Retribution Paladin Cataclysm Changes

See my Retribution Paladin Cataclysm Changes Posts!

Retribution Paladin Cataclysm changes are now here!  Expect a lot to be changed between now and Cataclysm launch…I mean A LOT.  What we are seeing now is the framework for Blizzard to build upon.  As Ret Paladins continue through the Cataclysm Beta, adjustments will be made, and I will be sure to keep them current here!


Holy Power

A new combat resource for Paladins.  Will accumulate with Crusader Strike, Holy Shock, and other abilities.  For Ret Paladins, Holy Power will be consumed to activate strong melee attacks. Right now, this appears similar to the Death Knight rune system.

  • Divine Storm’s damage increased with Holy Power.
  • Templar’s Verdict: An instant weapon attack that causes a percentage of weapon damage. Consumes all applications of Holy Power to increase damage dealt: 1 Holy Power at 55% weapon damage. 2 Holy Power at 125% weapon damage.  3 Holy Power at 225% weapon damage
  • Inquisition consumes Holy Power to increase your Holy Damage by 30%. Lasts 10 sec per charge of Holy Power consumed.
  • Zealotry causes your Crusader Strike generates 3 stacks of Holy Power per strike for the next 30 sec. Requires 3 stacks of Holy Power to use.

Ret Paladin Cataclysm Talent Tree Points

Here is my current set-up were Cataclysm to go live tomorrow: Ret Paladin Cataclysm Talent Tree

New build yet again!  The current talent tree moves Templar’s Verdict out as a Primary Skill, along with Judgements of the Wise.  Divine Storm hurls its way back into the talent tree.  With this new build, several talents are completely gone, allowing for more points to be freed up.  These points can now be spent deeper into Holy or Prot, as the previous build only really had us with 3 available points.  Based on what I do with the calculator, I have anywhere from 7 to 9 free points now!

New Cataclysm Paladin Abilities

  • Healing Hands – Heals all friendly targets within 10 yards for 683 every sec. Lasts 10 sec.
    40% of base mana, Instant cast
  • Divine Light – Heals a friendly target for 7762 to 8648.
    30% of base mana, 3 sec cast
  • Judgement of Vengeance – Deals (1 + 0.22 * holy power.14 * AP) Holy damage to an enemy, increased by 10% for each application of Blood Corruption on the target.
  • Great Exarch’s Elekk
  • Great Sunwalker Kodo
  • Exarch’s Elekk
  • Sunwalker Kodo
  • Rebuke – Interrupts spellcasting and prevents any spell in that school from being cast for 4 sec. 10 Mana, 5 yd range, Instant cast, 10 sec cooldown
  • Inquisition – Lvl 83 – Consumes Holy Power to increase your Holy Damage by 30%. Lasts 10 sec per charge of Holy Power consumed.  20% of base mana, Instant cast
  • Zealotry – Your Crusader Strike generates 3 stacks of Holy Power per strike for the next 30 sec. Requires 3 stacks of Holy Power to use.  Instant, 30 min cooldown
  • Wrath of the Lightbringer – Increases the critical strike chance of your Holy Wrath ability by 25% and reduces the cooldown of your Avenging Wrath ability by 0.5/1 sec. /
  • Improved Crusader Strike – Increases the damage of your Crusader Strike by 15/30% and decreases its cooldown by 1.5/3 sec.
  • Templar’s Verdict – An instant weapon attack that causes a percentage of weapon damage. Consumes all applications of Holy Power to increase damage dealt:
    1 Holy Power: 55% Weapon Damage
    2 Holy Power: 125% Weapon Damage
    3 Holy Power: 225% Weapon Damage
    20% of base mana, 5 yd range, Instant cast
  • Rule of Law – Increases the critical strike effect chance of your Crusader Strike and Holy Light by 5/10/15%.

Ret Paladin Ability Changes

(Updated 7/17/2010)

Crusader StrikeNew Crusader Strike / Old Crusader Strike

  • New Crusader Strike available at level 1.
  • Now deals 100% weapon damage instead of 75%.

Judgement of LightNew Judgement of Light / Old Judgement of Light

  • New Judgement of Light only returns 1% of maximum health instead of 2%.

Hammer of WrathNew Hammer of Wrath / Old Hammer of Wrath

  • New HoW uses Holy Power instead of SPH.

Blessing of MightNew Blessing of Might / Old Blessing of Might

  • New Blessing of Might grants a flat 10% attack power and mana per 5 seconds.
  • Also is a party/raid wide buff, meaning the greater versions can only be applied one at a time by a single Paladin.
  • One buff to apply to all party/raid members.
  • Now available at level 56 instead of level 4.

Blessing of Wisdom / Blessing of Sanctuary

  • Both gone.
  • Sanctuary a Prot talent now.

Blessing of Kings [Source]

  • Now increases Strength, Stamina, Agility, and Intellect by 5% and all magical resistances by 214.
  • Also is a party/raid wide buff, meaning the greater versions can only be applied one at a time by a single Paladin.
  • One buff to apply to all party/raid members.

Seal of Vengeance/CorruptionNew Seal of Vengeance / Old Seal of Vengeance

  • Uses Holy Power instead of SPH.

Judgement of JusticeJudgement of Justice

  • Now available at level 68 instead of level 28.

Consecration New Consecration / Old Consecration [Source]

  • Duration increased to 15 seconds.
  • Can now crit at 150% damage. Uses spell crit table.
  • Damage calculation (per tick) has been decreased from 4% of AP and SP to 2% of AP and SP

Judgement of Wisdom

  • Gone.

Ret Paladin Retribution Talent Tree Changes

Ret Paladin Cataclysm Talent Tree <– Link!

Khor’s Thoughts

Crusader Strike

  • Crusader Strike changes are a straight up buff for us. And as if leveling wasn’t easy enough for Ret Paladins already, this staple melee ability will be available from character creation and on.  The increase in damage to 100% is outstanding, and looks to be buffed further via talents.  This will help counter the Divine Storm nerf.  Look for this and Judgement to be the core of our melee rotations.  Also, we’re seeing as much as a 30% damage increase to CS via talents.

Divine Storm

  • With the Holy Power changes, Divine Storm may retain some of its utility.  However, it would appear other, more single target focused Ret attacks using Holy Power may still take priority.

Judgement of Vengeance

  • I haven’t seen too much on this yet, but with 5 stacks of Seal of Vengeance on a target, Judgement of Vengeance hits 50% harder, or 10% for each stack.  This is extremely intriguing, and could have a hefty impact on our DPS.  This definitely fits into the single target DPS role, pushing aside Judgements of Light and Wisdom.  More to come on this for sure…


  1. Nagasaky says:

    New vindication seems to be usable, not like the actual one.

    However, I still don’t know what SPH is.

  2. Thaldai says:

    O.o Great Exarch’s Elekk, I’m draenei so this is for something for me

  3. Holyway says:

    Our one target damage is nerfed a lot this way, i dont like the divine storm change… it should be a glyphed or talented to this new version.

  4. Holyway says:

    Oh, and i still dont see the new interrupt spell they promised we get… and i would be happy for an ms-like ability, or some kind of a gap closer too.

    Hope for the best 😀

  5. paul says:

    This Is a Great resource! I love this site, it has every thing any paladin could need, Thank you for this post especially because i has been wondering how cataclysm will change paladins, Thank you!

  6. Tarirsus says:

    Most of the changes are nice but the big nerf to divine storm seems to be unbalanced. This is just using figures off the top of my head but to get the damage you are getting now at 110% back you would have to attack 8 targets or more with your DS. This would also mean that DS would be of little use in boss encounters as the reduction in damagr.

    Just wondering what other pally think of the nerf.

  7. Xav says:

    Ok, I don’t know what’s the ratio between SPH (Spell Power Healing I guess) and Holy Power, but if it is not Holy Power = SPH/100 then Hammer of Wrath and Seal of Vengeance are going to crush enemies with 100k+ hits 😀

    Now I don’t like the nerf to Judgment of Light since it is a utility spell in dungeons and PvP and looks like mana usage from the new healing spells is prohibitive.

    Let’s see how they adjust as time pass.

  8. RetForever says:

    Our Divine Storm is getting nerfed but remember our Crusader Strike is getting a significant damage boost. Right now it starts off at 75% weapon damage and it gets talented to 93%. The new one will start at 100% with an ‘additional’ talent that gives it +10%. So it ‘could’ be up to 128% weapon damage talented. Now considering that we do 2.5 Crusader Strikes for every Divine Storm (ignoring the T10 set bonus), it could more than make up for the Divine Storm nerf.

    Our slightly overpowered AOE is getting nerfed while keeping our single target DPS roughly the same. It also makes our bread-and-butter attack what it should be, instead of having an AOE ability which actually hits harder on single targets.

  9. Khor says:

    Updated! Keep checking back, I will keep posting changes as they come!

  10. Nagasaky says:

    214 spell resistance, good, but 5%… anyway, will it stack with resistance auras?

  11. Khor says:

    From what I’ve read, it will not stack.

  12. Holyway says:

    Thx for the lots of info Khor! As i read thru the updates, im more and more curious what blizz wanna do with us 😀

  13. Pheonera says:

    Hey Khor i just wanted to point out that Judgement of Vengance/Corruption reads exactly like the Judgment effect of that spell, so its probably an error. I also wanted to ask and see if you knew where the Guardian of Ancient Kings was getting placed, cause it seems like we ret pallys got the shaft when it came to late level spells in LK and seems to be a continuing trend in Cata.

  14. Khor says:

    Thanks for the heads up Pheonera! My understanding is that the closed Beta is only up to level 82 at the moment, so the level 85 spells have yet to be released. We will know more about the missing Paladin spells and abilities in the near future (I hope).

  15. Ronark says:

    The “new” Vindication is actually s nerf to PvE, as 500 or so attack power evens out to an average of 15% reduced Physical damage.

    In PvP, however, it is for the most part a buff- It will help more with Warriors, Rogues, Druids, Hunters, and Shaman (where 10% of AP is more than the static 500 or so nowadays in end-tier gear).

  16. Khor says:

    Hey Ronark, I agree with you for level 80, but at level 85, I’m not sure how it all scales. I’m led to believe it is a more well-rounded talent. The bosses, from the rumblings I have heard, are supposed to hit pretty hard, allowing the 10% to scale better than the AP debuff would. I could be wrong…

  17. Vindi says:

    So… with our burst being limited in effectiveness thanks to the health pool change, and losing cleanse. There’s nothing here that’s going to help in PvP at all.

    I can’t see how these changes are all that we’re going to receive in Cata. The cleanse nerf can’t be overstated in scale, and there’s absolutely no offensive utility to make up for it yet. If something doesn’t give, then Ret’s will be useless in PvP again like they were in TBC.

  18. Pimpmybubble says:

    Khor do you believe that our dps is actually going to be higher?Because with those new buffs we get im pretty sure there’s gonna be alot QQ

  19. Khor says:

    I think our DPS will be about on par with where it is now…but I think our AoE is going to take a sizeable hit. When you think about it, Paladins are great single target healers, great AoE and threat tanks, very solid single target DPS, and outstanding AoE DPSers. We can easily compete for top performance in any of these categories, which makes our utility extremly viable and valuable compared to other classes.

    I think Blizz is trying to even the playing field by letting other AoE classes gain back their upper echelon performances. Nerfing our AOE is a good way to do this. We will still do mediocre AoE DPS (from what we see right now), but it won’t be anywhere near what it is in ICC.

    Also, remember, the 2 T10 bonus is one of the strongest DPS boosts we have had to date. Once that is gone, Divine Storm will slide very quickly to the later parts of our DPS rotations. It would not surprise me (if we keep FCFS in Cata), to see DS 4th or 5th on our priority list.

    So, to answer your question, I think on single target DPS we will be okay, but AoE DPS remains to be seen…

  20. Mythic says:

    So, what’s the cooldown on Templars verdict? If there no cooldown, or its the same as crusader strike, you could use zealotry and pull some major dps

  21. Revvy says:

    Dinged 80 with my pally last night. This site has motivated me to make my pally my main out of my other 3 80s. Thanks Khor for the site! ^^

  22. Zaleron says:

    currently templar’s verdict has no cooldown so yes with zealotry you can spam 3 HP TV’s with the only restricition being the crusader strike cooldown

  23. Tangysauce says:

    I was just wondering if anyone knew what the transition from leveling in wotlk, to leveling in cata is going to be like. Because i’ve heard that people who don’t have icc gear are going to have a tough time getting to 85, is this in anyway true? If so how will this effect people and their alts?

  24. Khor says:

    Leveling won’t be hard as much as it will be time consuming. True, for ICC geared players, it will be easier, but the gear in Cata will start evening out around 83 or 84. By 85, don’t be surprised if as much as half to all of your gear will be replaced.

    That said, the 2 T10 bonus is still phenomenal with DS in its current Beta state. Keeping this intact to 85 is a very real possibility at the moment.

  25. Xayos says:

    To me it looks like Blizz is throwing some rogue talents to the paladin, with the Inquisition being similar to slice and dice and of course the somewhat combo point system. Furthermore, I notice that everyone is talking about how the divine storm nerf is going to hurt are dps? With DS doing additional damage for each holy power (unless something got changed) and the same with Templar’s Verdict I would think DS should be completely taken out of our rotation for single target. Are AoE wont be nearly as good but with TV doing 225% weapon damage are single target is getting a large nuke.

  26. Psychosaiyan says:

    Well from what I have read here and on MMO, the talent Divine Purpose will help with our AoE. I don’t know what it is currently in Beta, but according to MMO (9/15/10) it says that at 2 ranks, Judgement, Exorcism, Templar’s Verdict, Divine Storm, Inquisition, and Holy Wrath all have a 40% chance to generate Holy Power.

    So here is what I am thinking…

    To make math simpler, lets just say its a 50% chance to proc
    Y = DS did proc, N= DS did not proc

    so we have a 1/2, or 50% chance of getting one HP per target hit by DS

    with one target, we have 2 possibilites of a proc

    YN – either it does or it doesn’t

    with two targets, we have 4 possibilites

    YY, YN, NY, NN – so we have a 50% chance to get 1 HP, and 25% chance to get
    combined, against two targets, we have a 75% chance to get at least one HP

    against 3 targets we have 8 possibilities


    so out of the eight, 7 of them have a possibility of getting us at least one HP, or 84.5%
    3 / 8 , or 34.5% have a chance of giving us 2 HP
    1 / 8 , or 12.5% have a chance of giving us 3 HP

    so basically, as the number of targets goes up, the usage of full blown DS’s goes up where as with TV, we get a static “50%” chance of getting HP

    *Its been a long time since stats, but someone correct me if I am wrong anywhere

    **Also, I’m a lazy college student and if you want the actually % chance of procs, just subtract ~20% of the values from above from itself, like 20% of 50 is 10%, so you get 40% chance of actual proc as is now in Beta

    As of right now Crusader Strike has a 4 second CD, and in Cata it is raised to 4.5 seconds, but lowered by haste. In one Blue post, they said the rotation for Ret seemed to need about a 3 second CD, but higher for other specs. So we could see more CS hits, that are harder and generate holy power for more harder hitting DS’s

    I believe the biggest change to our AE DPS will be Seals of Command. It now a talent we get, which modifies Seal of Righteousness and Seal of Truth. On BOTH Seals, each swing now causes 7% additional wep damage, and Seal of Righteousness will allow the Holy damage to splash over.

    Seals of Command currently does ~36% wep damage as holy damage, and the holy damage hits 2 additional targets. In my experience, Seal of Command procs off CS and White damage, which is what gives us our huge AE dps. With Seals of Command changed so much, that could be the bigger change in our AE dps than DS.

    Don’t quote me, but I believe it is possible that against more targets, we may actually have higher DPS, simply because we can get more DS’s off at full HP and it will hit harder because more targets, and with 3 HP have 40% more wep damage added

    I know this is an older Beta Build, but it does explain how HP works pretty well, and how DS could keep us up in AE dps

  27. Psychosaiyan says:

    when it says on Seal of Righteousness splash over, I meant to two targets and I know its a long post, but I had to throw in my two bits to see how much you guys would rip up my post 😉

  28. Khor says:

    Psycho, excellent info m8! Thanks for posting. I’m hashing over your numbers right now, especially on the AoE stuff. With Divine Storm’s damage more powerful since they reversed the previous nerf, I believe we still may be have high DPS AoE. That’s IF we don’t run into mana issues with Consecrate.

  29. Psychosaiyan says:

    Oh oops i just realized i made an error on my post on the YN’s section. some are a bit off, but the math is still good. It is essentially a binary counting system so that looks something like this:

    ———-Above here is chance with 1 Target
    ———-Above here is chance with 2 Targets (including 1)
    ———-Above here is chance with 3 Targets (including 2,1)
    ———-Above here is chance with 4 Targets (including 3,2,1)

    you can continue on your own 🙂

    That is at a 50% chance rate, but lower the value you get by 20% ( 20% of 50 is 10 so 50% proc is lowered to 40%)

    The Formula for the different proc rates is this: assume “n” is the number of targets

    One Holy Power Chance

    [2^(n) – 1]
    ——– x 0.8 when n > 1

    Two Holy Power Chance

    {[2^(n)] – [2^(n-1)] – 1}
    ——————- x 0.8 when n > 2

    Three Holy Power Chance

    {[2^(n)] – [2^(n-1)] – [2(n-2)] – 1 }
    ————————— x 0.8 when n > 3

    hope this helps Khor, and got to give a shout out for this awesome sight! I started my ret back in April and have loved it ever since! I had been looking for a site like this forever and stumbled across this one a couple of weeks ago and it has really helped me out 🙂

  30. Joe says:

    This Holy Power is racking my brain is a proc thing or what if someone has anything please post The question is how do we get holy power in Cata Thanks

  31. Psychosaiyan says:

    This video explains it all

  32. roflpaly says:

    Cool! no more faceroling “i hope” by palis 😀 but…. how will noobs play on paly if they don`t know how to spent the holy powa??? just joking i think i`l continue to play with my paly soon! TY m8 for this 🙂

  33. Joe says:

    Dude i bet the rotation will be BA and when noobs try to play them they will fail and go to a hunter 🙂

  34. Joe says:

    Riddle me this one i just watched a clip on youtube where this pally was able to keep hitting this target dummy and his manna kept coming back in large amounts and he was doing killer dps what the crap? and this was a beta clip and and his holy power had three stages and was able to use TV and DS in like a series where he didnt lose holy power really if anything if they keep ret like that like in the beta us doing some homework we will be right back where we were in WOTLK OP!! so people say we are getting nerfed AHAHAHAHA Right!

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