This guide is centered around the Holy Paladin in the 2v2 bracket. I’m writing from the perspective of Paladin/Warrior, but the principles in this guide can be applied to other comps such as Paladin/Warlock or even the 3v3 bracket.
As most players know, Holy Paladin is one of the easiest and most straightforward classes of level 80 arena. However, there are a few things the player should keep in mind if they want to be successful:
Absolutely critical. The player should instinctively know how far their teammate and opponents are. It’s so important that I have my UI set up to show enemy/friendly range in this way:
This lets me easily adjust my range as needed. I find the cleanse highlight especially helpful. While some may see this setup as overkill, I think with how few things there are to master as a Paladin, things like this set a good Paladin apart from a great one.
The cornerstone of Paladin mana efficiency is the monitoring of buffs.
We are lucky to have one of the most mana-efficient buffs in the game: Blessing of Kings. With glyph, it costs 131 mana to apply it. With the cost of offensive dispels (405 minimum for Dispel, 329 minimum for Purge) it’s very inexpensive to rebuff compared to Druids or Priests.
Next is Sacred Shield (SS). While against most teams it’s often the best decision to immediately rebuff SS, this may not always be the case against others. Rogue/Priest, for example, is not a stream of constant damage: it comes in cycles as the Rogue’s combo points are built. So if you’re weighing the decision of rebuffing SS, consider the following:
Final tip: if you are in danger of having your Divine Plea dispelled (or mass dispelled), take advantage of the potential magic buffs you can put on yourself. Some may not be worth it depending on the situation, but it’s important to know that you could potentially have 9 buffs covering Divine Plea:
The 9th buff would be SS absorb, not shown here. Divine Sac has one magic buff.
Paladins are probably one of the classes least affected by the efficiency of binds. However, a few of your binds need to be in a place they can be immediately used. Rebuffing in particular is a task that needs to be done as fast as possible, since every second counts when trying to keep up with the insane amount of haste many dispelling/debuff applying classes use.
The following are the binds I use. Some are really awkward and I wouldn’t recommend them. Use at your own peril!
Binds not displayed-
F – Target Party1
Z – apply/clear focus
Shift+G – Dispel party1
Tilde(`) – target self
Scroll click – cancel divine plea and freedom (both for Mages)
If you are changing your binds and need some ideas not shown above, a few I would suggest are shift or ctrl+scroll up/down, shift+tilde. Also important is that it’s generally a bad idea to bind anything beyond number 6, and NEVER use action pages.
Cleanse teammate: This is displayed in the range screenshot to keep your teammate’s range in mind without targeting them.
/cast [@party1] cleanse
Purify teammate: Useful against Spriest/Rogue and Warlock/Rogue particularly. Use Purify to keep up Sacred Cleansing and dispel poison/disease without dispelling Unstable Affliction or Vampiric Touch if in danger of falling behind due to the extra damage/silence.
/cast [@party1] purify
Cancel Divine Plea/Hand of Freedom: Another situational macro. Your teammate should also have this for Hand of Protection and Hand of Freedom. It’s arguable whether you should cancel Divine Plea if both Mage and other dispeller are both stripping you, but chances are it’s safest to click it off in any low-buff situation to avoid feeding the enemy Mage mana.
/cancelaura divine plea
/cancelaura hand of freedom
I use the following talent spec against all teams except War/Pal mirrors:
I’ll mention how my spec differs from some that I have seen:
First: I normally don’t spec Pure of Heart because curse duration against Shaman and Warlock teams is often less important in 2v2 than other talents, and Warrior/Paladin technically shouldn’t lose to setups with either of these classes in 2v2. If you’re having a very hard time against these two classes in particular, you should drop 2 points from Divine Intellect for Pure of Heart.
Second: I NEVER spec Light’s Grace. This talent used to have value before resilience was buffed in Season 6: Paladins often needed to cast Holy Light even against a single damage class. Currently, Holy Light has very few practical uses overall: during Aura Mastery (ONLY if your opponents have no means to stop the cast – blind, scatter…), during Divine Shield, or while pillaring for a single heal cast as the healing debuff is about to fade, or while you have an Infusion of Light proc active and can get a full cast on your teammate, such as a War/Pal mirror or against Disc/Rogue. While HL is still technically the highest HP/s of any Paladin heal, it’s still best to put these points elsewhere.
Third: I see many Paladins picking 5/5 Holy Guidance over 5/5 Judgements of the Pure (most specs have 3/5 of one). Consider the following, for two talent points:
At 1100 intellect, you gain 45 SP per point of Holy Guidance, so 90 SP for 2 talent points or roughly 4 gems. It takes about 200 haste rating for 6% haste (2 points of JoTP) – about 10 gems’ worth.
Hopefully this puts the comparison in perspective.
If I know I’m going against a mirror, I will change to my second spec with 2 points added to Blessed Life and 1 point added to Holy Guidance (3 points removed from Sacred Cleansing. SC’s only value in a mirror is the chance to resist Hammer from cleansing judge debuff, which is less valuable than the 8% chance for half damage taken).
Glyph of Holy Shock
This is used vs all teams except Disc/Frost teams that focus entirely on mana burn (Replace with Glyph of Cleanse)
Glyph of Seal of Light
Best seal glyph for random queueing (Replace with Glyph of Seal of Wisdom against War/Pal mirrors, Disc/Mutilate, Disc/Frost for mana conservation only)
Glyph of Hammer of Justice
Useful for high latency players who have trouble landing Hammer before Psychic Scream, etc… very convenient glyph to reduce time spent exposing yourself (Replace with Glyph of Salvation for any team that tends to focus you, highly recommended for War/Pal mirrors)
Glyph of the Wise
Glyph of Blessing of Kings
Glyph of Blessing of Wisdom – if you do battlegrounds a lot, replace this with Glyph of Lay on Hands
Keep in mind that the PvP bracers, boots, and belt have no crit. These items should be the first place you swap PvE gear in if you choose to
Enchants: 5/5 Wrathful Mainset – SP/Resil helm/shoulder enchants. SP/stamina to legs, SP to gloves and bracer.
It’s a good idea to have the haste/mp5 PVP neck+cape in your bags. Swap to haste neck/cape for double DPS, mp5 neck/cape strictly for disc/frost focused on mana burn. Haste is also great in limited numbers against Warlock/Healer, but don’t sacrifice too much crit or mp5 for it.
with Crypt Keeper’s Bracers (crit/haste) to swap. There are unfortunately no good crit/mp5 PvE pieces
with Lich Killer’s Lanyard (crit/haste) available to swap. Waistband of Righteous Fury (crit/mp5) is another good choice, but it’s unfortunately not available on AT.
with Ancient Skeletal Boots (crit/mp5) available to swap. Earthsoul Boots (crit/haste) are another great choice.
Other rings to swap: Ring of Rapid Ascent (crit/haste), Incarnadine Band of Mending (crit/mp5)… Signet of Putrefaction+Marrowgar’s Frigid Eye (haste/mp5) are perfect rings to use against Disc/Frost.
With Libram of Blinding Light to swap for 2 DPS teams ONLY.
With Lockjaw (haste/mp5) to swap.
with Wrathful Gladiator’s Redoubt and Bulwark of Smouldering Steel to swap.
The above three are especially valuable since they can be swapped in the middle of a game.
(if Human): Heroic Solace of the Defeated by default, with Scale of Fates to swap if you know you’re about to play against a 2 dps team.
Bauble of True Blood by default, with normal Solace to swap for Disc/Rogue or Warrior/Paladin mirror. If your server doesn’t have normal Solace, replace with Sliver of Pure Ice, or Purified Lunar Dust as a last resort.
With Kings up:
3360 Spell Power
188 Haste Rating
29.2% Spell Crit
Gemming as a Paladin is very much dependent on the teams you play against and struggle with. For example, this past season of AT’s 2v2 had a high percent of 2 DPS teams and Warrior/Paladins in the top 25. There were very few Disc/Rogue and Disc/Frost teams, so Intellect gems had a much lower value than they would normally have. So, the best choice for this would be spell power gems. Keep in mind that by using 23 SP gems, you lose 1 point of SP compared to Int/SP, but if int is valueless, this is still the best route to max SP (within reason):
Aggressive focus, less efficient, higher burst healing
Red: Sp (Runed Cardinal Ruby)
Blue: Sp/Mp5 (Royal Dreadstone)
Yellow: Int/Sp (Luminous Ametrine)
(For this setup, I skip socket bonuses in Glove and Shoulder (2 mp5) in favor of red gems.)
Passive focus, more efficient, lower burst healing
Red: Int/Sp (Luminous Ametrine)
Blue: Int/Mp5 (Dazzling Eye of Zul)
Yellow: Int/Sp (Luminous Ametrine)
For either model: don’t be afraid to gem resilience in yellow slots. This is often necessary against some teams.
For ALL setups, use mana restore meta (Insightful Earthsiege Diamond).
-10% Silence duration meta(Forlorn Skyflare Diamond) is helpful to have on another helm if you struggle against Spriest/X teams.
I tried to keep this guide fairly basic and I feel that I’ve barely scratched the surface. If you have any questions about specific matchups, gear to use, or elaboration on any section of this guide, please send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll be happy to help.