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A primer on the WoW Paladin community

Chris Chester

The internal dynamics of a class in a given game are usually quite impenetrable to outsiders. People with only a cursory knowledge of a given game, or people who are working through the game for the first time, often see these dynamics as mysterious and unpredictable. Even veteran players often have little idea what is going on within a class they've interacted with for months. Among these enigmatic groups is World of Warcraft's Paladin class. Blessing of Kings' Rohan gives us a brief primer of the Paladin community, ostensibly to promote a greater understanding of a class that seems to want to have it all.

At the crux of the conflict, according to Rohan, is that the Paladin community is split into three camps according to the roles they want to fulfill. Holy paladins want a greater variety of healing abilities to supplement their role as primary healer in most raids, Retribution paladins want greater DPS and increased raid viability, and Protection/Hybrid paladins are generally supportive of any kind of buff, provided it doesn't result in heavy specialization into either the Holy or Retribution archetypes. The result? No matter what changes are made, whether in healing, DPS, or utility, the community as a whole doesn't sound happy. That's not uncommon in a game as big as WoW, but it's particularly pronounced for Paladins.

The one point on which the Paladin community is likely to come to a consensus though, is that they would all look really spiffy in a brand new murloc suit.

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