It's been a couple weeks since my last post and Blizzard has implemented quite a few changes to the Retribution Paladin with the latest patch. With all the changes I decided to change up my spec a bit. I went with a more PvP spec and added the support talents. This has done a couple of things for me:
1. I can throw heals to my partner and they hit harder, have chance to not use Holy Power and give me a buff if I use WoG. (Due to Divinity, Eternal Glory and Selfless Healer)
2. I can heal my self and the heals hit harder and have chance to not use Holy Power.
3. My HoJ has a shorter cool-down. (Due to Improved Hammer of Justice)
Also I have gotten a couple upgrades to my PvP kit:
Upgrades in PvP always mean more damage (if your a damage dealer) and more survivability.
With our new Mastery the added damage was significant. Against a training dummy in my PvP gear I saw a 30% increase. This was with the same gear, the same rotation and reforging into mastery and out of crit/haste.
The Sacred Shield addition was a definite gain to our survivability. How can you complain about a ~25K shield every 30 seconds while below 30% health?
Now lets talk about the Crusader Strike nerf. I know what your thinking they buffed the damage output of it. This is true. But, the main reason CS is one of our top priority abilities is not for its damage. It is now our only source of Holy Power. Before the patch CS awarded holy power on cast. Now it awards on hit. The difference is that since the majority of PvP players ignore expertise when we face someone who has a ton of dodge we a don't land many of our CS's. If we don't land a lot of our CS's we get less Holy Power. No Holy Power no WoG and no TV's. One of the blue posters on the official forums tried to say that this was a bug fix. This is not the case. Ghostcrawler stated specifically that CS generating HoPo on cast was by design. For raiding retribution paladins this should not cause much issue since they are usually expertise soft capped. The main problem is the delays we will be seeing from the slowing of holy power generation. For other classes that have attacks that do not land the resource that was used is refunded (at least partially refunded). Since the resource that retribution and protection paladins use is cool downs then my recomendation would be to reset the cooldown on the CS. My personal opinion is that this was a serious nerf.
All in all I feel the patch was a net gain for retribution paladins. Definitely could have been better without the CS nerf but we can't have everything.