Paladin Primer

Vigilamus Pro Te - by Aletin

Paladin is a supportive powerhouse with a very strict rotation. Its tools for AoE mitigation and single target mitigation on other people are the biggest strengths of Paladin, allowing healers more freedom when compared to the other tanks.


Level 80 Gear Guide

Meld Priority

Crit > SkS (to GCD) > DH > Det > Ten

5.4 Best in Slot (BiS)

2.43 GCD

Smoked Chicken

2.42 GCD

Chicken Fettuccine

2.41 GCD

Chicken Fettuccine

2.40 GCD

Chicken Fettuccine

Opener & Rotation

Optimized openers can vary depending on encounters and push timing

Standard Opener

Shifted Atonement Rotation

Following a Fight or Flight opener in a full-uptime situation, every third Atonement may be delayed until after the next Goring Blade to fit 4 Atonements into each Fight or Flight window. This is a minor potency gain (~0.5% average, depending on rotation length and server DoT tick timing) as long as Goring Blades remain 8 or 9 GCDs apart.

Note that Fight or Flight is used after Riot Blade and must contain 11 GCDs.

60s Rotation

Paladin’s natural rotation is approximately 63 seconds long, which means Fight or Flight and Requiescat (both with 60-second cooldowns) are delayed by 1 GCD per minute. In some situations this can cost FoF GCDs or even a Confiteor usage before the end of a phase, and in very long encounters with minimal downtime, physical oGCDs must eventually be delayed as well to stay lined up with FoF.

By using 1 less Holy Spirit per minute (or Atonement, if necessary) the rotation may be shortened to 60 seconds. However, this comes at the additional cost of a Goring Blade tick, and may not be a potency gain if the phase ends on a weaker GCD than Atonement as a result, or if a 63-second rotation lines up better with certain mechanics.

There is no simple answer for which rotation is best without considering how it affects the entire encounter.

Encounter Rotations

For the current Savage tier and TEA

Frequently Asked Questions

Shield yourself from these common missteps

Fitting 2 full Goring Blades into each standard FoF window is top priority, but sacrificing a buffed GCD on a regular basis to make this easier is not a good practice outside of progression, and is only necessary if encounter mechanics force a disengagement during Fight or Flight. 10 GCD FoF windows are weaker and also limit the optimizations you can do with your rotation, such as fitting 4 Atonements into FoF.

Instead, ensure your FoF timing is precise (always in the second half of the GCD cycle, not immediately after the previous GCD) and you aren’t double-weaving during FoF with high latency (>100 ms). As long as you keep the GCD rolling, fitting 11 GCDs into FoF with proper timing is always possible at recommended skill speeds, regardless of latency.

Following a standard opener, every physical oGCD will naturally line up with Fight or Flight if kept on cooldown (but Intervene should be stacked and used twice in each FoF window). If downtime misaligns an oGCD with FoF, consider whether delaying the oGCD will cost a usage before the end of the phase. Maximizing oGCD usages is always more important than fitting them into buffs.

For optimization, line up Circle of Scorn with multi-target opportunities whenever possible, use Spirits Within earlier in the opener if necessary to avoid lining it up with incoming burst damage, and prioritize keeping uptime with Intervene during movement-heavy mechanics.

Goring Blade should be applied every 8 or 9 GCDs in a full-uptime situation to maximize the potency of each usage. However, if downtime will occur immediately after Royal Authority (and cause Atonement usages to be lost), it is usually preferable to skip the previous Goring Blade and use Royal Authority earlier instead, because 3 Atonements are worth more than a full Goring Blade combo if the total amount of Royal Authority combos in the phase doesn’t change.

Whenever downtime is involved, case-by-case adjustments to the rotation are recommended to avoid using inefficient Goring Blade combos which would prevent the use of Atonement (if Royal Authority must also be used) or Holy Spirit (if Requiescat is available).

Paladin’s rotation is deceptively easy to recover. As a general rule, the rotation can be fully reset by each Requiescat window as long as Fight or Flight and Requiescat don’t drift apart (even if they must be used sub-optimally). Losses cannot be reversed, but ensuring personal buff windows do not desync from each other will prevent problems from compounding for the rest of the encounter.

For unexpected single-GCD losses, the solution is simple: drop an Atonement so FoF and Requiescat don’t get delayed. If the loss occurs during the FoF window, dropping an Atonement will also ensure that the next Goring Blade is still buffed by FoF. The leftover Atonement should then replace a Holy Spirit during the next Requiescat window, if possible, due to its higher potency and shorter recast time.

For multiple-GCD losses (broken combos or long disengagements), the solution is to drop a Goring Blade combo at some point before the next Requiescat, because 3 Atonement/Holy Spirit usages are worth more than a full Goring Blade combo, if 3 GCDs must be sacrificed to prevent buff delays. Alternatively, dropping multiple Atonements (or forcing multiple Atonements into Requiescat) with standard Goring Blade timing still works, but is less efficient.

If either FoF or Requiescat is delayed by more than 1 GCD in an unoptimized setting, it is a good idea to simply use the buff and continue with the normal rotation from that point without any further adjustments (which will delay both buffs by an equal amount). This will prevent desync between buffs, but can still break alignment with encounter mechanics and/or cost a usage before the end of the phase.

In summary, keep FoF and Requiescat in sync and on time to mitigate rotational losses, even if combos don’t line up properly. Requiescat will put you back on track.

Log Analysis

xivanalysis is a fantastic site for an overview of your endgame encounter performance.

Mitigation Cheatsheet

Click to enlarge

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