Tl;DR: Lust/BR are too strong and boot 1/2 of the DPS from 2/3 of the spots in dungeons. Drums back to 25%, upgraded engineering BR to make it ranged.
What's the group setup for M+ at 15 and above keys? If you said Tank/Heal/DPS/DPS/DPS then you'd be wrong, it's tank/heal/BR/BL/DPS. Can you complete it without? Sure. Should you? Hell no, it's a significant decrease in the success chance of the key. Drums are weak and the range limitation/cast time on the engineering item makes it non-viable for recovering from tank/healer deaths in many situations. These aren't cool utility tools anymore, they're actual roles in the group. This means that 1/2 the DPS classes have one spot in most groups, zero if the leader is one of these. Hosting generally sucks, you can't target farm and you're forced to repeat if your group sucks. This leaves us in a situation where the host is usually one of the less desired members, AKA the 6 DPS classes that don't fit.
Now yes two tanks and one healer have BR, but you probably don't want your healer or tank having the only BR because they're the highest priority to get one. Not to mention that due to population differences it's much easier to fill the BR/BL spots as DPS than as tank/heal. Also, BDK basically might as well not exist in high keys, so it's more-so one tank.
Right now, it feels very forced to have a team of:
- Tank (DH, Pally, Druid, Monk)
- Healer (Shaman, disc, paladin. Druid/h priest are perfectly playable as well, just not seen as much.)
- Mage/Hunter/Shaman (BL)
- Druid/DK/Lock (BR)
- Covenant, FOTM, affix based, ringer. (The only "free" space, don't worry if you're doing progression then you're not getting this space anyway.)
There's no room to choose three "off meta" DPS because you're giving up major utility and no amount of 5% damage buffs can change that. It's not as though these classes are given less utility because they have these role defining abilities either. Balance has force of nature, roots, AoE silence, knockback, vortex, soothe, stealth and decent off healing for disasters. Hunter has binding shot, soothe/dispel, AoE slow, turtle, FD, knockback,MD, freezing trap and probably stuff I've missed. Even DK and mage bring quite a bunch with AMZ/grip/sheep/ice block/dispel etc. Lock and Shaman do suffer a bit in the utility department as DPS outside of BR/BL (lock mostly just brings cookies) but the other four are fine.
I think drums need to go back to being slightly worse than BL. The engineering BR could have an upgraded version that grants 30-40yd range. The classes that have these abilities do not rely on them to be useful and they do not need to be so run defining that it forces them into your group. Given these changes they'd still be nice to have but would no longer be mandatory. You cannot balance around these abilities by making the classes deal less damage without effecting raids, PvP and generally just making them less enjoyable to play. Removing their other utility isn't a fun solution either, utility brings depth and is enjoyable to use.
Also since I know people will assume I play one of these six DPS, I actually main VDH with KSM. My main alt is a resto druid. I also have a resto shaman that I abandoned and a SP that isn't even 170 after hitting 60. I'm just sick of every group being the exact same thing with no real option to mix it up. Damage output may not be balanced but addressing BR/BL would at least make full non meta teams less punishing.
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