Patch 3.2.2 has been on the Public Test Realms (PTR) since well before BlizzCon, but so far I’ve not said a word about it. I usually love tracking the progress of the PTR, but between BlizzCon and real-life commitments and distractions, I’ve been remiss about keeping up with this one.
Tonight, however, Blizzard deployed PTR build 10433 — a build that is causing quite a stir among Beast Mastery hunters in particular — and so I thought it was high time to catch up.
Let’s start at the beginning: minor patches like 3.2.2 usually don’t have a lot in the way of new content (compared to major content patches like 3.2), but this one includes a level 80 revamp of the classic Onyxia encounter to celebrate WoW’s five-year anniversary.
As usual, there are a bunch of class and balance tweaks. For hunters, the official PTR notes include only a handful of bug fixes:
- Hunter Tier-9 2-Piece Bonus: Critical damage from Serpent Sting will now work properly with the Mortal Shots and Expose Weakness talents.
- Master’s Call: This ability now correctly removes the snaring component of Infected Wounds, Frostfire Bolt, and Slow.
- Trap Mastery: Tooltip now states the correct amount of snakes summoned.
Real exciting, eh? But there is one data-mined change that is causing some contention. MMO Champion reported today that the latest build includes this change for Beast Mastery:
- The Beast Within now lasts 10 sec (Down from 18 sec) but now also increases all damage you deal by 10% at all time.
- Bestial Wrath now lasts 10 sec. (Down from 18 sec)
Ghostcrawler himself responded almost immediately to a post about this change on the Damage Dealing forum:
I love data-mined patch note day.
It should be no surprise to anyone who has been on these boards for long that we’re trying to chill out abilities that convey offensive and defensive bonuses with the same button press. At the same time, BM damage was a little low and too dependent on the pet. With this change, hopefully, Bestial Wrath becomes more of a defensive ability while taking Beast Within will boost hunter (and just the hunter) damage at all times.
I call it more of a defensive cooldown because it now breaks all CC like a PvP trinket.
For myself, I find Ghostcrawler’s explanation fascinating. I never would have considered Bestial Wrath as a defensive ability.