Ghostcrawler recently had a very big update on PvE and PvP balance, and actually mentioned ferals a couple times! I know, I was as shocked as you were. The whole thing is over at MMO-Champ, but the important relevant bits of ferals I've copied.
Okay, that doesn't sound THAT bad. Ferals shouldn't dismiss haste like they do now for the junk stat that it is, and improving lacerate and making it scale with haste sounds good, right?
We’ll make a pass to make stats that aren’t attractive (but are supposed to be) more attractive. For example, we don’t want Assassination rogues to dismiss crit or Feral tanks to dismiss haste. We are considering making some physical attacks such as Lacerate, Steady Shot, and Slam scale with haste.
Kinda. See, right now lacerate is the filler attack for bears. It's what bears do when Mangle's on CD and they have rage, or it's what they do to get Pulverize back up while waiting for berserk procs. This works not because lacerate has an awesome bleed, but because lacerate's threat and damage got boosted on the front. It used to be that the actual lacerate attack was pretty insignificant but the lacerate bleed was awesome; they changed that.
Why did they change that? Well, mostly because (I think) they didn't want bears to be doing thrash and swipe as their 'filler' attacks and only use lacerate for the bleed. They also wanted Pulverize to be less of a threat-negative situation.
Right now, haste could make lacerate dots tick twice as often per % and it still wouldn't be worth it. The bleeds just don't do enough damage or threat and the uptime of lacerate is low enough that it's not worth it anyway. Haste could only really improve how often the lacerate dot ticks; it's not like haste can make us gain more lacerate attacks. Thus, the only real way to make haste work better for ferals is to make the actual dot do more damage.
Which would put bears back in the 'backloaded, slow threat' mode that they were. Except...well, bear threat is almost entirely defined by maul and mangle. Pulverize is done almost entirely to make maul and mangle hit harder. Lacerate should be up on the target to make mauls hit harder. So even if lacerate is boosted, it's still a very small portion of overall threat.
As an example of this, let's say for argument's sake that the lacerate bleed component was a whopping 20% of overall threat for a bear. It isn't that - not even close. And it's not been that, either. 1% haste - 128 haste rating - would improve that bear's threat by .2%. If melee attacks are another 20% of overall damage that makes haste give a whopping .4% threat per 1% haste.
Not that thrilling, I know. And because lacerate bleed crits don't proc savage defense any more, you have the fun times of only improving your savage defense via the white attacks.
So...how do you make haste more attractive to bears? Here's a few ideas I had.
1. Make haste also improve avoidance directly. Have a deep feral talent that allows haste to give avoidance at 50% of dodge rating. Intuitive, easy, no real math. If that's too much, make it at 25% or something.
2. Make lacerate ticks crit at an absurd rate and be able to proc Savage Defense. Then improve them via haste. You'd need to get like an 80% crit rate on lacerate dots to make this matter, but it could really help.
3. Make white attacks have a chance to proc savage defense or some other defensive ability.
4. Nerf maul and mangle and make lacerate better.
5. Make pulverize not consume the lacerate stack. This alone would improve the threat of the bleed greatly.
6. Revamp bears to make rage matter for for survival and less for threat.
Of these, I really want 6 to be the case but it won't happen. The main reason that bears don't care about haste is that they don't care about rage, and they don't care about rage because threat isn't ever as important as survival. I don't think that threat is going to be nerfed hugely (though it might be), so it really comes down to making rage actually matter for a bear. What if a bear had to keep x amount of rage to keep their mitigation higher, by improving their armor? Or a bear took 1% less damage for every 10 rage they had stored? Or if barkskin, survival instincts and even savage defense required rage to use? Then we'd care about haste quite a bit.
But bears aren't rage capped. They're GCD capped. And rage only helps with threat. So...we just don't care.
Onto cats: the other statement in the big post was about druids in general (especially for pvp):
So the fear immunity from berserk is gone. Oh well. Not hugely missed but it was very nice on a few boss fights, especially as a cat. As to shifting some of the damage from bleeds to main attacks - GOOD. 50-60% of damage coming from bleeds meant ferals were really funky on some fights. When they could establish a bleed rotation or at least establish rake and rip and they could tick for a good long time, ferals could rule. If a feral could get bleeds going on multiple targets at once, they could be good. But on fights where there was a lot of down time or rampup time, ferals kinda sucked. They took a while to get rip up, and often rip wouldn't tick for the duration anyway or couldn't be refreshed properly. Target switching was really lame. Haste, hit, and expertise all were ignored for bleeds since none helped bleeds do more damage once they were applied. It was just a bad move.
Even after we fixed their mastery, Feral druid bleeds still do a lot of damage and are undispellable. We plan to shift some of that damage back to main attacks. They are also a little too hard to control. Given that they are already hard to root, snare, or polymorph, we think the fear immunity from Berserk is too much.
Really, I want haste to be better for cats. There are two ways to make that happen - either make bleeds scale with haste like they were going to originally or make bleeds do less overall damage and make white and yellow attacks do more. Note that ferals don't have a lot of yellow attacks to do; shred and mangle are basically it, and you don't want to mangle more than every 30 seconds (if you have t11) anyway. Still, haste making things faster and making more OoC procs, more white damage and more shred damage would be a good thing. It really doesn't have to be much to swing it that way either; simply make bleeds do about 10% less damage and make shreds and white attacks do about 10% more.