Retribution Paladin playstyle and rotation guide

Patch 10.0.5 Last Updated: 26th Jan, 2023
Nurseos Retribution Paladin Author

Playstyle & Rotation

Your gameplay is based on your Holy Power, which you can have from 0 to 5. You have generators and spenders.

Generators are: Crusader Strike, Blade of Justice, Judgment, Hammer of Wrath, Wake of Ashes and Divine Toll;

Before moving to spenders I’d like to focus on Judgment a little more. Judgment isn’t a simple HP generator - it also leaves a debuff on target that empowers next HP spender by 20%.

Spenders are: Templar’s Verdict, Divine Storm, Radiant Decree and Word of Glory

You also have spells like Consecration and Exorcism. Exorcism doesn’t interact with Holy Power at all. Consecration can randomly generate Holy Power with Sanctification talent.

Basic idea is to use generators while you have them and stop doing that after reaching 5 HP.

Spenders should be used if:

Consecration on Single target should be used only when you have literally nothing to use. Starting from 2 targets you should maintain 100% uptime of it if targets stand still.

General Rotation:

Your spell priority should look like this:

  1. Holy Power spender at 5HP (Templar’s Verdict on ST, Radiant Decree > Divine Storm on 2+ targets)
  2. Holy Power spender at 3-4HP, Judgment debuff is on target and your Judgment spell is ready or you're going to apply a new one with Divine Resonance
  3. Holy Power spender at 3-4HP, you have just got the proc of Ashes of Dust and your Judgment is on CD
  4. Hammer of Wrath during Crusade if it has 2 charges (with Vanguard’s Momentum)
  5. Wake of Ashes at 2 or less HP
  6. Judgment if you don't have the debuff from it on target and you have 4 or less HP
  7. Hammer of Wrath if available and you have 4 or less HP
  8. Consecration at 2+ targets if it isn’t up yet and you are not in the middle of Final Reckoning
  9. Blade of Justice and you have 3 or less HP
  10. Exorcism if you have this talent
  11. Crusader Strike if you have 2 charges and you have 4 or less HP
  12. Crusader Strike if you have 1 charge, you are in the Crusade or your Final Reckoning or Execution Sentence is active and you have 4 or less HP
  13. Consecration to give a little break for your HP generators to get of CD
  14. Crusader Strike if you have 1 charge
  15. Consecration if everything else is unavailable

If you are playing Seal of Order you should maintain your Blessing of Dawn and Blessing of Dusk by reaching 5 and 0 Holy power each 20 seconds. Hitting 5 HP isn’t a problem, but sometimes it can be problematic to get 0 due to random Holy Powers from Sanctification and Divine Purpose.

Single Target Opener:

  1. Judgment (you usually start the fight from some range so you won’t be able to hit the target with anything else anyway. Plus you want to apply the Judgment debuff and put the spell on CD to get it back as fast as possible)
  2. If you have Exorcism and you are still not in the melee range. If you are in melee then skip to point 3
  3. Blade of Justice
  4. Crusader Strike
  5. Crusader Strike
  6. Exorcism if point 2 was skipped
  7. CrusadeSeraphim (here you are triggering the Blessing of Dawn)
  8. Wake of Ashes
  9. Templar’s Verdict
  10. Hammer of Wrath 
  11. Templar’s Verdict (here you are triggering the Blessing of Dusk)
  12. Build to 5 Holy Power
  13. Final Reckoning
  14. Templar’s Verdict
  15. Divine Toll
  16. Proceed with normal rotation

Multi Target:

There are a few things that change on multi-target for Retribution:

Multi Target Opener:

  1. Judgment
  2. Blade of Justice
  3. Consecration
  4. Crusader Strike
  5. Crusader Strike
  6. Exorcism if talented
  7. CrusadeSeraphim
  8. Divine Storm
  9. Hammer of Wrath
  10. Divine Storm
  11. Reach 5 Holy power
  12. Consecration
  13. Final Reckoning + on use trinkets or Iron Dwarf Racial
  14. Divine Storm
  15. Use holy power generator whichever you have ready at the moment ( Judgment > HoW > BJ > CS )
  16. Divine Storm
  17. Divine Toll
  18. Radiant Decree
  19. Reach 3 Holy Power
  20. Divine Storm
  21. Proceed with the normal rotation


Major Cooldowns

Avenging Wrath / Crusade

It is a 2 min cooldown that basically you want to use from the start and almost never hold it. Holding any of your bursts may cause you to lose one during the fight, however there are some cases where you want to hold and it will be worth it:

  • Encounters with waves of adds;
  • Encounters with damage amplifiers;

Abilities like Final Reckoning, Execution Sentence and Divine Toll should always be used together. If your Avenging Wrath / Crusade is ready - they all should be lined up.

Delaying Avenging Wrath / Crusade also means that you are going to delay the rest of your CDs.

More tips:

Defensive Cooldowns

Retribution paladin has a lot of defensive abilities that can be applied to friendly targets. But let's start with personals:

  • Divine Shield. This is a total immunity for 8 seconds. It is on GCD, so be careful. This spell causes a Forbearance debuff that won’t allow you to get Blessing of Protection, Spellwarding (from Protection Paladins) or Lay on Hands;
  • Shield of Vengeance. This is a talent from your spec tree and you should choose between it or Divine Protection. This defensive CD can also bring you some dps increase. This is basically an absorb that explodes on the exact amount of damage you’ve absorbed;
  • Divine Protection is a simple damage reduction cooldown for 8 sec. It allows you to decrease incoming damage by 20% for 8 seconds; 
  • Eye for an Eye is a talent from your spec tree. It decreases incoming physical damage by 35% for 10 sec. It also deals a small amount of damage to melee attackers. Mostly usable in PvP against melee setups however it is still a good option for PvE encounters with a lot of physical damage;

Next defensive CD’s can be applied to you allies:

  • Lay on Hands is a talent from the general tree. Simply heal the target for an amount equal to your maximum health. Causes Forbearance. Can be casted on yourself;
  • Blessing of Protection is a talent from the general tree. Makes your target invulnerable to all physical damage for 10 seconds and also removes all physical debuffs from the target. You also should know that while your target is under Blessing of Protection it is also removed from the agro table. Still can use taunt under this effect, however when the effect of it fades the enemy is going to ignore this target. Causes Forbearance. Can be casted on yourself;
  • Blessing of Sacrifice is a talent from the general tree. This is a damage reduction ability that can be used only on your allies but not on yourself. You are reducing the damage taken by chosen ally by 30%, however you are going to get all this prevented damage. It is a good idea to pair Blessing of Sacrifice with Shield of Vengeance to not die of Blessing of Sacrifice damage or just to proc faster the explosion of it. If you are going to save an ally from a very powerful ability it can be worth to pair it up even with Divine Shield.