December 22, 2010

To off-hand or not to off-hand

It has come to my attention that off-hand items are better than they were in WOTLK.  In WOTLK I used to list off-hand items on the list even though you couldn't enchant them.  Now, I do not list them even though you can apply +100 intellect to both off-hands and shields.  As Wowhead shows, the number of off-hands in Cataclysm is decent (for the ones without hit).  I'd like to justify myself in not listing off-hands before I make the jump and do it again.

Reasoning behind leaving out off-hands:
  1. Off-hands have no armor.  Armor used to negate only physical mob hits, which made it rather useless.  In Cataclysm, armor reduces all physical damage.  If an AOE ability or boss ability is physical damage you will take much less damage wearing a shield.  I can think of one example off the top of my head which is Quake on Ascendant Council.  Granted, you're not supposed to get hit by it.... but with a shield you can survive.
  2. Competition.  With shields you compete with other holy paladins and with off-hands you compete with (potentially): paladins, priests, druids, shamans, warlocks, mages.  The likelihood of the caster classes being pissed when you take the off-hand is relatively high.
  3. Adds.  On the off-chance your tank isn't Chuck Norris, a few adds may hit healers while being picked up.  Shield armor helps then.  It's probably not enough damage that your self healing can't cover, but it might save other healers the trouble of getting your health bar up.
  4. Pride. Yeah, it isn't a good gameplay reason.  So be it.
Are these reasons enough to not list off-hands on the BIS list?  Are there reasons I'm missing?  Let me know in comments.

December 17, 2010

Cataclysm Raid Healing Guide/Impressions: Chimaeron

Since I've done the majority of the raid bosses in Cataclysm as a holy paladin now, it seems only appropriate that I do a write up on something I found particularly impressive.  The raid boss Chimaeron in Blackwing Descent is a mentally taxing boss for healing on 25 man normal mode.  I cannot comment on the 10 man normal version but I do know my friend's guild used four healers to beat it.

Simply put, this is the first boss since... probably Burning Crusadee that actually made me feel sick to my stomach while doing it.  I honestly feel like I should've eaten a little something before the raid during this because doing it on an empty stomach was almost painful... it's like I was burning calories doing the fight.

Enough prologue... what happens?

Chimaeron has a little bot active around him that prevents your raid from dying if they have above 10,000 hit points.  If players go below 10,000HP they receive a debuff called "Low Health" (NOTE: put this on grid or whatever unit frame you use.  You'll wipe forever if you don't).  This is the premise for the fight.  Here are the mechanics that complicate things:

  • The raid has to spread out because Chimaeron shoots poison that will normally 1 shot you without the bot's buff.  This gives you the "Low Health" debuff, the less people that get hit the less people you have to pop above 10,000HP constantly
  • There has to be two tanks because one gets debuffed and the other takes the ability called "double strike".  Double strike will 1 shot a debuffed tank but a topped off tank with no debuffs can live.  Obviously the "double strike" implies Chimaeron can potentially take the target to "Low Health" and the second strike will kill them.
  • Chimaeron casts Massacre, bringing everyone to 1 health.  This is somewhat frequent, so everyone that gets brought down in health needs to be topped above 10,000HP to get rid of "Low Health"
  • Chimaeron takes the bot that prevents you from dying offline.  When this happen he casts "feud" which shoots poison at people and the damage is spread between the targets.  Everyone groups up on him for this and massive, massive AOE healing ensues.  After the feud ends the bot goes online and he casts a Massacre right away, just to piss you off.
As a holy paladin I was assigned to global heal duty.  I kept my beacon on the tank getting debuffs (the primary tank).  The only purpose of beacon on this tank is to keep him above 10,000HP.  The boss swings incredibly slow, so when a hit gives the tank "Low Health" you have a good amount of time to get him above 10,000.  The other tank takes the double strike when they happen by taunting.  I believe there's an emote, but tanks will be able to comment further.  The double strike tank needs to be topped off when they take double strike otherwise they will most likely die.  In 25 man it should be the job of a healer or two or three to make sure this happens.

Damage Output
  • Tanks take steady damage, watch debuff tank and manually top him above 10,000HP if you have a moment.
  • Chimaeron will spit poison every few seconds and bring ~3-7 people to "Low Health" in 25 man.
  • After three or four rounds of poison he will Massacre.  Anyone still with "Low Health" from previous poisons will die.
  • After a certain massacre the bot will go offline, the Low Health debuff will disappear from th raid, and everyone groups up.  Feud damage starts, requiring massive AOE heals.
Holy Paladin Talents

It's very much worth your while to obtain Tower of Radiance (even the nerfed version) in your spec for this fight.  You will need it for extra holy power and Light of Dawns during Feud.  I also highly recommend Eternal Glory for this.  Blessed Life will proc on several of Chimaeron's damage abilities.  Protector of the Innocent (at least 2 points) is good to top yourself off quicker from Low Health.  2/2 Paragon of Virtue allows cooldowns to be up sooner for feud damage.  Also, the Last Word talent is useful for critting WOG with low holy power here.

Global Healing Strategy

Your healing strategy is effective if you:
  • Always try to have 1 or 2 holy power available.  You will not be able to get up to 3 during the poisons, they are too quick.  The only goal is to get people above 10,000HP as soon as possible and you can do this with 1 or 2 holy power pretty easy, especially with the WOG crit talent at low hp in holy.
  • When poison hits 3-7 people do a holy shock (2 if you have a proc), Word of Glory on the next target (2 if Eternal Glory procs) and then either a quick heal if you're getting close to the next damage (infusioned HL) or a slower spell if you're in good shape.  Your Protector of the Innocent should top you above 10k life.
  • Save cooldowns for feud.  The rotation I like is: 
    • Divine Favor + Holy Radiance first feud.  For all feuds after Holy Radiance is started I Light of Dawn the group as much as possible, even if it's only 1 holy power.  This is where you FOL the beacon target to get extra holy power for more Light of Dawns, because you will need them.  Waiting 6 seconds for the next HS is too slow of a holy power rate of gain for this part of the fight.  Also, switch beacon for a moment to a target with less health so it isn't wasted on a tank (they don't tank during feud).
    • Avenging Wrath + Holy Radiance second feud.
    • Guardian of Ancient Kings + Holy Radiance third feud.
    • The next feud(s) will have a cooldown or two come back up.  By then you'll be wanting more heals, so you could pop DI + AW on a single feud near the end (they come up almost at the same time I found... I have 2/2 Paragon of Virtue).
  • Light of Dawn can be useful during non-feud times to bring multiple targets above 10k, but most likely not.  You're spread out, so it'll take some creative positioning.  Probably easier and more effective in 10 man.  It's better to use WOG during these parts because you can proc back your holy power for more WOG's.
General Things and Notes
  • Consecutive poison volleys have a chance to not hit the same person again... but sometimes they do.  You can get lucky and have someone who still has Low Health from the last one live, but it's in your best interest to get them above 10,000hp before the next volley.
  • The fight is like Anub'arak phase 3... for the whole fight.... on crack.  Those not used to seeing everyone on their raid frames about to die might get stressed out (you probably will anyway).
  • You can see his cast bar for Massacre... it's basically a race from the last poison volley to top off the last Low Health before the cast finishes.
  • We found it useful for the double strike tank to receive a Lay on hands following the massacre right after feud.  He'll double strike soon after and that tank isn't likely to be topped off yet.

Good luck!  This is a huge wake up call to raiding if you're coming from WOTLK.  If you feel frustrated, stick with it.  You'll be a better player for it afterwards.

December 13, 2010

Healing Cataclysm heroics and the coming raids

Just thought I'd post a follow up to my Cataclysm healing impressions post.  Heroics are very fun in greens/blues and it's refreshing to be required to use all abilities again.  I haven't seen my cooldown tracker overflow down the screen in a while.

Raiding is pretty challenging after having a brief view of it last night.  My position in a guild has been flaky for a while but I think I may have found a raiding guild to stick with finally.  I'm a sucker for organization and prepared players.  The bosses have really unique abilities that are very punishing if you do it wrong.  In WOTLK overpowered healing could compensate for bad play but it definitely isn't happening anymore.

Cataclysm Holy Paladin Gemming

The gems and enchants page has been updated on the main website.  It lists the best enchants along with cheaper alternatives.  Gem choice is also outlined for each color slot.  Currently I believe getting socket bonuses is worth it since the gems are pretty good for each slot and each gem socket gives +10 to a stat on items.  This may change and is definitely up for debate.  Something with 3 sockets will give +30 to a stat though, so it's almost an extra gem in itself.  Helms give even more of a socket bonus.

December 6, 2010

Cataclysm Item Drop Locations for Holy Paladins

The main site now has drop locations for all gear minus a few odd items here and there.  This includes raid gear.  The new has drop locations for all of the raid gear listed, so we now know what bosses drop the goods!  I've also added several items lower than ilvl 333 since the non-85 normal dungeons have lower level items than that.  I'll continue to add these as I find them (I have most of them I think).

November 30, 2010

Impressions of Cataclysm holy paladin healing

I'd like to reflect on the holy paladin healing I managed to do in beta. I didn't do raids there, but I did do a decent amount of dungeons and I've seen most of the raid boss videos.  At first I pugged a couple of normal modes in full blue heroic gear and the damage/health ratios feel... scary at first.  That's the only word I can use to explain it.  You will struggle with normal modes, especially if you haven't seen them yet.  Our heals at 85 literally do the same amount of healing that they do at 80.  The only thing really boosting their effectiveness is spellpower itself, not new ranks or anything like that.  Everyone has a lot of health, floating around 60-90k I believe.  Damage has scaled up, especially AOE damage. Most of the time during a fight people are at deficit health.  In starter gear this will be even more true.  Holy radiance is a key spell in our new arsenal.  It will save your group.  A lot.  Don't be afraid to use it.

Later on I did some heroics in the fully epic premades for the heck of it to see how gear scales.  Heroics are still decently challenging in full epic raid gear which is refreshing.  With full heroic blue gear heroics are challenging.  With starter 85 gear they will be quite brutal.  With full epics I was able to compensate for mistakes my group made and recover after situations that I wouldn't be able to handle in early blues.  I simply would have run out of mana in that other gear.  This is as it should be.

Mana is back.  Even at 80 with 4.0.3 mana isn't an issue.  We can use spells like Flash of Light over and over again, albeit we do see mana dip if we use Flash a lot at 80.  At 85 you'll have to change.  You will switch from using Flash of Light because even using 3-5 of them in a fight will sap your mana pool.  HS+HL+WoG/LoD and Holy Radiance will be your best friends and FoL/DL will be second class in your toolbox.  Divine Sacrifice will be your best friend for saving damage on the tank and transferring it to the free healing on yourself.  Cooldowns will be your best friend again (AW+Divine Favor are incredible at getting a group back on its feet with Holy Radiance).  Divine Light will be a strict backup spell, and now that Infusion of Light works to speed it up it's a great spell to heal someone from a very bad deficit.  It still costs an arm and a leg though.

You'll have to take my word for it that 80 healing, even with 4.0.3, is nothing like Cataclysm.  It's just a totally different environment due to health pools, spell cost, spell potency, and encounters in general.

November 24, 2010

Best In Slot Holy Paladin 4.0.3 updates, major glyphs

Last night I switched the main site over to show Cataclysm items by default.  If you don't want to see Cata items on this list you can filter out the "Not Available" items and see WOTLK items.

I also updated the glyphs page to reflect the 4.0.3 glyph updates.  Major glyphs are much harder to select now.  The swing glyphs (to me) seem to be Cleanse, Light of Dawn, and Beacon.  The two standby glyphs I'd use for raiding in Cata are Beacon and Divine Plea.  Cleanse depends on the fight for how useful it is and Light of Dawn depends on what size group you're healing.  If you're healing a large group (10 or 25) that requires Light of Dawn, need lots of cleansing, but you don't need to change your beacon target at all, then Divine Plea + LoD + Cleanse seem to be the best.  So there are a few major glyph combos that I think I'll probably use depending on the encounter/raid size:

10/25 man standby: Divine Plea + Beacon + LoD
10/25 man single beacon, cleanse heavy, aoe damage: Divine Plea + Cleanse + LoD
10/25 man tank/beacon swapping, cleanse heavy, little aoe damage: Divine Plea + Beacon + Cleanse
5 man: Divine Plea + Divinity + Cleanse

Why choose beacon as a standby?  Well, swapping beacons is an easy way to put a "hot"-like effect on someone and I can see it being useful in Cata to swap it for free, especially for any fight with over 1 tank (most likely a lot).  If you're doing primarily 5 mans then the beacon glyph probably isn't something you want to use.  I'd go with the Divine Plea + Divinity + Cleanse route if you're pounding 5 mans (LoD is also useless there).

As for Lay on Hands glyphs... using up two majors to buff one 8 minute cooldown spell seems silly.  Divnity is free mana though and is good for 5 mans.

I think there is too much situational glyph swapping in major glyphs.  I guess that's what Blizzard is going for, but in some encounters glyphs are going to be clearly useless.

November 6, 2010

Cataclysm Raid Loot

I would say almost all of the Cataclysm raid loot is in the main site now.  If you filter by 4.0.3 you can view all of it on the different gear pages.

One thing to note is the new random enchantment gear is not listed.  There's not an easy way to list this out since they're... random and don't have any stats on the stat websites.

October 24, 2010

October Site Updates

I have been doing weekly updates to the Cataclysm gear listing on the site (accessible by filtering for patch 4.0.3).  One of the trickiest pages is Trinkets.  There are an obscene amount of trinkets in Cataclysm and I'm sure there are even more healer ones yet to be discovered.  There are also the epic heroic mode raid trinkets which will be added at a much much later date (probably post-Cata, I doubt they'll beta test heroics... who knows).

There is a lot of Cataclysm gear in the site now.  I have the goal of listing everything ilvl 333+ on the slot pages so you know what is what.  Ranks right now are based on the weights from a few posts ago.  I've unfortunately had to rely on this heavily since there has been such a large amount of items.  The best items according to this are int/spi/haste ones.

I have also had to add in some of the pre-4.0.1 spirit items from ICC that we didn't use before.  This includes the Marrowgar neckpiece, Sindragosa ring, and Deathbringer cloak.  These are some of the best items now.

October 10, 2010

Cataclysm & 4.0.1 Holy Paladin Glyphs

I have added a new glyphs page to the main website. This page lists the new Cataclysm holy paladin glyphs in the order you're most likely to use them. There are a few interesting choices and a few boring choices.

This page is also valid for 4.0.1 holy paladins since glyphs will be updated.

In addition, I've updated the methodology page for 4.0.1 and beyond. This should give some insight on how gear is ranked for the next expansion. Since things are still likely to change this page is also subject to change.

October 9, 2010

Stat Weights for Cataclysm

Even though Cataclysm is a few months off and stats may end up changing in value, I've entered a set of default values for 4.0.1. The only thing that will change for Cata is the value of a socket since you'll be able to fit 40 stat points into a socket instead of 20. Sockets are at 100 for 4.0.1, if you want to see 4.0.3 values bump it up to 200.

The values largely come from stat discussion in beta at EJ where Zaroua (Premonition) and DiamondTear (Paragon) are discussing the value of each stat. Still subject to tweaking of course. It's somewhat depressing that mastery is such an unattractive stat for us since it has the potential to be good... it's just that the current implementation is quite bad.

Here are the weights:
Spellpower (weapon only): 1.5
INT: 5.0
SPI: 5.0
Haste: 4.0
Mastery: 2.5
Crit: 2.5
Socket (4.0.1 value): 100.0

October 1, 2010

Site Update Launched!

The main website at has been updated for 4.0.1! Here's an overview of the changes to the site:
  • All items now show their new stats. Stats from WOTLK are no longer listed when you mouse over items.
  • Two patches: 4.0.1 pre-Cataclysm and 4.0.3 post-Cataclysm. Select the filter to change your item set (see new, not-yet-available items from Cataclysm for each slot with 4.0.3)
  • MP5 is gone, spirit is in.
  • Mastery is in.
  • Spellpower now only counts for weapon pointscore.
  • Cataclysm raid items will show up for both the 25 and 10 man filters.
  • Reduced the number of WOTLK items listed. For the most part only the top of the line items remain. Lets face it, gear in WOTLK is only going to matter for a few weeks at best, and the old top items are still at the top.
  • Speaking of old top items, mail and other non-plate is no longer listed due to the 5% intellect bonus in 4.0.1 and beyond for full plate. The mail is still good, but in the big picture you'll be using it as filler gear at best. Since we're still "best in slot" technically I do not see a real reason to list all of this gear from now on (unless it is clearly way beyond any of "our" gear).
  • Item weights reset to 1 across the board. The stat shuffle has made it confusing for me to try and weight them right now. You can enter your own weights still on the individual slot pages. Note that socket value is the amount of a stat that can fit in a typical socket (20 in 4.0.1).
  • The front page now lists the top 2 items for each socket. This is my effort to be more accepting of different itemizations that may be valid. My opinion should not be absolute and only listing 1 gave that illusion. I may add a filter to only list the top item in the future (mostly for readability).
  • Item level has been added to the site on the slot pages. You can sort the tables by this value.
  • Several back-end optimizations have been added to the site like page caching and offloaded static files. It should be faster.
I appreciate any feedback, and I especially encourage you to email me at if you find a bug. I'm not a perfect PHP coder, but I get the job done. Enjoy the new site! I know I'll be getting a lot of use out of it when Cata launches.

September 30, 2010

Cataclysm Site Update Dated

Since the 4.0.1 patch will be going live on October 5th or 12th I will be launching the updated version of the BIS holy paladin website this weekend at some point. This will give an early look at the current gear's new stats and I also have all of the Cataclysm gear inputted that is known.

Some of the new features:
1. The front page shows the top two items for each slot instead of only one. This gives more flexibility to the list and doesn't make people go "dude what the....!" when they don't agree with me.
2. Weights are temporarily defaulted to 1 (no stat is weighted) because of the massive shift in stats and abilities. These will gradually correct themselves, but you can still set your own (if you think, for instance, one stat is better and you want to see how the item scores).
3. Cataclysm items with the 4.0.3 filter including dungeon blues, heroic blues, and the current epics
4. Pointscore for librams since they have stats now.
5. Updated information pages to note they are not optimized for Cataclysm.

September 26, 2010

Cataclysm Site Updates

In an effort to keep the site relevant when the pre-Cataclysm patch hits I will be making a push to update when the 4.0.1 patch hits. I will be cutting down the number of entries I have in each slot since gear is becoming much less relevant and maintaining many more entries is more work.

Other changes include the addition of the spirit weight box, removal of mp5, and the addition of a mastery box (which won't really be used in the pre-Cata patch). I am also going to make all stat weights default to 1 and socket weight to 20 (the amount of stat point possible in a gem slot pre-Cata) since everything is changing so much and I'm honestly not sure what to weight stats yet. What this means is the pointscore will reflect the raw number of total healing stats available on the item rather than a score based on which stats are actually better. You can still enter your own weights as you see fit and compare the remaining items.

Behind the scenes after the Cata patch I will be entering the Cataclysm items as more and more are revealed. Hopefully there will be a solid picture of normal, heroic dungeon, and raid items by the time Cataclysm hits and the site will be a very helpful resource for the beginning of level 85 and on. Once I have a decent starter list for Cataclysm items I will open up the patch filter for Cata.

Listing Plate
Another major change you'll notice is the absence of mail/leather/cloth from the listings when the patch hits. I will be dropping these items from the list since we gain 5% additional intellect when we wear all plate. I understand during the start of Cata we may end up using exceptional mail/cloth/leather to start gearing up, but the main goal of this site is to list the best items as a set and that will never include a non-plate item with the bonus in place. I may end up listing extremely exceptional non-plate pieces if they are significant in Cata but I can't see it happening. The list would be too big and pointless since it's very very good to maintain full plate in Cata.

Purpose of the Site
I think BIS lists will still be necessary in Cataclysm as a helpful resource but I think they need to be more open. The idea of this site is to show several alternatives on the item slot pages. I'd like to expand on this and possibly show the top two items per slot on the front index page. This will give me room to list items that have different itemization since it will be much less cut and dry in Cata.

September 18, 2010

Cataclysm Holy Paladin Updates 9/18/10

The cataclysm changes page for holy paladins has been updated on the main website. There are some very interesting changes and it seems like Blizzard is really starting to streamline the trees for us.

Holy Light base healing has been reduced by 25%. Mana costs changed to 9% of base mana, up from 6% of base mana.
After healing on the PTR I can tell why this change was made. Healing with HL meant infinite mana at such a low base cost. It also healed for a little bit too much... using HS and then HL with speed of light up was extremely effective. Blizzard wants us to dip into Flash of Light more and feel the mana burn... and they can't well do that with HL + HS + Word of Glory (no mana) taking up a large part of the rotation.

Light of Dawn base healing has been increased by 10%. Can no longer consume Holy Power to increase healing.
Light of Dawn was a little bit too much of a sacrifice as it was it seemed to me. Being situational in nature by default due to it being a positional spell, it also ate all of your holy power, has a long cooldown, and doesn't heal for that much. Even so, it's still fun to use and does provide a little "oomph" when everyone takes damage. The problem is the "oomph" is what you get and then your holy power is sapped so you can't WOG someone else (you essentially have to start over, which means people hang at their lower health far too long). Is 10% enough? Probably not since it won't increase anymore.

Improved Concentration Aura is gone.
I see this more as Blizzard trying to weed out old mechanics than a nerf really. It was a PVP talent as it was anyway, and a very unexciting one at that.

Daybreak now has a 10/20% chance to make your next Holy Shock not trigger a cooldown if used within 12 sec. (Old - 15/30% chance to reset Holy Shock's cooldown)
Really good streamlining change in my opinion. This will probably save GCD's and make our play experience more smooth. I noticed on PTR that Daybreak was more annoying than useful since I'd be casting some heals, Daybreak would proc, and I'd already be casting something else. This makes it so you can finish that cast... but also be ready to use HS twice in a row. It was too broken up before where it would be HS > cast (DAYBREAK PROC) > cast (woops, my DB procced, I should've used HS) > HS. Sometimes the Daybreak would be wasted it seemed like since HS would've come off cooldown by itself anyway.

Spiritual Focus (Tier 5) *New* - Grants hit rating equal to 50/100% of any Spirit gained from items or effects.
I'm really happy that this talent is here. I hate missing judgements on live and I love the current hit talent.

However, this talent makes us choose between Blessed Life (the new one, not the old junk) and it to maintain a 31 point holy build. Spiritual Focus is a must-have for PVP I think, but maybe not in PVE. I can see Blessed Life being a godsend on fights where we take... any kind of damage that procs it at all. Spiritual Focus is a more passive bonus... but a good one. I think Spritual Focus needs something else to make it not so clear which one to take in PVE. I'd certainly trade hit for chances to gain holy power. Blizzard should give it something like a 10% chance to get holy power on judgement. Then it would compete with Blessed Life I think (Blessed Life is 100% when you take direct damage).

Alternatively, we can break our 31 point build and use something like this to obtain Blessed Life and SF (32/2/7). You end up losing 5% WOG/HS passive crit from ret and the situational 30% WOG crit when your target is below 35% life (you still get +30%, heh), but crit is massively nerfed I don't see any problem with this. If things stay like this I'll probably go with a build like this.

Eternal Glory is now a Tier 1 Protection talent.
Good. Super important talents shouldn't be limited to getting only right at 85.

September 9, 2010

Latest Holy Paladin Nerfs

Keep 'em coming Blizzard. I'll keep tracking those changes since the WOTLK paladin so I can weigh in when the dust settles.

September 5, 2010

Level 85 Holy Paladin Spells & Abilities

Eloderung has a post on the WoW forums about level 85 holy paladin spells and abilities. It also reflects on the difficulty of the beta zones, but no 85 instances yet since they're untestable. The level 85 guardian looks fantastic as well and I hope they revamp the other spell graphics to this level.

The main thing I notice from this post is that even though the quest gear isn't in the new zones yet... everything seems pretty difficult. Eloderung is a top-geared holy paladin now so it's not like he's going in there wearing low-level 80 epics. This should mean when new gear does show up things will be pretty well tuned and not really a walk in the park. I personally hope Blizzard leans towards more difficult, even while leveling. Their players have been with this game for up to 6 years now... it's time to stop hand-holding through the entire game.

August 31, 2010

The Mana Nerf

Blizzard decided to throw a giant mana nerf at us in Catcalysm in the latest beta build... making Divine Plea only restore 10% mana and putting it on a 2 minute cooldown.

We also have illumination completely removed from our talent tree... which is a very bold move considering the backlash of it being nerfed over and over again during the past expansions.

Just judging by the size and amount of nerfs on my Cataclysm changes list I'm more than a little worried. The amount of buffs/changes to talents and baseline abilities is impressive, yes, but they've literally taken everything that WAS a holy paladin and extinguished it from the game. I really hope Blizzard knows what they're doing. I'm all for learning my class again... but completely shifting the way you play into something entirely different might drive people away.

August 14, 2010

Item level for crafted items

Ilvl 359 for crafted Blacksmith epics? Way to go Blizzard for ramping up ilvl to insane levels when you said you weren't. If an epic is worth less than it is today I'll be packing my bags for good.

See source

July 30, 2010

New Cataclysm Mastery


"Your healing spells also place an absorb shield on your target for X% of the amount healed lasting 6 sec. Absorb increased further by mastery rating. "

Amazing... it definitely makes mastery worth it instead of the mastery that combines crit and +healing. Nice job Blizzard.

Now they just need to make the prot tree's initial talents decently compete with ret (even after the latest changes adding 1 prot talent to add a little extra oomph).

I wish I could try out beta holy paladins... so much has changed. I might be able to actually reflect on the holy tree more accurately. Hint hint blizzard, my account is :P


July 17, 2010

Cataclysm Holy Paladin Changes

I've built a new page on the main website that I intend to keep updated that lists the current beta changes for holy paladins. I'm not actually in beta, but I'll try to keep it updated the best I can. I am very interested in the changes to our class.
is the page for the changes.

July 11, 2010

The end of the line...

For me at least in Wrath of the Lich King. My guild has fallen apart and due to a full time job and other commitments I'll be taking an extended break from WoW.

This website as far as I can tell will remain valid until the expansion, at which point it will require massive updates and modification. Whether I'm up to that task depends on if I'm back in the game or not. I certainly plan to TRY Cataclysm but several changes have miffed me including:

1. Old PVP titles being recycled from classic. I obtained Grand Marshal on my warrior during this time and believe me, that time spent should at LEAST keep a token title through WoW's future. 14 hours a day of grinding is a ridiculous investment and to take away the only remaining indicator of that time is wrong.

2. Not sure I like where they're going with holy paladins so far. I like the healing style change but I don't like the nerf to kings, the nerf to illumination (currently the MMOC text reads that it does not work with the new Divine Light, who knows if this will change or if it's just a mistake), and to an extent the massive homogenization of our buffs (might/wis rolled into one, other classes giving kings). I'm also not digging Healing hands... it just feels too gimmicky right now. A spell that requires us to move for positioning of all things is counter-intuitive to our other heals that require us to stand still. The only thing we cast while moving is holy shock while something like a druid could move and make use of healing hands without sacrificing a ton of other healing. Standing still on a group doing healing hands sounds useful but for our supposed solution to AOE healing it sounds limited. Ultimately I need to see a talent tree before I pass final judgement on holy paladins.

June 27, 2010

Armor downgrading in Cataclysm

From Blizzard:

Armor downgrading in Cataclysm

You will get a stat bonus of some kind if you wear "your" armor. You can still wear cloth, mail or leather of a lower armor type if it's a big upgrade, especially if it would get sharded anyway. But the days of Holy paladins in cloth or warrior wearing leather are probably behind us.

Interesting. If this is implemented in WOTLK pre-Cataclysm patch we may be seeing changes in the best gear before Cataclysm ships. One reason to grab those plate pieces and bank them for now.

June 22, 2010

Ruby Sanctum Heroic Gear

Here's probably the last update of WOTLK. Ruby Sanctum heroic gear is in. The 2 haste/crit bracers are quite interesting since they provide varied choice (more haste vs a yellow socket, yellow socket bonus is still unknown).

The belt option is also troubling, as my trusty default weights are keeping the haste/mp5 belt (I'm also inclined to keep it since it's a pretty hefty 41 mp5) instead of upgrading to the new 284 haste/crit belt. Time will tell which is better during actual hardmode gameplay.

May 18, 2010

Ruby Sanctum Gear

New Ruby Sanctum stuff is showing up on MMOC. No int trinket, nice job Blizzard!

EDIT: Added the patch to the site filters. Items for RS up in the patch pages.

February 7, 2010

Pointscore, Weights, and Updates

The site has been through a pretty large update today. First, there are new filters pertaining to group size. You can now filter by 10 man, 25 man, and items not found in either.

The backend of the site has been recoded to parse Wowhead's XML item feeds and automatically find healing stats relevant to holy paladins. What this means is that a "pointscore" can be calculated based on item stats. This is calculated via weights. I have some default weights in the website (mostly how I rank the items with some wiggle room). It's important to note that items are still manually ranked by me. The stat parse and pointscore are not absolute, because sometimes items have certain color sockets or meld differently at the level of gear the item is at. For example, the Plague Scientist Boots score highest, but they're rated under mp5 alternatives manually because other ilvl277 items are only available without mp5 and the balance of gear shifts to not favor wearing those boots.

If you don't agree with that, then you can enter your own weights and sort the item slot pages based on the pointscore by clicking the column. The format of slot pages is different, though the old layout still remains as an option if you want to view it that way (see link at the top of slot pages).

Weight values are limited to positive values under 10 (under 100 for sockets) so you can put pretty large gaps in stats if you want. I suggest writing down your preferred weights if you find some nice ones because the site stores your values based on session variables and is not permanent. To find out more on the Pointscore, like the formula, visit the pointscore page. Weights aren't shown on the main index because those items are determined only via filters and manual rankings. You'll have to visit the slot pages to see pointscore comparisons.

If anything's broken or weird email me via the contact page. I hope this allows people to view holy paladin items ranked how they prefer stats more accurately.

February 5, 2010

About Leggings

If someone who works at Blizzard sees this post, I'd love to know the reasoning of having SIX versions of sp/haste/crit itemlevel 264 leggings in the game while there are zero versions of this at itemlevel 277. Our choices for leggings at the heroic 25man level are abysmal, with crit/mp5 being the only choice. Not to mention there's only 2 (one being tier). You had it right with the ToC mail leggings (haste/mp5) but none of those exist in the entire Icecrown zone.

February 3, 2010

Lich King Items

Lich King weapons added. Pretty disappointing if you're a HL paladin and have a Val'anyr as there's really nothing for you to see on the Lich King's loot table at all. I'm not going to run the math on if the heroic sword/mace are better than Val'anyr in the long run, but I have a feeling it still won't be worth it to upgrade due to the unique Val'anyr proc and the fact that it helps us immensely with our nuke heals. I was expecting trinkets on LK personally, and I was hoping for one with intellect.

Differences going from Val'anyr to
Bloodsurge, Kel'Thuzad's Blade of Agony:
+44 intellect (including socket)
+5 crit rating
+22 haste
+272 spellpower

We're talking some serious numbers. I'm really considering the weapon, and I'd love for a theorycraft guru to dig in and see if this weapon is finally the breaking point of Val'anyr.

February 1, 2010

Frost Wing Items Live

In preparation for tomorrow, the Frost Wing items minus Lich King are now set on the "available" filter.

January 25, 2010

New BIS Item Filters

I have redesigned how I filter the items in my site's database. There are currently 4 useful filters on items, including:

1. Available
2. Not Available
3. Hard Mode
4. Normal Mode

You can combine these filters. For example, you could look at only hard mode items that are available. You'd see a lot of TOC exclusive items since ICC hardmodes aren't out yet. It should be noted if you uncheck all difficulties it will reset to the default, and the same goes with available and not available. Since the site does not parse the items themselves (the names/etc are entered by hand) this prevents filters regarding to item stats. If I pursue that further there may be bigger things in store.

You can of course access these filters on the top of all item listing pages and the main index.

January 18, 2010

Blood Wing Items on "Now Available" Filter

I'll be moving the new blood wing items that are available tomorrow to show up under the "available items". This will happen today so you get a little preview of tomorrow.

Good luck on Blood Princes and Blood Queen!

January 6, 2010

New Site Feature: Sort by Available Items

As the ICC wings are released I am tagging items if they're actually available ingame or not. You can now click the filter on the list to change to available items only instead of showing the super hardmode items that aren't out yet.