Home > Talents & Glyphs > Tanking Specs for 4.0.1 – Paladins

Tanking Specs for 4.0.1 – Paladins

This is part 4 of a 5-part series on tanking specs in 4.0.1. I recommend you view the introduction to the series first.


I’ve never played a paladin. These are my best guess predictions/recommendations based on what I know of protadins, but take them with about a shaker-full of salt.

My Picks

In addition to their mana bar, paladins have a new resource called Holy Power. Holy Power is generated by using certain abilities, stacks up to 3 times, and can be consumed to give certain other abilities a boost. Don’t be confused by the name: these are just Combo Points for paladins. (I don’t believe they fall off on target switch, though.)

The big 3 Holy Power dumps for protadins are Word of Glory, an instant-cast heal; Shield of the Righteous, a burst threat ability analogous to Shield of Righteousness; and Inquisition, a sustained threat ability. Holy Power will be generated by Crusader Strike and Hammer of the Righteous, which share a cooldown, and possibly other abilities.

The prot paladin rotation, like all paladin rotations really, has undergone a massive overhaul; in fact, major parts of the rotation are still being tweaked as of October 4th. It sounds like the tree is still in for some talent changes, actually, so this entire article is probably an exercise in futility. But I’ll give it my best shot!

The Blow-By-Blow

Divinity – I’ve always been a supporter of this talent; in my opinion, its low reputation among protadins in Wrath was a testament to how overpowered the whole class was. To be fair, with how overtuned healing was compared to tank health pools, it probably deserved some of the ragging it got; but when I told my tree friend Arb that most protadins considered Divinity garbage, his jaw dropped audibly. Anyway, it’s a new expansion and the devs have gone into it with the philosophy that Mana Matters. And if mana matters, then Divinity is an excellent talent.

Eternal Glory – This is a playstyle talent. The more you personally use Word of Glory, the better the talent is. At the moment the consensus seems to be that Shield of the Righteous and Inquisition will use the majority of a protadin’s holy power, but the spec is still changing, and needs change depending on situation.

Grand Crusader – I honestly don’t know what to think about this talent. As I approach tanking with a warrior mindset, Avenger’s Shield is the ability that I would rarely use rotationally, in order to have something always in reserve in case of emegencies; but I understand that the new paladin paradigm has significant GCD gaps even while using Avenger’s Shield rotationally, with Grand Crusader procs. Ultimately this is going to come down to implementation: if you’re required to use Avenger’s Shield in the rotation to keep threat, you’ll also be required to spec Grand Crusader. If you can reasonably hold Avenger’s Shield in reserve, limiting it to pulling and picking up adds, then Grand Crusader is a waste of talent points.

Holy Shield – Please note that there is no scaling with holy power here. Holy Shield has a 20 second duration regardless of whether you used a 1-HP or a 3-HP Shield of the Righteous. I expect paladins to open difficult survival fights with 1-point Holy Shields before ramping up to their full potential, similar to some rogue rotations.

Guarded by the Light – This is an interesting talent in that it provides a significantly higher benefit on the first point than the second. I’d say one point in this, so that Word of Glory causes Holy Shield, is absolutely required. The conversion of Word of Glory overheal into a bubble is also a significant survivability boost, turning Word of Glory into a versatile ability that can be used to heal reactively, or mitigate proactively. The second point is optional, merely strengthening the Word of Glory heal; like Eternal Glory, whether you invest this point will depend on your personal playstyle.

Eye for an Eye – At first glance (har har) this seems like a pretty decent talent. The problem is that most boss spells are immune to reflection. I assume that any spell which is immune to Spell Reflection will also be immune to Dark Simulacrum and Eye for an Eye, if only because warriors will whine if they aren’t.


Prime Glyphs
  • Glyph of Crusader Strike – Increases the critical strike chance of Crusader Strike by 5%.
  • Glyph of Hammer of the Righteous – Increases the damage of both the physical and Holy components of Hammer of the Righteous by 10%.
  • Glyph of Judgement – Your Judgement deals 10% more damage.
  • Glyph of Seal of Truth – Your Seal of Truth also grants 10 expertise while active.
  • Glyph of Shield of the Righteous – Increases the damage of Shield of the Righteous by 10%.

I don’t know which of these glyphs to recommend, to be honest. I’m not sure how the damage benefits of each of these will stack up, and as far as I know increased damage or critical strike or hit chance has no effect on other mechanics – I didn’t notice anything that procced on crit, for example, for additional synergy with Glyph of Crusader Strike. Play around with the glyphs, figure out which ones you prefer.

Major Glyphs
  • Glyph of Consecration – Increases the duration and cooldown of Consecration by 20%. This glyph increases Consecration’s mana efficiency while reducing its flexibility in positioning. Whether you’re using Consecration rotationally, or setting it somewhere to catch incoming adds, this is a pretty good glyph.
  • Glyph of Dazing Shield – Your Avenger’s Shield now also dazes targets. I wouldn’t glyph this most of the time. Avenger’s Shield excels as a caster pull, and the daze on it preventing good grouping is one of the biggest complaints I hear from protadins in Wrath. On the other hand, this glyph would allow Avenger’s Shield to act as a snare on fights when you have to kite (a) snareable mob(s), like trash on Gluth. So, situational.
  • Glyph of Divine Plea – Your Divine Plea provides an additional 5% of your total mana. For use only if you’re having major mana problems.
  • Glyph of Divine Protection – Removes the physical damage reduction of your Divine Protection, but increases the magical damage reduction by 20%. As far as tradeoff glyphs go, this is one of the best. Raid damage is usually magical, and only rarely physical; so on most fights for which you may need Divine Protection (e.g. Flu Shot Shortage), this is a really nice glyph. On the other hand, Divine Protection is rarely necessary, so the glyph is unlikely to see much action.
  • Glyph of Focused Shield – Your Avenger’s Shield hits 2 fewer targets, but for 30% more damage. I would not go for this glyph ever. Avenger’s Shield has recently been modified to not break crowd control, so there’s no reason you should be hitting less targets than you could. I suppose if you’re having a lot of trouble with single-target threat you could talent Grand Crusader and use this glyph, but outside of that this is worthless.
  • Glyph of the Ascetic Crusader – Your Crusader Strike costs 30% less mana. A nice efficiency glyph; I’d probably take this.
Minor Glyphs
  • Glyph of Blessing of Kings – Reduces the mana cost of Blessing of Kings by 50%.
  • Glyph of Blessing of Might – Reduces the mana cost of Blessing of Might by 50%. The Blessing of Wisdom effect has been rolled into Blessing of Might, by the way; you’ll either be providing Might or Kings.
  • Glyph of Truth – Reduces the mana cost of Seal of Truth by 50%.
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  1. October 5, 2010 at 3:30 pm

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