Holy Paladin Healing Rotation, Cooldowns, and Abilities — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1
On this page, you will learn how to optimize the rotation of your Holy Paladin, depending on the type of damage your group is receiving. We also have advanced sections about cooldowns, procs, etc. in order to minmax your healing output and your mana efficiency. All our content is updated for World of Warcraft — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1.
1. Rotation / Playstyle for Holy Paladins
Healing as a Holy Paladin is, for the most part, all about using the correct spells for the specific circumstances in which you find yourself, particularly with regard to how many raid members are taking damage, how much damage they are taking, where they are located, and what spells you have available.
1.1. Single Target / Tank Healing
Healing a single target is a matter of performing a few straightforward tasks.
- Always keep Beacon of Light on the target.
- Use Holy Shock on them on cooldown.
- Use Bestow Faith on them on cooldown.
- Use Holy Light for low damage, and add Flash of Light for higher damage as needed and as your Mana permits.
Naturally, if the target is not taking enough damage to justify using all of the above on them, you should instead use the spells to heal other raid members as needed.
In case you are forced to move and Holy Shock is on cooldown, you can also make use of Light of the Martyr to heal your target if they are at risk of dying (as long as it does not put you at risk to do so).
1.2. Raid Healing for Holy Paladins
To heal raid damage, make use of your spells as follows.
- Keep Beacon of Light on the tank or on another target who is taking constant damage.
- Use Holy Shock on cooldown.
- Make sure to use Judgment on the target on cooldown, to keep maximum uptime on Judgment of Light if you have selected this talent.
- Use Light of Dawn on cooldown, assuming the raid is sufficiently damaged to justify it.
- Use Holy Prism on cooldown, assuming the raid is sufficiently damaged to justify it, if you have selected this talent.
- Use Holy Light if the damage is low enough, or Flash of Light otherwise, as long as you have the Mana to do so.
As in the case of single target healing, if you are forced to move and Holy Shock is on cooldown, you can also make use of Light of the Martyr to heal a target, but we do not recommend using this spell otherwise.
1.3. 5-Man Healing
5-man healing is very similar to single target healing, with the exception that you will sometimes find uses for Light of Dawn, and that if you have the Beacon of Virtue talent, you should use it when multiple party members are taking damage.
1.4. A Word on Light of the Martyr
Light of the Martyr is an instant cast spell that heals your target and damages you for 50% of the healing amount. It cannot be cast on yourself and it does not trigger healing on your Beacon of Light target.
Due to the damage it causes to yourself, and the fact it does not transfer healing to beacons, its net total healing is quite poor. But because of the large up-front heal to the target, it can be a potent life-saving tool. This is why we do not recommend using Light of the Martyr outside of the specific situations mentioned above and absolutely never if there is a risk your low health or incoming mechanics may cause you to die from the additional damage the spell inflicts on you.
2. Cooldown Usage for Holy Paladins
As a Holy Paladin, you have several healing cooldowns. You should use them as we explain below:
- Avenging Wrath increases your healing done and Critical Strike chance by 30% for 20. It is very useful during periods of high sustained damage.
- Lay on Hands should be used to save dying raid members, especially tanks.
- Blessing of Sacrifice lasts 12 seconds, transferring 30% of the damage taken by your target to you. The effect is automatically canceled if the transferred damage would cause you to fall below 20% health. This cooldown is excellent for reducing the damage taken by the tank, or other raid members. Be cautious, however, because Blessing of Sacrifice can be dangerous to your own life if used without a damage reduction cooldown such as Divine Protection or Divine Shield, or when simultaneous raid damage independently threatens your life such that the additional damage taken from Blessing of Sacrifice can lead to your death.
- Aura Mastery empowers your chosen aura, increasing its range to 40 yards and also improving its efficiency. It is a raid cooldown, and it should be used at a time designated by your healing officer or raid leader.
- Blessing of Protection can be used to clear harmful physical damage debuffs and bleeds from the target. Be mindful of the fact that bosses will not attack targets affected by Blessing of Protection, though, so only cast it on the current tank if the off-tank is prepared to take over.
- Blessing of Freedom removes movement-impairing effects from the targeted raid member, which can be very useful in certain situations.
You also gain various abilities from your talents. We cover these in a later section.
3. Optional Read: Mastering Your Holy Paladin
The above information should be sufficient to allow you to play a Holy Paladin at a very high level. There are only a few more details that you need to understand to further improve your performance.
3.1. Mastery: Lightbringer
Mastery: Lightbringer increases your healing to targets the closer they are to your position. Specifically, your healing is maximised on targets that are within 10 yards of you, and it decreases the farther away they are from then on. In general being with the melee group will maximize your benefit from Mastery and you should be there unless you can identify a specific reason to do otherwise.
3.2. Infusion of Light
3.3. Abilities and Cooldowns from Talents
3.3.1. Tier 1 Talents
Bestow Faith should be used on cooldown, ideally on the tank. You can also use it on another player, provided you can be sure that they will need healing when Bestow Faith expires (for example, if they are affected by some debuff that is damaging them).
You need to make sure to cast Bestow Faith before the player actually needs the healing, since it operates on a delay. This will also help to minimise overhealing done by the ability, since it will be harder for other healers to top off the target before Bestow Faith finishes.
Light's Hammer should be used during AoE raid damage.
3.3.2. Tier 2 Talents
Rule of Law works mainly to boost your healing on targets that are farther away from you than 10 yards, so you should use it when you need to heal such targets. It can also be helpful when you want to heal someone who is out of your maximum range. Note that it also increases the range of Light of Dawn, so using it before a Light of Dawn cast can be a good practice.
3.3.3. Tier 5 Talents
Holy Prism should be cast on the boss, or another enemy target that is near to raid members. This can be especially useful when the boss or an add has an aura that damages nearby players.
Holy Avenger should be treated as a healing cooldown. Simply use it during a time of intense damage.
3.3.4. Tier 6 Talents
Sanctified Wrath increases the duration of your Avenging Wrath, an effect that occurs passively and does not concern you except that your cooldown will last longer. You should also make sure to use Holy Shock on cooldown while Avenging Wrath is active.
Avenging Crusader replaces Avenging Wrath. You should make sure that you are in melee range of a target at all times while Avenging Crusader is active and prioritize casts of Judgment and Crusader Strike while it is active.
3.3.5. Tier 7 Talents
Divine Purpose procs will simply be used passively. You should only make sure to use them up before they expire, so that they are not wasted.
As mentioned earlier, if you select Beacon of Virtue you should use it when multiple party or raid members are taking damage. You should prioritize healing targets that do not have the Beacon of Virtue buff on them if possible.
- 10 Dec. 2018: Reviewed and deemed up to date for Patch 8.1.
- 13 Aug. 2018: Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
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- 8.1.5 PTR Developer Notes: January 23rd
- Patch 8.1 Hotfixes: January 22nd + Clarifications
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