The Gushing Wounds and Versatile Corruption Nerfs - A PvP Perspective
With the recent nerf to
and the upcoming nerf to
, many players will be wondering how this affects them. In this article, Joefernandes analyzes the impact these changes will have on PvP.
have been popular Corruptions for many classes. We’ve come to a point where players could grab a bunch of them and showcase their true power. Gushing Wounds costs 15 Corruption, meaning it was by far the most cost-effective DPS gain per Corruption point. Some players started to have around 5-6 Gushing Wounds pieces on their gear, which would usually generate around 40-50% of their damage done when looking at damage meters. This, of course, is an absurd number which can demotivate a lot of players when fighting against a class and realizing you’re dying to someone simply because of Gushing Wounds. In response to this, the Warcraft devs have decided to nerf this Corruption by 35%, which will mean big changes for a few specializations. Versatile, costing 20 Corruption, was also low cost for its power and when stacked, you could easily achieve around 50% or more Versatility depending on your gear and sockets. Although the damage increase was not as much as Gushing Wounds, the powerful aspect of this Corruption was that it made any spec much more durable as these Corruptions reduce damage done, especially when paired with
Conflict and Strife
. As a Warrior with 48% Versatility, I actually take less damage when I'm in a Kidney Shot stun in Battle Stance, compared to not being stunned and in Defensive Stance. This is entirely due to stacking Versatile and using Conflict and Strife as a Major Essence. I can imagine this would feel unrewarding as the opposition and frustrating to play against, making it feel like you’re unable to get a kill until deep dampening stages of an arena game. This is why I believe the nerfs on Versatile were also warranted, although I'm not sure if it will be enough to force players to switch off this Corruption for reasons I will explain below.
Will Gushing Wounds and Versatile Still Be Good?
This might be your first question if your character is already decked out with these Corruptions. For Gushing Wounds, a 35% nerf to damage that makes up 50% of your damage could still have value for some classes. However, some specs such as Elemental Shamans and Unholy Death Knights were essentially made by this Corruption. These specs were only shown in high competitive arena gameplay when they had access to Gushing Wounds, otherwise they were too weak without it and would have lackluster pressure. This nerf will hurt them the most as without this Corruption, they may not be able to generate the pressure they want and classes such as Fire Mages, Destruction Warlocks, Arms Warriors, and Windwalker Monks will easily replace them, as they are better versions of the specs in nearly every way. The strong classes such as Demon Hunters and Assassination Rogues will still be hit by this nerf but since their class is already strong, they won’t feel the nerf quite as much and will possibly just resort to
s isn’t as strong.
Surprisingly enough though, Gushing Wounds isn’t actually the most used Corruption even pre-nerf for most classes. Most classes stack their gear with the
Corruption. As mentioned before, the combination of this Corruption with Conflict and Strife is extremely hardy when facing specs that use a lot of stuns, making you absurdly durable within them when you’re hovering around 50% or more Versatility. The good thing about Versatile % stacking is that it has allowed other specs to surge in popularity.
have been very weak specs for a long time in BfA but this Corruption has brought them back to life, making them playable at high rating. It is nice to see that off-brand specs can be utilized due to Corruption gear. Although, much like with Gushing Wounds, it makes popular specs even stronger and borderline unkillable for some compositions.
, Mages, and Warlocks come to mind - when playing with full Versatility gear they can be extremely difficult to kill and make you feel like there is no win in sight.
Nerfing this Corruption is justified, however fixing the
Conflict and Strife bug
has indirectly buffed Versatility. For quite some time, a lot of competitors have known that this Essence wasn’t working with all stuns, meaning that you wouldn’t gain the double Versatility effect from being in certain stuns; such as
, to name a few. Fixing this Essence will not only nerf the specs and compositions around these stuns, but it now makes Versatility even more beneficial, giving you more durability with every stun on you. I believe this will mean Versatility stacking remains a good strategy for most classes, especially the ones that revolve around surviving and winning the game at later stages by attrition. Against compositions such as Rogue/Mage/Priest or Jungle Cleave (Feral Druid/Hunter/Discipline Priest), having this
stacked with Conflict and Strife will be hugely beneficial as you mainly just need to focus on surviving and will win when the Priest runs out of mana. Outside of these two compositions, most other compositions play for dealing maximum pressure and surviving well through damage, which can be quite boring to play or watch especially when the games can last from 10-15 minutes. Unfortunately, most other compositions don’t have the toolkit to play as aggressively as RMP or Jungle and will rely on this defensive gameplay and Versatile stacking so they can live through the enemy team's offensive setups with more ease. Nerfing the Versatile Corruption basically makes it better for the offensive compositions, but the Conflict and Strife fix will be a crucial change, and most likely a nerf for the Jungle Cleave.
Which Classes Are These Corruptions Still Good For?
Gushing Wounds was basically only best for Death Knight specs,
- and could still be a viable option when playing compositions or matchups where you need extra pressure for kills. If you feel like Gushing Wounds pressure isn't needed, you can probably resort to
or maybe even experiment with
Ultimately, I believe
stacking will remain the best option because the Conflict and Strife bug being fixed means it will work on every stun rather than half of them. You’ll be more vulnerable during the stuns that Conflict and Strife worked for in the past (such as
) but remain more durable against the stuns it didn’t work for, which probably saves Versatile's place as the best Corruption. This Corruption was literally used by every other specialization not mentioned above, however specs like Holy Paladin could favor
now instead, as well as other classes possibly experimenting with and using this Corruption, which could be favorable for cooldown-dependent classes!
About the Author
Joe ‘Joefernandes’ Fernandes was a European and BlizzCon Champion in 2015. He is a multi Rank 1 Warrior, Rank 1 Enhancement Shaman, and current AWC competitor. He is also the author of our
PvP guides. Find him here:
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