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    1. #1
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      4.3.4 Protection Paladin and GENERAL TANKING Guide

      4.3.4 Protection Paladin and GENERAL TANKING Guide

      Remember that this guide is specific to the wow mortal server!

      Small key/legend:
      The '>' icon means 'greater than'.
      So [3 > 2] means that 3 is greater than 2. [Crusader Strike > Judgement] means to use Crusader Strike before Judgement

      This is my first guide written so please don't be too harsh if the formatting or whatever isn't perfect. I feel a need to address some things because pretty much every single tank on wow mortal is greatly misinformed about the following:
      - Tank DPS rotations
      - Tank gear optimization and stat priorities

      I will be covering:
      - Talents/glyphs
      - Races
      - Gemming/enchanting/reforging
      - Professions
      - BiS items and item comparisons
      - Things to keep in mind

      Firstly I will cover the basic concept of tanking and some information.
      The greatest misinformation of all time: What is CTC?
      CTC is combat table coverage. What this means is that once your CTC is 102.40% every single boss hit on you will be either a parry, dodge, block or miss. So let me explain more about CTC. Every single boss has a 5.00% chance to miss on you with his autoattack.

      So how can I optimally reach this CTC cap of 102.40%?

      Since the boss has a passive 5.00% chance to miss you that means that you will need 97.40% extra avoidance. Together this adds up to 102.40%
      Avoidance: (parry %) + (dodge %) + (block %) + (miss 5.00%)
      CTC% is the most important thing for every tank, because even one crushing autoattack from the boss at the wrong time can be lethal. This generally means that the tank will be taking consistent damage and not taking any hard hit spikes due to not being CTC capped.

      So now an important thing to note...
      Mastery provides block chance. So how do parry, dodge and mastery points differ in value? How do I know, which is better?
      Attachment 5942
      On my protection paladin, these stats are 68.00% block + 16.10% parry + 13.85% dodge, which adds up to 97.95% + 5.00%. This is a total of 102.95% CTC, which means I am CTC capped.

      Now you maybe be wondering why my parry and dodge are so low compared to my block. Especially since block only blocks 30% of the incoming melee boss damage and while parry and dodge avoid 100% of the damage. Now to explain this, blocking 30% of the boss autoattack damage is going to be enough for the healers to keep you up almost all the time. For times where it isn't enough, you have defensive cooldowns to rotate.

      - Holy shield - Causes your block to block 50.00% of damage instead of 30.00%
      - Divine protection - Raw 20.00% melee reduction (unless glyphed)
      - Guardian of Ancient Kings - Raw 50% damage reduction
      - Ardent Defender - Raw 20.00% damage reduction and a cheat death ability
      - Word of Glory - 20 second cooldown self heal with 70k crits at 3 holy power
      - Divine Shield - immune to all damage but lose all agro
      - Lay on Hands - 100.00% hp heal

      Mastery vs dodge and parry
      Now I'll explain why mastery points have a greater value than parry and dodge. Some of you may be familiar with the term 'diminishing returns'.

      This term refers to a point at which the level of benefit gained from an extra unit of value is decreased with every other extra unit of value.

      If this sounds confusing let me explain in a simple manner. As you get more dodge rating points, the % dodge rating gained per point will decrease. This applies to parry as well. HOWEVER it does not apply to mastery, which provides block chance. Therefore it is a lot easier to reach CTC cap while gemming into mastery and reforging into mastery values.

      Before I get into gemming and reforging I need to explain the value of STAMINA. Stamina is obviously an important stat for tanks but it is HEAVILY overated by most tanks on wow mortal.
      The general believed stamina 'cap' for end game cataclysm PvE is from 10,000 - 11,000 stamina points. With this and raid buffs you should be able to reach around 205,000 hit points, which is well enough for healers to keep you alive.

      I need to stress that 50 stamina gives 500 hit points. While 50 mastery gives around 0.50% block (the block value might be a little wrong as I am too lazy to check it right now).

      To convince you all about this fact. Take it like this...
      A stamina stacking tank with ~70.00% avoidance who has 250k HP. He seems invincible with that HP no? Well 32.40% of all boss autoattacks will hit him for crushing damage.
      So in a scenario where there is no healer and the boss hits the tank, that tank with 250k HP and 70.00% avoidance will die faster than a tank with 215k HP and 102.40% avoidance in a perfect RNG situation.
      Additionally it is more 'mana-taxing' to heal a tank with high HP and if that tank is at 50.00% HP it will be harder for the healers to instantly top his HP back to full. You can expect any tank with stamina gems to be a poor tank and misinformed about their class.

      So... I am CTC capped, but I have so much extra free gem slots, what do I do with them?
      After you reach CTC cap and at least 10,000 stamina points:
      First priority is 8.00% hit cap, this means none of your abilities will miss the boss.
      Second priority is expertise cap of 26, this means that the boss will not dodge your attacks.
      ^^^These two are the best form of DPS increase to help gain and keep agro^^^

      What after I am capped?
      However... most tanks with good gear will still have extra gem slots even if they reach all the caps. At that point there are two options:
      - Go into stamina (survivability)
      - Go into strength (better agro and more damage)

      Personally I prefer going into strength (trust me strength is better) because I never encounter boss fights where lack of stamina would be the reason for a wipe. Therefore going TOO tanky could just be a waste of stats.


      We all know the 5.00% stamina buff that taurens have. It isn't great but it surely is a good option if you are going horde.

      Blood Elf
      The biggest pro of this race is that isn't ugly and we all know that a good transmog and nice looking character makes you play better xd. Other than that it has a silence, which isn't too useful and doesn't work on onyxia.

      Humans are nothing special for tanks and don't really provide anything useful except a break-cc or so called 'trinket'. You can use it break for example onyxia fear.

      Good race for paladins as the racial heal can used as a defensive cooldown.

      Talents and Glyphs:

      [Judgements of the Just] 0/2 because the talent does not work on bosses and is currently bugged.
      [Hallowed Ground] 1/2 because Consecration is used as a 'filler' ability and the mana cost reduction by 40.00% is enough to not get you oom.
      [Guarded by the Light] 1/2 since [Word of Glory] is a good defensive heal in rough situations. You can swap a talent from [Hallowed Ground] here if you like.

      In major glyphs. you can also opt into the [Long Word] Glyph, which makes your Word of Glory heal 50.00% less initially but 50.00% more over 6 seconds.


      This is a MUST HAVE proffesion as it grants 2 extra sockets, which is a potential if +100 mastery.

      Since there are no good bracer enchants, and the best one being +50 dodge (which is terrible), leatherworking grants a +195 stamina enchant on your bracers.

      This is for DPS reasons ONLY. Because the best cloak enchant is +250 armor, tailoring grants a 1,000 attack power 10 second buff at a ~50 internal cooldown (if wrong I will fix later). However do not look into tailoring unless you have at least 405 item level.

      All the other proffesions are bad and mediocre.


      Gemming is a very very gray area that most people do not understand. So first let me just show socket priorities:
      Yellow socket: [50 Mastery] > [25 dodge/parry, 25 mastery] or [25 strength, 25 mastery]
      Red socket: [25 dodge/parry, 25 mastery] or [25 strength, 25 mastery] or [50 strength]
      Blue socket: [25 hit, 25 mastery] > [37 stamina, 25 mastery]

      Now the part that almost no one understands. Socket bonuses. When to go for the socket bonuses and when to ignore them.
      - Generally blue sockets are bad. You want to avoid gear with blue sockets as much as you can.
      - Generally stamina socket bonuses are bad and you do not want them
      I hope you get the idea here. Parry/dodge/mastery socket bonuses are good and are worth going for.

      Note that if you feel like survivability is no problem for you. You can go into more [50 strength] gems and you will see yourself doing a lot more DPS.

      Head: 60 strength 35 mastery
      Shoulders: 75 stamina 25 dodge
      Cloak: 250 armor
      Chest: 75 stamina
      Bracers: 195 stamina
      Hands: 65 mastery
      Legs: 145 stamina 55 dodge
      Boots: 50 mastery or 50 hit
      Weapon: Landslide (windwalk is better for tanks with worse gear)
      Shield: 50 mastery

      Further justification for why strength is good for protection paladins
      In comparison to protection warriors, normally a warrior has much stronger DPS than a protection paladin. We can be talking in even 2x more DPS from a protection warrior. Therefore I see a need for stacking [50 Strength] gems in red sockets and opt into dps once you have reached all your caps.

      Furtherly... protection warriors can pump a huge amount of damage really fast onto the boss to gain agro really fast. Paladins need to build up damage. You can sometimes see some classes doing 90k dps or even more in their opener, this can be difficult to keep agro on unless you have opting into more strength.


      Previously I already mentioned what 'dimishing returns' are and how they work with parry and dodge. If you can't remember go re-read that part.
      If you item does not have mastery on it, you will want to reforge dodge or parry into mastery. If that item has both dodge and parry, you will want to reforge the stat, which is higher into mastery. So if you have an item with gives parry and dodge and you have 17.00% parry but 14.00% dodge, you want to reforge parry into mastery.
      Addionally, if an item of yours has mastery and parry and you have 17.00% parry and 14.00% dodge or when your parry is greater than your dodge, you will want to reforge that parry into dodge because of diminishing returns. Your goal is to make your parry % = dodge %.

      Sorry if this is hard to understand so I will explain it again simpler.
      Your stats: 17.00% parry, 13.50% dodge
      Your item: 190 mastery, 205 parry ---- How do I reforge this?
      You will reforge 205 parry --> dodge

      Still confused why? This is because your parry % is higher than your dodge so you gain less parry % per point of parry than you do dodge. For this reason you want your parry % to equal your dodge % as best as you can.

      BiS (Absolutely best in slot paladin tank gear)

      Item slot Item name Boss drop
      Head Faceguard of Radiant Glory (prot paladin set) Onyxia
      Neck Guardspike Choker SSC last boss
      Shoulders Pauldrons of Radiant Glory (ret paladin set) Onyxia
      Cape Dreamcrusher Drape (hit rating) SSC last boss
      Chest Chestguard of Radiant Glory (prot paladin set) Onyxia
      Bracers Graveheart Bracers SSC 2nd boss
      Hands Handguards of Radiant Glory (prot paladin set) Onyxia
      Waist Gorionna's Collar SSC 1st boss
      Legs Legplates of Radiant Glory (ret paladin set) Onyxia
      Feet Stillheart Warboots SCC 4th boss
      Ring 1 Hardheart Ring OR Breathstealer Band SSC 4th boss
      Ring 2 Curled Twilight Claw SSC 4th boss
      Trinket 1 Eye of the Unmaking OR Mirror of Broken Images !-! IF YOU HAVE BAD GEAR Soulshifter Vortex will be better SSC 5th boss
      Trinket 2 Indomitable Pride SSC 5th boss
      Weapon Souldrinker (for dps) !-! IF YOU HAVE BAD GEAR Hand of Morchok for extra mastery with a [50 mastery] gem slot as well 1650 VP
      Shield Blackhorn's Mighty Bulwark 950 VP
      Relic Stoutheart Talisman 700 VP

      Ret 2 set: The two set allows your judgement to give you holy power. This gives A LOT more damage and allows you to also use word of glory more freely. Not only that but ret shoulders and legs also grant mastery, which I talked about previously and why mastery is better than dodge and parry.

      The second tank ring does not grant mastery therefore it is a terrible ring. But use it if you don't have any other.

      Now many people use Soulshifter Vortex even though this trinket GIVES ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. The mastery proc is basically stats into the air because you already have CTC cap. Therefore the proc is 100% useless. The trinket only gives 775 stamina (7,750 hp), which you do not need unless you have bad gear.
      I opt into Eye of the Unmaking because 990 strength is HUGE just solely for DPS purposes.

      Mirror of Broken Images
      Mirror of Broken Images is the most underated item IN THE GAME. Not only it gives ~4.00% extra block chance but it reduces magic damage by ~50% for 10 seconds on a 60 second cooldown. Very good for SSC and for Onyxia.
      -Reduces damage taken from Flame Breath if not interrupted and Fireball as well

      -Every single boss in SSC uses magic spells, especially the 1st boss.

      Resolve of the Undying
      This trinket grants 990 dodge after you get hit by the boss 10 times.
      Now that itself, isn't bad but of course it isn't great either. The problem with this trinket is that it needs to stack up. Therefore if you die and get combat resurrected, the first couple hits from the boss will be deadly because the trinket is not stacked, this greately devalues the trinket. In addition it grants approximately 3.00-4.00% dodge chance and nothing else.
      I will not stress this enough, paladins have a huge survivability kit and do not need useless mitigation, opt into damage instead. It is not bad for starters but Soulshifter Vortex is better, for starter gear paladins.


      On single target and all bosses you will ALWAYS use [Seal of Truth]. In dungeons on AoE (area of effect) you can use [Seal of Righteousness]
      Do not forget to use your tank buff [Righteous Fury]
      Generally the best aura will be [Retribution Aura]. However on fights where you might take a lot of melee damage such as Morchok or Warlord Zon'ozz (bosses in Dragon Soul), you can use [Devotion Aura] around for ~4300 armor.

      Special case: Onxyia
      Use [Resistance Aura] to reduce fire damage for the entire raid


      When to use Taunt?

      Many tanks are confused about this, taunt is a 8 second cooldown ability which makes the boss attack you for 3 seconds. If you are lacking gear, you might lose agro until you get off your 3 Holy Power [Shield of Righteousness] hit, that means that about 2 seconds after you open, you can use taunt so you don't lose agro until you cast [Shield of Righteousness].

      Further tips... always watch your target's target frame and if the boss suddenly targets a different player, that means that you potentially lose agro and you have to use taunt as soon as possible, this is most important to watch for during the boss opener.
      You can also use taunt right after you use bubble (Divine Shield), which grants you 3 more seconds of boss agro. Good on the 1st boss of SSC, where if you get stunned and you know you will die 100%.

      Did you know that a protection paladin actually has a 2nd aoe taunt?
      This taunt, [Righteous Defense] works well on bosses like Onyxia when you need to taunt multiple whelps at once. It is very good since it also has a 8 second cooldown.

      Rotation explanation
      Your main damage abilities are:
      - Crusader Strike (single target)
      - Hammer of Righteousness (aoe, at least 3 targets)
      - Avenger's Shield
      - Judgement
      - Shield of Righteousness (biggest damage) - only use at 3 holy power

      You want to use all of these abilities on cooldown. However, what happens when all of these abilities are on cooldown? These abilities are called 'filler' abilities.
      In that case your spell priority is...
      Above 20.00% boss hp [Consecration] > [Holy Wrath]
      Under 20.00% boss hp [Hammer of Wrath] > [Consecration] > [Holy Wrath]

      Shield of Righteousness
      Whenever you cast Judgement or Avenger's Shield you have a 50.00% to gain a buff for 10 seconds, which makes your next Shield of Righteousness crit 100%. In full gear with wings and strength pot this crits ~125k.

      Divine Guardian
      Reduces all damage taken by your raid members (not including you) by 20%. Good for Morchok Stomp ability.

      Normal rotation:
      3 Holy Power Shield of Righteousness > Crusader Strike > Judgement > Avenger's Shield

      Boss opener and dps rotation
      1. Prepot 1200 strength
      2. Avenger's Shield
      3. Avenging Wrath
      4. Continue with normal rotation

      Divine Plea
      A useful macro is
      /cancelaura divine plea

      What Divine Plea does, is that it grants you 3 holy power instantly but reduces your healing taken by 50.00%, which is why you use the macro above. You can use this holy power for:
      - Word of Glory
      - Shield of Righteousness
      - Inquisition

      Inquisition is an underrated spell for protection paladins, which grants 30.00% dmg for 4 seconds for each holy power, so 12 seconds at 3 holy power and is good when combined with [Avenging Wrath] and 1200 strength potion. This is also good to use when you do not have vengeance stacked up from mob/boss auto attacks.
      How do use this you might wonder? You can use divine plea to gain 3 holy power during your DPS cooldowns to do 170k crits with [Shield of Righteousness].

      Hand of Sacrifice
      Good to use during Morchok on stomp on some melee like a warrior or dk. If you use this on someone make sure you also use the spell [Divine Protection] or [Guardian of Ancient Kings] so you don't get 1 shot.

      Hand of Protection (bop)
      Good to use during Morchok on stomp on some melee, which will make that melee immune to the stomp damage.

      Q: Are there any other useful macros?
      A: Not really

      Q: Will you make a protection warrior guide?
      A: Yes, soon. (probably)

      If you have any other questions, don't hesitate to ask me in-game. My characters are:
      - Goodw
      - Hylix
      - Tankw
      - Lfx
      - Shaxey
      - Blindirl

      I hope this helps
      Attached Images Attached Images
      Last edited by shaxey; 07-22-2017 at 04:05 AM.

    2. Likes Crackweaselx, Drvosjecaa, Skrang liked this post
    3. #2
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      Bit confusing at times but overall nice guide.

      Well done!

    4. #3
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      One thing I forgot to add to races was dwarf. They basically have a 10% dmg reduction cooldown, id say drainei are better though

    5. #4
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      BEST Guide so far gj

    6. #5
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      Gj Goodw nice guilde.

    7. #6
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      Great guide as i told you already. Very complete / informative and adapted to the server.
      Good job dude !

    8. #7
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      is r1 warrior 406/r1 hpala 4.3.4
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      Best guide for prot paladins i have ever seen on this server, I really like the fact you added extra stuff for where you can find this gear, really will help new paladin prot tanks.

      Tbf i am thinking about making a hpala guide but you know there is a much better hpala than me out there.

    9. #8
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      Yeah, no complaints here. I didn't even come to think of a CTC cap to begin with, and all in all you covered the base points pretty well

    10. #9
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      Very nice guide. Keep up the good work.

    11. #10
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      decent guide good work mate

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