Monday, March 2, 2009

I'm Buying You All A Round Of Tranq Shot

There is some crazy QQ flying around about Dual Specs. Big Bear Butt and Forever A Noob seem to be two big instigators - claiming that hybrids will take over raid spots, raid leaders will demand all hybrids have multiple gear sets, ect.

I'm on the side of Spinksville. The "need" for switching specs is not new to 3.1. The design of the game is simply such that you will want different amounts of tanks, healers, and DPS on various fights. If every fight took exactly 2 tanks, 7 healers, 7 melee DPS, and 9 ranged dps - encounter design would be so ridiculously limited.

For serious guilds, dual (hell, even tri- or quad-specs) have existed since the introduction of the mage portal & warlock summon combo.

Why then, do many guilds not currently have people swapping specs all the time?

Because players always have one spec they are best at.

"If my Druid can now, all in one character, walk into a raid or instance and, within seconds, either be a main healer, main tank or equitable melee or ranged DPS, whatever the Raid Leader wants at the time, AND be as good at it as the other classes are in each role, and the Rogue or Mage can only be a DPS, a DPS or a DPS?" - BBB
News Flash: No human is able to tank as well as a dedicated tank, heal as well as a dedicated healer, and DPS as well as a dedicated DPS. Its pure hubris to imagine that you can play all three rolls as well as someone that does just one, full time.

The capacity of the class does not equal the capacity of the player. You've probably met a Ret Paladin that can out DPS a rogue. That same Ret Paladin cannot out heal (in his dual spec holy set) the dedicated paladin healer, who in turn, cannot out DPS that same rogue (when dual-spec'ed Ret).

If your worried about someone else taking your spot - start learning how to play your role better. This goes for everyone - pure class or hybrid. If you can do your job better then anyone else, you are still the one getting brought to a raid. Not the person that pretends to do another job sometimes - they will still get sat out when their main spec isn't needed, on difficult content, for someone who does the needed job 100% of the time.

And as for Pure DPS classes complaining that they get nothing - how quickly have you forgotten about the "injustice" of mages having to spec out of Fire/Frost for Alar/Hydross, rogues spec out of poisons or backstab for mechanical or positionally unfriendly bosses, or Hunters/Warlocks having to spec out of pets for pet unfriendly bosses? Again, the ability to have add a strange/flavorful mechanic to a fight gives developers the ability to design a wider variety of awesome, fun fights.

Everyone benefits from this.



Vads said...

Well said.

I think everyone will have their main role that they like to do, and just like we do today, off specs.

I see only benefits here, making it easier than before to swap around for raids or helping friends out in 5 mans if class role balance is a bit off.

That druids and paladins can fill any role in the game and perform really well at it is another matter entirely, they already have that power. But whether this is right or wrong is a different topic entirely.

Tarsus said...

I've made this point before whenever this subject has come up (though not here on Mirror Shield, I don't think) - alternative gear sets take time to accrue. The supply of purples may have increased, but it is still finite and at the whims of the RNG. I think even the most hardcore raiding guilds would be challenged to set up their 25 man team with primary and alternative gear sets of equal quality by the time Ulduar hits.

So even counting without the consideration of skill (which is definitely true), the gearing requirements for the level of flexibility being talked about are quite prohibitive.

Wukki said...

I am glad someone else finally realizes this. :)

Even if you were able to do all three roles so often that your skill level was near or equal to someone who was a full time tank/dps/healer, the gear given to you would be a waste as you cannot heal yourself while tanking patch. Better to just find a main role and stick with it.

Darraxus said...

I agree that the whining about Dual Spec is ridiculous. If you dont like it, dont pay for it. I cant imagine why the Ancient Gaming Noob would complain as he and his group are extremly casual.

Herc said...

With the influx of epics, I have no doubt you can get most ilvl 213 items but like you mentioned it's almost impossible to be the Master of all specs available to you.

Gear and skill are the roadblocks. and it will be highlighted when Ulduar comes out =P when people realize it's not your Purple Fountain like naxx priority on picking gear would be based on what they need and what they are best at(main spec)

Veneretio said...

I agree with the basic message here of, "If you're worried about Dualspecs, L2P"

However, your idea that it's impossible for someone to be better at 3 roles than someone that just does 1... isn't true unfortunately. There's some people that just are average or even poor at this game and that'll never change.

There are some people that have the ability to adapt amazingly and will put those average folk to shame. Although I get what you're saying.. the amazing people that dedicate themselves to 1 role will be superior to the amazing people that pursue 3.

What I think is kinda funny is how few dpsers realize that a lot of us tanks are just going to go 2 Prot Specs lol.

armagon said...

@Yakra We never let people hearth/portal and be summoned back in TBC and I was very content with our progression of 5/5 4/9 (or was it 5?) - not the people who cleared Sunwell are complaining - such a respec mid-instance wasn't ever considered and I still condemn it.

@Veneratio, as much as I agree with most of your posts - here I don't at all. I can't speak for our progression tanks, but I wouldn't make anyone have 2 slightly different protection specs unless they choose to. Blizzard said they were designing raid encounters as if dualspec didn't exist - so we will bang our hands against the boss until we improve enough to get it down. And not force anyone to give up this (perfectly valid goody of) having an off-raid spec.
Maybe that makes us casuals, but the day I'm forced to have a Murder- and non-Murder-spec (as a Rogue) for different fights, I'm out.

Veneretio said...

@armagon: Oh, I'm not saying you should force or expect your tanks to pick 2 protection specs. I'm not going to make anyone in my guild pick a useful raiding secondary spec regardless of their class.

What I'm saying is, it's going to be done by a lot of Prot Warriors because there's a lot of variation that can be done between 2 Prot Specs.

Hmm... that sounds just like my newest podcast... wait it's not out yet... is it ;)

Chad S. said...


I'm not saying that portal/respec/summoning was widly used, or a good idea for most groups. Just that it existed, and for guilds that were pressing the envelope where having 9 healers on bloodboil and only 6 on RoS was necessary - it happened.

If your with a group that's happy with the level your playing at, that is all well and good.

Arideni said...

The two stances include one picking a spec required for PVE and one for whatever he/she wants to do in their solo time. Or, one could pick to use two different talent builds to maximize efficiency toward a single goal (for example, PVE).

The choice is up to the player, though I'm sure some hardcore guilds will expect their players in certain positions, such as a main tank, to continue to do what is necessary to formulate the backbone of their guild objectives. Of course, players in such a guild will probably do this voluntarily to benefit progression vs. being asked or becoming mandatory.

Anonymous said...

trouble isnt that a hardcore hybrid on his 2nd spec can outdps/heal/tank another hardcore player that is on his mainspec. it will happen, of course, people arent equal, so arent the drops. trouble is casual mainspec-tanks, healers, dps will get owned and lose their spots to hardcore hybrids. for example a druid rolling naxx25 on a steady base will take the MT/MH/DPS spot of some casual 10-man-raider just because he has the better gear and thus will tank/heal/dps better. so hardcore raiders may cheer, but as a casual im scared about losing my spots in naxx/os/maly pugs to 25-man-raiders that can offer any of the 3 components on a better lvl then the casual 10man-dude.

Bent said...

Pure DPS classes can still take advantage of different specs.

A Spec for AE damage or single target.

Everyone will be able to have

A spec with talented group buffs, a spec without depending on group comp.

A spec for some combo of BGs, arena, PvE farming, PvE heroics, PvE raids.

As a tank NOT in a Raiding guild I can't wait for the ability to dual spec. In the raids I do with friends/PuGs there are only a couple spots for Tanks and most raids that are lead by a certain guild sport thier own Tanks. Being able to respec to DPS will give me the chance to still go.

drug said...

I'll have to disagree with people not being able to master more than one spec as well.

I think it would be even more accurate to say that there are good players and bad players, and a good player can easily master two totally different specs while bad players struggle to perform well in one talent tree.

In BC my old guild took shadowpriests no matter how bad they were, just to fill some mana bars. That was bad. Now I see it all swinging in the very opposite direction. A raid leader can just take the 25 best players that are most likely to not stand in the fire or have a stable Internet connection or whatever and let them spec so that the 25 man raid will work.

I agree that if two players of totally equal skill would be compared, one playing one spec for years and the other switching forth and back between two specs, the consistent one might perform better at his game, but not by much. Because lets be honest: WoW is not incredibly hard. And even if you don't play absolutely perfect at your offspec, understanding the boss and acting accordingly sometimes helps too.