So, it’s Patch 3.2. You may have many friends and guildies excited about certain aspects of this patch, but you may have noticed your Holy paladin acting a little differently. They might not be as bubbly as they used to. As everyone is excited to do heroics for Emblems of Conquest, they might just be shrugging it off. Something is bothering them.
You see, with Patch 3.2, the party’s over for Holy. Since 3.0, we’ve been able to heal with nearly unlimited amounts of mana. Oh, they tried to stop us before, with a change to Divine Plea in 3.09 that reduced healing by 50% while active. This hurt a little, but we still had mana to spare if Divine Plea was used correctly. We still laughed at the idea of mana potions. It was intellect gems all around. Innervates? Save that for the priests.
Then, with 3.2, Illumination got nerfed. Again.
You see, when Holy finally got properly itemized gear in The Burning Crusade, it became immediately obvious that paladins were the best healers. In fact, the bleeding edge raiding guilds early on in BC were only using paladins due to the fact that when they crit with a heal, they got the mana cost of the spell refunded, so stacking crit gear meant unlimited mana. So patch 2.1 nerfed the talent to refund on 60% of the mana back. We cried about it (well, I did, anyway) but we moved on and settled into our proper healing role for the rest of the expansion.
Then came 3.0 and the Era of the Big Heal. Holy Light has become the key spell for paladins in Wrath, being able to get a majority of the mana back from that big casting cost spell was a large part of our close to limitless mana. Add in a libram that reduced the cost by 113 mana (but did not affect mana refunded on a crit) and the ability to still come out ahead on mana with Divine Illumination and paladins did not really have to worry about anything until the latest patch.
Five points in Illumination now only refunds 30% of the mana cost of a healing spell crit. It’s almost not worth having. In fact, I would gladly put the points elsewhere if they weren’t required for Holy Shock. I’ve already noticed a huge impact on my mana just from doing heroics and it makes me sad.
So pass the Runic Mana Potions, hook me up with some Lustrous Majestic Zircon and yeah druids, that IS a paladin asking for an Innervate. And hug your Holy paladin today, because it will make them feel a little better about finally running out of mana.