Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Here Comes the Judge: Spell Rotation


This is where the rubber hits the road. And part 3 of this dig into my methodology is by far the most involved. this is partly due to the nature of it, but also due to the fact that PvE and PvP have some very different requirements (and limitations)


My spell of first choice in PVE is Exorcism. It’s instant cast, it's a Pally’s only “ranged” attack (30 yards vs 10 yards for regular Judgements) and, when it gets a critical hit (when it “crits”) I can hit for over 600 damage! WooHoo!!! Once Patch 3.2 hits, I'm not sure WHAT I'll do, because it will require a 1.5 second (interruptable) spell cast time. I will still use it, but it will completely FUCK my PvE playing.

Next is either Judgement of Wisdom or Judgment of Light. Since I’m usually more likely to be hurting for mana (also, I often quest with a healy Shaman which is mana intensive too), I usually use Wisdom. When the foes get a bit tougher, and I’m worried about health, I’ll use Light.

My usual fight consists of:

Exorcism – Judge – Judge – (Judge?) – Exorcism – Judge – Judge – (Judge?) … ad infinitum with auto attacks during the cooldowns.

If the guy I’m fighting is a Boss, or a tougher than usual character or if there are multiple mobs I’m going to be fighting at once, I will follow the above sequence EXCEPT I will use Hammer of Justice on the “baddest” enemy as soon as the enemy is within melee range. This stuns him for 4 seconds and interrupts any spells he was casting. This is to limit how much damage, and how quickly I take damage.

In cases where there is more than 1 enemy, (of any significant threat) I will cast Consecration just before they get within melee range (or, just as they get in Consecration range) I will still use the above rotation, but I will add Consecration into the rotation every time it comes off CoolDown (“CD”) I don’t really LIKE Consecration (It costs a TON of mana, and it doesn’t do THAT much damage) but it’s the only Damage Over Time (DOT) and only Area of Effect (AoE – affects multiple targets at once) spells Pallies have, and anything that shortens the fight (and how long we are taking damage) it’s a good thing. You are pretty much guaranteed to need to drink a mana potion after any fight where this gets used.

During these same circumstances, I will often cast Divine Protection right as the melee fight starts. It’s “only” 12 seconds and “only” reduces damage by 50%, but it’s a life saver. Due to the long effective CD (2 minutes before you can receive it again) I don’t use it unless it’s really needed. Divine Protection is “ok”, but it cuts YOUR attack damage by half, so, even though it slows how quickly you die, it also slows how quickly THEY die… and with multiple bad guys, that means you’re getting hit by THEM for more time. Bad idea. I will use Divine Shield when I need to heal (and still have mana left) but it's not ideal.

If I’m tanking, and someone else in my party is taking more damage than they can/should, I will cast Righteous Defense, to get them to attack me instead.

The only other odd or “quirky” spell I will use is Turn Evil. It sends evil (undead, demons AND MINIONS!) running away for 20 seconds. It’s simply a way of keeping multiple enemies from attacking you at once. It only works on certain types (listed above) so it’s very situational, but it does come in handy.

If absolutely needed (for escape, or chasing) and IF I have been iced in place, or webbed in place, I will cast Hand of Freedom on myself to be able to move.

OH! Healing! Um, I heal as needed. Even though Rets aren’t Holy, we CAN do a fair share of healing; on ourselves as well as any party members. Usually I leave most healing until after the battle is over, but sometimes, it’s mandatory to replenish during the fight. So here’s my “SOP” for in fight healing.

1 – Gift of Naaru: It’s a racial ability for us Draenei. At level 35-39, it heals 560 points over 15 seconds. It’s NOT a major “OH SHIT!” button to be used at the last moment. It should be “This fight is lasting a while, and I’m GOING to get low on health.” You need to be able to survive for 15 seconds to get the full benefit, so I use it a bit earlier than I feel.

2 – If I haven’t used it already, I use Divine Protection. It SHOULD have been cast already, but this is my time to check/make sure.

3 – I will use a healing potion now. I don’t use it first, since I might need to take a mana potion.

4 – If I can, I will cast Holy Light. (I don’t bother with Flash of Light for myself – you will probably lose more health than you gain during the casting time – Yes, Holy is nearly twice as slow, but can give you 4-5 times as much health)

5 – Lay on Hands (LoH) – the final “OH SHIT” button. The good news is that it SHOULD buy you lot more time to fight, heal, mana up, etc (and the spell gives you a little mana to boot ANNND reduces the damage you take for a time afterwards!!)

If someone else in the party needs healing, I will help if I can, but in PVE, I focus on tanking/DPS, so I will be slow at best. To be brutally honest, if it comes down to another party member or me being saved (especially if they are about out of mana, or there are a bunch of enemies left and the party member is squishy) I will save myself first. I can take more punishment and continue fighting, LoH myself if needed, and then resurrect them after the fight. If I save them, and end up dying myself, it can often mean a wipe.


The first, and most frustrating thing is that as of now (pre Patch 3.2) Exorcism doesn't work in PvP. Not even against Minions. (It will be re-introduced in PvP in 3.2)

As for how I fight, it really depends on the situation:

Killing an enemy flag carrier:

  • Hammer of Justice - Nothing slows a running flag like a 3-4 second stun
  • Judgement of Justice - The next best thing (in our arsenal) is this. IT will slow the enemy down so he can be caught more easily.
  • Consecration - Once the "dash" slows (if it does), I will cast this. It does slow damageto ANY enemy around.
  • Auto-attack - when sitting on CD, (which is a LOT of the time) I simply keep swinging my sword.
  • Repeat.

Protecting OUR flag carrier (me or someone else) - both are about the same

  • Hand of Freedom - Put this on as soon as carrier gets close to enemies.
  • DO NOT cast Divine Dhield. (at least on yourself, haven't tried it on others) If you cast it on yourself before you grab the flag, you won't be able to pick it up. If you cast it on yourself when you have the flag YOU WILL DROP IT!!! (not good)
  • Divine Protection has worked fine for me (but only protects 50%)
  • Cast Judgement of Justice (JoJ) and Hammer of Justice (HoJ) on any folks that get too close behind
  • I will cast consecration as I run simply to injur the folks chasing me/us.
  • Keep close to the Lay on Hands (LoH) to heal/save the carrier.
  • If I'm the protector, and not the carrier, I will sometimes drop back a bit, and hit the chasers, trying to get a "Seal of Justice" proc that will stun the follower.

Grabbing the Flag (in their base)

  • I usually drop from the blacony. I cast Hand of Freedom as I fall, I cast Gift of Naaru as I run (It's a "HoT" - heal over time) and after I grab it, I run like hell. I think Divine Protection works ok here.
  • I keep my finger/mouse on the LoH button so tha twhen/if I get low on health I can make it a little further.

General PvP Fighting.

This is the toughest, and the most variable. I will HoJ stun ranged attackers (Mages, Warlocks and Hunters) and Rogues (and theire damnable stuns) Then, once I close the gap, I just Judge, Consecrate and auto-attack.

For Melee attackers, I will hold off on HoJ, and rely on JoJ to stun them. I TRY to wait on using the HoJ until I need to heal.

Always try to fight in a group. Save team mates as best you can, but if the odds are 3:1 or 4:1 against, better hold off, unless there's incoming help as well. Because chances are, as soon as you engage in a 1:2 or 2:3 engagement, THEY will get help, and you get to spend 25-30 seconds waiting to respawn...


  1. Just want to let you know that even though I don't have a pally, I really enjoy your blog.

  2. Thanks! (and it's never too late to re-roll... come to the dark side!) erm, "light" side? ;)