Tuesday, October 07, 2008

WotLK Beta - New Updates

Ghostcrawler posted some upcoming changes for paladins:
Righteous Defense -- cooldown lowered to 8 sec. It had been 10 sec recently and is 15 sec on live.

Infusion of Light -- now affects Flash of Light or Holy Light. Flash of Light is reduced to 0 cast time with 2 ranks, meaning that if you're running around and get a Holy Shock crit, you can also Flash without stopping.

Judgements of the Pure -- haste benefit now up to 15% with 5 ranks (was 10%).

Enlightened Judgements -- range benefit is now 30 yards with 2 ranks (was 20). This means you can judge or heal from the same range without having to run around so much.

They're all minor buffs, except for Infusion of Light.

The new IoL fundamentally changes the nature of the talent. The previous versions only applied to Holy Light, allowing a paladin to "sit" on the buff and drop a really fast big heal when necessary, while still doing maintenance healing with Flash of Light and Holy Shock. This granted more control over healing to the paladin.

The new IoL will apply to the very next heal cast after the Holy Shock. It will be used if the buff is needed, or if the buff is not needed. There is no added control over healing. The only thing the buff does is change the time a heal lands in the rotation. Instead of going:

0s - Shock (instant)
3s - FoL
4.5s - FoL

The paladin now goes:

0s - Shock (instant)
1.5s - FoL (instant)
4.5s - FoL

Wow, the gap got shifted one spell over, assuming you got lucky and your HS crit. That's so worth 2 talent points!

(The new IoL might be more useful in PvP, as double instant heals are probably pretty useful, even if the heals are smaller. )

But kind of honestly, Infusion of Light is now looking like a waste of talent points for a PvE build. Looks like Blizzard's crack Holy paladin dev team managed to make IoL even more pointless, and reduce the value of Holy Shock even further. I don't think there's any point to weaving Holy Shock into a regular healing rotation anymore. It's still okay for an emergency cast on the run, but not for casting regularly.


  1. The fact that we do circles around a couple of talents shows that we should not expect too many changes, at least untill the patch goes live and Blizzard gets some proper feedback/logging/qqing and all that.

    The extra range in judgements is nice. If only they did some damage, it would make things more fun. (Still, judging justice on that running cat-shaped druid ought to be fun :p)

    IoL is..meh, I agree, probably not worth the extra two points. In most PTR builds I made I went around it. Its not that its total crap but the oportunity cost is high, bearing in mind its so high on the tree (or down... :-p)

    `Pure' is a welcomed changes which I get the feeling will have an effect in the long run. I currently often use judgements for the debuffs, so having that 15% extra as a side-effect seems tasty.

    Also, - and I have not tried it sufficently... - its might be usefull when farming. Particularly if u try with a 2H, some ap (there might be a sweet-spot there).

    Still, the tree has no `celebrity' apart from BoL which is kinda tricky. All I see in Bol is something that can make the odd off-heal less dangerous and not a panacea of indirect healing. At 51-points? We got about a month in tbc content to test if its truly worth it :p

    In all accounts Holy is not as well thought as the other two trees. Where is the world going to...

  2. You obviously play a different game then I do. I always wonder if the people who post xx talent / ability is terrible! actually play the game at all or simply read the description and say it is terrible. Reading Ej and WoW forums about Holy has made me laugh. Holy is borderline overpowered in Naxx WotLK.

    Currently, in WotLK raids, you really don't use Holy Shock as part of a "normal" rotation. The situations it sees use are mainly those in which you are required to move. In those cases, the "extra" flash is welcome. In every other situation, you would simply cast 2 Flash of Lights instead of one and a Holy Shock.

    If you really want to use it in the way you advertised (sitting on a proc) you can simply cast Sacred Shield, refresh Judgements of the Pure, refresh Beacon of Light, etc.

    To be honest, in Naxx, my spell break down has <5% Holy Shock for most fights. I am also well above (most) other healers in both throughput and longevity. Obviously this was the case in early TBC, and post AQ40 in Vanilla, and it remains to be seen how well we will scale. However, currently, Paladins are very strong healers, almost to the levels of pre SWP. Since Blizzard is aware, this time, of the limitations of the class, it shouldn't return to the current situation.

    Beacon of Light is simply overpowered in situations that occur in 80% of all fights. With Glyph of Holy Light, it becomes obscene.


    As for PvP, Holy looks to be as strong as it was in the beginning of S2. That is to say, while it isn't straight up the best choice for every bracket like it was all of Season 1, it remains one of the better choices.

    A 40 yard judge absolutely destroys any Druid. They simply can not shift, and without feral charge, they can not kite a melee class being cleansed with Hand of Freedom.

    If things go unchanged, War/DK/hPal will dominate any team with a Druid.

    PS Ret is amazing.

  3. Regarding 'sitting' on an instant Holy Light: I've seen this tossed around the forums a lot, but the fact is there was a 15 second timer built in to use your Instant cast, after which it would run out.

    Still, I liked the original better. This seemed like a good compromise, but looks less thrilling on further scrutiny. I don't think we'll see it back to its original form, sadly.

  4. You're correct that the 15 second timer would allow for the IoL buff to run out however, in the original build, Holy Shock would have been weaved into the healing rotation thus providing the instant heal pretty much all the time.

    If you only HS once in a while of course the buff would fall off but if it's used regularly and you have a semi decent crit rate you should have that buff all the time.

    This is what they're talking about when they say they were going to 'sit on' the buff. The buff was more of an 'O-sh!t' security blanket before whereas now there's less of an incentive to weave the HS into the rotation since you'll burn the buff your very next heal.

  5. No one has said holy doesn't work as a spec just that it's not fun to play. Most specs have changes between org, bc, Wotlk, but holy is the same. You find the spot you are supposed to stand and hit this heal button. The heal button once you have gear is HL. That's all you do. It's kinda boring. That is the point.

    Paladin healing does suck in sunwell -> shaman's for the win!

  6. Switch a few talent names, and this is how I feel about the priest Holy tree.

  7. Beacon of Light is pretty cool. The only concern I have about Beacon is getting sniped in a 25-man. And that may be a minor concern.

    I'm not saying Holy isn't powerful. Just that it is the same FoL/HL spam playstyle. I thought that Blizzard was aggressively pushing Holy Shock as a new heal for us. Shorter cooldown, more powerful, and the old Infusion of Light. But now, they're devaluing HS, to the point where people are not using it. ("<5% for most fights" as pointed out above.)

  8. "To be honest, in Naxx, my spell break down has <5% Holy Shock for most fights. I am also well above (most) other healers in both throughput and longevity."

    You know that this is bad right? For most people, this is called "boring". Holy Shock+Infusion synergy made the tree more fun. Bringing it back to where HS and IoL are more or less useless makes it as boring as it was in vanilla and in bc.

  9. Holy pallys are essentially the mage version of healers, i.e. (pretty much)all direct spells. I don't understand why we can't be given a POM talent. The old IoL was perfect, not quite a POM, but it gave us the CHANCE to have something like it. I mean if Blizz isn't going to give us a decent HoT, then we should be the masters at direct healing, and imo that should include an insta cast talent that applies to all our spells. Stupid freaking arenas had to go and screw up a perfectly good talent once again.

  10. I really wont mind if it is boring as long as it isnt underpowered. I am currently powerleveling a Resto Druid as well, so when the expansion comes out, I can make a choice on what specs I want them to be.

  11. From what I can tell, the only complaint about Holy is that it's boring. The talents and spells are all there to make paladins awesome healers, just like they were in BC.

    However, I don't think that this is enough. Boring is bad. I am way in favor of a talent/spell (or more) to spice up paladin healing. But to do that, something would be nerfed.

    So I guess the tradeoff that I'm seeing is being highly efficient and highly effective vs. being interesting and challenging to play. I sincerely hope that a balance can be achieved that allows for the big, efficient heals when you need them, but unique, interesting heals otherwise.

  12. I don't think there's any point to weaving Holy Shock into a regular healing rotation anymore. It's still okay for an emergency cast on the run, but not for casting regularly.

    Me too. I wasn't looking forward to HS as part of the rotation as in having another toy but simply relief from the one-trick-pony FoL spamming gameplay we had in BC.

    Until further notice, my assessment in terms of fun gameplay is now either tankadin or the new Ret, who currently (after almost 5 years) finally has all we ever asked from the holy warrior we had been reading about so long ago. It's not whether Holy has or doesn't have the tools to do the job, but it still looks like the exact same unchanged monotonous gameplay than ever.

  13. Thanks, Irishman -- I hadn't played around with it enough to realize the buff would be refreshed with each Holy Shock crit.

    (anonymous #2)

  14. Thank you for posting this. I saw the blue thread, and all the happy responses, and thought "how can everyone be happy about such a lame change?" Recently on the PTR I tested a healing build that was 41 points into ret and doing about the same as pure holy - I can't understand how Blizz doesn't think that's a problem.

  15. " Beacon of Light is simply overpowered in situations that occur in 80% of all fights. With Glyph of Holy Light, it becomes obscene. "

    Is AoE-heal from Glyph of Holy Light reflected on the Beacon?

  16. Yeah, all 5, and they can crit.

    As for the fun topic, PvE is rarely "fun"* for any class. Both DPS and Healers hit the same sequence of keys in succession again and again. Only "raid healers" really do any more, as they have to actively target players with less health.

    *if fun implies hitting more than two or three abilities.