Well, GC took a little bit of time out of his holiday weekend to respond to a few more of our comments and give us a little more detail. If you want to see all of the comments I suggest you use a Blue Tracker like MMO-Champion. Here are the highlights.
The Technical Issue:
I know exactly how Nightfall works and how the new set bonus works. They work differently. The reason they work differently is that Nightfall is a talent so it is okay, in our minds, to muck up the spell with a lot of special cases since those cases will largely exist forever. Messing with Starfire to make the tier set work better is unattractive because then the spell is laden with this special-case stuff that will only be relevant for a few months in 2009. Yet we will have to live with the risk of that code breaking or falling out of date forever (or at least as long as WoW endures, which I suspect will be longer than 2009). :).There are a couple of things I take from this quote. First is GC's explanation of the technical issue. It is easy for us as players to think: "You can do it for Nightfall. Why not 4T8." It seems like such a simple fix, but I think their reasoning for not doing it that way makes sense. There is no reason to make the code more complicated for a set bonus that is only going to be used for a couple of months. We also have to remember that even though most people will only be using 4T8 for a couple of months, the code has to stay there forever, because the item will be in game forever.
I make mistakes sometimes, and WoW is a very complex game, but assertions that the players understand the mechanics better than the developers are almost always going to be incorrect. (source)
Secondly, I completely agree that it is dumb for players to assert that they know more about the game technically then GC or any other Blizzard employee. If coding WoW was so easy then there would be dozens of MMO's just like it and just as successful.
That doesn't invalidate our opinions or mean we should shut up. While Blizzard has a lot of very smart people on staff, it is impossible for them to see everything from all angles, but +11 million players are very good at finding the loop holes. We just have to remember to express our opinions appropriately, with numbers and examples. If we habitually fly off the handle they will eventually ignore us.
GC's Take Away:
Ghostcrawler made two comments about the lessons of this thread. Here is the first.
My take home from this thread is not to respond next time. My trying to share some information did nothing to improve the conversation. We could have fixed the bonus and players would have eventually noticed. When we spend time to moderate a thread, that is less time we have to work on the game. (source)
I hope this is just the frustration talking. I think his second comment is the true lesson of the thread.
I constantly learn on these forums that quick answers are seldom sufficient.Here is the true wisdom. As Murmur's pointed out in his apology, much of the emotional response would have been prevented if a few more details were given up front. It sucks for GC, because we players hang on his every word. Having to worry about every little comment you make is probably very stressful. However, I think I speak for most players when I say that the increased interaction with the developers since TBC is one of the best developments in WotLK.
The Status of 4T8:
We have a fix for the current set bonus to make it work the way you imagine it should at a 7 or 8% proc chance. It's our policy not to announce patch dates ahead of time, but it will be long before 3.2. (source)
This is good to hear. I wouldn't expect this to be fixed really soon, but I think it is possible that it could be fixed in the next couple of weeks. My guess is that it will be at least two weeks.
I'll also be running some numbers on what the reduced proc rate would mean. I have some numbers for it at 15%, but obviously those aren't valid any more. However, at 15% the 4T8 was about a 6% increase to DPS, so my guess is that at 7% it will be about a 3% DPS increase. That isn't bad.
The Name Drop:
Blogs like Graylo's had a lot more influence than this thead (even if I did piss him off). :)
Is it sad that I can be won over by a simple name drop? Just kidding. Once again it makes me feel good to know what I am being read by influential people and that they listen to well reasoned arguments.