Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Enlightened Judgements Nerf, why so much druid love ?

This will be a bit of a rant on the evolution of the Holy Paladin class in both Arena & PvE.

Ok, so Ghostcrawler, our always favourite crab, came on the forums to calm a little bit of the druid QQ happening in Arean season5.
Judgement of Justice vs. Druids
We are concerned about JoJ vs. druids. We have a change coming up (or maybe it's out already) that will improve the situation from the druid POV, but it isn't shifting breaking JoJ.

"Are you talking about no 40 yard JoJs from holy paladins, or something else? The enlightened judgements nerf isnt on the PTR (I don't think...) but it is in your updated patchnotes."
Yes, that's it. We originally extended the range for Holy paladins so they could hang back to heal and still judge, but a 40 yard range JoJ is pretty brutal to druids. We think its is going to be a lot less of an issue when the paladin has to run up to snare you. This in turn should let druids run away and drink or heal. We don't think this change alone will provide the big buff Resto druids may be looking for. But we also think it will definitely be felt.

Ok, druids are not shining in season 5, but oh man weren't they the gods of the arena during season 3 and 4 ? I don't see them worse than priests by the way. It's just due to two simple reasons, that have nothing to do with class balance:
  • damage is too high
  • resilience is too low
If the first won't change, the second will with the incoming seasons, and will mitigate the first. I predict you the return of "invincible healers" relatively soon in season 6.

Now druids were so strong before that Blizzard partly designed a whole class to conter them, namely DKs.
With patch 3.1, DKs see their hot removal skill changed to s simple dps, so no more hot removal for druids.
Now holy paladins see the only skill preventing the "shapechange flee drink" nerfed too, so that druids can no longer be prevented to escape you unless you stun them.

If I agree that holy paladins are too numerous in the arena (but then, why hunters are not singled out the same way ?), this is not due to the fact they are too strong, it is due to the fact that they are the only healers not being smashed to dust in 15s by a 2 dps burst team ... but he, bubble removal added to the warriors, nerf of Sacred Shield and judgements, nerf of the fast Holy Light on a Holy Shock crit. Several of our mains tools for the arena are being strongly nerfed.
Ok, ok, you won't see much Holy Paladins in arena play again Blizzard, just lets repeat the same as during BC and we'll be nice and wait for the next expansion ... probably in another game, if you don't want us to play WoW.

To add salt to the wound, one of our best PvE skill gets nerfed badly too. Quoting our loved crab:
Sacred Shield
Sacred Shield was possibly only a problem in PvP on the larger teams (or for rage generation, but we fixed that separately). It was really a PvE problem because the damage prevention was really starting to add up in Ulduar. We know this was supposed to be one of the answers for how paladins can "group heal." However, you shouldn't need to do a ton of group healing in raids, and in PvP or heroic dungeons, you should still have enough tools to manage: fast heals, the HL glyph, Beacon, etc.
Yay ! Our only spell really effective when a lot of raid damage was going to happen is now ... limited to our tank.
Ok perhaps it was a bit too strong in Ulduar, but I really don't like that sentence "However, you shouldn't need to do a ton of group healing in raids". When aoe damage stacks, paladins are the less desirable healers. When fights require a lot of mobility (Hodir anyone?), paladins are the less desirable healers. Removing our single best raid tool is a sad thing. The only real strength of paladins right now is mana efficiency, and mana is a non-issue for the moment, so paladins are sadly the less desirable healers in WotLK up to now. Looking at such comments from a lead designer does make me grim for the future too.

Don't get me wrong, I don't hate druids. But looking at how they are loved and we are nerfed (I don't want to use hated but that feels like that) doesn't make me a happy paladin.


  1. I feel the same way you do.. T.T

    I don't care if I am QQing but I know they are going about the nerfing wrong and it sucks knowing there is nothing we can do but QQ about it...

    I've raided in TBC and it wasn't fun being treated as a worse healer just because I couldn't aoe heal my way up the charts (Usually #3 or 4). I was regarded as good because somehow I managed to heal certain 5 man dungeons that other healer classes can easily manage but not other holy paladins. This has so long been the norm that no one thinks it strange that holy paladins are still stuck where they were in the past and now they are making it even more so again. -.-

    I'm going to QQ if I want to dammit!

  2. I personally was prot during TBC, but I have seen how holy paladins were shining during the first months, and then were gradually reduced to fill-up healers when priests, druids and, more than anyone else, shamans were missing.

    I think healing paladins are great right now, we have a more complex and interesting gameplay, and an astonishing ability to do some endurance healing.

    The problem is that the content does not suit us:
    - mana regen is too strong, so our mana endurance doesn't means much;
    - mana reagen is so strong it's all about "fast healing" to "top the meters";
    - a lot of raid encounters require mobility, or contain a lot of aoe damage (the worst weakness of a holy paladin).

    And then, looking at Ulduar that will contain more of these mobility/aoe damage fights, we get nerfed on some of our best abilities for rapid healing/raid damage prevention.

    That's what makes me feel that we're experiencing TBC again, "to the ground baby!"
    I think he really should have thought this day before saying that ...