With 17 advanced classes available in Lost Ark (at the time of publishing), first-time players have a lot of choices when it comes to choosing their first character. Lost Ark is an alt-friendly game, so leveling up multiple classes is a breeze.
But for players who can’t decide their first class to choose, we recommend Paladin. Granted, we’re somewhat biased because our main is a Paladin (proof below).
But Paladins are a popular choice for a good reason. Paladins bring a lot of utility and decent damage to the table. In fact, most endgame activities almost always have a Paladin in them due to the party buffs and healing capabilities the class has.
Let’s go into detail about why Paladins are a great first class in Lost Ark.
What Paladins do best
Paladins are one of the most in-demand classes in Lost Ark. Here’s why you should strongly consider leveling a Paladin your first time through Lost Ark.
To be clear, Lost Ark doesn’t have the typical holy trinity of tank, DPS, and healer seen in most MMOs. All classes are viable and designed to deal lots of damage. All classes can use potions to self-heal with some endgame activities having a limit on how many potions can be used.
That being said, Paladins and Bards have a few abilities that help them shield, provide damage buffs, and heal their teammates to improve survivability and make endgame activities smoother. They’re generally seen as support classes, but they can be built to deal damage.
In particular, Paladins have shields and attack buffs with a generous AOE radius meaning you won’t have to worry about missing your buffs. You’re almost always going to apply buffs to your party without having to worry about your party members being out of range of your abilities.
Paladins also provide consistent healing throughout endgame activities. Their Holy Protection provides a shield that heals party members for 8% of their health. In addition, Paladins have a special ability called Blessed Aura that provides a consistent 2.5% healing every 2.5/2.0/15 seconds (depending on the skill level).
Finally, a few of the Paladin’s abilities can afflict enemies with a debuff called Light’s Vestige. This debuff increases the damage enemies take by 10%. So if your party has an attack buff while enemies have a damage taken debuff, you can expect to see enemies’ health bars get depleted quickly.
Paladin’s support skills
Here are the specific skills Paladins use to support their party members:
- Holy Protection: Shields allies and heals them for 8%.
- Light Shock: Damages enemies and provides a 10% damage taken debuff.
- Godsent Law: Shields allies and reduces damage taken.
- Wrath of God: Damages enemies and provides an attack buff to your teammates.
- Heavenly Blessing: Damages enemies and provides an attack buff to your teammates.
- Alithane’s Judgment: Awakening skill; damages enemies and provides a shield to your allies based on 80% of your max HP.
- Holy Aura: Allies in this aura deal 10% increased damage to enemies, allies take less damage, and allies get healed for 2% of their HP on a consistent interval.
Naturally high defense and tankiness
Paladins are part of the Warrior base class, so their gear always has high defense values. This is great for new players as you can take a few hits to learn boss mechanics without worrying about dying to one-shots.
Like we said earlier, every class in Lost Ark is designed to do lots of damage. Paladins have great AOE skills that make it easy to clear mobs and progress through the endgame faster. Paladin’s party buffs and enemy debuffs also make it easier to defeat enemies.
High demand for endgame activities
The toughest encounters in Lost Ark are 8-man raids that require coordination and teamwork. While raids are capable of being finished with 8 damage-focused classes, many groups often save 2 spaces for a Paladin and Bard.
Demand for support roles is so high that in the first week of the Valtan Legion Raid, Paladins received up to 5,000 in-game gold to join parties. If you’ve ever wanted to feel wanted, level a Paladin and reach the endgame.
The reasoning is that the buffs, debuffs, and healing provided by Paladins and Bards are worth much more than the damage provided by 2 “selfish” DPS classes. Groups that consist of Paladins and Bards consistently clear content much quicker and are an overall smoother process.
Additionally, most endgame parties use 1 Paladin and 1 Bard. The reason is that Paladin’s buffs can’t stack, so 2 Paladins would, unfortunately, end up canceling out each other’s buffs if they’re not coordinating when to use them.
What about Bards?
One thing we’re going to make clear is that Paladin and Bard are both S-tier classes. You can’t go wrong with either class and it’s common to see both classes in endgame 8-man activities. Paladins aren’t better than bards and vice versa.
The reason we’re specifically recommending Paladin instead of Bard for new players is due to the natural defenses and easier shield application for Paladins.
Paladins are part of the Warrior base class, so they get access to lots of high defense values with their normal gear. This allows Paladins to have better survivability and allows them to take hits while learning the game’s harder content. Bards have to rely on the Level 3 Heavy Armor engraving which can take time to get.
Finally, Paladins have an easier time applying consistent shields. Bards are great at shielding, but the low AOE of their shields makes it tricky to ensure every party member is shielded.
Why we recommend Paladin for first-time players
Paladins make learning the endgame activities easier. You’re able to take hits and heal yourself easily to ensure you aren’t the weak link in your party. Lost Ark isn’t a difficult game at all, but it’s nice to have insurance to ensure the content gets cleared and you get rewards.
Paladins generally make the game easier to clear too. You’ll notice that endgame content that has a Paladin or Bard in it tends to get cleared much faster.
All in all, Paladins are a fantastic first class for new Lost Ark players. We highly recommend leveling this class if you’re new to Lost Ark.