Are classes going to be balanced in WOTLK?

Probably not.  At least not right away.

This response from Ghostcrawler about mages (I saw it on Spicytuna) seems to confirm what I pretty much expected:

– Is the numbers pass starting soon? We’re worried that you may be running short (5 weeks) on time to properly see data regarding the dps passes.

We’ve been in the middle of it for weeks. Don’t worry about the time. We don’t. If we looked at the ship date as a deadline, then we’d get sloppy and do dumb things. The truth is that in an MMO, game balance is a process not a destination. Even after the patch goes live, we’ll have opporunities to make changes before you can head to Northrend. With all the changes we’ve made, there are going to have to be some quick patches to fix things we missed. And overall we’d like to address balance problems that do erupt in a more timely fashion – consider, before we could always say “Eh, they’ll still take the X for his Y buff even if his dps is low.” We can’t say that anymore. Now we just have to get stuff fixed.

Hmm, interesting philosophy about ship dates and deadlines.

But this is pretty much par for the course.  I expect classes to more or less work when WOTLK hits and then a bunch of wailing and moaning from players and minor tweaks from developers as they do their balancing based on data from the live game. 

Players that think the game will be perfect on Day 1 and players that think the game will be irretrievably borked will both be proved wrong – eventually.

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