Cooldowns were recently changed to recharge while you’re dead as we had felt it was too punishing as well, due to a bug this wasn’t the case in the alpha build however.
Giving you all your abilities back can have some negative effects particularly in game modes like CTF where in certain maps you spawn very close to the enemies capture point.
The alchemancer for example has a barrage ability, deals very heavy aoe damage over time with a long cooldown. If it’s reset every spawn in the worst case scenario you could see a new one 3 times as often as we intended with the cooldown.
When this is fixed it should feel a lot better so keep an eye on this in the future and let us know if it still feels too punishing.
Just to mention that if that’s what’s happening, then that Alchemancer is essentially dead for most of that time, too, which can be very debilitating to a defending team, even if they get some big abilities out of it more often (also the Alchemancer leaves behind a healing/cd reduction orb each time he dies).
Also, if an ability is so useful that casting it more is more useful than staying alive and helping your team, then maybe the ability is a bit too strong?
Edit: Oh hey, or here’s a solution, and you might apply this to other abilities as well: abilities that scale with charges. You know how Vypress can have three shurikens if she waits long enough? How about this: Barrage has two or three scaling tiers of damage, but the Alchemancer revives with the skill at the lowest tier. He can decide to use it right out of spawn for some damage, or he can wait the 20 or so seconds to get the (+) and cast the skill with more power, which would also be more decisive in a fight. Also, the cooldown could be asymmetrically scaled, so the first tier might take 25 seconds while the second tier takes 20 seconds more after that. I probably wouldn’t use this on too many abilities, since it’ll require different animations/effects to telegraph which effect is taking place, but it could help against respawn abuse for certain abilities, and it adds some more depth to those abilities.