Taugrim's Prot Pally PVP Guide / Vids (Cata)

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80 Tauren Paladin
4095
Prot doesn't seem to have the burst, at least on live, to be worth pvping with over Ret. Considering the new judgement/sprint mechanic and most importantly the holy power generation of ret that can translate into huge burst or huge self heals, it makes me wonder just how viable prot will be compared to ret at 85 rated bgs/arenas.
Prot has more controlled burst than ret on live, outside of wings hammer spam.

Prots survivability makes ret just seem useless to play in pvp.
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
which trinket should i use with insignia, i have DMC:G and normal WFS


Either is good. I wish I had that choice to make.

Prot doesn't seem to have the burst, at least on live, to be worth pvping with over Ret.


Ret's DPS is tied to 2 cooldowns that are dispellable. It's one of the big flaws in the spec right now. It's fine in a BG against opponents who aren't good. But in any competitive context against solid opponents (e.g. arena, rated BGs), Zealotry/Avenging Wrath will be dispelled.

Have you ever tried Prot with the proper gear?
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
Prots survivability makes ret just seem useless to play in pvp.


Yea that is definitely a valid consideration in choosing Prot over Ret. It's the reason I preferred Prot over Ret in 3.3 and continue to prefer it in 4.0.

I hope that Ret's issues get addressed, having multiple viable specs for PVP would be healthier for the class.
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
Glad to see this thread made it to the new board!


No way I'd invest time in writing a Guide this and let it be lost due to a forum migration. I learned my lesson back in LOTRO: Turbine the game dev used to delete "older" threads, which included my Captain and Orc Reaver Guides. I keep copies of my Guides on my blog now, so I never lose them:
http://taugrim.com

Unfortunately we will lose all the previous comments on this Guide that were on the thread on the old forum, but I'm not going to take the time to cut and past the 90+ posts over here. Most of the salient comments / feedback have already been incorporated in the Guide, and I will continue to update it over time.

I think my setup is coming along nicely (with a few minor personal preference tweaks).


Are you referring to keybindings / skill bars / macros?

If people have interesting macros they'd like to share, please post 'em!
85 Human Paladin
3710
I feel like I might be a little low on pvp gear at the moment. I know I want to upgrade my boots and gloves for sure, and get the libram.

At this point in my set, what would you recommend to switch out for upgrades? What do you think is most important?

I was thinking about keeping my sanctified ret 2 set bonus for the 5% damage increase across the board.
90 Human Paladin
13665
1. Quick question, what do you tend to do when you get trapped by another tank, say on your way to a flag or on your way to helping to defend a node that has incoming? Suppose you get caught by a tank with lots of self healing like a blood DK.

2. Should you bother ever targeting other tanks, or should you do your best to leave them alone when you see them in a group of other people?
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
At this point in my set, what would you recommend to switch out for upgrades? What do you think is most important?

I was thinking about keeping my sanctified ret 2 set bonus for the 5% damage increase across the board.


IMO you should get all the Plate PVP pieces, set and offset. They're stacked with Str, Resil, and Crit, which are our best stats for PVP. Crit is a good stat now for PVP, given that Resil does not reduce Crit %.

If you want to run with PVE accessories and such, that's up to you. If you are running in premades or have a pocket healer, having the Str PVE accessories instead of AP PVP accessories will boost your DPS because we double-dip from Str with the TbtL mechanic.

1. Quick question, what do you tend to do when you get trapped by another tank, say on your way to a flag or on your way to helping to defend a node that has incoming? Suppose you get caught by a tank with lots of self healing like a blood DK.


If there isn't a reason to ignore the other tank (e.g. there isn't a squishy nearby, the node isn't in danger, etc), I'll kill the tank. If I'm trying to get somewhere, I'll try to gap the tank using AS, stun, and Freedom.

2. Should you bother ever targeting other tanks, or should you do your best to leave them alone when you see them in a group of other people?


You pretty much answered your own question.

There are some exception cases, when it makes sense to target a tank over other squishies, e.g.:
1. to build HoPo from hitting the tank when the other opponents are kiters and you likely can't reach them due to CC / distance
2. to prevent the tank from capping a node
3. the tank is the EFC and it looks like our DPS is sufficient to kill the tank
Edited by Taugrimm on 11/21/2010 8:32 AM PST
90 Human Paladin
13665
Thanks Taugrimm. Although I more meant 'should you try and peel a tank who's interrupting and harassing one of your team's healers, or concentrate on harassing their healers/casters?'
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
Thanks Taugrimm. Although I more meant 'should you try and peel a tank who's interrupting and harassing one of your team's healers, or concentrate on harassing their healers/casters?'


A tank is not going to kill a healer solo, unless there is a significant gear/skill differential. I often go after casters because some lack kiting technique, so I can effectively disrupt their DPS and CC's because they can't deal with a melee on them.

Really depends on the opponent.
85 Blood Elf Paladin
3660
thanks for the info, so far so good

i was scanning through the sk 100 and i came across a actual pally who wasnt 0/0/0 and pretty much took his spec and glyphs

he forged every crit into mastery and so i did the same

i havent done worse, thats i can say since im not a mathcrafter

the way i see it, mages are gonna just blow me up no matter what, but if i can take on two rogues and pwn into the ground. maybe theyll break a few mouses like i did when i played mine :P
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
thanks for the info, so far so good

i was scanning through the sk 100 and i came across a actual pally who wasnt 0/0/0 and pretty much took his spec and glyphs

he forged every crit into mastery and so i did the same

i havent done worse, thats i can say since im not a mathcrafter

the way i see it, mages are gonna just blow me up no matter what, but if i can take on two rogues and pwn into the ground. maybe theyll break a few mouses like i did when i played mine :P


Crit is pretty good now that Resil doesn't reduce Crit chance. If you go the re-forging route of Crit->Mastery you lose damage and healing, while increasing block % against melee attacks.

Given that, I'm not sure that there is sufficient reason to re-forge this way.
Edited by Taugrimm on 11/22/2010 9:15 AM PST
83 Blood Elf Paladin
3295
Sorry for the dumb question, but there's any real difference between the Axe, Sword and Mace Wrathful weapons? I mean, other than pure aesthetics. Thanks
90 Human Paladin
13665


Crit is pretty good now that Resil doesn't reduce Crit chance. If you go the re-forging route of Crit->Mastery you lose damage and healing, while increasing block % against melee attacks.

Given that, I'm not sure that there is sufficient reason to re-forge this way.


It does make you a lot more powerful versus melee, but as you mentioned before, casters are a much bigger problem for us, so the faster you can take them down (ie: crit), the better. You have a big case with the extra healing too. A crit WoG is very valuable. It's 50% free extra healing. If you frequenly find yourself in small engagements (like 1v1, 2v2, 3v3, or 2v1, 1v2, 3v2, or 2v3), I'd definitely leave the crit alone and not reforge it.

I personally prefer the mastery route myself, because oftentimes in BG's I'm being healed externally due to defending a node or carrying a flag, and the longer I live the better, plus Reckoning gets like a 100% uptime with a melee or pet on me, which is very frequent (especially if you taunt pets...9/10 times the player with the pet doesn't notice and fails to re-issue the command to attack its original target). Furthermore, a little extra damage doesn't usually help me, because I'm often in situations where it's unfavourable odds like 5 to 3. Or situations where neither is relevant like 18 v 21 or something at the AV choke points.
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
Given that 4.0.3a is Live with major Pally class changes, I'll be updating the guide and providing narrated videos that discuss the changes and the impacts on our playstyle, spec, etc and of course actual PVP footgae. Stay tuned, material should be coming in the next couple days.

In the meantime, keep posting questions/comments so that we can address them.

I suspect that the recommended Prot spec will change from 3/31/2 to 0/31/5 (three points in Crusade and two in Imp Judgement) but I'll need some hands-on time to verify that guess.

---------------------------------------

Sorry for the dumb question, but there's any real difference between the Axe, Sword and Mace Wrathful weapons? I mean, other than pure aesthetics. Thanks


Relevant excerpt from the Guide:
As with pre-4.0, you want the slowest swinging, highest max-damage 1H weapon you can find. Not only will your auto-attacks crit harder but more importantly some of our abilities scale based on weapon damage not weapon DPS. In 4.0 you can buy S8 arena gear that has a rating requirement of < 2k with Honor points. Therefore, anyone can purchase the Wrathful Gladiator’s Cleaver (http://www.wowhead.com/item=51515) or Pummeler (http://www.wowhead.com/item=51519), which have the same stats and are superb 1H weapons for Prot PVP. If you play a Human or Dwarf Paladin, take the Pummeler over the Cleaver per the 3 Expertise racial (contributed by: Marko, Tullkas).


The Slicer, Cleaver, and Pummeler all have the same swing speed and DPS. However, the Slicer has a narrower damage range: higher minimum damage and more importantly, lower maximum damage. Given the importance of burst damage in PVP, the Cleaver/Pummeler are therefore recommended over the Slicer.

---------------------------------------

It does make you a lot more powerful versus melee, but as you mentioned before, casters are a much bigger problem for us, so the faster you can take them down (ie: crit), the better. You have a big case with the extra healing too. A crit WoG is very valuable. It's 50% free extra healing. If you frequenly find yourself in small engagements (like 1v1, 2v2, 3v3, or 2v1, 1v2, 3v2, or 2v3), I'd definitely leave the crit alone and not reforge it.


Agree with the above.

I personally prefer the mastery route myself, because oftentimes in BG's I'm being healed externally due to defending a node or carrying a flag, and the longer I live the better, plus Reckoning gets like a 100% uptime with a melee or pet on me, which is very frequent (especially if you taunt pets...9/10 times the player with the pet doesn't notice and fails to re-issue the command to attack its original target). Furthermore, a little extra damage doesn't usually help me, because I'm often in situations where it's unfavourable odds like 5 to 3. Or situations where neither is relevant like 18 v 21 or something at the AV choke points.


In general, if you are in a BG and opponents are focus-firing you when you not the flag carrier and there are other friendly Healers/squishees nearby that they could target, your opponents are not terribly bright :)

If your goal is to boost your overall survivability, IMO you should stack Resilience, which provides guaranteed mitigation against any damage, whereas Mastery only helps mitigate damage for blockable attacks, which by definition excludes all spells and any melee attacks that you are unable to block. I'm not saying that stacking Mastery won't improve your survivability - it will - but Resil is probably much more effective based on their comparative mechanics.

By the way, my guess is that the overall DPS gain you get from Reckoning proc'ing due to an investment in Mastery points over the base 18% block chance (as of 4.0.3a) is probably low. Straight up Str and Crit will provide far better returns.
Edited by Taugrimm on 11/23/2010 4:33 PM PST
85 Dwarf Paladin
5490
Preliminary tests (no numbers just end results of BGs on average), looks like our our damage is reduced and heals increased. (still very competitive and fun to play)

In the past, I was almost always top damage (or close) when I just decided to mindlessly kill things, but now I am finding it almost impossible to keep up with pure damage classes (which is fair, since my survivability, on average, is better.

Not seeing 22-23k SHoR crits anymore. At best its at 12k

1v1 still rocking the house :) ...although shadow priests and frost mages can be tough.
Edited by Tyefang on 11/23/2010 10:57 PM PST
85 Blood Elf Paladin
2525
The Guide has been updated per the new live Patch 4.0.3a.

There were many changes throughout the Guide - please let me know if I missed anything.

14. Recent Patch Changes

The Devs are still making a lot of tweaks to Paladins in Patch 4.x. Below is a summary of changes (documented and undocumented) for recent patches and their impacts.

Current Live Version: 4.0.3a

My comments are in italics. Please note some changes were undocumented in the Official Patch Notes.

Patch 4.0.3a Changes

* Divine Bulwark now grants 2.25% less block chance per point of Mastery, up from 2%. Very minor buff. Additional undocumented buff: block chance increased from 16 to 18%
* Seal of Truth: periodic damage from Censure reduced by 25%. This is a nerf to the DoT portion. Additional undocumented nerf: the additional % damage at 5 stacks has also been reduced, according to my tooltips from 16% to 10%
* Protector of the Innocent no longer triggers from self-heals. This was the most significant nerf for Prot (and Holy and Ret too) in the patch
* Holy shield no longer increases chance to block. Instead, it increases the amount blocked by an additional 10%, for a total of 40% damage blocked. This is a significant nerf for PVP.The previous version of HS increased block chance by 15%
* Shield of the Righteous: Contribution of attack power halved (now 60% with full Holy Power) and base damage brought up so that a level 85 paladin in Heroic dungeon gear deals the same damage with no Vengeance, but Vengeance has less impact. As I had expected, this so far has not had much impact on Live - my crit SotR damage is about the same in 4.0.3a as it was in 4.0.1
* Exorcism damage has been increased by approximately 50%. No impact. Exorcism is not a Prot PVP ability, given the mechanics (requires cast-time)
* Shield of the Templar now reduces the cooldown of Guardian of Ancient Kings by 40/80/120 seconds, down from 1/2/3 minutes. Minor nerf, not relevant til Cata
* Wrath of the Lightbringer now increases Crusader Strike and Judgement damage by 50/100%, up from 30/60%. On paper this seems like a buff to CS, but in reality CS base damage was also nerfed (undocumented). On Live I am seeing 270% for my CS tooltip with 3/3 Crusade instead of the 292% in 4.0.1
* Crusade now also has a proc on kill to increase the healing done by the paladin's next Holy Light by 100/200/300% for 15 seconds, in addition to its current effects. Minor buff.
* Pursuit of Justice now has an 8-second internal cooldown, shared with Blessed Life. Not relevant yet, but a minor nerf in Cata.
* Glyph of LoH was changed from a Minor to Major glyph (undocumented change). Minor nerf.
* I have been observing a decrease in crit AS damage compared to 4.0.1, about 5% (undocumented change). I'm not sure if this is related, but I also noticed the Glyph description for Focused Shield say that it boosts damage by 30%. I can't remember what it said in 4.0.1 but I thought it was 100%.
* GbtL was nerfed in terms of the bonus healing amount, but the net healing from WoG is about the same as it was in 4.0.1, because the base heal for WoG was buffed (undocumented change)
Edited by Taugrimm on 11/25/2010 12:27 PM PST
"Shield of the Templar now reduces the cooldown of Guardian of Ancient Kings by 40/80/120 seconds, down from 1/2/3 minutes. In addition, your Divine Plea will generate 3 Holy Power."

You Missed that in your update.
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