The state of Disc (Re: GC's PvE concerns)

90 Human Priest
18035
The statement that I've heard over and over again from Ghost Crawler (via blue trackers and twitter feeds) over the past month is that discipline priests are overpowered in PvE (and this is why holy priests have switched to discipline, etc.)

I personally find that on the whole the opposite is true, but ONLY if you discount spirit shell, the throughput boost from which is only really a gimmick at the moment, considering that it's going to be disconnected from disc mastery.

So, why am I saying this?

The simple fact is that if I try to compete with other healing classes via direct heals, without using spirit shell or atonement, I end up with pretty serious mana problems pretty fast. (This is not as bad as it was before rapture was fixed, but it's still pretty serious.)

Since I started playing disc as a serious PvE healing spec (beginning of ICC) I've seen a few extremes in discipline's playstyle. During Cataclysm, it was rapture that carried the spec to viability. Early on it was difficult to compete. As the expansion continued, disc became more and more powerful to the point of being overpowered and getting nerfed (primarily because discipline could stack output stats and neglect regen almost entirely.

In one or two of your internal builds I think you need to remove spirit shell and atonement entirely and do a little testing. See how disc stacks up under those circumstances and let that inform your thinking a bit.

My concern is basically that right now my spec is relying on a gimmick (spirit shell) for output and another gimmick (atonement) to remain viable for mana regen.

Blizzard is WELL known for overreacting to OP-ness and nerfing things to the point of unplayability because they don't understand the basic dynamics on which the spec is operating.

I'm concerned that the same could happen in this instance, primarily because discipline is NOT overpowered at base. It's a case of two gimmicks floating a spec that has a shaky foundation at best.

*Also note: The reason that there was so much screaming about discipline being weak at the beginning of MoP is that there are serious, systemic problems with the spec. Spirit shell was gimmicked and that fixed the problems temporarily. Take that away and you see a return to those original issues.*
Edited by Eldil on 1/29/2013 3:01 PM PST
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90 Night Elf Druid
15480
01/29/2013 02:52 PMPosted by Eldil
Blizzard is WELL known for overreacting to OP-ness and nerfing things to the point of unplayability because they don't understand the basic dynamics on which the spec is operating.


Umm when did this ever happen, in the history of WoW?

You are misguided. Because you didn't even mention PoH and DA which is silly. Atonement has nothing to do with the stregth of disc currently.

The discs i play with went into the last boss of protecters at 100% mana while the druid, myself, and the paladin were gasping calling for HoH's. So i would have to say you need to get a rapture timer if you are having trouble with mana.
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90 Human Priest
18035
And obviously you don't understand how those disc priests are doing their jobs or what they're doing.

You don't have a fricking clue.

Don't speak up when you're clueless.
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90 Blood Elf Mage
11000
What a terrible thread.
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90 Blood Elf Priest
10165
01/29/2013 04:24 PMPosted by Mahourai
What a terrible thread.


Aren't they all? They're all self-important geniuses who know exactly why the spec is "broken", ignoring the fact that things are still being tweaked and changed and tested on the PTR - because it's the PTR. On the first page of the healing forum alone there are more than 5 threads with the same general tirade.

Adjustments are being made. Constructive criticism is acknowledged and considered, but egotistical attitudes are not.
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90 Human Priest
18035
What a terrible thread.


Aren't they all? They're all self-important geniuses who know exactly why the spec is "broken", ignoring the fact that things are still being tweaked and changed and tested on the PTR - because it's the PTR. On the first page of the healing forum alone there are more than 5 threads with the same general tirade.

Adjustments are being made. Constructive criticism is acknowledged and considered, but egotistical attitudes are not.


Now I'm confused. Nothing I said was unconstructive or a tirade. I simply stated a concern that I haven't seen voiced often.

Get your head out of your rear.

Don't hijack a thread that has nothing to do with what you're talking about.
Edited by Eldil on 1/29/2013 4:44 PM PST
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100 Blood Elf Priest
12155
01/29/2013 03:51 PMPosted by Sadiemay
You are misguided. Because you didn't even mention PoH and DA which is silly. Atonement has nothing to do with the stregth of disc currently.

Well, that's not entirely true:

- Atonement is a major reason why Disc is exceptionally powerful on fights with damage modifiers.

- Atonement (now at 40 yards) is the major reason why Disc is not fundamentally broken like it was when MoP launched. Atonement lets Disc spot heal with pretty good efficiency and adequate (sometimes outstanding) throughput, so the spec isn't entirely 100% chained to PoH.

However, Atonement is not the source of the current broken-OP-ruin-everybody-else's-fun status of the spec. And it has nothing to do with mana (except in the sense that it saves you from having to dump mana on pathetic off-Grace single-target heals or 1-target PoH), so I don't know what the OP is on about there. The problems with the spec are exactly what the devs are nerfing: Spirit Shell and excessive DAs.

Is it an over-nerf? Maybe. Probably. I'm a little discouraged that we haven't seen any changes since Jan. 17. But I'd like to make clear that Disc is not in the same situation it would be in if you'd killed SS and DA in November; it has a viable spot heal in 40-yard Atonement, and the healing portion of PoH is 25% stronger (for a total almost equal to PoH + DA in November). And they're providing some compensation for lost absorbs with the PWS cost reduction.

Still probably needs more tweaking, I'm not arguing that.
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90 Human Priest
18035
[quote="77882483471"]
However, Atonement is not the source of the current broken-OP-ruin-everybody-else's-fun status of the spec. And it has nothing to do with mana (except in the sense that it saves you from having to dump mana on pathetic off-Grace single-target heals or 1-target PoH), so I don't know what the OP is on about there. The problems with the spec are exactly what the devs are nerfing: Spirit Shell and excessive DAs.

Is it an over-nerf? Maybe. Probably. I'm a little discouraged that we haven't seen any changes since Jan. 17. But I'd like to make clear that Disc is not in the same situation it would be in if you'd killed SS and DA in November; it has a viable spot heal in 40-yard Atonement, and the healing portion of PoH is 25% stronger (for a total almost equal to PoH + DA in November). And they're providing some compensation for lost absorbs with the PWS cost reduction.

Still probably needs more tweaking, I'm not arguing that.


Thanks for the serious response and the alternate perspective.

To answer your question regarding the mana efficiencey of atonement:

Atonement gives discipline two things. First it gives better mana efficiency for single target spot heals than any other class gets by a long shot (estimate 20 or 30%+ I'm not really sure but it's massive). Atonement's The throughput cap on it is significant but high enough that it's not debilitating and is still overpowered in my opinion.

Second it gives us a massive throughput increase (through archangel) that we can use with everything else (especially AOE throughput spells like PoH, activating divine aegis).

Spirit shell is already being fixed. I absolutely agree with what they're doing to it.

NOW: Take archangel out of the picture also and the mana efficiency from atonement as well

All of a sudden disc priests are actually below other healers in mana regen and efficiency (And don't say misinformed things about rapture. Rapture = 1 free power word shield every 12 seconds at best. That's all it is.)

What that means is that we are forced to use archangel and atonement to be competitive (which means dpsing while we heal). I'm not a huge fan of that model (I've gotten good at it, but I don't like being forced into it instead of having it as an alternative.)

Then discipline is still riding on one gimmick (atonement+archangel) instead of having the base mana efficiency of our healing spell cost compared to our regen fixed.
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100 Blood Elf Priest
12155
Oh, I actually agree with you. Atonement/AA is not at all optional anymore (especially post-5.2 when PoH won't be able to compete with it for spot healing effectiveness).

If it's still a design goal for Atonement healing to be optional, then the current design is failing to meet that goal. Disc's single-target/spot/scattered AoE healing needs another look for all of the reasons I outlined at length and in detail in November.

If it is not a design goal for Atonement to be optional anymore, it would be nice to see some communication/acknowledgement of that from the devs, so that priests at least know where we stand and can give feedback based on the new design plan.

I guess I've sort of been working under the assumption that it's not supposed to be optional anymore, because if it was supposed to be optional, they would have (1) made it a talent and (2) unf*cked the rest of Disc's toolkit.
Edited by Kaels on 1/29/2013 6:03 PM PST
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01/29/2013 02:52 PMPosted by Eldil
The simple fact is that if I try to compete with other healing classes via direct heals, without using spirit shell or atonement, I end up with pretty serious mana problems pretty fast. (This is not as bad as it was before rapture was fixed, but it's still pretty serious.)


Really? You ignore the strengths of your spec and cast as if you were another spec and you have trouble? You don't say....
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90 Pandaren Shaman
9855
01/29/2013 06:02 PMPosted by Morenn
The simple fact is that if I try to compete with other healing classes via direct heals, without using spirit shell or atonement, I end up with pretty serious mana problems pretty fast. (This is not as bad as it was before rapture was fixed, but it's still pretty serious.)


Really? You ignore the strengths of your spec and cast as if you were another spec and you have trouble? You don't say....


shhhhh, dont ruin his "logic" Jo
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100 Blood Elf Priest
12155
01/29/2013 06:02 PMPosted by Morenn
The simple fact is that if I try to compete with other healing classes via direct heals, without using spirit shell or atonement, I end up with pretty serious mana problems pretty fast. (This is not as bad as it was before rapture was fixed, but it's still pretty serious.)


Really? You ignore the strengths of your spec and cast as if you were another spec and you have trouble? You don't say....

Well, I agree that not using Spirit Shell is a silly test (you'd want to get on the PTR and test using the new nerfed SS) but if Atonement is still supposed to be optional, then trying to heal without using it would be a valid test of its optionality.
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90 Blood Elf Priest
10770
Disc is potent but boring. IMO, some of the balances are fine but we need a more engaging AoE toolbox. Holy is by far the more fun spec, but disc is too strong to not use.
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but if Atonement is still supposed to be optional, then trying to heal without using it would be a valid test of its optionality.


I don't disagree with you there. Some priests may remember I was fairly up in arms over atonement becoming baseline for disc. However, I have resigned myself to the fact that it is here, and it is staying and have tried to make the most of it.

If the thread were about Atonement not being optional, I am good with that, because I agree it is not optional*... but that's not the direction the first post seemed to take.

* Your throughput will always be noticeably higher with it's usage than without.
Edited by Morenn on 1/29/2013 6:21 PM PST
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90 Blood Elf Priest
13110
01/29/2013 06:08 PMPosted by Obfuscare
Disc is potent but boring. IMO, some of the balances are fine but we need a more engaging AoE toolbox. Holy is by far the more fun spec, but disc is too strong to not use.


See, I feel exactly the opposite. I find Holy to be boring. I really enjoy the Atonement style of Disc.
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90 Human Priest
18035
Oh, I actually agree with you. Atonement/AA is not at all optional anymore (especially post-5.2 when PoH won't be able to compete with it for spot healing effectiveness).

If it's still a design goal for Atonement healing to be optional, then the current design is failing to meet that goal. Disc's single-target/spot/scattered AoE healing needs another look for all of the reasons I outlined at length and in detail in November.

If it is not a design goal for Atonement to be optional anymore, it would be nice to see some communication/acknowledgement of that from the devs, so that priests at least know where we stand and can give feedback based on the new design plan.

I guess I've sort of been working under the assumption that it's not supposed to be optional anymore, because if it was supposed to be optional, they would have (1) made it a talent and (2) unf*cked the rest of Disc's toolkit.


And this is the whole point of what I'm saying.

As of right now it's NOT optional but as of last I knew it WAS supposed to be optional.

(Nor would it be particularly hard to make it optional again. just change it's mana efficiency and output to roughly mirror the normal throughput you get without it and change archangel so it doesn't provide an insane boost to everything else.)

That being the case, I'm calling it a gimmick.

If it's *supposed* to be optional then the main base throughput/mana cost of ALL the other spells need to be fixed. They're STILL based on the rapture values we were seeing in cataclysm and that just straight up doesnt work now.
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90 Goblin Warlock
7720
OP's definition of gimmick feels incredibly arbitrary ( I can't fathom how by any stretch of the imagination you can call direct throughput increases that do exactly what they say on the tin as 'gimmicky').

His conclusion that 'disc isn't very good if you ignore its core mechanics' seems like a pretty pointless one to make too.

The pompous derision of anyone who disagrees with him is just the cherry on top I suppose.
Edited by Leviathan on 1/29/2013 7:17 PM PST
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90 Night Elf Druid
15480
01/29/2013 04:13 PMPosted by Eldil
You don't have a fricking clue.


You are correct sir. I know nothing about healing. Sorry for disturbing your manifesto.

01/29/2013 04:45 PMPosted by Kaels
- Atonement is a major reason why Disc is exceptionally powerful on fights with damage modifiers.


Same thing why TC was strong for shaman. It was on one or two gimmick fights per tier so i discount them completely in the overall model of a class.
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100 Blood Elf Priest
12155
01/29/2013 07:11 PMPosted by Sadiemay
Same thing why TC was strong for shaman. It was on one or two gimmick fights per tier so i discount them completely in the overall model of a class.

Well, there are actually more than one or two fights this tier where it's relevant, including some serious DPS checks. We'll have to see if next tier is the same way.
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90 Blood Elf Monk
7725
I fail to see the issue with this; if you have some sort of vendetta against AA/A then roll a holy priest. If you rolled a non priest healer and was dissatisfied with the mechanics, then you can complain.

Also, its a new expac, classes change in ways that we might not appreciate, reroll or unsub.
Edited by Kungfuwaifu on 1/29/2013 7:33 PM PST
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