Unfortunately, Strength of Earth being a raid buff was deemed unnecessary, which more or less fucks everyone else. I still can't wrap my head around any reasoning that isn't just stupidity.
Where did you hear this? It would boggle my mind if this ends up true, and would be a massive pain for making group setups.
I'm hoping Wrath raid encounters will be more friendly to a greater number of melee. They are adding a pure melee hero-class, so raids should designed to be able to accommodate more melee. Instead of putting the hunters in a tank or caster group, you could instead build a pure melee and a melee+hunters group. Take these two groups for example:
Feral druids synergize very effectively with survival hunters. The crit aura leads to more expose weakness uptime and more hunting party procs from the hunter, and the feral druid gets more damage from energy regeneration effects than anything else. Currently feral druids get about 60-65% of their damage from energy effects, so even small increases are a huge dps gain. The mutilate rogues also gain more energy from Leader of the Pack through their new talent.
In the pure melee group you'd have the retribution paladin providing improved retribution aura, as well as the blood knight giving everyone 10% extra strength. If strength of earth ends up a group totem for some reason, you'd need a shaman for both groups optimally.
Gonna comment on the DK abomination strength proc. It's a 50% chance on Blood Strikes(which you can get 2 every 10secs, when you're not refreshing plaguestrike every 20secs assuming you get disease duration talent, so 3every 20secs). What that means is the uptime is limited. You can force a 100%uptime with Obliterate, but then the unholy DK gets his diseases eaten by obliterate, so in this case, it's ebon plague/crypt fever that's not up 100% of the time. Assuming you run with those 2 types of DK for these two roles, you'll probably end up having to do the math depending on how many casters you have and the classes in the blood dk group to find out which gives the biggest upgrade. My bet would be on the 3%spell raidwide debuff though. Meaning Blood DK won't have 100%uptime on abom, meaning they might not be as desired for this specific role.
However, you forgot Hysteria and Blood Mark in the blood contribution. Hysteria is a +20% physical damage buff for 30secs every 2mins on a member of your choice(probably a rogue or a hunter, but could be used on a tank for threat maybe?), and Mark of Blood is a 2%total hp heal on the tank everytime the boss hits him, for 30secs on 3min cooldown. Also as a general DK debuff, Icy Chill reduces spellcasting and ranged attack speed by 15%. On specific fights it'll be very useful I guess.
Are has it been stated by a dev that SoE was rolled decided to be party only or is it just not raid wide on beta currently. Because I was under the impression that the raid wide effects weren't active yet on beta.
Unfortunately, we have 5 healing trees amongst 4 classes, and 4-6 more tanking trees amongst 4 classes. The ratios do not match up with current encounter requirements (6-9 healers, 1-4 tanks), resolving those disparities will be paramount when it comes to raid composition.
The devs have said they want to bring it down to 5 healers, and I think it might be possible. For example, using my current gear, just from having the WotLK talents my HPS as a resto shaman should nearly double with the expansion talents (and that's without knowing what the final values of earthliving or flametongue are).
I'm guessing the ideal setup will be one of each of the 5 healing specs. Given you're probably going to want one of each other the other hybrid specs as well, this still makes the healing classes have 3 instead of 2.5 members, but it's not as bad as it currently is. That still leaves you free to take two of each of the other class, and 3 of one of them.
My impression is that Icy Chill will function much the same way the Paladin Ret talent does on bosses, IE, not at all. (With a few exceptions...). I'm guessing it will be the same with the Ebon Plague and the previous talent, but it's added in anyway.
Obviously those talents will be pending actually getting to a raid level boss in WoTLK.
Edit: SoE added (since somehow I missed it) as a desire for Melee DPS...Agil and Strength for Druids / Rogues / Enhancement? It sounds like a massive desire to me.
It was not there prior, I added it after reading his post. I'm trying to keep it up to date as the changes come out or someone mentions something missing.
It seems like it some ways it will be harder to add groups together. I do like that Blizzard seems to be trying to allow encounters to be more dirven by roll and abilities rather then group stacking (Like the kind of insane stacking you need for Brutalis). We'll see how it goes.
Being as Blizzard is ironing out many changes still, as I see new information on the Beta updates, I'll try to get it in. If I'm missing something, please let met know.
Well, you didn't really include healing priests much at all. New deep Discipline talent "Grace" reduces damage taken by the target by 2% (stacks 3 time) and also increases healing taken by the target by the same amount. I believe this falls somewhere in between Desire and Need but probably closer to Need. There isn't much in the game that can touch 6% reduced damage on a tank and 6% more healing.
Also the new 51 holy talent "Guardian Spirit" is basically a castable "Cheat Death" talent for tanks (and everyone). Increases healing taken by the target by 40% for 10 seconds and will prevent the target from dying for one hit AND heal the target for 10% if that occurs. I'd rate this one up there with Desire.
Sorry if I missed these being included but I did a search of the OP and didn't find them.
Edit: I don't think I see Misery up there either, that's pretty much a Need for raids (at least any with a caster group, so all of them), especially with DKs doing spell damage and melee damage, that's another class in the raid that will benefit from this buff (both while tanking and dpsing). Shadow Weaving goes hand in hand with Misery and any Shadow Priest will have both talents anyway but SW will be more beneficial in WotLK with a DK in the raid for the same reason.
Edit2: Just a tangent. I realized I just basically said that WotLK raids will require a Disc priest. Not a fake 23/x/x alt that you log out in Sunwell and buff the group before a Brut or M'uru attempt either. I'm kind of reminded of the days where I was the only full Disc priest (buff bitch) in a raid and Spirit was the 31 point talent...
Edit3: Speaking of Spirit... it's not on there either, and is definitely a Desire for casters, especially Priests, Druids, Mages, and to a lesser extent Paladins and Shaman (for the spell power) and Warlocks (!) too.