Posted by: Kro | April 2, 2010

Another Letter to Blizzard about Holy Paladins

Over at there is a letter to Blizzard outlining suggestions for holy paladin changes in Cataclysm in terms of increasing aoe and decreasing our tank heal niche.

Two of the proposed ideas were to add a stacking buff on the paladin with each flash of light cast that gives additional range to the holy light glyph. Another idea would be to have holy light leave behind a buff on the target that works similar to prayer of mending, the prayer would bounce not when the person takes damage but when they are tagged with a flash of light.

The general message is to integrate holy light and flash of light better so we don’t exclusively use one or the other. I can’t say that I necessarily agree with this conclusion.

My personal style of paladin healing involves mostly holy light bombing (who cares? that’s what all paladins do.) Well I also use a fair amount of flash of light. It may come from my roots in druid healing during vanilla or from being chained to my shaman healing in the Burning Crusade, but I can’t help raid healing, cross healing, and cheating my assignments.

You can’t cheat on the tanks every fight, many times you are locked onto beacon/sacred shield/judge/holy light bomb until refresh, but most fights there is plenty of wiggle room. I usually start a new encounter with the bomb method and tune it down with each attempt until im comfortable and then I cheat all the time.

The druids may get their hands dirty washing the raid in hots, priests are providing the soap bubbles, and shamans are causing the mess with their R. Kelly beams, but paladins are the brillo pad. Beacon your tanks and scrub them hard, but neglecting the raid or only using power strokes on really big messes is not using your full tool box. Just because I’m not glyphed/specd/and gemmed for flash of light doesn’t mean you can’t use it.  I spend a good amount of my time beaconing one tank, sacred shield/flash hot the other and zipping around the raid throwing out 10k/1 second flash of lights.

Well Kro.. if you like flash of light so much why dont you gem/spec/have kids and retire on a farm with it?

Flash of light builds don’t have the mana pools for the the holy bomb phases and thats an essential part of being a paladin. Only a second holy pally can go FoL all the time, the first must always (be able to) holy bomb (at any appropriate time)

Having played every healing class at max level at some point or another, a  hot that can only be placed on one person, ticks for 5-10k per second and constantly moves around the raid to the person who needs it most would be most welcome. It may have to be channeled but it lasts until canceled.

With a “hot” like that, and the ability to throw around pockets of 1.5-2.5k healing circles you’d have a decent ability to triage your raid healing. All this while Lifefacetious the phantom extra healer does your job for you and keeps the tank alive.

In conclusion, I don’t think paladins need a raid heal button that hybrids prayer of mending or any other raid healing ability.

Nerfing paladin tank healing in Cataclysm is probably a good idea. I’ve heard griping from 10 mans that say they need a paladin healer for one thing or another and they do certainly give an advantage but then again without a paladin healer you have a host of compensatory abilities. The grass is always greener. However, having one healer excel beyond the others in one area may be fun but I can see where it may stifle groups that don’t have that advantage.

Would I welcome a gogo gadget group heal ability in Cataclysm? Sure I suppose, but even if/when they nerf paladin tank healing, I still think we could pull our own as we stand now.



  1. The problem with 10-mans, is that most fights you get along fine without a holy paladin… but on the rare fight where the massive single/double-target throughput becomes utterly invaluable, you’re hugely handicapped for not having that paladin. The difference only shows up in certain fights, and only when pushed to the limit on those fights.

    Example: Heroic Saurfang 10 pre-wrynn. Now that you have a 10% buffer on everything, a holy paladin isn’t really too useful or helpful. Before? Utterly invaluable.

    Another example: Heroic VDW. I’m a geared, skilled resto druid. Your paladin is THREE of me. If I look at our usual healing meters it’s like this:
    Holy priest: X
    Resto druid: X
    Resto shaman: 1.5-2.0 X
    Holy paladin: 2.0-3.0 X

    If I have a raid comp consisting of a resto shaman, a resto druid, and a holy priest, I have 3.5 or 4 X. If i have a priest, a shaman, and a paladin, I have 4.5-6 X. That’s something like 50% more healing throughput. If you have two holy paladins and a priest, you’re rocking 5-7 X. For cutting-edge progression, the difference is stunning.

  2. absolutely, and I think griping may have been a strong word. It may certainly be a handicap to not have a holy paladin for Heroic Saurfang or Dreamwalker.

    Does the fight become impossible though? I’m not sure I would go that far, significantly more difficult yes I would agree.

    Ignoring which dps class you bring, because its possible your 10 man does or does not carry these classes as dps

    Pally, Priest, Druid – Missing Heroism
    Druid, Priest, Shaman – 1 pally buff / Handicapped on pally healing fights
    Pally, Priest, Sham, – Missing battle rez

    Battle rez is really invaluable when you are learning new fights, especially on a fixed amount of time. Not having to wipe an attempt because of an RNG death 6 minutes into a 10 minute fight can save you oodles.

    Of those 3 combos, would you trade heroism or battle rez for your entire progression timeline. It may not be fair to have some fights c-blocked for a class, but I would say it evens out pretty significantly in the long run.

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