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The Way of the Shield: Protection in Cataclysm


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#21 Lord Loom

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 01:06 PM

I view not having a stun as far less critical to a tank's job as not having a "good" interrupt (ie. not on the GCD with an overly long CD), simply by virtue of having far less mobs who need to be stunned to ensure success than those who need to be interrupted to reposition them or to keep a big spell of total helldeath from going off. Obviously Blizzard disagrees, the fact that they moved the ret interrupt out of reach for prot (and holy) pretty much tells us they considered it and also determined prot paladins having no reliable interrupt to be on the acceptable side of "class and encounter diversity".
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#22 Ratek

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 01:19 PM

Anyone else noticed that E4E doesn't mention any damagecap?
Boss hits Paladin for 50000
Paladin gains Eye for an Eye
Paladin's Eye for an Eye hits Boss for 15000

Wonder if it is going to be worth the 2 points if they don't cap it.

#23 Handyhoof

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 01:42 PM

Mex, I came up with the same cookie cutter build, but my last three points certainly went into Divinity. The tank health/healing goal in Cataclysm is to be not topped off easily. If it plays out like the devs have pitched, this would be a true nearly 6% increased effective healing. The main argument against it in current play is spam overhealing, but that should no longer be a concern if the design works out.

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 02:38 PM

You realize reckoning will definitely be worth it now. PoJ was only worth it when it reduced disarm--the speed increase will just have to be stam/minor speed to boots enchant. 0/35/5 build seems like the more logical choice, the critical strike on CS is a minor increase of threat.
#
# Reckoning now gives you a 10/20/30% chance after blocking an attack for your next 4 weapon swings within 8 sec to generate an additional attack.

#25 holymoly

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 02:50 PM

The AD change is a good way in the right direction, considering raiding as a prot paladin. The 35% HP threshold is something you do not want to surpass in a raid at any given time. So depending on your healers, you'll not receive much of the AD talent as for damage reduction. Most likely AD is there to give you a second life after something goes seriously wrong.

And even if you drop below the 35% its at maximum 1 blow that gets mitigrated until you are back at full HP again, so from a durational standpoint the flat damage reduction is very small throughout an entire raid.

To make this a activateable talent is a good thing. You will have the effect of the dmg reduction certainly longer on you, than with passive AD now.

The only problem however is the 35% threshold to trigger it. I already hear the frustration that ppl will end up not beeing able to "catch" it due to global cooldown while in their normal tanking rotation. And going under 35% on purpose aint an option.

I'd rather like to see a mechanic that AD is always triggerable, and depending on how much HP you had when you triggered it, gives you a certain amount of flat damage reduction. So for instance 35% and lower = 20% reduction, while up to at full HP only 5% reduction.

You still have a risk of triggering it at a wrong time... but at least, you could trigger it after all and it will not be such a pain the ass, when a boss shoots you at 36%

#26 Lanlaorn

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 04:41 PM

The new holy shield definitely seems powerful, but I'm worried that its effects might be too pronounced for its uptime. With a 40 second duration (with 3 HP) and 1 minute cooldown, we'll be pressing it pretty much every time it lights up. If the mastery bonus ends up staying as block value, then we could end up seeing it average out to a 10% reduction easily, and quite possibly see it go higher. The problem is that the short cooldown and relatively low power level (compared to DP / AD) mean that you won't often be saving it, but that it's still potent enough to cause a noticeably discrepancy in damage taken depending on whether it's on or off. 2/3rds uptime is good when we're talking in averages, but it represents a significant amount of downtime from a healer's perspective. I think that they could definitely stand to curtail the uptime a bit.


It's more than 10% DR actually. Operating under the following assumptions:
- 40% Avoidance (current avoidance rates without Defense's dodge/parry/miss)
- 20% base block chance (blue post was vague but implied a "fair" amount of base block)
- Old Mastery bonus of +17% block DR at 51 in prot translates over somehow (likely to be the function of the "mastery skill" you learn at 75)

So 40% of the time you are not hit, and block for 47% 20% of the time i.e. 1/3 of all hits are blocked and so an average 15.7% DR from blocking. With Holy Shield however there is a 50% chance to block i.e. 5/6 of all hits are blocked. This means an average of 39.2% DR when Holy Shield is up, which is 2/3 of the time (the usual 15.7% DR the other 1/3 of the time) for an average of 31.36% physical DR if Holy Shield is used on CD with 3 Holy Power Combo Points.

In summary blocking in Cata appears to be quite powerful and Holy Shield more than doubles that while it's active - and with such a high uptime brings the overall average block value up by a large amount as well.

With regards to your actual concern about healing and taking "spiky" damage, I don't really think it'll be an issue with the new large health pools and new healing model. Plus, if the boss doesn't require saving your CDs for some specific ability or phase then you could use other abilities in the Holy Shield downtime. Something like Holy Shield, Divine Protection, Holy Shield, Guardian of the Ancient Kings, Holy Shield, Divine Protection, Holy Shield. That's 3 minutes 40 seconds before a true full gap in 'coverage' (although there are small gaps throughout since DP is only 12 seconds out of the 20, but that should be more than enough).

Although the tank numbers are fun to think about there's still far too much missing for us to really hypothesize anything anyway, all the various self healing mechanics and talents are going to become vastly more powerful and depend on our knowledge of player HP and average boss damage to make valid comparisons. Hell we even need to know AP values to account for the Bear "paw block".

#27 [ Duracell-]

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 08:14 PM

Just posted by GC: http://www.worldofra...pally-tree.html

Ardent Defender - Activate to reduce damage taken by 20% for 10 sec. While active, attacks which would otherwise kill you cause you to be healed for 15% of your maximum health. 3 minute cooldown. Off the GCD.

Subject to further balance tweaking of course.


Much better than the current beta build, and in my opinion, better than live. Mini bubble wall off the GCD, plus ALL attacks in 10s that would kill you instead heal you for 15% of your maximum HP. Basically gives your healers 10s of extra breathing room to get you back up without worrying about being gibbed.

As for our rotation changing, I'm glad to see 969 go away. The rotation is quite boring, and I find my warrior much more fun to tank with because of the procs I need to watch for if I want maximum DPS and threat. The changes in the pally prot tree looks like we'll be less "faceroll", watching for Grand Crusader procs and all.

Our trees still looks like it has some tweaking incoming, as GC stated that our infinite Divine Plea will be going away and replaced by a JotW effect for speccing Prot (Prot Paladins in Beta Build 12539 - World of Raids). Guarded by the Light looks weird anyways...reducing Divine Plea to no CD and no mana cost?

#28 Edalia

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Posted 21 July 2010 - 08:26 PM

You realize reckoning will definitely be worth it now. PoJ was only worth it when it reduced disarm--the speed increase will just have to be stam/minor speed to boots enchant.


The extra speed you get from PoJ over a boot enchant is absolutely the reason to take it. You spec 2 points on Live into the Disarm reduction for...the Warrior in Faction Champions?

#29 Mex

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 03:42 AM

Mex, I came up with the same cookie cutter build, but my last three points certainly went into Divinity. The tank health/healing goal in Cataclysm is to be not topped off easily. If it plays out like the devs have pitched, this would be a true nearly 6% increased effective healing. The main argument against it in current play is spam overhealing, but that should no longer be a concern if the design works out.


Yeah, Divinity is certainly an outlier. I'd hesitate to call it necessary at this earlier stage, but it's definitely in its own category away from every other talent which amounts to a threat / DPS increase. I would imagine that it would feature fairly heavily in progression builds.

You realize reckoning will definitely be worth it now. PoJ was only worth it when it reduced disarm--the speed increase will just have to be stam/minor speed to boots enchant. 0/35/5 build seems like the more logical choice, the critical strike on CS is a minor increase of threat.
#
# Reckoning now gives you a 10/20/30% chance after blocking an attack for your next 4 weapon swings within 8 sec to generate an additional attack.


I'm sorry, I don't understand why reckoning is "definitely worth it". It's a threat increase, or minor survivability increase if for some reason you're using Seal of the Pure. PoJ still provides 15% movespeed, and is still a critical tanking talent because of that. Discussion can be found earlier in the thread in the 3.3 thread if you're interested.

It's more than 10% DR actually. Operating under the following assumptions

...

With regards to your actual concern about healing and taking "spiky" damage, I don't really think it'll be an issue with the new large health pools and new healing model.


Well, I tried to avoid making too many assumptions. Certainly numbers like 40% avoidance, right at the start of the expac, would strike me as being ridiculously high. I'm also not sure what sorts of numbers we'll see from Mastery regarding block value. I wouldn't be surprised to see well-rounded gear only increase the amount blocked from 30% to 35% or so. More extreme numbers simply exacerbate the problem, though.

Regarding the second part of your post that I quoted, I honestly think that people are probably reading too much into promises of a new healing model. Incoming damage will still be spikey, overhealing will still occur and still be necessary, and while these things might be eased off somewhat, we're still going to be copping a lot of healing spam very quickly during hard fights. Intense periods typically tend to be quite short, and if that's the case then we're likely to see holy shield end up being a psuedo-cooldown. In that case, balancing things so that Paladins aren't too powerful during the burst, and too spongey during the rest of the fight may be problematic. I think a 10 second + 3-4 seconds per HP holy shield seems more reasonable, but we'll have to wait and see how encounters shape up to know for sure.
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#30 Bonestorm

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 04:27 AM

I'm sorry, I don't understand why reckoning is "definitely worth it". It's a threat increase, or minor survivability increase if for some reason you're using Seal of the Pure. PoJ still provides 15% movespeed, and is still a critical tanking talent because of that. Discussion can be found earlier in the thread if you're interested.


You can't really say how critical 7% run speed will be as a tank without seeing the encounters. On live PoJ is a no brainer because there's nothing else good to spend the points on, but the competing talents in cataclysm are pretty good. If blizzard actually delivers on the limited healer mana environment, 2 points in divinity could very well be more practical.

#31 Mex

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 05:24 AM

You can't really say how critical 7% run speed will be as a tank without seeing the encounters.


No, but you can make an educated guess based on the core paradigms of encounter and instance design over the past six years. On live, PoJ is mandatory, and unless every boss in Cata is Patchwerk then that trend is likely to continue. Movespeed has been critical to tanking success since BWL, and it would take a really radical paradigm shift to change that.
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#32 Lanlaorn

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 06:35 AM

While movement speed is very nice let's drop the hyperbole, it's far from "mandatory" when one considers that the other 3 tank classes get by with Tuskarr's Vitality.

#33 Mex

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 07:47 AM

I'm sorry, you're going to have to explain that reasoning to me. The other tank classes get by without Ardent Defender, too, but we don't drop that. What other tanks do / do not have access to has nothing to do with maximising our own performance.
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#34 Lanlaorn

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 01:34 PM

The encounters are clearly not designed around the assumption of +15% runspeed given that most tank classes move at +8%. While other tanks do not have Argent Defender they do have various mechanics meant to (ideally) provide an equal amount of survivability.

Maximizing performance has to do with opportunity cost. Is that 7% extra run speed better than 2% crit from live Conviction? Absolutely, and so everyone takes it. Is it better than +6% damage from beta Conviction or 4% healing recieved from Divinity (assuming stated Blizzard healing design goals become a reality)? Maybe not.

We'll see how threat, survivability and the movement requirements of fights work out. Kiting mechanics would obviously place a greater value on PoJ than just moving out of voidzones, etc.

#35 malthrin

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 02:10 PM

Here's some new info on Holy Shield. Also adding to the OP:
MMO-Champion BlueTracker | Thoughts on the current Prot Pally tree

As to Holy Shield, it is going through rapid iteration. Our current implementation has it providing 5% block per stack of Holy Power, up to a max of 15%. So you can use Holy Power for threat, healing or mitigation depending on current circumstances. You should be able to keep the 15% block up all the time with a very small amount of effort.

Warriors get 15% block baseline, so this means the paladin has to work harder for it. Seeing as how the paladin doesn't have to maintain Demo Shout or Thunderclap's debuff, this doesn't seem too great a burden.


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#36 [ Duracell-]

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Posted 22 July 2010 - 05:17 PM

Here's some new info on Holy Shield. Also adding to the OP:
MMO-Champion BlueTracker | Thoughts on the current Prot Pally tree


In the same post:

Righteous Fury now affects all threat.


About time, especially with Crusader Strike becoming baseline.

EDIT:

More tidbits

30s Vindication and Holy Wrath always applies Vindication? Yes please! Also, where did I miss the note that HW affects everything now?

#37 Jawbone

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 01:49 AM

The encounters are clearly not designed around the assumption of +15% runspeed given that most tank classes move at +8%. While other tanks do not have Argent Defender they do have various mechanics meant to (ideally) provide an equal amount of survivability.

Maximizing performance has to do with opportunity cost. Is that 7% extra run speed better than 2% crit from live Conviction? Absolutely, and so everyone takes it. Is it better than +6% damage from beta Conviction or 4% healing recieved from Divinity (assuming stated Blizzard healing design goals become a reality)? Maybe not.

We'll see how threat, survivability and the movement requirements of fights work out. Kiting mechanics would obviously place a greater value on PoJ than just moving out of voidzones, etc.


Tanks being able to engage a target faster will always weigh heavily in encounters (except Patchwork/BQL). Tanked targets mean they won't smack someone, and waste healer mana unnecessarily on raiders tanking. Mobility is something all tanks have to deal with. Warriors have Intercept/Intervene. Druids have feral charge. Death Knights pull things to them. And paladins spec PoJ and just move faster in general.

It is a core ability, and 4-6% extra healing is not, except in very rare (LK heroic) fights.
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#38 Zalinda

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 07:44 AM

It is a core ability, and 4-6% extra healing is not, except in very rare (LK heroic) fights.

If you go by the way it works in live. Yes. A lot of the (spammed preemptive) heals going on the tank are overheal, so adding 4-6% extra healing done just adds to overheal and is rarely effective healing done.

But the intent for tanking in Cata is that tanks will not be at 100% health for the majority of a fight. The plan is that tanks will be floating between 50-90% health for the majority of time. In this sort of scenario, the 4-6% becomes effective healing most of the time and that's a fairly significant ease on your healer's mana usage.

We'll have to see how things work in cata to be sure, but I wouldn't discard it just yet.

#39 Chicken

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 01:24 PM

Here's some new info on Holy Shield. Also adding to the OP:
MMO-Champion BlueTracker | Thoughts on the current Prot Pally tree

As to Holy Shield, it is going through rapid iteration. Our current implementation has it providing 5% block per stack of Holy Power, up to a max of 15%. So you can use Holy Power for threat, healing or mitigation depending on current circumstances. You should be able to keep the 15% block up all the time with a very small amount of effort.

Warriors get 15% block baseline, so this means the paladin has to work harder for it. Seeing as how the paladin doesn't have to maintain Demo Shout or Thunderclap's debuff, this doesn't seem too great a burden.

I have my doubts their current implementation is going to achieve their design goals.

While the fact that Inquisition and Holy Shield are mutually exclusive buffs does allow you to choose between extra mitigation or extra threat in theory, as long as Holy Shield is to be required to get comparable mitigation as other tanks, we can assume that on progression content the choice between mitigation and threat will effectively not exist. With the new mana models, progression content is made to be challenging through the potential of running your healers out of mana, which can be alleviated through mitigation as that'll reduce the amount of mana your healers need to spend. A well balanced fight, in other words, will just barely allow your healers to last through it when you have the same kind of mitigation as the kind of tank that the fight is balanced around does.

This means that the choice between threat and mitigation only starts to appear once you get to the point where you are well geared enough to trivialize the content, which seems contrary to their design goals. This problem really arises in any situation where you have to use a buff such as this to get comparable results to the average tank things are balanced around.

Their desired effect would be better achieved if the Prot Paladin baseline for both threat and mitigation were both a little bit below the average, with Inquisition and Holy Shield being balanced such that these buffs take you slightly above the average. As the two buffs are mutually exclusive, you then naturally end up with a playstyle where you use Inquisition when you need to increase your threat lead, and you use Holy Shield when you have a sufficient threat lead. Doing so also encourages trying to push a bit of extra mitigation or threat/damage as well.

Of course that also has it's own balance issues as on a fight that isn't perfectly tuned, we always end up with either better mitigation than others if the threat/damage isn't needed, or with better threat/damage than others if the mitigation isn't needed. It's possible that the effect they want to go for simply isn't feasible.

#40 Belicia

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Posted 23 July 2010 - 05:53 PM

Divine Protection now reduces all damage taken by 20% for 10 sec. (Down from 50% for 12 sec) Cooldown lowered from 5 min to 1 min. Spells restrictions (Divine Shield/Divine Protection/Hand of Protection/Avenging Wrath) removed.


MMO-Champion - Cataclysm Beta - Build 12604

I'm somewhat confused by this. It's a huge nerf to our biggest internal CD, and I hadn't heard any hint of this happening. Between Holy Shield and Ardent Defender, we already have two minor CDs (Ardent Defender obviously toes the line as a "minor CD," since it can save your life). Why do we need another small damage reduction ability? Do we now have to rely solely on external CDs such as Pain Suppression for large damage moments? If we have to rely on Ardent Defender proc'ing to work as our major CD, then we will never be able to proactively reduce burst damage by a large percentage ourselves. We'll only be able to retroactively "pop" back to life after the Ardent Defender proc saves us.

I'm neither comfortable about that, nor happy about it, since it makes our CDs basically a way to even out damage over time, rather than react to spike damage from boss abilities (Plasma Blast, Gormok's Impales, Soul Reaper, etc.). Warriors still have Shield Wall, and Death Knights still have Icebound Fortitude. Both of those last 12s, instead of 10s, and IBF has on a 2min CD. Death Knights also still have Will of the Necropolis.

Maybe they're adding a talent similar to Sanguine Fortitude (increases the base damage reduction of IBF by 15/30%, up to 50%), but that's not consistent with them lowering the CD on Divine Protection to 1 minute.

e: removed reference to Divine Guardian as a minor CD




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