Saturday, August 14, 2010

Long Arm of the Law - Ret's New Gap-Closer. [12759]

New Beta builds inevitably mean new Paladin changes, and yesterdays' is no different. The talent calculators haven't been updated quite yet but Curse Networks twitter feed released a few very interesting changes. I know a number of Retribution Paladins will be very interested in them:

Improved Judgement - Now increases Judgement range by 10/20 yards.

Okay, so a longer range Judgement for Ret (and other specs willing to throw two talents in Tier 1 Ret). Longer range always represents a DPS increase in encounters with target switching so that's a flat buff to the talent, even though the cooldown reduction is no a factor. PvP considerations would be more significant if the Judgement debuff still limited run-speed to 100% (as Judgement of Justice does now), but this effect has been rolled into Seal of Justice's debuff (as opposed to a minor stun). The trade-off therefore is one of damage for utility when choosing your PvP Seal, and it should be interesting to see if Judgement will be able to proc SoJ's speed limiting effect.

We then come to the gap-closer:

Long Arm of the Law (tier 3): 50/100% chance; 30% move speed buff for 4 sec when using Judgement on targets >= 15 yds away.

As gap closer's go, it's an interesting mechanic. The principle is that if your target is a long distance away you've got some ability to close the gap, but staying on a close (<15 yard) target requires some utility cooldowns if that target has snares/sprints of their own. In PvE it's a straight buff for target-switching encounters such as Professor Putricide where time-on-target is paramount.

On the flip-side, this talent is a sprint, not a snare. As such, snares against you will still be very effective and mean that closing the gap to competent Hunters and Mages will remain a difficult proposition. Equally, staying in melee range will be harder due to the lack of Judgement of Justice, possibly necessitating the use of SoJ in place of a Seal which deals significant damage. I'm also not sure if Pursuit of Justice is still a part of the Cataclysm talent trees. Another point worth investigating is just how close to someone you can get in 4 seconds at 30% speed from 15-30 yards away.

And yeah, I'd call it the 'Swift Hand of Justice' if there weren't already a trinket by that name.

Other interesting changes revealed were:

Sanctity of Battle: Causes haste to reduce the cooldown of Crusader Strike.

Divine Storm buffed to 150% weapon damage (from 90%) with 3 Holy Power.

Hammer of the Righteous - Hits target for 39% weapon dmg, all other targets in range for x to y holy dmg. 4.5 sec cooldown.

Divine Favor - Increases spell casting haste/crit by 20% for 20 sec. 3 min cooldown.

As well as the new graphic for Holy Power charges.

I'm highly unconvinced by Haste reducing the cooldown of Crusader Strike unless CS's base cooldown has increased significantly (beyond the current 4.5s). The 1.5sec Global Cooldown on most Ret abilities result in this only effective when haste brings CS's cooldown close to whole multiple of 1.5s (give or take latency), and tbh I'm really struggling to see the point. Hopefully there'll be more information on how this works soon.

Finally, Eskostar in the Elitist Jerks Cataclysm Change for Ret thread mentions an explicit change to Divine Purpose: 40% chance to generate holy power on Judgement, Exorcism, Templar's Verdict, Divine Storm, Inquisition and Holy Wrath. This greatly increases the Holy Power generation rate, though whether you'd spend this HP on anything other than Templar's Verdict/Divine Storm is another question.


Klepsacovic 14/08/2010, 15:51  

A very short sprint is about what I think we need. With BoF and PoJ we have a fighting chance of staying close. Certainly not perfect, but taken all together, I think it will put ret in a decent spot.

Christian Clark 14/08/2010, 20:53  

It's a good start, but I can't help but feel that more needs to be done.

Firstly, it's a magic effect, so, it can be spellstolen, dispelled, purged, etc.

Next, it doesn't last very long, when in fact, it's supposed to last 10 seconds.

Despite my concerns, I am glad they're trying to solve the problem, though, once more, more needs to be done.

Suicidal Zebra 15/08/2010, 19:24  

Bleh, forgot to check whether it was Dispellable. With the removal of dispel protections that's going to be a real PITA given that those classes we'd most want to use it against are pretty dispel happy.

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