Lineage II: Role Overview - Tanks II, The Paladin
MMORPG.com Lineage II Correspondent Žygimantas Mockus writes this overview of the tanking role in Lineage II, this time focusing on the Paladin.
Last time we ended by looking at the Human Dark Avenger. So, there are 3 tank classes left. Then, what are we waiting for? Let's begin.
Human Paladin Class tree: Human Fighter--->Human Knight--->Paladin--->Phoenix Knight
Unlike the Dark Avenger who is a mix of a summoner and a tank, the Paladin is a hybrid of a tank and a healer. He can be considered a primary tank in parties and he has quite good healing abilities. Under rare circumstances, he can heal even better than bishop. However, after four or five heals you will notice that you are out of mana, so healing features should be used only when it's a must. One of the unique Paladin skills is called Sacrifice. This one can sacrifice a Paladin's health for treatment of the other party members. Of course, the Paladin's friends will get a smaller amount of HP than he sacrificed but, in real situations, it's a true life-saver. The other very useful skill is called Shield Stun. While this one does not do any damage on its own, the chance of stunning the opponent is the biggest, which gives a huge advantage over other opponents in both PvP and PvE. As far as self-buffs are concerned, let's look at skill called Majesty. This one provides us P.def (always a welcome boost for a tank), but reduces Evasion approximately by 8. Of course, looking at their DEX rating we should understand that evasion is not a Paladin's strongest point so it shouldn't bother players who play the class. Another noticeable self-buff is called Iron Will, which increases the Paladin's M.def and is very useful against nukers or nuking monsters.
In PvE, a Paladin is the best tank for fighting undead monsters. He has lots of skills such as Holy Armor (increased resistance for dark attacks), Holy Blade (ability to attack with sacred power), Banish Undead (makes the undead flee), and Sanctuary (reduces patk of nearby undead monsters) to fight that mob type. The last one is quite tricky, because the probability of success is quite low, so I suggest saving your MP a bit, and don't use it unless you have lots of mana.
Back to the Paladin's other features; their high CON stat assures that they will not have lots of trouble with HP. However, compared to Temple Knight (Holy Elven tank, which will be discussed later) the Paladin is slow, but understand that it has a hold skill so that it you will not have lots of problems in PvE either. Another very useful skill (not only in PvE) is Aegis Stance which enables possibility to block attacks from all directions. In addition to this, it does not consume any HP or MP, so it's very useful.
Due to the Paladin's completely defensive playstyle, they are sometimes called "Combat Medics" (battle nurse or doctor). With the introduction of CP (combat points - works as an additional HP bar in PvP) back in C4 his abilities to protect himself are even stronger. With additional 3000 CP to protect himself during PvP matches he has more time to react and spam heals if necessary. When HP becomes 30% or less another feature of the Paladin's shows up, it's the skill called Final Fortress. It provides an additional defense boost to make the Paladin even stronger. One of the possible roles in PvP for the Paladin is to be the last man standing in the group during the siege and provide additional HP for hurt party members in order to save them and of course to sway the balance of the whole fight. Most Paladins who play as a military nurse have a tendency to use the following dyes (things that allow you to modify your stats): -STR and +CON, -STR and +DEX, -INT + WIT. Such a dyes allow this class to maximize their number of blocks, HP and casting speed for healing others.
However, nowadays it is popular for a Paladin to give up an ordinary "military nurse" role and to pick up a role of a damage dealer. Using Dyes like - CON + STR, - CON + DEX they sacrifice their HP in order to get the biggest attack speed and damage output. To make an even bigger effect as a damage dealer, they take weapons with the Focus special ability in order to maximize their critical rate. In addition to those things, they take an armor set which suits their playing style such as Blue Wolf, Tallum or Majestic Heavy. It causes confusion for the enemies, because they believe that as a tank, you cannot have a good damage output, but after a few critical hits, they start to realize your playing style. However, most likely by then they will be dead so it is not a bad idea to make your Paladin a damage dealer.
Some high-level skills even support playing as a close range damage dealer. The first example of such a skill is Shield Slam, which stuns enemy and for a few seconds even disarms them, so that means that you get few seconds to make even more damage. Also, they get Physical Mirror, which reflects debuffs. As previously mentioned, Temple Knight Paladins also get Touch of Life. By sacrificing 1621 HP momentarily, you can regain lots of health, the protection for cancel (cancel - debuff that removes all buffs you have) and other debuffs. They also receive ultimate defense with effects three players, enhancing their defensive capabilities for a short period of time. Like all other tanks, the Paladin has passive resistance to bleeding, sleep, and root. Most importantly, they have skill, greatly increasing their resistance of becoming paralyzed. All this gives human tanks a noticeable advantage over the classes, relying on physical attacks. For raiding in 52+, the basic armor set for the tank is Doom Set with its +3 CON, + HP bonus and a bonus to shield block. Additional 24% chance to block the shield in combination with other buffs is very very important. Dark Crystal or Nightmare sets are good, but never give a good chance to block. I would recommend not to wear anything lower than B-Grade for 55 + raid bosses. For the bosses when you are still lowbie, Full Plate Set for 40 + raid bosses, and Brigandine set for 20 + raid bosses will be suitable.