Protection Paladin Feedback

#1 - April 25, 2018, 2:38 a.m.
Blizzard Post
Here is some feedback on the Protection Paladin going into BFA based on my time tanking Mythic raids in Legion and playing the BFA Alpha/Beta. My post is focused on the problems of Paladin tanks. Feel free to post your thoughts too.

Light of the Protector and the GCD
Why are reactive healing abilities on the GCD? It kills any min/maxing of the rotation and heal. It forces a trade of SOTR CDR from Judgment or Consecration uptime to heal myself. With the changes to SOTR and the loss of the Consecration duration artifact trait, this is a much bigger loss in BFA. And with how little margin for error a Paladin tank has in general, the difference between being able to reactively heal and not is a matter of life and death.

Light of the Protector Scaling
It does really well on the pre-mades in 185 gear but in the 120 scaled Islands or the 120 scaled raid testing Light of the Protector doesn't scale as well. Based on raid testing, Light of the Protector heals for no more than 20% of my health for non-critical heals. I would look at how it scales relative to player health so it keeps up and stays as an important part of the Paladin tank kit.

Avenging Wrath on the GCD
Avenging Wrath can be used as a survival cooldown or it can be used as a DPS cooldown. With it being on the GCD, we lose a lot of flexibility to decide when we can use it. We have to trade SOTR CDR from Judgment or Consecration uptime for it. Just think about the actual pull of a boss or a trash pack. I Avenging Wrath and maybe Seraphim on the pull, then I can start drop Consecration, or Judge? That's 1-3 seconds of deadtime where we trade all of our survivability for cooldowns and frankly more vulnerable to death. I could SOTR then run in on the pull but using SOTR outside of Consecration is poor play. And I'll go back to some of the same reasoning as the Light of the Protector GCD issue. The difference between Paladins and another tank is that the moment to moment decisions matter on a Paladin because the margin for error is so much smaller.

Talent Tier Level 75
This is the number #1 problem tier headed into BFA. Hand of the Protector is generally seen as the “default” choice of this talent tier. The shorter cooldown our self heal is going to be a god send for any content. And frankly, the other two talents aren’t up to its level in any type of fashion. Final Stand is bad and should not exist. The situations in Legion where it was useful are countable on one hand. And Unbreakable Spirit is a nice add but it’s only going to be taken for the AD CDR, if at all. The value of the Lay on Hands or Divine Shield portions are non-existent. Finally, if you look at pick rates in logs, its picked by 85% of players on all Mythic Antorus Raid encounters, 89% of all Mythic Tomb of Sargeras encounters and 87% of all Mythic Nighthold encounters. This tier is basically a non-choice in current state.

Talent Tier Level 90
This is the number #2 problem talent tier headed into BFA. All three choices, if you can call them that, are sad and don’t feel meaningful. The only thing that feels meaningful is the snare on Consecrated Ground. Otherwise, Judgment of Light and Aegis of Light never really feel like meaningful choices. Judgment is usually default because it’s just free passive healing. But the healing is ultimately not significant when compared to similar mechanics. And Aegis of Light has a number of usability issues in group content. For example, it limits the use of abilities for 6 seconds and it places teammates directly behind the tank which is a poor place to group in many cases. This talent tier can be summarized as the following: ‘Do I need to kite/snare mobs? If not, take Judgment of Light.’ It’s not fun, meaningful or interesting.

Consecrated Hammer
This talent should not exist. With good play, you’ll get far more significant value from Holy Shield or Blessed Hammer. It’s not a valid talent option for any type of serious play.

Retribution Aura
This talent should not exist. Its <1% damage total and not worth losing the double horse or Spell Warding. And this is even truer in a world where Divine Steed and magic DR are both nerfed.
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Game Designer
#37 - May 24, 2018, 4:52 a.m.
Blizzard Post
A few changes to Protection in an upcoming build. Mostly focused on smoothing out issues in the core rotation and active mitigation.

  • Consecration no longer buffs Shield of the Righteous and Light of the Protector
  • Consecration cooldown 4.5s (from 9s) and duration 12s (from 9s), but you can only have one down at once
  • Mastery: Divine Bulwark reduces all damage you take while in Consecration (instead of increasing Shield of the Righteous effectiveness)
  • Avenger's Shield increases the effects (damage and armor) of your next Shield of the Righteous by 20%
  • Consecrated Hammer will be replaced with a new L15 talent

Listing all at once because they're all pieces of the same goals. First, Avenger's Shield is back to having some baseline defensive value, which pulls the rotation together by making you care about both hit and Hammer of the Righteous other than for pickups/damage.

Second, Consecration is easier to work with. If you don't have to move, you have to replace it less often, and if you do have to move, you can replace it much more quickly. While standing in Consecration still has some value, your core buttons no longer rely on it, and the loss of mitigation from being outside it is much smaller than Legion. It also provides a small source of baseline magic mitigation.

Finally, the gap between Shield of the Righteous uptime and downtime, in terms of mitigation, is less dramatic. The previous mastery made that gap get wider and wider as the expansion went on, leading to the problem of increasing moments of vulnerability when active mitigation was down. Shield of the Righteous will now have more consistent value across the expansion. The spec will be tuned expecting slightly lower Shield of the Righteous strength and uptime compared to Legion, which helps avoid the problem where there were windows of very poor mitigation compared to other tanks.
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Game Designer
#101 - June 9, 2018, 2:48 a.m.
Blizzard Post
We are looking at a change to Block (for all classes), where it would not share DR with your base armor. This won't be in the next build though.

The next build will slightly increase the value of the Consecration effect from mastery. There's a disadvantage to having the mastery split between two effects, where each is weaker than it otherwise would be. But we also want to be careful with making Consecration's damage reduction too strong, where the damage swing in stepping in/out of it might be uncomfortable again.
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Game Designer
#139 - June 28, 2018, 7:12 p.m.
Blizzard Post
06/28/2018 11:14 AMPosted by Âeons
06/25/2018 01:25 PMPosted by Axyorix
I can say that I am not enjoying Avengers augmenting SoTR... it just seems odd.

It is odd to begin with. But the fact that it doesn't continue the "bonus" buff if you use SoTR again, is a bit frustrating on top of that.

If you overlap a buffed Shield of the Righteous with an unbuffed one, or vice versa, it should average together the two armor values based on the duration remaining, rather than simply overwriting one with the other. This is similar to how Shield of the Righteous behaved in the past with e.g. temporary mastery buffs.