You know, Flanking had a quite impressive radius of effect. 270 degree since it works all the time except when in front. When you play a character with Flanking as well, you could do some circle straffing, as both of you tend to be with Flanking effective. But when you don't have it, and you don't have a way to avoid melee, it shows to be an hindrance.
And when I played with my Witch Elf (why did they never fix suffering), if both me and my opponent were straffing, i was the one who started straffing, most of the times I was able to hit with my positional stun and if I wasn't I couldn't. It meant that when you've been attacked by a Choppa, Slayer, Witch Elf or Witch Hunter, which have attacks to use from the back, there were high chances that they still had the upper hand on you. It was especially risky if you also depend on avoidance.
It was safe to sometimes break the straffing with a little back ped making the opponent in front, and letting you choose when to straf again (and giving you the upper hand).
There are also situations where circle straffing was a plain bad idea : what will happen if as a tank I circle straf around a WH in a group fight ? When I'll be half round, I'll just show my back to all the Bright Wizards and others in the backline and at this point, I could as well dump my shield. I followed the same reasoning if I had to use some 100% avoidance type abilities (except for disruption which works at 360 degree), it is much more effective if nobody's behind me.
And concerning the fact that back ped works only if the opponent let go with it, it's wrong. It's just that you didn't face someone good at it. In a game with collision management, you will never find the back of a peddler who knows what he's doing.
But I think we go a bit too much off-topic.
Eh, I can see this turning into a never ending opinion vs opinion rant. If you're happy using back peddling by all means stick with it, it'll be a cold day in hell before I do.