Ret Paladin Deserves Slight Buff

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#1 - Nov. 21, 2022, 10:01 p.m.
Blizzard Post

I’m going to start this off by saying Blizzard has already stated that they will be watching class balance closely and that if a class becomes junk, they are open to making changes, but the community has to push for it. Here’s the article and quote:

“We will be watching class balance closely, and my perspective is we should just let it be, unless a class is pushed out entirely and the community says ‘this class is complete junk, we don’t even bring them anymore’ and then I think we should take a look at it”

With wrath ret being balanced around t10 set bonuses, the spec has been pretty much neutralized when it comes to being a DPS that is worth a raid spot in the first two phases. I play Ret on Benediction. I’ve consistently been in the upper 99% of ret players all the way through TBC to now. Last week I was #6 in the world for ret paladins on patchwerk and the only geared dps I managed to beat were a warlock and rogue who died to threat… and before you say anything yes I KNEW that ret would not being strong based on it’s 3.3 state and still chose to play it. This isn’t a HAHA YOU WERE WRONG ABOUT RET BEING GOOD moment. It’s about the fact that leaving it like this is ridiculous when originally rets were far better by comparison. They should be competent in their role for more than 3 months of this whole expac.

It has already been discussed within the guild that it doesn’t make sense to bring a ret paladin to our main raid now that splits are coming to an end and this is only naxx. Our dps is projected to get even worse in Ulduar compared to other classes. As a well known member of the Paladin Discord I’m aware that many other guilds are having this same conversation (even guilds that do not run splits). It’s a huge mistake to wait for a class to be pushed out of raid entirely before considering changes. The time frame in which a meaningful change for ret would happen if we waited that long would make the change itself irrelevant since we’d be closing in on ICC by then.

Ret is at a point where it will be complete junk for the entirety of the content that seems to be the main draw for this expansion, Ulduar. Yes we knew that ret on 3.3 would be bad, but that’s no excuse to leave it in this state when it’s a massive difference from how it originally performed. Is this a re-release or just a clone of a private server? Simply because private servers did something doesn’t mean it’s automatically the best possible course of action. There is no universe where leaving such a popular class in an essentially broken state until several weeks into ICC is good for the game.

I think that if the class is going to be balanced around a set bonus, it needs to exist in the game. It seems to me it would be incredibly fair to say, “you know what, since this class is balanced around a set bonus, we’re going to put that bonus on the paladin tier set in ulduar so they can out dps the tank.” (would like to hear other suggestions too this just seems like the lowest possible effort for blizz)

As it stands nearly every other class will scale harder with the coming ilvl increases than ret will . Some of them, like warriors, appear to be getting a nice buff due to this. The intent of the item level changes obviously isn’t to buff warriors but it’s having that effect and ZERO people are complaining about it. In fact almost everyone I know seems excited for warriors. Why? Because warriors are in a bad place just like ret. Is the spec still viable? Yes, because the content is so easy, but it’s pretty obvious that this is a healthy thing for warriors as a class, and potentially opens up some new theory crafting for raiders.

Personally I don’t need to dominate the meters to have fun, but when I see that I’m performing at the highest level and my damage still feels like a non-contribution something is clearly in need of change. And per blizzard the only way that happens is if we ask for it, so get in paladins we have to make ret mediocre again. And get ready for a ton of people to be toxic about this for no real reason.

Here’s a link to my Reddit post as well:

Ogb - Benediction

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WoW Classic Game Producer
#458 - Nov. 23, 2022, 9:01 p.m.
Blizzard Post

Hi Everyone,

The team has been looking at this thread and discussing the topic of class balance amongst ourselves a lot recently, and we wanted to take a moment to talk about class balance vs. spec balance and clarify some comments that we’ve made in recent discussions and interviews, and also generally explain our philosophy around class balance in Wrath Classic.

We’ve seen this quote and others like it that we’ve made increasingly taken out of context and it’s important to highlight a few key words here. Namely; “class” balance is the key word in this statement, and this might be being conflated with “spec” balance.

Using Paladins as an example, we are hard pressed to think of a class that is more well-represented in Wrath Classic raiding across multiple specializations. Holy is one of the strongest healing specs in Wrath of the Lich King, and Protection Paladins have never been stronger tanks. While Ret is not at the top of the meters relative to other damage specs, they provide stellar raid utility across the course of the entire expansion with several key raid buffs, including Sanctified Retribution, the effect of which is only shared by Beast Mastery Hunters (another spec that is traditionally seen as a PvP spec and has lower representation in raids) and Arcane Mages (a spec that scales well early, but starts to taper off later into the expansion). Additionally, late last week we fixed a bug with Hammer of Wrath that was causing it to not scale properly from Melee attack power, which should be a fairly significant increase to Retribution damage, especially on longer fights with sizable execute phases.

In general, we feel that Paladins are in an exceptionally strong position as a class and see no reason for any major changes at this time. The scenario in which we would step in to make a direct buff to baseline class functionality is quite specific and that’s when a class as a whole is at a point where they are almost never taken in raids across a broad spectrum of skill and performance levels. Having one spec be stronger than another is not a problem if the class itself is well represented. Also, if bleeding-edge groups going for realm firsts, or engaging in speed runs or other highly competitive activities choose to eschew a certain spec to hyper-optimize their setup, that alone is not a sufficient reason to make direct and inauthentic changes to a spec’s core functionality or scaling. Those groups simply do not represent the majority of the raiding population in Wrath Classic and we should not be attempting to balance the game around them.

I hope this helps clarify some of our previous statements. The team is watching this very closely, and we will take action if specific classes start to see a significant drop in inclusion in raid groups, but we are nowhere near feeling the need to do that at this time. The place we do not want to find ourselves in however is making a lot of inauthentic class changes and trying to chase perfect balance across every damage, healing, and tanking spec in the game during every phase of Wrath Classic. Doing so is extremely dangerous and we run the risk of damaging the original gameplay feel of individual classes and specs, which is directly counter to our design pillars for Wrath Classic.

Thanks to everyone for participating in the discussion!

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Community Manager
#511 - Nov. 23, 2022, 9:27 p.m.
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Sorry, folks. Sometimes we have to close a thread to stop it from becoming a big job for our moderators.

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