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Posts with tag retribution-paladin-the-light-and-how-to-swing-it

The Light and How to Swing It: Paladining at BlizzCon

The Light and How to Swing It Paladining at BlizzCon

Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Wow, what a weekend. Not only was the convention a lot of fun but it was great to meet fellow paladins and non-paladins alike. Most of my time was spent meeting people, watching panels, and playing demos. Amidst the chaos I didn't allocate much time to mulling things over, how the proposed changes in Warlords of Draenor would affect how I, and so many other ret paladins, approach the game, so now that I've had a decent night's sleep and my liver is mostly alcohol-free, I'm spending my day off in blessedly quiet reflection.

We didn't see much of any class discussion this year, and unless I missed an entire panel there wasn't a single paladin-related question throughout the entire convention. There are some big questions that it would be nice to have answered, like the permanency of holy power, the relative weights of our stats, the deletion of the warlock class, etc. We did get a few overall changes, changes that will affect ret in turn, so let's see how some of these could impact our day-to-day facesmashing in Warlords of Draenor.

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Filed under: Paladin, BlizzCon, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: Retribution after patch 5.4

The Light and How to Swing It Retribution after patch 54
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Back in June (Wow, seriously? Tempus fugit, I suppose.) I shared my thoughts on some of the changes coming in patch 5.4. As is typical for me when it comes to change, I was a bit harsh in some of my pre-judgments and, now that we are well into the newest content Blizzard has to offer, I'd like to revisit a few of those points.

Inquisition's longer duration
Originally I was not very happy about this change. I felt that maintaining a relatively shorter duration buff was part of what distinguished a "good" ret paladin from a "bad" one, as if squeezing out a tiny amount of extra DPS would make a dramatic difference in performance, and that making it easier to maintain would make the spec utterly boring and unchallenging.

Boy, was I wrong. It took some getting used to at first, for as Inquisition's duration doubled the WeakAura bar that I used to track it remained the same, resulting in far too many early refreshes than I care to admit. But after the honeymoon I had settled into our new relationship pretty well. It may only be an additional 30 seconds, but it did wonders for setting my mind at ease when I went to refresh it.

I still wonder if this is where the devs will stop with it, or if they'll eventually make it passive or allow other abilities to extend its duration (essentially making it passive anyway). I would like to think that Blizzard has learned a great deal from how much tanks are enjoying active mitigation and realize that, on the whole, "active" is fun whereas "passive" is not.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: Strength DPS gear in Siege of Orgrimmar

The Light and How to Swing It Strength DPS gear in Siege of Orgrimmar WED
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

A new patch means more gear, and more gear means another gear list. Let's get to it before I change my mind and write about how awful it was trying to solo Valithria Dreamwalker in 10-man heroic Icecrown Citadel as holy -- I still can't shake the nightmares.

Unless otherwise noted, the following gear can be found within the Siege of Orgrimmar raid. Non-tier pieces appear in normal, warforged, heroic, and heroic warforged varieties, similar to the gearing scheme in Throne of Thunder.

Oh, and although I covered Siege of Orgrimmar two-handed strength weapons in a previous article, I will briefly repeat their drop locations for the sake of completeness.

Head
Helm of the Night Watchman – drops from the Spoils of Pandaria encounter.
Thranok's Shattering Helm – drops from Galakras.
Helmet of Winged Triumph – token drops from Thok the Bloodthirsty.
Magdalena's Murderous Crown – drops from Ordos on the Timeless Isle, and named after death knight theorycrafter and community member Magdalena.

Neck
Juggernaut's Ignition Keys – drops from Iron Juggernaut.
Malkorok's Tainted Dog Tags – drops from Malkorok.
Anafielle's Spiked Choker – drops from Ordos on the Timeless Isle, and named after ret paladin theorycrafter and community member Anafielle.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Weapons and stats for ret paladins in Siege of Orgrimmar

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Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Weapons have always been my favorite piece of gear. They're iconic and powerful; they define our spec more clearly than any spell or ability. So when I stepped into Throne of Thunder and finally saw Zerat, Malakk's Soulburning Greatsword drop, I took one look at my aging Shin'ka, Execution of Dominion, a pale copy of its normal and heroic variants, and quickly tossed the axe aside. And then did the same thing to Zerat when we saw Uroe, Harbinger of Terror drop from Lei Shen. And again when a heroic Greatsword of Frozen Hells gracefully tumbled from the heavens and landed on the corpse of Horridon, nestled in whatever pockets or pouches or sacs a massive direhorn may have.

As patch 5.4 and the Siege of Orgrimmar loom on the horizon, some exciting and deadly instruments wait to be plundered. Since this will (okay, might) be the final raid of the expansion, now is a good time to reexamine our stat weights before we make any judgment calls on the bludgeons that those savages have to offer.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

3 things retribution paladins should borrow from windwalkers

3 things retribution paladins should pick up from windwalkers
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

After about a dozen or so failed attempts, I am finally leveling a monk. I'm not sure I could even tell you why I failed to push myself past level 20, but almost every jade-colored Grid square I had started would eventually meet the business end of the word "Delete" before learning how to ride a bike.

Now I am jabbing and kicking my way into Outland and, somewhat shamefully, am having a complete blast. I almost feel bad that my weekly playtime on the monk is exceeding that of my paladin by a significant margin, though after reading through the forums and seeing many posters make comparisons between ret paladins and windwalker monks, I don't feel quite as bad.

Indeed, in many ways my monk reminds me of my paladin -- a melee class using a secondary resource reminiscent of combo points and maintaining a damage-increasing buff feels right at home. Still, though, there are a number of major differences between the specs, enough to make me a little jealous of what monks have that paladins don't.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: Retribution in 5.4

The Light and How to Swing It Retribution in 54
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Earlier last week we got our first glimpse of the 5.4 PTR as Wowhead and MMO-Champion mined a massive amount of data from the latest update to the test realms. With new features like virtual realms, proving grounds, and flex raids, it's easy to be overwhelmed. As for myself, the first thing I did was hit Ctrl+F and searched for "Paladin" to see what, if any, changes we were due. Truth be told, I wasn't expecting a whole lot of changes for retribution -- we seem to be in a nice place, comfortably in the middle of the pack for DPS with heaps of utility to boot. Boy, was I mistaken.

Before we get into the discussion, do remember that none of these proposed changes are finalized. The "test realms" aren't named that by chance; the developers want to see how things like this play out on a large scale, larger than their internal testing can accommodate, and sift through player feedback from the community. So while we shouldn't get too worked up over one thing or another on the PTR, it's always beneficial to react to changes, at least in a civilized and logical manner.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Mists of Pandaria

Two great things about the contemporary ret paladin

The Light and How to Swing It These are some of my favorite things
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Patch 5.3 has turned out to be a great time to be a ret paladin. Well, in my opinion it's always a great time to be a ret paladin, but this new patch and the changes it brought with it really drive the point home. Granted, the only change we saw was a buff to our weapon-based damage via Sword of Light, which, while being a welcome boost to our DPS, isn't necessarily the most earth-shattering, game-changing thing in all of Azeroth. Still though, it opens some doors and allows us to be more competitive in the DPS game.

I have to admit, my inspiration for this column came from reading Matt Rossi's warrior column, The Care and Feeding of Warriors: Survival and the modern warrior. As I was reading through the piece, I found myself unconsciously caressing my keybind for Divine Shield, no doubt a realization of how blessed we paladins are when it comes to self-preservation mechanics and abilities. Some of the troubles that Matt detailed I have either sidestepped or easily handled with our generous toolbox, and his angst has given me a newfound appreciation for the veritable arsenal of useful spells at our disposal.

This week I'll be touching on a couple of our newer abilities that have proven time and time again to be so valuable and effective that I can't imagine playing a paladin without them.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Retribution cheat sheet for the Throne of Thunder

Retribution cheat sheet for the Throne of Thunder
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Throne of Thunder has been out for a good long while now, and many of us have been raiding its depths every week. Personally, though, I took a short break from raiding at the launch of patch 5.2, and had only seen many of these fights on LFR. It wasn't until recently that I picked the raiding game back up and joined a new group, though with them working on their second heroic boss I was a tad behind in terms of progression. So I did a bit of research and, through trial and error each week, have crafted a short list of notes for each boss, including talents, glyphs, and special abilities to look out for.

Usually my "default" talent build is something like 221223, with Mass Exorcism, Double Jeopardy, and Templar's Verdict glyphed. In my summaries below I will try to emphasize the usefulness of certain talents and glyphs, whether they deviate from this core build or not.

Also, these tips are primarily for normal mode encounters in Throne of Thunder, though some of them may be applicable to LFR and parts of heroic.

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Filed under: Paladin, Raiding, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

Four transmog sets for today's retro-bution paladin

Four transmog sets for today's retrobution paladin WED
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Before we jump into our completely serious, no-nonsense discussion this week, I suppose we better touch on the one piece of retribution-related news coming from the 5.3 PTR:

Sword of Light now increases damage with two-handed melee weapons by 30%, up from 15%.

Naturally I, like many of you, got a warm fuzzy feeling reading that particular sentence. Higher overall damage from weapon-based attacks? Sign me up!

While I don't mean to bite the hand that feeds, I am concerned that this is merely a bandage meant to keep ret from lagging too far behind until 6.0 and, as such, ultimately fails to address the cause of the problem.

I'm just spitballing here, but there was talk at the tail end of Cataclysm and the very beginning of Mists that in our calculated stat weights for T14H BiS, strength was already somewhat devalued in comparison to secondary stats, especially haste, and that this could lead to ret scaling much less efficiently than other melee using similar gear.

Regardless, the buff is appreciated, but I'm more looking forward to what the next expansion has in store for our spec.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Transmogrification

The Light and How to Swing It: No hybrid taxation without representation!

The Light and How to Swing It
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Lately I've been browsing the paladin forums, usually with a stiff drink in hand. I'm not quite sure what draws me to those forums – almost every ret post is about PvP or Inquisition, but over time I've managed to find a few that validate my searching with their thought-provoking, insightful, and sometimes humorous nature. The other day, for example, I stumbled upon a post that made me scratch my beard stubble, put down my watered-down gin, and think. In it, the author briefly introduced the notion that he or she felt that players trying to heal in ret spec shouldn't be summarily votekicked for offending the linear sensibilities of the patrons of the Random Dungeon Finder.

Reading through the back and forth provided some good entertainment, and a few individuals earned my respect for being able to heal or tank effectively while also sustaining decent DPS numbers (if their stories are true, of course), but all of this got me thinking: should paladins (or hybrids in general, for that matter) be unshackled from the "one spec-one role" dictum that has dominated the thought-space of WoW players for years?

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: Swap seals, not sandwiches

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Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Not being particularly captivated by anything in patch 5.2 so far, I've recently picked up a prot warrior and have carried him through some of the lower level areas. This isn't the first time I've tried leveling up a warrior; back in Wrath I had a level 80 fury warrior that was loads of fun, at least until Blizzard nerfed Titan's Grip and my poorly equipped berserker cow lost his ill-gotten mojo.

Since then I've tried to recapture that magic but there was always something that bugged me about the warrior playstyle: stance dancing. Being forced to choose between creating complicated macros or increasing my number of keybinds by some unseemly factor, I have typically opted for the hidden choice that was retiring the character. Thankfully this aspect of the warrior class seems to have been toned down a bit in Mists, so I figured I'd give our shielded brethren another go.

As paladins we don't have to deal with stances that lock us into or out of certain abilities (though many have pleaded with Blizzard to change that), but we do have something similar -- the seal system.

The Swiss Army seal

If you happened to pick up the paladin class sometime after vanilla WoW, you were fortunate enough to level up under the new seal regime. Under the old system, seals were a short-duration buff that was immediately consumed upon casting Judgement (back then they didn't skimp on the vowels!) I vaguely remember this mechanic, back when my friends first introduced me to the game. I very much disliked having to recast my seal so often, as many others did, I'm sure.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

How to key-bind your retribution paladin

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Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

There are few things more frustrating while playing video games than being unable to control your character properly. In select cases this can be due to some fault in the game itself, but more often than not it tends to be a hardware malfunction. I had an increasingly difficult time playing Halo 3 when I would whip my controller at the wall in a blind rage every time someone would counter-snipe me just when I found a particularly good perch.

Recently though, my troubles have been with my mouse. My Logitech G500 has served me well for a few years but countless hours of furious clicking in games like Diablo III and Torchlight II have taken their toll. After some careful deliberation I decided to get the G500's older brother, the Logitech G600. I felt, playing as much WoW as I do these days, investing in a self-proclaimed "MMO mouse" would be sensible.

When I got the mouse and unboxed it, however, I was not prepared for just how many buttons this thing has. I sat with my spellbook open trying to find the most reasonable arrangement of keybinds for longer than I care to admit. Eventually I settled on a group of binds that I'm slowly but surely getting accustomed to, though not before I "misclick" and toss a Hand of Protection on a hunter.

This week I'd like to go over keybinds, discussing some general tips and going over two different schemes that I've used that hopefully some of you will find useful (unless you're left-handed, in which case I apologize that these tips may not be all that helpful for your sinister situation). If you have another setup you'd like to share, please do!

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

The Light and How to Swing It: Ret gear in the Throne of Thunder

The Light and How to Swing It Ret gear in the Throne of Thunder
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

As Notorious B.I.G. would say, "mo patches, mo gear." Well, I imagine he would have said that if he could have played World of Warcraft.

There's just something about pouring through datamined loot and finding out where it all drops that excites me. In fact, I don't get into the whole "new patch hype" until I look at the gear, and then I'm suddenly hit with the realization that we're getting new bosses, new content, and new items.

Despite how much fun I had in putting this article together, gear lists have proven to be very dry. They have their uses, particularly as bookmark fodder for a quick reference of what drops where, so instead of trying to fluff this post up, I'm going to just lay it all out at once. Before I do that, however, I need to mention a few things.

There are some discrepancies between Wowhead's data and that from the PTR itself. You might notice weird or incorrect tooltips or entries that don't correspond to data on the site or on the test realm. In all cases, I defaulted to the test realm as the final authority on the matter.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Mists of Pandaria

The Light and How to Swing It: Why retribution DPS is a-okay

The Light and How to Swing It Why retribution DPS is aokay
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Towards the tail end of Ulduar and into the beginning of Trial of the Crusader, I was in a guild that had a rogue that would consistently top the DPS charts. I would run so many heroics and PuG raids to get gear, all the while practicing what could laughably be called our "rotation" in retrospect, and I would still fall short. Over time, however, I began to notice that even though I wasn't beating him, I was beating many others. Soon the time came when I was neck-and-neck with him, always biting his heels and waiting for him to allow me an opportunity to beat him, once and for all.

When I eventually did overtake him and saw my character's name on the top of Recount, the feeling was greater than any boss kill. You can't ever see a boss collapse and have the feeling that you did that all by yourself, that you were the sole reason for this victory, because it took a combination of other players, all supporting each other, to see that end result. The DPS race is totally different -- aside from healers keeping you alive (which, if you're properly aware of your surroundings and your threat, shouldn't be an issue) you shoulder the responsibility to push out as much damage as you can. Seeing yourself at the top is a much more personal victory because you can honestly say that you did that, that you pulled yourself up there and truly earned that spot. And from what I understand, this is not a unique experience.

I have talked to quite a few players who have expressed concern over some fairly recent SimulationCraft results that show retribution ranking near the bottom out of all available DPS specs. Even ignoring SimCraft, many more players have expressed concern over their damage output as they compare it to their fellow raiders, guildmates, and random DPSers in LFR. Despite this mounting evidence, I have asserted that retribution is in a nice place -- not great, not OP, but comfortable. Indeed, Ghostcrawler tends to feel the same way. So what's the story here? Why does it seem like everyone and their uncle think ret is doing poorly?

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Mists of Pandaria

The Light and How to Swing It: Utilizing retribution's utility spells

The Light and How to Swing It Utilizing retributions utility spells
Every week, WoW Insider brings you The Light and How to Swing It for holy, protection and retribution paladins. Seasoned ret paladin Dan Desmond is here to answer your questions and provide you with your biweekly dose of retribution medicine. Contact him at dand@wowinsider.com with any questions, concerns, or suggestions!

Sometimes it's easy to get yourself on a one-track mindset and put all of your effort and energy into maintaining the best DPS rotation you can to top the charts and kill those bosses dead. I often forget that I'm even playing a hybrid class as I swap around talents and glyphs to squeak out as much damage I can. Thankfully, the designers threw a number of challenges into our latest raid tier, situations where a retribution paladin's utility toolkit can not only shine, but produce truly epic moments and make the player of that classiest of classes feel truly fulfilled.

The last time I talked about utility was back in March, where I tossed some ideas around about how to introduce these spells to the newcomer or, in my case, to the utility-challenged. As with many classes, you're given a plethora of powerful abilities as you level up that work well in a wide variety of encounters, but both keeping track of these abilities and finding the best situations to use them in can be overwhelming. Therefore, I thought it would be a good idea to flesh out these spells and describe how one can and should use them.

Pretending to be a holy paladin

For the full experience, stare at your raid frames while on /follow with your guild's shadow priest. If you die, blame the shadow priest.

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Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It, Mists of Pandaria

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