Letter response – ret paladins in raids

I got an email the other day, and I”m going to post a small part and then my response because, well, I found it interesting.

The relevant portion goes:

I was wondering, with your raid experience, how do you feel about retribution paladins in a group? Are they not worth the space they take up

As I wrote in response, I do not play a paladin, so take all advice from me with appropriate blocks of salt.  That said,

My base rule is that if it’s fun for you, do it.  But when your fun intersects with other folks’ fun… balances happen.

My personal opinion of ret paladins in a raid group (at high level) is that as long as they’re doing what the raid needs, they’re fine.  Let me expand that a bit.

As a paladin, regardless of spec, there are a few things you can bring to the party.  Those are your auras and blessings.  Those are desired enough that “any paladin will do”.  But beyond that there are limited slots, and those slots fall into the three basic roles:  tank, heal, and dps.  As a ret paladin, you’re competing for the dps slot.

If you’re the only paladin available, you’re given some slack because of the unique extras you can bring.  This is why the shadow priest with a nominal DPS rate of ~400 is acceptable — they’re the mana battery.  If others can bring your extras – if there are healadins and tankadins available – then you will be weighed almost wholly on what you can do for DPS.

In this case, if you cannot average at least 500 DPS, you’re not going to be accepted (most of the time) for Kara raids.  And to go further, your DPS needs comparable increases.

On the other hand if you CAN average that DPS, then there is (in my opinion) absolutely NO reason to be excluded beyond “basic prejudice” – ignorance codified, really.

So, at least 400 DPS (maybe down to 350) if you’re the only one bringing paladin auras and blessings, and 500 as a floor if you’re one of several paladins available.  It’s not the class, it’s what the player brings to the party that matter.

Go have fun.


~ by Kirk on May 22, 2008.

2 Responses to “Letter response – ret paladins in raids”

  1. I just wanted to add my two cents to the topic regarding Retribution Paladins in raids (NOT parties).

    I can tell you that a number of high end Guilds (T6ish) do add a Ret Pally to their DPS corps. Not only for the extra aura or blessings, but primarily due to the talented Seal of Crusader. When Judged, it adds an extra 3% chance to crit for the entire RAID.

    In addition, Crusader Strike allows a Paladin to refresh ALL judgements on a target. So you can get 2 Holy Paladins to light up a Wisdom and Light on a mob before falling back into position and then getting the the Ret Paladin to continue using Crusader Strike to keep those buffs live.

    Lastly, having Improved Sanctity Aura increases a party’s output damage by 2%. A lot of people write that off, but when you’re DPS is in the mid thousands in you party, that 2% adds up across 5 players fairly quickly.

  2. I concur Matticus, the 400/500 DPS floors are great, but where in there do you add in the “invisible DPS” that a Ret paladin brings to the entire raid. Where is the balance?

    I think far too often the skills of a class are over looked because of some WWS report that may or may not properly reflect what you actually brought to the raid as a whole.

    This is whole other rant all together though about the evil/good that is the WWS report.

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