Holy Heck

This Ret Paladin gig is tough. Not trusting myself to heal through heroic dgns until I get better gear I’ve taken up Retting.  And melee dps in a dgn is a far cry (for me anyway) from the simple hack and slash strategy that I took for the last 90 levels.

I’ve had a bit of a mindset that I’m going to be a holy pally at 90 and anything I do along the way is simply to get me there so that pretty much means I never bothered to learn anything about the ret pally short of hit this button because its flashing and the mob will eventually die if I hit it enough. But hmm now I see there is so much to it:

  1.  Keep Inquisition up at all times,  but at its maximum it only lasts for 30 secs. Man do I let it fall off a lot.
  2. Use Templer’s Verdict on CD, but hang on it uses the same power source (holy power) as Inquisition, now I have to sometimes chose which I want to use because I don’t have enough holy power for both.
  3. Use  Hammer of Wrath, Exorcism, Crusader Strike and Judgment on CD.. wait wait too many buttons on CD. Sometimes I’m searching for spells that are lit up and other times everything is flashing, ready to be used, all at once. Overload central. I’m sure there’s more, this is what I remember from the Icy Veins guide to being an effective Paladin.

And this melee range is annoying. While questing I was a ranged Paladin, standing back and throwing hammers until the mob charged into range and there it would stay at my feet while I whaled on it. But now I spend as much time chasing mobs around the dgns as I do hitting them. DK tanks  tease me, they wait until I’ve run up to the mob and then they yank it away leaving me staring at empty space.  I think my ranged and healing bias is starting to show; I really don’t enjoy standing in melee range  and  I can’t see anything.

After countless dungeons and a few scenarios and turning the Justice points I’ve accumulated into 476 honor gear I have a holy ilvl of 448 (460 overall so I can just sneak into the first 2 lfrs) so I think its time I put the ret aside and embraced the holy.. we’ll see how it goes.

ranged paladin

I love this talent (it’s a lvl 90 one, which one I can’t remember, the far right one I think) a big spinning hammer drops onto mob’s heads, love it.


19 thoughts on “Holy Heck

  1. Ha! How spooky is that. After an entire expansion of leaving my pally lurking in the wings, I’ve finally decided to start levelling her again, but I’m rubbish at anything involving melee … the amount of times I’ve stood in dungeons spamming buttons, furious they didn’t seem to be working, only to realise I was facing the wrong way … or couldn’t work out “which one was me”. Unlike you, I’ve been levelling in tank spec (mainly because I hate dying), but I’m too much of a coward to tank for pugs, so decided the only way forward was to reinvestigate holy. So this morning was spent re-gearing, choosing talents and glyphs and reading up on the spells to use. Now I just have to find a victim … erm .. volunteer … to help me through my first instances 😛

    • Hehe, yep the amount of times I’ve stood there thinking I’m in melee range and I have to move in even more. I’m always dancing around the edges. I haven’t tried prot before. Good luck with the healing 🙂 Let me know how it goes

      • I had my first go last night and it wasn’t a massive success (accidentally clicking out of WoW and than panicking so much I couldn’t remember how to get back in was a highlight!) .. but only one person died (other than one wipe at the end), and that was more down to the fight than me.

        I did discover a few things .

        – there are too many spells! I’ve healed for years on my priest and they’ve all become second nature – all the spells on the pally are confusing me and a lot of them sound and look the same (Holy this and Holy that). I suspect this is just practice tho.

        – managing Holy Power … its really annoying not being able to cast some of my “standard” spells because I’m low on Holy Power. I’m used to being able to cast any spell at any time, mana permitting.

        – mana … *eek*. Admittedly my gear is pretty darn bad … it is generally a mix of stuff I made with my BS, the odd “Treasures of Pandaria” find (yes, I’m using a parasol as a shield …) and the stuff you can buy off the wandering gear vendor. It also didn’t help that I went into my first instance with no mana pots (despite being an alchemist!) and no mana food. But also, you’re apparently supposed to top up mana by using Crusader Strike. Which means (a) I have to be in melee range which, as mentioned before, I’m really bad at, and (b) I have to remember to use that whilst trying to keep the group alive.

        – seals .. I’m using an alternative UI called elvui and for some reason it doesn’t show when my seal is up. (I have an overwhelming urge here to make sea-lion noises!) Probably something I’m going to have to look into.


        At the moment I’m trying to use the AoE/Raid healing rotation from Icy Veins, but looking at it, perhaps it would be easier, at least to start, to go down the tank healing route.

        • lol, so much of you wrote I found out today. I did the 2nd half of MV lfr as holy. I actually sent an email to a pally friend during setting up vuhdo saying so many spells!. And yes holy, holy, holy and the amount of differents shields and hands I can chose from.
          Mana – hmm on MV final boss, no way was I going near the twin bosses to C.S them, I just took swipes at adds as they came past and cast holy light a lot, i think thats the small inexpensive heal 🙂 It lit up a lot and I kept trying to use it on proc and tried to remember to I should probably be using the proc on a divine light or holy radience I think for the reduced mana/cast time.
          Also – how many holy pally dread wastes quest rewards (follow that? 🙂 don’t have spirit as a stat. My spirit is quite low despite reforging and having a parasol too 🙂
          I’m using elvui too, I’ll have to see if it shows it for me. I also run bartender4 and it has its own stance bar so I could see what seal I had enabled then.
          Is it normal to only get two eternal flames from a full holy power bar? That holy power doesnt seem to go far.
          But despite all that, it was fun 🙂 I’ve valor capped her so tomorrow with reset I can throw her back into lfrs and play some more.

          • I think one of my main problems is that I try to have my buttons in roughly the same place across all my characters. I realise that sounds odd, but I have so many alts so I try to organise stuff so that similar things are in similar places. So I always have my *eek* spells in the same place, any damage mitigation in the same place, etc. Same for healing … I use Healbot and tend to use middle button as my individual instant cast HoT button, right as the big heal, left as the smaller heal, then various modifications for my “arrrgh … tank is about to die” spells, etc. Which I must move, as it’s too close to my Windows key 😛

            So I’m trying to establish which of the pally spells fit into those classifications. It doesn’t help that the mouse I’m currently using really isn’t very comfortable to use, but I’m tight and refuse to buy another one until this one breaks 😛

            From what I can gather, the Eternal flame uses a maximum of 3 holy power, although you can use it with only one holy power (with reduced effect). As the maximum holy power you can hold is 5, then if you’re doing 2 flames one after the other, the first will use it’s maximum of 3, the next will use the remaining 2. Yes .. it’s annoying. I’ve got that spell on my “individual HoT” button and I’m not used to being restricted on when I can use that!

            I’m going to attempt to respec/change rotations to the tank healing, as just on paper it looks more like the type of healing I’m used to. Hopefully from there I can move onto the more recommended AoE healing rotation once I’ve got used to it a little more. Plus, as I’m not yet 90 and am going to be levelling the last few levels through instances, in theory there will probably be more tank healing and less group healing to do.

  2. I feel your pain! I’m not much of a fan of melee classes either. I do have a Ret set on my pally, but I don’t dps with her often except for dailies and the very very rare occasion we’re short dps in the main raid and it’s a 2 heal fight.
    Personally, I find Ret boring to play. Yes there’s a few buttons to hit and it’s annoying when they’re all available, but I find it far more annoying when they’re all on cooldown and I’m just standing there waiting for a button to push. I have exactly the same issues you mentioned – dunno where I am, facing the wrong way. Such a pain. Having said that, I don’t mind my DK tank and my monk… I don’t have those issues so much. Although I had to change race on my DK – she was a gnome first but I struggled to see her/enemies properly because everything was lower, so I changed her to Dranaei.

    Anyway, holy is wonderful fun. If you need a hand or anything just let me know. I’m not the greatest in the world by any stretch, but I’m happy to offer some advice if you would like it. 🙂 Most of all, have fun with it!

    • I didn’t mind it while questing and I have an 80 warrior and dk (who also levelled only through questing) so I should be used to melee, it’s just such a difference the way you attack in a dgn to how you act while questing, well for me anyway lol.
      It will be interesting to see if I have the same issues with the other classes if I take them into dgns. Through I really don’t like the up close and personal of melee it might grow on me.
      I’ll try not to spam you too much with questions but if you have any tips throw them my way :).
      I’m hoping I do like holy, I did a dgn on falu (my holy priest) yesterday for the bag of mysteries reward for healers that was up and it felt so clunky, I’m so used to and love the way a druid heals.

      • I started healing on my druid at the start of cata when holy priest healing was just painful, and I loved it. Compared to the priest it is so much more relaxing and just feels more natural (fairly apt, probably!). I’ve not done much healing with her this expansion tho, as the priest is my “main” and she gets the majority of the attention (she’s also the GM so it feels right that she should always have more time spent on her, or she’ll sulk 😛 )

        @cinder … I did the same with my DK, although I’m generally horde so he’s a Tauren. Can see him in most fights! Plus, with DK’s you can still do a little bit of dps with your back to the crowd, at least, just to cover your newbishness until you realise and turn around. Strangely tho, my poor Tauren is now tiny on my loading screen .. think he’s been hit with a reverse world-shrinking ray!

  3. lol I remember the initial dgn healing I did on my druid. I levelled her after my holy priest and started healing dgns around the lvl 30 mark (after dual speccing). I had visions of horror healing on mana fumes that my priest experienced and feeling stressed about it and instead my druid just flowed through it all . Possibly it was a combination of I was more experienced at healing and the druid’s natural ability to still heal on mana fumes but I was in love with druid healing from then on

    • I think as well, holy healing and druid healing are opposite types of healing. Holy is a lot more reactive (omg, tank is taking massive damage … spam heal spam heal! *breathes hard*), whereas the druid is a lot more proactive … I know the tank is going to get hit .. stockpile heals on the tank and lets look at the sky for a bit, whilst humming gently …

      The only thing that the druid doesn’t do so well, for me anyway, is that big “the tank is about to die, pull out the big guns” spell. They do Battle Rez tho 😛

      • lol ‘humming gently’, love that image. Yeah I find even now at 90 I feel way more relaxed on the druid though I do love the oh crap buttons a priest has.. I get regrowth spam, barkskin and if i’ planned ahead a mush bloom, H priests get shields, void shift, wings as well as flash heal spam, all so cool to use 🙂 But still, I love druid 🙂

        • I think the other problem is, I very occasionally tend to “zone out” mentally. I really shouldn’t do that while priest or pally healing, because you suddenly realise the tank is nearly dead .. then you panic and all heck breaks loose. Although I wouldn’t recommend it, you can actually get away with “zoning out” briefly with the druid .. heck, you can continue healing virtually with your eyes closed because it’s almost like stirring soup … repetitive and relaxing. (I’m hungry, otherwise I would have compared it to stroking a cat 😛 )

  4. You guys have the right idea. Mana is always going to be a right pain in the butt, but you get used to it. Best tips I can give you:
    1. Yes, be in melee to hit something, but remember – it doesn’t matter what you hit, as long as it’s something. And it’s not just Crusader Strike that gives you back mana – just your normal melee hits will do it too, so do it as often as you can (they can also heal you). Also, CS will generate one holy power, so it’s worth it.
    2. At the moment the best build is a mastery build for Illuminated Healing. IH is an absorb, and the more you heal that person the bigger the absorb is. The idea is that you don’t stop casting, ever. Keep casting Holy Light on everyone (that’s the little one). Do it on yourself first. You’ll see the absorb. Spam any heals on yourself and watch it go up – it can/2 get pretty massive 😀
    3. Holy Shock on cooldown. It’s instant and it generates a holy power. This is your best friend 🙂
    4. Make sure you have your beacon on someone at all times. I’d suggest glyphing it so it’s off GCD so you can swap it between the tanks mid fight.
    5. Casting Divine Light on the target with beacon on them will generate a holy power
    6. Holy Radiance (AOE heal) will generate a holy power. It will also give you “daybreak” which will heal (for 75% of original healing done) those around the target you do a Holy Shock on. This STACKS, so for times of intense healing, do 2 Holy Radiance (granting 150% healing done) and then holy shock someone with loads of people around them, and you’re laughing 🙂
    7. Eternal flame is best if you also have Divine Purpose as your talent. When DP procs it’ll give you 3 free holy power which is the bees knees. Some people don’t get good procs of this – I’ve been known to get 8 in a row. So, see how you go. Anyway, you can Eternal Flame with 1 holy power – and I’d recommend it. Blanket everyone in the raid with this and top up with Holy Light to keep Illuminated Healing going.
    8. Level 90 talent – I recommend only using Light’s Hammer if everyone is stacked for the duration of it, otherwise Holy Prism is best (it’s instant and is a great AOE you can do on the run).
    9. Use Divine Favor and Avenging Wrath TOGETHER.

    My basic rotation is:
    Before the pull, build up holy power so I have 5.
    On the pull, I’ll put a 3 holy power Eternal Flame on the tank, and the rest on the offtank (or the next person you know is going to take a beating). If DP procs, just put EF on as many as you can.
    Holy shock all the time, and put 1 charge Eternal Flames on everyone.
    In between, cast Holy Light on everyone all the time to keep the Illuminated Healing going.
    When things get intense, Divine Light is good, but mana heavy. A 3 charged Eternal Flame will actually heal for nearly the same amount as a Divine Light and because it’s instant, it’s a lifesaver at times.
    For AOE heals I’ll do 2 Holy Radiance, then a Holy Shock, followed by a 3 holy power charged Light of Dawn.

    That’s about it… Sorry that was long. I hope it helps though!

  5. don’t be sorry, its excellent. I’ve written down all your tips.
    I’ll go and check out the talents I’ve taken.
    I had read that you should blanket with E. Flame but was wondering how you did then when 2 took all the power :p, I’ll work on the single charge flames.
    So far from what I’ve seen its going to be pretty fun
    And I”ve found 2 ppl to chatter about pallies to, even better 🙂

  6. It’s funny hearing so many people complain about melee when I tend to gravitate towards it. I have feral, ret, warrior, and dk all at 90. I definitely know the frustrations though. It’s even more frustrating playing a melee that HAS to attack from behind. All melee should be behind the boss, but most still work in front. A bad tank can break a melee. A good tank can make melee easy. Unfortunately you rarely see good ones in randoms.

    The keybinds on my buttons turn red when I’m not in range though so that helps. I find placing a mark on the tank helps as well. I use InLineAuras to track timers on my buttons themselves in addition to NeedToKnow or WeakAuras to track different things.

    I do the same as Sprowt mentioned and try and keep things in similar places on all my characters. Short cooldowns in specific spots, defensive cooldowns in other spots, aoe buttons in the same spots, etc. I’ve found that difficult though with healing and I have to open vuhdo to remember what all of my different click casts are set to. I tend to duplicate some things as mouseover macros as well, because I’ll forget what the click cast is.

    • I guess its what you’re most comfortable with, my first five alts were all ranged/heals so its taking a big mindset to change 🙂
      It’s funny that you mention that about melee having to be behind, I never really realised how important it is for some classes to be behind until I joined my current raid team and I hear the rogue to occassionly call for the boss to be moved a few steps forward.
      I”m the same I try to set up my keys/vuhdo as similar as possible, E, R for dots etc and Shift+ left click for my fast heal and so on, does make it easier to pick up and run on a toon I haven’t played for a while.

      • Unless things have changed, its not only important for some classes to be behind, but also all melee should be behind because if they’re in front of the boss there is a chance the boss can dodge the attack and, if I’m remembering correctly, some have the opportunity to do a double attack or something if they’ve just dodged something? I can’t remember the exact ins and outs, I just remember that if a melee is in front of the boss, it could cause a response from the boss that may cause extra damage to the tank. Plus, of course, some bosses do cleaves etc, so it’s still a bad idea to be in front 😉

  7. I hadn’t realised that ANY melee generated mana and a bit of self healing. I did as threatened and retalented a bit in order to go down the tank healing route, then had a play last night. Now admittedly I was with a slightly better group this time than last, although it was still the same instance so a fairly good comparison run, and it felt a lot more natural. I remembered to take mana pots and food this time (do’h!), but generally i panicked a lot less and only once got close to having no mana. I’ll probably stick to that for now, simply because it gives me time to get familiar with my buttons.
    After reading what Cinder said, I concentrated less on using CS, and simply used my white/melee attacks, then used the CS when I remembered and when I had time. I think as well, because I’m so used to being at the back, both as healer and dps classes, that it feels unnatural for me to be running into melee range. I’ve spent years drilling it into guildees (and myself) about reducing threat generation by increasing distance that it just feels odd running in close 😛

  8. After doing the lfrs’s again I gave healing in a few five mans a go. It was really good though I was drinking a bit between pulls, more than I’d like but gear and better spell selection will fix that. There were still a few bosses I stayed at range on though (the sha in shadopan monastry – I’m not going near him, he intimidates me for some reason) but overall it was really fun and no one died, always a boost to the confidence 🙂
    It’s great spamming holy light and just watching the numerical value of the aborb skyrocket; I like seeing that a lot.

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