Oh, those sneaky Blizzard folks are at it again.
They snuck in a small patch last night, 4.0.6a, with a few more untested and surprise changes to the classes. This was quite unexpected, considering that they had close to a month to test this patch on the PTR.
But the change of interest to the Holy Paladins is a big one:
Beacon of Light no longer triggers from Light of Dawn.This is very interesting, actually. This is now the second time that they have stealthily nerfed Light of Dawn for being too good. I talked about the first round of nerfs in my Tower of Fizzle post, in which I suggested that instead of removing Holy Light's synergy with Tower of Radiance, preventing Light of Dawn from transferring through the Beacon of Light was a better way to go.
I'm gratified that Blizzard seems to be listening to me, but, err, I didn't mean for you to do both!
As of right now, Light of Dawn is a very small heal. It's tiny, in fact. So much so that the only compelling reason to cast is was the fact that it transferred 50% of it's heals to the Beacon target. It turns out that one-half of five or six little heals adds up to one big heal on the Beacon, which apparently is unbalanced.
What makes this truly intriguing is that in response the the outcry after the first round of nerfs, Nethaera posted on the official forums (
This means that, with this most recent change, Blizzard has reversed a fundamental design philosophy of Paladin healing, more than likely due to it being too mana efficient. This change is one more nail in the coffin of the whole Holy Power experiment, which in my opinion is a complete and utter failure. I'm not sure how Blizzard expected giving Paladins free heals not to lead to mana efficiency. Isn't that the whole point of a free heal in the first place? It seems to me that the Holy Power concept has caused more grief and problems for the Holy spec than it has solved, and with this change Paladin healing simply has no synergy whatsoever. It is now just a random collection of spells that you can cast, and you should keep a Post-It note on your screen with a list of what does and does not transfer to the Beacon or generate Holy Power.
Not that Holy Power is all that useful anymore.
You know what? I think I'm okay with this change. A zen-like feeling of calm and peace is washing away the nerdrage that I was feeling last night when I heard of this change. I've entered a chakra-like state of bliss and serenity. It's okay, honestly. Blizzard has spoken from on high and said, "You know that whole 'Paladin raid-healing' thing we were playing around with? Yeah, just forget about it".
Holy Paladins are single target healers again. It's official.
We're all back in our old comfort zone. You'll hear a lot of raid leaders again saying:
"Holy Paladin in the raid? Just stick him on the tanks. They're not as good as they used to be, but they are good tank healers.
And it's not like they can do anything else anyway."