Sunday, June 04, 2006

Interactivity

To me it seems like paladins don't have as wide a range of abilities as other classes. Every other non-dps class has a different set of abilities that it uses while soloing. This makes soloing as interactive as grouping. As well, the game enforces this difference through different means.

Paladins, on the other hand, only use a subset of their abilities while soloing. So soloing is far less interactive than grouping.

Look at warriors. For soloing, they have Battle and Berserker Stances, along with all the associated abilities only used in those stances. Then in group play, they have Defensive Stance and the high threat moves. The different forms enforce the different ability sets.

Druids have different forms (cat, bear, moonkin!) and abilities that they use while soloing. Then in groups, they use a different set of abilities to heal. Like the warrior, the different forms enforce the different ability sets.

Same with Priests. Soloing with a priest is interactive because of abilities like Smite, and various damage spells. Being a priest in a group uses a completely different set of spells. In the priest's case, the different ability sets is more enforced by threat. Mindblast is the perfect example. You don't cast Mindblast in group play because it's high threat. You cast it all the time in solo play.

Shamans have possibly the opposite problem from paladins. In solo play, they can use all their abilities, while in group play they generally use a smaller portion. I believe the game enforces the different ability sets by limiting their mana. A lot of their moves have a high mana cost, making those moves sub-optimal for group play, but perfectly fine while soloing.

A paladin, meanwhile, is pretty interactive in group play. Run in, judge, seal, auto-attack, and then start healing, cleansing, tactical buffing as needed. However, in solo play, it's: run in, judge, seal, auto-attack ... and that's it. The healing, cleansing, tactical buffing that makes paladins somewhat interactive in group play simply doesn't exist in solo play.

The paladin needs a set of moves that it can use in solo play, but CANNOT use in group play.

Unfortunately there doesn't seem to be that much hope for us. We have no forms, unlike the warrior and druid. We can't be limited by threat, unlike priests, because that would make us godlike tanks. And being limited by mana is at cross-purposes with our highly efficient heals.

8 comments:

Devotion said...

Paladins need 3 abilities to get to 60 quickly. Seal of Command, Holy Light, Auto-attack.

Shamans arent that much better. They have more options, but those options are so mana inneficient that you have to choose between an expensive route where you buy a lot of water, or you just autoattack like a Paladin and mana conserve.

Anonymous said...

Well, Shamans at least have choice.

Kinless said...

Out soloing, as a Shaman, I'd use a Lightning Bolt to pull my target, a Fire Shock to place a DoT on my target, melee with Windfury, Frost Shock to finish it off or keep it from running.

Variations: Rockbiter instead of Frostshock if I want to get more aggro out of the attack.

If I'm in a small group, I can range DPS with lightning bolts, then move to melee, but that's stupid. I could move to melee, drop totems, melee and frostshock runners and do spot heals. Or just hang back and heal and cleanse.

In raids I'm definitely in back healing and cleansing. (The higher the level the PvE Shaman gear is the more obvious it is that we're healers 1st. And 2nd. And 3rd.)

So, if I'm out soloing it's either steady DPS with Rockbiter or burst DPS with Windfury, i.e. auto-attack. And a bolt and shock or two to keep it interesting. (Heh.)

But, like Devotion says, casting is just too mana intensive. And on a PvP server mana conservation is king. Auto-attack ftw.

Yashima said...

First off, I have never played a paladin beyond level 12. I've never been in a group playing a paladin and maybe that was because I never got beyond the boring part of soloplay. I do like to group with paladins however, as they have proven to be - well - just a class I like to have with.

Well I am probably a bit off-topic with the following .... to have different skill subsets for solo and group play is hard to accept for those classes that have them especially upon reaching lvl 60 and therefore starting the "endgame"

Think of priests wanting to do damage and all those off-warriors who do not like to tank and last but not least the druids who can do everything pretty well even in a group and are most often told to "just heal". I am a lucky druid my groups usually let me use a wide range of my abilities in group play but many many people are used to use more of their skills in their early levels and are later disappointed to become healbots or def-tanks who can do nothing but tank and do no damage at all.

Just my 2c

Yashima

GSH said...

Well, I'm not saying that the other skills are not used in raids. My guild has shadow priests, feral druids, and dps warriors. I was just using the default role as an example.

I'm saying the situation with paladins would be akin to a tanking warrior being forced to solo in Defensive Stance. Even if a warrior tanks all the time in raids, they can still switch to Battle Stance and pull out a 2H when not in a group.

This is an option a paladin simply does not have. We use *all* of our abilities when in a group. But we can only use a portion of our abilities when soloing, making soloing less interactive than grouping.

Devotion said...

agreed, paladins are by far the least interactive class in WoW. I actually had some fun because of the command proc, vengeance, vindication animations...but those got boring after a while :(

Hexapuma said...

Interesting post.. I do play a rogue and I have the opposite problem. I have tons of fun and variety when solo (or pvp) but feel very limited when it comes to raids..

Get in and turn the DPS throttle to full. Mostly never stun/gogue or other interesting moves.

I did start a paladin alt recently.. partly because of paladins seem to have so much to do during raids. Hey.. I am a supporter at heart =) Still at lvl 20 so auto-attack with mixed judgements (SoC / SoCom) are the bread and butter of most fights.

Thoma said...

Yep, we do so much. I mean we can decurse (press the number 2 key 800 times), we can use the same heal over and over ( FOL spam for the win, it's button number 3), every two mins I get to use Divine favor (number 1 key). I might on an exciting fight get to press number 5 to do a holy shock heal. Yep, the life of a raiding paladin is so interactive.

Rogues have plenty of other things to do. They can whine about buffs. They can complain that it's not fair MTs get first priority for healing.