I've posted this in another thread, but I wanted to reiterate that I don't think well-designed dice-rolling games should incorporate 'I win' buttons. Such buttons include Guarded by the Force, Force Barrier, Resilience, and Saber Reflect. Such abilities are the reason I quit pvp. I am baffled as to why Bioware released two ridiculous cooldowns (Saber Reflect and Force Barrier) in 2.0, and Saber Reflect of all things incorporates a
- 1 minute cooldown
- damage immunityof all types except melee, with melee of course being the most basic type of damage in the game and therefore typically easily mitigatable and low-damage
- damage reflection
- AOE threat on a huge radius and no target cap
Let's look specifically at its intention in design, the niche this ability fills. I get that each tank class needs some trash-clearing utility; Vanguards get neural surge (hard AOE stun 2.5 seconds, 45 sec cooldown) and smoke grenade. Guardians get Awe (8 sec AOE stun, breaks on damage, 60 sec cooldown), their damage reduction from AOE taunt, and now the aforementioned Saber Reflect. Shadows get Resilience and stealth cc, and their Force Wave and Spike give functionality that is kinda like Awe/Neural Surge, but of course much worse.
You already knew that Guardians have steady damage mitigation (cf Shadows, who have a 50% chance to drop dead every time if they initiate combat on trash), close to immediate in-combat proc buildup(oh god i have to click Bladestorm AND Rebuke???; cf 3 stacks Energy Blast, 3xHS TKT), and Awe, which is a decent trash-clearing cooldown. You also knew that in PVE bossfights, the attack is typically used to absorb one major attack, so its effectiveness could have been similar in PVE bossfights if it was 'next attack reflected' rather than 'all attacks for 3 sec' and its utility could have been good on trash (basically still an easy mode AOE taunt, a bit of damage reduction and damage redirection too). You already knew that Guardians had the best suite of defensive cooldowns.
So what purpose does this serve, other than to indulge the childish desires of an immature game designer?
What urgent need does Saber Reflect satisfy? And furthermore, how did this go live? Sure, maybe -one guy- designs all your class balance. I'm clearly not a fan of that idea, but I can deal with it. But how did this get released? Surely someone must have noticed that this wretched ability was going live and said "hey is this a typo? it should be on a 10 minute cooldown right?"
Maybe if you had given Saber Reflect to Shadows and given it a 10 minute cooldown I could see an argument for it being balanced. I'd still disagree about its balance immediately on the grounds that it's still an 'I win' button, but at least if I heard someone argue that it was balanced I wouldn't think they're a gibbering idiot.