An interesting point brought up by our resident Paladin was “Do different kinds of healers do better for different kinds of tanks?”. AKA do White Mages / Scholars heal Paladins / Warriors better?
Warrior – White Mage
Warriors are healed better by White Mages. An extreme HP pool makes Graniteskin worth every MP spent to cast it. Marauder HP wildly fluctuates and Regen makes healing them smoother and less ‘risky’. Warriors do alot of self-healing, which would help alleviate the WHM mana problems.
This combination is extremely potent because it frees up your WHM’s GCD’s. A warrior can survive on his own longer than a PLD can, this makes sure the White Mage can make maximum use of his Free Cure and Overcure procs. I’m sure you can even hardcast raise in the fight if you’re healing a Warrior. While I’d be a little more wary attempting that while healing a paladin.
Paladin – Scholar
Paladins are healed better by Scholars. Giving a shield on each heal “extends” the Paladins small base HP with each cast of Succor. If Succor lands a critical – it’s okay because the the shield doesn’t go to waste. Compared to a CNJ/WHM heal that just overheals. The superior resource management of SCH allows them to heal for a longer period of time, albeit weaker than WHM. This suits the more stable, mitigation based tanking style of Paladins.
Just like the warrior white mage combo, Scholars healing Paladins give the scholar more freedom and peace of mind. A critical heal could mean an extra 2-3 spell casts on other party members, whereas if a WHM crit heal a PLD, it means nothing.
But of course, these are just minor points. A combination of spells from each healer would be the most effective for the success of a raid, and it all depends on the encounter. But generally speaking WHM heals WAR better, and SCH heals PLD better.
Lets remind ourselves of one thing. I’ll give you a scenario to better help you visualize it. If a warrior and paladin were to try and solo a boss, the warrior would last longer due to self-healing, shielding and a huge pool of HP. But if a healer was added to the equation, Paladins will outlast the Marauder. Why? High natural defenses, block rate, and high-quality pure defensive skills make each point of HP healed on a paladin “worth more”. Does this mean Paladins are better? Definitely not. It takes time for a Paladin to see this difference, and will feel it with longer, harder hitting encounters.
Superior resource management, superior defenses, more interrupts and a simpler playstyle make it much better for a Paladin to tank high priority targets. Warriors need to combo and manage defiance, and movement/positioning or interrupting boss skills will break this flow. Paladins are much less affected by this. They can focus more on interrupting spells (more often, too!), proper positioning and directing the raid makes Paladins an excellent choice for Main Tank.
While you do not need godly player-skill or mechanics to play a Paladin (As compared to warrior), you do need a keen sense of strategy and overall awareness of what’s happening with your raid. As such, it’s recommended that Paladins as Main Tanks should be one of your main ‘raid leaders’.
Warriors excel at dealing great damage and healing from that damage. Naturally, if the target is weaker, or there are more targets, Warriors can leverage this more. It’s quite simply really, with 25% lifesteal, hitting 2 monsters will heal you for double the amount as compared to hitting one. Warriors have access to high threat on demand, by straining their TP pool for a while longer. Every healing knows the feeling of trying to mass-heal everyone at the same time a bunch of adds just spawned. This exact scenario is where warriors shine. They can more easily pick up mobs and make them stick.
Better damage and better skills to deal and even benefit from adds makes Warriors alot better for an Off-Tank. If a Paladin were to deal with adds, the time it will take to clear them will be longer – simply because they deal a pathetic amount of damage. Warriors will literally melt them (Berserk), heal from them (Bloodbath), reflect their damage (Vengeance) and even gain life landing killing blows (Mercy Stroke). Longer time dealing with adds = more chances to mess up = more mana spent on healing. This is not a problem for warriors.
Warriors are skill-intensive, and it will take time and practice to bring out the most out of your warrior (In comparison to Paladins). Handling short but intense adds spawning phases during boss fights should be something every Warrior should get used to and excel at.
Summary & Recommendations
So in an 8-man team, how many Paladins and Warriors would you want? One of Each. Paladins are highly recommended for tanking the main-boss, and Warriors are highly recommended for tanking adds.
While you can succeed any raid with 2 Paladins and 2 Warriors, we would suggest leveraging the strengths and offsetting the weakness of each class by using them to their best capabilites. Our raid composition includes one of each!
Do you have anything to add to the discussion? Please don’t hesitate to drop a comment! Or you can post on the official thread for this post:
PLD vs. WAR Forum thread