Posted by: Kro | April 7, 2010

Hero Class? Demoted!

Blood is the tank tree, frost is the dw/spell damage/runic power tree, and unholy is the disease/minion tree.


We may as well toss the Death Knight experience out the door. If this was a few days previous I’d have thought this a perfectly acceptable April fools joke.

With the removal of blood dps, unholy tank, and frost tank specs we are seeing what I imagine will be the last of the interesting DK. The flexibility and variability of the Death Knight is what brought me to the class. Keeping up with the most recent dps or tank specs, practicing and finding your own suitable spec for either role, mixing it up for different patches or different bosses really is (was) the DK’s drawing feature.

As someone who has spent more time than any other specs as a blood tank and unholy dps I’m largely unaffected. I’m still mad as hell though because I feel ripped off.

I was blood dps to start, and then frost 2h, then 32/39 dw unholy, then diseaseless blood and frost 2h again before ulduar. I was a blood tank for hard modes in ulduar, trying out frost tank for hodir, and making odd jumbled up unholy specs for firefighter just as I did for sarth 3d tanking. I’ve played dw frost, unholy oblit and dw unholy dps specs in ToC and always staying competitive. Keeping up with the latest theorycrafting and shifting specs was part of the challenge of the class and really set the best apart.

By regressing the DK class back to the same standard as classes designed five years previous they will be implementing an easy fix but a completely uninteresting and disheartening one.

For those who would say oh QQ you can’t have 6 specs, or nom nom DK tears, sure it may seem unfair but in actuality the different tanking and dps specs play so differently from each other that stripping any one of them is just over the top. It’s akin to saying.. “Shamans will no longer have a resto healing spec, elemental will be the new healing spec and it will focus on absorbing like disc priests and resto will be a new melee spec in addition to enhance focusing on 2h weapons.” I wonder if current Elemental and Resto Shamans would readily accept this change. How about we nuke the fire mage spec and give them a whole new tree that plays completely different. I’m sure no one cares about the fire mage play style and we can just make it evaporate. This is how all the blood dps, frost tank, and unholy tank death knights feel right about now.

The consolation prize I suppose for gutting our class is that everyone else can now tell at a glance if a DK is using the right spec. There will be less under informed DKs running around with last month or last years spec. No more arguing in LFD pugs about which is the tank tree.

It’s easy to say “I’m not a DK I don’t care” or “I always tank as blood and dps dw as frost so it doesn’t effect me”, but when the majority doesn’t give an S when the minority is slighted, you can expect reciprocation when your class is on the chopping block.
This change won’t affect me much, I’ll gladly tank as Blood and DPS as 2h unholy, but I won’t sit back and pretend I’m ok with it.

If they did this at the start of WotLK, it would be fine. If DKs were still dominating arena, raid damage meters, and the premiere (handicapped if you didn’t have one) tank, id be fine with the change. DKs were inappropriately a “Hero Class” to start, but now that they are finally in a state where each spec is very similar in tanking and damaging output, I can’t believe they are chopping off half our viability and for those who exclusively played the three specs going dodo, 100% of their class.

Now that I’ve got that out of my system, I can go over some of the highlights of this.

The mastery system will be easier to keep balanced for death knights.

Those DK’s who had a hard time convincing their raid leaders or pugs that their spec is viable won’t have as much of an issue (because there will be no choice of spec)

Keeping DK balanced as tanks and not wildly above or behind the curve will hopefully not be an issue.

Small consolation for more homogenization. Why don’t we just make every class have one tank, one dps, and one healing spec and then give them all the same spells. It sure would be an easy fix to promote balance.



  1. RIP Blood. You will be missed.

    Off-Topic – 2-Hander Frost with 20% haste is actually enjoyable. 🙂

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