Retribution Paladin DPS Spec, Builds, and Talents — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1
On this page, you will find out the best talents for each tier for your Retribution Paladin in World of Warcraft — Battle for Azeroth (BfA) 8.1. We also have default talent lists for various types of content, such as raiding or Mythic+. If you play with Warmode on, we have your PvP talents covered as well.
1. Talent Choices for Retribution Paladin
|15||✓ Zeal||✓ Righteous Verdict||✗ Execution Sentence|
|30||✓ Fires of Justice||✓ Blade of Wrath||✓ Hammer of Wrath|
|45||✓ Fist of Justice||? Repentance||✓ Blinding Light|
|60||✗ Divine Judgment||✓ Consecration||✓ Wake of Ashes|
|75||✓ Unbreakable Spirit||✓ Cavalier||✓ Eye for an Eye|
|90||✓ Selfless Healer||✗ Justicar's Vengeance||✓ Word of Glory|
|100||✓ Divine Purpose||✓ Crusade||✓ Inquisition|
Talents can be freely changed when out of combat and in a rested XP area (such as an inn or a capital city). Moreover, Tome of the Tranquil Mind and Codex of the Tranquil Mind can be used to temporarily allow players to change talents anywhere, as long as they are out of combat.
2. Tier 1 (Level 15) Talents for Retribution Paladins
|✔ Zeal||✔ Righteous Verdict||✘ Execution Sentence|
- Zeal causes your Judgment to buff your next 3 auto attacks, causing them to occur 30% faster and deal additional Holy damage. The Zeal buff lasts 20 seconds and can store up to 9 buffed auto attacks.
- Righteous Verdict increases Templar's Verdict's damage by 15% for 6 seconds after casting Templar's Verdict.
- Execution Sentence is an active ability with a 30-second cooldown, 20-yard range, and which costs 3 Holy Power. It deals a moderate amount of Holy damage and causes the target to take 20% increased Holy damage for 12 seconds.
Zeal currently is the best choice for dungeons and AoE in general, when facing 2 or more enemies.
3. Tier 2 (Level 30) Talents for Retribution Paladins
|✔ Fires of Justice||✔ Blade of Wrath||✔ Hammer of Wrath|
- Fires of Justice reduces the cooldown of Crusader Strike by 15% and gives it a 15% chance to reduce the cost of your next Holy Power spender by 1.
- Blade of Wrath doubles the proc rate of Art of War to 4 RPPM and increases its damage by 25%.
- Hammer of Wrath is an active ability with a 7.5-second cooldown (reduced by Haste) with a 30-yard range. It deals a moderate amount of Holy damage and generates 1 Holy Power. It is only usable on enemies that have less than 20% Health or during Avenging Wrath and Crusade.
All three talents in this row are viable in all situations, the choice is up to you.
Hammer of Wrath is currently the recommended choice in this tier, because the damage is shifted towards your burst and execute phases, which is generally preferred. It excels at encounters where the boss takes additional damage at low Health. Additionally, you can build extra Holy Power from casting Hammer of Wrath on adds that are up to 30 yards away while they have less than 20% Health.
Blade of Wrath and Fires of Justice are the choices in this tier if you prefer a damage gain during, as well as outside of Avenging Wrath. You have to simulate which of both currently does more damage for yourself.
4. Tier 3 (Level 45) Talents for Retribution Paladins
|✔ Fist of Justice||? Repentance||✔ Blinding Light|
- Fist of Justice causes each Holy Power spent to reduce the remaining cooldown of Hammer of Justice by 2 seconds.
- Repentance is an active ability with an 15-second cooldown. It is a form of crowd-control that incapacitates the target for up to 1 minute. Damage done will break the effect. Repentance can only be used against Humanoids, Demons, Undead, Dragonkin, and Giants.
- Blinding Light is an active ability with an 90-second cooldown. It disorients all enemies within a 10-yard radius around you for 6 seconds. Non-holy damage done to them will break the disorient effect.
The talents in this tier are situational and have no effect on your DPS. In raids, you should choose based on your preference or the requirements of the encounter, although we recommend Blinding Light as a reasonable default pick, as its AoE disorient is versatile. For dungeons, we recommend Fist of Justice as default pick.
5. Tier 4 (Level 60) Talents for Retribution Paladins
|✘ Divine Judgment||✔ Consecration||✔ Wake of Ashes|
- Divine Judgment builds one stack per enemy hit by your Holy Power spenders, stacking up to 15 times. Each stack increases the damage of your next Judgment by 20%.
- Consecration is an active ability with a 20-second cooldown. You consecrate the land beneath you within 8 yards, dealing a moderate amount of Holy damage over 6 seconds to enemies who enter the area. It generates 1 Holy Power.
- Wake of Ashes is an active ability with a 45-second cooldown. It does a massive amount of Radiant damage to all enemies in a frontal cone within 12 yards and reduces their movement speed by 50%. Demons and Undead are also stunned for 5 seconds. It generates 5 Holy Power.
Wake of Ashes currently is the recommended choice for this tier.
Consecration is a viable alternative choice if you require AoE damage on shorter cooldown for more consistent AoE damage over multiple add spawns or packs. This does not apply if the enemies constantly move away from your consecrated zone.
6. Tier 5 (Level 75) Talents for Retribution Paladins
|✔ Unbreakable Spirit||✔ Cavalier||✔ Eye for an Eye|
- Cavalier causes your Divine Steed to have 2 charges.
- Unbreakable Spirit passively reduces the cooldown of your Divine Shield, Shield of Vengeance, and Lay on Hands by 30%.
- Eye for an Eye is an active ability with a 1-minute cooldown. It lasts 10 seconds, during which time it reduces the Physical damage you take by 35% and causes you to instantly counterattack any enemy that strikes you with a melee attack (dealing Physical damage to them).
In raids, we recommend Unbreakable Spirit as the default choice, mainly allowing you to use Shield of Vengeance more frequently, which slightly increases your damage dealt. You can switch to Eye for an Eye for Physical damage heavy encounters. Lastly, if you absolutely need additional mobility, you use Cavalier.
7. Tier 6 (Level 90) Talents for Retribution Paladins
|✔ Selfless Healer||✘ Justicar's Vengeance||✔ Word of Glory|
- Selfless Healer causes Holy Power spenders to reduce the cast time of your next Flash of Light by 25% and increase its healing done by 10%. It stacks up to 4 times.
- Justicar's Vengeance is an active ability that has no cooldown but costs 5 Holy Power. It deals a moderate amount of Holy damage to the target, healing you equal to the damage dealt. Against stunned targets, the damage and healing are increased by 50%.
- Word of Glory is an active ability with 2 charges and a 1-minute recharge time. It heals a friendly target in 40 yards range and the 2 most injured friendly targets within 30 yards.
For dungeons, we recommend Word of Glory.
8. Tier 7 (Level 100) Talents for Retribution Paladins
|✔ Divine Purpose||✔ Crusade||✔ Inquisition|
- Divine Purpose causes your Holy Power spenders to have a 15% chance to make your next Holy Power spender free and deal 20% increased damage and healing.
- Crusade replaces Avenging Wrath. It increases your damage and Haste by 3% for 25 seconds and each Holy Power spent during Crusade increases your damage and Haste by an additional 3%, up to a maximum of 10 stacks (so a 30% increase to both damage and Haste).
- Inquisition is an active ability that has no cooldown but costs 1-3 Holy Power. It is a buff that increases your damage and Haste by 7%. The buff lasts 15 seconds per Holy Power spend.
In this tier, you have to choose between Crusade, Divine Purpose, and Inquisition. All three are viable in most situations and their value can vary for each individual character. You have to simulate to find the correct choice for your own character.
Crusade is the cooldown-dependant burst-heavy choice. Inquisition is the consistent alternative choice, but one that requires maintenance. Inquisition is a good choice for single-target situations. Divine Purpose is the passive alternative choice with a random nature. Divine Purpose is a great choice for constant AoE situations.
9. PvP Talents (War Mode)
In Battle for Azeroth, there will be the option to go into "War Mode". Enabling War Mode provides the following benefits:
- PvP talents enabled in the outdoor world.
- 10% increase in World Quest rewards at maximum level.
- 10% more experience gained while leveling.
- Earn Conquest Points which can reward gear every week.
With the benefits of enabling War Mode for leveling and PvE content, it is recommended to enable the feature to maximize your leveling and rewards at maximum level. However, you will make yourself available for open world PvP, and the possibility to be "ganked" while leveling or doing World Quests exists.
9.1. Retribution Paladin War Mode Talents
In this section we will rank the PvP talents best for leveling and doing solo / small group PvE content. Below is a ranking of both General PvP Talents and Retribution Paladin-specific PvE talents.
9.1.1. General PvP Talents
- Adaptation is likely your most passive choice, since it will automatically remove loss of control effects over 5 seconds. It is recommended for leveling to take this PvP talent.
- Relentless is a passive ability, but it does not automatically remove crowd control abilities, but instead reduces the duration.
- Gladiator's Medallion is an on-use ability that removes all movement impairing effects and all loss of control effects.
9.1.2. Retribution Paladin PvP Talents
- Hammer of Reckoning is an active ability with 30 yards range and a 48-second cooldown. When you or allies with your Greater Blessings take damage, your gain Reckoning. Consume 50 stacks of Reckoning to deal a massive amount of Holy damage and gain Avenging Wrath for 6 seconds.
- Divine Punisher causes two consecutive Judgments on the same enemy to generate 3 additional Holy Power.
- Lawbringer causes your Judgment to apply Lawbringer to initial targets hit for 45 seconds. Casting Judgment causes all enemies with your Lawbringer effect to suffer up to 5% of their maximum Health in Holy damage.
Luminescence, Blessing of Sanctuary, Seraphim's Blessing, Vengeance Aura, Ultimate Retribution, and Law and Order have limited use for PvE content in terms of increasing your damage in the open world in a small group setting. For the purpose of leveling and World Quests in Battle for Azeroth, the choices above are better options.
- 10 Dec. 2018: Updated for 8.1.
- 05 Sep. 2018: Updated tier 1, 2, 4, and 5 talent sections slightly.
- 13 Aug. 2018: Updated for Battle for Azeroth launch.
- 25 Jul. 2018: Fixed Divine Punisher description.
- 25 Jul. 2018: Removed Blade of Wrath note.
- 21 Jul. 2018: Removed Divine Storm at 2 targets recommendation with Divine Judgment.
- 17 Jul. 2018: Updated for the Battle for Azeroth pre-patch.
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