Tuesday, August 3, 2010

As the Flux Ebbs

Just a while ago blues hit us with a huge update on the current state of Prot.
Remember that while reading this they may have already changed some or all of it as it seems that our tree continues to shift.
I apologise or the inc wall of text but I feel this Is really needed all in one go.

Here is how Prot paladins are working in our current beta build. You might not see these changes in the next beta build, but in the one after that. Things are still in a high degree of flux however.

Shield of the Righteous -- Now consumes Holy Power to cause damage.

Holy Shield -- Now a passive ability that causes your Shield of the Righteous to provide 5% block per stack of Holy Power consumed. In other words, you never click Holy Shield. You just click Shield of the Righteous and buff yourself.

Hammer of the Righteous -- Now generates Holy Power but shares a cooldown with Crusader Strike. Almost all talents that affect one or the other will affect both. The intention is you use Crusader Strike -> Shield of the Righteous for single target and Hammer of the Righteous -> Shield of the Righteous for multitarget.

Avenger's Shield -- No real change, but it still hits pretty hard. Both CS and HotR can proc Grand Crusader to lower the Avenger's Shield cooldown.

Vindication -- can be caused only by Crusader Strike or Hammer of the Righteous.

Holy Wrath -- With the above changes, we think Prot paladins have enough rotational buttons to hit, so we are downplaying Holy Wrath. Holy Wrath is really intended as a Ret filler spell (for when other attacks are on cooldown). Prot could technically use Holy Wrath, but we aren't providing any talent hooks.

Consecration -- Now on a 10 sec duration with a 30 sec cooldown. The Hallowed Ground talent makes it cheaper and hit harder -- it does not affect duration. Use Consecration when you need it, but you can't spam it. This is consistent with the AE changes we are making to all tanks.

With these changes in mind, Prot will be thinking about buttons such as these:

Single Target: Judgement, Crusader Strike, Shield of the Righteous, Avenger's Shield.
Multi-target: Judgement, Consecration, Hammer of the Righteous, Shield of the Righteous, Avenger's Shield, possibly Exorcism.

None of this includes things like Seals, Inquisition, defensive cooldowns, Word of Glory, etc.

So with Vindication off of Holy Wrath, is it intended that Prot Paladins are the only tank without an AoE Physical Damage debuff, or will similar changes be made to the Warrior/Druid/DK mechanics?
Hammer of the Righteous will be AoE enough. It hits many targets. It may not be as widespread as Demo Shout on a pull like a jillion Onyxia Whelps, but we don't really expect you to debuff pulls of that size.

Let me just clarify something - Hammer of the Righteous will generate 1 Holy Power per cast, or 1 Holy Power per target hit?

One per cast. Otherwise we think paladins might want to always be hitting multiple targets, like "Let me tank the boss and one of the adds or my Holy Power generation will be low."

Is Holy Wrath going to have the same model it currently has? As a split damage ability?
Yeah, we like the split damage because it lets Ret (and Prot if needed) use it in most situations.

Also will 3 stacks of holy power when using shield of the righteousness roughly equal the amount of threat it did before it got removed or is it changed?
It will be a hard-hitting button, especially with 3 stacks. I'd guess your highest damage ability.

So some interesting changes for us. I'm not sure I like Holy Shield being tied to SHoR. While its probably a logical step from allowing SHoR to refresh HS it almost kills HS outright, and makes it like some kind of SHoR Libram.
For the changes to AoE and how this effects us, I am liking that we have a clear idea of how our rotations are going to look in AoE situations vs single target but I really like HotR and loosing it as a spell I will use in a boss fight is sad. Also if this is an indication of whats to come then AoE is being completely gutted and I can guarantee that Warriors no longer have their "Consecration". However only being able to AoE every 30sec with the odd off rotation HW to fill in the aggro seems almost to low, maybe not for the start of the expansion but defiantly for latter when we can once again chain pull heroics.

Overall whether these changes stay or not its a very strong incite to how we can expect things to change from today. I quite like most of the changes particularly being able to use HoPo for more than just HS upkeep I just hope that HS wont be lost for good as they endeavor to tidy this current SHoR/HS system up more.

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