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The Paladin is the level 15 subclass that specialize s the most in physical combos and close-range damage dealing. You'll be able to lay down the hurt and have the HP to survive. There are two main trees of skills in the job. One of them -- Goddess Relic, Sacred Hammering, Charitable Zap, Electric Smite, Hammer of Divinity -- is the Crusader tree. The other -- Autoblock, Stance of Faith, Aerial Block, Divine Punishment, Iron Will, The God Within -- is the Guardian tree. Whichever subclass you want to work towards, you'll be able to put points into most of these skills, and you'll just want to focus more on one or the other to get the ultimate ability. That's quite a ways off for now, though, as the level 40 cap will be some time in the future.
Each of the two trees has it's own pros and cons.
- Pro: High Damage. Probably one of the best PvE classes.
- Pro: Great survivability. High HP and defense.
- Pro: Lots of flashy attacks, including a gigantic cross dropped from the sky.
- Con: Juggleable. Without taking Guardian skills, you can be knocked around a lot.
- Con: Light element. You don't have the option to change it up like an Elementalist might.
- Pro: Never die. Ever. Basically every Guardian skill says "you don't take damage, and also counterattack."
- Pro: Good damage. You may not be actively attacking, but you can wade into a mob and lay down the hurt.
- Con: Not a great partier. If enemies don't hit you, you can't counterattack them.
- Con: Not great at PvP. Players can just decide not to attack when you're ready to counter.
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Paladin Class Skills, Level 15 - 23
A utoblock unlocks at level 15, equires level 3 Block, and costs 8 SP to learn and 3 to level. It's a passive skill that gives you, at level 1, a 10% chance to block attacks. That percentage gets higher each rank in the skill. You need 8 ranks in it for Autoblock Ex, one of the third job skills. It's basically a must-have for Paladins.
Provoke is another level 15 skill, and is 10 SP to learn, 4 to level. It's a self-buff, of a sorts. It draws the enemy attention to you and decreases the enemy rate of stunning or critting you. It's great to have at least one level in it for party play, but if you plan to do most of your time solo, you might not need or want it.
Goddess Relic is another level 15 skill. It requires Paralyze Bolt level 3 and is 10 SP to learn, 4 to level. After a brief cast, you drop a cross the size of a house on to a group of enemies in a certain position in front of you. It deals some pretty good damage and can hit enemies on the ground, but be aware of the delay in casting it. It's a great skill and you need 11 ranks in it for the Goddess Relic Ex.
Shin Breaker is unlocked at level 17 and requires level 2 Sliding Step and costs 8 SP to learn and 3 to level. It's another sliding step attack but uses your melee attack rather than offhand attack button. You essentially dash forward and knock a bunch of enemies up into the air. It's great for starting combos and air juggles, even better with a warrior helping. Plus, it'll hit enemies on the ground and fling them up too.
Stance of Faith requires level 17 and 1 level in Autoblock. 10 SP to learn and 4 to level. Basically you sacrifice the ability to jump to go into a defensive stance. You're stationary, but you block every attack. What's more, every time you're hit you send out a wave of energy to damage monsters nearby. Leveling the skill makes it last longer. Amazing for PvE, less so for PvP, because other players can just not attack you. If you try to move you cancel the skill, so be aware of that.
Divine Ascension is level 19, requires level 1 Stance of Faith, costs 8 SP to learn and 3 to level. It's a counterattack added on to your various blocking abilities. Whenever you block an attack with Block, Autoblock, or Stance of Faith, you can click attack to shield bash enemies into the air. This is quite good given the number of guaranteed opportunities to use it.
Sacred Hammering is level 19. It requires Goddess Relic level 2, costs 10 SP to learn and 4 to level. More or less, this skill is a buff that makes your regular attack worth using. It adds magic damage to your attacks and gives you a high stun chance. You need points in it for Smite as well. Keep in mind that the buff lasts 60 seconds, and the cooldown is 60 seconds/ You can keep it up constantly.
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Paladin Skills, Levels 23 - 40
Armor Break is level 23, requires l evel 2 Shin Breaker, costs 10 SP to learn and 4 to level. It's a fast and spammable attack that lowers defenses on top of being damaging. This is a Paladin must-have. Ranks increase the damage and defense reduction, guaranteeing any points here are well spent.
Aerial Block is another level 23 skill, requires Stance of Faith level 2, costs 8 SP, and 3 to level. Essentially a second Aerial Evasion, only it gives you a chance to block attacks while in midair. It has a cooldown, but it can be a life saver.
Charitable Zap is level 26, needs Sacred Hammering level 3, Righteous bolt level 1, and 10 SP to learn, with 4 SP to level. It'll electrocute enemies in front of you and, when their electrocution is about to wear off, it will discharge and hit everything around the effected enemies. Useful, especially as a prereq, but has a long cooldown.
Divine Vengeance is level 26 and needs level 2 Divine Ascension. 110 SP to learn, 4 to level. It's just like Divine Ascension, too. WIth Ascension you left-click to launch enemies once you block them. With Vengeance you right click to slam a shockwave in the ground to blast enemies away.
Shield Charge is level 29, needs Armor Break level 3, costs 10 SP to learn and 4 to level. Basically, you dash charge through enemy mobs, dealing damage with your shield along the way and taking 50% less damage while you do so. It is great for charging through mobs trying to pin you, or chasing down enemies, or in general just using for damage.
Elemental Aura is level 29, 10 SP to learn, and 4 to level. It's a buff that raises your partys fire and ice damage and resistance. Given that you as a cleric use neither of those elements, it's only useful if you party with people who do. One interesting thing is the skill's nature. You toggle it on and it drains MP while active, and you can cancel it by casting again or a different aura.
Divine Punishment is levle 29, needs Aerial Block level 2, costs 10 SP to learn and 4 to level. Another defensive skill, this one is basically damage reflect. When you get hit, you hit the enemy back, automatically. The damage returned is calculated as if you had no armor or resistance, so with enough ranks you can be dealing a lot of damage with it.
Iron will is level 32 and requires Divine Punishment 1. 10 SP to learn, 4 to level. It's a buff that gives you 75% damage reduction for 12 seconds, at rank 1. It has a full minute cooldown, but it's great for getting out of tough situations.
Electric Smite is level 32, needs Charitable Zap level 3, 10 SP to learn, 4 to level. It's a melee attack where you jump forward and smash the ground and have lightning bolts rain down around you, sort of like a supercharged Righteous Strike. Great damage and useful for both subclasses of Paladin.
Conviction Aura is level 35, needs 10 SP to learn, and 4 to level. It's a buff that you toggle on and off, like Elemental Aura. It overwrites Elemental Aura, in fact, so you can only have one active at a time. It's useful in that it increases Light resistance and damage, which is directly beneficial for your skills. It's a lot of SP to learn though.
The God Within is level 40, requires Iron Will level 2, and costs 10 SP to learn. It's the defensive tree's ultimate skill. It raises your strength and int by 300% and your Vitality by 100%, movement speed by 50%, and deals magic damage to enemies in front of you when you use it. Not to mention, it makes you literally invincible. Unfortunately, it has a VERY long cooldown, at just over two minutes. Superbly useful.
Hammer of Divinity is the other level 40 skill, requires Electric Smite level 3, and costs 10 SP. It's the offensive tree ultimate. You summon a massive hammer and swing it, dealing physical and light elemental magic damage to a large area. Essentially a massive explosion of damage in front of you. Definitely useful.