After several attempts to balance the Nitro Boots ability in the arena, we have decided that we currently do not have an acceptable solution. Until we are able to better balance this ability it has been shut down in the arenas. We fully plan to continue working on this item and we intend to adjust it in upcoming patches.

A few things to note about Nitro Boosts: 1) Yes, I have them on my boots, 2) I put them on my boots last week as simply "another" gap closer, 3) I mainly use them when my target uses them so we're two flaming people chasing each other, 4) they really DID need to be removed from the arena, and 5) I'm not going to miss them. Essentially, I'm still going to have Dash, Guntir's STILL not going to have any speed bonuses to evade enemies, but our enemies aren't going to have any speed bonuses of their own.

The main complaint that I'm seeing in the forums is the fact that most rogue+priest and double-dps teams rely on the nitro boosts. Essentially, they get into situations where they could not otherwise win without the nitro boosts to close gaps quickly and pop fears or land the killing blows they need. To this I say "Fantastic!" This means that otherwise poorly organized teams had a crutch which allowed them to make up for their lack of coordination by quickly closing gaps. Say this rogue+priest team couldn't stick on a druid healer because the druid was designed to be very mobile and he made enough ground to start casting Nourish on himself at 10% hp while the rogue's deadly throw and sprint was down. This rogue has been outplayed, but because he is an engineer, he has a friendly button to close that gap and kick/kidneyshot that cast and win the match. The druid did EVERYTHING in his power to survive and he got dicked out of a win because of his opponents' profession choice.

This is why the Nitro Boosts needed to be removed from the arenas. When your perfect play doesn't work because your opponents' choice of professions (especially when you COULD have gotten away if you hadn't spent all that time being a herbalist and alchemy master), the bonus in question is overpowered. I'm still going to use the Hand Mounted Pyro-Rocket because it does add some burst to my onslaught every 45 seconds (as would the Gnomish Lightning Generator if I didn't have the Death card instead... it's just better damage albeit random).

Then, of course, there are the PvP "pros" who only picked up Engineering for the Nitro Boost advantage and are complaining that they have wasted thousands of gold getting up a profession that they no longer want (though I still don't see many alternatives). I simply laugh at these players as my old signature in the forums seems to ring true:

"Min/Maxing in the arena is a good start at insanity and ulcers."

Essentially, if you NEEDED the Nitro Boosts to win matches, you didn't really have any skill to begin with. You were using a crutch to give you an unfair advantage over many of your opponents and even ground with the rest. After this change went live, everyone else lost their hyper-mobility that their specs should not have had by design (however, my class remains hyper-mobile by design, thankfully).

Oh well. We won't miss them... I can go back to putting agi on my boots (although, I think I'm going to wait and see what Blizzard decides to do about the Nitro Boosts... I'm not yet convinced that they will remain unusable in the arenas forever... they will probably get some sort of balancing aspects and then be turned back on. Though, I probably won't want them then... we'll see).

We hit 2100 on Monday (yeah, I haven't posted in a while... things have been hectic). We beat some pretty decent rogue+priest teams who can't grasp interrupting Tranquility, which I suppose begs the question of whether or not they were actually good at their 2200 MMR. We lost to a druid+warrior team with an MMR above 2400, though the match was a lot closer than the end-result would have you believe. Keep in mind that this match was before the warrior tweaks to Juggernaut and Glyph of Rapid Charge, so we MIGHT have won this match after Tuesday's patch. We also got a handful of DK+Pally teams which we facerolled over mainly because half of them were the prot-spec'd pallies who like to heal.

Let's talk about the Prot-spec'd pallies who like to heal for a second. If you are a full protection specialized paladin and you are wearing healing gear with the idea being that you will bring good utility and decent heals, you have to remember a few things: firstly, one must remember that while prot pallies can bring some utility, if you are spending all your time healing, you can't use it; secondly, if you are prot spec'd, you do not have Holy Shock, which is probably the best heal your class can get for the arenas; and thirdly, if you don't have Holy Shock, you can't abuse instant-cast flash of lights after the fact, which makes up a HUGE amount of burst healing.

Whenever we face a prot pally, we simply turtle through his utility (which is on short cooldowns, but you only need to outlast it once), then put pressure on his DPS partner and cyclone/fear him. Do you know what happens when a prot pally is cycloned and his DK/Warrior/whatever hits 20% hp? Usually, his partner dies because the prot pally has to spam Flash of Light, but he doesn't have half the talents that make it awesome, so he's fighting a VERY hard battle of Rip, Rake, and Mangles with Flash of Light while Guntir is spamming Mana Burn. These matches don't last very long against baddies, and against good players, we can time our burst around two abilities: cyclone+fear combos AND Divine Plea. Do you know what happens when a prot pally hits Divine Plea, is eating mana burns, spamming flash of light on his dps who is eating Rip, Rake, and Mangle-spam? Usually he either has to click Divine Plea off OR his target dies.

That being said, I have heard rumors that Protpally+Protwarrior is making its way up the ladders. When I see this, the only thing I can think is that disc+rogue is going to be a cakewalk for these guys, and dk+pally would be a bit tricky, but probably an auto-win like it is for us. However, when prot+prot walks up against feral+disc, they will lose... every single time. This is because there is no mortal strike effect, and no matter how mobile either class is, neither of them puts out as much damage as I do, and neither of them can kill over the duration of HoJ.

Anywace, we're probably going to try and get some games in today and test out the new Innervate. I hear it's overpowered as all hell for resto druids, but people probably don't know that it's overpowered as all hell for Disc priests even more-so, since they ALSO have Shadowfriend to aid in the mana returned. Against teams who do not have a dispeller, mana is no longer an issue, I'm imagining, and against teams who do have dispels, we will simply need to play our kite-n-hide tactic that we've been playing up till now...

...and it'll be much easier given that their dispeller will not have Nitro Boosts...