Back in June (Wow, seriously? Tempus fugit, I suppose.) I shared my thoughts on some of the changes coming in patch 5.4. As is typical for me when it comes to change, I was a bit harsh in some of my pre-judgments and, now that we are well into the newest content Blizzard has to offer, I'd like to revisit a few of those points.
Inquisition's longer duration
Boy, was I wrong. It took some getting used to at first, for as Inquisition's duration doubled the WeakAura bar that I used to track it remained the same, resulting in far too many early refreshes than I care to admit. But after the honeymoon I had settled into our new relationship pretty well. It may only be an additional 30 seconds, but it did wonders for setting my mind at ease when I went to refresh it.
I still wonder if this is where the devs will stop with it, or if they'll eventually make it passive or allow other abilities to extend its duration (essentially making it passive anyway). I would like to think that Blizzard has learned a great deal from how much tanks are enjoying active mitigation and realize that, on the whole, "active" is fun whereas "passive" is not.
Guardian of Ancient Kings' cooldown reduction
Now that the dust has settled though I'm fairly indifferent about the change. While it's nice to be hitting more cooldowns, my original concern that the ability wouldn't be able to support its own weight remains valid. I haven't done it quite yet, but macroing Avenging Wrath together with Guardian of Ancient Kings seems to be path of least resistance for the near future, if you plan on speccing into Sanctified Wrath that is.
This is all a bit sad as it seems like Blizzard wants to make Guardian of Ancient Kings a very iconic ability for paladins, but in the grand scheme of things (at least for ret) it can't live up to the majesty of its spell effects.
From my experiences thus far it appears to do alright for a small number of targets. Divine Purpose combined with the procs from the four-piece create a very satisfying RNG jackpot effect, the screen lighting up with golden notifications and your character blinded by the light of a thousand hammers orbiting around her.
Where the bonus truly shines is in multi-target environments, as I had expected when I first read the tooltip. What I did not expect, however, was how exhausting it can be cackling maniacally to myself as proc lead to proc and my enemies crumpled before the might of my divine tempest.
Overall, Siege of Orgrimmar is a very melee-friendly instance. I can count on one of Bart Simpson's hands how many fights are actually tough on melee, all of which are only classified as such due to the abundance of deadly ground effects on each encounter.
The remainder of the instance is fairly plain, I'm sad to report. Most fights amount to "sit in the hit box and make good numbers", and what doesn't immediately live up to that archetype eventually reaches it anyway before the end of the encounter. The Proving Ground-esque portion of Norushen is clearly meant to introduce a little flavor to the fight, but it fails to push the personal responsibility angle as much as the "connect the dots" phase from Twin Consorts did. Paragons of the Klaxxi is a messy amalgam of target switching and burst DPS. Even Garrosh Hellscream doesn't quite live up to final bosses past like Lei Shen or even Sha of Fear, despite some entertaining phase transitions.
But don't let my curmudgeonly descriptions ruin your fun if you're enjoying the instance so far. There are certainly some good moments in the raid, and as we delve deeper into its heroic encounters I'm sure I'll be changing my tune in no time.
The Light and How to Swing It teaches you the ins and outs of retribution paladins, from Ret 101 and how to gem, enchant and reforge your retadin, to essential ret pally addons.