Topic Holy Paladin Guide - For the healer in us all
Edited by Zalandar on 15/05/12 11:16 (BST)
Updated 1/7/2011 [NOW OUTDATED]
Welcome to the Paladin Holy guide made by the community for the community. This guide looks to answer any questions you have about healing as a paladin in PvE and will hopefully cover everything you need to know.
Before we start talking about everything you need to know there are some addons that will make your life a lot easier as a healer. Although there are many addons that do the same thing i have only listed the ones that i have tried and tested myself. It is always a good idea to try different versions of addons to see what you prefer. I suggest searching YouTube for a video on how to setup the following addons. All of these addons can be found at
Recount - Keeps track of all healing and damage done to players. Really good for working out why people died and improving your healing output by seeing what you done and when.
Omen - keeps track on everyone's aggro which is handy for placing hands on people and making sure your heals do not over aggro the tank.
Bartender 4 - Allows you move your UI bars anywhere you want so you can make your UI a little clearer.
DBM (Deadly boss mods) - Gives you warnings on all bosses in WoW making it easier to avoid boss abilities, interrupt at the right time etc.
Omni CC - Places a timer on your spell icon which is on CD
So like any class the first thing you are going to do is select your talents. When it comes to spending your talent points it really is a player choice. Below you can find a great build to begin with along with the best glyphs available to us. You can change certain talents and glyphs to cater for how you heal.
Above is a spec that has been tried and tested and i find works very well. Some people will decide to change this slightly depending on there own needs. There is no right or wrong way to spend you final few points so i advice you to try a few different spec builds to see what suits you best.
There are a number of glyphs you can use and below you will find a list for all that will be useful to you.
Glyph of Holy Shock
Glyph of Seal of Insight
Glyph of Word of Glory
Glyph of Divine Favor
Glyph of Beacon of Light
Glyph of Divine Plea
Glyph of Divinity
Glyph of Lay on Hands
Glyph of Light of Dawn
Glyph of Cleansing
Glyph of the Long Word
Glyph of Insight
Glyph of Blessing of Might
Glyph of Blessing of Kings
As you can see there a few different glyphs you can use and all are good, it comes down to player preference.
The following section is all about what stats to aim for and why. Something to remember when collecting your gear is the Plate Specialization talent that we have which in our case grants a 5% boost to intellect. This is in place to stop people using other armor not associated with our class such as Cloth, mail and leather. In order to get the 5% bonus you must have plate equipped in every slot that allows it.
Intellect is our main stat and is on every piece of gear we use. It is our main source of gaining more mana but also provides other useful stats for us.
Intellect provides us with mana, spell power and spell critical hit.
Spell power is the best stat for us to increase the amount our spells heal and is mainly found on weapons.
Spell power increases the healing of our spells.
Edited by Zalandar on 27/06/11 23:14 (BST)
Spirit increases the rate at which we regain our mana while not casting. If you find yourself having problems with going OOM (out of mana) then Spirit is something you should aim for when reforging.
Also while spec in Holy there is a talent called Meditation which allows us to gain 50% spirit while in combat. It is for this reason that Spirit can really help out with our mana management.
Haste is our best stat for increasing the output of our heals and reduces the cast time of spells as well as the GCD.
GCD (Global Cool Down) is a timer that begins as soon as you begin to cast a spell and prevents you casting any other spell. This timer can be bought down to 1 second and will then go no lower, this is called capped.
The haste cap for us is 3489 haste rating which when achieved will have the GCD at 1 second. Although you can continue to stack haste after this cap to reduce the casting time of Holy Light and Divine Plea it is seen as a waste.
It is worth noting that you can achieve the Haste cap using buffs, therefore Haste also has a soft cap which is 1019. What this means is when you are in a raid (25 man) with the right people in your group you can achieve the Haste cap using the buffs that will be provided.
I suggest aiming for the soft cap and then going for more if required, for instance 10 man raiding.
Spell Crit increases the chance that your heals will deal extra damage and healing thus improving your healing output.
Although Crit sounds good it suffers from a poor transfer rating meaning that you Would need to stack a lot more to make a big difference.
Mastery for us is called illuminated healing and provides a shield for the person you cast a heal on to the value of 13% of the heal lasting 15 seconds. The trouble at the moment with mastery is that the bubbles are simply too small to be effective thus making mastery as it stands our worse stat.
If you cast a 10k heal the target you healed will have a shield worth 1300 damage.
Each point in mastery increases the shield value by 1.5%
All of the above stats are good for us but as you can see some are worth more than others. Below is a guide which shows what stats to aim for from most important to least.
Spirit (until you are happy with your mana management)
Haste (until soft cap is reached)
You may decide to go for other stats first such as Spell Crit which is fine too and really depends on how you heal. It is always worth trying things for yourself and see what works best for your style of healing.
Gems and Enchants
So we now have a well geared Paladin that has a nice spec who has more than likely done a few normals and is getting the hang of things. As your get closer to running Cataclysm heroics you will need to start using Gems and Enchants.
When it comes to what stats to aim for with Enchants and Gems it pretty much follows the guide in the stats section with Intellect being the main thing we should be aiming for and Mastery being at the bottom.
Below is a list of the best in slot Gems and Enchants we can have
Red - Brilliant Inferno Ruby
Yellow - Quick Amberjewel
Blue - Sparkling Ocean Sapphire
Purple - Purified Demonseye
Orange - Reckless Ember Topaz
Meta - Ember Shadowspirit Diamond
For those who do not know about Gems Purple and orange will fit into either the Red, Yellow or blue slots. When it comes to Meta gems these require that you have a certain amount of gems equipped before they will work.
Ember Shadowspirit diamond Requires you have at least 2 Yellow gems equipped.
There are again many ways you can Gem your gear but as a rule if you can equip a Gem with intellect on it then go for that.
As said above Enchants should always provide Intellect, where this is not possible it is a player choice and once again should be decided using the guide in the stats section. For shoulder Enchants you are required to get Exalted reputation with Therazane and Leg Enchants can be provided by Tailors. The Head Enchant requires Exalted reputation with Guardians of Hyjal.
Edited by Zalandar on 01/07/11 09:46 (BST)
Head - Arcanum of Hyjal
Boots - Enchant Boots - Haste
Back - Enchant Cloak - Greater Intellect
Bracer - Formula: Enchant Bracer - Mighty Intellect
Shoulder - Greater Inscription of Charged Lodestone
Pants - Pattern: Powerful Ghostly Spellthread
Gloves - Enchant Gloves - Haste
Weapon - Formula: Enchant Weapon - Power Torrent
Off hand - Enchant Off-Hand - Superior Intellect
The above list is the best Enchants you can have at the moment.
This section will cover all of the spells that we have and a description of what they all do. As far as rotations go i do not think it is possible to follow one pattern when healing as it really depends on the situation. The one thing i will say is you should use Holy Shock on every CD as this will provide most of your holy power. The following are the base stats for that heal and will change depending on your other stats.
Single Target Heals
All single target heals have a 40yd range.
Holy Shock - An Instant Cast spell that heals for a small amount and cost 1639 Mana. Should be used on every CD to gain Holy Power.
Holy Light - A cheap spell which heals for a small amount and cost 2810 Mana. This is best used when your party or raid are taking little damage.
Cast time 2.5 secs
Flash of Light - A very expensive spell that heals for a medium amount and cost 7260 Mana. Only use when someone is very low on health and needs quick heals.
Cast time 1.5 secs
Divine Light - Your most used Spell that heals for a large amount and cost 8197 Mana. Best used during times of heavy damage.
Cast time 2.5 secs
Lay on Hands - The most powerful spell you have that will heal a player for all of their health and does not cost any mana. This is best used as an emergency heal when either someone does something wrong and needs to be kept alive of if you run OOM. If glyphed you will also gain 10% of your total mana. Causes Forbearance on the TARGET for 1 minute.
10 minute cool down (7 if glyphed)
Holy Power spells
Holy power spells are best used when you have 3 holy power as this will be the when they are there most powerful.
Word of Glory - This is a single target spell that heals for a medium amount when used with 3 Holy Power. Used when target is takign high damage or to conserve mana.
Light of Dawn - Frontal cone spell that heals the 5 (6 if glyphed) most injured players in your raid/group.
Best used when players are close together so the heal hits as many people as it can. It has a 30 yd range and will heal yourself if you are one of the 5 most injured players in your raid.
AoE Healing Spells
If you cast a 10k heal on a dps the tank will receive an extra 5k.
That pretty much sums up all our healing spells and now i will explain a little about things you should have active at all times.
Judgement - If spec correctly you will gain 9% melee and casting haste for 1 minute after landing a successful Judgement on an enemy. If using seal of insight you will also gain 15% base mana. You should cast this on every cool down.
Conviction - Again if this is a part of your spec it will provide a 3% healing bonus each time you land a critical heal stacking up to 3 times. This effect lasts 15 seconds but will refresh with every critical heal you land.
Blessings - Blessings really depend on who is in your group but for a guide
Might provides us with an extra 326 mana regain every 5 seconds
Kings provides us with an extra 5% intellect.
They both provide other things for the group but these are what they provide to us.
This is everything you need to know about spells and abilities which will help you with your healing.
Edited by Zalandar on 28/06/11 08:54 (BST)
This final section will list all the abilities we have available to increase our healing and help save people. We have a few spells which we can cast that will help other players in a number of ways. Below you will find all of these abilities. The cool down times are assuming that have you used 2 talent points in Paragon of Virtue.
We have a unique number of abilities which we call hands. We can place a hand on a player in our raid/group that will help them in some way. You can only place one hand on a player at a time.
Hand of Salvation - Reduces threat on a player by 2% every second lasting 10 seconds. Great for dps who have over aggro the tank.
2 minute cool down
Hand of Freedom - Makes the player immune to movement impairing effects for 6 seconds. Used in most cases when a player has a slowing debuff and is stuck in bad stuff e.g fire on the floor.
25 second cool down
Hand of protection - Stops a player getting attacked for a short time but prevents them from attacking. Good for when a dps has taken aggro from the tank and you cannot heal them quick enough.
5 minute cool down and triggers Forbearance which stops you casting Lay on hands and Divine Shield for 1 minute.
Hand of sacrifice - Transfers 30% damage taken to the caster lasting 12 seconds or until 100% health has been transferred. Can be used during spells of really heavy damage to help cope with healing the target taking damage.
1.5 minute cool down
These hands can be really great if used at the correct times and should be used when the situation calls for it.
We have a number of spells which will increase our healing and can really help us through tough times. There is no best time to use these as such and as you learn your healing class more you will know when to use these.
3 minute cool down
Avenging Wrath - Increases all damage and healing done by 20% lasting 20 seconds.
2 minute cool down
Guardian of Ancient Kings - Summons a pet to heal the same target you heal for an equal amount and players within 10 yds for 10% of the amount healed. This lasts for 30 seconds or until 5 valid heals have been cast. ( Light of Dawn and Holy Radiance does not affect the pet i.e he will not do anything when these are cast)
5 minute cool down
Divine Plea - Gain 12% (18% if glyphed) of your total mana over 9 seconds but heal for 50% less while active.
2 minute cool down
Divine shield - Protect yourself from all attacks for 8 seconds. Also triggers Forbearance which stops you casting Lay on hands and Divine Shield for 2 minutes.
5 minute cool down
Aura Mastery - Causes your concentration aura to make all targets immune to silence and interrupt effects as well as increasing the effectiveness of your other auras by 100%
3 minute cool down
Divine Protection - Reduces the damage you take by 20% lasting 10 seconds.
40 second cool down
That is all of our useful abilities and you will find yourself using these more and more and you progress as a healer.
Patch 4.2 (28/6/2011)
>>Divine Light mana cost has been increased to 35% of base mana, up from 30%.
>>Flash of Light mana cost has been increased to 31% of base mana, up from 27%.
>>Holy Light mana cost has been increased to 12% of base mana, up from 10%.
>>Beacon of Light can no longer be dispelled. In addition, it now transfers 100% of the heal from Holy Light, but still 50% of the heal from other spells.
>>Holy Shock mana cost has been decreased to 7% of base mana, down from 8%.
>>Illuminated Healing (Mastery) has been adjusted slightly so that if a paladin refreshes an existing copy of his or her own Illuminated Healing on a target, the new absorption amount will be added into the old absorption amount and the duration will be reset. The total absorption created can never exceed 1/3 of the casting paladin's health.
>>Infusion of Light can now lower the cast time of Flash of Light by 0.75/1.5 seconds, in addition to Holy Light and Divine Light. In addition, the old Denounce spell overlay effect has been transferred to Infusion of Light since Denounce is no longer a proc.
>>Speed of Light now increases movement speed when Holy Radiance or Divine Protection are cast. In addition, this talent now reduces the cooldown of Holy Radiance by 13/26/40 seconds, up from 10/20/30.
>>Walk in the Light now improves Word of Glory healing by 30%, in addition to its current effects.
>>All healing critical strikes now heal for 2 times a normal heal (+100%), up from 1.5 times a normal heal (+50%).
It's nice that you are helping out fellow holy paladins that might not know it all yet, but I don't think spec / glyphs and addons is the average players main concern.
When you say guide, you should also try to add which spell to use when, and / or which spell to prioritise. This is probably what most new paladins will be wondering about, and does come to the forums to get their answers!
Otherwise well written, but you should really have 1 point in Enlightened Judgements, and remove 1 point in improved judgement. If you have somewhat decent gear you will be hit capped for PvE with only 1 point due to your spirit, and since judgement gives you mana every time you hit with your judge, this is a must.
Some errors in this "Guide" that you might want to change.
Divine Plea - Your most used Spell that heals for 11000-12500 and cost 7026 Mana. Best used during times of heavy damage.
That should be Divine Light.
Divine Plea - Gain 15% of your total mana over 15 seconds but heal for 50% less while active.
Its currently 10% over 15s and 15% if glyphed. In patch Divine Plea will be redesigned slightly to:
Divine Plea now lasts for 9 seconds, down from 15. It grants 4% mana per tick, instead of 2%, for a total of 12% mana, up from 10%..
Probably some other small errors and typos but you should be able to find them by yourself ;) gj so far though.
And you should add the patch changes such as our direct healing spell costs will be increased by 10%.
Edited by Sunami on 26/01/11 11:33 (GMT)
How i prio my stats:
1. Intellect Ofcourse.
2. Spell Power. ( 2 Spell Power = 1 Intellect ) *EDIT* To make Crystal Clear. 2 Spell Power is worth as much as 1 intellect in my eyes, not same stats or something like that. *EDIT*
Spirit VS Haste.
Haste is good since it makes you cast faster, allowing you to use Mana-Efficient Spells such as 'Holy Light' while still doing an decent amount of Healing per Second.
Spirit is good since it regains mana. This allows you to not go out of mana during longer fights. Also, since spirit will regain mana for you, you will be able to afford spells wich you couldn't use if you stacked haste since then you would go out of mana to quick.
My conclution is to take Spirit until you have a decent amount of Mana Regain. I have about 2350 Mana per Five seconds in Combat. And i do fine.
When you do not have mana problems. Haste is the way to go, over cap or not.
Edited by Zalandar on 02/02/11 18:14 (GMT)
No it is not necessary at all but if raiding its nice to have the extra 20% healing on a 2min CD instead of 3.
You could instead go for Enlightened Judgements or even Blessed life as these will both help with your healing in a small way.
Try some diffrent setups and perhaps post on this thread what you find works best for you.
Edited by Barlironfist on 03/02/11 14:30 (GMT)
I would like to add that due to some major nerfs on Light of dawn i have found it to be rather useless in raids during cataclysm because players take far more damage than it is capable of healing, instead i prefer to use word of glory and other direct heals.
Also with the expansion at the moment i found that haste does not stack as well as it should, and combined with judgements of the pure stacking crit is more effective for keeping tanks alive as it means you have more chance of larger crits, usually 42000+(divine light) with fairly good gear.
A good macro for all paladin heals should be:
/cast divine favor
/cast divine plea
/cast avenging wrath
this will pop all 3 of those spells at once, which helps greatly when used at roughly 60-70% mana, and with the cool downs they can be off cd when you really need some mana in the last crucial minute or 2 of a boss fight.
Another thing, has anyone else noted that we dont get mana over time from judgement of insight, only 4% of mana when used.
Edited by Zalandar on 04/02/11 09:49 (GMT)
Edited by Barlironfist on 03/02/11 14:30 (UTC) I would like to add that due to some major nerfs on Light of dawn i have found it to be rather useless in raids during cataclysm because players take far more damage than it is capable of healing
I found light of dawn good more for a massive heal on the beacon but have to admit i very rarely use it myself now as most encounters do not allow for it.
As said in the guide the problem with crit is the poor conversion rate
100 crit = 0.56 spell crit
Where as haste has a conversion rate of
100 haste = 0.78 Spell haste
making it mush easier to stack.
Lets put it like this, for example lets say with 0 haste and 0 crit you can cast 4 divine light in 10 secs healing for around 45k.
If we add 1000 crit and 1000 haste you can now cast 5 divine light's in 10 sec which is a guaranteed 12500 heal where as of them 5 casts you may not get any that crit.
would you rather the extra cast or the chance of getting more healing which would have to = 12500 to make it worth losing that extra heal?
This is how i weigh up haste over crit in my view and the reason i stack haste over crit at least until i git the GCD.
The above was an example and based on the base heals etc.