As a few of you have pointed out, there is a large group of highly notable Ferals on the boards speculating that the changes to Shred, Ravage, Mangle, etc. were all made to offset the effect of Cat's scaling from Strength being cut in half. I would like to take this opportunity to clear a few things up.

First, this blog is nigh-entirely about Feral PvP. I do not really care about the impact in PvE; I use it occasionally as a point of leverage for the claims I make about Feral's damage output (either lack or abundance of). That being said, the great maths guys who run these numbers have speculated that the loss of Strength in the PvE environment will be anywhere from 700 to ~1000 attack power lost for Ferals, and a 15% damage buff across the board will roughly cover that difference with a little to spare (one reader suggested as little as a 3% dps boost). However, looking at these changes from my point of view, I have 101 Strength, I do not roll with a DK, Warrior, or Hunter, so I will end up losing 101 attack power from the 4.2 patch and gain roughly 15% damage across all my specials - that is, quite unmistakeably, a buff and a large one to boot.

Second, while many are noticing that Ferocious Bite's damage is being increased 15% as well, many are simply ignoring (or not noticing; maybe I should give them the benefit of the doubt) the fact that Ferocious Bite was changed from 35-70 energy cost to 25-50 energy cost. This change alone makes Ferocious Bite better DPE and burst than Shred. The opportunity-cost of the ability goes down rather significantly by us not dumping a full bar of energy into the ability and it continues to do the same (read: 15% more) damage as before! Again, in PvE this will likely not matter all that much, but in PvP this is a huge burst boost. Essentially, FB was only for kill-shot-attempts in PvP before, and one would usually only use it against clothies as the damage is rather lackluster against high-armored targets; however, the damage is being increased (by more than 15% if you take Feral Aggression; think of it as a 16.5% damage buff instead of 15%), the cost is being lowered, and the burst is still useful.

From the PvP point of view, this patch is simply buffing Ferals (when they don't run with a DK/Hunter/Warrior for the Strength buff, and even then it's only a 500ap loss or so). From a PvE point of view, it will be a slight damage buff and it will hopefully push Ferocious Bite back into the rotation a bit more.