No threat, tanks, we’re …

If you heard a massive screeching sound last night, that was the sound of the WoW juggernaut being forced into another incredibly sharp turn, threatening to topple over, with Ghostcrawler leaning on the wheel shouting “Stay on target! Stay on target!”. Or something similar.

Yep, it’s been announced that threat is effectively being phased out as a mechanic in WoW. In a completely unprecedented move, Blizzard have announced this was happening, then promptly hotfixed it into the servers – so as of now, tank threat has approximately doubled.

The blogosphere, needless to say, had some reactions:

  • Cynwise has three “crackpot theories” – which aren’t that crackpot at all – as to why this change came as a sudden hotfix: “Blizzard’s PR department keeps tabs on the industry, and there was an EA press conference today. Some pretty substantial stuff got announced – more SW:TOR demos, ME3 trailers, a new MMO, FIFA 2012, lots of stuff. Blizzard had two things in the can to keep WoW players focused on WoW today – RealID cross-server grouping to remain free, and massive tanking changes. Guess what the WoW community is talking about today?”

  • Tobold thinks this is a case of distributing responsibility more evenly: “If a large enough number of players would have actually liked to shoulder a higher responsibility, they had 7 years to express that by taking on one of the roles that tended to get all the blame in a group, tank or healer.”

  • Looking for More is unequivocally in favour of the changes: “Look, any hardcore raid tank can tell you the real measure of a tank is doing the fight mechanics and using their mitigation right. Threat is BASIC. Nerfing threat does not nerf the really hard parts of tanking.”

  • Spinks is somewhat confused at some of the statements Ghostcrawler has made: “several of the ranged dps classes have aggro dumps, as well as two of the melee. If it’s bad for one class to have to use that ability, why is it OK for the others?”

  • And Azeroth Hit Me has some ideas for how tanks could work now threat is no longer an issue: “Instead of just moving the boss/adds out of bad, perhaps there is a bonus for moving them into certain zones, like air strike targets, or runes they have to be moved onto in a certain order, but the runes position are random and change each battle.”

What do you think? Do you love the changes? Do you think there are Cunning Reasons behind the hotfix? Or are you one of the (very rare, as far as I can tell) people who aren’t so thrilled?

All quotes taken directly from their respective posts.