Why does the community hate Paladins so?

October 29, 2009 at 4:54 am (Uncategorized)

So I can’t make my mind up if I want to rant about enchanting vs gathering professions (protip people are selfish) or why everytime Paladins get nerfed the community responds with absolute, unabashed glee.  I would have flipped a coin but my main is a paladin and my alt is an enchanter – therefore paladins win.

So you ask, why does the community hate paladins?  I am glad you asked!

Reason the first: paladins are a strong class solo – meaning bad players (especially bad players who think they are “pro”) can’t beat them in duels.

Yes, paladins are a plate wearing class that can heal.  Yes, paladins have an immunity effect.  Yes, they can both heal and do damage during that immunity effect.  Yes, paladins have SOME burst damage capabilities.  Yes, paladins have a stun.  Finally, paladins can both heal and do damage while you are stunned.

You know what?  Outside of a very brief window in 3.0 you should never have been stunlocked to death by a paladin.  Even if you discount the enormous numbers of classes that have abilities to keep paladins at range indefinitely, or stuns of their own, the developers have been ruthless in jumping on paladin burst damage.  Utterly ruthless.  Not to mention the fact that not one paladin spec can do all of those things well.  Holy has NO offensive utility at all.  Holy paladins are the only healing spec that doesn’t have a caster spec within its class. 

Just think about that for a second.  All that spellpower, crit and haste that other healers have is useful (if not ideal) for a damage spec of the same class.  Holy paladins don’t.  Which is why they are basically useless as non-healers.  The reverse is also true.  Other than enhancement shammies and feral druids all damage dealing specs of healing classes have SOME stats in common with the healing spec.  That means that a boomkin or a shadow priest or an ele shammy can toss a heal if needed.  The only thing ret paladins have in common with holy paladins is mana.  Ret paladins can cast what 4 HLs before going oom? 

Bad players – especially those that prove how “leet” their pvp skill is by duelling – struggle to beat paladins because they treat them like any other class.  Blow your cooldowns early to either force an easy win or make the other player play defensively.  Since almost all bad players are much better offensively than defensively this is a winning strat.  Paladins have the ability to effectively reset combat – except this time the bad player doesn’t have his cooldowns up.  Of course it would be much better if the bad player instead of wringing his hands like a fool also reset combat (eat or drink, stealth, mend pet – hell do anything other than ineffectually whack on the bubbled paladin).  Force a bubble and then burn cooldowns.

Reason the second: paladins have traditionally been underpowered in at least 2 specs – meaning people treat them as a joke

Anyone play a ret paly during BC?  Of those who did, ever get into a pug raid?  lolret.  Ret paladins were the red headed step-children of BC.  Shadow priests were universally loved for mana goodness.  Enhancement shammies buffed your rogues and warriors (who for some reason didn’t pay the hybrid tax).  Kitties and Boomkins also provided big buffs (and battle rezzes), though they weren’t as desireable.  Ret pallies?  yeah they provided laughs and someone to sit at the bottom of the DPS chart.

Bears tanked magic bosses and hard hitting bosses – because they had a ton of health and dodge.  Warriors were the main tanks of two expansions.  Paladins?  yeah they tanked the trash cause it was quicker that way.  

Healy paladins?  Well they were the only spec viable in vanilla wow, but the further BC went the less viable paladins became.  By black temple the raid damage was vastly exceeding the tank damage.  By Sunwell holy paladins were sitting on the sidelines.  There were two classes that got absolutely hosed by Sunwell.  Mages (who have the lowest survivability of any class along with the lowest dps of any main dps spec) and Paladins (who couldn’t dps hard enough, or heal enough targets quickly enough or survive bosses well enough to justify a spot) sat outside Sunwell buffing people on the way in.

Reason the third: blizzard have always been wary of letting paladins be too strong.

There are several blue posts on this point.  Blizzard are concerned that a healing, plate wearing class could essentially dominate all other classes.  Consequently paladins get hotfixed nerfs while other classes remain OP for an entire patch.

Reason the fourth: the three paladin specs are so diverse that they have nothing in common

There was an embarrasing number of prot paladins asking for nerfs to the holy prot pvp specs.  Do you see bear druids asking for tree nerfs?  Of course not, because Druids play as a class.  Plus trees and chickens share gear to an extent, as do cats and bears, they have an indentity to an extent.  There is no paladin community.  There is a ret community, a tank community and some people who play holy paladins.  That is all.

Reason the fifth: holy paladin gear is useless to everyone but holy paladins

So it gets de’ed a lot.  You don’t need a lot of paladin healers – once they have their gear you de it week after week.  Pisses off clothies a lot (cause more people want cloth gear than anyone else).

The latest nerfs

Forget about the lay on hands nerf except for one thing.  How could anyone at blizzard have thought this was a good idea?  Lay on hands is most useful when levelling.  Its also occassionally useful (less than once a night) as a crappy tank cooldown.  Its somewhat useful as a mana potion.  It is not game breaking in any way.  It effects fucking duels and can be used once a battleground.  Its just something else bad players complain about cause they don’t want to accept they are bad.  It makes you wonder if anyone has any idea what they want to achieve?

Paladins don’t have a lot of iconic abilities for a class that is basically the face of Warcraft.  Why take this away for no reason?

Sacred shield?  Sacred shield is a shit ability.  There I said it.  I admitted it.  Its fucking crap in PvE.  Theoretically it should be good but in practice its just disappointing.  However, as an aside, you can’t fucking fix the holy tree by nerfing current abilities and making them deep holy talents.  Someone, somewhere, needs to apply some thought to the actual issues facing holy paladins and redesign things so they work.  Stop applying bandaids (beacon, FoL hot, all the set bonusses other than tier 7 4 piece) and address the fact that at least 50% of the holy tree is filler shit, the fact that there is no synergy between the 3 trees at all, the fact that there is no synergy between the 3 specs at all, the fact that plate spellpower gear is crap and the fact that no-one seems to have a consistent design vision for what a paladin should be.        

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1 Comment

  1. The year in review « WoW – Silk's Blog said,

    […] I like the enchanting post cause I have had that rant saved up since BC.  I think that paladins ARE the most disliked class in the game.  This post on the state of raiding and the vast chasm between normal and hard modes is almost […]

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