Dear Mr. Street (Ghostcrawler), My Class is Awesome
I've actually always been a fan of Greg Street, aka Ghostcrawler. I do not possess the kind of personality that enables me to go out on forums and allow people to rip me apart - but he does it every day.

So I was really sad when yet another forum thread turned into "let's rip GC apart and talk about what a failjob he does" and this time, GC seemed to actually get frustrated enough about it to want to back off. I could link you all the relevant WoW Forums posts, but instead, just check out the article at wow.com.

When did offering suggestions and creative ideas to developers morph into constant QQing? Why all the negativity? I've made my own posts before giving my own thoughts about where I think the developers have it wrong, but in spite of all that, I never took it down to the level where I declared that Greg Street should be fired, he does a terrible job, blah blah blah. So instead of all the negative mumbo jumbo so prevalent in the WoW community, let's try something different.

The Opposite of QQ: Dear Ghostcrawler, Priests are Awesome.

  • Remember back when you guys nerfed Circle of Healing and gave us a cooldown? We grumbled, but we all knew that it was necessary, because CoH was just too awesome. And it's STILL uber-awesome. I'll even forgive you for the Prayer of Healing nerf - because it was OP as well.
  • What other class gets two significantly different healing specs?
  • I'm sure it's happened before, but aside from a few VoA runs where you really want to diversify your raid mix of classes due to gear drops, I've never been turned down from joining a raid simply due to my class. Everyone wants a priest.
  • When I tell people of other guilds I have a level 80 raiding priest, they drool, and try to recruit me. 
  • I know everyone whines about the priest leveling process. Yes, it's rough. But after leveling several priests, I've figured out that the first 10-20 levels are a nightmare - and 20-40 is a blast.
  • Lightwell IS awesome. Developers keep making it awesomer. It's not their fault everyone else sucks.
  • We are the original healer, the ultimate in healing. We are well-rounded, with a little bit of everything. Is there room for improvement in certain details? Of course - we could all use tweaks. But don't ever misunderstand me. My class is absolutely awesome.
  • I realize I can't really speak to Shadow Priest viability in a raid... maybe all the complaints are well warranted. But from my experiences, everyone is happy to have a Shadow Priest (or several!) in the raid as well.
Balancing a Class

It can't be easy. Personally, when I look at class balance, I think of a few particular things:
  • Option for strong solo DPS
  • Good Raiding balance (DPS or Heals)
  • PvP Viability (DPS or Heals)
Shadow is actually pretty weak for solo DPS before level 40 - IMO, Holy is stronger. Back in BC, a strong Holy/Disc mix would actually net you much stronger single player DPS than Shadow - Shadow didn't actually do that much damage - it was more of a support role.

This brings us to raiding balance. For healing, we have two very different, very solid options. Disc still needs considerable tweaking, but that is not a surprise - Disc is very different from any other type of healing offered by healing classes in this game, so it's bound to have different kinds of difficulties in development. Holy is FINE. Of course I'd love little changes here in there, but overall? Holy is well rounded and solid. So what about Shadow? QQ we don't do enough damage, wanh.

Now, I will put in the disclaimer that I am certainly no expert on s-priesting, so feel free to take all of this with a grain of salt. But Shadow does a helluva lot more damage than it did back in BC. There was a tradeoff involved there - Shadow Priests had to sacrifice a lot of their support role strength (i.e. mana battery ftw) in order to gain those increases in DPS. But even with those changes, Shadow Priests are STILL strong support roles. We need the Replenishment. We can be a lot more flexible with our allotment of raid healers if we have a couple of shadow priests and their Vampiric Embrace. Misery makes sure everyone really IS hit capped. With all those bonuses that make you a fantastic addition to any raid, you cannot expect to top the damage meter. That is the meaning of BALANCE.

I'll completely avoid the whole PvP discussion, because I'm a noob at PvP, but I just want to say that the other day, on my Forsaken priest, I MCed someone off of a cliff in Arathi Basin for the first time ever. And DAMN it felt good.

The point of all this is to QQ about the QQers. You cannot have everything in one spec. Ideally, you would have a little bit of everything in one class, mixed up between various specs, but even that is not always an option. LoLSmite priests actually do a TON of damage, for the record - raiding included. But they aren't tweaked for raiding viability (such as hit rating, etc), and it's something that I hope Blizz puts some more thought into for the future.






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2 Responses
  1. Grimmtooth Says:

    It's funny, I never really felt that leveling my priest was all that painful. I developed a holy/disc hybrid spec and just went with it. No, it wasn't like a warlock. But I had a warlock already. Different is ... fun.

    I tried shadow around level 50 or so and hated it. But now I have it as the second of my dual specs, and use it mainly for dailies and stuff ... not because my Disc build can't do it anymore, but because moving the buttons around is a pain, and I like them where they are for healing. :)

    Still, the few times I've run Shadow DPS in a group, it wasn't bad at all. It was rather mediocre, but then I don't have +hit gear, either. Plus I laid out healz and manaz all over the place. And Shadow really does have the most awesome AoE of them all.

    I recall when 3.0 hit and all the QQ over Warlocks hit the boards. I didn't see it. The new Warlock was DIFFERENT, but not inferior. In the hands of a competent operator, 3.x warlocks are teh shizzle. Over time, those operators rose to the top, and got copied. Blizz mysteriously 'fixed' the warlock by doing very little.

    Ghostcrawler knows how that works, and is willing to be patient and ride out the storm. (Of course, standing on the prow of the boat and getting slapped in the face by wave after wave is tedious, so he's gonna spend a few in the stateroom, slamming down grog, now).

    I think we have the same thing going on with the priest class. As the competent operators learn more about the specs, we're seeing constant improvement in what we produce with the same basic toolset that we had to start with.


  2. Jessabelle Says:

    @Grimmtooth

    I leveled mine holy/disc as well and don't remember it being painful, and I had already leveled a pally for the most part. I started leveling another priest just for kicks, and I did notice the first ten or so levels sucked, but dont they suck for everyone?

    I like playing around with shadow every now and then, but my heart is in the holy, with a generous dash of disc. Healing Disc is fun. DPSing shadow is fun. But Holy is where I'm centered, and there's no denying that.

    The only thing I don't like about Mind Sear is that it doesn't do damage to the target itself. That irritates the hell out of me. But oh well - I'm a Holy Nova junkie XD

    GC has an amazing amount of patience. Sometimes I wonder if he spends much time outside of the WoW forums reading up on articles from other sources and forums and blogs to see what people think. I imagine he does - limiting oneself solely to the cesspool that are wow forums would drive anyone mad. Hopefully reading up on ideas elsewhere helps him stay sane.

    That and like, sailing around in a yacht with his iPhone, wtf.


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