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Tanking as a Paladin
As a Paladin tank, the most viable talent tree is obviously Protection. High armor and damage medigation as well as high blocking is the KEY to Paladin tanking survival and aggro control. In the Protection tree you will find Improved Devotion Aura, Redoubt, Sheild Specialization, Blessing of Sanctuary and Toughness. These are the talents that will keep you alive and give your healers a easier time. Anticipation is not as useful because plus Defense skill to a Paladin hurts our ability to control aggro. This will be explained later.
As a Paladin you want to maximize your chance to block and your armor medigation. This means high end armor values on everything including a Shield and a lot of str and stm as str increases how much damage you block and stm makes up for the crits you will be forced to take as a trade off for less Defense in order to maintain aggro.
As for aggro control, Paladins hold aggro through Holy Damage. Defense, to a Paladin, at high values hurts our efforts to tank more than helps because though it makes us unable to be critted, also raises Dodge and Parry making us take less hits and less blocking. On high aggro fights, Paladins use Retribuion Aura to maximize holy damage output in a steady stream and the more defense you have, the less holy damage Ret Aura will generate.
Also, the more dodge and parry means less block which means the less chance of Blessing of Sanctuary to come into play which also reduces Holy Damage. The effect of Holy Shield will also be reduced which is another huge factor in Paladin damage medigation and aggro generation.
One other very important skill is Precision. More chance to hit means more chance to apply holy damage, as neither SoC nor SoR applys on misses. Most Paladins prefer SoC for the burst Holy Damage, however, SoR is a better choice for tanking both because it has a steady holy damage value every hit AND it has a harder hitting judgement that benefits more from spell damage than the judgement for SoC which makes up for a Paladin's lack of a Taunt. Proper use of BoP also makes up for our lack of Taunts, especially if you've speced into Guardian's Favor for a quicker cooldown.
Other talents that are important are Divine Intellect for long term tanking, Improved Righteous Fury (that's a given right?), Benediction for mana conservation, Improved Judgements, Improved Seal of Righteousness, and Improved Seal of the Crusader. To a lesser extent, Consecration is also important, however, it is a huge mana sink and should only be used when tanking multiple targets in a none Crowd Control situation. Improved Retribution aura might also be beneficial but don't put points into it if it takes away from other important talents.
Important armor attirbutes for a Paladin tank include +spell damage, +intellect, +stamina, +mana/5, HIGH ARMOR VALUE, and HIGH BLOCKING, don't use more than +25 Defense as after that the effect for reduceing Crit change becomes reduced and it will increase chance to Dodge to a precentage that will harm your aggro generation.
As with all roles in the game for Hybrids, a Paladin tank requires the proper gear as well as the talents and the attention to do what is necessary. Consistant judgeing, attention to aggro meters, proper use of BoP and attention to your mana bar are all important aspects that relates more to the skill of the player than the condition of his character. A Paladin tank is a hard role to play, but if done right with the right gear and talent, they can be very successful.
For attack power for Paladins 14 attack power = 1 DPS. So assuming using SoC. So if the max damage of your weapon is 400 at 2.00 speed (4 attacks over 8 seconds) and assuming you're always swinging at max damage if you add 100 attack power your max damage per swing would be 400 + (100 / 14) * 2 = 414.29
Your normal SoC hit is 70% of your weapon damage BEFORE ARMOR MEDIGATION IS APPLIED. Your normal SoC rank 5 judgement is 105 - 116 spell damage with a Coefficient of 43% assuming no stuns. Now assuming max damage here's what you will have over the period of 8 seconds assuming the same 50% proc rate and 50% armor medigation and 1 judgement.
.7 * 414.29 * 2 + 414.29 * .5 * 4 + 116 = 1524.59 or 190.57 DPS
For Spell damage the coefficients for SoC is 20% and for its Judgement it's 43%. Again, assuming max damage here's what you will have over the period of 8 seconds assuming the same 50% proc rate and 50% armor medigation and 1 judgement.
.7 * 400 * 2 + 100 * .2 * 2 + 400 * .5 * 4 + 116 + .43 * 100 = 1559 or 194.88
As you can see, spell damage vs Attack power point for point, spell damage is the better choice. If we add a crit to it, the statistics mostly remain the same.
Paladins crit for 175% of normal damage. So, for example, if you have the same calculations as above. 400 top damage weapon with 2.00 swing speed, 2 SoC Procs and 1 judgement within 8 seconds of combat, what would happen if you have +1% melee crit or +1% spell crit?
Assuming this is damage over a long period of time where the +1% will come into play at some point or another each white damage will be boosted by .01 * 1.75 * white damage to compensate for the crit. Same thing will be done for the holy damage, .01 * 1.75 * holy damage to compensate for the spell crit. Taking the previous calculations, here's what you will find. Keep in mind that melee is effected by armor medigation of 50% damage reduction.
Melee Crit + 100 Attack Power
(.7 * 414.29 * 2) + (414.29 * .5 * 4) + (414.29 * .5 * 4 * .01 * 1.75) + (116) = 1539.09 or 192.39 DPS
Spell Crit + 100 Spell Power
(.7 * 400 * 2 + 100 * .2 * 2) + ((.7 * 400 * 2 + 100 * .2 * 2) * .01 * 1.75) + (400 * .5 * 4) + (116 + .43 * 100) + ((116 + .43 * 100) * .01 * 1.75) = 1572.28 or 196.54 DPS
As you can see, spell damage and spell crit is far better for a Paladin's DPS than attack power and melee crit.
Sorry, to bore you all with the math, but here's what it all comes down to. The most important thing for a Paladin is the weapon. The weapon has to be big, with a huge high end damage. The bigger the better. HOWEVER, the ARMOR and the ACCESSORIES, should focus more on spell damage than on attack power, more on spell crit than attack crit, to maximize your damage.
DO NOT sacrifice a heavy damage weapon for a weapon with spell power UNLESS you are fighting against something with 70% armor medigation or greater (prot warrior) at which point even a 2h weapon will not surpase a 1h weapon with spell damage.