- 2: http://elitistjerks....58/#post1336981
- 3: http://elitistjerks....58/#post1336984
- 4: http://elitistjerks....58/#post1337037
- 5: http://elitistjerks....58/#post1337042
As always, fact-checking or proofreading is welcome.
Text in dark green is quoted information provided by others in this thread or elsewhere. The name of the poster will be hotlinked to the original source of the quote.
Table of Contents
- Frequently asked Questions
- Ability rotations
- Abilities and Spells
- Gearing for Survival
- Gearing for Threat
- Slot-Specific Notes and "Interesting" Items
- Long-term Considerations
- The Tanking Ethos
- Stats and other Numbers
- The Hit Table
- Diminishing Returns
- Quick and Dirty Level 80 Gear Set
This guide, and the discussion thread accompanying it, is intended to be a compendium of collected community wisdom regarding Protection Paladins and tanking. This is, however, a field of ongoing discovery and development, so this guide should be considered a work in progress.
The primary audience for this guide is Protection-specced Paladins (generally meaning at least 51 talent points in Protection including Hammer of the Righteous) who tank (or are interested in tanking) in PvE progression content, primarily heroic 5-mans and 10- and 25-man raids. Some of what's contained herein may touch on leveling 5-mans, soloing, farming, and PvP, but the primary focus will be "serious" tanking.
Much of tanking is art rather than science, and as a result a lot of the information contained herein will be based on opinion -- sometimes the "conventional wisdom" of the Prot paladin community, sometimes my own more personal opinions. I will try to be as fair as possible in relating the opinions of others. Nonetheless, if you disagree with me, post in this thread and I'll try to quote and include as many sensible viewpoints as possible.
Many people have contributed to the development of paladin tanking wisdom, both on this forum and in other venues; far too many for me to thank them all personally.
Regarding this guide, I am indebted to:
- Quigon for his excellent Protection Warrior Guide whose format I have loosely copied and adapted. In particular, reading his guide helped me mentally catalog the important topics to cover.
- Chicken, who maintained the Protection and You thread for TBC. Similarly, Chicken's guide helped me remember what's important and what isn't.
- All prot paladin posters on this forum, far too many to name without missing someone.
- The Elitist Jerks for hosting and maintaining the premier WoW raiding discussion forum for the last several years.
- My guild, The Eleventh Hour, for not complaining when I decided I was going to try the unproven Prot Paladin spec at the beginning of The Burning Crusade; to "Vish" and "Indi" for treating me as an equal; and perhaps most of all to our healers, for being cool about me yelling at them when I died because I forgot to switch out of healing gear.
Frequently Asked Questions
Simple questions that you expect to have simple answers, especially questions relating to paladins generally moreso than protection specifically, should be asked in the Simple Questions/Simple Answers thread.
What's the best race for a prot paladin?
For Alliance, all three have their upsides. Dwarves potentially get the most expertise, with +5 expertise when using a mace, compared to +3 for a human with a sword or mace, and nothing for Draenei -- but this does require a certain weapon type. Dwarves also get Stoneform, which is potentially useful as a gimmick on certain fights.
The major buff for Draenei is Heroic Presence; since this affects an entire group, a tank of another race can get it from another Draenei, but generally only a Draenei can assume that it will always be there.
Humans get +3 expertise buffs for both maces and swords, and the Every Man For Himself ability, which can be useful for breaking fears and other disorient/stun type effects without having to use Divine Shield and remove all threat. Other races can get this ability by wearing a PvP trinket, so the real benefit for humans is having it available all the time regardless of the gear they're wearing.
If you're going to roll Horde, then obviously Blood Elf is your only option. The big perk for Blood Elves is Arcane Torrent, which neatly reinforces a natural weak point for paladins: scarcity of spell-interrupts.
There are other perks for the different races that can be useful for leveling or grinding, but generally don't come into play in endgame raiding. Diplomacy allows humans to finish reputation grinds 10% faster. Draenei and Blood Elves get bonuses to Jewelcrafting and Enchanting respectively -- if you take these professions, these bonuses are actually quite useful for "leapfrogging" over some of the more expensive/annoying parts of the leveling grind. The Draenei racial healing spell, Gift of the Naaru, can be handy for reducing downtime while soloing (since it uses no mana) and the mana-restoring effect of the Blood Elf Arcane Torrent is similarly helpful.
In my opinion, however, enjoying the appearance of your character is worth more in the long run than any of the racial abilities. You're going to spend an awful lot of time with this character in the middle of your monitor, and it's worth it to make sure your in-game persona is something you're happy with. If you don't want to play a human, then you shouldn't let Every Man for Himself change your mind.
I've got 540 defense skill so I should be uncrittable, but some mobs in instances or outdoors are still critting me. What's going on with that?
Some mobs have higher than normal crit rates, or have buffs that raise their crit rate. These are the exception rather than the rule, so this shouldn't be an issue very often, and no known raid bosses have more than a 5.6% base crit rate against a level 80 player.
Which is better, Blessing of Sanctuary or Blessing of Kings?
As of the 3.2 patch, probably Sanctuary. Both blessings give the same stamina/hp bonus, and Sanctuary's damage reduction and mana return will almost always make it better for both survival and threat than Kings. Even for non-paladin tanks, Sanctuary is better unless the incoming damage is very small, in which case the higher threat and dps of Kings might be more useful.