It's been exactly two years since I started writing this blog.
I've been looking back at the posts from a year ago, and I find that I am much less happy than I was back then. Specialization came and, rather than freeing other paladins to join me on the front lines, it chained me, and bound me to join the vast majority of my brethren (90%!) spamming heals from the back.
Do I really like playing my paladin, or do I just love the paladin archetype?
The paladin archetype, that of a holy warrior, is really, really strong. Even a movie like Tales of the Past--a WoW movie steeped in over three years of WoW lore--depicts a paladin as a divine fighter.
One of my very first posts was about how important the mental image of your character is. Watching that movie just hit home how much I want my paladin to be that style of paladin. For a brief moment in Blackwing Lair, that paladin was my paladin. And it also hit home that being a hybrid will never happen again.
WoW Paladins are healbots. The design of Flash of Light, coupled with the extreme specialization now in the game, ensures that, now and forever. A low power, high efficiency heal that resets the swing timer has doomed us to a life of spamming heals from the back.
I could pretend to be a tank, or DPS, but that puts stress on the already thin healing corps, and that just feels selfish to me. We're already struggling to field a full set of healers. Our Shadow priest had to respec back to Holy, and I think we're down to one Resto druid. And quite frankly, I don't want to be a tank, or to be DPS. I want to be a paladin once again.
Do I like my paladin? Or do I just like the idea of a paladin, a hybrid melee character who healed and blessed her group while dealing retribution with a two-handed hammer? Coriel was that paladin once, will she ever be again?