So you rolled a paladin. Maybe you’re tired of being squishy. Maybe you think you’ll get a chance to tank or do DPS as a change of pace on occasion (ahahaha…). Maybe, like me, you just wanted the cheap and shiny mount.
…seriously, that’s why I rolled paladin first. I wanted a free horse at 40.
So now you’re level 10 and staring at your talent trees. What now?
Paladin Specs – The Basics
Ask yourself several questions.
-What do I want to do with this character?
-Do I mostly want to heal? Do I mostly want to DPS? Do I want to tank?
-Do I want to PvP, or focus on PvE?
-Am I going to be soloing, duoing, or instancing my way to 80?
-How crazy am I?
Holy is, obviously, your healing tree. Like most healing specs, this is not recommended for leveling if you’re going to be spending a good amount of time soloing. I leveled holy. It also took me 5 minutes to kill anything. While they’ve improved things since the days of yore, questing as holy is slow(er), especially to begin with. Holy Shock later on makes things better, but I still don’t suggest this spec for the impatient sort. To steal from my priest guide: If you want to level primarily through instance groups or with a friend, holy is great. Learning as you go is a great way to get a handle on healing and you probably won’t lack for groups!
This is your tanking tree. Tankadins are great in AoE situations, and AoE grinding while you level is a method that some find entertaining. You’re durable, gearing up is no longer as much as a pain as it used to be, and you should be able to find groups. I say ‘should’ because there seems to be a superfluous number of tanks on some servers. Regardless, this is probably one of the more group and solo friendly builds.
Ret is the DPS tree. For many people it is their leveling spec of choice, and in a group it is not only excellent DPS but a welcomed addition to mana regeneration and buffs at higher levels. If you plan on doing a lot of soloing, or just love beating things in the face with a large weapon, this might be the spec for you. In hurts in PvP. A lot.
Holy: http://www.wowhead.com/?talent=sEAzxGzhVuGxRtZVf There’s a a few talents in here that are good for soloing that you’ll want to drop at 80.
Prot: http://www.wowhead.com/?talent=sZ0tVAbuMteIRhoEbM I haven’t been prot since pre-3.0 BC, and my favorite tankadin is ret as I’m writing this, so this is my best guess as to a decent prot leveling spec. It’s a few points shy of completion, but by that point, your guess as to where they go is as good as mine.
Ret: http://www.wowhead.com/?talent=sZ0eMZVfrt0IucrsguAo This is basically my GMs build with some alternate points in prot.
Holy: Auto attack.
…what, you wanted more than that? Fine. Seal of Righteous, judge Wisdom on CD. Consecration on lager groups helps, as does ret aura. At 40 you get Holy Shock, which when used every CD hurts the mobs a good bit. Don’t forget your Hammer of Wrath when they’re low.
Ret: Seal of Command + Judgment (of Light, usually), Crusader Strike (level 50+), Divine Storm (level 60+), Consecrate, Hammer of Wrath when able.
So yes, lower level ret pallying is Judgment and Consecrate on CD and nap.
Prot: When talking about an attack rotation in this case, I’m thinking of soloing, not tanking. Anyway. Toss on ret aura, and use Blessing of Sanctuary once you have it. Improved RF is handy to have up thanks to the damage mitigation. Use Seal of Light and Judge Wisdom for longevity, or use Righteousness/Vengeance and judge Light if you’re not worried about your mana. Judgement + Holy Shield + Consecrate (on groups) + Hammer of Wrath on low health mobs. At higher levels, chucking your Captain America Shield into the rotation helps as well.
Holy is looking for: int, spellpower, and crit. Mp5 is fine if it’s on there, really.
Prot is looking for: stm, str, and defense. Avoidance stats at higher level: parry, dodge, block.
Ret is looking for: str, AP, crit, hit at later levels. Grab a slower, higher-damage two handed weapon.