Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Class Feedback - Holy Paladin

Blizzard is asking for class feedback on the official forums. I'm posting my response here as well.

1. What type of content do you focus on? [PvE/PvP/Both]

PvE - Holy paladin healing

2. If PvE, what type of PvE? [Heroics/Raids/Other]

Hard mode and Normal mode 25-man raiding.

3.  What are your biggest quality-of-life issues? For instance, no longer requiring ammo could be considered a quality-of-life improvement for hunters.

I think the Holy Paladin is in a really good place for those types of issues. Our previous issues with Blessings have mostly gone away.

I guess one issue would be the fact that our minor glyphs are pretty terrible and uninteresting.

About the only important quality of life issue I have is placement of weapons on raid bosses. Sometimes I think that Blizzard forgets that Holy Paladins are the only healing spec which cannot use staves or daggers. This expansion, the healing maces have entirely been on all three end bosses.  For one thing this means that it's a long time before we upgrade weapons when we start a tier. As well, being in a guild at my level--which kills some heroic bosses but not all of them--means I will never get a Heroic weapon.

4. What makes playing your class more fun?

The lore, plate armor, the general structure of our spells, utility spells like Hand of Sacrifice and Hammer of Judgement.

As an example, one of the best things this tier is the fact that I'm assigned to stun one of the Sons of Flame on Ragnaros. I quite enjoy getting the chance to use "signature" paladin abilities as Holy.

Also, Hammer of Wrath. Pretty much anytime you get to use Hammer of Wrath the game becomes better. If Blizzard could somehow work Hammer of Wrath into the healing rotation that would awesome. (Not really serious, but it would be great if it happened.)

5. What makes playing your class less fun?

To me, the emphasis on "active" mana regeneration through Judgement and Divine Plea makes playing less fun. It devalues Spirit and healing efficiently. I like Judging, but I don't like the fact that Judging every 8 seconds, or using Divine Plea on cooldown, makes such a huge difference mana-wise.  Some more lenience on Judging or using Divine Plea would be nice.

Another thing is that we don't stack as well as the other classes do. My guild has 3 holy paladins with very good attendance. If all three of us are in the same raid, it really feels like the raid would be significantly better if that third paladin was a different class. I imagine the same thing would apply to the 2nd paladin healer in a 10-man.

A final "less fun" element is the tension between being in melee or at range. Some abilities like Holy Radiance push us towards melee, but other effects push us away. For example, last night I was assigned to heal the melee on Ragnaros. I figured that I would just stand with them and I could use Holy Radiance in P1. But apparently Ragnaros' ranged knockback effect targets Holy Paladins, and I managed to knock all the melee into the lava. Then I had to stand away from them, and that made healing them all up harder than it needed to be.

6. How do you feel about your “rotation”? (Rotation is the accepted order in which abilities are used to maximum efficiency.)

I really like the Cataclysm rotation. We use a variety of spells for great effect. Adding 100% Beacon transfer to Holy Light was a great change.

I would like to judge slightly less often, maybe on the order of once every 15 seconds or so. Once every 8 seconds is just a bit too many GCDs taken from healing.

7. What’s on your wish list for your class?

I would like to see AoE healing strengthened a little bit. Heavy AoE phases really make me feel useless, especially when you are the 2nd or 3rd paladin.

I would like a little more proactive healing for non-tanks. For tanks we can do things like Hand of Sacrifice or get good use of our mastery. But healing non-tanks is almost entirely reactive direct healing (other than Aura Mastery). Personally, I'd kill for a real HoT.

Finally, I'd like to see Divine Intervention and bubble-hearth come back. Those were iconic abilities for paladins.

8. What spells do you use the least?

I think that we use all our spells in a reasonable fashion. Flash of Light is getting a bit squeezed out because we have Holy Shock and Word of Glory for speed, but it has its uses.

I think the only major paladin spell that has gone out of fashion is Consecration. It costs too much mana to use even irregularly. In contrast, I will occasionally use Holy Wrath for random AoE damage or to help stun elementals.


  1. Well done.

    I think the only major paladin spell that has gone out of fashion is Consecration. It costs too much mana to use even irregularly.

    From the perspective of this Ret Pally, I agree completely. It's too mana heavy to use much at all. There's spot usage in battlegrounds (such as around flags) but that's about it.

  2. All sounds good. From a 10-man perspective I'd also add that Light of Dawn is so situational that it doesn't deserve its ultimate talent spot.

    I think we need a different HoPo finisher. A self buff like Inquisition, maybe, or a mana refund. A haste buff would provide good synergy with Radiance for AoE healing.

  3. I think the only major paladin spell that has gone out of fashion is Consecration.

    Pre-Cata I hoped they'd give it an spec-specific effect:

    Ret: +Damage
    Prot: +Thread
    Holy: +Healing

    I still think that Consecration should be a key ability of our class. Hey, we consecrate an area around as! That should really mean something, shouldn't it?

  4. Interesting feedback. Regarding quality of life, I completely agree. Somehow, Healadins have now been limited to only one weapon type: a one-handed mace.

    You know what'd be cool? A two-handed healing mace!

  5. "You know what'd be cool? A two-handed healing mace!"

    YES! and it should be ON FIRE.

  6. On fire? Alright, let's not get carried away here.