This is a compilation of ideas for the Paladin class, not a final design for them or a coherent vision for the class.
Feel free to contribute. Keep in mind class balance whilst posting, and try to see the issue from a developer's point of view as well as your own.
These are broad issues that Paladins want addressed.
- Melee Hybrid Utility
Paladins are intended to be on the front line, as stated by Blizzard, and from that postion we should be able to provide a combination of our utility, healing, tanking and damage dealing capability. For this they need to be able to heal/support effectively, whilst still meleeing/being in melee range.
- Increased interactivity.
Paladin solo play is usually fairly simple, only becoming interesting in group situations, notably when things go wrong. To increase how interesting things are for the player, paladins need to have choices that they can make of significance- abilities for the right place at the right time.
- Character stat based utility.
Much like a shadow priests' VE and VT, Paladins have desired a visbile and scaling group contribution, something more obvious than a passive stat increase, and something that represents character development.
- Developed class specific abilities.
The seal/judge system is unique to the paladin and is quite simplistic despite some attention. Their buffs, blessings and Auras, are barely addressed by talents. These elements do not interact with each other at all.
- Viability in chosen high-level PvE role.
Paladins, as all hybrids, have suffered to varying degrees in our various role choices.
- Fix various lackluster/ineffectual talents/abilities.
Issues that require a little tweaking.
Toggled Aura abilities
Essentially a 2nd aura type that can be applied to the Paladin's active aura to change its effect.
- A seperate row of auras that can be applied.
An ability which increases potency of an aura by draining the paladin's mana.
An ability which increases the potency of an aura by focussing it onto only the paladin. Increases per person in the paladin's group/aura range. Diminishing returns.
Whilst for balance issues an easy 300 fire resistance or +50% holy damage might be too much, the ability for paladins' auras to mesh effectively is a problem. An abilityto stack auras, with appropriate diminishing returns, would be very wecome.
- Auras can stack up to 5 times, similar to the charges mechanism.
- Each charge does half as much as the charge before it, for a maximum of 193.75% power when compared to current auras.
Conclusion In this way paladins don't lose too much power when grouping, and while the Auras are less powerful overall they are potentially more useful.
Seals and Judgements
- Changed so that it feels more like a melee ability.
- Low weapon dmg (5%) component added.
- Melee dmg only added if judged at a closer range, still functions at current range.
- Physical based crit.
Light and Wisdom
- Effect scales with weapon speed- to eliminate disparity between one and two handed weapons.
- AoE group effect- further paladin usefulness in melee.
- Effect determined by damage done.
Seal of the Heavenly Choir
Increases spell potency of the paladin, its Judgement giving some defence in caster combat.
- Unique in that it is a seal useful to casting.
- Base ability.
- Passive bonus to spell power. Procs a next cast casting speed bonus.
- Judgement places a 4 second debuff on the target, which cannot be refreshed.
- JotHC: 100% chance for next cast to be resisted/fail(in the case of healing).
Conclusion Kind of like a caster equivelent of SotC. Doesn't deviate too much from melee centricity, whilst providing something for Shockadin types. The Judgement's pseudo silence might use some tweaking, though I wanted to avoid a flat out silence; and higher resistance through combat is very fitting.
Seal of Sanctuary
Blessing of Sanctuary is replaced with a seal of similar nature, a protection seal with primary focus on highest mitigation, at the expense of some theat generation.
- Int counting as mitigation
- Unique seal for Protection paladins.
- Eliminates BoSanc/BoK same tree talented blessing issue.
- Tries to address the problem of increased avoidance meaning less threat.
- JoSanc allows off-role utility for the prot spec, and increased pvp utility.
- Makes Paladins remarkably like Jedi...which can only be a good thing.
- Seal of Sanctuary:While the seal is active chance to parry is increased, determined by int amount. Deals holy dmg when you parry, instead of when you block. Dmg scales with spell dmg.
- Judgement of Sanctuary- applies a debuff- hits by target will deal less damage. This affect can only occur once every six seconds, and once per application/refreshment of JoSanc.
Judgments Light, Wisdom and Crusader are linked to an ability that gives the paladin the option of focusing the benefits of the judgement onto one target for a burst-like quality. New base ability.
- Further complexity and individuality.
- Gives notably JoL a greater viability.
- Allows cross class use of all judgements,ie: a rogue can gain benefit from JoW, in the sense that he is generating mana for casters.
- After applying a Judgement, the paladin can activate Resounding Judgement. When active, player's hits do not recieve proc effects, instead they provide charges for the Paladin's ability Resounding, on the current per-hit proc basis.
- The Paladin can then execute the ability, using up the charges:
- Instant Cast.
- Castable on friendly targets in Aura distance.
- Light provides a heal, Wisdom provides a mana increase and Crusader a next Holy attack holy dmg buff, and next attack Crit chance bonus if improved.
- Crusader and imp. Crusader effects would be split up, and classes without Holy attacks would not recieve the Holy buff.
- Activation has a cooldown of 30 seconds, and lasts for a maximum of 35 seconds- If it is not executed in that time the effect will dissipate.
- Resounding judgements have a maximum effect- a number of charges at which they will no longer accumulate. Once this occurs the Judgements then act as normal.
Conclusion It'd be prefferable if the 'charge' system was invisible and not ala Vengeance. Shame about the Crusader/Imp crusader effect split, can't please everyone all the time right?
Seals are focused into the Paladin's weapon, increasing potency and making them exempt from dispellig effects, but keep them from being judged.
- Diversity in the seal-judge-seal system.
- Addresses a common complaint about a paladin's combat system being nullified by purge.
- Increased impact from chosen seal.
- Less reliance on procs.
- Base ability.
- Thirty second duration.
- Shares cooldown with Judgement
- Seal-embed similar to the seal-judge mechanic.
- Embedded seals are replaced if re-sealed as now.
- From an embedded state, seals cannot be purged or judged.
- Embedded seals effects:
- Righteousness- Increased passive dmg bonus.
- Light- 95% of weapon damage is converted to health, by a factor of 3dmg to 2 health.
- Wisdom- 95% of weapon damage is converted to mana, by a factor of 4 dmg to 1 mana.
- Justice- Additional chance to daze for 2 seconds.
- Command- All damage from autoattack becomes holy and is increased by 25%
- Crusade- Additional 10% chance for an extra strike of 10% weapon dmg.
- Blood- Higher damage bonus.
- Vengeance- 50% of damage is converted to a holy DoT.
- Heavenly Choir- Additional +20 to all resists.
Conclusion This is intended to offer a real alternative in some situations, whilst not replacing any of the seals themselves.
Having the "Guardian Blessing" (such as the Blessing of Freedom) override the "Battle Blessings" (Blessing of Might) causes extreme amount of game play issues, especially as the tank. The current system truly is unweildy. To clarify, this proposal would mean a single paladin can have one Guardian Blessing and one Battle Blessing active on the same target.
- Guardian blessings.
- Battle blessings
Classed as a stun alongside the passive on-hit ones, or short CD ones, HoJ- with its long cooldown- suffers disproportionately from stun resist. It is something of a pivotal spell which has resulted in suggestions of its cooldown to be decreased, or chance to be resisted slashed. While either of these would be valid solutions, there is an element of an arms race with those ones, which amongst other things means that it would only be a temporary solution. A more code exaustive solution, a happy medium of the others, does exist.
- When HoJ is resisted, the cooldown of the spell is refreshed.
It is something of a compromise. On the one hand the Paladin's mana has been spent, the GCD wasted, the well timed stun thwarted. On the other they still have the opportunity to cast this vital spell again, perhaps to acheive near the effect they hoped for. If needs be, the cooldown could be increased to say 5 seconds after being resisted.
- Purifying Power
With most classes that apply debuffs having talents that prevent us from dispelling them, our ability to remove them has diminished. Not to mention the additional misc. debuffs classes don't actively apply.
- Holy talent.(2 Points)
- Reduces the chance your Cleanse and Purify abilities will fail by 5%/10% and allows your Cleanse and Purify spells to dispell an additional poison and disease/poison, disease, and magic effect.
Tries to avoid an arms race between debuffing/cleansing, while still addressing what must surely have been an unintentional situation of 'light debuffs' being cleanse fodder for their heavier sires. Might need to change the times and chances, not sure if much gets calculated in 1/4 of a second.
- After a successful cleanse, the target has a chance to become briefly nullified to the lingering effects of that school's magic/disease/poison.
- Holy talent. (2 points)
- 10% chance per remaining applicable debuff to activate the talent.
- The effects of debuffs of that school do not apply for 0.25/0.5 seconds per applicable debuff. The debuffs still remain however.
- Maximum of 2.5/5 seconds duration.
- Can be applied to multiple schools simultaneously.
This spell doesn't have alot of utility. Sure its quite powerful, but sadly won't see all that much use. Spell divided up so that it recharges over a shorter period of time.
- Every 15 minutes the spell reaches a checkpoint, increasing the spells' effect and cost by 25%.
- Maxes out at 1 hour as before.
- HoT effect.
- Enemy spell casts deal damage to their caster equal to mana cost of that spell, with addional damage from the paladin's spell dmg stat.
Some feel its lacking, just not powerful enough in maintaining the Paladin's combat system. Here are ways to improve it.
- Buffed to 50-100% resistance, for all Blessings and Seals.
- In addition to current effects, a 10%/20% chance that if buffs are dispelled then the Paladin will recieve the mana cost of that spell back, and that spell will come off cooldown. Except maybe imp. LoH, which would otherwise be a great cause of giggling.
A blessing with very limited use, strange also that it exists in the same tree alongside the other talented blessing.
- Replace Blessing of Sanctuary with a self-only buff titled 'Sanctuary', which has the same effects.
- Remove BoSanc and give its attributes to Holy shield.
Holy Shield has a cooldown exactly equal to the spell's duration. With no way to lengthen its duration or reduce its cooldown, even moderate lag can result in a "race" condition where a Paladin can be crushed (and subsequently killed) before Holy Shield can be reactivated.
- One to two seconds leeway is all thats needed to bring this talent up to scratch.
- JoC to scale with AP
- SoC costs: 6% Base Mana (~177 mana at level 70)
- Unleashing this Seal's energy will judge an enemy, instantly causing [AP*0.2] Holy damage, [AP*0.4] if the target is stunned or incapacitated.
- Option 1: Still benefits from Spell dmg- no-ones going to have AP and spell dmg anyway.
- Option 2: No-longer benefits from Spell dmg- its a Ret ability and should act like one.
Doesn't seem powerful enough to justify being a 31 point talent.
- Made baseline.
- If broken prematurely in any way other than damage taken, a debuff is applied- "Guilt of the Unrepentant":
- Increases all damage taken by 100%.
- Duration six seconds.
Not very powerful especially in PvP where its utility function is negilable, compared as it often is to Mortal Strike or other 31/41pnt talents. Of concern to many is its distance from the Seal system, and avoidance of Holy dmg, resulting in somewhat low dmg at times and eliminating synergy with Sanctity Aura. Solutions abound, addressing a diverse range of issues, not surprising for what is the signature move of the Retribution paladin.
- Damage changes
- Becomes holy damage
- Is considered holy damage for the purposes of dmg bonus, but remains physical.
- Procs seals.
- Applies a Buff
- Increased benefit from blessings/Holy buffs/All buffs for the Paladin's group on Crit.
- Applies a Debuff
- additional holy damage on all attacks.
- Healing reduction, similar to Mortal Strike.
- When heals are recieved by the target, the paladin recieves some healing aswell.
- When heals are recieved/cast by the target then targets within melee distance have their physical damage increased proportionately of the heal. (Please see Spiritual_Augmentation for similar mechanic.)
- Reduces damage done.
- Applies all Judgements.
- Applies JotC(without overwriting other Judgements).
- Increase duration of all debuffs("Neverending Crusade").
- Guarenteed application of Vindication.
- Decreases Casting / Melee / Movement Speed.
- Additional effects:
- Whenever your judgments are removed or the duration expires the target is incapacitated for 2 seconds.
- Intellect to affect mitigation stats: either Block, Parry, or Dodge rating, or is discounted in cost from gear, so it doesnt hurt paladin tank itemisation.
- Addition as a talent/stat on existing talent in the high-end of the Prot tree.
Ideas that add to the class, whilst not falling under a specific heading, playstyle or role.
Seals of Light and Wisdom are changed- They no longer proc passive benefits, instead they charge up the new ability that allows you to cast its effects on friendly targets.
- Makes them interactive.
- Alllows modest instant healing for inceased mobility.
- Base ability.
- Shares cooldown/mana cost with Judgement.
- Can be cast on any friendly target within Aura range.
- If the parent seal is dispelled, the benefits remain for the paladin to execute Recompence.
- SoL and SoW could be used to charge the same Recompence
- Charge on recompence will disipate after time- the charge attributed to it would exist for 30 seconds.
- Additional high level holy talent-
- RoL recieves an initial boost from the amount of +healing you have, allowing it to be a modest instant heal, not dependant on melee.
If SoL/W becomes damage based-
- A talent is added to the base of the Holy tree- the seals recieve a +healing and +spell dmg coefficient for light and wisdom respectively.
- Every point earned from dealing damage will allow for an additional point(s) to be earned from these coefficients, up to the maximum allowed by +heal/dmg gear.
- Added to an existing talent, high in the Prot tree-
- Effects increase when cast on others, if they have lower armor.
Clothed in Light
The paladin's armor becomes infused with light, providing a protection against only magic.
- Address a need for defence vs casters.
- Support in melee component.
- Base or protection spell. Perhaps an additional short-term blessing but presumably a stand alone spell.
- Thirty second duration, two min cooldown.
- The paladin recieves a buff of the same name that creates an absorption shield on the paladin equivelent to the paladin's armour. The paladin's armor is then reduced to zero, and he loses the ability to block.
- Magic damage dealt to the paladin is absorbed.
- In addition, Holy damage will still reach the target, being mitigated as though both armour and attack were physical(Essentially dealing additional damage, spread over the shield and the paladin himself). As the armor is reduced by magic sources, level of mitigation would correspondingly decrease.
- Magic attacks dealt to the paladin are subject to shield block.
- A five yard aura is generated by the paladin. Those affected by the aura would absorb/mitigate as stated, sapping the paladin's shield. They cannot shield block spells.
- This buff vies for last place to be dispelled- when it is to be dispelled, spells/abilities/effects that normally would dispel it instead deal damage to it determined by their mana/energy/rage cost, with the exception of Mass Dispel, which works as normal.
- Changes to armor class whilst spell is active:
- Increases: All increases will not figure in calculation. If due to a gear change, that slot's previous armor contribution will be subtracted from the buff.
- Decreases: Decreases from gear will subtract from the buff, and that slot will from then on be ignored. Decreases from the ending of positive armour spells will be ignored. Effects that would normally decrease armor act as normal,not influencing the spell( ie. sunder armor will simply render a negative armor class for the duration of the spell.)
Conclusion Didn't seem so complicated when I started writing that. Its a fidly spell (I probably missed something as is) but if it was implemented in a simpler form that wouldn't be much of an issue. Addresses a glaring imbalance, while incorparating an encouragement for meleeing up alongside tanks in PvE, and playing a new support role in warlock tanking (maybe).
Added rage bar
An idea that has been kicking around in the heads of some paladins for a while, no doubt primarily those of the Retribution path. Seems a simple way for a hybrid of the Warrior and Priest classes to exist:use the resouces of both.
Bringing rage into the context of a Paladin, its a resource but also something to be controlled, as the Paladin must not drown in their rage as the warrior does but must instead remain controlled and focused enough to use his holy power.
What this allows in practice is for a few problems to be addressed: ret dps longevity(traded for some burst), moves can now be effectively linked to being in melee, new dynamic in dual bar system and rage as a limitation, easy link between healing/dps trade and possible incorporation of spirit as a more useful stat.
Charge of the Light Brigade
New ability with highly amusing filler name, that addresses issues that have been addressed elsewhere already, albeit kinda poorly. By the old ones that is.
Version 1: Implementation
- The Paladin charges the target, applying the judgement of whatever seal is currently active.
- The judgement effect:
- places Judgement on cooldown.
- does not require Judgement to be off cooldown to use.
- Usual deadzone range condition.
- Can only be used outside of combat.
- Must be behind the target.
Conclusion Can you apply the rogue clause from distance? Probably, but then, who knows, who cares?
Version 2: Implementation
- Replaces and adopts the name/mana cost/cast time/damage of [Hammer of Wrath].
- Charges the target.
- Deadzone applies.
- Target must be at or below 20%
- Conditions of use need only be met when cast is begun, not within cast time.
Conclusion The initial purpose of HoW was to finish off runners. A 'charge if they run' ability makes alot of sense for a melee class. 1.5 seconds cast-time on a charge makes as much sense as it does on an execute- which is 'enough'.
New melee attack that is the base for a new system revovlving around greater healing from melee.
- available at 40th level
- On Next Attack
- Mana Cost: 2% total mana.
- 100% Weapon Damage
- 6 second cooldown
- Each Zealous Strike that lands generates the status buff Zeal on the paladin that increases the power of some of the paladin's abilities.
Zeal is a stackable buff on the paladin, derived from Zealous strike.
- Stacks 3 times
- Lasts for 30 seconds from the last successful hit of Zealous Strike.
- Zeal increases the power of affected spells by 5%/10%/15%.
- Zeal also increases resistance to interrupts and silence effects (such as Kick, Shield Bash, etc.) by 10%/20%/30%, but provides no additional protection from incapacitating affects (like fears and stuns).
- Zeal increases the paladin's chance to hit with special strikes (Zealous Strike, Valiant Blow, and Crusader Strike) by 1%/2%/3%. (NOTE: This may be too much for Zeal, but I would like for the developers to consider it).
- Abilities affected by Zeal:
- Holy light
- Flash of Light
- Abilities dependant on Zeal:
- Valiant Blow
- available at 40th level
- On Next Attack
- Mana Cost: 2% total mana.
- 100% Weapon Damage
- 15 second cooldown
- Heals all players who have Blessing of Light cast on them by weapon damage (increased by Zeal) and causes an additional amount of Holy damage to undead and demons equal to the weapon damage (increased by Zeal). Requires at least one charge of Zeal. Consumes all charges of Zeal.
- Alternatively: Healing effect only applies to people in the paladin's party (not the raid).
Instant heal with a long cooldown, perfect for the healer that melees.
- In PvE, this would allow Paladins of Ret and Prot specs to add their limited healing to the raid, while still fufilling their chosen role.
- In PvP allows a fluid movement between melee/healing balancing against damage classes that can cause damage whilst moving, and melee classes that already have more combat control.
- Powerful as a means of solo scenario escape, which is not intended as this ability is to aid in combat.
- Uninterruptible, a huge change from the current situation.
- Low tier Holy talent or base spell.
- Same potency and cost as Holy Light.
- Puts all healing spells on a 10 second cooldown(excluding Holy shock).
- 15 yard range.
- To provide distinction, a similar but more brilliant white hand glow, which fades over the duration of the cooldown.
- Linked to the Zeal system where it requires or consumes a Zeal charge, or to a Rage system. This limits its use out of melee range.
Conclusion: This ability really meshes with the Holy Warrior archetype, and the desired "suddeness" of early WoW paladin concepts.
New talent available only to Prot paladins. A buff is placed on Paladin and friendly target, short duration. Any extra damage that would otherwise kill the paladin/target reduces their health to 1 and is redirected to the other in the pair, essentially causing them to share health pools.
- Gives paladin tanks an emergency button.
- Allows Prot paladins to 'save' someone in trouble, literally giving some or all of his life to protect the target.
- Helps address stamina imbalance in some situations.
- A five/ten second dual buff as stated, with a medium to long cooldown (5-15mins).
- If both players are on 1 health each and the 'owner' of the spell takes 1 dmg, that paladin dies, severing the connection. If the target instead takes that 1 or more dmg, the paladin dies before his target does.
- Subject to 'group only' rules, similar to Blessing of Protection.
- Bypasses immunity mechanics, essentially for variety and balance.
- Only one such buff can be on a player at any one time.
Conclusion Seems an elegant solution/positive step in tanking and Utility. Fits really nicely with the idea of magic use as protection, control of combat through defence and a paladin's tendency to get himself killed helping others.
Fist of the Heavens
Conceived as a replacment for repentance, the ability meshes with the judgement system for a burst-like affect.
- Increased utility of judgements, notably for PvP and soloing.
- One point deep in the retribution tree, presumably as the 31st point talent.
- 10% of Base Mana (~295 at 70) 1 min cooldown
- Calls down the power of the Light on a Judged target, granting an effect.
- Judgement of Wisdom - Grants [JudgementEffect*10] mana to your party members.
- Judgement of Light - Instantly heals party members for [JudgementEffect*10].
- Judgement of the Crusader - Increases your party's melee, ranged, and spell casting speed by 10% for 10 sec.
- Judgement of Justice - Immobilizes the enemy for 6 sec.
To clarify, this will only ever interact with the Paladin's induvidual judgement. The thing to remember is this ability requires a Judgement to be on the mob and has a 1 minute cooldown. You're not getting 740 mana, 950 healing, 10% haste increase, and an immobilize each minute - you have to choose.
The Paladin recieves a short damage bonus everytime an opponent's healing spell occurs near the Paladin.
- Addresses the paladin's weakness vs healers, (having few interrupts)
- Damage relation of Spiritual Attunement
- 10% of healing cast by/on enemies in a 15yard(from spells or magic effects) is added to the Paladin's attack. For instance, if a heal occurs for 4000 health, then the paladin will recieve a bonus of 400 dmg over the 10 second duration- in other words his physical attack will increase by 40dps.
- 10 second duration
- Single heals can only increase the paladin's dps by a maximum of 10%.
- The effect caps at a 50% increase of dps.
- Additional heals will stack(up to the above limit) and refresh the effect.
- Passive healing effects, such as Second Wind will activate the effect but not refresh it.
- only the 1st tick of HoTs will activate the effect, for the value of the Entire HoT's duration.
- If in range of both healer and healed, affect is applied only once.
- Base passive effect of all Paladins/base buff for all Paladins/low level Ret talent.
Being mostly physical based Ret will benefit more certainly than its counterparts, but by the same token Holy has the least to fear from it of any healer. Being designed with more of a PvP mindset, its PvE application may need further tweaking.
Castable single target debuff, all hits on target increases att/casting/movement speed and dmg done dramatically, without immediate threat concerns.
- Unique ability through threat postphonement.
- Powerful dps centered, group scaleable ability.
- Pve-last moments of boss fights, untankable targets and caster targets.
- PvP-indirect dmg, allows the paladin to maintain melee distance.
- 15-20 second duration
- approx 10% increase to dmg and speed, for around 20% overall increase in dmg.
- Postphones threat generation for the duration of the spell.
- 10-30 minute cooldown
Conclusion: A sort of interesting and unique buff, specialised but valuable.
An Aura that lends the unique attributes of the holy school against mitigating factors to the attacks of the affected. Ret or base ability.
- A 2nd offensive aura for some diversity.
- Allows synergy between Ret pallies.
- Additional useulness for pally tank threat generation.
- Reminiscent of D2 Paladins' enemy resistence lowering auras.
- Unique mechanic.
- A portion (10-25%) of physical Dmg generated by affected players that would otherwise be mitigated is not, but is instead added as a seperate componenet and considered holy dmg.
- Magical dmg, for the purposes of resistance/immunity/vulnerability/absorbtion is considered to be of the holy school.
Favour of the crusader
Crit-based proc on use for Crusader Strike, that increases the effect of Holy buffs on the paladin's group.
- makes the talent more useful in soloing, pvp and groups.
- more fittingly impressive for a 41 point talent.
- useful in any group makeup, due to the induvidual crafted nature of blessings.
- a visible, character-advancement dependant ability.
- Additional to refreshing judgements.
- On CS crit, a 6sec buff is applied to the Paladin and group, "Favour of the Crusader".
- Doubles the effect of Holy Buffs. In regards to Vengeance, only doubles the effect of one stacked point, effectively adding a fourth charge.
- Does not effect HoTs.
Conclusion Not something that's going to be up all the time (assuming only one paladin) but it'll be noticed when its there.