Fourth specs again

It’s been almost a year since I blogged, and apologies to all, I did take a break from WoW in that time period. But fear not, I’m back. This week’s Community Blog topic is about fourth specs for each class. Interestingly, that was the last post I made on this blog before I took a break. However, instead of just regurgitating what I said about what fourth specs should be, I will try to carve out new ideas. In the process of doing this, I’m also mindful of gear type distribution. For example, right now only holy paladin can wear intellect plate. This fourth spec is an excellent chance to solve those uneven gear distribution. Although I admit, with the proliferation of personal loot system, this is less of an issue now than it did in Wrath and Cata. Still, if an intellect plate drops and your guild doesn’t have a holy paladin (or even a paladin), it’s sharded.

  • Mage. This is a tough one. If it were really up to me, I’d actually make Frost a tanking spec, and introduce a new dps spec. I don’t know what exactly, since their specializations seem to be based on magic types. But regardless, frost is already in a sense THE tanking spec for soloing mages out there. We can base the tanking mechanics on avoidance, the justification being that the enemy is too slowed by cold so that it’s easier for us to dodge.
  • Rogue. Evasion tanking, which they kinda did. It would share all the tanking leathers with druids.
  • Warlock. I would say just split out the demonology tree into demon-focused tree and demon-form tree. Just change the name into something like “Demon Mastery” and “Possession” or something. They are thematically different anyways. The demon-focused tree should still be your primary soloing tree, akin to hunter’s BM tree right now, and your demon form tree would give you a permanent demon form (something like bear form) that is well suited for tanking. When you’re in demon form, you can wear plate, but your primary stat will still be intellect. This would also solve the current intellect plate problem.
  • Hunter. I’d say I wanna be able to tank with the pets, but that’s probably too far fetched. The other thing to note is that druidism and ranger skills are not that different. They’re both very nature based. So if you want to introduce a healing spec for hunter, it could be based on the animal products. Say apply bear gland extract here to recover x HP, and let your vipers bite you for GOOD toxins to work, restoring y HP. This should introduce a new intellect mail class, which currently only belongs to Shaman.
  • Warrior. I don’t think they’ll ever get a healing spec. It’s just too weird. Maybe they’ll get another tanking spec, and this time it’s based on a 2h weapon. Right now all the tanking 2handers belong to blood DK.
  • Paladin. Back then I rooted for a caster spec, built around Holy Shock. But the more I think about it, the weirder it gets. It’s simply not part of their “flavor.” Maybe they should get another dps spec, still wearing intellect plate, but it will be melee based. So no, they’re not going to nuke from afar the way mages and warlocks do, but they’re going to SWING their swords, but a large part of their damage is holy, and it’s modified by their intellect.
  • Priest. This is where they should get a holy dps caster spec. Discipline priest already does that with penance and smite, just make them hit harder and introduce a few more damage spells.
  • DK. A healing spec. A lot of what they do is already healing: self healing, rezzing, preventing damage. This could be interesting because instead of mana, their main resources would be runes and mana. (Runic power would not work well with a healing class, because a resource that starts at zero can’t be longevity-limiting). This is similar to how monks suddenly use mana when healing.
  • Shaman should get a tanking spec. This way, each spec can be attuned to one of the elements: earth for tanking, air for melee, fire for caster, water for healing. There are already tools in place to increase threat generation, they just need to add more totems and spells that support a complete tanking toolbox.
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