What is a Paladin?

Buy WoW Gold Cheap

  • Buy WoW Gold Classic Paypal at Mulefactory. WoW Classic Coupon: wowcgold & WoW Gold Coupon: wowrgold. Payments: Paypal, Skrill, Bitcoin.

Simple question that one - what is a Paladin? The answer is not so simple, and will vary depending on who you ask. Some see the paladin as a holy warrior, skilled in combat with the ability to protect themself and others with healing when necessary. Others will be focused on that healing part and see the class as a protector whose prime role is to keep others alive. This question causes a lot of unrest amongst the paladin community, with many claiming blizzard made a broken class who are nothing like paladins in other games and need fixing. Now you may ask what my view is, and the answer is simple: we are whatever we want to be. I’m not interested in what a ‘paladin’ in some game 10 years ago could do. I look at paladins as they have been made in World of Warcraft, and that is as a hybrid class. We can be that warrior with heals. We can be the healer, the protector. In fact, I would say paladin is the most complete class in the game.

To be more specific, there are three commonly accepted roles within the game. Those three roles are DPS, Tanking and Healing. As a hybrid class, a paladin is capable of performing each role. Now obviously being able to perform each role gets us labelled with the old saying “Jack of all trades, master of none” and to some extent this is true. A rogue, mage or warlock for example would be considered better for DPS than a paladin. A warrior is the recognised tanking class in the game. For healing, priests and even druids are seen as better. So why would anyone want to be a paladin, if we’re always inferior to other classes in whatever role we play? My answer to that is again simple: we are versatile. Most other classes have a very fixed role, and rely on others in different roles to create a balance. A paladin can step into any role that is required, and thus maintain equalibrium within a group. In essence, I see our role as adapting to any situation we are thrown into and using our versatility to adapt and ensure everything goes as smoothly as possible. Now please note that I am not stating we are purely a support class - on the contrary, I view paladins as being excellent on our own too. I’m simply saying that while other classes can be very fixed in what they do, we can do many things and that is what I love about the class.

If you ask most people what a paladin does in groups they’ll say “cleanse, buff and heal”. Mention damage and they’ll laugh. Here’s a brief overview of what I view a paladin as doing in different environments.

5-man Raids

This is one place a paladin excels with our versatility. Your typical 5-man group has a Tank, Healer, Crowd Control, DPS and Random. Our best role in that mix is the Random slot, as then we can react to anything that comes up and add dps when things are secure, off-tank if a big pull needs that or if there’s a 2 “boss” fight (eg. BRD emperor/princess and DM Tribute king/observer) and support the healer with our own healing if required. Although that’s our best role, and my personal favourite, we are also easily capable of performing as the main tank for a group or as the healer. There is no 5-man instance in the game that a paladin cannot tank, and the same for healing. People prefer having a warrior as tank or a priest to heal and sure, if they’re available it’s perfectly reasonable for them to do that and we slot into the random/versatile role. Our best role is in that non-specific slot that allows us to keep an eye on the group and do whatever is needed at any given time but we can also perform the main tank or main healer roles, and that makes us a great addition to any group. In fact, if there’s a dps specced warrior in the group I’ll often do the tanking so they can dps, and the same if there’s a shadow priest. The problem of course is that most people insist a paladin can’t main tank or be the group healer, if you try to join pugs (pickup groups) for one of those roles. If you’re with people who know you, however, they’ll know you can do it and let you.

20-40 Man Raids

The end-game raids from ZG onwards, here’s where paladins get labelled as buffbots, cleansebots and healbots. We go from being told we’re not healers in places like strat/scholo to now told that healing is all we’re can do. If you mention the word damage, you get laughed at. Well, while I agree that healing and cleansing is an important role for us I am very open to paladins in damage mode. Let’s look at what a raid consists of: first you have the main tank and a few off-tanks, then there’s the dps and finally the healers. For a raid to succeed, the tanks (and dps) need to stay alive so sufficient healing is required. While priests and druids will be the primary healers, paladins will usually find they need to heal too to cover the whole raid. Let’s say there’s a MC raid with 4 priests, 2 healing druids and 6 paladins. If just the priests and druids healed, that wouldn’t be enough so at least some of the paladins would need to be in full healing mode. Taking MC as an example again, heavy cleansing is required for Sulfuron. With the priests/druids dedicated to keeping tanks alive, paladins need to keep the nasty things off the raid through cleansing, and provide backup healing. It’s a simple fact that sufficient healing is required for a raid to succeeed and as one of three healing classes we must be prepared to fill that role when necessary, which unless the raid is heavy with other healers will be often. When it comes to end-game raids, a paladin is primarily a healer and a cleanser out of necessity.

Now you may be thinking that I’ve just confirmed what people say, that all we can do is heal & cleanse. Not at all. I agree that healing and cleansing are two important roles we will usually have to perform, but in no way do I accept that they’re all we can do. Damage paladins are laughed at, but sometimes in a raid that’s the best option. While a raid needs enough healing to work, there is such a thing as too much healing. If a raid is heavy with other healers with more than is really necessary, it can be better for a couple of paladins to whip out their big weapons and go in damage mode - better to add damage than to stand at the back doing nothing most of the time. The argument people make here is that instead of letting paladins go in damage mode it would be better to take extra rogues or mages instead. As far as I’m concerned, when given the chance to prove it a paladin can definitely hold their own when it comes to dps. Sure, we’re not likely to be topping meters but we can certainly mix in there with most of them, often out-damaging some and certainly not lagging far behind. With the right gear, and a spec to help with it, a paladin in pure damage mode can put out more than enough damage to warrant them being in theraid instead of yet another rogue. What often happens to pull a paladin down on the meter is that in cleanse-heavy fights they’ll help cleanse, and in bad pulls when a rogue will just keep adding dps the dps paladin might step back and help with a few heals. A rogue will do damage 100% of the time they’re in active play. A paladin probably won’t, even in full dps mode. While that will give a rogue an advantage with damage meters, it does not mean the paladin sucks at dps… simply that there are times when we’ll support heal/cleanse for a bit instead of standing there swinging away. A paladin might also do damage in most fights, but do pure healing in those that need extra healing - that doesn’t mean they can’t do high damage when they are trying to. That omnipresent versatility is why, if healing is secure without them, I am perfectly happy to see extra paladins in a damage role as they can a) dish out plenty of damage to keep in touch with other DPS’ers - won’t top the meters (a good mage/rogue etc. will be higher), but won’t necessarily be at the bottom of them either - and b) if the sh*t hits the fan, step back a bit and support heal/cleanse. The other thing with raids is even rarer than dps, and that’s tanking. While a place like Scholo or Dire Maul we can tank without problems, for a paladin to main tank in an end-game raid is very difficult indeed. For one thing, we lack the extra threat abilities that a good warrior (or druid) tank has and will use. Second, we have no means of snap-aggro (ie. taunt) to regain control if aggro is lost, and finally even if we can hold aggro, none of our higher tier sets have tanking stats on them other than stamina - we have no Defence on them, and set bonuses are for damage/healing rather than tanking like a warrior’s set gives. Ultimately we were never meant to be more than secondary backup tanks. We have the ability to tank as well as a warrior in smaller 5-man instances, but in end game the warrior is clearly set out as “the” tank and has both the talents/abilities and the gear to support that. A paladin has limited threat generation abilities, and as we move up through the higher raids we can only collect tanking items close to what a warrior has access to by picking up a few random non-set pieces if the opportunity presents itself. While there are cases of paladins tanking Onyxia or MC that’s when guilds have them on farm status, want to have a bit of fun and experiment a bit - often when they’re taking alts through to be geared up. It’s certainly far from optimal - if a raid MT is needed, it will be a warrior or even a druid and not a paladin. What we can do is off-tank if necessary. If you look at the Garr fight with 8 adds, if the raid is short of warriors/warlocks a paladin can easily tank an add. The same with adds at Sulfuron/Domo. We can collect gear ready to off-tank when needed, but don’t create a paladin thinking you’ll be able to MT end-game as that simply won’t happen.

So that’s end-game for us. Mostly healing and cleansing, the ability to perform a damage role if we’re not needed for healing and we can off-tank adds if necessary. To fit that, a paladin looking to raid should focus on building healing gear first, damage gear second and tanking gear third. It should also be a consideration when assigning talent points.

Group PvP

Whether in a BG like Arathi Basin or world PvP with a group, a paladin has a very important role to play when PvPing with others. Some paladins will play like warriors and only heal themselves, refusing to heal others, because they feel they’re entitled to play for themselves as much as any other class. To me that’s a load of rubbish. What’s the point of hacking away with your sword and keeping full mana if the mage next to you is stunned and about to be killed by a couple of rogues? They’d just turn on you next. A true paladin should always be watching out for others. That’s not just with healing, but also tools like Blessing of Protection - you can BoP that mage and the rogues can’t do anything to hurt him, while you then quickly heal him back up. We can save our stun for classes like a shaman who’s just about to heal, put buffs on others. We melee when we can, and be ready to heal when we need to. Group PvP is all about teamwork, and a paladin should always know what’s going on around you to be ready to react in whichever way is needed. It’s much the same as that flexible/versatile role in instances and raids… we don’t just do one thing, we change our actions depending on what each fight needs.

One major strength we have in PvP is our survivability - in AB we make excellent flag defenders, able to survive under attack longer than any other class to protect the flag until help arrives. If we’re performing a healing role, we have the armour and shield to hold off melee that turn on us while we continue to heal, and the bubble.

  • General Macros
  • Healing Macros
  • Tanking Macros
  • Tips
  • Spells
  • Protection Talents Builds
  • Retribution Talents Builds
  • Holy Talents Builds
  • Basic Partying Strategies
  • Level Paladin Quests
  • Attributes & Stats
  • Auras
  • Blessings
  • Seal of Righteousness
  • Healing Techniques
  • Tanking Techniques
  • PvP Techniques
  • Class Armour Sets
  • Enchants
  • wowgold tips:
  • Guides
  • Basic Information
  • Solo PVE Technique
  • Group PVE Technique
  • One-on-One PVP Technique
  • Abilities and Talents
  • Healing Gear
  • Tanking Gear
  • Background
  • Weaknesses
  • Strategies
  • PvE Tanking Build
  • Retribution Leveling
  • Holy Talent Guide
  • Protection Talent Guide
  • Retribution Talent Guide
  • Tanking Damage Guides
  • Silvalor's Compendium of Blessings
  • What Do Paladins Need?
  • Basic Leveling/soloing Strategies
  • What is a Paladin?
  • Strategies
  • Dungeons | FAQ | The Burning Crusade | Warcraft Lore | Macros | WoW Tactics | Karazhan Guide