Items and Equipment, PvP
The start of Season 2 Arena brought with it new sets of Merciless Gladiator armor, modelled after Tier 5 armor graphics in presumably more intimidating color schemes. As with Season 1, the Merciless Gladiator Gloves each have a special effect that — at least for many classes — make them a “must have” for PvP. This is not the case for druids, however.
As a frame of reference, here are some of the effects available to the various classes:
- Hunter: Increases the damage done by your Multi-Shot by 4%.
- Mage: Improves the range of your Fire Blast spell by 5 yards.
- Paladin 1: Increases the critical effect chance of your Flash of Light by 2%.
- Paladin 2: Increases the Holy damage bonus of your Judgement of the Crusader by 20.
- Priest: Increases the duration of your Psychic Scream spell by 1 sec.
- Rogue: Causes your Deadly Throw ability to interrupt spellcasting and prevent any spell in that school from being cast for 3 sec.
- Shaman 1: Increases the damage done by your Lightning Shield by 8%.
- Shaman 2: Increases the critical effect chance of your Lesser Healing Wave by 2%.
- Shaman 3: Improves the range of all Shock spells by 5 yards.
- Warrior: Hamstring Rage cost reduced by 3.
- Warlock 1: Gives you a 50% chance to avoid interruption caused by damage while casting Fear.
- Warlock 2: Gives you a 50% chance to avoid interruption caused by damage while casting Searing Pain.
Going down the list, hunters get a 4% damage boost to one of their primary PvP abilities (Multi-Shot), mages get a 25% range increase to an insta-cast nuke (albeit, the benefit is less to Arcane and Frost mages), paladins get a nice crit boost to their primary heal (crit > all for paladin healers), priests get a 12.5% duration increase to their CC ability, rogues get an amazing anti-caster addition to Deadly Throw, shamans get a 25% range increase to all shocks, warriors get a 30% cost reduction to their anti-caster Hamstring, and warlocks get either 50% chance to avoid damage interruption to Fear or Searing Pain.
What do druids get?
- Druid: Reduces the cast time of your Cyclone spell by 0.1 sec.
That’s a 6.67% casting time decrease on the recently nerfed spell, Cyclone. And this lackluster, practically insulting set bonus is the same for all three sets, including ferals who can’t cast Cyclone in the form they rely upon to PvP.
To address this problem, each of the three druid spec-specific sets should have a clearly delineated gloves bonus that is more in line with the potency of that available to other classes. It should be obvious from the gloves bonus alone which spec the item is intended to best serve. Here are some possibilities:
- Restoration: 10% resistance to dispel of Rejuvenation and Regrowth, 25% resistance to dispel of Innervate, 10% resistance to Silence effects, or 10% bonus to the bloom effect of Lifebloom
- Balance: 33% chance to resist interruption by damage while casting Wrath, -15 seconds on the cooldown of Nature’s Grasp, or an additional 0.5 seconds on the duration of Cyclone (making the final cast last 2 seconds instead of 1.5)
- Feral: -10 seconds on the cooldown of Bash, 1 additional combo point awarded from Pounce, or immunity to Hibernate (say the gloves make their paws too itchy to be put to sleep)
The above suggestions are in line with those bonuses available to other classes and would improve the arena performance of druids from all specs. On the other hand, if our set bonus remains as it is, it will only reiterate the idea that Blizzard expects all druids (feral included) to be little more than Cyclone-spam bots in Arena.