Blizzard raises Minimum Global Cooldown to 1 Second Featured Image
  • Author: Pride
  • Date: September 28, 2021
  • Expansion: TBC Classic

Back in 2008, Blizzard released Patch 2.4 – Fury of the Sunwell which made one very significant change to the game – the spell haste stat will now reduce the global cooldown of spells from its default value of 1.5 second, down to a minimum of 1 second at 50% spell haste.

This had dramatic effects for many classes / specs, which previously got little to no benefit from the stat:

  • Specs that use a lot of instant casts, such as warlocks and shadow priests with their many DoTs
  • Classes with 1.5 second cast time spells, like holy paladins (Flash of Light) or warlocks (Immolate)
  • DPS classes that stack spell haste, pushing their cast time to below 1.5 second, such as elemental shamans (Lightning Bolt), arcane mages (Arcane Blast), etc, particularly during the effects of Heroism / Bloodlust, Power Infusion, etc.

This change was most impactful in PvP, where for many expansions to come, casters stacked spell haste so as to reduce their cast times and global cooldown.

But the implementation of this effect of spell haste has had a peculiar bug: it is possible for spell haste to push the global cooldown down to 0.75 seconds according to Blizzard, though players have reported numbers as low as 0.66 seconds – resulting in 50% more spell casts than intended.

If you have noticed being hit by up to 2 Ice Lances by an enemy mage during just 1 of your global cooldowns, this bug would be the reason why.

Blizzard raises Minimum Global Cooldown to 1 Second Body Image
Mages with their instant cast Ice Lance were one of the biggest beneficiaries of this bug

Thankfully, Blizzard is finally fixing this bug, with a hotfix coming with the scheduled weekly maintenance at 7:00 am PDT, on Tuesday, September 28 in the US.

This will result in a minor nerf for classes that heavily focused on spell haste, particularly in PvP, where stacking Heroism / Bloodlust with other class-based spell haste effects such as Icy Veins, Mind Quickening Gem, Power Infusion, etc was a popular strategy.

Spell haste gear is currently fairly scarce and becomes more abundant in later phases, so this change will have a limited effect for now and become bigger over time.

The change will be harsher for classes that had fairly low base cast time on their spells, such as elemental shamans and arcane mages, while warlocks with their 2.5 second cast Shadow Bolt will not be impacted significantly in raids.

Spell haste will likely still remain the best stat for most casters, but it might be wise to reconsider stacking multiple spell haste effects now that you cannot cast faster than once every second.

Kaivax – (Source)

With scheduled weekly maintenance (7:00 a.m. PDT, Tuesday, September 28 in this region), Spell Haste will now lower the global cooldown (GCD) to a minimum of 1.0 second. It has been possible for players to approach a minimum of 0.75 seconds since Burning Crusade Classic launched.

This hotfix is intended to bring the behavior of the GCD in line with version 2.4.0 of Burning Crusade, which the gameplay conditions of Burning Crusade Classic 2.5.2 are based on. Due to a bug in the original 2.4.0 code, players with high Spell Haste in original Burning Crusade were sometimes able to cast certain spells less than second apart, and they would also sometimes be delayed to over a second, based on how their actions were lining up with the server’s tick rate.

With this hotfix, we’ve decided that the fairest and most accurate thing we could do is to replicate the intent of the original game and enforce that Spell Haste cannot reduce the GCD below 1.0 second.

Thank you for all of your feedback on this issue.

About the Author

Pride

Classic WoW is my jam, with a passion for PvP. Most know me as Baranor, the ret paladin guy, but I'm secretly a druid main, don't tell anyone. In my free time I play Switch games, particularly JRPGs. Some day I'll be making my own games and I humbly hope you play those too!

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