OK--I must have just been wrong about pre- and post-armor. You're right it would be worthless otherwise.
Are feral tanks the best damage reducers now? Big, slow-hitting boss mob would hit any other tank for 14k, but hits the feral tank for 12.25k? Or do the other tanks have similar always-up reduction values?
I guess Blizzard is expecting us to put damage reduction in favor of some DPS (check for some other classes new abilities, ie PW:Barrage), so we all have needed survivability for Ulduar - I remember Blizzard telling in the past "if you are stacking Stamina or Haste gear, then you are looking forward to Season 6 or Ulduar".
Right now, many classes are already doing some serious damage, and it appears Moonkins are on this list. And the new Ulduar gear may fix this survivability so we can all get back to damage dealing as we were used to.
Still, I am not excited at all for any of the announced changes.
And yes, I am still confident we should get Startall fixed as a hotfix.
Assuming the shield works against spells (the text says "next hit" which is ambiguous) it won't be better against them because a) spells tend to be fewer, larger hits, and b) avoidance won't improve your uptime.
Also treating your yellow and white/maul attacks as a single combined swing timer is not the right way to figure out uptime on this. It's (odds of a crit after you take damage before the next boss swing) to get the shield up, and (odds of the boss dealing damage to you) that it drops again--since it doesn't stack, you can't just use your crit rate and average swing speed to determine net mitigation.
I assumed it wouldn't stack--but I have seen speculation in other threads that it would. Each hit reduces 1 charge, each charge shields up to 25%AP. It seems more likely that it won't stack, however. I think they would have told us the max number of stacks if it did.
So what role do they think we play? Savage Defense seems to be targeted at tanking single, slow-hitting targets. I would also suggest it's targeted at targets that deal spell damage since the shield is more effective against spells than melee because it's most likely pre-armor. Are they trying to make us caster tanks?
Damage shields/blocking is more effective against weak hitting Bosses. The larger the Hit the less of a percentage
is the damage shield. Reducing a 5k hit by 1.5k is way better then 15k->13.5k
One more thing that kinda worries me: it will be MUCH harder to determine the defensive value of an item.
Let's say you have one with lot's of Agi and Haste against one with Crit and AP.
Now you can say: the one with agility is better, because it gives dodge while the second item doesn't give any
With 3.1 that won't be possible any more because all 4 stats offer defensive values...
Savage Defense is pretty much a passive Bear Block which is reliant on both own attack speed and opponent's swing speed, as opposed to opponent's swing speed like Shield Block is. Now all stats will influence a bear's mitigation value (i guess not ArP), even haste is going to play a minor factor in faster autoattack/maul for higher uptime on SD.
This solves a lot of issue with bears just scaling poorly with Rogue gear.
Yes, giving Moonkin Last Stand is clearly just a flavor thing, and definitely not a PvP buff.
True, I was very much exaggerating and a little bit too negative at first about Feral point spending. Thinking more about it, you could do something like this to pick it up, which could be quite nice for the extra armor as well. I'd be slightly concerned about mana, but you could shift points around in Balance for Dreamstate. There was a GC post about eventually deleting or changing CF, so perhaps that could come into play for extra DS points as well.
Haste will still be a marginal stat. It will improve the chances of getting another crit, but the majority of your attack speed and crits will come from GCD attacks, not from autoattack.
I very much like the idea, though having it be more controlled would be welcome. This should be up 100% of the time against multiple mobs, though past a certain point it won't be all that good. Assuming you get a shield every 1.5 seconds from swipe and a shield every 2.5 seconds from maul (this is on the high end), this means in 15 seconds time you will get 16 shields. Assuming 50% avoidance, that means 32 attacks in 15 seconds. That's the maximum shields that you could get in that time, no matter what. As long as you have enough targets to reasonably get a high likelihood of swipe getting one crit, more targets will not help you.
I suspect that this probability will top off around 4 mobs. Which is still far better than it is currently for multimob tankng, but weaker than shield wearers.
Ironically this is almost precisely the recommended change that Kazanir had for druids back in beta: remove all bonus armor from jewelry, give bears a shield based on AP. The outcry at the time was severe, because he was suggesting that 45k health and 40k armor were too powerful and bears needed to be brought in line with other tanks.
The largest issue I see with resto is the lack luster talents deep in the tree. With Uldaar itemization, we have the ability to take more points out of GotEM. Considering this is our major 5/5 talent in our tree, I am curious to see if Blizzard will alter the talent to encourage people to not remove points at higher gear levels. Also, it seems at a glance the change to Replenish will not be enough to encourage point investment.
As long as you have enough targets to reasonably get a high likelihood of swipe getting one crit, more targets will not help you.
More targets will in fact hurt you. If I'm tanking 5 mobs I have a reasonably good chance of Swipe critting on one. Now I get a shield for one of the next attacks, but the other 4 mobs are now hitting me harder due to the armor nerf.
Savage Defense has some interesting implications for feral PVP. Reducing spell damage with that will further improve the usefulness of bear PVP for survivability. A lot depends on the implementation, though; will a tic of a DoT/Bleed remove the buff?
I don't know that it's a good thing to encourage even more bear form use for PVP, but that seems quite likely, if this goes through with no cooldowns. Of course, if the armor reduction is severe, we could end up worse off against fast hitting opponents, especially those with stuns (see: Rogues.)
Probably stating the obvious, but this also draws a more firm line in the sand between bears and cats given that many pure cat ferals don't spec into Protector of the Pack. Less AP, less absorb, less use as a sometimes ot.
Let's make a comparison between Savage Defense and armor. Let's assume that you have 38k armor, 7k AP, and that the boss hits for 40k pre-mitigation. 38k armor reduces that hit to 12,179. Now let's say that you had a Savage Defense shield up, which knocks off 1750 damage, and the final hit was 12,179. In that case the original hit was 13,929, which occurs if you have 31,136 armor. That means the shield was worth 6,864 armor. Of course, it's less reliable than straight armor, but it's quite powerful and probably works on spells too.
Assuming 38k armor and 7k AP the shield would be equivalent to 4716 armor not 6864.
Assuming 38k armor DR is --> 0.695524847
Boss hits for --> 40000
Damage reduction --> 27820.99387
Hits for --> 12179.00613
SD is 25% AP --> 1750
Hits for after SD shield--> 10429.00613
Total DR --> 29570.99387
As a percent --> 0.739274847
Worth in Armor -> 4716