Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Streamlining Blessings, Take 2

I hate having to use PallyPower. But handing out Blessings manually is very annoying, especially if you have two or fewer paladins in the raid.

Here is an idea to make casting Blessings easier. I hesitate to propose this, because it is a nerf to paladins, and everyone is going to complain about that. (Yes, I know my audience.) However, I would rather have a reduction in power--which can be made up somewhere else--in exchange for the smoothing out of gameplay annoyances.

Suppose all normal Blessings--not Greater Blessings--hit the entire party or raid instead of individuals. There would be no more individual blessings, just one button and you Bless the entire raid, starting from the very first rank of Blessing of Might that you get at level four.

This immediately simplifies Blessings, because you can't make complicated assignments. You hand out Might or Wisdom to the raid, not Might to some people and Wisdom to others. However, multiple paladins still hand out different blessings, just like now. You could even have the regular Blessings cost a reagent and last for 30 minutes, though you might have to do some fiddling with the lowest ranks.

This would probably make Kings the first choice of Blessing, followed by Might and then Wisdom. I'm not sure where Sanctuary would fit in.

The biggest problem with this scheme (other than the fact that Blessings become less powerful) is that Blessings become more similar to Auras. A paladin gives 1 Blessing and 1 Aura to the raid, and all raid members get the same Blessing and Aura. However, Auras are still centered on the paladin and are lost when the paladin dies, while Blessings belong to the character, and have a limited duration. Perhaps that is enough differentiation. Another minor issue is that you can no longer do drive-by buffing of random people, which is always fun.

Edit: Heh, I just remembered that I already wrote a Streamlining Blessings post a year ago, which proposed combining Blessings of Might and Wisdom in a single Blessing. Guess this is another solution.


  1. about moving the responsibility of picking the blessing to the receiver?

    Pally hands out a blessing, and it is kings/might/wisdom/sanc, whatever the receiver doesn't already have. Clicking off a pally blessing that has time left on causes it to switch to the next available blessing (skipping wisdom for non-mana classes...and skipping sanc if no prot pally did a cast). New blessing has the same time left on the clock that the old one did.

    You can only have one blessing on you per pally (still).

    So if one pally buffs you, if you want kings you are done. If you want something else click it until it shows up.

    In fact it is the same if two pallys buff you -- click pally bufs you don't want until you get the ones you do want. Done.

    The only loose end is "Improved blessing of X". There you can give pallys a bit of a nerf and just remove them, or you can give them a bit of a buff and just make them all "Improved blessing" which improves any of the blessings.

    Oh, or just replace "your blessing of X is improved" with "while your blessing is on a target all blessings of X on that target are improved".

    Now you replace "a pally has to more work as you add more people to the raid" with "each person that gets a pally buf needs to do a small constant amount of work"

  2. Perhaps have a blessing order set up in the user interface options where every individual player selects the order he wants blessings in. Pallies press their "bless raid" ability just like priests and mages only have to cast it once for the whole raid, and each player gets the blessing he selected first. 2nd pally hits his Bless Raid button and everyone gets their 2nd choice buff. Have Kings>Might/Wisdom>Sanctuary set as standard unless players change their own settings. That would make it your own responsibility to assign buffs and alleviate a lot of headache when you group with pallies that won't use pallypower

  3. Why not just combine Wisdom and Might into 1 blessing and allow it to work as Might when your attack power is higher than your spellpower and wisdom if the reverse is true?

    I honestly doubt combining them would be a big deal if healers get wisdom and melee dps might.

  4. I'd like it if they made made Greater Blessings last 1hour and normal Blessings last 30mins to bring them in line with the duration of other buffs.

    Add in combing Wisdom and Might into one super-Blessing and I'd be a happy Paladin.

  5. Obvious answer to the Wisdom / Might issue (everyone wants Kings) to make this idea is to roll the buffs together. First paladin in the raid puts up kings, second one puts up Might&Wisdom.

    Sanctuary would need to become a non-blessing self-buff though. It's only beneficial to tanking Paladins and if you're the only paladin in a group then having to choose between giving yourself sanc or giving your group kings would be fairly terrible.

    I think in the end though that the current blessing system is fine. What it needs is some kind of UI enhancements to make it less annoying to apply buffs to a raid group, and also I think the reagent cost for the greater blessings has outlived its time as well.

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  7. These are all great ideas, but they're trying to solve a problem that won't exist for much longer.

    Remember that Attack Power and MP5 as stats will no longer exist in Cataclysm, so any in depth changes we make now would therefore need to be reworked.

    So, if we look at what we could expect with Cataclysm, we can infer what might happen or what should happen that'll benefit not only the class but the player's raid as well.

    Here are some thoughts...I definitely expect Blessings to stop being class based...they've also mentioned that there will no longer be talents increasing the effects of buffs. So, any Paladin has the strongest Wisdom and Might...but

    * MP5 is gone, and all healers will be using Spirit for regen (yes even us). Blessing of Wisdom may then become a Divine Spirit clone.

    * With AP, it looks slightly different. The stat may no longer exist on gear, but it still works behind the scenes. So, its POSSIBLE that we won't see Might change...but would it need to?

    With these expectations, there truly doesn't need to be very drastic changes EXCEPT the removal of the class based requirements. With that single change, no further issue exists.

  8. I've always thought some kind of Ritual of Blessings and have them persist through death would solve this problem. The fact that blessings are rather cumbersome as a whole should set off red flags for someone.

  9. Ditching the reagent for greaters would do it for me. I carry stacks and stacks of the things.

  10. The use of PP isnt the problem, the lack of use by others is the problem with streamlining the blessins. but that also isnt a problem anymore if youre familiar with your raidgroup.

  11. Actually Sanctuary is very nice for hard modes with a lot of raid damage. We're lucky enough to run our 10man HM's with three pallies - holy prot ret. Combine Sanc with Imp RF and you have a 9% damage reduction.

    I'm an advocate of combining might and wisdom together, take out the separate improvement talents and combine them into a T1 "Blessing of Battle". That way either you have the improved versions, or you don't.

  12. Honestly, I think on Cataclysm they should remove all blessings but Kings. As Kris said, the underlaying mechanics of Might and Wisdom will become suspect anyway (albeit no one said you cannot get them anymore, becuase AP will still exist in your sheet and Wis can be worded as 'you gain X mana every second' or something and not provide a stat).

    Thing is, other casters have non-scalable buffs. Priest do Fortitude, Druids do GotW etc. I think it will 'fit' the game to have us give Kings and that's it.

    It will heavily rain on my parade while pugging as ret, but such is life. As of now, being the only scalable buffer is unfair to everybody else, and we will still have seals, auras or whatever.

  13. "I'm not sure where Sanctuary would fit in."

    Sanctuary needs to go away entirely. Roll the mana-regen-by-avoidance into Righteous Fury (or another talent deep in the Prot tree, perhaps). That will remove much of the buffing complexity inherent with having a Prot paladin, but less than 3 paladins in total in a raid.

  14. I like the idea of raid-wide blessings but don't like the loss of functionality.

    I already feel like I should split out the hybrids. Two restos and an enhancement means that shammies get greater wisdom and SpaceMonkey Stormstriker gets a normal might...

    I would propose a mild modification to your fix.

    1) Normal blessings become what greater blessings are now. Duration is set to 30-min and they go on every member of the buffed class in your party/raid. They would not, however, require a reagent.

    2) Greater blessings require a reagent but now buff every member of the party/raid regardless of class. Duration is set to 1 hour.

    I would also say that a minor glyph be introduced that removes the reagent requirement from the greater blessings... I mean it isn't like we have great minors that we would have to drop to pick this up.

    In this model SpaceMonkey Stormstriker gets wisdom but he will just have to deal.

  15. Oh and one more thing...

    I really think Blessing of Salvation should be recreated as "improved kings". The other two trees have a way to improve "their" blessing.

    Improved Kings would add the damage reduction and mana gain from the current Salvation into Kings.

    Salvation already clashes with kings as it is with the Stamina and Strength increase.

  16. I wouldn't mind seeing Blessings become a one hour raid buff instead of a class buff and have single target buffs be a 30minute buff. Really my only complaint with Blessings as they are is the fact it takes 11 GCD to BoK a raid group.

    I doubt BoMight or BoWisdom will go away in Cataclysm. I would be inclined to think the buffs would simply change to something along the lines of a 3% damage boost and 3% regeneration boost. It falls inline with the mechanics of BoKings and BoSanctuary.

  17. I've been repeating your original idea about combining might and wisdom nonstop since you first posted the idea.

    At this point I don't care about possible nerfs or buffs. I just want the system as it exists now to be gone and dead forever.

  18. Well, my protection paladin has a wealthy leatherworker sponsor and carries the Drum of the Forgotten Kings (and the Drum of the Wild and soon Scrolls of Fortitude). She can thus hand out Sanctuary and 80% Kings when paired with another paladin and Might / Wisdom when alone.

  19. In defense of blessings, currently they do offer flexibility that would disappear if you had to choose between single person blessings and raid/party-wide blessings. With that choice you’d still end up with a pally power-like add on and probably just as many clicks, unless blessings were simplified along with the method of casting them.

    The party/raid-wide cast would work if the blessings were reduced to, say, Imp kings (which also incorporates Sanctuary, of which the 3% damage reduction is grossly underestimated in my opinion) and blessing of power, which then provides either attack power or mana regen appropriate to each class/spec.

  20. Happy Birthday Mr. Rohan!

  21. I think they should integrate PallyPower into the game similar to the shaman totem bar. You can preassign which blessings you want to cast on which classes. It will show what's missing (like PallyPower), but once you assign each class you can press a button that will buff everyone in the raid with one global cooldown. This eliminates us having to go through 8+ global cooldowns buffing a full raid.

  22. Keaton, that's actually not good enough. You still need to handle split-class blessings (ie Wisdom for moonkin + Might for ferals). PallyPower allows you to assign regular Blessings to specific people, and then cast those individual blessings by right-clicking the PallyPower UI.

    Left-click casts Greater Blessings on the class, and right-click casts regular Blessings on the designated individuals who lack the correct Blessing. Of course, the second part doesn't work properly in-combat, as Blizzard disables some of the functions needed. So, in-combat, you use the left pane where it lists the individual characters.

    PallyPower is actually fairly complicated UI-wise, and as such, I don't think it can be integrated into the Basic UI. It would be much easier to simplify the Blessing system itself.