Best spec/ build for PvP (mainly BG's)

I have heard people arguing for all three specs.
- For Ret I hear "Lots of burst, highest DPS of the specs, almost as good as surviving as the other two, & a few stun break out abilities + Prot lost some good stat/ ability in 4.3 making us better"
- For Prot I hear "You make Blood DK's look squishy, you do almost as much DPS as Ret but you survive like doubly as long, & we can out DPS Holy by a lot with just 2 attacks (or something like that)"
- For Holy I hear "always wanted due to our healz, amazing AoE heals, good HoTs, fair DPS, & we have cookies cuz we dont get in the flame war between the other 2 specs (I added that, cuz every Holy I talked to, unlike most Prots & Rets I talked to, weren't trying to sell me the spec, or slander the other ones)"

I am willing to play the best PvP class over the more fun one (cuz for me winning is more fun then a fun spec). ATM I am leaning toward Prot or Ret, just cuz I like long survival, & I love lots of burst, & if I went Holy I would feel bad cuz it makes me sad when Im a healer spec, & I forget to heal a bro/bra in a BG & they die, but if I could fill a role without having to feel bad about not healing with Holy, cuz my job lies elsewhere, I may go for that.

So what is better/ best for BG's? TY in advance :D
I run prot just about all the time and pretty much only go ret in SOTA, when we have to defend (more burst on tanks and faster movement speed). But in other BGs I run prot. I carry the flag 98% of the time in flag BGs and a prot pally is the perfect choice for flag defense. I can hold off 5 people long enough for reinforcements to show up and will often take couple of em with me before I'm done. I crit between 20 and 67k. And always the last one to die. Prot is also great for punching a hole in opposing teams defense. I love to run right past the melee front line and get right into the middle of horde. I gaurantee opposing team will always back up when they have a prot pally going ape !@#$ in the midst of em. Note you WILL get focused so I stack mastery and have all strentgh gems for damage. People will tell you to stack resil. Don't do this it just makes you an annoying punching bag. Can take a ton of damage but can't deal any. Thats no fun. Also your a problem for casters. You may not be able to kill a heals solo. But you can put them under enough pressure where they have to choose between healing themselves or teammates. Check my talents and glyphs and give it a try. Also, I have BS and JC as professions. Prot pallies are super gear dependent so the extra slots and more powerful gems are a must.
I enjoy Retribution. The survivability is insane and the burst is quite nice to "get things done" in casual Battlegrounds. Although the lack of a gap closer for now is unfortunate, thankfully I went Engineering for that burst of speed to chase down that sprinting Flag Carrier or running in to throw that clutch Judgment to keep an enemy off the flag.
I've been wondering the same and thanks bruceleroy for the input on strength and mastery gems versus res ones, it does explain a little bit.
Hey thanks for this forum and all the tips I really need some help I just got my paladin to 85 the other day and I wasn't sure what spec to make him but you guys helped.
I've got to disagree with a lot of what Bruceleroy posted in this thread.

For one thing he paints a much too rosy picture regarding Protection Paladin PvP, Prot isn't in a good place atm and anyone who thinks otherwise is spending the large majority of their time playing unrated BGs in full Conquest gear. A healer in full Conquest gear can do more damage then a dps in quest greens but that doesn't mean healers are in a good place as far as doing damage goes.

In particular I disagree with ...

05/04/2012 07:33 PMPosted by Bruceleroy
a prot pally is the perfect choice for flag defense.

Which implies that Prot Pallies are the best choice for node defense. In my opinion dps are better node defenders then tank specs atm since the node will usually stand until the healer at the node dies at which point the dps (and tank specs) will die soon after. And dps has better tools to protect the healer, Ret for example has big off heals to get the healer through a stun lock and also brings much more offensive pressure. A pet class is even better then a Ret since the pet makes it impossible for a rogue to solo ninja cap. Even if you were to decide to sacrifice the offensive pressure and bring a tank spec who isn't going to be much help outside of node defending both Prot War and Blood DK bring more to the table then Prot Pally atm.

Also ...

People will tell you to stack resil. Don't do this

While stacking Str is a decision on your part depending how much offensive power you want vs. survivability in general it's better to play to your strengths which in Prot's case is survivability. Survivability is especially important when carrying flags (the only thing Prot is really good at, and even then it's the worst of the tank specs). And I prefer resilience over mastery for survivability. The reason is resilience works on all incoming damage, mastery only works on melee attacks coming from in front of you and likely won't help at all when you need the extra survivability the most (stun locked).

As much as I enjoy Prot (it's been my MS since leveling) I can't recommend Prot as a main PvP spec. I'm playing Ret this season since the veng nerf with a Prot OS. I still play Prot anytime it's somewhat viable, which right now is RBGs for flag carrying maps only when there isn't a geared and skilled Prot War or Blood DK to carry and unrated BGs.

As for the OP's question I think Holy is the strongest PvP spec atm, however since you don't enjoy healing Ret is also a decent choice. And you can use the same gear as Ret for a Prot OS which is a good option to have to in case you get bored in unrated during long grinds and as a back up FCer.
Do which one appeals to you the most, they are three very different specs. Prot being the worst because it is non viable in PvP, but if you enjoy it, why not? Personally, I love ret, amazing burst, great survivability, big crits, there's no better feeling than popping all your cooldowns and blowing them up in a matter of seconds. I suggest choosing between ret and holy, bruceleroy made prot sound better than it is.
I agree completely with Carathen here.

I've been a prot since BC on my main and can say Prot PVP has never been in worse shape than what it is now for anything remotely serious.

We're the worst pick in BGs for flag defence or carrying, with very limited survivability.

The old adage of 'bubble plate healz' doesn't swing anymore as Prot has been pulled apart step by step since BC to a point of worthlessness now.

Whether you want to start with the WOG nerf or the Vengence Nerf, the Bubble Nerf (Bubble USED to be 'completely impenetrable and undispellable') to our Freedom being stolen and a raft of other progressive debuffs, the Prot Pally sadly has NO PLACE in BGs (and especially arena) anymore.

If you disagree, go to Arena Junkies now and point out ANY of the prot pallies in the top 20 teams in any bracket.

protip - you won't find any and that's for a reason.

When Ghostcrawler famously said 'Bring the player, not the CLASS' he really meant 'Play whatever class you want, but if you don't play OUR spec we WANT you to play for PVP, you'll want to hang yourself in frustration'

Don't even waste your time with Prot in BGs or Arena unless you're overgeared or just want to have a laugh, it's not competitive at all.

If you want a *serious* PVP spec for Pally, go Holy.

That's been the spec Blue has pigeon holed pallies in since Vanilla and quite frankly, nothing has changed on the PVP front.

Every single time Pallies in either Ret or Prot have had a moment of glory, every little b1tch in the game has had a whine and blue has enjoyed putting us back in our 'rightful' place.

Go holy bro or go home. Everything else Pally wise for PVP is a waste of time if you're even remotely serious.

Go holy bro or go home. Everything else Pally wise for PVP is a waste of time if you're even remotely serious.

I beg to differ. You didn't even mention anything about ret in your post, assuming you don't know much about ret?
Fair call. Ret does definitely have a good representation in PvP as well.

My specialty is Prot in both PvP and PvE, so I can't talk too much about my limited experience with Ret - but paired with the right players, it has it's place in game.

I'm looking forward to prot for MoP though. The changes to our defensive abilities might make us more viable as flag carriers in RBG, but we'll have to wait and see.

But as of right now? Prot Pallies are pretty much bottom feeders in both Arena and RBG. You're never going to break 2200 with a prot pally right now.
I have just started playing a paladin, but i did a bit of research before making this and i keep seeing people post holy is the best pvp spec right now. there isnt much post about holy so ill point out its pros & cons. 1) pros: Holy pallys may not do much dps compared to ret, but if you play right, your just about unkillable because you can heal, attack, heal, etc. I went up against a holy pally with about half our team in WSG and it took forever to take him down. he wasnt killing us (very fast), but he just wouldnt die. if you play right in holy you make a blood dk look like a clothie (exaggeration, obviously). another interesting thing is you could be a backup heals if need be. say they had the healer stun locked and the fc was nearly dead. you can become healer and heal him for 30-50k on a crit. 2) cons: like people pointed out, holy isnt the best dmg dealer. holy pallys also dont have pure survivability, unlike prot. it relies on heals to keep you alive. so if you were stun locked by a rogue and a hunter, your probly dead meat.

Link for guide to holy pally build:
Ret or Holy really. Don't listen to Bruceleroy. Specifically because he claims that he can hold 5 people off... and then recommends not gemming resil.

Ret has decent survivability as well, with way more of the damage output, especially if you're just doing random BGs. That takes prot out of the discussion imo
My closest friend is about done playing his prot in arenas or bg's. Not because he sucks, but he feels that prot sucks. His damage is lousy, nowhere near mine (I plat ret). Sure, his survivability is better than mine, but his heals aren't, and he can't peel. He stuns whenever HOJ is ready, but other than that, he's basically ignored in arenas and bg's because nobody considers him a threat.

Now he's leveling a shammy, so I'm leveling a dk until we meet at 85 again. I'm gonna jump back on ret because I think the burst is good when timed right, and the WOG's are insane.

I don't have advice for the OP, I can only share what a good friend of mine was going thru.
For Holy I hear "always wanted due to our healz, amazing AoE heals, good HoTs,

Hey I don't want to bust Bruceleroy's chops here on his love for Prot in PvP, I've played Prot in PVP since mid BC and it's really had some spectacular moments (I'll never forget the faceroll period that was prot/holy), but on the whole, Prot pallies in PvP have been very lacklustre and if you want to cut it down even further to the flag carrying/protecting BG environment, whilst Prots can technically get the job done, other flag carrying classes leave prot pallies for dead.

Bruceleroy can't seem to break 1300 with his Prot pally in CP gear, so it says a fair amount on where the spec currently stands. (again, no offense intended, just stating that if you're going to make a statement in defence of a spec, you should have the proof to back it up)

It's ironic that the ideal of a protection spec pally is that we're supposed to be the bastions and 'tank' class, yet we're more squishy than a holy in most respects. Since the WOG nerf, prots hit like a wet noodle and have the survivability of a ret.

So whilst the Prot spec is the closest to my heart for PvP, there's no denying that of all the three specs, Prot is definitely the weakest option to take.

Now looking at the MOP Beta right now, I think RET is the one that's looking to shine. Currently, the WOG cooldown for Prot is back to it's glory days, but our burst through the shield slam has been effectively shut down, so whilst I can see a MOP Prot Pally perhaps being a more viable flag carrier, I get the distinct impression that will be about the limit of the spec and even then, I am not so sure we'll be doing it any better than a holy anyway.

So all things considered, I'd probably stick with either Holy or a Ret. Both specs fluxuate in terms of power and viability every few patches, but both specs have had long term success in both the BG and Arena environment

Looking ahead to MOP, I think Ret might have the edge on all 3 pally specs, but we'll have to wait and see closer to the final product.

In any case, I'd only consider prot if you were a die hard, casual PvPer who doesn't care about being viable or a complete masochist (where I think is where I sit).
Prot PvP is pretty much a joke, outside of casual BGs. You will never be chosen over a Prot Warrior or Blood DK to FC in RBGs. We have very mediocre cooldowns compared to the other classes, as far as PvP goes. Also, our mobility just plain sucks. A Prot Warrior or Feral will be across the map in a few seconds. Blood DKs don't have great mobility, but amazing self-healing and survivability to make up for it. Our damage isn't great, SotR will occasionally hit pretty hard, but most of the time, it's just "meh." The silence tied into AS, along with the glyphed snare is super annoying to others, and pretty fun to mess with.

Retribution, in terms of damage output, is the only way to go if you're looking to deal some damage. I personally feel, that compared to other classes, we hit like wet noodles when our CDs aren't up. Our sustained damage just sucks, but we do hit pretty damn hard if we aren't instantly dispelled or CCd. While our damage may not be the best, we're by far, the best support class out there. As Ret, you will see 80k+ WoGs with selfless healer, HoP and HoF are also really valuable and can get you and your partners out of the nastiest situations. A properly timed HoS will break CCs like Blind and Polymorph if used correctly, but that goes for any spec. Overall, Ret's damage is pretty poor compared to most other melee classes, but we have a lot of survivability and utility to make up for it. The ability to cleanse movement impairing effects is great too. Our mobility isn't too bad, but don't expect to kill Mages and even really skilled Hunters, we're still easy to kite.

Holy is a great spec. I absolutely love it, and prefer it over the other healers I have. We have really nice instant heals, I can keep myself alive off Holy Shocking, instant FoL and WoG 90% of the time. Aura mastery is a great cooldown, it's fairly simple to counter though. We can get CCd or stunned through it, and it'll be a waste. If left alone, you'll easily top yourself off from 20% or less. Our guardian CD is great, too. Basically, it'll double our single target heals, for the next 5 heals. This is a life saver, if you pop it, WoG yourself for 35k, your guardian heals you for the same amount, and just like that you're back to full health. We have very nice mana regen, and we rarely go OOM under most circumstances. We have the poorest damage output of all the healer classes though, especially if you don't spec into denounce.

Basically, play what you enjoy. Keep in mind that, the sad truth is , there is no reason to take a Ret Pally over a Holy Pally into RBGs, and 9/10 times, they'll take another DPS instead, but we are GREAT healers. If you're looking to get serious, Holy is probably your best bet, you'll have a much easier time. But if you're just looking to have fun, then play around with specs, Ret can be very fun, especially in random BGs. You'll do just fine as any spec if you're only messing around in BGs. Of course, this is all my opinion.
I am gonna speak for Holy Pally now. I love PvP as holy. I truly can with decent resil and int hold off quite a fair bit of attackers with the right CDs and rotation and insta heals. I love topping the healing charts and healing someone at 5% health and watching them beat the person they almost lost to. I recommend Holy.

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