Patch 3.3.3 Notes, A.K.A. Blizzard Loves Me

As of this writing, the Patch 3.3.3 notes have some pretty delicious changes for Death Knights, especially of the Frost DW variety. Go on, take a look at them. I'll wait.

Done? Excellent.

There are three of these that I find particularly exciting for DW Frost in general and my playstyle in particular:

This is just a nice, straightforward DPS buff for DW. Any attack based on weapon damage, including some of our staples like Obliterate and Frost Strike, get a nice little buff from this talent by working alongside Threat of Thassarian. This will also buff threat generation for tanks as Nerves of Cold Steel was already a staple of DW tanking specs.

  • Icy Touch: This ability now causes a very high amount of threat while the death knight is in Frost Presence.

The implications of this are obvious, targeted at tanks of any spec. One of our lead-off spells, and a ranged one at that, now generates extra threat when in Frost Presence. I see this as a sign that Blizzard is trying to move people away from the single-disease Glyph of Howling Blast tanking style that's become popular of late. When single- or no-disease rotations have become popular in the past Blizzard has made changes to make them less desirable, and they seem to be continuing to assert that a two-disease (or three-disease for Unholy) rotation is the way they intend the class to play.

  • Improved Icy Talons: This effect is now passive instead of being a proc. The self haste buff remains unchanged.

  • Glyph of Disease: When this glyph causes Frost Fever to be refreshed, it will now also trigger a refresh of Icy Talons. (This is further down under the "Items" header.)
Now, the first of these two changes seems to negate the second, but a blue post has since explained that the glyph change was implemented before they decided to phase out ability-procced raid buffs across a number of classes. What this effectively does is make Glyph of Disease viable for Frost DKs who were only loved for their ability to keep Improved Icy Talons up for a raid group. I've spoken before of my fondness for Glyph of Disease for keeping your diseases up at a minimal cost, and this will enable you to do that without getting chewed out by your raid leader. I also note the second change because it shows that this is something Blizzard intends for us to be able to do rather than just a nice side-effect of the change to ability-procced buffs.

Of course, this is all subject to change, and I assure you if it does I'll let you know with a nice round of QQing. In the meantime, I'll be keeping my fingers crossed that this goes live.

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