Tag Archives: divine protection

Barkskin in the Firelands

Damage mitigation is not just for tanks or PVP. Good use of your damage mitigation abilities make for happy healers and happy raid leaders.

Barkskin is a druid ability that is completely full of win:

The druid’s skin becomes as tough as bark. All damage taken is reduced by 20%. While protected, damaging attacks will not cause spellcasting delays. This spell is usable while stunned, frozen, incapacitated, feared or asleep. Usable in all forms. Lasts 12 sec.Barkskin

It costs no mana and triggers no global cooldown so there’s really no excuse for not making the most of it.

Here are some ideal times to use Barkskin for each boss in the Firelands raid. Most of these situations are also good times to use Divine Protection if you are a Paladin since the two talents are quite similar.


There isn’t a whole lot of raid damage on Shannox. You have two options for when to Barkskin. Either you can save it for Face Rage (if you get targeted), or you can use it whenever Shannox uses Hurl Spear. You only need to Barkskin this if you are in 50 yards of the spear target.

In phase 2, you should use Barkskin for every Magma Rupture.

Heroic: Use Barkskin any time you are targeted by Rageface, whether it’s a Face Rage or just melee attacks. You can also use it for Hurl Spear if it’s in 50 yards of you.


Use Barkskin on every Venom Rain. These happen approximately every 80 seconds.

In phase 2, use Barkskin whenever you can to counter the repeated Ember Flares.

Heroic: You can use this at the same times as in normal. If you are responsible for intercepting Broodlings though, you may want to use it just before hitting one to reduce the damage from the Volatile Burst and the poison left on the ground.

Lord Rhyolith

Barkskin before as many Concussive Stomps as you can. You’ll likely only get time to use it once in phase 2, use it whenever you can to counter the constant Immolation damage.

Heroic: Same uses as normal.


Use Barkskin straight off to counter Firestorm. During phase 1 all of the damage is avoidable, so you shouldn’t really need Barkskin. If you get clipped by a Lava Spew or a Brushfire, the best thing to do is just run away immediately. You could use Barkskin on cooldown just to be safe (in case you cop a Fieroblast or something).

During phase 2, pop Barkskin as soon as the Fiery Tornadoes spawn, just in case.

There’s no damage taken in phase 3, but phase 4 has constant AoE damage. Use Barkskin when Alysrazor reaches ~80 Molten Power to counter the damage from both Blazing Buffet and the Full Power that happens at the end of the phase.

Heroic: Same uses as normal.


If you’re a healer you shouldn’t take any damage during the Baleroc encounter so there is no need for Barkskin. However, if you’re a dps and are tanking a Shard, use Barkskin to lessen the Torment damage.

Majordomo Staghelm

During Scorpion phase use Barkskin whenever you can. If he will be in Scorpion form for 9 or 10+ Flame Scythes use it once before the first scythe and then again when it’s off cooldown.  During the phase when Searing Seeds are active, use Barkskin just before yours goes off.

During Cat phase, the damage is not predictable and is mostly avoidable so there’s not much use for Barkskin. However, when Burning Orbs are active, you can use it if you end up tanking one of those.


During phase 1 the only predictable damage is from Magma Trap Eruptions. Use Barkskin just before a trap is triggered. It should be usable twice during this phase.

During transition phases you can use Barkskin on cooldown as you will likely be getting hit by random Lava Bolts fairly often.

In phase 2 use your Barkskin just as Molten Seeds spawn. It should still be up as they are exploding.

Phase 3 doesn’t have any avoidable damage, so Barkskin is of limited use. Save it for if you get caught in a Lava Wave or Engulfing Flames.

Evaluating Holy Paladins with World of Logs

This is part of a series about using World of Logs to evaluate raiders.

First, a big thank-you to my guildmate Nazaniel and Kurnmogh from Kurn’s Corner for sharing their pally secrets and helping me with this guide.

Here are specific things to look for when analyzing holy paladin logs. It’s best to look at specific kills or attempts in order to get meaningful numbers.

Healing Done

Paladins are masters of tank healing and have a lot of utility spells and cooldowns to juggle. More than straight healing output, the mark of a good paladin comes from how well they make use of their abilities.

Player Details

Healing by Spell

World of Logs - Paladin healing by spellThere are a number of things to look for on this screen, including:

Spell selection – Is the paladin using all their available spells?

Paladins have: Divine Light, Holy Light, Beacon of Light, Holy Shock, Holy Radiance, Word of Glory, Light of Dawn, Lay on Hands, plus passive healing from Protector of the Innocent and Illuminated Healing. Healing from all of these spells should be seen on most fights. The only spell that is not typically used much, if at all, is Flash of Light due to it’s poor mana efficiency.

Top 3 spells – A paladin’s top spells will vary based on the fight and their assignment. For fights that are heaviest on tank damage (Omnitron, Nefarian, Halfus) the top spells will usually be: Divine Light, Holy Light and Beacon of Light, followed closely by Holy Shock.

As raid damage gets heavier (Magmaw, Cho’gall) Holy Radiance will generally creep up into the top 3, along with Light of Dawn (though this will generally only be prevalent in 25s). The more grouped up the raid is, the more effective these spells are.

Notes on specific spells:

Divine Light vs. Holy Light

World of Logs - Divine Light and Holy LightTwo slow, direct healing spells, but one costs 3x the mana and heals for 3x as much. The amount these spells are used will depend on the fight and damage taken. Check the amount of overheal on these two spells. If the overhealing on Divine Light is too high (nearing or over 40%), the paladin is wasting mana and should be relying more on Holy Light.

Holy Shock

Holy Shock should be used very often to maximize Holy Power gains. Though it won’t be on top in terms of healing done, it should be near the top in terms of number of times it is cast.

Word of Glory and Light of Dawn

World of Logs - Light of Dawn and Word of GloryThese are basically free spells and should be used frequently. Word of Glory is most likely to have higher use in a 10-man, and Light of Dawn will likely be used more in a 25.

Lay on Hands

World of Logs - Holy LightThe first thing to look for is whether Lay on Hands was used at all. In addition to providing a huge amount of healing, with Glyph of Divinity LoH also returns mana.

Though it may not get used on every fight, it should be used on most fights. A lack of LoH over a raid night should set off warning bells.

Guardian of Ancient Kings

This will show up as a pet on the Healing Done screen. When activated, it will heal the target of your next 5 heals and everyone within 10 yards of them. This should be present on every boss fight.

Buffs Cast

This screen will tell you how often a paladin is using their cooldowns, along with the uptime on key abilities.

World of Logs - Holy Paladin buffs castAura – Whether it’s Concentration, Resistance, Devotion or Retribution, an Aura should be up 100% of the time.

Beacon of Light – Paladins’ signature ability. Ideal uptime is 100%.

Judgements of the Pure – Increases casting speed for 1 minute after a Judgement. The goal is to have this up 100% of the time, though it’s generally a couple percent less (due to range issues, waiting a few seconds at the start of the fight, etc.).

World of Logs - Holy Paladin power gainsSeal of Insight – Gives the paladin mana back on melee swings and judgements. Should be up 100% of the time. This does not always show up under buffs. If it doesn’t, check the Power Gains table on the Buffs Cast screen. Seal of Insight should be the number 1 source of mana return.

Conviction – When properly talented this increases healing done by 3% and
stacks three times. Uptime is based on how often a paladin crits. This should have an uptime of 90% or above. If the uptime is much lower than 85%, your paladin needs a bit more crit to help ensure this is constantly running.

Avenging Wrath – Increases healing by 20% for 20 seconds, 2 minute cooldown with talents. This should be used as often as possible. Generally 2-4 times per boss depending on the length of the fight.

Divine Favor – Increases haste and crit chance by 20% for 20 seconds, 3 minute cooldown. This should be used as often as possible. Generally 2-3 times per boss depending on the length of the fight.

Divine Plea – Restores mana over 9 seconds at the cost of reduced healing, 2 minute cooldown. The reduction in healing means it’s best used during down times, so it won’t necessarily be used on cooldown. If a paladin complains about running oom, but doesn’t use this often, there is a problem. Avenging Wrath and Divine Favor can be used to offset the healing reduction.

Divine Protection – Reduces damage taken by 20%, 40 second cooldown with correct talents. This should be used often, but not necessarily on cooldown. Check my guide to Barkskin in Tier 11, as all the uses apply to Divine Protection as well. There is a glyph for this which removes the physical damage compontent and doubles the magic damage reduction, making it extremely useful on fights like Nefarian.

Aura Mastery – Doubles the effect of your Aura. Is very handy to use this with Resistance Aura on fights with shadow, fire or frost damage, or with Concentration Aura to make the raid temporarily immune to silences and interrupts. It should be used regularly on fights where these effects are helpful.

Hand of Sacrifice – This is great for times of heavy tank damage. Paladins should be making regular use of this.

Divine Shield – Used in emergencies. It won’t be used often, but if you find the paladin is often dying without ever using it, there is a problem.

Hand of Salvation/Protection/Freedom – These are situational spells. They probably won’t be used too often, but I see their proactive use as a sign of excellent raid awareness.

Trinkets – If the paladin has an on-use trinket equipped, check the cooldown on it and the amount of times used. They should be used the maximum amount possible.