UPDATE: Lore has confirmed on the official forums and on twitter that a fix for this bug is in the works. Lore’s 2nd post about how this bug may have fallen through the cracks is worth reading as well. That said I stand by my comments in this post on the issues with Blizzard’s new communication policy.
UPDATE 2: It looks like ruptures from an assassination rogue also trigger this bug so if you are going to run multiple rogues you should probably run combat/sub to avoid this bug.
UPDATE 3: According to Lore the bug is fixed.
There is a bug with subtlety right now that depresses the damage of a sub rogue if you have more than one of them in a raid group. This bug is important, it is notable on its own, it’s a substantial dps loss and it explains a ton of things but that’s not why I’m making this blog post. For most bugs like this I’d toss off a couple tweets, make a forum post or two and call it good but not with this bug. This bug showcases many of the problems with Blizzard’s new communication policy in Warlords and it’s time to talk about them.
The bug itself is pretty simple, if you have two subtlety rogues only one of them is getting sanguinary veins. Only the rogue that cast the most recent rupture or glyphed hemorrhage gets SV, the other rogue simply deals -20% dps. This means if you have two sub rogues on the same encounter on average they are each doing 10% less damage than they should be. If you have three sub rogues in your raid group you are losing 13.3% from each rogue.
Looking at logs it’s pretty easy to see this bug in action. Here Ninjablaze and I are both naked using grey daggers. At this point in the logs both us have rupture up and my rupture is the most recent. You’ll notice that before the bolded line where Ninja refreshes rupture, my rupture and melee attacks do ~25% more damage, 871 vs 697, 626 vs 500. Now look at what happens immediately after Ninja refreshes rupture, the situation switches: now Ninja is out damaging me by exactly the same margin.
00:01:58.496 Fierydemise Rupture Raider’s Training Dummy Tick 871
00:01:58.899 Ninjablaze Melee Raider’s Training Dummy 500
00:01:59.866 Fierydemise Melee Raider’s Training Dummy 626
00:02:00.083 Ninjablaze Rupture Raider’s Training Dummy Tick 697
00:02:00.584 Ninjablaze Melee Raider’s Training Dummy 498
00:02:01.194 Raider’s Training Dummy’s Rupture is refreshed by Ninjablaze
00:02:01.586 Fierydemise Melee Raider’s Training Dummy 501
00:02:02.156 Ninjablaze Rupture Raider’s Training Dummy Tick 871
00:02:02.312 Ninjablaze Melee Raider’s Training Dummy 624
00:02:02.412 Fierydemise Rupture Raider’s Training Dummy Tick 698
00:02:03.317 Fierydemise Melee Raider’s Training Dummy 499
00:02:04.016 Ninjablaze Melee Raider’s Training Dummy 627
00:02:04.161 Ninjablaze Rupture Raider’s Training Dummy Tick 871
00:02:04.475 Fierydemise Rupture Raider’s Training Dummy Tick 697
Note: These logs have been trimmed for readability, the full section of interest can be found here.
Despite being very easy to see when looking at logs carefully this bug is devilishly hard to find. Unless you carefully walk through the log looking at what happens around bleed applications from each player you probably aren’t going to find it. Just looking at trends, it looks like the results of this bug will look very much like random fight-to-fight variance. As far as I can tell this bug was almost entirely unknown within the rogue community. As recently as two weeks ago Method was using two sub rogues for farm and the current world #6 guild, From Scratch, used double sub rogues on Mythic BRF progression.
Most people are probably looking at 10% thinking it’s a big number, but before we move on lets put 10% in perspective. 10% dps is about what you get from upgrading every single piece of gear you have by 10 ilvls, its bigger than almost every T17 set bonus and if you had a <1% wipe on Mythic Butcher you can blame this bug. If your guild ran double multiple sub rogues on Mythic Ko’ragh like almost every mythic guild in the world, you experienced this bug. If your guild had a low percent wipe on Gruul or Oregorger this past week with two sub rogues, again you can thank Blizzard.
The Real Problem
As I said at the top, the fact that this bug exists doesn’t really bother me. Bugs happen, I get that. The real problem is how I came to find out about this bug. I did not discover this bug. A rogue who wishes to remain anonymous, we’ll call him Jack, brought this bug to my attention on Friday since it hadn’t been fixed. Jack told me he originally discovered this bug in mid December while his guild was working on Mythic Butcher. Then Jack did exactly what I suspect Blizzard wants players to do, he didn’t go running to the forums to make a “Blizz hates rogues!!!!!!” thread, he put in a bug report using the official in game tool. A few weeks later he followed up, he tested again to see if SV was still bugged, he found that it was and put in another bug report. Finally this past week, over 6 weeks after his first bug report he put in a 3rd bug report with data showing the bug existed and seeing no results, he contacted me.
If multiple bug reports over a several week period is not enough to get a bug fixed then what is? To use an old unix joke, are the in game bug reports sent directly to /dev/null? This bug will probably be fixed by the end of the week now that someone with a louder voice is raising a stink about it but that shouldn’t be necessary. I get that Blizzard probably gets a ton of bug reports through the in-game tool and many of them are nonsensical or not actually bugs, but if they don’t have sufficient staff to look through the in game bug reports then why does the tool exist? Maybe Jack should have submitted a bug report on the bug report forum, but if that’s the case why does the official battle.net support site say to use the in-game feature?
The issue Jack had is representative of a disturbing trend I’ve been seeing since Warlords launched. It isn’t enough to find a bug and report it. To actually get something fixed you need to bring that bug to a prominent community member who has the developers’ ear or can raise hell or your behalf. This fits into a complaint I’ve made many times about the new Warlords communication model. In previous expansions you could tell the developers were listening, either because they’d respond on the official forums or because you had a direct line to them via twitter. Now it feels like every avenue to the developers is mediated by community managers who may not have enough information to properly judge the quality or accuracy of some feedback. In this environment the best approach to getting issues addressed appears to be sheer quantity of noise rather than skill or intelligence in argumentation.
I don’t know how to fix these communication issues, managing a large community is hard but I hope Blizzard reconsiders their current very locked down approach to player communication. It may be easier for them but its bad for the community and leads to an unproductive, adversarial relationship between the developers and the playerbase.