Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Avenger's Shield

Avenger's Shield. The 41 point talent for the Protection tree. Currently it has a range of 8-30 yards. After the upcoming patch, the minimum range will be removed, meaning as long as it's within 30 yards, we can hit it.

My immediate response upon hearing this was thinking: Yay! More hate, since we can cast it in melee! I posted this elsewhere, and was reminded of something: When casting you aren't blocking, dodging, or parrying. Considering that instanced mobs, esp. Heroics and Raids can crush you like a bug if you don't do one of the three things I listed above, casting a spell that's not instant isn't really a viable option...

Thus with that information in mind, the uses of Avenger's Shield are greatly minimized. Pretty much it has two purposes:
1) a distanced aggro ability to pull the mobs off the puller. This is nothing new, but the loss of the minimum range means you don't need to be the first puller, since you can use it at any point, allowing far more control over who's pulled (bouncing shield potentially = tons of adds).
2) If you lose aggro (this really shouldn't be a huge deal for Paladins... our major issues are with mitigation and less stamina), you can use Avenger's shield to pull it back to you. This was not really a viable option before, if you lost aggro and the mob remained close to you.
Both of these issues are pretty major problems with Paladin tanks, esp. the lack of a good (any range) holy spell to start off and grab aggro with. You could start off with JoR, but most times it really matters, I want to start off with JotC, so I can maximize holy damage dealt. This means that getting aggro in the first 8 to 10 seconds (depending on talent build) could be problematic. And if someone grabs aggro, right after you use your Judgement (a particularly powerful crit could do this...), if they are stupid and don't stop attacking, even through the use of Pally Taunt trouble would be had regaining aggro until judgement was ready again.

The real question is... is something that's so specialized worth giving up other talents, and possibly even an 11 point talent in Holy or Ret tree? I dunno.

No comments: