How much do people actually care about their Earth Shield level? Is anyone, short of high-end raids, actually going to not take you based on an Earth Shield level?
I've mained a priest and been in parties with sorcs and never really cared about having a <20% earth shield. I usually just love them for their LoR spam. Other buffs like agi/int though, I love seeing maxed. Now I'm making a sorc (hybrid) and I'm always just a few points short, no matter how I try to build it. Those extra 4 points in Earth Shield seem the most sacrifice-able in favor of maxing other skills like Deluge, LoR and Earth Seal.
I'm trying to build hybrid for ease of soloing and a little dabbling in colosseum, but I'm not going to sacrifice party skills for pvp skills.