Now, part two of the changes announced for Cata...
Since I play a priest as well, I am interested in the changes they have planned and how that compares with the changes in druids.
"Mana will be a bigger consideration for all healers. We aren't trying to make healing more painful; we're trying to make it more fun. When the cost of a spell isn't an issue, then casting the right spell for the job is less of an issue because you might as well just use your most powerful spell all of the time. We are, however, getting rid of the five-second rule, because we don't want to encourage standing around doing nothing. We're also going to cut back on the benefits of buffs such as Replenishment so priests (and all healers) don't feel as penalized when those buffs aren't available."
This is pretty much a summation of a few different comments made recently, rolled into one package.
What the hell? Reiterating it isn't going to make it easier to swallow, Blizzard. You give more classes Replenishment but take away the benefits. Can you just admit that it was a bad idea to base everything around it in the first place? Too late now, you screwed up and we all know it. Instead of a neat little boost offered by Shadow priests, it became the standard for mana regen so you had to add more classes that offered it so we wouldn't choke on our own OOMs. Now you are back peddling on an already mired system and we get to be jerked around. Way to go.
By the way, I am still insulted that you think we will use our best and most powerful spells because mana isn't an issue. Well what the hell did you think we were going to use our mana for? Dpsing? And, isn't it a sign of progress when your healers can actually use a good tool for the sake of keeping the raid alive and thus seeing the content you labored on? Fun is not wiping. Fun is not telling the raid over vent "I'm out of mana so you died." No, no, no.
"Misery will no longer affect spell Hit chance. We want players to be able to gear themselves around a Hit cap that isn't variable depending on group composition."
I didn't see a mention of a change to Faerie Fire, but I am sure that if Misery is getting changed then so will IFF. While they are at it, I bet Heroic Presence will also be changed. It better be. If they say that group composition is not what they want us to depend on, then the blue hoofers should be getting a different racial.
Well we used to have spirit.
"Divine Spirit and Prayer of Spirit will be removed from the game. As Spirit will be the primary mana-regeneration stat, we don't want it to vary as much between solo, small group, and raid play. Blessing of Kings and Mark of the Wild will not boost Spirit either."
Again with the mana based conversation. Coupled with Meditation added to the Shaman's list of changes, I am curious how it will play out. Make Spirit a regen stat then remove mechanics which boost it. I am beginning to get depressed. Next thing you know, Innervate will be spirit based again. On second thought, that conflicts with their "Bring the player, not the class" mantra.
Hey, Stupid! Get out of the fire!
"Pull a party or raid member to your location. Leap of Faith (or "Life Grip") is intended to give priests a tool to help rescue fellow players who have pulled aggro, are being focused on in PvP, or just can't seem to get out of the fire in time. Instant. 30-yard range. 45-second cooldown."
This, potentially, could be a powerful tool. Couple this with the Shaman rain or CoH and this may add some much needed flavor ( and synergy) to healing. Now Priests can join the DKs in the creation of lame macros.
The downside is this: why move when the priest can move me? People already stop moving out of stuff for the sake of beating dps timers and barriers so adding this will just be one more excuse. I can see it now...
Failman- "Why didn't I get gripped?"
Priest- "Why didn't you move?"
What also could happen is the devs designing gimmicks around this spell. Raid is all of a sudden needing to be moved to a different part of the room, which can be accomplished best with a couple priests.
Power Word: Barrier
"The closest analogue to PW:B is the DK Anti-Magic Zone, but it has some important differences, such as a way to counter it in PvP (since it absorbs all damage, not just magical damage)."
I see the theme though. Less passive abilities means less raid composition around classes. This also means more button/macro/clique mashing.
All of this depresses me to a point. I don't feel excited or energized by most if not all of the changes announced. In fact, I am starting to wonder if being a healer is what I will be in the next expansion. Some of the ideas expressed by the Dev team actually makes me rather angry because it doesn't fit in line with how I think my class or my role should be played. This goes beyond being a tree but goes to the fundamental role of healing.
So Blizz, there is still time to impress me. Make it count.