- This article is about the general class description. For related articles, see Category:Paladins. For the Warcraft III hero unit, see Paladin (Warcraft III).
The paladin is a hybrid class with the ability to play all three major roles, including healing, tanking and DPS. They have auras, blessings and seals that provide useful buffs for other players while wearing plate armor to heavily mitigate damage and strong defensive abilities. Paladins are considered holy knights or in the case of blood elves, blood knights. Tauren paladins call themselves Sunwalkers to emphasize their relationship with the sun, specifically An'she.
Paladins are exceptional tanks, excelling at pulling and holding the attention of multiple mobs simultaneously through the use of reactive threat abilities such as Consecration.
The class also has some of the most mana-efficient, low-threat healing spells in the game, allowing a paladin to easily fill the position of a main tank's healer in a party or raid environment. Their healing efficiency makes them great endurance and battle healers, though paladins lack Area of Effect healing abilities. However, with the inclusion of Eternal Flame, they finally have a Heal over time ability.
The paladin has several abilities designed specifically for use against undead and demonic targets, including Exorcism, Holy Wrath and Turn Evil. Note that undead in this case does not include Forsaken players, who are considered Humanoids for reasons of fairness and balance.
In PvP, paladins are infamous for outlasting opponents and being able to adapt to a variety of situations. With plate armor, a shield, the ability to heal themselves and allies, along with a nearly complete invulnerability every few minutes, they are a hard target to take down. Paladins are also capable of doing a surprising amount of burst damage, and stuns and similar abilities provide plenty of utility. Paladins make great support characters, buffing and healing teammates while being able to survive the enemy's attention and contribute a respectable, if not exceptional, amount of damage, depending on the spec (and patch, like everything else).
However, these "Warriors of the Light" are not indestructible, and are particularly vulnerable to silence and interrupt effects, due to the class's reliance on a single school of magic (Holy). This also means dispel effects are powerful deterrents.
While paladins have strong advantages, mastery of the class is also an arduous exercise in multitasking and attention to detail. Thanks to their hybrid role, inexperienced players may find them hard to balance as a whole.
The paladin is a "warrior of the Holy Light". They uphold all that is good and true in the world and revile all that is evil and sinister, especially undead and the Burning Legion. They offer succor to the beleaguered and smite their enemies with holy fervor. They are particularly potent against undead, as these creatures threaten the goodly races and the Holy Light burns them terribly. The presence of any evil is reprehensible to paladins, but they focus their efforts on destroying undead and demons.
These warriors uphold the tenets of the Holy Light and defend their factions from the predations of any threat. Found in almost every corner of Azeroth fighting the forces of evil and barbarism, these stalwart warriors of faith ceaselessly uphold their vigil against demonic forces from beyond the Dark Portal. Paladins are the embodiment of good and selfless dedication to the protection of their peoples. They help the innocent and punish the wicked. As such, paladins are generally of good alignment.
During the Second War, some paladins' eyes glowed with inner power of the Light, such as the paladin Turalyon. This is not the case for all paladins, though it occurs in-game with certain paladin armor sets.Template:Fac
The paladin’s code requires that they respect legitimate authority, act with honor, help those in need, and punish those who harm or threaten innocents. While they may adventure with others from different organizations, they will never knowingly associate with evil persons, nor continue an association with someone who consistently offends their moral code. Paladins may accept only henchmen, followers, or cohorts whose intentions are good. What they deem "moral" may vary, however. As long as a paladin believes in her/himself and that their endgoal is just - one remains a paladin.
Paladins don't always have to work within good or neutral organizations, as seen by the Scarlet Crusade and others; however, they do have to believe they are working for good organizations or have faith that their cause is good and just. Paladins can be evil (as illustrated by Renault Mograine and Arthas, before he took up Frostmourne), but as long as they believe their cause to be just, the Light will continue to serve them. 
perceived that the pious Clerics of Northshire, who suffered such terrible attrition in the First War, were ill-suited for the dangers of combat. Along with many of the surviving Clerics of Northshire, he sought those of only the greatest virtue among the knighthood of Lordaeron and tutored them in the ways of magic. Led by , it rested upon these paladins — christened the Knights of the Silver Hand — to heal the wounds sustained in combat and to restore faith in the promise of freedom from orcish tyranny.
The holy paladins led the battle against the orcs and helped save the lands of Lordaeron from ruin. Though 15 years had passed since the end of the Second War, the paladins worked selflessly to protect humanity from the gnawing jaws of evil. Empowered by the Light, these mighty warriors brandished both their warhammers and holy fire in the battle against all those who would trample the weak and innocent.
The Knights of the Silver Hand was at its height until the time of the Plague. As paladins were immune to the Plague, many members of the Order survived the initial push of the Scourge. The Order of the Silver Hand was disbanded by prince Arthas Menethil when Uther refused to aid in the purging of Stratholme. Later, after Arthas was seduced by the power of the Lich King, he killed many paladins upon his return from Northrend, including Uther, leaving only a scattered few.
Following the invasion of the Scourge, many of the order's paladins joined a zealous group of followers of the Light known as the Scarlet Crusade. These paladins became fanatical in their ambition to destroy the Scourge, to the point that those not wearing their colors are deemed corrupted. Others decided to join the Argent Dawn. Some paladins also turned from the Light and joined Arthas Menethil as death knights.
Others fled south to the Kingdom of Stormwind. The paladin order, still referring to themselves as the Order of the Silver Hand, thrived under new leadership at the Cathedral of Light in Stormwind City. Over time, followers of the Holy Light spread their philosophy to the dwarves of Ironforge, who soon adopted the tenets of the order as well. Though decimated, the Knights of the Silver Hand eventually began to recover.
In a World of Warcraft questline, vows to restore the original order, which later merges with the Argent Dawn to form the Argent Crusade.
- Main article: Paladin races
The paladin class can be played by the following races:
Blood elf paladins belong to the Order of Blood Knights, while human and dwarven paladins are usually from the Knights of the Silver Hand. Currently, draenei paladins are members of an organization called the Hand of Argus. Draenei paladins receive an elekk similar to how tauren receive a modified kodo.Thunder Bluff, named Aponi Brightmane. She has a conversation with Tahu Sagewind about drawing powers from the sun as the druids can draw power from the moon.
- Stat priority
- Critical Strike
|Beacon of Light||20|
|Crusader Strike (2)||26|
|Infusion of Light||35|
|Light of Dawn||40|
|Judgment (ability) (3)||42|
|Light of the Martyr||50|
|Beacon of Light (2)||52|
|Blessing of Sacrifice||56|
- Stat priority
- Critical Strike
|Hammer of the Righteous||10|
|Shield of the Righteous||20|
|Light of the Protector||40|
|Avenger's Shield (2)||42|
|Judgment (ability) (3)||42|
|Blessing of Sacrifice||56|
|Guardian of Ancient Kings||70|
|Mastery: Divine Bulwark||78|
- Stat priority
- Haste (30%)
- Critical Strike / Versatility
|Judgment (ability) (2)||16|
|Blade of Justice||20|
|Hand of Hindrance||24|
|Shield of Vengeance||32|
|Greater Blessing of Kings||58|
|Greater Blessing of Wisdom||65|
|Mastery: Divine Judgment||78|
- Note: Players technically start in Retribution spec; if a player chooses another specialization at level 10, Protection paladins lose Crusader Strike.
|Crusader Strike||Starts with|
|Flash of Light||5|
|Hammer of Justice||8|
|Hand of Reckoning||12|
|Blessing of Freedom||38|
|Heart of the Crusader||44|
|Blessing of Protection||48|
|Lay on Hands||55|
Note: Level 20 mounts require Apprentice Riding (75) (given automatically at level 20) and level 40 require Journeyman (150) (need to train) before trainers will offer them.
|Summon Exarch's Elekk||20||Draenei|
|Summon Sunwalker Kodo||20||Tauren|
|Summon Thalassian Warhorse||20||Blood elf|
|Summon Warhorse||20|| Dwarf|
|Summon Charger||40|| Dwarf|
|Summon Great Exarch's Elekk||40||Draenei|
|Summon Great Sunwalker Kodo||40||Tauren|
|Summon Thalassian Charger||40||Blood elf|
|Level||Abilities (choose one)|
|15|| Bestow Faith
| Light's Hammer (paladin talent)
Blessed Hammer (paladin talent)
| Crusader's Might|
The Fires of Justice
| Unbreakable Spirit
Bastion of Light (paladin talent)
| Rule of Law|
|45||Fist of Justice||Repentance||Blinding Light|
|60|| Devotion Aura
Blessing of Spellwarding
| Aura of Sacrifice
Blade of Wrath
| Aura of Mercy|
Divine Hammer (paladin talent)
|75|| Divine Purpose
Hand of the Protector
| Holy Avenger
Eye for an Eye
| Holy Prism|
Word of Glory
|90|| Fervent Martyr
Aegis of Light
| Sanctified Wrath
Judgment of Light
| Judgment of Light|
Seal of Light
|100|| Beacon of Faith
| Beacon of the Lightbringer
| Beacon of Virtue|
|Glyph of Fire From the Heavens||All|
|Glyph of Pillar of Light||All|
|Glyph of the Luminous Charger||All|
|Glyph of the Queen||Protection|
|Glyph of Winged Vengeance||All|
|2||Defender of the Weak, Relentless Assault, Hardiness (honor talent)|
|4||Divine Vision, Shield of Virtue, Jurisdiction|
|8||Avenging Light, Hallowed Ground, Vengeance Aura|
|10||Spreading the Word, Judgments of the Pure, Lawbringer (honor talent)|
|13||Adaptation (honor talent)|
|16||Vim and Vigor, Inquisition, Reinforced Armor|
|22||Pure of Heart|
|25||Ultimate Sacrifice, Guarded by the Light, Blessing of Sanctuary|
|28||Blessed Hands, Steed of Glory, Divine Punisher|
|31||Relentless (honor talent)|
|34||Divine Favor, Softened Blows, Sparring (honor talent)|
|37||Cleanse the Weak, Warrior of Light, Law and Order|
|40||Light's Grace, Luminescence|
|43||Darkest before the Dawn, Sacred Duty, Seraphim's Blessing|
|46||Avenging Crusader, Guardian of the Forgotten Queen, Hammer of Reckoning|
- The paladin's ability to wear plate, use shields, and wield almost all types of melee weapons makes a good choice if is chosen as a gathering profession. Paladins will be able to produce highly sought-after shield and weapon enhancements such as weight/sharpening stones, shield spikes, and weapon chains that counter disarm effects.
- offers some higher level paladin-friendly benefits once the player can use socketed gems. Draenei paladins have +10 racial bonus, .
- provides a means to produce class-specific glyphs that give enhancements to existing abilities and traits. Buff scrolls that boost existing stats can be of use. Other Glyphs can be sold at Auction or given to other players as gifts.
- offers a wide variety of potions and elixirs that boost health and mana and provide additional temporary traits and bonuses to existing stats. It is a profession useful to any class and can easily be combined with a tauren paladin's Herbalism bonus.
- is recommended as a fair backup healing plan for yourself when mana (or Holy Power) needs to be saved for others, if you intend your paladin to be a healer-type. It is useful to any class and easy to learn.
- allows you to learn recipes that give you short-term stamina bonuses, which is always useful to any class.
Paladins are one of the few classes that can perform any of the three major functions required in group or raid play, depending on their specialization.
- Main article: Paladins as tanks
Through the protection specialization paladins gain an increased ability to tank enemies. Paladins are especially well-known for their ability to tank many enemies at once with rapid threat production. Paladin tanking was once largely reliant on reflective damage, but can now effectively generate multi-target threat. Strong stamina scaling and simple and very high threat generation make paladins perhaps the best tanks in the game.
- Main article: Paladins as DPS
Through the retribution specialization paladins are able to significantly increase their damage output while also bringing a large amount of unique raid utility.
- Main article: Paladins as healers
Through the holy specialization paladins are able to empower their healing even further. The holy specialization's most important talent, Beacon of Light, allows a paladin's direct heals to be mirrored to the affected friendly target. Holy Paladins are widely regarded as the strongest tank healers in the game due to the high output of Holy Light in combination with Beacon of Light.
- In-game paladin is often abbreviated into pala, pal, or pally by players.
- Paladin attributes
- See Paladin races for paladins by race.
- See List of paladins for notable paladins of various races from lore.
- See Paladins: Tips and Advice for further advice and tips on the paladin's varying roles.
- See the paladin category for further information on the paladin class.
- Statistics of paladins from Warcraft II.
- Divine Magic
- Spell Damage Coefficients
- Paladin twinking guide
- BC tanking equipment (paladin)
- Patch 7.0.3 (19-Jul-2016): Warriors and Paladins can now equip Plate armor from level 1 (down from level 40).
- See Paladin/Cataclysm changes.
- ^ Of Blood and Honor, page 5
- ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 54, 77.
- ^ Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 90.
- ^ World of Warcraft: The Roleplaying Game, pg. 79.
- ^ Paladin unit overview
- ^ Dark Factions, pg. 154-155.
- ^ Old official World of Warcraft: Cataclysm site → Class combinations matrix
- Talent calculators