Retribution paladin glyphs

Cross posted at Big Hit Box on 26 October 2009

This post is being cross-posted at Big Hit Box.  Its my first time posting over there so let hope everyone is nice to me 🙂

Glyphs were introduced only in Wrath of the Lich King.  Made by Inscriptors, they add dps, utility or just plain random fun to your character.  They are rather strange and highly variable across classes.  As a healing priest, for example, there are about 6 fabulous major glyphs.  As a retribution paladin?  Well there two that are fairly good, another couple that are okay, a few ‘meh if I have to’ and the rest are more ‘wtf?’

Please note all these are PvE related comments.  For PvP its probably completely different.  I don’t really know as I’m terrible at PvP.

I’ve listed only Glyphs that are classed as retribution (by Wowhead) or are used by retribution paladins because they are good.  There are a lot of other glyphs.  Many relate to spells we don’t use, but Holy and Prot do, or that have effects we’d not be interested in.

The good major glyphs
Theres two really good major glyphs.  These are the ones you should absolutely have.

Glyph of Judgement – Your Judgements deal 10% more damage.
Yes please!  I’d like to volunteer for 10% more damage on one of my best abilities.  Thank you.

Glyph of Consecration – Increases the duration and cooldown of Consecration by 2 seconds.
This is the most common one for people who aren’t sure what they are doing to miss.  Its actually fab!  Think about what it does for a second.  For the same mana cost and global cooldown you are getting an extra two seconds on your Consecration.  The fact that the cooldown increases is irrelevant because the duration increases.

The last major glyph slot
What you put in this slot depends upon your gear.

Glyph of Seal of Vengeance – Your Seal of Vengeance or Seal of Corruption also grants 10 expertise while active.
Are you expertise capped from gear?  If no choose this!  Being expertise capped is a firm dps upgrade and something you should strive for.  What it means is that the boss can’t dodge your attacks as long as you are standing behind it.  The expertise cap is 26.  This contributes 10 expertise.  Thats expertise, not expertise rating.  So 10/26.

Glyph of Exorcism – Increases damage done by Exorcism by 20%.
Are you expertise capped from gear?  Yes.  I am.  I have the awesome looking Sharpened Obsidian Edged Blade from Onyxia.  Who wants a Justicebringer when swords look this cool?  It has a load of expertise so you can pop this Glyph back on if you find yourself in that situation.

The good minor glyph

Glyph of Sense Undead – Damage against Undead increased by 1% while your Sense Undead ability is active.
Why is it good?  Its the only minor glyph that improves your dps at all in any way.

The other minor glyphs
For your last minor slots you don’t have a lot of options.  There are no more glyphs to increase dps for minors.  I would suggest:

Glyph of Lay on Hands – Reduces the cooldown of your Lay on Hands spell by 5 min.
This is a utility spell you can and should use a lot so its a nice glyph.

For your last slot its not like you have a lot of choice.  There are no just for fun glyphs sadly.  And no reagent free glyphs (you’d think there would be one for death bubble at least!)   So I went for:

Glyph of Blessing of Might – Increases the duration of your Blessing of Might spell by 20 min when cast on yourself.
This is useful because it saves your a reagent while farming.  And because you can use it to juggle buffs (buff Wisdom on all those Holy palas and then throw Might on yourself).

Alternatively you might choose:

Glyph of Blessing of Kings – Reduces the mana cost of your Blessing of Kings and Greater Blessing of Kings spells by 50%.
For less time drinking after a wipe.

Not really worth it glyphs (major)

Glyph of Avenging Wrath – Reduces the cooldown of your Hammer of Wrath spell by 50% while Avengin Wrath is active.
There was a time when I had this glyph.  But that was a time when Seal of Martyr/Blood still existed and Exorcism only worked on undead.  This glyph is annoying because you have to save your wings for it.  Its really poor in comparision to the other major glyphs tho it is a very small dps upgrade.

WTF? glyphs (major)

Glyph of Crusader Strike – Reduces the mana cost of your Crusader Strike ability by 20%.
Riiight.  Now you will see people pick this up because they have mana issues.  However – retribution paladins do not have mana issues.  If you have mana problems you are just managing your mana poorly.  Before you nerf your dps try using Divine Plea more, Judging Wisdom and using mana potions.  If all those fail – you’re doing it wrong.  Go back and try again.  This glyph is bad.

I say this from experience btw.  I tend to Judge Light because I have Vindication.  I only ever run out of mana in a raid (10 or 25 these days) when I’ve forgotten to hit Divine Plea as often as I could have.  Or when I’ve had to heal/dispel/etc.  And then I just Judge Wisdom for a bit if we don’t have another ret pala.

Glyph of Divine Storm – Your Divine Storm now heals for an additional 15% of the damage it causes.
Healers heal.  You dps.  Again, never worth sacrificing your dps for.

Glyph of Hammer of Wrath – Reduces the mana cost of Hammer of Wrath by 100%.
Reduces the mana cost of something you can only use for 20% of a fight?  Only its not even 20% of a fight since everyone else has this type of ability too so the last 20% takes less time.  Nah.

Glyph of Seal of Command – You gain 8% of your base mana each time your use a Judgement with Seal of Command active.
Again with the mana saving!  I don’t need it.  Neither do you.

So in summary you should have:


  • Glyph of Judgement
  • Glyph of Consecration
  • Glyph of Seal of Vengeance (or Glyph of Exorcism if you are expertise capped from gear)


  • Glyph of Sense Undead
  • Glyph of Lay on Hands
  • Glyph of Blessing of Might

4 thoughts on “Retribution paladin glyphs

Add yours

  1. Glyph of Divine Storm is great for PvP – Consecrate is not (neither is SoV). Overall I agree from a PvE standpoint – just not from a PvP side.

    Also – and this is just my personal beef – you say “Healers heal. You DPS”. Do you use Sacred Shield on yourself every fight? Do you use your AoW FoL on yourself?

  2. I did say this was PvE only. I don’t PvP. I know little to nothing about PvP.

    Yes you do utility type things. But what you don’t do is sacrifice dps for healing in a major way (i.e. in talents and gear choices rather than individual moments). My problem is that a lot of the retribution tagged glyphs do nothing for retribution. I have other chars and they don’t have this same issue with their glyphs. That glyph is terrible for PvE ret. And so are the mana reduction ones. Which they felt the need to repeat, and repeat and repeat …

  3. While still leveling my pally, until a high enough level to take Judgements of the Wise, I found the Seal of Command glyph useful. I realize your article is intended for endgame 80, but I thought I’d mention it should another leveling pally come across it.

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