Hello Holy Paladins! Well… Patch 5.4 is now live and the amount of content that is available can be quite overwhelming. So we’ve put together a post that focuses on changes for just Holy Paladins who love to heal! Including major overhauls to our Tier 3 level 45 talents as the Blizzard devs try to normalize these three spells, we go over what the changes mean for the dungeoning, raiding Holy Paladin.
Read this post to get best aquainted with Holy Paladin game play changes and put yourself in the bst position to take down that crazed Orc Garrosh!
Sanctity of Battle now also affects the cooldown of Holy Shock.
Sanctity of Battle is a passive ability that allows melee haste effects or the Haste stat to lower cooldowns. This change means that our haste stat will also reduce the cooldown of Holy Shock. We don’t think this change justifies stacking for more haste though, as our mana probably doens’t allow for it.
Seal of Insight no longer has a chance to restore mana on attacks.
The mana restore on attack function from Seal of Insight(which is the Seal we use as Holy Paladins) has been removed. This is ok because we still gain the haste and healing bonus, and how many of us really would run in to whack things just for a ‘chance’ to gain 4% of mana back?
Turn Evil now has a 15-second cooldown.
A cooldown added to a rarely used crowd control spell in Turn Evil. We believe this is to make sure this isn’t too overpowered when players have opted for the new tier talent: Evil is a Point of View, which we will discuss later.
Mastery: Illuminated Healing no longer activates from periodic healing effects.
The Blizzard devs wanted to reduce our reliance on the tier 3 talent Eternal Flame, so they have made it so that no periodic healing effects or HoTs no longer actives our Mastery. Unfortunately this means less shields which in effect is a pretty strong nerf to our overall healing ability. We haven’t got too many movement-friendly spells and removing the mastery-shield effect from one of our only movement-friendly spells really reduces our ability to heal on the run.
We understand the change. Paladins aren’t meant to be a HoT healers (that’s for the Druids), so we get why they’d wanted to “even out” the tier 3 talents. But at the same time it’s reduced our ability to heal on the move.
You will see later in these notes that Blizzard also buffs the Eternal Flame talent itself, so we think ultimately they don’t want the Paladin’s Mastery to look as overpowered as it does when looking as HPS from other healer’s perspectives.
Divine Plea no longer reduces the amount of healing done, and now restores mana based on the Paladin’s Spirit.
No longer reduces the amount of healing done?! Sweet! It also restores mana based on our Spirit stat, which is good as it lines up with other mana returning spells like Innervate for Druids. Divine Plea now restores 135% of the Paladin’s Spirit as mana every 3 seconds for 9 seconds.
The total amount of mana restored will always be at least 12% of the Paladin’s total mana.
I’m glad that we get a guaranteed minimum 12% return in mana.
Guardian of the Ancient Kings (Holy) now has a cooldown of 3 minutes (down from 5 minutes), and summons a guardian that heals the ally that the Paladin healed for 100% (up from 10%) of the amount healed, but no longer heals nearby friendly targets.
We think this could be a positive change, as it’s going to give us a little more control over the way our Guardian heals, rather than relying on smart heals to heal injured targets. It essentially means that our Guardian will heal what we heal. If we heal one target with Holy Shock, or Guardian will do the same. If we heal many with Holy Radiance, our Guardian will do the same. The cooldown time has been reduced, however the duration has been cut in half, probably because it’s stronger than it was previously. It still provides you with 10% haste in addition.
Holy Insight now increases the effectiveness of Eternal Flame, Light of Dawn, and Word of Glory by 50%. Effectiveness of other heals are still increased by 25%.
Well, the Blizzard devs don’t want us to use Eternal Flame because we’re not HoT healers, so they take the shielding possibility away from us, but then just buff Eternal Flame itself through Holy Insight anyway? This seems really strange to us. Nevertheless, we’ll take it along with the increased healing to Light of Dawn and Word of Glory as well. A welcome buff.
Holy Shock‘s mana cost has been reduced by 50%.
One of our most-used spells get a mana reduction by 50%, a welcome change.
Judgment for Holy Paladins now costs 12% of base mana to cast (up from 5% of base mana).
An increase to the mana cost of our Judgement spell for us Holy Paladins. A strange change to make to say the least. With a nerf to the way our Eternal Flame works with our Mastery, to make the talents in the same tier more competitive, but Selfless Healer in that same tier relies on Judgements and now they cost more? An interesting change.
We believe that with the nerf to Eternal Flame, Holy Paladins would have flocked to Selfless Healer, so they nerfed that aswell to basically even out the tier 3 talents and make them all evenly sub-par.
- New Talent: Evil is a Point of View. Evil is a Point of View allows the Paladin to use Turn Evil on players and beasts.
So the Burden of Guilt talent on live realms currently reduces the movement speed of targets by 50%. This will be removed and no longer available. Instead we’ll have the ability to turn our spell Turn Evil into a crowd controlling ability on players and beasts. This will be a beast in PvP there’s no doubt! Remember the change to the spell Turn Evil will also have a 15 second cool down.
Eternal Flame‘s periodic heal-over-time effect now heals for 40% more.
And once again, even though the devs said they’re intent isn’t for Holy Paladin’s to all take this talent to become HoT healers and having already nerfed it against our Mastery, they once again buff it. More testing is required, but the numbers we won’t see in our Mastery because of the lack of periodic healing may just appear as straight healing from Eternal Flame!
Execution Sentence will now immediately damage the target for 5 times the amount of damage that had been dealt by Execution Sentence’s most recent periodic effect when dispelled.
- Stay of Execution will now immediately heal the target for 5 times the amount of healing that had been dealt by Stay of Execution’s most recent periodic effect when dispelled.
The tier 6 talent Exection Sentence and it’s use-on-friendly healing portion: Stay of Execution now has a damage/heal when dispelled mechanic. This is mostly for PvP situations, but basically it works like this(from a healers perspective): If the most recent tick of Stay of Execution heals for 5k and the buff is removed from the target, they will be immediately healed for 25k (5 x 5k).
Like we said, this is mostly concern for PvPers. For those playing against a Paladin who uses the damaging Execution Sentence, you’ll want to remove it ASAP as the damaging ticks ramp up the longer it lasts, and you’d rather 5 x a small amount of damage rather than 5 times a large amount of damage.
Hand of Purity now reduces damage taken from harmful periodic effects by 80% (up from 70%) and reduces damage taken from harmful periodic effects that cannot be prevented by immunities by 40% (up from 0%).
A buff to one of our tier 4 talents Hand of Purity, with 10% additional damage reduction. It also reduces periodic effects that can’t be prevented by immunities like Divine Shield. A good change, but “cannot be prevented by immunities” does not make any sense. If damange cannot be prevented by immunities, then they aren’t in fact immunities, are they? That’s another story anyway. This change is a buff and that’s all we need to know for now.
- Holy: Sacred Shield now applies its damage absorption shield immediately, can be active on more than one target at a time, but the talent now costs mana and has 3 charges with a 10-second recharge.
A positive change to another talent in that pesky tier 3. Sacred Shield has been buffed probably to coincide with the Eternal Flame change and the change to Judgements(affecting Selfless Healer) and the changes to Selfless Healer that you will see below. It’s basically all about evening out all the Tier 3 talents as best they can.
This change allows us to apply Sacred Shield to up to 3 targets, which is would be great for tank/off-tank/yourself for example. It does however now cost mana, so you’re going to want to be careful spamming it all the time.
- Holy: Sanctified Wrath now also increases the critical strike chance of Holy Shock by 20%.
Sancitfied Wrath, a level 75 tier 5 talent, has received a buff. If you have this talent in Patch 5.4, your Avenging Wrath will last 50% longer, your Holy Shock will have half the cooldown and it will have an additional 20% chance to crit. Nothing but a buff!
Selfless Healer in addition to its current effects, now also causes Judgment to generate a charge of Holy Power for Holy Paladins. Stacks of Selfless Healer now reduce the cast time, mana cost, and improve the effectiveness of Divine Light, Flash of Light, and Holy Radiance.
First, if we choose this talent, any Judgements we cast on enemies will generate a charge of Holy Power. Good. The stacks of Selfless Healer, which reduced cast time and mana cost of Flash of Light, now also reduces cast time and mana cost of Divine Light and Holy Radiance as well. Excellent! The stacks also increase the amount these spells heal by 20% per stack! Fantastic! This has definitely brought it up to a competitive level to the other talents in the same tier, Eternal Flame and Sacred Shield, which have also received changes of their own.
Unbreakable Spirit has been simplified. It now reduces the cooldown on Divine Shield, Divine Protection, and Lay on Hands by 50%.
Pretty simple, straight forward change for this tier 4 level 60 talent. It’s no longer complicated and it’s a simple cooldown reduction to important ‘oh-crap!’ spells.
New Major Glyphs
Glyph of Divine Shield: Removing harmful effects with Divine Shield heals the Paladin for each effect removed. This heal cannot exceed a percentage of the Paladin’s maximum health.
Divine Shield protects you from damaging spells and debuffs by removing them. With this Glyph activated and using Divine Shield, any damaging spells or debuffs will be removed and you will also be healed by 10% of your maximum health for each damaging spell, up to a maximum of 50% of your maximum health. So a maximum of 5 damaging spells or debuffs. Could be really good for PvPers, not sure it will be very effective for PvE situations.
Glyph of Hand of Sacrifice: Hand of Sacrifice no longer transfers damage taken by the target to the Paladin.
Usually when we use our Hand of Sacrifice spell on a target, 30% of damage that would usually be taken by the target is transferred to us instead. With this Glyph activated, damage will not be suffered by either the target or us the Paladin. This could be a handy tank-protecting cooldown glyph.
Glyph of Denounce now causes Holy Shock to reduce the cast time of the next Denounce by 0.5 seconds, and the effect can stack up to 3 times.
Instead of a 50% chance in reduction to the cast time of Denounce as it is on live, using Holy Shock with this Glyph will guarantee a reduction in Denounce cast time by 0.5 seconds per stack. With a maximum of 3 stacks or 1.5 second reduction, Denounce can become an instant cast spell. We don’t see this Glyph becoming a staple for PvE situations, but it’s worth mentioning for offensive PvP Paladins.
Glyph of Divine Plea now reduces the amount of mana restored and cooldown of Divine Plea by 50%.
On live realms currently, Glyph of Divine Plea effectively turns Divine Plea into a channelling spell as it causes it to have 5 second cast time. This glyph has been changed to reducing the mana return by half, but also reducing the cooldown by half. With this Glyph, Divine Plea will return the same amount of mana as without, but it gives you a little more control as to when you might like to use it.
Glyph of Rebuke has been replaced with Glyph of Devotion Aura.
Glyph of Rebuke on live realms would increase the cooldown of Rebuke by 5 seconds but also increase the lockout of Rebuke by 2 seconds. This has been removed and in it’s place a New Glyph: Glyph of Devotion Aura.
Glyph of Devotion Aura causes Devotion Aura to no longer affect party or raid members, but the cooldown is reduced.
Devotion Aura, without the Glyph, grants immunity to silencing and interrupt for ALL party and raid members for 6 seconds and also reduces damage by 20%. This glyph turns Devotion Aura into a more individual spell and less of a raid-wide cooldown. It means that the immunity to silences, interrupts and the damage reduction will only effect you, but the cooldown is reduced by 60 seconds, allowing the individual version to be used every 2 minutes instead of 3. This could be a situational Glyph in PvE, but would be more useful in PvP situations.
Glyph of the Battle Healer has been redesigned. The glyph now causes Seal of Insight to no longer heal the Paladin. Instead, a nearby raid or party member will receive healing for 30% of the amount the Paladin would have received from Seal of Insight.
When you strike an enemy with Seal of Insight activated (which you will as a Holy Paladin), the attacks have a chance to heal you. With this Glyph activated using one of your Glyph slots, it will heal a nearby friendly target instead, not yourself. As a healer, we’re not known for attacking enemies and our glyph slots are better spent on other glyphs.
Glyph of Turn Evil has been replaced with Glyph of Burden of Guilt.
- Glyph of Burden of Guilt causes Judgment to reduce the target’s movement speed by 50% for 2 seconds.
A glyph removed and a glyph added. Glyph of Burden of Guilt adds a slowing effect to your judgements. This is merely a situational PvP Glyph.
New Minor Glyphs
These are merely cosmetic changes, do with them what you please.
Glyph of the Exorcist: Exorcism will now appear to remove the evil from its target.
A neat little glyph that adds a little yellow visual effect coming out of your target for when you cast Exorcism on them.
Glyph of Pillar of Light: Critical heals on other players display a small pillar of light at their location briefly.
Another neat little cosmetic glyphs that puts a light effect from your crit heal target’s feet to above their head.
Well that’s about it for Holy Paladins for now. There may be additional hotfixes and small changes here and there.
How are you finding Patch 5.4 so far? Have you tried Proving Grounds? How about Flexible Raids? A lot of new features have come with Patch 5.4, tell us your favourite in the comments below!