Note - these are PTR notes and who knows how they'll change between now and live.
Right now I'm going to focus on some of the Holy Paladin changes, a few cross spec changes, and then look at how this will dovetail with the other healers in the raid.
Beacon of Light: The healing amount on the Beacon of Light target is now based on the total healing done (including over-healing) instead of the effective healing done. Radius increased to 60 yards. Multiple Paladins can now have this active on the same target. Buff indicating a player is within range of the Beacon target is no longer displayed.
This. Is. Huge. This is a definate boon for leveling paladins who are trying to heal through their first dungeons/heroics, as well as to raiding paladins. It really sucks when your heal target is topped off by someone else, and the healing that needs to hit your beaconed target is wasted - leaving you further behind. While HL spam is going to take a hit, when you couple this change with the HL glyph and the changes to JoL, we've got some nice raid healing going on.
Divine Intellect: This talent now gives 2/4/6/8/10% increased intellect instead of 3/6/9/12/15%.
This is going to hurt some. With the way it scales with BoK, we're going to lose a nice chunk of mana/crit/SP, and there's no way to look at this other than a straight nerf. I'm not excited about it, but it's not the end of the world either. My only concern is that with the nerf to Illumination and to Replenishment, that this will be a double hit and may be too much. The sky isn't falling yet though.
Illumination: This talent now returns 30% of the mana cost of the spell instead of 60%.
Ugh. While I wasn't healing on my paladin (heck, I didn't even have one back then) when the first Illumination nerf came out - I can't say I'm surprised by this. One of my first blog posts was about how mp5 was going to make a comeback, and this is one way to force it on us.
With this change - assuming no Glyph of the Wise, 4pc 7.5, or Libram - our HL will now cost us 892 mana per crit (715 per crit with the above) - up from 333. This change, coupled with the change to SS and FoL (below) is an obvious push for us to use HL as the big nuke it was in BC, with FoL becoming our go to heal.
Sacred Shield: When a paladin casts Flash of Light on a target with this buff, they also now place a heal-over-time effect on the target, healing that target for 100% of the Flash of Light amount over 12 seconds.
I love this change. I've already started going to a FoL/HS setup as my off-spec, using a 51/20 build and the 4pc T8. This change will allow me to Beacon/SS the MT, tap the raid around me, and then put a FoL HoT on the MT again every few seconds. Running Glyph of Light, Glyph of Holy Shock, and Glyph of Flash of Light should see some good returns.
Lay on Hands: The buff from this ability now reduces the physical damage taken by the target by 10/20% instead of increasing the target's armor.
Basically another HoS use, though probably not on every attempt given the 11 min (talented and glyphed) CD.
Judgement of Light: Now heals for 2% of the attacker's maximum health instead of a variable amount based on the spell power and attack power of the judging paladin.
This is a total red-herring, I actually laughed when I did the math on this. All I see across the forums is how OP this will be, when in reality it's a straight nerf to Ret/Prot paladins. Right now it's better for Retadins to apply JoL since it will tick for about double what a Holy paladin's will (8-900 vs 3-400). All this does is bring it in line with what Holy Paladins are getting, and keeps it from running out of control as Retadins get more AP/SP with gear.
Nerfed from .025%/sec to 1%/5sec. This falls in line with the desire to add a straight mp5 buff, though it's still an overall 20% nerf to the talent. From the looks of things, many classes/builds are getting some other form of mana return to balance this out. I won't stand up and say this is aimed at Holy Paladins directly, but it kind of feels like it. Again, we'll have to see - and again, it may be a double whack with the change to Divine Intellect.
The writing was on the wall for this one - though I don't think it will be enough for us. All mp5 on gear will be increased by 25%. Woohoo! Now the 19mp5 on my gloves is almost 24! Look out baby...
Potion Injectors now increase the amount gained by 25% when used by engineers. Quantity produced by recipes for Runic Healing and Mana Injectors has been increased.
I'm sure it won't, but it'd be pretty amazing if this stacked with an Alchemist's stone.
So what do I think?
I think these changes might be a little over the top, but I have faith (yeah, I know) that they'll be pulled in line by the time the PTR goes live, or at least they'll be tweaked fairly soon.
One thing is that I'm already healing the way they seem to want us to - running a high FoL/HS rotation as opposed to pure HL dumping (when I can). This seems to work best when there's two Healadins on one target. I guess you can say I'm skeptical, but I'm not burning GC in effigy yet.