4.0 [Holy] Talents Revisted

This past Tuesday 4.0.3a went live and the world experienced a Cataclysm of epic proportions, changing and scarring the face of Azeroth forever. What also occurred at the same time as the sundering of the world was a re-balancing of healing class including holy paladins. As a result, our talents were reset regardless of our specialization. In light of the changes, I will be taking a look an updated talent builds and include gylph changes as well as patch changes.

There have been some changes sense the original launch that I have analyzed and tested and decided a better route. Let’s start off by taking a look at a talent build:

Holy Tier 1: 2/3 Protector of the Innocent – 3/3 Judgements of the Pure

Holy Tier 2: 3/3 Clarity of Purpose – 2/2 Last Word

Holy Tier 3: 1/1 Divine Favor – 2/2 Infusion of Light – 2/2 Daybreak

Holy Tier 4:  2/2 Enlightened Judgements  – 1/1 Beacon of Light – 3/3 Speed of Light – 1/1 Sacred Cleansing

Holy Tier 5: 3/3 Conviction – 2/2 Paragon of Virtue

Holy Tier 6: 3/3 Tower of Radiance

Holy Tier 7: 1/1 Light of Dawn

Protection Tier 1: 3/3 Divinity

Retribution Tier 1: 2/3 Crusade

Since the original build with the new mechanics, I have worked with Eternal Glory (Prot Tier 1) and decided that at our current point level, the proc chance is not high enough to deduct a point from Crusade and the boost to healing for Holy Shock. Also, with the deficit in our Judgement distances I have still opted for 2/2 in Enlightened Judgements instead of Aura mastery for distance utility. I am not excluding the base of utility of Aura Mastery by any means.

This build is specifically designed for PVE healing and does not take into consideration any leveling talents that may be beneficial or PVP focus points like Blessed Life. This build emphasizes strong end-game healing with a few debatable and optional talents including Aura Mastery, Enlightened Judgements, Paragon of Virtue, and Eternal Glory.

What 4.0.3a brings to spells…

Beacon of Light now lasts 5 minutes, up from 60 seconds.

This change is for the greater good as it brings along a multitude of effects. Not only does it remove the extra GCD every 1-1.5 minutes but it also reduces the amount of mana that is used to refresh this. The mana cost at this spell is 6% base mana. At an approximate 3000 base mana, that is 180 mana, so over the course of 5 minutes (the current duration) we save 720 mana (given an unglyphed duration). These numbers may not be significant given our 40k+ mana pools but I have not looked at base mana amounts in a while either and we could see these numbers be much more drastic if they were in the Level 85 bracket.

Holy Radiance now has reduced effectiveness on targets over 8 yards away from the paladin.

Why this is implemented into a pre-Cataclysm patch I will never understand given that this spell is beyond our capabilities until we reach Level 83. However, when we received direct healing spell boosts, we were given the compromise that this spell would be rebalanced to reflect those changes and this is the manner in which the mechanics were implemented.

Holy Radiance now has reduced effectiveness on targets over 8 yards away from the paladin.

I have never considered this to be a PVE talent even though I did hear of some consistent procs with this in 5-Mans, I cannot vouch for its viability in raid settings prior to this change; since this change it is not optimal or viable for end-game PVE though it could be taken into consideration for leveling.

lluminated Healing absorb shield now absorbs 10% of the total amount healed, up from 8%. Each point of Mastery increases the effect by an additional 1.25%, up from 1%.

Whoa baby! It is great to see a boost to our mastery. It is reported that WoL (WorldofLogs) does not reflect this but I can neither confirm or deny but Recount meters have been updated to take this into consideration. With this boost we should see a boost in absorbs and stands to make mastery a little more appealing. Also as reported in the original PTR build (13221) the duration of this has been increased to 8 seconds.

Light of dawn has been redesigned. It no longer has an enforced cooldown, now costs Holy Power instead of mana, and scale in direct proportion to the amount of Holy Power used. In addition it now heals the 5 most injured group targets (including self) in a 30-yard frontal cone.

This is not a nerf. Contrary to my first observations of this, I have discovered that this is a smart heal and while you still do not need a target, you must direct yourself in the appropriate direction if you expect to heal anyone.

Protector of the Innocent no longer triggers from self-heals.

This is really neither good nor bad. It really shouldn’t effect the situation if you are already healing yourself…right?

Crusade now also has a proc on kill to increase the healing done by the paladin’s next Holy Light by 100/200/300% for 15 seconds, in addition to its current effects.

Given the fact that we are looking at PVE end-game healing at the moment, this change doesn’t have any direct effects for by the time we reach the kill, we are not direly pressed to get heals off in most cases. There could be some cases, i.e. Frozen Orbs linger after Torovon, when it could be helpful but this is primarily a leveling change or ret soloing change.

Implemented Glyph Changes

I will do a full glyph analysis after Cataclysm’s release as I expect to see some more changes, I know of one (Lay on Hands) that Wowhead does not show its implementation yet. So I will talk about the ones that are directly effected by this patch and its rebalancing.

Glyph of Beacon of Light (Major)

In my honest opinion, the changes to Beacon of Light (the 5 minute duration) opens up another slot for us to chose another glyph. Perhaps the new and improved Glyph of Light of Dawn I will talk about in a minute. But as far as this glyph goes, I don’t see the necessity in saving 6% base mana on something I am only going to cast every 5 minutes. We may not even see some fights last that long and what would eliminate the utility of this glyph.

Glyph of Light of Dawn (Major)

This is very similar to the Glyph of Circle of Healing that priests have always had. This can really up the utility of our end tree talent as long as we can maximize the spell’s conal direction factor. I strongly recommend replacing Glyph of Beacon of Light with this more functional glyph.

So there you have it, the analysis of the reset specs and latest glyph changes. I hope that when you are trying to make your way through the scary new world, at least the mechanics and informational aspects don’t have to be so scary.

Remember that you can always ask questions or if you want clarifcations you can leave comments and/or email me at tarinae @ gmail [dot] com.

Disclaimer: Aside from 6%, numbers used for Beacon’s mana use are not actual, only representational.



Filed under Holy Paladin

5 responses to “4.0 [Holy] Talents Revisted

  1. I’m looking forward to using glyphed LOD with max stacks of HoPo. Even with 50% beacon, still that’s a whole lot of healing on the beaconed tank. 😀

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  3. I’m going to argue that Aura Mastery is NOT a debatable or optional talent. I wouldn’t bring a holy paladin to a raid (at least a heavily elemental raid like ICC) who didn’t spec into Aura Mastery. Now that we’ve lost Divine Sac, Aura Mastery is our only easy-to-use damage reduction CD (unless another was added during the month I was away, but I doubt it!). Aura Mastery usage is a big part of how I evaluate a holy paladin: are they using it at the right moments? If there are no specific times to use it, do they keep it on CD? Cooldown usage is essential to healing and refusing to spec into such an accessible damage reduction talent is disrespectful to your raid.

    I agree with the rest, and I wish they’d add LoD to the Eternal Glory talent. I did enjoy the talent in 4.0.1 (but won’t argue that its optional) but now that LoD uses Holy Power, EG looses a lot of its appeal since I won’t be using Word of Glory quite as much.

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