I am not posting this as a rant, I am posting my point of view as an experienced HK raider that has played a Cleric almost since game release, dipping into every available role to us. I do not intend to insult Trion or players of any calling. Lets keep this a progressive discussion covering all issues, not just dps issues, so it will be easy for the devs to find and read instead of them having to sift through massive amounts of players fighting with each other All callings are welcome to give their opinion, but please no "Clerics shouldn't DPS" one liners, I give my reasons below. Please keep an open mind and read through so you can understand our plight, I explain everything so any calling will understand what I am talking about. Also, I will include a list of acronyms at the bottom so the less experience players can understand what I'm talking about. That being said let us begin.
Clerics are in way worse shape by far than any other calling. We have had no major adjustments since 1.2. Here are the stacking problems we are currently facing that get worse with scaling...
1.Cleric DPS is 30 percent below every other calling (except AOE fights but that is situational because the AOE soul has extremely low ST damage). If someone is filling a DPS spot in a raid it shouldn't depend on what class they are, it should depend on how well geared they are, how good there spec and rotation is, and the skill of the player when it comes to mechanics. That is what this game is based on; different callings filling different roles but doing them just as well as the others so there is flexibility in a party and raid environment. If you just sit there and say "warriors tank, clerics heal, mages dps, rogues support" then you are completely missing the point of the 3 soul system. That paradigm is WoW based (well I guess you could say EQ based or whatever came first), and while it is a valid paradigm it is not the vision that Trion had for this fantastic game.
In a raid environment you have a limited number of spots you can fill. If you aren't beating DPS checks (Sicaron, etc) you are going to drop the class that is giving you the lowest DPS of course, and that is Clerics every time hands down. Clerics are constantly losing raid spots in favor of more DPS because the raid is after all made up of 50 to 60 percent DPS. If you are filling a tank/healing/DPS/support roll, everyone should have an equal chance to do that role just as well. ALSO if you say that clerics shouldn't be able to DPS then you are also saying that Mages shouldn't be able to heal, rogues shouldn't be able to tank, and warriors shouldn't be able to DPS. KEEP THIS IN MIND BEFORE YOU RESPOND. Remember, other callings being the best they can be only HELPS every player involved, don't just say you don't want Clerics to DPS just because you want to be the top. Moreover, why give us FOUR DPS souls if we shouldn't be DPSing in the first place? No other class has a giant sink of useless souls (some more than others) like we do.
2.Clerics are no longer viable in tanking. We already were kind of gimped pre 1.6 but it was still manageable because of physical mitigation despite the abysmal AOE aggro ability. Post 1.6 we are worse off, taking a good 30 percent MORE damage than we were before and having even WORSE AOE threat. I really do not understand how Trion can overlook such a huge mistake. Did you have something different in mind and it just didn't work out? I am really confused about this. The rogues got a significant tanking buff with the addition of deflection and ability changes, but we have just been getting worse and worse to the point of complete unusablity. Maybe they just don't want to spend the time on it because 1.7 is coming and they have big stuff planned? I'm not sure.
Edit: I have recently been informed that a hotfix may have repaired the post 1.6 cleric tanking problems but I haven't actually had the time to test it out myself. If they have GREAT!
3.Itemization is terrible. Before you say "OMG clerics get more drops than every other class" keep in mind that we do not get more Marks and Greater Marks of Ascension than any other class. Sure we can pick up the trash junk but we don't get synergy crystal bonuses while other classes do since they just need to stack 1 set of gear to do all 3 of their roles (I'm looking at you mages ). Not only that, but we have to waste raid dkp more often in HK. Even at minimum bid prices, you start grabbing a bunch of gear so you can actually do all 3 of your roles (weapons, armor, rings, etc) then you are losing way more dkp than other classes which puts you at a major disadvantage when you are trying to win something like the Hexed Belt or Hexed Gloves in HK (for those of you that don't know, every class needs the Hexed items so everyone bids. Clerics are at a major disadvantage here). And that isn't even the main issue with itemization.
The MAIN issue is that the gear we decide to go with is a waste and we can't even heal without 2 separate sets. Let me explain:
-If you want to ST heal you need set 1, the healing gear that has no focus and more spell power
-If you want to AOE heal you need set 2 the DPS gear with focus on it so you can hit the enemy and build convictions (kind of like combo points, each conviction gives us a heal cast). That is 2 DIFFERENT SETS OF GEAR FOR ONE RAID JOB, HEALING. Also, we can't actively switch between AOE healer and ST healer in the middle of a fight like a chloro can either (which I understand, it is part of their utility...but why don't we have any utility? I mean I love having a chloro around because of all the great things they provide to a raid, I want great things too lol)
-If you want to DPS you need set 2, the DPS gear, but even then it is a waste because we are currently at 30 percent below other classes on the DPS scale (Except cab but that is another story).
-If you want to tank you need set 3 the tanking gear (Which of course is completely understandable)
Many people think that combining the healing gear and DPS gear would be a really good idea, and I agree. Very easy to do this, just make focus give the cleric more spell power when healing or something so they can do both jobs with 1 set.
4.We have 3 healing souls yet they don't necessarily do what they are supposed to. Let me explain.
-The MAIN ST healing soul is purifier, a soul with strong shields to protect 1 target at a time even past their max health. This is actually my favorite soul to play but because the shields that the soul provides are solely based on spell power and not spell crit, I can not use this soul since I am stacking DPS gear so I can also AOE heal. Not only that but since Purifier shields don't scale very well with higher lvl content (HK) it becomes less and less viable to use as your gear gets better. For this reason most Clerics tend to take the puri/sent hybrid route for serendipity procs (a proccing buff that makes castable heals take 1.5 seconds less to cast) and higher healing output. Most clerics do not have the healing gear set because they want to fill more than just a ST healing role. I like healing but I do want to change it up a little every once in a while, which is what this game is based on and I think it keeps the game fresh for the players. There is nothing wrong with that .
-The other two souls, warden and sentinel, are labeled as strong AOE healers that can keep a large number of people alive. Warden is supposed to be heal over time based and sentinel is supposed to be burst healing based. These two souls however can not be used for raid healing over a DoL spec (the AOE healing spec that needs the DPS gear to use, the one I mentioned earlier) and here is why: the AOE heals that these two souls have are really low on range/mana efficiency/healing output compared to chloro/DoL heals. For example, the warden group heal over time has a 20 meter range and only hits 5 people, you have to cast it
4 times to hit the whole raid and the healing output is tiny for what it costs/how long it takes to get it out there. The sentinel's main burst aoe heal only has a 15/18 meter range (that's laughable in a raid environment) and costs so much mana that there is no way you can keep using it, especially in a 15/20 minute HK fight. These souls need to be completely reworked so we can stop relying on DPS gear to put out decent AOE heals. Especially considering the amount of utility that a chloro brings to the table (4 min brez, living energy...omg I love living energy...and the ability to switch from ST healer to AOE healer mid fight) I think warden and sentinel should be AOE healing powerhouses in their own right ESPECIALLY because of their lack of utility, making them great to PAIR with chloro making everyone happy.
5.Some people argue that if we give the clerics more DPS or better AOE healing then they will be too OP in PVP or soloing. This is not true. There are many easy ways around making clerics strong in everything at once. For example, give them a buff that increases their DPS by 30 percent but makes it so they can't put out any kind of healing, problem solved. They are in line with the other callings and you don't have to worry about them doing too much healing while DPSing in pvp. Whew, I almost broke a sweat thinking of that one /endsarcasm Trion is very creative and I am sure that their staff can find many ways to balance this easily if they put their mind to it.
I believe the main issue here is that all of the Cleric souls are designed to be for a 5 man T1/T2 dungeon environment and were never really adjusted to be fully usable in raid since it is the hardest class to balance, that is why we have to use jerry rigged DoL specs to AOE heal.
It is my observation that every other class gets constant updates to at least balance them as best they can. Clerics get a hotfix every once in a while that does nothing significant and just leaves us in the dust. Is the Cleric development team perhaps short on developers? Or maybe Trion is just trying to get the other classes in the right place and then balance the clerics to be complementary to all classes. Either way I know Trion is trying their hardest and I am cheering for them. That being said, I am a paying customer that spends hard earned money on something that I really enjoy. I can only voice my opinions on what is wrong for so long until I just feel neglected and unsub and move onto something else.
I really hope a dev can answer me this ONE question. Are the issues I listed above mutually agreed upon at Trion headquarters and is it currently a major project that a development team is working on fixing? A simple yes or no would go a long way in appeasing all of the hate posts that I see every day on the Cleric forums lol.
Even though we pay monthly for service, let us remember that this is for fun and no one is here to make us mad on purpose (I will admit that I used to get mad and rant on the forums to vent steam, but I try very hard not to be that kind of person). Open-minded, respectful, and mutual discussion is what we all need right now and will only help the developers do their job faster. Don't let the ranters get you down, WE ARE HERE WITH YOU DEVS.
Thanks for reading and have a nice day!
DPS-Damage per Second
AOE-Area of Effect
HK-Hammerknell (Current highest level raid)
DKP-Dragon Kill Points (Started in Everquest, is the imaginary currency most guilds use so the players can bid on items with points they earn by attending raids. Prevents one player from getting lucky and winning 6 items in a row on their first raid, which would be unfair to the other veteran players that attend every raid)
Proc-Programmable Random Occurance (This refers to items or abilities that occur randomly while you are using other abilities. For example, the "Sacred Heirloom of the Eth" trinket you get from Deep Strike Mines will activate at certain times as you are healing, how much it actives would be the "proc rate")
DoL-Doctrine of Loyalty (The main AOE healing spell that is based in our tanking tree, but because of healing soul issues we are forced to use it. The Cleric targets enemies and casts light based attacks, every one that hits gives us a Conviction which stacks up to 4. Every conviction allows the use of DoL which is an instant cast burst heal)
PVP-Player vs. Player
PVE-Player vs. Environment