Retribution Paladin Guide for Patch 7.2

Welcome to our quick start guide for your Retribution Paladin in Patch 7.2. Here we’re going to be covering the basic, need-to-know information for how to play your Paladin effectively. This guide covers just the facts. While extensive testing and simulation time backs our data up, it’s all been omitted to keep this guide as simple as possible. If you’re new to Retribution, if you’re coming back from a break, or you just want to get up to speed for Patch 7.2, this is the guide for you.

If you’d like to dig into the nuts and bolts of Retribution in Patch 7.2, you may want to check out our advanced guides (coming soon).

What’s New in Patch 7.2?

  • New artifact traits. A fourth rank of traits opens up after you invest 35 points into your Ashbringer, along with some new ones.
  • Legendary improvements. Several previously weak legendary items are being buffed.
  • Minor talent changes. Judgment of Light now stacks with multiple Paladins, and no longer has a 1 second cooldown on procs.

What Talents Should I Choose?

These talent choices will produce the best DPS in raids. Talents not listed here are generally not worth considering in Patch 7.2.

Level 15: Final Verdict
Level 30: The Fires of Justice (1 target) or Zeal (2 or more targets)
Level 45: Situational utility talent. Doesn’t affect your DPS.
Level 60: Blade of Wrath (1 target) or Divine Hammer (2 or more targets)
Level 75: Situational utility talent. Doesn’t affect your DPS.
Level 90: Situational utility talent. Doesn’t affect your DPS.
Level 100: Crusade

What is Retribution’s DPS Rotation?

Retribution’s basic rotation is very simple: build Holy Power, cast Judgment, spend Holy Power while the Judgment debuff is up. If you want to maximize your DPS, you need to keep in mind these simple rules:

    1. Build Holy Power using Blade of Justice and Crusader Strike (or their talent replacements).
      • Never use a Holy Power generator if you are at 5 Holy Power. It’s better to spend it immediately.
    2. Use Judgment if the following are true:
      • You have at least 3 Holy Power.
      • At least one charge of Crusader Strike is on cooldown.
    3. Use Templar’s Verdict (1 target) or Divine Storm (2 or more targets) to spend Holy Power.
    4. Continue building and spending Holy Power until the Judgment debuff falls off.

You should use Crusade as often as possible, right after casting Judgment. You should try to use Crusade at the same time that your raid uses Heroism or Bloodlust, but don’t delay using it so long that you lose out on a cooldown throughout the fight.

You should use Wake of Ashes on cooldown, when you have less than 2 Holy Power in reserve. You should never need to delay Wake of Ashes by more than a second or two.

What Order Should I Buy Artifact Traits In?

The following artifact progression path will provide the best DPS increase for your point investment.

Ashbringer Artifact Progression

You’ll end up purchasing traits in this order:

  1. Wake of Ashes
  2. Blade of Light
  3. Deliver the Justice
  4. Sharpened Edge
  5. Wrath of the Ashbringer
  6. Highlord’s Judgment
  7. Endless Resolve
  8. Might of the Templar
  9. Ashes to Ashes
  10. Deflection
  11. Echo of the Highlord
  12. Embrace the Light
  13. Divine Tempest
  14. Righteous Blade
  15. Unbreakable Will, Protector of the Ashen Blade, and Healing Storm (in any order)
  16. Ashbringer’s Light

For a more detailed breakdown of artifact traits and progression paths, check out our Artifact and Relic Guide for Patch 7.2.

What Order Should I Buy the New Patch 7.2 Artifact Traits In?

Patch 7.2 released a group of five new artifact traits, and adds fourth ranks to the old traits that only had three. This is the best order to buy them in.

Ashbringer Artifact Progression - New Patch 7.2 Traits

  1. Ferocity of the Silver Hand
  2. Righteous Verdict
  3. Blessing of the Ashbringer
  4. Judge Unworthy
  5. Wrath of the Ashbringer
  6. Deliver the Justice
  7. Might of the Templar and Righteous Blade (in any order)
  8. Sharpened Edge and Highlord’s Judgment (in any order)
  9. Deflection
  10. Protector of the Ashen Blade and Embrace the Light (in any order)
  11. Concordance of the Legionfall

For a more detailed breakdown of artifact traits and progression paths, check out our Artifact and Relic Guide for Patch 7.2.

What Are the Best Stats for Retribution in Patch 7.2?

You will want to prioritize stats in this order:

  1. Haste
  2. Critical Strike or Versatility
  3. Mastery

Keep in mind that all of Retribution’s secondary stats are very close in value. Increasing your item level in a slot is almost always an upgrade regardless of the item’s stats.

For a more detailed stats breakdown, including a Nighthold “Best in Slot” list, check out the Equipment Guide for Patch 7.2.

What Are the Best Legendary Items for Retribution Paladins?

If possible, you should choose from any combination of these legendary armor pieces:

Chain of Thrayn
Whisper of the Nathrezim
Liadrin’s Fury Unleashed
Ashes to Dust

Other legendary items don’t provide as significant of a DPS increase, but are still always better than any regular armor piece in the same slot.

What Are the Best Trinkets for Retribution Paladins?

The top 10 single target trinkets for Retribution—excluding any Warforged items—are:

  1. Eye of Command
  2. Convergence of Fates
  3. Horn of Valor
  4. Faulty Countermeasure
  5. Entwined Elemental Foci
  6. Memento of Angerboda
  7. Fel-Oiled Infernal Machine
  8. Unstable Arcanocrystal
  9. Chrono Shard
  10. Nightmare Egg Shell

On multiple targets, Claw of the Crystalline Scorpid tops the charts, while Faulty Countermeasure no longer ranks. The list is otherwise identical.

For an overview of trinkets at the item levels they drop at, check out our Retribution Trinket Guide for Patch 7.2.

For a more detailed analysis of trinkets, including Titanforged versions, and interactions with legendary armor, you will want to check out our Retribution Trinket Advanced Guide for Patch 7.2.

What Are the Best Artifact Relics for Retribution Paladins?

This is list of all relevant relics, ranked from best to worst DPS. Relics not listed here should be avoided unless they are significantly higher item level.

Wrath of the Ashbringer ★★★★★
Righteous Blade ★★★★☆ (two or more targets only)
Deliver the Justice ★★☆☆☆
Righteous Verdict ★★☆☆☆
Might of the Templar ★★☆☆☆ (single target only)
Sharpened Edge ★☆☆☆☆
Highlord’s Judgment ★☆☆☆☆
Deflection ★☆☆☆☆

For a more detailed breakdown of artifact relics, including DPS deltas and relative item level values, check out our Artifact and Relic Guide for Patch 7.2.

What Enchants and Gems Should I Choose?

You should always use these enchants:

Enchant Neck – Mark of the Hidden Satyr
Enchant Cloak – Binding of Strength
Enchant Ring – Binding of Haste

If you have any socketed items, your first gem should be a Saber’s Eye of Strength, and all other gems should be Quick Dawnlight.

What Consumables Should I Use?

Your flask should always be a Flask of the Countless Armies (or a Spirit Flask, if your raid provides a Spirit Cauldron).

If your raid provides it, you should eat Lavish Suramar Feast or Hearty Feast—both are better than any available personal food. Otherwise, you should eat Azshari Salad. If you are strapped for cash, Suramar Surf and Turf offers 75 less haste but costs a lot less gold. Don’t bother downgrading your food as far as Deep-Fried Mossgill—you won’t save very much money here.

You should use Potion of the Old War on boss fights. Potion of Prolonged Power are almost always a worse choice, but are much less expensive and better than not using any potions.

If you can afford it, you should use a Defiled Augment Rune.

I’m Making a New Paladin. What Race Should I Choose?

Choose the race that you think looks the best. Human and Blood Elf are the highest DPS choices for the Alliance and Horde, but it’s a very tiny difference.

Update Info

Guide Last Updated: March 28, 2017
Simulationcraft Version: simc-715-02-win64 git build 9b6da33