Threat Generation

Differences between Rage and Mana threat generation

Q u o t e:
The Paladin uses mana where the other tanks use rage. While this originally prevented them from being viable tanks for long fights, mana regen from healing received (via Spiritual Attunement) makes this no longer an issue. Tanking Paladins affectionately refer to their “Blue Rage bar”, as SA replenishes their mana supply constantly. The remaining functional differences are twofold: first, a paladin has a much larger (and scalable) functional resource pool (i.e. 100 rage is worth X seconds of ability use, 4000 mana will be more time of ability use than X), offset by a greater need for efficient spending. Second, they start a fight at full resource, making heavy frontloading possible.

(Credit: Gestalt, Ysera)


“Why is Paladin Threat Generation so powerful?”

Q u o t e:
The Paladin generates threat through Holy spell damage (with threat multipliers). Their overall threat model is more like a Druid than a warrior: high damage with bonus threat for damage dealt. They differ from Druids in that their damage source is unaffected by any mitigation mode in the game. Holy Damage has no resistance value: the spell damage can “miss”, resulting in a full resist, but partial resist or school-specific resists don’t apply. Since the damage is magical, rather than physical, the armor of the mob has no impact on the threat generated by the paladin. While some of the threat is generated from holy damage procs on successful weapon swings, a lot of Paladin threat is coming from reactive procs (i.e. damage when hit) and AoE DoT, so even outright mob avoidance has only a moderate effect on threat generation. This spell-based threat mechanic does make the paladin less effective on mobs that silence (see below) and are magic immune (though resistances aren’t a factor).

The Paladin generates threat through multiple sources that are active simultaneously, most of which are fire-and-forget. At any point in a fight a Paladin will probably be building threat from: seals on weapon swings, hits taken, hits blocked (at all times), and bonus damage on hits blocked (when Holy Shield is active). These multiple damage sources all scale with gear and add up FAST. In any multi-mob encounter the Paladins screen will be covered with a constant stream of numbers.

Since much of the damage and threat of the Paladin is passive or non-targeted, there is no real limit to the number of mobs a Paladin can hold. The threat built on non-targeted mobs is substantial: instance non-elites will usually kill themselves from reactive damage long before DPS gets to them on the target list, and elites will still be substantially weakened when DPS gets to them. Paladins rarely require crowd control: the only limit to the number of mobs they can tank is the amount of damage the healers can stay on top of.

(Credit: Gestalt, Ysera)


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