Why the Blacksmithing Weapon Change has Melee Players Upset

Why the Blacksmithing Weapon Change has Melee Players Upset

In the most recent update to the Burning Crusade Classic Beta, Drakefist Hammer is now listed as a main hand only weapon, no longer being dual wieldable as a one-handed weapon, reverting to its pre-2.4.2 state. Many melee players are not happy about this and we explain why this is a controversial change.

Ouro deleting both of his Drakefist Hammers, in protest.

Patch 2.4.2

In Patch 2.4.2, one small line in the Patch Notes, which seems pretty innocuous at first glance is the root of all of this drama…

Most Main-Hand weapons are now One-Hand weapons.

This, of course, applies to a ton of weapons, including the Blacksmithing crafted weapons such as Drakefist Hammer, Dragonmaw, and Dragonstrike.

Patch 2.3.0

In Patch 2.3.0, Weapon Expertise was introduced, as players were still using Weapon Skill all the way up to Zul’Aman’s release. On top of that, another significant change to items came in this patch for bonus Healing gear. In Patch 2.3.0, bonus Healing on gear was given a portion of that stat as bonus Spell Damage.

All items have had their bonuses to Weapon Skill Rating converted to a new stat called Weapon Expertise Rating. Each point of Weapon Expertise reduces the chance for your attacks to be dodged or parried by .25%.

Healing: Almost all items and enchantments that provide bonus healing now also provide a smaller number (approximately 1/3) of bonus spell damage. There are a few items and enchantments where this was not possible, such as random-stat items and Zul’Gurub enchantments, but this is now the case on virtually all other items.

Patch 2.3.0 also brought with it the Leatherworking Drums change, providing a massive boost to these consumables for Leatherworkers and completely changing the meta for high end raiding in Burning Crusade.

Greatly increased the radius of the Drums of Battle, Drums of Restoration, Drums of Speed, and Drums of War.

Removed the casting time from the Drums of Battle, Drums of Restoration, Drums of Speed, and Drums of War.

Patch 2.1.0

In Patch 2.1.0, Blizzard introduces the epic Engineering Goggle recipes, which are Best in Slot for many classes.

11 new epic goggles have been introduced at 350 engineering skill and are available from the trainer. They range from cloth to plate, and have a variety of stats to appeal to most talent specs.

Why is Blizzard doing Profession Progressive Itemization?

We already know the Engineering Goggles aren’t in the game and Blizzard has no idea what to do with Leatherworking Drums, but at this point it seems Blizzard won’t be doing a full “progressive itemization” but is doing it for Professions? All Healing Gear has bonus spell damage, Weapon Expertise exists on gear, but the following three points are true:

  • Engineering Goggles not at release
  • Leatherworking Drums staying bad until Zul’Aman, where “Greater Drum” recipes will drop
  • Blacksmithing Weapons Main Hand only

To be fair, this is much more authentic to the actual Burning Crusade experience. Patch 2.4.2 came out on May 13, 2008, a mere 5 months before the Pre-Patch of Wrath of the Lich King. For 16 months, the Blacksmithing Hammers were main hand only, that is a fact. But the question remains, if Blizzard wants players to have an authentic experience, why not go full progressive? Progressive talents, items, spells, everything. Why only pick and choose certain things to be progressive?

How is this different than what Blizzard did in Classic?

Technically, Blizzard did adhere to profession progressive itemization. Things like Pattern: Flarecore Leggings and Plans: Nightfall coming out in Phase 3, Plans: Titanic Leggings in Phase 5, and of course all the Nature and Frost Resistance patterns. Why this feels different, all of those items came out in their final 1.12.1 state, even though they released in their appropriate phases. Why isn’t this the case with Drakefist Hammer?

In Classic, Blizzard wanted to release items in their appropriate Phase, but everything in the game was in its final 1.12.1 state, even when it didn’t make sense. The most common example being Bonereaver’s Edge, which is just an absolutely mind-boggling insane item to have available on Day 1 of Classic World of Warcraft. Blizzard did share their philosophy on this, explaining that “This means that while content will be unlocked progressively to allow for each raid tier to shine, systems such as class design, battleground mechanics, and stats on existing items will all be set to their final 1.12 conditions.”

Blizzard was pretty strict about never having a single item change in Classic World of Warcraft between phases. Does that mean Drakefist Hammer, Dragonmaw, and Dragonstrike will never be dual wieldable?

Or could this all be a mistake?

Blizzard did say they want Bosses to be in their pre-nerfed state for Burning Crusade Classic, is it possible that Blizzard “uploaded” a previous Patch’s data to the Beta servers, such as Patch 2.3 or 2.4? If so, could this Drakefist Hammer change be sort of a leftover from that and just an oversight?

There still hasn’t been a Blue Post from Blizzard about these changes, so hopefully we get one today before the raid testing begins. Maybe Ouro deleted his hammers a bit too soon…

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