The Spirit Post – Why Holy Paladins Want It


If you are anything like me you have done a few things while gearing up in WoD so far.

  1. You have tried to get spirit pieces on all your available slots:  Neck, Cloak, Rings, and Trinkets.
  2. You have wondered how much it really does for you and tried to get Spirit free Neck, Cloak, Rings, and Trinkets.

Now that raiding is around the corner it is a great time to answer that question.  Should we take spirit on all our available slots?  Should we avoid it, should we mix it, what about trinkets?

To answer that we need to look at how much regen we actually get from Spirit.  We get 2.06 MP5 per Spirit or about 0.4 Mana per second per Spirit.  Our base regen without Spirit is 963 mana per second.  That means our base regen is worth about 2337 Spirit!!!!!  Blizzards goal was to make base regen higher to start and have spirit scale it up slowly so early raiding won’t be an OOM-fest and later tiers of raiding will still care about Spirit.  Another way to look at it is:  If base regen is so high, and spirit scales slowly, why have it at all?  At least that was what I thought of it.  If we can answer that we can give spirit a value and compare it to other secondaries and even our primary Intellect itself.

To do this I did the following:

  • Found the highest possible spirit pieces at 630 and 695 item levels.  The value from trinkets is either a static spirit or an average spirit from procs.
  • Used my healing rotation spreadsheet with Beacon of Faith, Holy Prism, and Eternal Flame to determine MPS and HPS at a 630 ilvl and 695 ilvl (AskMrRobot BiS list).
  • Picked a fight time of 5 minutes.  Some will be longer, some shorter, perhaps a tad short for progression raiding but a decent amount of time.
  • Determined how much more mana spirit gained us over 5 minutes and how much more healing  one could do with that mana.
  • Determined what the HPS and the total healing would be if Spirit was converted to all Critical Stike or Intellect.
  • Compared the % change in total healing.
The Elusive Spirit Stat Wt.

The Elusive Spirit Stat Wt.

Pretty fascinating if I do say so myself.  I was blown away at the value of Spirit, especially compared to what it would be worth in secondary stats.  Even when comparing to Intellect it stacks up well.  Lots of interesting things to conclude from the above:

  • Our basic healing rotation with 630 gear will go make us OOM at 4:53.  695 gear will allow us to do our basic healing rotation for 5:31.  As a bonus, base regen will sustain us for 4:08 (4:12 with less haste).  So with a standard rotation any fight under 4 minutes spirit has little value.  Over 4 minutes, it has immense value.  HOWEVER!  We will not just be doing our standard rotation, we will be using CD’s, spamming Flash Heal and Holy Radiance (maybe) and in general, spending more mana than the standard rotation during progression which means it is highly unlikely there will be a fight where Spirit will mean little till farm content.  TLDR:  Base Spirit is strong but not enough to sustain raid fights alone.
  • Going OOM is the best way to tank your HPS (the second best way is to not use your CD’s!).  Being able to heal for addition 41 or 83 seconds is an enormous amount of healing.  14% and 28% more healing.  if we dumped all of the spirit stats into our best stat, Critical Strike, we would only get 5% and 10% more healing, a fraction of the gains of having more mana to spend.  If we compare to our Primary stat we see things closer.  At a 630 ilvl, lower item levels are when primary stats are the most valuable, we see Int is just a tad better than Spirit.  But this is mostly a thought exercise, we don’t really have a choice of Spirit or Int except for trinkets, as so we can’t expect to drop all spirit for Intellect, but it can help us pick trinkets.  At 695 ilvl we see Intellect fall behind spirit significantly.  TLDR:  Spirit is up to 3x more valuable than other secondaries.  At 630 Ilvl Spirit is 1:1 to Intellect.  Above that Spirit > Intellect (1:1.4 at 695).

Putting a value on spirit is hard because there are so many variables.  Mana spent, fight length, spell selection, amount of over-healing, etc.  But overall I think if you look at how much more mana you get, how much HPS you can do with that mana you can compare stats and come away knowing Spirit is valuable, even the most valuable.

  • For very short fights and low item levels (in Challenge Modes especially) Intellect is > Spirit but Spirit > other secondaries.
  • At raiding gear levels Spirit > Int > other secondaries.

So despite the high base regen, low gains in regen from spirit, it is absolutely worth taking and should be a priority in your gearing.  Have confidence that any extra percent of crit or intellect will not be more HPS than having extra mana to do real healing.

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Raiding Trinkets – The Super List

Raiding Stat Weights for 630-701 iLvL Trinkets

Raiding Stat Weights for 630-701 iLvL Trinkets

Not Much to say here other than it is a huge amount of info.  This is everything.  Figuring Spirit = Intellect and stat weights for raiding SS/EF (average).  This also assumes many of the tool-tips are not accurate in that everything is proc on attack.  In game the trinkets I have tested/have are procing off heals.  It is possible some of the trinkets above are intended for DPS only and will not proc reliably, however with Holy Prism on CD we should get fair up-time on PPM trinkets.

Very possible some of the info was entered wrong, in wrong, or will get changed.  Will update as changes/mistakes come to light.  If it is helpful to have more ways to sort the information such as Spirit/Int, Raid, or Difficulty Level I can add them.

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Heaing Trinkets – 5-Man and Challenge Mode Stat Weights – Updated for Nerfs

630 Trinkets Post Nerf

630 Trinkets Post Nerf

Based on my stat weights for Challenge modes and 5 mans.  Spirit has value, but fights are generally so short spirit doesn’t play a large roll in our regen and therefore I suggest going full intellect.  But if you value spirit for those slots, and that is fair, the spirit trinkets are values 1 to 1 with intellect.

Socket assumes +50 Crit gem.  Socket > Warforged with +50 Gem, less if +35 Gem.

Not sure why they nerfed the proc and on use trinkets, likely has much more to do with DPS than healing, just makes the static trinkets that much more powerful and desirable imo.  The on use and procs are only 10% boost to stats for 15-20, hardly game breaking for healing when our heals heal for such a small percent of players health.

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Challenge Mode Stat Weights and Rotations – Flash of Light Edition

0/8 Complete!

0/8 Complete!

Most of my site is dedicated to being a pally healer in raids.  Currently we don’t have any raids.  But we do have Challenge mode dailies that give us sexy (for now) 640 gear.  Healing a Challenge mode, and heroic 5mans for that matter, is very different than raid healing.  We have a reduced number of targets to heal, fights are short, and the tank is taking huge damage.

What that means is simple.  Flash of Light.  Lots of it.  It also means lots of single target healing directly to the tank.  It also mean 630 ilvl.  So I ran some rotations using Flash of Light and 630 ilvl gear.  I also did some stat weights.  The results differ, in some cases greatly from raiding stat weights because of the use of flash of light and the amount of direct beacon healing.  Using Flash of Light means Infusion of Light procs don’t speed up our rotation and increase our HPS.  It means we can use a Holy Light instead and save mana.  Directly healing the tank means Beacon of Light healing goes down.  In general the damage pattern is:  Sustained damage on tank with spike damage on one or the whole party followed by only tank damage.

A different kind of rotation

A different kind of rotation

What we see here is interesting.  Most notably for spamming the tank with heals, rest of the raid not needing healing, Flash of light spam is more HPS than using holy shock and HP finishers.  The best single target HPS is FL with a SS on the target.  In order to have EF up you have to use Holy Shock which reduces your HPS.  We don’t do this in raids because there is almost always raid healing, and FL spam isn’t mana sustainable.

As for my Raid Healing rotation I figured half and half.  Half the time spamming the tank and half the time getting the raid up.  What we see is our total HPS goes up (basically from beacon of light transferring heals use and the fact I included the godly Holy Prism).  Again in the battle of Sacred Shield vs Eternal Flame we get a mixed result.  Better overall HPS with EF but we also just concluded SS is the best single target healing talent.  But important to point out the differences are tiny.  Comfort, utilization, and fight mechanics will favor different talents.

Bonus Aoe Healing Tidbit:  EF does almost 50% more healing than LoD on 5 targets.  LoD does about 15% more healing than a Flash of Light.  On 3 targets Holy Radiance is equal to a Flash of Light but slower to cast unless infusion of light proc.

Moral of the Aoe Healing Tidbit:  Use EF instead of LoD if EF.  With SS it is okay to cast LoD if everyone has taken damage.  Only use Holy Radiance with 4+ targets in ranging needing heals and ideally with infusion of light proc.

Here we can see some differences to the stat weights for raiding.  The big thing to me is they are all super close in terms of secondaries but WAY behind Intellect.  This means trinkets with Intellect are most likely going to be far stronger than double secondary trinkets.  It also means if you have a few pieces with stats like Versatility and Mastery, even though not optimal, it isn’t that far off a Haste and Crit piece.

Haste leads in HPS and then Crit and Multi-strike are nearly the same.  Crit loses HPS strength compared to raiding stat weights because Infusion of Light doesn’t increase HPS anymore due to use of FL.  It does have a spirit value however.  In the charts above it shows that 300 Crit is worth about 80 spirit, or 1 crit is worth 0.26 Spirit.  Haste has the reverse effect.  1 Haste is like losing 0.67 Spirit per point.  Because of that I would prefer crit over Multi-strike.  Mastery and Versatility again bring in the rear, Mastery being lower than expected due to over-healing being low.

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Eternal Flame vs Sacred Shield in 5 man Heroics – WoD 6.0

SS vs EF

Most of this site is dedicated to the raiding holy paladin.  In the absence of raids, and the need to gear up newly level characters, 5 man heroics are now in focus.

In Warlords of Draenor we have had some changes to the healing game that make triage healing a real thing again.  It is hard to top a group off at our current gear levels (without Avenging Wrath).  I have counted up to 6 Flash of Lights to top a player off!  6 casts to top 1 player off!

We have seen two other somewhat contradictory things happen:

  1. Shielding has lost value compared to MoP because direct heals are needed now, you can no longer just prevent all damage, you actually have to get people’s health up.
  2. Sacred Shield was “buffed”, or it can be said Eternal Flame was nerfed, so it is a powerful spell, despite the reduce value of shields.

So we are left in a predicament.  What’s better?  Lets take a look at the healing of EF and Sacred Shield at 620 ilvl.  Figuring no over-healing in a 5man heroic setting.  I have not counted the healing from WoG because both SS and EF will be casting it at 3+ HP on targets that need it.  What separates the 2 specs is the EF HoT and the Sacred Shield HoT.

An inefficient answer

An inefficient answer

Numerically, Sacred Shield is the strongest.  It is a big shield, instant cast, can have 3 charges rolling with the ability, with pooling, to have 5 up at a time.  It provides the best tank health stability.  Sacred Shield is about 39k of tank shielding.  EF on the tank plus another EF transferring through beacon is about 23k healing.

There are, however, many down sides.  The shield is a HoT shield, the worst kind of shield.  We get the shield in small ticks, this reduces its effectiveness because it is comparatively weak against big or infrequent damage.  It also has a fairly high mana cost.   It flat out costs more mana to run SS.  Lastly, it doesn’t actually heal anyone.  Sure, it makes healing people easier since they took less damage, but if you didn’t have a shield on them, or it was a big spike in damage that only 1 tick of SS absorbed, you have lots of health to heal up.  This makes SS feel especially crappy when raid damage goes out.

Eternal Flame is strong because with CD use, HP pooling, Enhanced Holy Shock procs you can sometimes get 3+ full power EF’s out as well as it works great with Beacon of Faith when the 2nd beacon target actually needs healing.  It also improves the effectiveness of our mastery shield since it reduces the chance it will fall off non-tank targets.  And in contrast to SS, it costs less.

It does have draw backs.  The number one to me is it just isn’t a strong HoT.  It does 16k healing over 30 seconds.  Holy Light with all the stats figured in will do 20-30k.  Sacred Shield will mitigate the damage an EF would heal with only 4 of 6 ticks and with SS we can easily have 3 out at a time meaning we are likely getting those 4 ticks (but at increased mana cost).  The other drawback is you will frequently have 3 holy power and the tank is taking spike damage but they already has EF on them.  So you may decide to over-ride the spell instead of casting a higher cost FL.  This reduces the power of EF when you can’t spread them around, because sometimes there just wont be someone else that needs it (which is an issue SS equally has).

Moral of the story part I:  Sacred Shield will be more raw output but less healing.  It costs more and is inefficient to use because throwing out a SS to have 1 tick work for an absorb is basically a 6k heal for 4k mana.  Better off not using it at all and using Holy/Flash of light instead.  But when a dps will take steady damage it will shine.  For tank damage only, SS wins.  For frequent raid wide damage, SS wins, but does little to top people off.  For everything in-between EF will do more actual healing and cost less mana.

Moral of the story part II:  They are fairly well balance and one isn’t a clear winner.  Their comparative power to direct heals like Holy and Flash of Light make them only part of the tool kit, not the end all be all super power spell we have come to think of spells like EF in the past.  EF is basically a bonus to your HP finisher, SS is a tank damage reducing spell.  We need Holy and Flash of Light (really its Holy Prism) to do the heavy lifting.

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Saved by the Light – The level 100 Talent Hero(ic 5mans)


My biggest surprise of the expansion has been the talent Saved by the Light.  Not to over sell it, but it is incredible right now.  There are lots of tanks who have just hit 100 with 1/2 SoO gear doing 5mans being healed by healers with the same level of terrible gear.  That means lots of huge damage spikes or periods of spamming a tank whose health bar just wont go up.

This is where Saved by the Light has really shined.  A 1 minute CD on the proc and it can proc on both the healer and the beacon target, on separate CD’s.  It is an instant 70-100k shield when you and your tank need it the most.

At the pace of heroics you can have it up for every pull or more depending on how crazy the tank is with pulling mobs, facing the wrong way, not interrupting, not CC’ing, etc.  It can make what would be a nightmare run go smooth.  I have run 1 CM (Grimrail Depot) and it proc’ed 2-4 times on all 3 boss kills.

I try not to make “feel and opinion” a part of this site, but this is a part of healing that can’t be “spreadsheet-ed”.  I spent a good amount of time using Beacon of Faith and Beacon of Insight in heroics.  I have completed over 40 5man heroics since Thursday and I have found Saved by the Light the most useful of the Beacons.

Beacon of Faith is the far away winner for raiding because most fights have two tanks tanking consistent damage.  In 5mans, the damage is largely too random or infrequent on the second target.  It is nice to have but the steady stream of heals is rarely utilized, and direct heals are still needed to save people.

Beacon of Insight is a mix for me.  I like it more than Faith for 5mans because it is a boost to spot healing but I find when the tank is taking spike damage I can’t leave healing him to move the insight buff back to the tank for a heal and it ends up being stuck on someone who doesn’t need an urgent heal.  Overall it is somewhat clunky and it ends up just being an occasional 20% buff to healing on a person not in urgent need of a heal.

As tanks and healers gear, and certainly for raiding, the power of Saved by the Light will go down.  Its power is saving a tank from death.  Its power is having a huge shield when you need it the most.  If tank deaths stop being a problem the talent will be useless.  But for now, and for fights with tank gibing mechanics, the once ignored level 100 talent deserves some much deserved love and attention.

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But it FEEEEEELS like “Super Stat X” is better…


620 grpahci

This post to to try and show people how stats affect your output and a look at where my stat weights come from.  With the stat weights on my site, and I am not super open about the math, so it is easy to say “X Stat feels better, I don’t understand how you have Y at a higher value”.  My spreadsheets are just not user friendly so it is much easier to post sorted values than rows of equations.

But today I want to show you a  peek at what I am doing with those spreadsheets and how I get my values.  Lets take a look at my 620 pally (max ilvl, not equipped, lol) right now 2 days into WoD.

I have the following stats:

  • Intellect:  2785 – 2924 buffed.
  • Spell Power: 3741 – 4268 buffed.
  • Crit: 9.66% – 14.66% buffed.
  • Haste: 13.53% – 19.21% buffed.
  • Mastery : 15.11% – 21.36% buffed.
  • Multistrike: 5.27% – 10.27% buffed.
  • Versatility:  2.47% – 5.47% buffed.

With those stats I can figure out how much each of my healing spells will heal for.  Lets take a look at Holy Shock:

Holy Shock heals for 140% of Spell Power. But we also have a 5% modifier from Seal of Insight and a 25% healing modifier for being holy.  That means our Holy Shock will hit for about 184% of your spell power or 7,843.  Now we have to figure in:

  • Versatility – This is a % bonus to the base of the heal, in our case 5.47% times the above base heal.
  • Critical strike – This is the chance to do 100% more healing.  I have a 14.66% chance to crit which means I have a 14.66% chance of the time we do 100% more healing or 114.66% more healing.  For holy shock however I get double the crit chance.  So Holy shock is increased by 29.32%.  This is multiplied by the base healing with versatility figured in.
  • Mastery Shield – This is shield that is a % of the raw healing we do.  Thus it is, on average, in these stats 21.36% of my heal after versatility and critical strike is figured in.
  • Multistrike – This is a % chance to gain up to two 30% additional heals.  They will provide mastery shields and transfer to Beacon.  For me it will be a 10.27% chance to do 60% more healing based off of the beacon, mastery, crit, and versatility modifiers.
  • Beacon of Light/Faith – With beacon of Faith this is a 100% bonus to heals.  50% for each beacon.  Includes versatility and critical strike modifiers to base. No mastery benefit.
  • Cast Time – Haste reduces our cast time by base cast time divided by 1+haste%.

Add all the above up and our 7843 base heal turns into 25,141 healing. If it was 1 equation it would be:

  • (140% Spell Power * 105% * 125% * 105.47% * 129.32%) x 1.2136% + (140% Spell Power * 105% * 125% * 105.47% * 129.32%) + [(140% Spell Power * 105% * 125% * 105.47% * 129.32%) x 1.2136% + (140% Spell Power * 105% * 125% * 105.47% * 129.32%)] x 10.27% x 60%

The above equation isn’t what the actual heal will heal for but the average it will heal for when cast many, many times.

What isn’t above is haste.  Haste increases the healing of HoT’s like EF and Sacred Shield.  Breakpoints are gone so no thresholds for extra ticks, it just ticks faster and haste does a more flat % boost to healing.  Thus 19.21% haste will increase Sacred Shield ticks by 19.21%.  In terms of cast time it not only reduces the cast time of spells like Word of Glory and Holy Light but also reduces the GCD of spells like Holy Shock thus speeding the rotation (and it’s CD).  19.21% haste makes the cast time of Holy Light go from 2.5 seconds to 2.10 seconds and lowers the GCD to 1.26 seconds from 1.5.

Here is a table of common spells using the above math:

No over-healing

No over-healing

As my comment shows above, this is no over-healing.  Our heals will never do this much per cast unless the damage is insane or there is some sort of healing absorb mechanic.  In my normal stat weights I figure in over-healing.

Lets look at how our stats change the above table.  I took 300 of a stat, which is basically doubling one of my stats at my awesome ilvl and how it would effect the spells and the HPS:

WTB Mythic Gear

WTB Mythic Gear

We can see how much more healing a change in the above stats makes in the total healing.  By making the gain in healing with 300 intellect the standard we can see how +300 of the other stats compares and thus get our stat weights.  We can see that haste looks the best, mastery looks the worst.  On live it isn’t so drastic, Mastery is worth more because it has a much lower over-heal than our directs spells, but in raw healing Mastery is not an efficient way to increase healing.  Haste is also devalued because in the above chart we are not casting Sacred Shield every 6 seconds, so it un-fairly represents a haste scaling spell, and spells like Holy Prism are not effected by Haste which contribute a huge portion of our healing.  Also, and VERY important, is I have not figured in Infusion of Light procs into crit scaling above.  This effectively provides a haste scaling to crit which increases its stat value by a fair amount, enough to surpass everything but intellect.

Got to get back to gearing!  MORE HEROICS!  I do hope the above post help people see where their stat values are coming from, not that we have much choice in secondary stats yet (I swear most of my pieces are Versatility and Mastery…)


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Level 100



Took about 11 hours.  Had a blast.  Look forward to gearing up!

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Merciful Wrath Glyph

A Different Kind of Holy

A Different Kind of Holy

I want to take a quick look at Glyph of Merciful Wrath.  I more or less ignored it recently, using opinion to make decisions instead of my spreadsheets.  The basis of the glyph is that it doubles its up-time but you get 1/2 the benefit.  10% Haste and Crit and 50% more healing.  Up 40 seconds per 180 instead of 20 seconds.  There are a few reasons this is good:

  • A huge CD can result in more over-healing.
  • 1/3 Uptime on Avenging Wrath!
  • Gives more flexibility to meet the needs of the encounter
  • Prevents Crit Capping when active.

There are also some down sides:

  • Reduces the effectiveness of Sanctified Wrath.  Reduces Holy Shock CD by 25% and increases crit by 10%.
  • Won’t have 100% chance to proc Infusion of light.
  • Can’t alternate HS-HL/EF(@3HP)/LoD(@3HP) because of Holy Shocks CD.
  • Reduced Burst when there won’t be over-healing.

There is a great article on about the math behind crit capping with Holy Shock here.

I ran the rotations and came up with the following chart.  No T17 Bonus.

Merciful Wrath

Basically we see there is a small decrease in total HPS with the glyph when figuring just Avenging Wrath.  Very small.  Small enough using/not using the glyph to match encounter mechanics will provide the best HPS.  When using Sanctified Wrath there is larger drop off in healing, about 8% when using the glyph.  The primary reason for this is that the Holy Shock CD doesn’t line up for alternating HS and HL/Finisher.

In the end I think it is viable and can be used to match encounters, but not a clear winner.

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Holy Paladin Healing Guide for Warlords of Draenor – 6.0 (WoD)

Mission statement:   Provide a quick reference guide so that anyone new to the class can read it and quickly be ready to take on the healing paladin role.

  • General goal 1:  Discuss the need to know and not list every possible spell and glyph like a crappy lecturer reading PowerPoint slides.
  • General goal 2:  Provide detailed information with theory-craft about how to maximize your paladin healing.

Disclaimer:  This is being released before WoD and strategies and abilities are subject to change.  This guide will be updated as they do but please make use of the comment sections and forums to discuss new/other/different ideas.

Table of Contents:

  1. Whats different from 5.4 – Skip to section 2 if 5.4 means nothing to you.
  2. Crash Course Guide:
    1. Talents and Glyphs
    2. The Spells
    3. Utility
    4. Gearing
  3. It’s All in the Details:  Min-Max Section

Section 1:  New to Warlords of Draenor

Healing Changes in General:  

  • Bizzard has made it its goal to slow down healing and make it more about decisions rather than spamming heals in a race to keep players topped off.  They are trying to achieve this by doubling players health but not changing the size of heals.
  • They are also want to change how mana scales during content.  Instead of starting tiers of content struggling for mana and finishing tiers where mana is irrelevant, they increased base regen and provided a cheap healing “rotation”.  As you gear up you will gain Spirit more slowly and will never be able to spam your most expensive spells.
  • Lastly, tanks are a little less powerful and raid cooldowns have been toned down.  This means our heals mean more, are needed more, and we have greater control over mitigating incoming damage rather than our DPS and Tanking counterparts being able to do our job for us.

Holy Paladin Changes from 5.4 to 6.0:

  • Holy Power finishers now have a cast time.  Light of Dawn, Word Of Glory, and Eternal Flame all have 1.5 sec base casts.  Part of another general change to reduce how much healing can happen while moving.
  • Tower of Radiance no longer generates Holy Power.  It reduces the cost of heals on the Beacon Target instead.
  • Cool Down Changes:  Avenging Wrath has been merged with Divine Favor, and Guardian of Ancient Kings to provide one mega cool down.  Hand of Salvation is Protection only, Devotion Aura is Holy only.
  • Mana Cost:  Holy Radiance has a huge mana cost and cannot be spammed for Holy Power.  Divine Plea is gone so there is no active mana regen ability.  Additionally, Mana Tide Totem and Hymns of Hope are gone.  Beacon of Light now also has a mana cost but Judge and Denounce are mana free.
  • Divine Light is gone.  Just have Holy Light and Flash of Light.  They are the same strength.
  • Eternal Flame now stacks Illuminated Healing again.  The HoT is much weaker and 1, 2, and 3 Holy Power strength casts buffs the initial heal and the duration of the HoT (10/20/30sec).  Sacred Shield is much stronger to compete with Eternal Flame.
  • Holy Shock now has double your critical strike chance rather than a flat 25% bonus to crit.  Critical strike is also our specialized stat and we gain 5% additional crit from its rating.

Section 2:  Crash Course Guide

A:  Talents and Glyphs



Quick Picks

  • 15 – Movement Tier:  Speed of Light is a sprint on demand.  Pursuit of Justice is a “static” movement buff (increases based on current holy power).
  • 30 – Crowd Control Tier:  Fist of Justice reduces the CD of your 6 sec stun to 30 sec.  Other choices are 1 min CC and Aoe Daze.  Either are perfectly fine options.
  • 45 – Healing Spells:  Eternal flame puts a HoT on your WoG.  Refreshes mastery shields.  Sacred Shield, a HoT Shield, is perfectly viable, changes play style.  Selfless healer buffs Flash of Light but requires the use of the “non-healing wet noodle hitting” Judgment.
  • 60 – Utility:  All are useful, although Hand of Purity is only useful in rare and specific encounters.  Unbreakable spirit cuts the CD of Lay on Hands, Divine Shield, and Divine Protection in half which can be a life saver.  Clemency for double Blessing of Protections can be required for some fights.
  • 75 – Healing Buff:  An argument can be made for all three.  Holy Avenger is biggest burst, Sanctified Wrath has the most sustained healing and best mobility, Divine Purpose can be fun and scales well with T17 Set Bonus.
  • 90 – Healing Spells:  Holy Prism for most encounters.  Target boss and enjoy the huge smart AoE heal.  Light’s Hammer is best for stacked infrequent AoE healing fights, biggest heal but long CD that wont always line up.
  • 100 – Beacon of Light Modifiers:  Beacon of Faith lets you have two beacons.  Will be the winner in most situations.  Beacon of Insight can be useful in small groups or single tank fights.  Saved by the Light is very situational, mostly a PvP talent.



Best Options

  • Beacon of Light:  No GCD triggered when casting Beacon of Light.  Required if you do frequent beacon swapping.
  • Hand of Sacrifice:  Take away the humiliation of killing yourself while being useful.  No damage transferred when using Hand of Sacrifice.
  • Divinity:  Gain 10% mana back when you use Lay on Hands.  Mana-Pot while saving a life.
  • Merciful Wrath:  Reduces the effectiveness of Avenging Wrath but doubles the uptime.  Good for encounters with more frequent small burst of damage.  Not optimal with Sanctified Wrath Glyph.
  • Cleanse:  Gain 2 charges of cleanse, situational.
  • Divine Protection:  Instead of 40% less magic damage, 20% physical and 20% magical damage reduction.  Situational.
  • Flash of Light:  10% buff to next heal from you to the target of your Flash Heal.  Can be good for tank healing if you find yourself spamming Flash of Light on a tank.
  • Protector of the Innocent:  20% self heal when you cast Word of Glory.  Situational.

B:  The Spells

Single Target Heals:

  • Holy Shock – Generates Holy Power, instant.  Used on CD.
  • Holy Light – Slow and Cheap.  The Filler.
  • Flash of Light – Fast and Expensive.  For panic heals on single target.  Good for 5 man dungeons.
  • Word of Glory/Eternal Flame – Holy Power Finisher.  Cast at 3 Holy Power.  Keep on tanks, EF’s HoT ticks for 50% more on self.
  • Sacred Shield – Acts as a HoT Shield.  Has 3 Charges.  Keep a charge regenerating at all times.  Keep on tanks.

AoE Heals:

  • Holy Radiance – Generates Holy Power.  Heals up to 6 in a small radiance from the targeted player.  Very Expensive.
  • Light of Dawn – Holy Power Finisher for AoE.  Cast at 3 Holy Power.  30 yard range.
  • Light’s Hammer or Holy Prism – Most powerful healing spells we have, use on CD or as fight requires.

There are two major play styles.  Eternal Flame and Sacred Shield.  As of now they are very close in output and different fights will favor once spec over the other, don’t feel guilty picking the play style you prefer, they are very close to each other.


  1. Cast Holy Shock on CD.
  2. Use your finisher at 3 holy power, not less.
  3. Cast Light of Dawn with Sacred Shield talent.  Cast Eternal Flame when using Eternal Flame talent.  Using Word of Glory with Sacred Shield is situational and usually a HPS loss. Using LoD with Eternal Flame is situational and usually a HPS loss.  Keep EF on tanks and self if no other obvious targets.
  4. Sacred Shield has 3 charges, 10 second recharge.  Get 3 out on the raid and then just keep it recharging, okay to pool 2 charges, just don’t let it sit at 3 charges.  Prefer tanks.
  5. Use Holy Prism with boss/enemy as target on CD.  Biggest Heal we have.  If you have Light’s Hammer save for raid wide damage or on CD based on Encounter.
  6. Beacon of Light should on the tank taking damage.  With Beacon of Faith, level 100 talent, 2nd beacon should be on the other tank or whoever is taking frequent damage.  They share a 3 second CD and has a mana cost.  Frequent beacon swaps is a dead play style.
  7. Use Holy Light as filler.  Your heals put shields on players so even if players don’t need a heal they likely can use the shield.  Healing a target that needs more health is always preferred to just putting a mastery shield on someone with your over-heal, but don’t be worried about over-healing unless people are dying.
  8. Use Holy Radiance during heavy raid damage on clumped groups only, use sparingly it is too expensive to cast more than a handful of times.
  9. Use Flash of Light for heavy single target damage, if the target has Beacon of Light/Faith it will be more mana sustainable.

Using Cool Downs:

  • Avenging Wrath is our major CD.  100% more healing plus 20% more crit and haste.  Have a plan when you need to use it, if you don’t have a plan use on CD.  Not using your CD’s is a common mistake that really affects your HPS.  With Sanctified Wrath you can alternate Holy Shock and Holy Light (and LoD/EF at 3 HP) due to the very short CD on Holy Shock.
  • Holy Avenger is a talent we can take.  Every Holy Power generator generates 3 Holy Power while active.  For max healing alternate Holy Shock – Finisher – Holy Radiance – Finisher if at ranged or if in melee and low on mana use Crusader strike instead of Holy Radiance.

Quick things to know but do little with:

  • Always have Seal of Insight active
  • Holy Shock has double your critical strike chance
  • Holy Paladins gain 5% additional crit from gear
  • Infusion of light reduces the cast time of Holy Light or Holy Radiance by 1.5sec after a Holy Shock crit.  Basically a Holy Light haste buff, don’t need to manage if you are using Holy Light regularly as your filler.
  • Enhanced Holy Shock is a level 92-100 perk.  10% chance for your Holy Light or Flash of Light to make your next Holy Shock not trigger a CD.  Just double up on Holy Shock when it procs.
  • Daybreak is a passive talent that lets your Holy Shock splash 15%/30%(+ 100 Perk) of its healing to up to 6 targets within 10 yards after you cast Holy Radiance.  Since Holy Radiance is rarely used due to its expensive and because Holy Shock is used on CD it is not something that needs to be managed closely.

Rotations are not completely realistic for healing, and it is important to pick the right heal for the job, when you need it.  But I believe it is helpful to know what the general flow of healing would be during sustained damage.

  • EF:  Holy Prism – Holy Shock – Holy Light – Holy Light – HS – HL – HL – HS – EF…
  • SS:  Holy Prism – Holy Shock – Sacred Shield – Holy Light – Holy Light – HS – HL – HL – HS – LoD – Sacred Shield…

C:  Utility

Holy Paladins have several spells that give significant utility and should be used frequently as it is a very important part of our tool kit:

  • Hand of Sacrifice – 30% damage reduction for the target.  This is your tank or “soak” CD to keep people alive for the hard hitting stuff.
  • Hand of Protection – Immunity to physical damage.  Frequently clears debuffs, can save squishy DPS from aggro pulls.
  • Hand of Freedom – Clears movement impairing effects, anytime there is a dangerous slow effect it should be used.
  • Divine Shield – Immunity for paladin.  Use for uninterrupted casting, clear debuffs, soaking big hits, high raid damage, almost dead, oh shit I mess that up movements, and many more!
  • Lay on Hands – Your huge instant save a Tank (or filthy DPS) spell.
  • Devotion Aura – Raid wide damage CD, reduces only magic damage but can save the raid regardless.

D:  Gearing

Currently the stat priority is for both EF and SS is:

  • Intellect > Crit > Haste >  Mastery = Mulstrike = Versatility.

Spirit should be taken on all available slots:  Neck, Cloak, Rings.  Trinkets will be valued separately.

Enchants, Gems, Food, and Flasks:

  • In WoD enchants, gems, and food are available in secondary stats only:  Crit, Haste, Mastery, Multi-strike, and Versatility.
  • Slots for enchants are neck, cloak, and rings.  Go critcal strike for all.  Weapon Enchant options are similar to the other enchants in that there are crit, haste, etc proc enchants but there is also a spirit enchant that is likely the best choice:  Mark of Shadowmoon.
  • All gems are prismatic.  Go Critical Strike for all.
  • Flasks are still primary stats.  Go Intellect:  Greater Draenic Intellect Flask.

BiS and Gearing:

In WoD there are multiple ways to obtain gear and many have random chance rolls to be a higher item level, have extra slots, have a gem socket.  Lots of ways through crafting and garrisons to obtain and upgrade gear as well.  BiS lists are hard to compile pre-raiding.  I recommend using AskMrRobot (with corrects stat weights) to value gear.  A very helpful gearing chart is also included in the gallery above.

Section 3:  It’s All in the Details:  Min-Max Section

The following section will have charts with more info about variations in rotations, talent, selections, and general min/max good/bad practices.

Healing Chart:

Did Blizzard actually balance our talents?  Chart must be wrong right?

  • The above looks at the projected HPS for the major talent choices.  Beacon of Insight assumes perfect execution of following beacon which provides a 30% buff to healing that jumps every time a player is topped off or receives a heal from the paladin.  The main take home of the above is that the talents are all very close although Sacred Shield has the highest mana cost.  For the extra work of managing SS and its cost Eternal flame is the not so clear winner.

Tier 75 Talents and Tier 17 4pc Set Bonus:

There is a ton on here, but I filtered out about 35 other variations ...

  • The above shows Sanctifed Wrath as the best sustained healing.  Holy Avenger has the best Burst when using Holy Radiance while active.  Divine Purpose averages below the others, scales best with T17 pc bonus.  Overall the set bonus is only a few percent more HPS due to the slow holy power generation limiting the number of our finishers.

Stat Weights:

Updated Stat Weights

Updated Stat Weights

Mana Consumption/Regen:

The most basic healing rotation costs 1500-1600 MPS.  Our base mana regen is 963 MPS.  Every 50 spirit is 21 more MPS.  At these values we will never be mana neutral as we will never get enough spirit to cast indefinitely and spirit will always buy time before OOM.

Crusader Strike Use:

I am not touching it

  • Simply posting the above chart to show that Crusader Strike is not a cheap way to boost Holy Power production and healing.  It is a loss for both.  Crusader Strike should only be used during Holy Avenger if you have that talent if you don’t have the mana for Holy Radiance.

Sub 3 HP Finishers:

Frequently people will think they are better off casting 1 HP finishers to get more EF or LoD out.  This is especially not a good habit to have in WoD because our HP finishers are not that much stronger than our other spells even at 3 HP and with EF the number of HP determine the length of the HoT.   Casting 1 Holy Power finishers is more than not optimal, it is a HPS loss compared to just casting Holy light (a 1 hp EF is 1/2 the healing of a Holy light).

Thanks for reading, the guide is a work in progress and will be updated as the expansion, tuning, and creative game play evolves the holy paladin class.

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