As briefly touched on in Part 3, many cleric players dislike their lack of attack variety. While clerics do know many CS-based spells, players tended to dismiss the majority of them as not worthwhile for reasons I’ll highlight in this section. There was also discussion about bolting, but most of that will be reserved for its own specific page in Part 5.
CS Spells – Disablers
Players reported rarely using clerics’ disablers. In fact, aside from the top four most used disablers–301 Prayer of Holding, 316 Censure, 214 Bind, and 201 Calm–every option had as many or more respondents saying they never use the spell as respondents saying that they use it even so much as rarely.
As for why that is, most disablers were challenged by multiple players on at least one of the following points:
Below is a representative sampling of comments.
I wish there was something useful beyond 316. I like 316 for sure […] the 150+ warding margin result at least. The stun only part leaves something to be desired. The 100/200 spells usually aren’t powerful/useful enough IMO.
[…] too many disablers that are shaken off too fast. 311 and 316 are duplicative and neither is that good against high level creatures. It’s easier to just attack to try to kill since one blast of 917 or similar kills me anyway.
[…] my sorcerer uses so little mana I can feed some to my cleric to extend hunts. […] I have my sorc use grasp of the grave or corrupt essence because they’re much superior options [to cleric spells] for disabling.
The cleric CS vs creature TD just does not allow for good use of the 100’s and 200’s CS spells. […] 210 is an amazing spell that I wish I could bump its CS up but cleric circle needs to be as high as possible.
The 200s circle is a mix of suck and awesome at cap, in my experience.
We have way too many [disablers] available but I only ever need 301
I often use 302 to disable living critters before bolting because it costs so much less then 214
[regarding upsides of the player deciding to 1x Religion lore] Blind might look way cooler the 3 times a year I cast it!
I’ll reiterate that that’s only a sample; people talked a lot about disablers since the questions did specifically ask about them. We’ll close this section out with three last comments, taking different stances or going into more detail than most:
100s and 200s disablers are a waste of space after level 40 because its impossible to have a good enough CS in those circles without sacrificing the 300s. Critters have virtually the same TD against all 3 circles, but the 300s are designed to be the most powerful, which makes the 100s and 200s CS spells worthless […] Sub 40 I used a much wider range of spells, but its virtually nothing but 301 (on the THW build) and 302 (on the warder build) since.
[response to a different question:] Disablers are far too expensive to use and unlikely to work. A 2 mana attack spell that autowards is not helped by a 15 mana disabler with a 35% failure chance.
[regarding the idea of new cleric spell additions] Clerics have plenty of reliable, warding-based single target and mass disablers and most definitely do not need any more. I would not want any cleric circle disablers removed, however, as they all have specific uses.
I don’t see the point of so many disablers. 90% of the time, I use them during rescues, group hunts to tag but not kill a creature, or to just make life easier for some newb who’s hunting. The rest of the time, I’m casting calm on things I don’t care about fighting simply because it costs 1 mana and has a ridiculously long 5 seconds per warding failure duration.
Beyond that, the time and mana costs of disablers rarely seem worth it when I can just… attack something instead. (See also: 98% of offensive combat maneuvers for squares/semis.)
CS Spells – AoE Attacks
The satisfaction ratings for 335 Divine Wrath were almost an even split, as seen before in Part 3. However, players reported rarely using it. (Note that the question they were responding to included an option of being too low level to say, not shown here in the results.)
How do you use the following offensive CS spells?
Additionally, among those who took time to mention Divine Wrath in their comments, feedback was near-universally negative. Here are some examples:
335… the mana cost just isn’t worth the damage it can do, and it takes too long to ramp up. There may be some niche uses, but most of the time I pretend it isn’t there.
What else am I going to use besides ball spells to hit more than one target at once? 335? 135? Sneeze on them? (They’re all terrible options.)
Please get rid of the build-up time on 335. I like the spell, but it’s never practical to use. And I don’t wanna hear about “well just cast other spells while it builds up”. I shouldn’t have to do that for a level 35 spell!
I’ve started to use 335 more. The big problem is something like Reim/Bandits. It’ll all be dead before 335 fires, and 316 gets you credit but no XP. So I resort to 111’ing everything and relying on the splash damage to get credit, and just keep rotating 111 targets.
I think the cleric profession is in a good place overall. The weakness of younger clerics with the limitations of smite/bane would probably be a concern, but not so much at or post-cap. One of the biggest setbacks for clerics I think is the lack of an instant mass attack for events like Reim, Night at the Academy, Bandits, etc.
I no longer play my cleric because so often I’d find myself with 2 or 3 mobs in a room and feel underpowered. Especially as he hunted with my wizard. Even with +21 in cleric and 2x SA I never felt like I had any decent options to quickly kill things. So many things have high TD against cleric spells that I’d more often use bolts but 306 and 111 just don’t compare when you have a wizard 518ing or core tapping next to you.
Suggestions on Swarms
A couple of players offered suggestions for adding to clerics’ anti-swarm capabilities with new spells or updates to existing ones. Each player split their suggestions across answers to multiple questions, so I’ve put them together into composites below:
I would like to see three things added/improved for the cleric profession. A viable physical AS, a better AOE spell (335 needs to not be so slow and restrictive), and an AOE maneuver based spell (e.g. Ewave). 316 is very handy, but […] with high cleric based TD of critters [and] immense amount of training points in CS (spell training) to try to overcome this, [there are] much less points available for lores and other ancillary training. […] Add a lore benefit to lower 316 immobilize roll below 150+
Solo hunting swarms… it’s doable as a cleric, but from my experience extremely dangerous and more often than not you just end up burning mana trying to escape to a more controlled environment before you’re overwhelmed.
[…] There are many “neat” things a cleric can already do that I think are grossly underused. Brimstone gems, for instance, sound neat in theory and could have a profound effect in high swarm instances such as warcamps, invasions, and other swarmy hunts like SoS.. but seem to fall short once thou actually lobbest thy holy hand grenade.
The end doesn’t seem to justify the means. If it were more devastating, or released a more prolonged and debilitating status effect in exchange for something like.. a cooldown period, it could turn out to be an incredibly effective tool for crowd control and/or quick escape from a bad situation.
[…] why not something like the Paladin’s Divine Incarnation? The cleric should be able to fully harness the aspect of their deity, become a true avatar of the god and force opponents to submit to the will of the divine in a less attack/defense based manner. Complete submission (kneeled/proned, calmed, stunned, forced offensive) of a group of opponents, drawing life and mana from opponents while distributing it to the cleric and/or cleric’s group, causing a room of critters to start attacking each other, or even instantly vaporizing a room of hostiles Ark of the Covenant style. The possibilities are profound.
Part 4: Disablers and AoE Spells