Paladins now have as much CC as a hunter, they have two sacs, two freedoms, two bops, a bubble, a shield wall, a guardian immortality raid heal and the best burst/instant healing in the game.
A paladin can come out of a fear and lay on hands teammates. Shaman mastery is overtuned in pvp situations but atleast it requires you to cast a full spell after CC, not to mention using a global for a riptide if you need tidal waves and an unleash to really burst with the OP mastery if you want/can. Not taking into consideration earthshield insta dispels. In those two globals, you can be CC'd again. And again.
If earth shield was 9 stacks, purges were all 1 per global, tremor gave 6-8 second fear immunity on a 1 minute cooldown. Seems balanced. Your paladin to shaman comparison though, far from realistic.
Actually couldn't disagree with you more. Shamans have by far the best burst healing in the game. Pretty much, hard counter shadow priests and warlocks, and can avoid CC far easier than a paladin can. The reason paladins have such good defensive abilities is exactly because of the aforementioned susceptibility to being ccd. 30 second tremor basically says "ok don't even bother trying to fear him, because the chances of you landing a non dr'd fear on a shaman without trinket is next to none."
totemic restoration is actually a hilarious talent because it's one of those elements in the game that players universally agree is really broken, much like warrior mace-stun was in TBC or Prep Smoke Bomb in Cata; it was never addressed until one expansion later (when WotLK came out and when MoP came out), and I fear that this may happen with totemic restoration
The better question is: "why was this not fixed the first day it was realized it was broken?". If any reasonable PvPer was helping develop/balance this game, things like this would have been addressed 2 or 3 months ago
I remember when armor value mattered. If a warrior wanted to do real pressure they had to 5 stack sunder armor and ask a partner to keep inner fire removed.
I remember when bursting required good timing, kiting, and coordination from team mates. If someone on your team died, you weren't interrupting properly.
I remember in season 1 when every mage switched from pom frost bolt spec to water elemental, and shatter combos were by far the coolest thing in the game.
I remember when librams and totems added a little bit of customization to certain abilities - that was pretty cool.
I remember mounts having a 3 second cast time.
I remember studying Sck's (you newer kids won't know who this is, best paladin to ever play the game) videos for hours every day for weeks to the point where I knew every single global he was going to use, and I knew the lyrics to all of the songs in them.
There are a *few* discs over 2400, yes, but I think it's a pretty big stretch to say "many." Relative to the number of teams out there, disc is virtually nonexistent over 1700. The reason we all know of people like Fuzionn and Porkz--to name just a couple--is that they are exceptional players doing what many of us cannot do given the state of the spec.
I agree with the spirit of your post, however. There *are* people out there making the class work, so if people are having a hard time making it work (including myself) it is because they are not trying hard enough to make a viable team with good people or are just not up to the task.
Actually, every Disc I can think of over 2.4k (maybe even 2.2k?) is running a mongoloid comp built around popping all cooldowns and globalling someone.
I don't think the healer really does much in these comps, but Disc in particular would probably bind every key to Mass Dispel and Dispel, making their fully-cooldowned-opener impossible to peel.
I played some PTR recently.People who think disc is going to be great are in for a surprise. At the start of this expansion they removed almost everything that was good about the spec or nerfed significantly but they added some cool abilities (that did not compensate). Now those new cool abilities such as psyfiend, phantasm, spectral guise , mindbender got nerfed/stealth nerfed so much, I am having hard time finding a reason to play the class. Even though healing is buffed to a level where it is not outrageously bad comparing to other healers anymore like it was the start of the expansion.
Here is what 5.2 priest is: a healer that is as sophisticated as the TBC holy paladin that doesn't have any healing cooldowns, that can occasionally go invisible in arena for 6seconds(while remaining in combat) ,that can mass dispel, that heals less than other healers, that dies faster than other healers.
I don't think you can find a video game to replace WoW if you've played off and on since vanilla and are not a casual. Any other game lasts 2 weeks at most.
The only way I replace WoW is playing on 4 soccer teams irl. If you play multiple sports you've got plans for months ahead it's a much easier transition. Social + competition is a huge lure. Social competition is the reason why human brain size has tripled vs other mammals
And very few video games bring the element of 'helping' your team mates via peels/cc/dps and the spacial awareness required for where your team mates are and what range their abilities can be used within. There is no game as complex as 3v3 arena unless it's a solo/singleplayer game
I can think of a few games that may be as complex but they are unpopular, which is the main problem