargoyle’s damage has increased and runic power cost per time has decreased.
  • Pestilence – this spell no longer causes damage but just spreads diseases. Blood Boil is intended to be the general area attack, and has been changed to be castable on targets with no diseases on them, but does extra damage if diseases are present.
  • Unbreakable Armor now absorbs a flat amount of damage that increases as your armor increases. It no longer boosts armor.
  • The Frost tree has been shuffled. Among other things, PvP talents such as Endless Winter are closer to the top of the tree where Blood and Unholy death knights can access them.
  • Sudden Doom – this talent now procs a Death Coil rather than requiring an additional button click. It works similarly to shamans’ Lightning Overload.
  • Magic Suppression and Blood of the North have been reduced to 3 ranks for the same benefit.
  • Blood Gorged now grants armor penetration instead of expertise.


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Mage changes
# Feb 10 2009 at 1:27 PM Rating: Decent
1 post
When is Blizz gonna get the point. PVE is the predominant style of play and mages suffer horribly for PVE when in arcnae spec. I like to be a little diff than everyone else and choose arcane but **** there hasne been decent upgrade for arcane in for ever. Blizz is pulling the same **** EQ did by listening to the selct few and if they dont watch it someone will come along with a new MMORPG and WOW will become an EQ equivalant. Get your **** together blizz and balance your classes for the PVE folks.
Warlocks still outta luck
# Feb 10 2009 at 12:34 AM Rating: Decent
944 posts
well even with the hunters change to the free bag space.... warlocks get overlooked again with soulshards... oh well maybe next patch.
Warlocks still outta luck
# Feb 10 2009 at 8:38 AM Rating: Decent
132 posts
Locks don't really need this because they are able to replenish their shards with every mob they kill... it doesn't cost them anything to do it, except a bit of mana. With what they have done regarding the lock summoning, that makes this even more managable.

reactions are like a box of chocolates... you never know what you are going to get. If you can't handle that, don't open the box!!
Warlocks still outta luck
# Feb 10 2009 at 9:48 PM Rating: Default
50 posts
Reactions are like a box of chocolates... you never know what you are going to get. If you can't handle that, don't open the box!!

omg... I luv this phrase... Its so true. Where did you get it from?
Hunter changes
# Feb 09 2009 at 9:31 PM Rating: Decent
267 posts
My main's a hunter and I really can't see much improvement there. I'm not aware of any hunters who were really asking for ammo consumption to be removed. It wasn't a problem and didn't need fixing. Which of these changes stop hunters from sucking in PVP? That's what needed fixing. Not dumbing down the class.
Trollbane server:
Alliance 80s - Ilya, Dawnchanter, Teonum, Muranum
Horde 80 - Ereyd

#Crowtongue, Posted: Feb 09 2009 at 3:51 PM, Rating: Sub-Default, (Expand Post) No ammo? Stupid move as fck. my main was a hunter, my first char even and one thing i realy liked was that feeling of actually crafting shots and having em in a quiver/ammo bag. This is just another step to make wow less realistic. Here You have few suggestions:
Hunter mods
# Feb 09 2009 at 8:32 AM Rating: Good
1,104 posts
I think I understand the Hunter modification (only lvl 27 Hunter...newbie :) ) Is that saying we don't have to buy quivers/ammo anymore??
Hunter mods
# Feb 10 2009 at 12:46 AM Rating: Decent
24 posts
That is what they are saying. no more bag space lost to ammo pouch or quiver. Just a one slot use like throwing impliments. BTW they used to be stackable too till blizz decided to make them repairable. So I like that. As an herbalist I am tired of having to carry a quiver instead of a bag to put plants in or use a regular bag and can't keep track of my arrows without having to hunt for them and stack them all at the bottom. So hurray for blizz for finally making more bag space for hunters!!
# Feb 09 2009 at 2:44 AM Rating: Decent
705 posts
Warrior rage reduction is complete crap for PvP warriors that never have over 50 rage anyway.

All the mage updates are complete ***** due to the fact that mana control in funny. Fire being more survivable in PvP...meh. Ice Lance Shatter combo's in PvE aren't going to help Frost unless they buff the **** out of Ice Lance.

Overall the changes are subpar at best for the Mage and Warrior IMHO. /golfclap
My solution to this is based on the realization that the proc rate is also equal to the number of attacks outside of the buff uptime divided by the number of uptime periods

no healadin love.
# Feb 08 2009 at 5:02 AM Rating: Decent
8,619 posts
Consumable ammunition has been removed from the game. Arrows and bullets no longer stack, but are not consumed. Ranged attack speed bonus gained from quivers and ammo bags will be preserved in a different capacity.
I don't even play a Hunter and I never understood why they had to lose a bag slot to a quiver.

Good move.

On the pally front, tankadin Tankadin TANKADIN!, where is the HEALADIN Smiley: inlove?
Jarkeld Hammerhiem Lvl 36 Paladin/Lvl 30 Armourer
Lestril Hammerhiem Lvl 40 Monk/Lvl 28 Provisioner Blackburrow server
Iaedian Tailchaser lvl 60 Fury/36 Jeweler. Proud member of <Bane> Crushbone server

Your mind is like a Parachute, it only works if it's open.
you're both doing it wrong
# Feb 08 2009 at 4:50 AM Rating: Default
17 posts
QQs about gold are superceeding valid negative PvE implications? Check your priorities.
quivers and ammo bags useless
# Feb 07 2009 at 11:15 PM Rating: Default
944 posts
ok now what will leatherworkers do now that they are losing like 4% of crafted items?
at least change the quiver into the ammo slot instead of the arrow and put the arrow damage on the quiver instead. sort of like making them a sigil
quivers and ammo bags useless
# Feb 08 2009 at 1:49 AM Rating: Decent
42 posts
its not just LW I am losing out on all my ammo sales with eng too.
# Feb 07 2009 at 7:47 AM Rating: Default
9 posts
Improved Water Elemental – this talent has been removed and replaced with a new talent that grants Replenishment (similar to Shadow priests).

Really? So if mages want mana control they have to be frost? A spec that does not need mana control? Put this in the arcane tree and it might be worth something.

Over all, what a waste of breath for the mages. Don't worry Activision will not have any impact on your WoW experience, Really?
# Feb 09 2009 at 9:29 AM Rating: Default
29 posts
I do think that the change to mage's Water ele. isnt for them... its gunna be more like a shadow priest they said... so its gunna be a raid wide mana battery then a dps/mana battery. IMO i will really miss the rate at which i can cast the Water elemental. and i agree with the others... that hurts my PvE abilities.... and it will hurt the frost mage unless they buff up the amount it will return mana wise.
# Feb 07 2009 at 6:32 AM Rating: Decent
17 posts
Ugh...once again the PvE world suffers for the PvP players. I wish Blizzard would start reworking buffs that would benefit the majority of the players rather than those that play only 2% of the actual game. Epic fail.
# Feb 07 2009 at 2:30 PM Rating: Decent
42 posts
I agree. Getting to the point where its not even worth it to play PVE anymore when every change has been towards pvp
# Feb 07 2009 at 5:22 AM Rating: Decent
11 posts
Hurrah, more bag space for us hunters!! That at least will be a good thing as long as we still get the haste bonus we would have gotten from the quiver/ammo bag.
# Feb 08 2009 at 12:00 PM Rating: Decent
98 posts

Where is the loving for us priesty types?

Not being funny but we have a few things that could do with a wee look at!

# Feb 08 2009 at 12:53 PM Rating: Decent
11 posts
Priests and others are in part one..
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